By Nicholas Johnston
President Barack Obama said he is directing his administration to take steps to encourage domestic oil production because of the high price of gasoline’s effect on consumers.
“Without a doubt, one of the biggest burdens over the last few months has been the price of gasoline,” Obama said in his weekly address on the radio and Internet. “And while there are no quick fixes to the problem, there are a few steps we should take that make good sense.”
Obama said the government will begin conducting annual lease sales for oil drilling in Alaska, make faster evaluations of oil and gas resources in the Atlantic Ocean, and create new incentives to encourage oil companies to develop unused leases.
The Obama administration is also delaying the implementation of new safety procedures to give oil companies more time to comply with stricter standards implemented after last year’s oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
“We should increase safe and responsible oil production here at home,” Obama said. (more)