Op-Eds

TRI-CITY RECORD: Rising Gas Prices Underscore Urgent Need to Develop North American Energy

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Washington, DC, Mar 1, 2012 | Meghan Kolassa ((202) 225-3761) | comments
By Rep. Fred Upton -

It is only the beginning of March, and already gas prices for Michigan families are well on their way to $4 per gallon – and at the rate things are going, experts predict that we could be seeing $5-per-gallon gas in no short time.  Every year, rising prices serve as a painful reminder of the need for a long-term energy strategy that emphasizes increased North American energy production.

The fact is, when it comes to energy production, we need it all.  That is why I have long championed an “all of the above” energy strategy that puts an emphasis back on American production.  Whether it is developing our nation’s vast resources – like oil, coal, or natural gas – promoting safe nuclear, or advancing alternative technologies like wind, solar, and hydro, we can simultaneously create jobs, reduce our reliance on foreign suppliers, and help keep energy costs down for Michigan families and businesses.

Time and again the Obama administration has touted the untold benefits of North American energy, but most of those resources still remain under lock and key today.  For example, construction of the 1,700-mile Keystone XL pipeline would allow for the safe transportation of energy resources in Alberta, Canada to refineries here in the United States.  Experts predict the Keystone pipeline would bring nearly 1 million barrels of oil to the United States each day as well as create tens of thousands of good-paying, private-sector jobs.

Projects like Keystone should be obvious solutions for the United States, but instead American jobs and energy security are repeatedly left hanging in the balance.  This is simply unacceptable – Michigan families and businesses deserve better and will not stand for policy decisions that put politics ahead of commonsense solutions.

Without increased production, gas prices have nowhere to go but up.  It is time to seize our energy future by taking action today and putting a premium back on American energy.

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