In a post for The Hill’s Congress Blog, Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX), defended the conservative energy bill, saying, “I am sick of people saying it’s about oil.” He should tell that to the employees of right-wing think tanks shouting, “Drill! Drill! Drill!” outside the Capitol, and to the oil and gas executives who have given Gohmert $185,663 in campaign contributions over his career.
Gohmert writes enthusiastically about the prospects for increasing the domestic supply of natural gas:
Some people have told me that we could get gas from the InterContinental Shelf within a couple years. . . . We have at least the second highest amount of natural gas off the InterContinental Shelf. Maybe when we get to exploring we’ll find that we have the most. But it’s ridiculous not to use it while we’ve got it.
There is, of course, no such thing as as the “InterContinental Shelf.” Gohmert is evidently referring to the Outer Continental Shelf, but it’s worrisome that a supposed expert on energy issues doesn’t know his geography.
Furthermore, the vast majority of natural gas reserves on the OCS are already available for leasing. And the fact is that a reckless “use it while we’ve got it” policy towards fossil fuels will lead to global ecological catastrophe.
Ironically, Gohmert writes:
But the trouble is around the world and historically, any nation whose economy is struggling, puts the environment on the backburner.
He’s right. The “Drill Here, Drill Now” agenda not only puts the environment on the backburner, it sets it on fire. It’s time for a new direction, with an energy policy that recognizes a healthy environment is key to a strong economy.