Real Clear Energy | Jim Webb & Jim Nicholson | June 20, 2018
Energy is the driving force for growth and quality of life in every nation, large and small. National security depends on it. Wars have been fought over it. A nation cannot reach or sustain its potential without large-scale access to it. Domestic energy production fills these needs and is a key contributor to a healthy economy. And there are few levers more powerful for a nation’s international position than energy independence.
America’s strategic position has improved in recent years due to an “all-of-the-above” energy policy. But we remain vulnerable in an expanding global economy marked by ever-growing energy needs and potentially troublesome energy alliances, such as Russia’s recent accord with OPEC, that have the potential to manipulate the flow of oil.
It is also undeniable that for the foreseeable future, oil and natural gas will be the greatest drivers of the world’s economies. Here at home, oil and gas are expected to generate over 60 percent of America’s energy for at least the next 30 years, even with the welcome use of renewables continuing to be on the rise.
That said, it is time to correct an oversight in America’s move toward an “all-of-the-above” energy policy: the unnecessarily restrictive approach to the exploration and safe development of oil and natural gas resources that lie offshore.
Offshore oil production is growing around the world, accounting for 25 percent of the world’s crude supply of around 99 million barrels a day. Just in recent years, major offshore discoveries have occurred in Brazil, Guyana, the North Sea, Cyprus, and Mexico. At the same time, due to environmental concerns in the past, our national policies have failed to adjust to the significant advances in exploration, drilling technology, and safety measures that would allow us to conduct research and safely explore and develop all of our existing domestic oil and natural gas resources — including those that lie offshore.
Read the full article here.
Jim Webb is Former Secretary of the Navy and former Democratic Virginia Senator. Jim Nicholson is Former Secretary of Veterans Affairs and Former U.S. Ambassador to the Holy See. They are National Chairs of Explore Offshore.