During Tuesday night’s State of the Union Address President Barack Obama put energy front and center in his vision of an America built to last. The president stated his support for drilling more oil at home, new fracking technology that is unleashing more cleaner burning domestic natural gas, and the development and deployment of clean energy.
This strategy of getting more fossil fuel at home while also looking to clean alternatives will make America more energy independent and more energy secure.
As part of his post-SOTU barn storming tour, Obama held two events on Thursday to highlight the energy vision he laid out in his address.
The president’s first stop at a UPS facility in Nevada saw Obama highlight the expansion of domestic natural gas production and announce the first regional natural gas corridor. Obama also highlighted new oil and gas leases in the central Gulf of Mexico.
These are effective policies because that will promote safe and responsible oil and gas production and continue to decrease U.S. dependence on foreign sources of oil.
In fact, during the Obama administration, oil imports have already dropped significantly. However, under the George W. Bush administration, dependence on foreign oil imports peaked in 2005 at 60%. In 2010, imports had already dropped to 49% and thanks to new extraction technologies and the policies of the Obama administration, imports are expected to drop to 36% by 2035.
However, since the U.S. consumes 25% of the world’s oil but only holds less than 3% of world oil reserves, our energy security cannot be solved by domestic fossil fuels alone.
This second pillar of the president’s SOTU energy strategy was highlighted during a stop at Buckley Air Force Base just outside Denver, Colorado.
During his remarks, the president expanded upon the commitment he made Tuesday night to increasing the development of renewable energy on public lands and on Department of Defense installations. The 3.25 Gigawatts of power will be developed at no additional cost to the taxpayer. This is thanks to innovative government procurement vehicles such as power purchase agreements and joint ventures.
The president also highlighted DOD’s other energy security successes, such as the adoption of biofuels, the use of renewable energy in theater, and the move toward more efficient jet engines and hybrid ship engines. These new technologies make the military less vulnerable to oil price spikes and supply shock and make them more efficient.
Thursday’s trip highlighted Obama’s bold approach to a more energy secure America.
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