After the House passed the first of three bills to speed up and expand offshore drilling on Thursday, Massachusetts Democrat Edward Markey says that the only way to combat high energy prices is to crack down on speculators, deploy the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, and put a clean-energy policy in place.
“Americans are shackled to an uncompetitive and corrupt global oil market—one that is draining wealth from the U.S. economy at a rate of $1 billion a day,” Markey writes in a USA Today op-ed.
Markey writes that consumers are stuck between a speculative market and manipulators such as Saudi Arabia and the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, who he says are responsible for price volatility.
“The oil market should be governed by the principles of supply and demand, not flittering on the whims of speculators,” he says.
In addition to cracking down on speculators, Markey says that releasing a small fraction of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve can send a “powerful signal to OPEC and speculators that the U.S. will not be held hostage to price manipulation.”
Ultimately, though, Markey argues that an energy policy centered around clean energy— not oil—is the way forward to lower prices and more jobs.
The House is set to take up two more bills this week to speed up and expand offshore drilling, with many members arguing that increased domestic energy production will settle the volatile market.
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