The People of America's Oil and Natural Gas Indusry

Wise Words from the OTC

Jane Van Ryan

Jane Van Ryan
Posted May 5, 2009

"It's just a matter of time before we must act on energy," said API President and CEO Jack Gerard when he met with reporters and bloggers yesterday at the Offshore Technology Conference (OTC) in Houston. But he said our nation needs to be realistic. "We can't just throw a switch and change from one source of energy to another overnight."

Every credible projection on U.S. energy consumption over the next couple of decades shows that oil and natural gas will continue to play a large role in the nation's overall energy mix. And as Jack explained, energy consumption will increase. The U.S. Department of Energy expects energy consumption to climb 9 percent from 2007 to 2030.

How should the nation prepare for the future? Jack discussed several ideas:

  • Efficiency and conservation: As he put it, "Efficiency is good business."
  • Solar and wind power: Jack noted that these renewables account for about 2 percent of our energy mix today and will grow to 4 percent. "What about the other 96 percent?" he asked.
  • Oil and natural gas: "We know the potential of finding oil and natural gas in the previously off-limits offshore areas is huge, and our nation needs the political will to go after it," Jack explained.

Another important point: The oil and natural gas industry has the advanced technology and the know-how to produce energy offshore while protecting the marine environment.

More on that later today from the OTC...


Update on May 14, 2009: Click here to view our Flickr photo album from the Offshore Technology Conference.


Jane Van Ryan was formerly senior communications manager and new media advisor at the American Petroleum Institute (API), where she wrote blog posts and produced podcasts and videos. Before coming to API, Jane managed communications for a large science and engineering corporation, and for a top-tier research and engineering university. A few years ago, you might have seen her in your living room when she delivered the news on television. Jane officially retired from API in 2011 and now freelances as an independent communications consultant when not gardening at her farm in Virginia.