There is nothing inherently wrong with so-called green technologies, but they are expensive, unwieldy, and so far do not offer Americans a viable alternative to the internal combustion engine. Oil, natural gas, and coal are the fuels that run our modern world and power America’s economic growth engine. Without the ability to cheaply extract, refine, ship, and use these fuels, our chances for future economic growth are bleak. Those who want to restrict energy consumption damage our economic future and reduce the number of jobs which are needed to provide for families. At the same time, we must be good stewards of the gifts of the earth and work to end wasteful practices that unnecessarily pollute our environment.
We now know that the United States has massive energy reserves in petroleum fuels and natural gas, along with coal which can sustain American energy demand for centuries. We need to recognize that extracting, refining, and producing our own energy resources is central to economic growth. Such a policy also protects our national security and could even prevent us from involvement in wars waged because of dependence upon foreign oil.
Oil, natural gas, and coal producers in the United States face huge regulatory burdens, which prevent discovery, extraction, refining, sale, and use of these fuels, all of which contribute to our economic engine.
I support low cost energy for our businesses and our families. At the same time, policies must be responsible and not cause irreparable harm to our water, air quality and other natural resources.
I am currently leading the effort in the Virginia General Assembly to pass both an oil and natural gas compact, that would let Eastern Seaboard states explore and use their offshore oil and gas deposits, and a coal compact, which would allow the 26 coal-producing states to band together to protect and enhance coal production.
While states would need to approve the compacts under their respective state laws, Congress must also approve these arrangements. I will carry this fight to Washington and do all I can to make Congress support greater energy production and energy-related job creation.
Current nuclear technology offers huge increases in power generation capacity, but there remain political problems stemming from public concern over issues associated with storage of spent uranium, safety risks in handling spent fuel, and the possibility of using spent fuel for weapon grade uranium bombs, as well as terrorists securing the fuel by theft. More efforts must be undertaken to enhance the safety of nuclear power generation so that the public can have full confidence in its use to provide for energy needs in the future.
“A wise and frugal government, which shall restrain men from injuring one another, shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned.”
– Thomas Jefferson