Perry Announces Ambitious Energy Plan

Published October 18, 2011

Texas governor and Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry is drawing strong praise for his ambitious¬†energy and environment plan, announced last Friday. Perry calls for opening more federal lands to energy development, eliminating bureaucratic roadblocks to energy production in lands that are open for development, supporting natural gas production from shale formations, eliminating federal subsidies and mandates giving preferential treatment to expensive renewable fuels, abolishing EPA in its current form and returning most of EPA’s budget and environmental authority to state governments, and limiting EPA’s ability to cut sweetheart deals with environmental activist groups who sue EPA seeking more stringent environmental restrictions.

According to an Oct. 15 National Review house editorial, “Gov. Rick Perry has released a jobs plan. Or is it an energy plan? Or it is an EPA-reform plan? Or is it a trade-deficit plan? The plan is a bit of each, and it is a very good one.”

“Governor Perry is of course well positioned to appreciate the growth potential of the energy industry: He has seen it at work,” National Review explains. “Mitt Romney, attempting to downplay Governor Perry’s job-creation record, scoffed that Texas is an unusual case: ‘Texas has a lot of oil and gas in the ground,’ he said, and compared Governor Perry’s claiming some credit for the Texas economic boom to Al Gore’s claim to have created the Internet. But Texas isn’t the only state with a lot of oil in the ground. It may be true that the whole country can’t have a Texas-style energy economy, but Louisiana can, and so can Florida, Pennsylvania, New York, Virginia, the Carolinas, Colorado and a few other western states, Alaska, and more. And the states that do not have much energy potential have potential of other kinds lying untapped. The question is not how much oil is in the ground, but whether Americans will be allowed to develop our resources. And it is in that regard that Governor Perry’s plan speaks to what is actually holding back the American economy and what Washington can realistically do about it.”

Myron Ebell, senior fellow at the Competitive Enterprise Institute, explains the job-creation potential of Perry’s plan.

“Perry claims that his plan will provide a major boost to economic growth and create 1.2 million new jobs. ¬†Looking over the plan, my guess is that 1.2 million jobs is a lowball figure if his proposals were fully implemented.”

Or, as American Enterprise Institute scholar Kenneth Green summarized Perry’s plan more succinctly, “Couldn’t have said that better myself.”

Perry’s energy plan can be read in its entirety at