Subcommittee on Energy, Climate, and Grid Security Chairman Jeff Duncan (R-SC) and Congressman August Pfluger (R-TX) delivered the following opening remarks today at the Energy Subcommittee Field Hearing in Midland, Texas, on "American Energy Expansion: Improving Local Economies and Communities' Way of Life."
Excerpts and highlights below from Subcommittee Chair Duncan:
BIDEN HAS COMPROMISED OUR ENERGY SECURITY
"This looks a little different than our normal hearing room, but I am excited we are in Midland, Texas for our first energy field hearing.
"I believe field hearings give us unique, "boots on the ground' perspective on how the policies and rhetoric coming out of DC actually impact regulated parties and communities.
"We unfortunately have an administration that has taken a "whole of government approach' to wage war on American energy production.
"President Biden has repeatedly promised to phase the industry out of existence and has followed through by creating uncertainty and issuing regulations to make energy harder to produce and more expensive for consumers.
"The "rush to green agenda' has also compromised our energy security--making us reliant on our adversaries for energy."
RESTORING AMERICAN ENERGY DOMINANCE
"Two years ago, America was energy dominant for the first time since 1952.
"In 2019, we became the number one oil and gas producer in the world. This drove down the cost for consumers at home and benefitted our allies abroad by providing supply as an alternative to Russia and OPEC.
"Much of this success is owed to the innovation and entrepreneurial spirit of the shale revolution, created by hydraulic fracturing in the production of both oil and natural gas. Something this community knows better than anyone.
"Energy and Commerce Republicans have solutions to build off the success of the shale revolution and get us back to energy dominance -- we have a series of bills that aim to unleash innovation by creating regulatory certainty and encouraging long-term investment.
"This is in sharp contrast to the Biden administration and Congressional Democrats who want to make oil and gas production impossible.
"The United States produces oil and gas cleaner and safer than nearly anywhere in the world and we need policies that reflect this reality instead of ones that undercut our success. We need to unleash more American energy.
"I am looking forward to hearing the perspective of our witnesses today, they are the ones who really understand the industry and its impact on communities."
Excerpts and highlights below from Rep. Pfluger, whose district includes Midland, Texas:
THE ROLE MIDLAND PLAYS
"Midland, Texas is where our nation's energy debates should take place.
"And I'm excited that our community gets to showcase how the Permian Basin--and those in the audience today--are indispensable to America's economic and national security.
"Under Chair Rodger's leadership, this Committee is committed to engaging with local communities to understand the challenges the American people are facing--many of which have been inflicted by this administration.
"Thankfully, this city anchors the most important region that is poised to solve many of the critical issues facing our nation, and our world."
THE PATRIOTIC SPIRIT OF THE PERMIAN BASIN
"If you listen to the White House, oil producing regions are greedy and unpatriotic, but nothing could be further from the truth.
"The story of the Permian Basin is one of innovation, unending entrepreneurial spirit, and community.
"In fact, Permian Basin producers have a long history of rising to the occasion.
"Extraordinary cooperation between the US government and American oil companies is what helped win World War II, as Permian crude literally fueled General Patton's infiltration of the German border and eventually the defeat of Hitler.
"It is often quipped that the war was won by an inch, and that's true.
"The US launched two incredible pipeline construction projects: the Big Inch and the Little Big Inch.
"The "Inch Lines' delivered more than 500,000 barrels of Permian oil per day to the Northeast for the war effort and helped successfully safeguard the precious commodity from U-boat attacks.
"These pipelines are still in use today.
"Then again in 2008, another engineering feat allowed Permian Basin producers to rise to the occasion when hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling enabled the US to significantly increase production of oil and natural gas leading to what is infamously known as the shale revolution.
"This put OPEC on its heels--establishing US energy as an invaluable tool for our national security."
THE SHALE REVOLUTION
"The impacts of the shale revolution have been undeniable. In 10 years, production in the Permian has grown from well under 1 million bpd to over 5.4 million bpd presently.
"That is over 40 percent of US production.
"Globally, the share of crude oil production coming from Permian has grown from 1 percent in '07, to nearly 6 percent right now.
"Just like it did throughout World War II, the Permian Basin is doing its part to make this country energy secure--helping fulfill Europe's needs as they wean themselves off Russian gas.
"You cannot understand US energy dominance without visiting the Permian Basin or visiting with local leaders like we are today.
"I am excited for the Committee to hear from our excellent witnesses and discuss how current policies are affecting their operations.
"It is time for Congress to follow the Permian Basin's lead and rise to the occasion."