Obama Scraps Leases for Oil-Shale Development

Washington Post.

SALT LAKE CITY — In his second reversal of a Bush administration decision, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar said Wednesday that he is scrapping leases for oil-shale development on federal land in Colorado, Utah and Wyoming.

Salazar rescinded a lease offer made last month for research, development and demonstration projects that could have led to oil-shale exploration on 1.9 million acres in the three states.

It was the second time Salazar has reversed the Bush administration. He also halted the leasing of oil and gas drilling parcels near national parks in Utah this month.

I disagree with the President’s approach in terms of domestic energy production. He places more emphasis on more “green” energies, while I place more emphasis on energies that dominate (and will continue to dominate) the world consumption.

I have always advocated increasing domestic energy production with serious research efforts towards green energy. I’m not an arrogant partisan; I know that oil and natural gas will eventually not be feasible, and I want my country to be able to make a relatively painless transition when the time is right.

However, the time is not right. There is a place and time for green technology and fossil fuels. I believe Obama has prematurely abandoned the latter, when the former is not ready for full-scale implementation.

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