Independent Petroleum Association of America (IPAA) Chairman Virginia “Gigi” Lazenby released the statement below in response to Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s energy platform which was unveiled today. Lazenby is chairman of Nashville-based Bretagne, LLC, one of the 7,000 independent oil and natural gas companies that drill 95 percent of the nation’s wells.
“The Romney plan demonstrates a very clear understanding of how America’s oil and natural gas companies, like mine, work. It unleashes the potential of America’s independent producers, which will result in millions of jobs, revenues to federal, state, and local governments and a more secure United States.
“It incorporates the appropriate role of government in energy policy, which must be to promote energy development, rather than stifle it by overwhelming or threatening regulations and destructive legislation.
“For instance, the states, not bureaucrats from Washington, best know how to protect the environment while allowing for responsible American energy production. The Romney plan also recognizes the important principle of multiple-use federal land management, in which oil and natural gas development should play a prominent role.
“The Romney campaign has it right: producing more American-made energy is truly a ‘plan for a stronger middle class.’ The outstanding economic advantages that follow from development include a $500 billion boost to the American economy and the creation of three million new jobs plus an additional one million new manufacturing jobs. The energy security gains from increased American energy development would be tremendous, as U.S. foreign policy decisions and energy markets would be insulated from instability and hostility overseas.”