RICHMOND, VA — February 21, 2018 — Consumer Energy Alliance (CEA), a national advocate for energy consumers, and various Virginia organizations joined together today to show support for the U.S. Department of the Interior’s (DOI) proposed 2019-2024 National OCS Oil and Gas Leasing Draft Proposed Program. During a press conference held near the DOI’s public meeting on the Draft Proposed Program, speakers highlighted the positive impact that offshore energy development in the Atlantic will have on Virginia’s families and businesses.
The following individuals provided quotes for today’s press conference:
“Lifted up by human innovation and technological advances, the energy revolution has allowed the United States to achieve continued environmental progress, demonstrating that American energy development and a healthy environment go hand-in-hand,” said Tim Page, Executive Director of CEA-Southeast. “However, without access to more areas like the Atlantic, these benefits are at risk for Virginia, where individuals already spend an estimated $3,288 annually on energy and where households rank #10 in the country for average monthly electricity consumption.”
Page added: “With estimated benefits for Virginia alone as high as nearly 25,000 additional jobs, $2.2 billion in added annual economic growth, and over $1.8 billion in state revenue, access to Atlantic energy could help provide a major boost to Virginia families and small businesses. This will help to keep energy costs affordable so Virginians have more money in their pocket to spend on critical needs — whether it is for groceries, rent, saving for college, or filling a prescription — giving the Commonwealth revenue that can help provide public services and support major infrastructure projects.”
Highlighting the need for energy independence in the U.S., President and CEO of Virginia Manufacturers Association, Brett Vassey stated, “CEA is looking 20 years into the future to assure that the U.S. keeps moving toward energy independence and consumers enjoy decades of stable, reliable and affordable energy.”
Thomas Jefferson Institute Chairman and President, Mike Thompson commented on the importance of access to energy resources by stating, “This plan places Virginia in a unique position to be one of the greatest beneficiaries with increased job creation, economic growth and strengthened national security. By developing what could be our abundant offshore resources, we can fill a critical need in meeting our long-term energy needs and stabilizing energy costs for consumers. Such development could add significantly to our employment and to our local and state tax base.”
Thompson added: “The bottom line is that increasing access to our offshore resources will help diversify Virginia’s economy, to lower energy costs for families, manufacturers, and businesses, and put more Virginians into high paying jobs.”
Americans for Prosperity-Virginia State Director, JC Hernandez emphasized the impact offshore energy exploration will have on Virginia by stating, “For too long, Virginia has faced burdensome barriers that have stifled our domestic energy production and limited opportunities and economic growth for our state. This plan is a potential path to a more diverse Virginia economy, good paying jobs, and lower power bills.”
Hernandez continued: “Allowing exploration is a crucial step in a more robust, diversified Virginia economy and we should seize the opportunity.”
About Consumer Energy Alliance
Consumer Energy Alliance (CEA) brings together families, farmers, small businesses, distributors, producers and manufacturers to support America’s energy future. With more than 450,000 members nationwide, our mission is to help ensure stable prices and energy security for households across the country. We believe energy development is something that touches everyone in our nation, and thus it is necessary for all of us to actively engage in the conversation about how we develop our diverse energy resources and energy’s importance to the economy. Learn more at ConsumerEnergyAlliance.org.