The Obama administration announced today it is putting up nearly 38 million acres in the central Gulf of Mexico for oil and gas lease sales. “Expanding offshore oil and gas production is a key component of our comprehensive energy strategy to grow America’s energy economy, and will help us continue to reduce our dependence on foreign oil and create jobs here at home,” said Interior Secretary Ken Salazar.
President Obama will discuss his energy strategy today during speeches in Nevada and Colorado.
In an announcement, the administration says Obama wants an “all-of-the-above” energy approach that includes traditional sources like oil and gas as well as new sources of “clean energy.”
“Today, American oil production is at the highest level in eight years and last year we relied less on foreign oil than in any of the past 16 years,” the administration said.
It added that “transitioning to cleaner sources of energy will enhance our national security, protect the environment and public health, and grow our economy and create new jobs.”
Republicans say the Obama administration is also pursuing regulations that is choking off potential oil and gas production.
The GOP has also questioned the administration’s ability to help new energy projects, citing the bankruptcy of the Solyndra solar power company.