A Better Way on Energy Policy: An American Success Story

Morning ConsultMorning Consult | September 8, 2016 | Rep. Fred Upton

In a world often confronted with bad news, positive developments are welcome. Our nation’s energy situation is providing such relief to what’s often a drought of good news.

Abundant supply, new technologies, market forces, and wise congressional action are all helping write a new chapter in our nation’s energy story. It’s a narrative the American people need to better understand because it represents a better way to power our nation.

We are currently experiencing a North American energy supply renaissance. Gone are the days of snaking gasoline lines and fears about petro-potentate price gouging. America and our Canadian neighbors have discovered vast new storehouses of oil and natural gas we never knew existed. These immense new supplies span the continent like an energy security belt, stretching from Pennsylvania to North Dakota, from Texas to Canada. Our country is now like a super tanker in the ocean of world oil supply.

These abundant resources keep consumer prices stable as our domestic supplies have continued to grow in recent years.  According to the Energy Information Administration, from 2011 to 2015 the cost of gasoline at the pump bumped around between $3.25 and almost $4.00 per gallon on average nationally. More recently prices have dipped toward $2 per gallon, not cheap, but certainly welcome relief and stability compared to the price from the higher costs and volatility of the past.

It wasn’t always this way. During the late-1970s and early-1980s our energy world was almost as unstable as a banana republic. Petroleum supplies and prices depended on the whims of brash dictators, hostile regimes, and Washington bureaucrats. Our energy policy was a blend of risky business, arrogant government micro management, and naïve hope, a volatile brew that consistently burned consumers in the process.

Read the full op-ed here.

Rep. Fred Upton (R-Mich.) is chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee.