Our friends at the Manhattan Institute have a new report, written by Senior Fellow Mark P. Mills, which drives home many of the points we’ve made about the positive economic impacts for New Mexico of exporting Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG).
According to the report, the US could eliminate its trade deficit and stimulate the economy to the tune of $600 billion annually through greater exports of energy. What can/should the government do to seize this opportunity?
Executive actions that would lead quickly to major economic benefits and send the right signals to domestic and world markets include:
Approving the application of any and all qualified entities seeking to export natural gas;
Approving the Keystone XL pipeline; and
Directing the Department of Commerce to approve any application to export crude oil.
In the near term, the administration and Congress should work together to:
Encourage private investment in hydrocarbon production.
Direct all relevant federal agencies to identify and resolve unintentional impediments to increased development of refineries, pipelines, and oil and gas production on private lands and, collaterally, avoid imposition of any proposed new rules or regulations on any industries and practices that are already heavily regulated at the state and federal level.
Open up greater access to hydrocarbon resources on federal lands.
Modern technology makes such development safe and environmentally responsible. The federal government controls and restricts access to 50 percent of all onshore hydrocarbon-bearing territory and 100 percent of the offshore territory, wherein 80 percent of that territory is off-limits to exploration or development.
Help the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) set administrative and budget priorities.
The BLM recently announced that it was postponing oil and gas lease auctions on land that it controls in California because of demands on its resources to deal with environmental litigation and because it is “concentrating its limited resources on … other priorities, such as granting renewable energy permits.” Thus, the BLM is giving priority to projects that require federal subsidies resulting in purchases of Chinese solar technology rather than facilitating oil and gas development that is subsidy-free and results in exports to China and other nations.