Western Caucus Members Participate in Field Hearing on the Importance of Domestic Energy Production

“Federal Energy Production Supports Local Communities”

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Yesterday, the House Committee on Natural Resources hosted a field hearing in Odessa, Texas, on the importance of federal energy production for rural communities in the West. Congressional Western Caucus Vice Chairs Bruce Westerman (AR-04), Pete Stauber (MN-08), and Tom Tiffany (WI-07) and Western Caucus Member August Pfluger (TX-11) participated.

“There’s no reason, no reason whatsoever, that the President of the United States should ever go to Saudi Arabia or Venezuela, or God forbid Russia, or any other place to ask them to make up the supply of energy that we could be producing here at home,” said House Natural Resources Committee Chair and Western Caucus Vice Chair Bruce Westerman. “There should never be another time in our future when the President of the United States depletes the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to lower prices instead of focusing on the real economic issue, and that’s low supply.”

“We have been endowed with the greatest resources in the world, we can use them to keep costs down and lever an international geopolitical advantage,” said House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources Chair and Western Caucus Vice Chair Pete Stauber. “Unfortunately, even when American operators do it the cleanest in the world and provide tens of millions of dollars to schools, this administration has decreed that oil and gas operators must lose in New Mexico.”

“For those people that are chasing the ‘Green Fantasy,’ the Permian is a problem, and you should smile every day when you go to work knowing that you’re stopping people who want to impoverish Americans with higher energy prices,” said House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Federal Lands Chair and Western Caucus Vice Chair Tom Tiffany. “I hope you smile every day as you continue that robust production in the Permian because you are standing up for the people of the United States of America.”

“When looking to supply the energy needs for Americans—our President’s first call should have been to Odessa, Texas—not OPEC+,” said Rep. August Pfluger. “The Permian Basin is the largest secure supply of oil and gas in the entire world and remains a safe harbor of stability and opportunity. Our nation has the energy resources necessary for generations to come thanks to the Permian. However, the region cannot meet the moment without investments to match its strategic importance. By investing in the Permian Basin, America invests in its future—keeping our energy abundant, our economy strong, and our nation secure.”

These Congressional Western Caucus Members and House Natural Resources Republicans heard from three witnesses during the field hearing:

  • Tracee Bentley, President and CEO, Permian Strategic Partnership
  • The Honorable David Gallegos, New Mexico State Senator, District 41
  • Doug Ackerman, President and CEO, New Mexico Oil & Gas Association

“We are in the midst right here of the world’s largest and most secure supply of energy,” said Tracee Bentley. “When we hear rhetoric from Washington, DC, that that’s not important anymore, you can imagine the effect that it has on a region like ours, and of course across the country. But the truth of the matter is, we know that the world is going to need our energy for decades and decades to come, so we keep at it.”

“Right now, we’re spending money recklessly throughout the state because we have an abundance, because of oil and gas,” said Sen. David Gallegos. “You take that out, we’re going to go back to what we’ve historically done, taking money from schools, from public safety, because you have to find some places you can pull back. We have to have a balanced budget every year in the state of New Mexico. Well, when that money’s not there, we have to pull it back from areas that we can.”

“No industry has been more unjustly villianized than oil and gas, on all fronts. Never has a more vital industry to the security of this nation faced a bigger onslaught of attacks,” said Doug Ackerman. “Vague and random ESG policies have shut down financing. From a numbers standpoint, 53-54% of the production within New Mexico is on federal land, the other 35% is on state land. So, when you look at the challenges from the federal and state level, any slowing of lease granting, any feet-dragging on the permitting side, slows down 53-54% of the entire production within the state of New Mexico.”

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