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February 4, 2013

HEARING PREVIEW: IER's Hutzler to Testify on U.S. Energy Potential

February 4, 2013
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IER Distinguished Senior Fellow and former acting EIA administrator Mary Hutzler will testify on Tuesday, February 5, 2013 at 10:00AM before the House Subcommittee on Energy and Power. The hearing will focus on “American Energy Security and Innovation: An Assessment of North America’s Energy Resources”. Hutzler’s testimony will evaluate North America’s vast energy resources and assail the federal energy policies that continue to deny access to those resources and stifle economic growth and job creation. Highlights from the testimony include:

 “The United States has more combined oil, coal, and natural gas resources than any other country on the planet. As we used these energy resources over the past 50 years, not only did we grow our economy and improve our quality of life, but we improved our air quality as well.”

“We are energy rich, not poor . . . The real question is whether the federal government will permit us to have access to our abundant energy resources, not whether sufficient resources exist.”

“Increased energy production promotes jobs, government revenues from taxes and lease sales, and increased economic activity.”

“The reason for the boom in both oil and natural gas production in the United States today is that our oil and gas industry was able to revolutionize drilling and production from shale formations by combining hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling technology . . . When combined with the incredible advances in computer interpretative capabilities, an energy miracle is afoot.”

“Lower energy prices benefit the entire economy, but especially the economically disadvantaged and those on fixed incomes. Expanded energy production resulting in lower prices is thus a benefit to society. The increase in hydraulic fracturing, however, has led to attacks on natural gas production. Many special interest groups have launched anti-hydraulic fracturing campaigns, claiming that is a new, dangerous technology that contaminates groundwater. But the reality is far different.”

“The Keystone XL pipeline would not only move Canadian oil but it would also help to move oil from areas in the United States where it is land-locked, such as shale oil production in North Dakota and crude oil stored at Cushing, Oklahoma . . . . The U.S. government has delayed, denied and delayed again its approval.”

“Developing oil and natural gas production on federal lands is becoming more difficult and time consuming. As a result, oil production is decreasing in the federally-controlled offshore areas and Alaska, but increasing on state and privately-controlled onshore areas.”

“If more oil is not allowed to be produced soon from Alaska, the Trans Alaskan Pipeline System, one of North America’s most valuable energy assets, will be at risk. The pipeline, which once delivered 2.1 million barrels of oil per day to the West Coast, now has sufficient underutilized capacity to accommodate twice the amount of oil that is currently being produced in North Dakota, the second largest oil producing state in the Union.  There is no lack of oil in Alaska or off its coasts; the problem is that government policies stand in the way of additional oil production in Alaska.”

“As technology continues to advance, coal-fired power plants will become even cleaner and air quality will continue to improve . . . An irony of our current regulatory policy may be that China will ultimately become the world’s supplier of the most advanced clean coal plants, despite the U.S. coal resource base which dwarfs their own.”

To read the full testimony, click here. (PDF).

Tomorrow’s hearing can be seen live on the Energy and Commerce website.

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