Skip to comments.GOP pushes plan to open ANWR, expand offshore drilling
Posted on 03/31/2011 11:59:29 AM PDT by thackney
Senate Republicans are making another bid to open the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to drilling but this time they are trying to sweeten the offer by dedicating a quarter of the revenue to renewable energy projects.
The ANWR drilling plan is embedded in energy legislation unveiled Thursday by more than two dozen lawmakers, led by David Vitter of Louisiana and John Cornyn of Texas.
The bill also would restrict environmental groups from filing legal challenges to energy projects, force the government to approve a pipeline that would bring Canadian oil sands crude to the Gulf Coast and clear the path for Shell to begin oil drilling in Arctic waters near Alaska.
This measure will take the boot off the neck of domestic energy producers and unlock our domestic energy potential, Cornyn said.
Sen. Jim DeMint, R-S.C., said the legislation gets Washington out of the way of America developing its own energy resources.
Republicans cast the measure as an immediate balm for rising oil prices, which have been pushed up by unrest in Libya, Egypt and other parts of the Middle East.
But Democrats and administration officials stressed that any new drilling projects even if approved today could take years to produce oil and gas. And even then, the added energy production might not make a difference in oil prices that they insist are set globally.
David Alberswerth, a senior policy adviser at The Wilderness Society, said the Republicans drilling bill puts the foxes in charge of the hen house by effectively ceding control of federal lands to oil and gas companies.
With crude oil above $100 per barrel, both political parties are advancing energy proposals that promise to ease pain at the pump for Americans.
President Barack Obama on Wednesday pitched his plans for slashing U.S. oil imports by a third over the next 14 years, including support for natural gas-powered vehicles and stronger fuel-efficiency requirements for cars.
House Republicans have unveiled bills that would expand domestic drilling. A House Natural Resources subcommittee is set to hold a hearing on the leading legislation by Rep. Doc Hastings, R-Wash., next Wednesday.
Although the House is expected to pass pro-drilling legislation, the chances in the Democratically controlled Senate are much slimmer. And proposals to tap ANWR have always been political hot potatoes.
But Vitter said he thinks the political pressure from rising gasoline prices could change the dynamic on Capitol Hill.
Wait and watch, he said. As the price at the pump goes to four dollars, . . . attitudes can change pretty quickly. We saw that in the summer of 2008, and I think were about to see that again.
Plans to open the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to drilling are perennials on Capitol Hill, offered every time gasoline prices rise. Drilling advocates say opening the refuge would give the U.S. access to an estimated 11 billion barrels of oil in the region. But environmentalists say the oil gains would be small, especially given the risks of damage to wildlife and habitat.
In recent years, Republicans have tried new tactics to make ANWR drilling more attractive. The latest gambit, by Alaskas senators Republican Lisa Murkowski and Democrat Mark Begich would have allowed oil companies to use new horizontal drilling techniques to explore the refuges reserves, as long as their footprint was not within the federally protected area.
The measure introduced by Vitter and Cornyn today would dedicate 25 percent of oil and gas royalties from ANWR drilling to a trust fund for alternative and renewable energy development.
I hate these traitors.
Who owns that oil? Can Congress just take the revenue from the project and throw it away on silly Lib schemes? If the Fed has a right to it then use the revenues to pay down the debt.
Royalties from Federal Land or Water goes to the Federal Government.
If ANWR was State land, it would have went into oil production 3 decades ago.
This is the standard claptrap the Dems trot out because, to them, if it doesn't produce results before the next election, they want no part of it. So, let's stand here and do nothing...ever. Let's just ship our wealth to the Arabs forever and, when they stick it to us even moreso down the road, we can finger-point the blame to someone else but still have the same problems. For Heaven's sake, politicians, get off your collective asses and start working on the problem TODAY. I don't really care if you're not in office when the new pipeline comes online. You clowns don't have the stones to do ANYTHING other than spend MY money on things I don't want. Now, get back to work on something I do want...primarily for the gov't to get the hell out of the way and let's start producing some energy once again.
Latest GALLUP Shows Majority Support for ANWR
A March 14th 2011 Gallup public opinion poll shows a majority of those surveyed supported exploration in the 10-02 area of ANWR. The results to the question, do you think the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska should or should not be opened up or oil exploration, were: 49% of respondents said yes, should; 45% said no, should not and 6% had no opinion of the issue when asked. The poll was taken on March 3rd -6th 2011 of a random national sampling of 1,021 adults by telephone.
Pretty crazy to see oil price goes up on the fear Libya oil would come off the market but claim actually adding a million or so barrels a day would have no effect.
Rather than pi$$ing around with things you KNOW you can’t get done, why don’t you DE-FUND HusseinCare, the ACLU, Planned Parenthood, NPR and the like...you know, things you DO have the power to do. Could it be that as limp-wristed weasels, you want to make it APPEAR you are actually doing something, while remaining scared to death of annoying the NY Times and the Republican hierarchy should you REALLY do something?
I still can’t believe the amount of people that are just taking it as a fact that we must pay more for energy and stop exploration. Some of the things I’ve read recently boggle the mind. Public school have done a great job indoctrinating the young minds full of mush.
Good picture, since it shows what ANWR really looks like. The Sierra Club, however, has tried to make it look like some resort area you might find in Colorado. Even during summer, about the only thing that lives there are mosquitos. The fact is, ANWR is about the size of South Carolina and the proposed drilling sites wanted for leases is about the size of the LA airport. Seems to me that ANWR isn’t going to be a tourist hotbed anytime soon, unless there is a polar shift, and I really don’t have the time to wait around for that. My sentiment on the subject: Tell the Sierra Club to shove it and tell the politicians I can’t drive to work without gas in my tank. And, come to think of it, perhaps you could cut spending and taxes so people can get back to work.
Potential Oil Production from the Coastal Plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge: Updated Assessment
The USGS economic analysis of the ANWR 1002 Area calculates that once oil has been discovered, more than 80 percent of the technically recoverable oil is commercially developable at an oil price of $25 per barrel. In general, it is assumed that production from Alaska (including ANWR) would reduce oil imports by an equal amount. The imported refiner acquisition cost in 2020 is projected in EIAs Annual Energy Outlook 2000 reference case to be $22.04 (1998 dollars). At this price, the potential ANWR oil recovered would have a value between $125 and $350 billion (in 1998 dollars.)
Why flush 25% of anything valuable down the drain?
So we can get 75% of something instead of 100% of nothing.
Plus the oil goes into production and reduces our imports.
I wish them luck, but won’t hold my breath.
I guess the only saving grace is that we are talking tax revenue, which pretty much all gets flushed down the drain anyway.
So it’s probably not a bad deal overall in order to open ANWR.
I put the odds of this deal happening at 5%. The only other good news is that when we finally drill all the possible areas, which we will eventually, the oil will be worth even more in today’s dollars, so ANWR and other American-held oil resources represent money in the bank.
I wouldn’t call that a dedication of revenue. More like the payment of tribute.
You would think someone in Washington would point out what you just did.
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