Washington, D.C. – Responding to the Obama administration’s reversal of its initial plans to open up the Atlantic Coast to offshore oil production, Robbie Diamond, President and CEO of Securing America’s Future Energy (SAFE), joined General James Conway, 34th Commandant of the U.S. Marine Corps (Ret.) and co-Chair of SAFE’s Energy Security Leadership Council, to issue the following statement:
“Achieving lasting American energy security requires a long-term, comprehensive vision,” said Diamond. “Today’s announcement by the Obama administration to roll back its plan to open portions of the Atlantic to offshore oil production shows a lack of foresight, made more convenient by a period of low oil prices we know from experience cannot last. This action by the White House is the political equivalent of unilateral disarmament on energy security for the United States.”
“The decision to prevent offshore oil production in the Atlantic is shortsighted and should be reconsidered by the next administration,” added General Conway. “It is imperative that we have a prudent energy strategy that includes enhanced domestic production of petroleum. Having served for decades in the military, I have no doubt a balance can be struck between oil production and military operations offshore without jeopardizing either of these efforts.”
“Oil prices will rise again. Already, over $380 billion in investment in future production has been sidelined by the current oil price slump,” said Diamond. “While consumers have undoubtedly benefited at the pump from cheaper gas, this dwindling investment is sowing the seeds for a future supply crunch and subsequent price spike. By preventing the United States from using its own abundant natural resources, the Obama administration is only ensuring we will be unprepared in the face of continued oil price volatility and growing geopolitical instability—with the potential to cause severe economic damage.”
“True energy security requires a strategic approach to both the demand and supply sides of the equation—promoting the next-generation technologies that will reduce America’s dependence on oil, like electric vehicles and more efficient engines, while using our resources here at home to protect our balance of trade and reduce our reliance on imports, often from some of the world’s most unstable regions,” Diamond added. “By barring zones like the Mid- and Southern Atlantic, as well as the Eastern Gulf of Mexico, from offshore production, we only expose ourselves more to the vagaries of a volatile global oil market over which we have limited control.”
About Securing America’s Future Energy (SAFE)
Securing America’s Future Energy (SAFE) is a nonpartisan organization that aims to reduce America’s dependence on oil and improve U.S. energy security to bolster national security and strengthen the economy. SAFE advocates for expanded domestic production of U.S. oil and gas resources, continued improvements in fuel efficiency, and in the long-term, breaking oil’s stranglehold on the transportation sector through alternatives like natural gas for heavy-duty trucks and plug-in electric vehicles. In 2006, SAFE joined with General P.X. Kelley (Ret.), 28th Commandant of the U.S. Marine Corps, and Frederick W. Smith, Chairman, President, and CEO of FedEx Corporation, to form the Energy Security Leadership Council (ESLC), a group of business and former military leaders committed to reducing U.S. oil dependence.
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