Thursday, June 23, 2011

Obama Authorizes Release From Strategic Petroleum Reserve

Proving yet again that President Obama has no clue as to what a true energy policy looks like, he announced Thursday that he has authorized the release of 30 million barrels of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve. There has been no emergency to warrant this action, unless one counts the tanking in the public opinion polls that Obama is watching as his re-election looms large on the horizon.

House Natural Resources Committee Chairman Doc Hastings (WA-04) released the following statement after the Obama Administration announced a release of 30 million barrels of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve:

“The Strategic Petroleum Reserve is intended for situations when there’s a dramatic supply shut down, not to achieve short-term political gain. However, this is a clear admission from the Obama Administration that increasing domestic oil supplies will help lower costs. Unfortunately, for the past two and a half years, the Obama Administration has consistently blocked efforts to expand American energy production and has actively placed moratoriums on domestic development. This release will only cover a fraction of the oil production lost from the Gulf of Mexico due to the Administration’s moratorium and permitting delays. The Administration’s anti-American energy policies have left the United States increasingly vulnerable to the whims of the world oil market and OPEC’s erratic decisions on oil supply. Rather than tap the SPR, weakening our domestic security should a real supply disruption occur, we should look to develop our true oil reserves in the Gulf, Alaska, the Outer Continental Shelf and our public lands in order to create jobs, lower prices, reduce our dependence on unstable foreign energy, and strengthen our national security.”

The President would notice, if he came off the golf course at bit more, that the price of gas at the pump is declining and the price of a barrel of crude oil on the commodities market is lower on its own. There is no need for Obama to do this, other than to appear as though he is doing something to appease potential voters. This releasing of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve never produces the desired results of lower costs. It has been tried three times in the recent past and has yet to be successful for more than a few days.

Our energy policy is too important to family budgets and national security for President Obama to play politics with it - especially unnecessarily so. If President Obama were serious, he would know releasing 30 million barrels of oil from the SPR will cost us in the long run and will increase the chance of tapping the SPR again in the future. Just last month, the House passed 3 bills with bipartisan support to increase American energy production, lower gas prices, and create jobs. Most importantly, the 3 bills, sponsored by Chairman Hastings, would decrease America’s dependence on foreign oil and generate $800 million in revenue over 10 years.

Team Obama is in desperate need of common sense.

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