To ensure our energy security and create economic growth, it is vital that we safely developed our energy resources in American waters.  And there is an abundance of oil and natural gas in America's Outer Continental Shelf (OCS).  

Although the share of non-fossil fuels is growing rapidly, oil and natural gas will continue to play leading roles in supplying the U.S. with energy through 2040.  The U.S. Energy Information Agency (EIA) projects that U.S. energy demand to increase 12% between 2012 and 2040, and estimates that more than 60% of the energy demand will be met by oil and natural gas.

The U.S. Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) is estimated to contain vast undiscovered oil and natural gas resources. Unfortunately, the federal government has placed most of the OCS off-limits to energy exploration and development.  That is 87% of the federal offshore acreage marked as off limits to development.


Developing these oil and natural gas resources will be vital to achieving energy security, growing our economy, and reducing government deficits. 

Opening these areas could, by 2035, create 840,000 American jobs, generate $200 billion in revenue for the government, and increase U.S. energy production by 3.4 million barrels of oil (equivalent) per day.  

Oil and natural gas production off our Atlantic coast could be great opportunities for the various regions. Developing oil and natural gas in the Atlantic could put hundreds of thousands of Americans to work, make us more energy secure, and bring in needed revenue for the government. 

The Atlantic OCS contains at least 4.7 billion barrels of oil and 37 trillion cube feet of natural gas.  By 2035 this could provide 280,000 new jobs, $51 billion in government revenues and generate 1.3 million barrels of oil equivalent to domestic energy production. 

Despite overwhelming public support from Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia, Secreatary of Inerior Sally Jewel announced in March 2016 that the proposed 2017-2022 Oil and Gas Leasing Program would not include any lease sales for the Pacific or Atlantic OCS.

Ninety-eight percent of the Eastern Gulf of Mexico planning area is under a congressional leasing moratorium until 2022, putting nearly all of the area’s 64.5 million acres off limits to oil and natural gas development.

If opened to development, the Eastern Gulf of Mexico could deliver by 2035:

No offshore oil and natural gas leases have been sold in the Pacific Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) since 1984, with the last of those limited to off southern and central California. None have been sold off the northern California, Oregon or Washington coasts since the 1960s. This means more than 240 million acres are currently off limits to oil and natural gas development.

Access to the Pacific OCS could generate, by 2035:

Since statehood, Alaska has been among America’s energy producing elites, an example of what can be achieved with foresight, determination and innovation.  It is one of the best examples of how energy policy can change not just the trajectory of energy production, but how it can greatly improve and enhance the lives and livelihoods of its citizens. 

The development of oil and gas resources in Alaska’s OCS could produce almost 10 billion barrels of oil and 15 trillion cubic feet of natural gas – supporting almost 55,000 new jobs and $145 billion in new payroll nationally, as well as a total of $193 billion in government revenue through the year 2057.

In addition increased OCS production in Alaska would also extend the operating life of the 800-mile Trans-Alaska Pipeline System (TAPS), a critical lifeline of domestic energy for America.