May 13, 2022

North Dakota congressional delegation calls for more domestic energy production and a ban on Russian oil purchases

Russia is the third largest oil producer in the world and the largest exporter of oil to world markets. With growing sanctions on the country’s exports, oil prices have soared to over $110 this week. North Dakota’s congressional delegation said the United States must join in banning its purchases while promoting its own energy production.

Federal policies and reliance on OPEC production have been among the major factors in North Dakota’s energy production. With oil and gas prices soaring due to an international dispute, North Dakota lawmakers have said it’s time for the country to regain its energy independence.

While pushing for increased production of goods and services in America during his State of the Union address, President Biden did not include oil and gas, which is one of the largest concerns of North Dakota’s largest industry.

“Give the green light. Send the right market signals. Produce in the United States of America where we not only produce better, and with much higher labor and environmental standards,” said Senator Kevin Cramer, R-ND.

On Tuesday, Republican senators introduced legislation banning the purchase of Russian oil. North Dakota Sen. John Hoeven, R-ND, added that the White House needs to change how it leverages national resources.

“The Home Office must immediately end the lease moratorium and organize previously postponed lease sales, both onshore and offshore. We need to expand our energy infrastructure to ensure efficient delivery to consumers. This includes approval of the Keystone XL pipeline,” Hoeven said.

That sentiment is also being pushed by House Republicans.

“Let it go back and let us do what we did so well until last year. Developing American energy, allowing it to be used away from our adversaries,” said Rep. Kelly Armstrong, R-ND.

The United States imported nearly 700,000 barrels of oil a day from Russia last year. The delegation said that by promoting domestic production, the United States would see enhanced national security, lower energy costs and relief from inflation.

Last night President Biden said the country would release 30 million barrels of oil to limit rising prices. Cramer called it “a thimble in the ocean” and argues that more could be done by sending the right market and regulatory signals to developers and producers.

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