Congressman Boozman is committed to helping provide relief at the pump. It's the number one concern he's heard from you and he wants you to know where he stands on this issue. If you would like to get updates on energy issues please click here to sign up.
Boozman Bulletin: Energy
Luckily we’re not paying the national average of $4.06 when we're filling up in Arkansas, but as the average price for a gallon of regular gas nears $4 in the Natural State, it’s taking a toll on our budgets and we’re forced to stretch our dollar more than ever.
Budgets all across the state are feeling the same strains. The Benton County Sheriff’s Department changed its patrol routes in an effort to reduce fuel costs, Fort Smith’s Parks Department implemented plans to make sure its crews are more efficient with the vehicles and the State Highway Department blamed the increase in gasoline prices for having to increase its budget. That doesn’t even skim the surface of the stories you’ve told me.
The reality of rising gas prices is a costly reminder of how dependent the U.S. is on foreign oil. To alleviate the pain we’re feeling at the pump Congress needs to encourage more production of U.S. resources. This is the only developed country in the world that refuses to use its natural resources. Opening up Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR), building refineries and more nuclear power plants as well as opening offshore drilling are all things Congress seriously needs to consider to help increase our domestic energy supply.
President Bush recently lifted an executive ban on offshore drilling. This is a great step and one that a clear majority of Americans are supporting. A recent Reuters/Zogby Poll found that 60% of Americans surveyed say they favor efforts to increase domestic drilling and refinery construction. This is a realistic approach that isn’t being taken advantage of. Minerals Management Service (MMS), an office of the U.S. Department of the Interior estimates only 3% of this country’s 1.76 billion acres Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) is leased for oil and gas exploration and development and more than 86 billion barrels of oil exists in undiscovered fields. At a time when we’re strapped for oil and gas, this is an area we must tap into.
There is no time like today to pass legislation to fully utilize the resources of this country. I’m a proponent of increasing the supply of domestic energy and have continually cosponsored and voted on legislation that aims to make us more energy independent. It’s in our best interest to bring legislation to the House Floor to give us what we need most, a break from high fuel prices.
Members of the House of Representatives have been challenged to sign a pledge that states "I will vote to increase U.S. oil production to lower gas prices for Americans,” and I gladly signed on. In encourage my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to support this issue. The hardships the high cost of fuel is causing isn’t a partisan issue, it’s a matter of wellbeing and I’m ready and willing to take immediate action.
Click here to read more of Congressman Boozman’s opinion on energy.
Boozman’s Plan to Help Lower Gas Prices Savings
Bring onshore oil online (ANWR, Shale) $.70 - $1.60
Bring deepwater oil online (OCS)
Bring news refineries online (none since 1976) $.15 - $0.45
Halt oil shipments to SPR
In 2007, the United States consumed over 142 billion gallons of gasoline.
Source: Energy Information Administration