October 5 – MIDLAND – American Petroleum Institute President and CEO Mike Sommers of Washington, DC said here on Tuesday that the energy industry “faces a critical political moment. With Congress and the Biden administration.
After spending two days meeting with tankers in Odessa and Midland, Sommers said his organization fervently works to educate the new administration on energy issues that are critical to reliability, affordability for consumers and reliability. national security.
He reported recently meeting with US Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm and White House National Climate Advisor Regina McCarthy; however, he said, “I’m not always sure they can hear us.”
Sommers said the industry was encouraged by New Orleans District Judge Terry A. Doughty’s August ruling that President Biden overstepped his authority with his ban on drilling on federal lands. in January.
He said Biden was obeying Judge Doughty’s order to proceed with the lease of federal and offshore land, but predicted the administration would appeal to the New Orleans 5th Circuit Court of Appeals and to the Supreme Court of the United States if it loses.
When asked if he came to the Permian Basin in part to compete for members of the Washington-based Independent Petroleum Association of America, Sommers said the API’s relationship with IPAA was collegial and non-competitive.
He reported meeting “here in America’s oil and gas industry capital” with executives from Occidental Petroleum, Pioneer Natural Resources, Diamondback Energy, CrownQuest Operating, Chevron, ConocoPhillips and other API members.
“We spend a lot of time dealing with new environmental regulations introduced by the President and Congress,” Sommers said. “There are some things in the budget reconciliation bill that are very worrying, like punitive tax increases that we think would not be prudent for the industry or the country.
“We have been able to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by switching from using coal to natural gas, so we believe natural gas should meet clean industry standards.”
He stated that with the exception of the late President George HW Bush, who served from 1989 to 1993, and his son, President George W. Bush, who served from 2001 to 2009, both having With a solid background in the oil and gas industry, the industry had to undertake an extensive educational process with most of the new presidents to bypass damaging government initiatives.
But Sommers said in an interview with the Permian Strategic Partnership’s downtown office that that process has been more difficult than ever this year. “At some point we have to start taking them at their word,” he said. “The shutdown of the Keystone pipeline and the ban on lease licenses on federal lands were significant concerns. At the same time, they had the door open to work with us.
“We need to be literate about climate change and they need to be literate about energy as well, because oil and gas will play a very important role in this country for decades and decades to come.”