Ukraine conflict has some calling for more oil and gas drilling

By Ron Dungan
Published: Wednesday, March 30, 2022 - 6:23pm

The war in Ukraine has some lawmakers and industry advocates calling for more oil and gas development.

But the reason for these proposals has nothing to do with energy supplies.

The war has raised questions about the flow of oil and gas, leading some lawmakers to call for more drilling.

But new leases can take years to develop.

Kyle Tisdel of the Western Environmental Law Center says the United States is already the leading oil producer in the world and that calls for more leases are a signal to the stock market.

That signal is not likely to lead to an increase in energy production.

“You know, industry is already sitting on about 9,000 approved oil and gas permits that it’s not drilling on,” Tisdel said.

He says that drilling for oil and gas had already increased under the Biden administration.

“The oil and gas industry is sitting on over 12 million acres of federal leases that are not in production, and has a surplus of about 9,000 drilling permits that are not being drilled right now, that they could drill tomorrow if they wanted to," Tisdel said.