I had the pleasure of being on a conference call yesterday with Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), Rep. Doc Hastings (R-WA), Chair, House Natural Resources Committee and Rep. Cory Gardner (R-CO) discussing their Domestic Energy and Jobs Act.
Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy and other members of the House Energy and Action Team (HEAT) unveiled the Domestic Energy and Jobs Act last week. The bill consists of seven bipartisan bills that have already passed out of committee and it is expected to be considered before the full House the week of June 18.
The purpose of this package of comprehensive bills is to cut through all the red tape, streamline the process for creating energy on federal lands and remove uncertainty for job creators:
“Unfortunately, because of environmental issues, the process is very, very burdensome,” Hastings said.
The Act contains the following:
- H.R. 2150, National Petroleum Reserve Alaska Access Act. This bill cuts through bureaucratic red tape to unlock the full potential of energy resources in the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska (NPR-A) by ensuring that oil and natural gas are developed and transported in a timely and efficient manner. (Hastings, WA-04)
- H.R. 2752, BLM Live Internet Auctions Act. This bill gives the Secretary of the Interior the authority to conduct Internet-based auctions for onshore leases to ensure the best return to the Federal taxpayer, reduce fraud, and secure the leasing process. (Johnson, OH-06)
- H.R. 4381, Planning for American Energy Act. This bill establishes common sense steps to create an all-of-the-above American energy plan for using federal lands to meet our Nation’s energy needs. (Tipton, CO-03)
- H.R. 4382, Providing Leasing Certainty for American Energy Act. This bill makes reforms to the leasing process for onshore oil and natural gas projects on federal land in order to eliminate unnecessary government delays and hurdles. (Coffman, CO-06)
- H.R. 4383, Streamlining Permitting of American Energy Act. This bill reforms the process for energy permitting, once a lease is in hand, to encourage the timely development of our federal onshore oil, natural gas, and renewable resources. (Lamborn, CO-05)
North Dakota has already surpassed Alaska as an oil producer, and is now second behind Texas. This is due to state regulations on private lands which promote energy creation. North Dakota has a 3% unemployment rate, most due to the energy boom. It is believed that if the U.S. were allowed to tap all her fossil fuel reserves they would surpass even Saudi Arabia, leading to energy independence and freedom from relying on “counties who don’t like us very much.”
Rep. McCarthy unveiled this video of Ron Day, the Environmental Health and Safety Manager at the Bismarck-Mandan Tesoro oil refinery, who tells the story of how booming North Dakota energy production has transformed their economy, adding new jobs and strengthening their communities:
The various bills would make leasing on federal agencies much easier and improve access to the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska.
“It’s a simple fact that American energy production creates American jobs and helps grow our economy. States like North Dakota have strongly benefited from booming new energy production on state and private lands while the Obama Administration has kept the vast majority of federal lands off limits to energy development and job creation. As gasoline prices continue to strain the pocketbooks of American families, we need more access to our American energy resources to insulate ourselves from the unstable foreign energy market,” said Chairman Hastings. “These bipartisan bills remove government barriers to American onshore energy production in order to create jobs and make America more energy secure.”
One of President Obama’s first acts was to place a moratorium on most off-shore drilling, with the exception of Virginia. This was after President GW Bush in August of 2008 lifted the drilling moratoriums.
Crossposted at Conservative Outlooks