Not that you needed any more of it, of course. But with energy prices stifling the American economy and driving us into a recession, and with virtually every economist worth listening to screaming that the Biden administration has got to signal to the oil and gas industry that it can profitably increase production without political risk, it should be a no-brainer that Team Biden would encourage domestic drilling.
But it absolutely refuses to do so. Take, for example, the Gulf of Mexico.
The Biden administration has released a preliminary proposal that could prohibit oil and gas leases in the Gulf of Mexico for the next five years, though it will undergo a lengthy public comment period and congressional review before it’s finalized.
“From day one, President Biden and I have made clear our commitment to transition to a clean energy economy,” Interior Secretary Deb Haaland said in a statement Friday. “Today, we put forward an opportunity for the American people to consider and provide input on the future of offshore oil and gas leasing. The time for the public to weigh in on our future is now.”
The Department of Interior on Friday released a draft plan for proposed lease sales for the outer continental shelf for the next five years, as required by the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act adopted in 1978.
The federal law requires a five-year plan to allow oil and gas companies to bid for drilling and extracting in offshore waters, and the proposal announced Friday will replace an Obama-era plan that was implemented in 2017 and expired on Thursday.
“The Proposed Program includes no more than 10 potential sales in the Gulf of Mexico and one potential lease sale in the northern portion of the Cook Inlet Planning Area offshore Alaska, which is the same as in the five year program finalized in 2016,” according to an Interior announcement.
“These potential lease sales, including in the GOM, could be further refined and targeted, based on public input and analysis, prior to program approval,” the announcement read. “The Final Program also may include fewer potential lease sales, including no lease sales.”
In 2018, the Trump administration prioritized those lease sales. It proposed 47 sales across 25 of the 26 outer continental shelf planning areas. That proposal didn’t actually go forward because of the stink the environmentalist Left made during the public comment period.
Reaction to this hasn’t been particularly positive.
House Committee on Natural Resources Ranking Member Bruce Westerman, R-Ark., blasted the Biden administration for releasing the notice on the eve of a holiday weekend, and for the potential impact of the proposal on Americans struggling with sky-high energy prices.
“DOI’s statement that the final plan may contain zero lease sales is deeply concerning and would be unprecedented. This administration continues demolishing access to American resources, and we are paying the price at the pump, at the grocery store, and in our family budgets,” Westerman said. “There is absolutely no reasonable explanation why we cannot tap into our resources here at home and at least have a plan heading in the right direction to ease soaring energy costs. This administration adds a new dimension to incompetence and worse than that, they are unwilling to listen to anyone who can help them do the right thing.”
Westerman stressed that the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act directs the Department of Interior to develop a plan that will “best meet national energy needs for the five year period following its approval.”
Louisiana Congressman Garret Graves noted that federal officials “literally had years” to craft a new five-year plan and the failure to do so before the previous one expired will have a serious negative impact on how Louisiana funds hurricane, coastal and flood protection projects.
“This is the first time there has ever been a lapse in the program,” he said. “Their self-imposed delays are contributing to higher prices, less certainty and more dependence on Iran, Venezuela and others.”
It isn’t like this is incompetence. This is deliberate. It’s in pursuit of policies Biden announced when he was running for president. Once he got the Democrat nomination he toned down the discussion of his war on domestic oil and gas, but a few times he was dumb enough to mention it. And as soon as he was inaugurated the war began.
The American people get it. They hear him when he babbles about the transformation of our economy into something that runs on “renewables,” which is tantamount to rolling back the Industrial Revolution.
It’s treason, is what it is. We were energy independent. Now, Biden is selling the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to China, who would almost assuredly be the opposition in the next major war we found ourselves in for which the SPR was constructed in the first place. And he’s standing in the way of producing oil where we know it exists, with world-class infrastructure to get it out of the sea floor safely and efficiently.
There is no secret here. You’re paying your last dollar at the pump because Joe Biden wants you to, and our economy is going to crash because he’s bringing it on. Just remember that when you next vote and don’t be distracted by whatever shiny objects his party wants to bring forward.