President Barack Obama’s ambiguous policy on natural gas is creating serious problems for the energy market, says Jack Gerard, president of the American Petroleum Institute.
“Unfortunately, the president has about 10 agencies that are looking to regulate natural gas production, and that is sending the industry a mixed message,” he writes on Politico
“The uncertainty over what the rules of the game will be over the next four years is having a chilling effect on the market. The president can send a positive signal by demonstrating early on that his expressed interest in increased natural gas production was more than election-year rhetoric.”
Whether Obama’s deeds match his words will determine what impact he has on gasoline and electricity prices, Gerard says.
“The price of gasoline is a pure function of supply and demand. The more [crude oil] we refine, produce, and market, the lower the price goes.” The issue is producing at home rather than importing from abroad, Gerard says.
Gasoline prices now average $3.44 nationally, up from about $1.80 when Obama took office in January 2009.
As for electricity, the tremendous increase in domestic natural gas production has pushed down prices, he says.
“For the first time, the U.S. is the largest producer of natural gas in the world, saving consumers an average of $500 million each day. This is a big deal for both consumers and the environment, and it will be up to the president to harness this opportunity.”
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