The Edmond Sun

Opinion

April 8, 2013

Obama’s energy policy prevents economic growth

WASHINGTON, D.C. — If only President Obama would take his approach to energy production and apply it to the national debt, we’d be down to 2007 levels in no time. According to a new report from the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service, his administration’s policies have caused production on federal lands to plummet.

Although the president likes to claim that production of oil and natural gas has increased during his tenure, the growth driving the current energy boom has occurred entirely on non-federal lands. On federal lands subject to government control, it’s a different story. Between 2010 and 2012, oil production on federal lands fell by more than 23 percent to levels lower than those in 2007. For natural gas, the decline was 33 percent since 2007, while private lands experienced a 40 percent increase over the same period. Next time President Obama touts his energy record, it’s worth keeping in mind that the federal share of oil production has dropped from 31 percent to 26 percent on his watch while the federal share of natural gas production has been cut almost in half — from 28 percent to 16 percent. Meanwhile, gas prices in February increased for more than 30 days straight, reaching almost record highs for the usually stable winter season.

In addition to outright bans on drilling in promising locations like the Outer Continental Shelf, the Obama administration has limited or delayed drilling everywhere else. The CRS report reveals the average time to process a federal drilling permit application is now 307 days — a 41 percent jump.

And then there’s the Keystone XL pipeline. In March, yet another environmental study concluded that the pipeline from Canada to the Gulf Coast would be environmentally safe. In what a former U.S. ambassador to Canada dubbed “the longest permitting process in the history of the world,” this most recent State Department study is the fourth in four years to affirm that the pipeline is safe. It is also popular. Every governor of the six states — including Oklahoma — through which it would pass are onboard, and 70 percent of the American people support the project. According to the House Energy and Commerce Committee, construction and operation of Keystone would create more than 20,000 direct jobs and 100,000 indirect jobs and carry nearly a million additional barrels of oil per day to U.S. refineries. President Obama’s opposition is the only thing standing in the way of these jobs, energy and revenue, yet he still refuses to approve the project.

The House Republican budget plan recognizes the enormously positive impact Keystone will have on the economy and job creation, and immediate approval of the pipeline is a centerpiece of our budget. Rather than taking credit for increased energy production he did not create, President Obama earn a genuine achievement for energy independence and job creation by approving the Keystone pipeline right away.

U.S. REP. TOM COLE, R-Moore, represents Oklahoma’s 4th Congressional District.

1
Text Only
Opinion
  • Loosening constraints on campaign donations and spending doesn’t destroy democracy

    Campaign finance reformers are worried about the future. They contend that two Supreme Court rulings — the McCutcheon decision in March and the 2010 Citizens United decision — will magnify inequality in U.S. politics.
    In both cases, the court majority relaxed constraints on how money can be spent on or donated to political campaigns. By allowing more private money to flow to campaigns, the critics maintain, the court has allowed the rich an unfair advantage in shaping political outcomes and made “one dollar, one vote” (in one formulation) the measure of our corrupted democracy.
    This argument misses the mark for at least four reasons.

    April 23, 2014

  • The top 12 government programs ever

    Which federal programs and policies succeed in being cost-effective and targeting those who need them most? These two tests are obvious: After all, why would we spend taxpayers' money on a program that isn't worth what it costs or helps those who do not need help?

    April 23, 2014

  • Free trade on steroids: The threat of the Trans-Pacific Partnership

    Many supporters of the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership, or TPP, trade agreement are arguing that its fate rests on President Obama’s bilateral talks with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in Japan this week. If Japan and the United States can sort out market access issues for agriculture and automobiles, the wisdom goes, this huge deal — in effect, a North American Free Trade Agreement on steroids — can at last be concluded.

    April 22, 2014

  • Can Hillary Clinton rock the cradle and the world?

    What's most interesting to contemplate is the effect becoming a grandmother will have on Hillary's ambition. It's one of life's unfairnesses that a woman's peak career years often coincide with her peak childbearing years.

    April 22, 2014

  • Chicago Tribune: If Walgreen Co. moves its HQ to Europe, blame Washington’s tax failure

    The Walgreen Co. drugstore chain got its start nearly a century ago in downstate Dixon, Ill., before moving its corporate headquarters to Chicago and eventually to north suburban Deerfield, Ill.
    Next stop? Could be Bern, Switzerland.
    A group of shareholders reportedly is pressuring the giant retail chain for a move to the land of cuckoo clocks. The reason: lower taxes. Much lower taxes.
    If Walgreen changes its legal domicile to Switzerland, where it recently acquired a stake in European drugstore chain Alliance Boots, the company could save big bucks on its corporate income-tax bill. The effective U.S. income-tax rate for Walgreen, according to analysts at Swiss Bank UBS: 37 percent. For Alliance Boots: about 20 percent.

    April 21, 2014

  • Sulphur a future major tourist destination?

    Greta Garbo says, “I want to be alone,” in the 1932 film “Grand Hotel.” That MGM film starred Garbo, John and Lionel Barrymore, Wallace Beery and a young actress from Lawton named Joan Crawford. It told the stories of several different people who were staying at an exclusive hotel of that name in Berlin Germany.
    It was critically well received and it inspired more recent films such as “Gosford Park” and television shows such as “Downton Abbey” in that it detailed the relationship between powerful and wealthy people and those who served them. The film opened amidst much fanfare and it received the Oscar for best picture in the year of its release.

    April 21, 2014

  • St. Louis Post-Dispatch: Why poverty across the world matters to Americans

    A child starving in South Sudan should matter to Americans. That was the message delivered last week by Nancy Lindborg, whose job at the U.S. Agency for International Development is to lead a federal bureau spreading democracy and humanitarian assistance across the world.
    That world has reached a critical danger zone, with three high-level crises combining military conflict with humanitarian catastrophes affecting millions of innocents in Syria, the South Sudan and the Central African Republic.
    But back to that child.

    April 18, 2014

  • Government leadership complicit in overfilling prisons

    One of the thorniest problems facing any society is the question of what to do with transgressors. Obviously, the more complicated a culture becomes, the more factors come into play in trying to figure out what to do with those who choose not to “play by the rules.”

    April 18, 2014

  • My best days are ones normal people take for granted

    It is a weekend for working around the house. My fiancee, Erin, and I have the baby’s room to paint and some IKEA furniture to assemble. I roll out of bed early — 10:30 — and get into my wheelchair. Erin is already making coffee in the kitchen.
    “I started the first wall,” she says. “I love that gray.” Erin never bugs me about sleeping late. For a few months after I was injured in the Boston Marathon bombings, I often slept 15 hours a day. The doctors said my body needed to heal. It must still be healing because I hardly ever see 8 a.m. anymore.

    April 18, 2014

  • Instead of mothballing Navy ships, give them to our allies

    A bitter debate has raged in the Pentagon for several months about the wisdom of taking the nuclear aircraft carrier George Washington out of service to save money. The Washington, at 24 years old a relatively young vessel, is due for a costly refit, a routine procedure that all of the 11 large carriers in service undergo regularly.

    April 18, 2014

Poll

Do you agree with a state budget proposal that takes some funds away from road and bridge projects to ramp up education funding by $29.85 million per year until schools are receiving $600 million more a year than they are now? In years in which 1 percent revenue growth does not occur in the general fund, the transfer would not take place.

Agree
Disagree
Undecided
     View Results