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Chairman Hastings Highlights Need for American Energy Production, Job Creation on C-SPAN’s Washington Journal


WASHINGTON, D.C., March 10, 2011 - House Natural Resources Committee Chairman Doc Hastings (WA-04) today appeared on C-SPAN’s Washington Journal where he discussed a variety of topics including rising gasoline prices, job creation and the need for increased American energy production.

Highlights:

Creating American Jobs
“Energy producing jobs are good jobs…When we’re looking at trying to get our economy to rebound, we ought to look at energy producing jobs because that’s the basis of our economy.”

Harnessing American Energy Resources to Lower Gasoline Prices
“When you look at why gas prices are rising here and how that relates to the everyday American, we have a tremendous amount of resources here in our country, frankly, that we aren’t utilizing. We are dependent for a majority of our crude oil to come from outside of the United States, and so when you have unrest going on in the world that spooks the markets and therefore prices go up. … It should be a goal to become less dependent on worldwide energy fluctuation and we can do that because we have a tremendous amount of reserves here in the continental United States.”

Increasing American Energy Production
“In the Intermountain West, just to say in the shale reserves, the estimate is upwards of 1.5 trillion barrels. And so when we use roughly 20 million barrels a day, you can see that those reserves are plentiful. And that’s only in the Intermountain West. ... It seems to me that this is the best antidote, long term, for these fluctuations in gas prices, is for us to utilize the resources that we have in this country.”

Obama Administration Blocking American Energy Production
“Unfortunately, right after President Obama was sworn in and Secretary Salazar was appointed Secretary of the Interior – they have responsibility over much of the federal lands – they suspended some active leases in the Intermountain West and some exploratory leases in the Intermountain West. So as a result, [energy production] has gone down a tremendous amount even though we have those known reserves.”

The Administration’s De Facto Moratorium And Resulting Job Loss
“My colleagues down there whose constituents have been affected by that have said over and over and over that there is simply a de facto moratorium. It has been a slow-walk process and as a result, unfortunately, the rigs that are used offshore are going elsewhere. That means good jobs are leaving that part of the country too.”

The Strategic Petroleum Reserve
“The strategic reserve was designed for when there is an abrupt cutoff of oil and we had no sources whatsoever. That’s when you tap it. I don’t think you tap it for reasons like we have right now.”

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