IN THE NEWS
Even as the U.S. economy continues to struggle – with record unemployment, falling home prices, and rising health care costs – some communities are thriving. Williston, a small city in North Dakota, “has skipped the recession entirely. Unemployment there is less than two percent. The population, the mayor estimates, has grown from 12,000 to 20,000 in the last four years.” Why? The Minneapolis Star Tribune explains:
New drilling technology has freed up vast reserves of oil in the Williston Basin of western North Dakota, fueling an economic bonanza that has become a flat-out gold rush. As the rest of the country desperately tries to skirt a double-dip recession, North Dakota boasts a $1 billion budget surplus and the nation's lowest unemployment rate.
The “economic bonanza” is not limited to North Dakota. It’s happening across America in places like Texas, Louisiana, and Colorado – where, despite impediments imposed by the Obama Administration’s, technological advances are making previously unreachable oil and natural gas deposits in shale rock accessible. According to a recent NPR article, energy security is within our grasp.
Two years ago, America was importing about two thirds of its oil. Today, according to the Energy Information Administration, it imports less than half. And by 2017, investment bank Goldman Sachs predicts the US could be poised to pass Saudi Arabia and overtake Russia as the world's largest oil producer.
Energy development projects like the one in Williston create jobs for millions of Americans and promote American energy security. Nevertheless, the Obama Administration continues to delay and impede shale oil production that would put Americans back to work and help the U.S. break its dependence on unstable foreign sources of energy.
WHAT ARE REPUBLICANS DOING?
The House Energy and Minerals Resources Subcommittee recently conducted a field hearing examining the bureaucratic obstacles to shale oil production in the U.S. House Republicans are committed to removing the President’s unnecessary roadblocks to shale oil development and fostering a predictable regulatory structure for the industry that encourages responsible exploration and job creation.
By putting our country’s abundant natural resources to use, we can lower our debt, break free from our dependence on foreign energy sources, and put Americans back to work. For more on House Republicans’ American Energy initiative, click here.