Obama's Agenda: Clean Energy, Jobs, and Reduce Dependence on Foreign Oil

Brian Hicks

Written By Brian Hicks

Posted January 26, 2012

In his recent State of the Union Address, President Obama outlined a comprehensive plan to increase jobs, increase natural gas and clean energy production, and reduce our dependence on foreign oil.

In order to optimize domestic oil and gas resources the Domestic of Interior is to lease out 38 million acres in the Gulf of Mexico, potentially yielding 1 billion barrels of oil and 4 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.

The Department of Interior is also expected to finalize a deal that makes 75 percent of offshore resources available in the Gulf of Alaska.

The president also put forth a plan that aims to harness America’s nearly 100-year supply of natural gas, which could create more than 600,000 jobs, a move coupled with rules that would require the disclosure  of chemicals used in fracking operations on public lands.

To reduce the nations dependence on foreign oil, a competitive grant program is being implemented to encourage communities to develop medium-and heavy-duty trucks that run on natural gas or other alternative fuels. 

The grant is also designed to coax communities into developing transportation corridors that will allow trucks fueled by liquefied natural gas to transport goods and implement programs that will convert public transportation vehicles to run on natural gas.

A new research competition is also underway to discover ways of storing and harnessing our abundant supplies of natural gas.

The President also reaffirmed his commitment to clean energy.

Obama aims to double the share of electricity from clean energy sources by 2035, hoping to create a domestic market for clean energy technologies.

Public open lands will be made available in an attempt to boost energy security as well as create new jobs. The Department of Interior will issue permits for 10 gigawatts of renewable generation of capacity, sufficient to power 3 million homes.

Tax incentives will be created and aimed at continuing successful provisions vital to the continued domestic growth of clean energy manufacturing and are estimated to create up to 100,000 jobs.

Republicans are critical of both the President’s commitment to reducing dependence and creating jobs citing his refusal to grant a permit to TransCanada (NYSE: TRP), which would allow the construction of the Keystone XL pipeline.

Key Republicans accused Obama of stifling energy production and not being fully committed to creating jobs in America.

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