Heritage Foundation on Energy & Oil



Withdraw from Paris Climate agreement & rely on innovation

President Trump has fulfilled a key campaign pledge. The Paris Agreement, which committed the US to drastically reducing greenhouse gas emissions, was a truly bad deal. Here are four reasons Trump was right to withdraw.
  1. The Paris Agreement was costly and ineffective--$2.5 trillion in gross domestic product by the year 2035.
  2. The agreement wasted taxpayer money. The Obama administration ended up shipping $1 billion in taxpayer dollars to corrupt governments, not those who actually need it.< li>Withdrawal is a demonstration of leadership. The media is making a big to-do about the fact that the only countries not participating in the Paris Agreement are Syria and Nicaragua. But misery loves company, including North Korea and Iran, who are signatories of the deal.
  3. Withdrawal is good for American energy competitiveness. The best way for American energy companies to be competitive is to be innovative, not build their business models around international agreements.
    Source: Heritage Action "Paris Agreement" voting recommendation , Jun 1, 2017

    Drill for oil & gas in offshore OCS & Eastern Gulf of Mexico

    The US has become the de facto leader of the world with regard to energy development. Most of this increase in energy production has come on private lands, as the federal government has continually made things much more difficult in terms of permitting and other regulatory roadblocks. Despite this, the Gulf of Mexico continues to be a very important asset for our energy future and it continues to produce significant amounts of oil and natural gas. Yet the Eastern Gulf of Mexico has not participated to this point despite its significant potential. A 2014 Heritage Foundation report said: "Excessive regulations and bureaucratic inefficiencies have stymied oil production and prevented the full effects of the energy boom. Opening up the rest of the Outer Continental Shelf to exploration and oil production would allow this to occur." Congress should not put any additional barriers in place and allow the U.S. to continue to reap the immense benefits of our energy dominance.
    Source: Heritage Action 2015-16 voting recommendation on HR5538 , Jul 13, 2016

    Eliminate $100M for Diesel Emission Reduction program

    Heritage Action recommends voting YES on House amendment to H.R. 5538, the Interior & Environment Agencies Appropriations bill for FY 2017. This amendment would eliminate funding for the Diesel Emission Reduction Grant program, which would save taxpayers $100 million.

    This program was originally authorized in the Energy Policy Act of 2005 and then was reauthorized again in 2010, however this latest authorization expires at the end of FY 2016. Despite the fact that the program is unlikely to be reauthorized before the end of the fiscal year, the Appropriations Committee provides $100 million in the base bill regardless, which is $50 million more than the committee provided in the House base bill in the previous fiscal year and $50 million more than provided in the omnibus in December.

    Source: Heritage Action 2015-16 voting recommendation on HR5538 , Jul 12, 2016

    Environmental fracking via local decision on Marcellus Shale

    Saving the environment and producing shale oil and gas by hydraulic fracturing (fracking) are not mutually exclusive. The Center for Sustainable Shale Development (CSSD) [proposes this] model:
    1. The program is voluntary and requires concessions from both parties with benefits for both as well. The most successful environmental policies have been accomplished when the freedom of individuals is preserved.
    2. The CSSD was put together using the expertise of people directly and geographically connected to the Marcellus shale development. Nothing can replace the experience and knowledge of those who stand to gain (or lose) the most by success.
    3. The CSSD aims to meet the unique concerns and conditions of the Appalachian region, rather than tackle shale development across the nation.
    This is how Americans solve problems--not from top-down regulations or one-size-fits-all rules, but individuals working to find ways to solve them.
    Source: Katie Tubb on 2013 campaign website blog.heritage.org , Mar 26, 2013

    Carbon tax would hurt economy but not reduce global warming

    An anti-carbon tax amendment [is in the Senate]. It is important to stress why enacting a carbon tax would be economically devastating and environmentally meaningless. A carbon tax that starts at $25 and rises by 5% per year would:Proponents of a carbon tax may argue that's a small price to pay to save the planet, but the reality is that it's an exorbitant price to pay to not have any impact on climate change whatsoever. Unilaterally reducing greenhouse gases would not make a dent on global emissions and only moderate temperatures a few tenths of a degree.
    Source: Nicolas Loris on 2013 campaign website blog.heritage.org , Mar 21, 2013

    CO2 restrictions threaten property rights & economic freedom

    A major threat to private property rights and economic freedom today arises from policies that restrict CO2. A colorless, odorless, nontoxic gas and a byproduct of, or necessary nutrient for, all living organisms on Earth, CO2 has none of the characteristics of conventional pollutants. The list of enacted and proposed constraints on emissions of CO2 is long, and the costs are certain and enormous for the economy, individual liberty, and the environment. Yet the benefits are uncertain and the expected impact on climate negligible.

    As environmental problems become ever more complex, the limitations and vast costs of political solutions centered in Washington will become ever more apparent. The most promising solutions to environmental challenges will arise from a greater reliance on local knowledge and property rights. These would encourage a more efficient use of resources, responsible and effective stewardship, and technological innovation.

    Source: 2013 campaign website heritage.org, "Commentary" , Jan 25, 2013

    When it comes to energy policy, the free market works

    Writing for the Heritage Foundation, Nicolas Loris, policy analyst at the Thomas A. Roe Institute for Economic Policy Studies, states:

    "The reality is that when it comes to energy policy, the free market works. Indeed, the business environment for energy is robust despite seemingly endless forays by policymakers and bureaucrats into the energy industry. But those attempts to control energy markets do have an effect: They result in higher prices, fewer available energy sources, reduced competition, and stifled innovation.

    "By attempting to force government-developed technologies into the market, the government diminishes the role of the entrepreneur and crowds out private-sector investment. Thus, almost without exception, it fails in some way."

    Source: Tea Party Patriots, by M.Meckler & J.B.Martin, p. 55 , Feb 14, 2012

    Allow state control of energy resources on federal lands.

    Huffington opposes Federal Land Freedom Act

    Congressional Summary:Authorizes a state to establish a program covering the leasing and permitting processes, regulatory requirements, and any other provisions by which the state would exercise its rights to develop all forms of energy resources on available federal land in the state.

    Proponent's argument for bill: (The Heritage Foundation): This important piece of legislation would allow state control of energy resources on federal lands. America has harnessed technological advances in recent years in drilling and extracting energy resources that have caused a surge in domestic oil and gas in several areas of the country. Most of that production has occurred on private and state-owned lands, not federal lands where output has been on decline. The benefits of transferring power to the states over their own energy decisions: States have an interest in both boosting their economies by tapping into the energy resources available to them and protecting the environment. More importantly, they are best suited to fulfill these two goals, not the federal government.

    Opponent's argument against bill:(The Wilderness Society): Oil and gas development can do serious damage to wildlands and waters, especially when it takes place in sensitive areas. The federal government began leasing public lands for energy development in 1920. We see energy development as a valid use of some public lands, but there are some wild places that must be protected. We work to ensure that the most stringent environmental precautions are applied when oil and gas development occurs on our public lands and that development does not happen in fragile wild areas. The Wilderness Society also makes sure that our most ecologically sensitive areas, such as the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, remain permanently off limits to oil and gas companies.

    Source: H.R.2511/S.1233 13-S1233 on Jun 26, 2013

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