Matt Dempsey Matt_Dempsey@epw.senate.gov (202) 224-9797
Katie Brown Katie_Brown@epw.senate.gov (202) 224-2160
Obama Administration Report Reveals that the United States Has 26% of World's Technically Recoverable Conventional Oil Resources
Washington, D.C. - Senator James M. Inhofe (R-Okla.), Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, and Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), Ranking Member of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, today commented on a newly released government assessment from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), which illustrates the truth about America's vast energy reserves. Despite the President's intentionally misleading claim that the United States only has two percent of the world's oil reserves, this assessment confirms that America's technically recoverable conventional oil resources are 26 percent of the world's supply, and this doesn't begin to include our enormous oil shale, tight oil and heavy oil resources. Moreover, it shows that the United States holds almost 30 percent of the world's technically recoverable conventional natural gas resources, without including our massive supply of shale gas.
Senator Inhofe: "Well, there goes President Obama's favorite talking point. The President's own administration released a report which reveals that the United States has 26 percent of the world's technically recoverable conventional oil resources, and that's not including our enormous oil shale, tight oil, and heavy oil resources. This report from the U.S. Geological Survey is vindication for anyone who thought that President Obama's claims - that we 'only have 2 percent of the world's proven oil reserves,' and that 'Even if we drilled every square inch of this country right now, we'd still have to rely disproportionately on other countries for their oil' - are less than honest. This report comes on the heels of the non-partisan Congressional Research Service finding that America has the largest endowment of oil, gas, and coal resources of any country in the world. President Obama may wish that we only had 2 percent of the world's oil so that he could force us into his policies of energy austerity, but the truth is clear: we could end our reliance on the Middle East if we could just stop President Obama's war on fossil fuels and develop our wealth of resources."
Senator Murkowski: "According to the new USGS global estimates, it appears that we have much more of the world's oil supply than the 2 percent claim the president has repeatedly used. Furthermore, it seems that some of the countries that we've been relying on to provide spare capacity to the global market have less oil than previously thought. It's clear that now is the time for us to move forward with exploration and development of more of our own resources. The longer our nation waits to develop our resources, the longer we wait to improve our energy security, create new jobs, pay down our debt, and invest in next-generation energy technologies."