EIA Energy Projections Show Need For Policy Changes

01 25, 2012 by Oil and Gas Online

API's President and CEO Jack Gerard welcomed the U.S. Energy Information Administration's new projection that the U.S. will increase domestic production of both oil and natural gas by 2035. But with changes in policy, he said, America's oil and natural gas industry could produce at home far more of the energy the nation requires, further enhancing its energy security and providing very large benefits to the economy.

"The increases in domestic oil and gas production forecast by EIA will mean added jobs, revenue and energy security," said Gerard. "This is progress, but it falls far short of what we could do with greater access to domestic supplies and sounder regulatory policies. We hope the administration will look at the numbers and do what we've been asking them to do for a long time: work with us to produce at home even more of the oil and natural gas our nation will require."

Gerard said America has huge supplies of untapped oil and natural gas to develop. However, according to EIA's just released Annual Energy Outlook 2012, current policies will still leave America importing 37 percent of its liquid fuels in 2035 – or about seven million barrels of oil a day. At today's prices, that is almost three-quarters of a billion dollars a day we would be sending to foreign suppliers.

"Without a course correction favoring substantially more domestic oil and natural gas development," Gerard said, "we could be hemorrhaging U.S. wealth, jobs and economic activity for decades to come."

More development of U.S. oil and natural gas resources through increased access, a common sense regulatory structure, a return to pre-moratorium permitting rates, and more imports of secure Canadian crude could by 2035 create as many as 1.4 million jobs, generate $800B in additional revenue for our government, and substantially boost U.S. oil and natural gas production, according to a 2011 Wood Mackenzie analysis.