Forbes contributor David Blackmon wrote an article recently entitled “The Best Energy Policy Is the Least Energy Policy.” In the article, Mr. Blackmon makes many interesting points in regards to the federal government’s energy policy.
The President has focused a great deal of energy trying to pick winners and losers in the energy sector, yet during his State of the Union address, he singled out the natural gas revolution the country has enjoyed while highlighting his administration’s positive role in this boom. This claim is remarkable given the administration’s effort to regulate hydraulic fracturing and their hesitation to expand oil and gas exploration on federal lands, both on shore and off shore. It is important to note that most of the exploration and production of natural gas has taken place on private and state lands where the federal government’s regulatory arm cannot reach.
The President made a great show of claiming to support all-of-the-above energy policy and, as Blackmon points out, the administration continues to ramp up emissions regulations on coal fire power plants and soon others. The President has denied that there is a war on coal and yet scores of power plants have either been closed or have announced that they will close within the next couple of years.
Mr. Blackmon goes on to point out that the President claims he wants to continue to work with the oil and gas industry to make sure production and job growth continue, yet he talks about using his Presidential authority to put more federal lands off limits and increase the tax burden on the energy sector.
If our economy is going to grow and become energy self-sufficient we need the federal government to work with the energy industry to find ways to explore, produce and transport energy in a safe and reliable way. We don’t need the federal government to throw up roadblocks and hurdles and to drive up the cost of energy. As my dad would say, “If you are not part of the solution then you must be the problem!”
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