A day before the election, an informative outline on where President Obama and Mitt Romney stand on energy policy:
Based on both actions and words, it’s clear that a second Obama administration would see a continued trend toward the federalization and centralization of energy policy; continued adoption of more expensive “green energy” and “clean energy standards” that raise the costs of power; and a sort of “go it alone” policy that eschews sand oil from Canada in favor of moving cars off oil and onto electricity generated from domestic wind and solar power. One would expect the slowdowns of leasing and production on federally controlled lands to continue, and if new EPA regulations on hydraulic fracturing are put in place, production on state and private lands might slow as well.
What might happen under a Romney administration is, of course, much more speculative (as his track record is not as clear), but the framework he’s laid out in his energy plan is nearly the opposite of Obama’s: An aggressive expansion of exploration and drilling across the US, in Alaska, and in coastal waters; decentralization of regulation rather than centralization; an emphasis on affordability; and a goal of integrating North America’s energy markets. Romney’s views on renewables are less clear, but he seems to be less in favor of continued subsidies to things like wind power and ethanol, and he’s deeply critical of having the government attempt to pick winning and losing technologies in the energy marketplace.