At the Democratic National Convention, Colorado’s own Ken Salazar, now Secretary of the Interior, spoke about energy production. He claimed that oil and gas imports are down because of the Obama Administration’s efforts to increase domestic production, and that wind and solar production have increased dramatically.
“And today, for the first time in more than a decade, we import less than half our oil,” said Salazar. “U.S. natural gas production is at an all-time high. And oil production at a 14-year high. Renewable production from solar and wind has more than doubled under the President’s leadership. And on public lands alone, the largest solar, wind and geothermal plants in the world are sprouting up across our public lands, enough electricity to power more than three million Americans homes.”
Unfortunately for him, Colorado’s own Michael Sandoval, an investigative reporter with The Heritage Foundation, uses the Energy Information Administration’s own numbers to puts Salazar claims in a brighter light.
“According to the EIA, beginning in 2005 several factors played a role in decreasing oil imports — most prominently, the contraction in the economy,” writes Sandoval, who also juxtaposes the EIA’s report of increased domestic drilling with Salazar’s mocking of “Drill, Baby, Drill.”
Sandoval notes that oil and gas production on federal lands is falling and that the Obama Administration has opposed the Keystone XL pipeline. Meanwhile, wind and solar account for only one-seventh of renewable energy, and less than 2% of all energy production.
“Salazar, conversely, promoted the opening of federal lands to solar and wind development,” writes Sandoval. “But most of that development has occurred because of extensive Department of Energy loans and grants to companies that have gone bankrupt or are in dire financial straits – high-profile ‘setbacks,’ according to Salazar.”
Among the “cars that Americans want to buy” (as Salazar put it) don’t count on the Volt, which will almost certainly never recoup the $1.2 billion in sunk costs for its development. Many of the sales are heavily subsidized by the federal government (still a large GM shareholder), and production has been halted twice this year in favor of more popular, profitable models.