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Democratic Policy & communications center | Senator Debbie Stabenow, Chairwoman
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Republicans Ignore Fact That Oil Companies Are Refusing To Produce Oil On Millions Of Acres Of Already Leased Land

Mar 12, 2012

Claim: Republicans claim that the federal government isn't opening up enough federal land to oil and gas drilling.

Fact: Oil companies are sitting on millions of acres of leases, and refusing to produce oil on more than two-thirds of them.  As of FY2012, the oil and gas industry was using less than one-third of the nearly 75 million acres of land offered by this Administration for development.  

Claim: Republicans claim that oil companies can't start drilling on leased lands because the government won't issue enough permits.

Fact:  Oil companies are using less than half of their approved drilling permits.  Since FY 2009, the Obama Administration has approved 12,821 permits for oil & gas drilling. Yet, over 7,000 of these permits remain idle.  

Ignoring the fact that 8 years of increased domestic oil production has decreased our dependency on foreign oil, Republicans still cling to the old argument that oil companies need more access to federal land.  Democrats have a better idea - oil companies should start producing on the permits they already have.