Oil prices decline

The price of oil is headed for the biggest decline since December 2008.

U.S. crude has dropped almost 16 percent based on predictions that world demand will not be as high as previously thought.

Despite the slump, North American oil and gas production is expanding.

Energy Policy Research Foundation President Lou Pugliaresi cites technology, better policy and access to federal land as being key components to the domestic expansion.

Pugliaresi can be seen on KTOO’s 360 North television Friday (June 1), at 8 p.m.

He recently spoke to the Juneau World Affairs Council on the “Coming Renaissance in North American Oil.”

“We should have policies that hold up fairly well under uncertainty, and that is a basic flaw in American energy policy,” Pugliaresi said. “We think we know what the future looks like and we don’t. So we end taking policies that try to reinforce the worst expectations about the future.”

Pugliaresi said government needs to change its thinking about permitting and the trade-offs between economic value and environmental costs.

“If we get appropriate policies in place we are going to become a dominate energy producer in the western hemisphere. I think it’s only a matter of 10 to 15 years where the whole western hemisphere no longer buys any oil from the Middle East,” Pugliaresi said.

Pugliaresi worked for the federal government in the 1970s and ’80s with jobs in the National Security Council, Department of State, Department of Energy and the Department of the Interior.

“The Coming Renaissance in North American Oil” airs at 8 p.m. on 360 North.