A picture of Senator Lisa Murkowski
Lisa M.
Republican AK

About Sen. Lisa
  • Executive Session

    by Senator Lisa Murkowski

    Posted on 2013-02-14

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    MURKOWSKI. I thank my colleague from North Dakota. I thank him for his leadership on how we can get the Keystone Pipeline moving, how we can ensure that a resource from our friend and ally Canada can be utilized, can help us here in this country to truly gain that level of energy security we have been talking about.

    There have been several good comments about the report I released last week, my ``Energy 20/20.'' I just happen to have a copy of it here on the floor. But out of 115 pages, I can distill it in one simple bumper sticker; that is, energy is good, energy is necessary.

    If you look at the cover of the report here, it is essentially a map of the world from way up high. When you are looking down and you see the lights at night, you can tell the prosperous places within the world. It is where the lights are on. It is where our energy is. So when we talk about energy, I think it is important to really put it in the context of how important, how significant it is to our daily lives.

    Over a week ago now we were all reminded of the importance of energy when there were 34 minutes of dead [[Page S734]] time during the Super Bowl. A lot of folks were paying attention to, well, where do we get our energy sources from? It starts a good conversation, a necessary conversation.

    In my document I focus on five different areas where we need to talk about energy policy. I am looking for an energy policy that is abundant, affordable, clean, diverse, and secure. When we talk about the fifth one, the security, this is where the Keystone XL project really comes in to play. When we are talking about security, that does not necessarily mean that everything we want as a nation is going to be produced right here within our own borders. What it means is how we reduce vulnerabilities from others, how we can eliminate our reliance on OPEC.

    Ladies and gentlemen, this is a reality. This is doable. This is possible by 2020. This is not pie in the sky. Let me give you some numbers.

    In 2011 Canada produced roughly 2.9 million barrels of crude oil per day. Mexico produced 2.6 million. When you add this to the approximately 6 million barrels the United States produces each day, total North American production--which is 11.5 million barrels--it is far greater than the Nation's net imports, which was 8.5 million barrels back last year--more than double the imports from OPEC.

    So if we can do more within our own borders here and ensure that we are able to rely on our friends to the north, the Canadians, and our friends to the south, the Mexicans, we can displace--we can fully displace our reliance on OPEC imports by the year 2020.

    But part of achieving this goal is being able to count on the Keystone XL Pipeline. It is as simple as that. It is about security. It is about ensuring that we have a supply that not only helps us achieve that energy security, but it allows us to achieve economic security.

    So far as the jobs that are created, really the ripple effect that goes out--it is not just constructing one pipeline. It is the ripple effect that comes from this boom of opportunity within our country.

    So it is jobs and economic security. It is energy security from the perspective of reducing our reliance on those countries we do not necessarily like, removing ourselves from the need to import OPEC oil, and having the ability to control our destiny from a perspective of abundance rather than from scarcity.

    We should look to our friends and neighbors. We should work with the Canadians. The President should sign the Keystone XL Pipeline bill into law. He should make it happen. We should not be waiting any longer for all the reasons so many on this floor have discussed this afternoon.

    So to my friend the Senator from North Dakota, I say thank you for your leadership. Let's make this happen now.

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