The People of America's Oil and Natural Gas Indusry

The President’s Almost None-Of-The-Above Energy Approach

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted February 24, 2012

The president spoke about energy again Thursday, saying his all-sources strategy will ensure a prosperous future:

“If we’re going to avoid being at the mercy of these world events, we’ve got to have a sustained, all-of-the-above strategy that develops every available source of American energy.”

The president is right: A sustained strategy that uses all of America’s energy sources is the key to U.S. energy security. API President and CEO Jack Gerard:

“More oil and gas development here at home would benefit the nation. It would increase the security of our energy supplies, create jobs, boost revenue tour government and help put downward pressure on prices at the pump.”

Ah, but the president’s so-called all-of-the-above strategy actually appears to be an almost-none-of-the-above strategy. In a speech in Florida, he dismissed calls for increased domestic oil drilling:

“You know there are no quick fixes to this problem, and you know we can’t just drill our way to lower prices.”


“Anybody who tells you we can drill our way out of this problem doesn’t know what they’re talking about — or just isn’t telling you the truth.”

This administration is talking a big game on energy – even claiming credit for domestic oil and natural gas production increases that stem from decisions made long before it came into office. Indeed, those gains have come in spite of the president’s policies, not because of them. And his rhetoric on drilling suggests ignorance or disdain for analysis that shows, yes, we could see 100 percent of our liquid fuel needs met with North American sources of oil by 2024.


“The administration is restricting where oil and natural gas development may occur, leasing less often, shortening lease terms, going slow on permit approvals and increasing or threatening to increase industry’s development costs through higher taxes, higher royalty fees, higher minimum lease bids and more regulations.”

More Gerard:

“Keeping 85 percent of our offshore areas off limits – per the administration’s latest offshore energy plan – is not a prescription for increased oil and natural gas production. Decreasing oil and gas leasing in the Rockies by 70 percent is not generating jobs and more affordable energy that America’s workers and consumers need. Having 10 federal agencies planning more regulation of hydraulic fracturing … is not keeping affordable supplies of gas flowing to generate electricity, heat homes and supply chemical plants. Rejecting the Keystone XL pipeline is not increasing American access to affordable, secure energy.”

Current energy conditions, globally and domestically, are pulling the veil away from the president’s do-little energy policies. You can’t reject the Keystone XL pipeline, for example, then say the United States is at the mercy of the volatility in global energy markets. You can’t keep U.S. energy on federal lands and offshore off limits and say you’re for increased domestic oil and natural gas production. You can’t say yours is an all-of-the-above strategy when you’re denying multiple opportunities to industries that supply the majority of the energy we currently use.


“The administration’s own projections tell us that we’re still going to rely on oil and natural gas for nearly 60 percent of our energy for the next quarter century. We’re either going to produce that oil and gas in the U.S. with the added benefits of creating over a million new American jobs, strengthening our national security and generating more revenue for our government, or we’re going to depend more on resources from less stable parts of the world.”


Mark Green joined API after a career in newspaper journalism, including 16 years as national editorial writer for The Oklahoman in the paper’s Washington bureau. Mark also was a reporter, copy editor and sports editor. He earned his journalism degree from the University of Oklahoma and master’s in journalism and public affairs from American University. He and his wife Pamela live in Occoquan, Va., where they enjoy their four grandchildren.