Countries around the world are celebrating new oil and natural gas discoveries that hold the promise of greater prosperity for their citizens.
Argentina has just announced a find described by YPF CEO Miguel Galuccio as a “mother rock,” a shale formation that elevates the country to having the third largest shale energy potential behind the United States and China.
The new discovery of a 3.3 billion barrel oil deposit off Norway’s coast cements that nation’s claim to being Europe’s second largest oil producer.
In southwest Poland, San Leon Energy PLC drilled into a dolomite formation and discovered oil as it was cleaning out the well. It is in the process of equipping the well to begin production.
These discoveries and others in Mexico, Egypt, China and elsewhere in August 2012 likely were accomplished using U.S.-developed technologies and will rely on U.S. drilling procedures. And each one is expected to create jobs, increase government revenues, and result in a higher standard of living for people around the world.
Yet here in America, our administration continues to view oil and natural gas development – and U.S.-based technological advances – with hostility. During President Obama’s tenure in office, his administration placed a moratorium on U.S. offshore oil and gas production, refused to approve the Keystone XL pipeline bringing oil from Canada to Gulf Coast refineries, issued a five-year drilling plan that puts 85 percent of the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) off-limits to energy development, and repeatedly proposed to raise taxes on the oil industry, which would have the effect of reducing the industry’s ability to invest in the search for energy.
To its credit at the end of August, the administration finally agreed to allow Shell to drill in Alaska’s Chukchi Sea, but it added conditions that make it unlikely that the company will be able to complete a single well this fall.