After witnessing President Obama's State of the Union address on Tuesday evening, Congressman James Lankford (R-OK) remarked on the accuracy of the President's comments about American shale gas production and his requirement for full chemical disclosure resulting from the fracking process.
"After years of working against traditional American energy sources both on land and offshore--including moratoriums on drilling and regulations that stifle exploration--and rejecting as recently as last week the Keystone XL pipeline and the security it would afford America, it was good to hear the President promote traditional American energy sources," said Congressman Lankford.
"The President has finally acknowledged a fact that we in Oklahoma and other natural gas producing states have known for a long time: natural gas is a safe, clean and plentiful American energy source that we need to fully explore right away," continued Congressman Lankford. "Private sector innovation has recently combined horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing to crack the shale code. Oklahoma has been a leader in safely extracting this crucial resource since the 1940s. The private sector, not federal energy bureaucrats, broke the first ground on shale gas well over 60 years ago.
"But we are making progress. In his State of the Union address three years ago, the President did not mention natural gas. Last year, he mentioned it once in a listing of energy sources available to America. To hear him actually recognize and promote the potential of natural gas exploration is a bold step forward for President Obama -- even though he still has a lot to learn about its safety and history.
Regarding the President's push for full chemical disclosure of the fracking process, Congressman Lankford said, "The President wants something that the private sector and states are already volunteering to do. More than 100 shale gas companies are already disclosing the chemicals they use through www.fracfocus.org, a publicly accessible website. If the President truly acknowledges that we still have work ahead of us to make natural gas available to all Americans, he needs to take action that encourages the private sector by allowing them to continue to safely produce it and keeping federal bureaucracy out of the way.