Democrats Must Preserve an ‘All-of-the-Above’ Energy Strategy

Real Clear Energy published an opinion editorial from Col. Tom Magness, a former commander in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, regarding the energy strategy of Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden. Magness remarks how Biden is proposing a $2 trillion public spending project that lacks detail and will leave taxpayers to pay the price. Biden’s proposed plan strays further left from President Obama’s moderate “All-of-the-Above” energy strategy – which proved to be largely successfully.

Magness explains the significant gains in the energy sector the U.S. has made over the past decade, writing:

“The growth of the U.S. natural gas industry under the Obama administration lowered household energy costs, created jobs, contributed to a major reduction in emissions, and played a significant role in accelerating the country’s recovery from the 2008 Financial Crisis. This was, and has remained under President Trump’s leadership, the right path for Americans.

Under President Trump American energy continued to make gains in energy sufficiency and production, as well as emissions reductions to the benefit of the American economy. This includes the largest absolute reduction in emissions by any country since 2000; adding tens of thousands of jobs thanks to large scale energy infrastructure projects like Keystone XL and Dakota Access; and an expectation to be a net energy exporter by the close of 2020.”

Considering the vast environmental and economic achievements made over the past decade, we cannot afford to reverse such important success.. Pipeline projects, which help transport oil and natural gas, are a key part of keeping up this success. With brutal economic hardships brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, Americans cannot afford higher energy costs, increased tax rates, and potential employment cuts over the next four years. Magness emphasizes the benefits of continued reliance on pipeline projects:

“A recent report from the Consumer Energy Alliance found that delays, obstruction, and cancellation of pipeline projects are threatening nearly $14 billion in economic activity, over 66,000 jobs, and more than $280 million a year in state and local tax revenue – crucial investment and employment that could go a long way in our nation’s long road to a COVID-19 recovery.”

In closing, Magness highlights how Joe Biden’s campaign should reconsider President Obama’s realistic approach of an “all-of-the-above” strategy. Magness concludes:

“A strong embrace of an all-of-the-above approach could reshape the debate on energy and curtail the unrealistic policies now championed by the left. Perhaps some draft language for the campaign reads: the continued development of safe and responsible natural gas production and accompanying infrastructure is not just compatible with, but a precondition of, a resilient economy and a cleaner future.  Surely on that we can all agree.”

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