In response to Jen Psaki’s comments on reducing U.S. dependence on foreign oil through renewable energy, Scott Angelle, the former director of the U.S. Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE), issued the following statement:

“There’s no debate on the need to reduce dependence on foreign oil, there’s no debate that we should include renewable energy as a viable component of our U.S. energy policy. But to ignore the immediate relief that increased U.S. oil production can provide to the ever-increasing pain at the pump is not a wise strategic approach.

“We need to enlist the determination of the USA energy workers. The men and women of our country who wear steel-toed boots and hard hats have helped each generation of Americans overcome many challenges. Let’s unleash the American spirit to replace these imported barrels, lower energy costs, create American jobs, fund infrastructure with the increased government revenue, and improve the health of our planet. Facts clearly show U.S. offshore oil and gas is a viable source of energy at lower emissions. Recent research regarding carbon emissions reveals that U.S. Gulf of Mexico production has approximately half the carbon intensity per barrel of other producing regions worldwide. When it comes to flared or vented methane, the U.S. offshore industry has consistently been one of the best performing provinces in the world with a ratio of less than 1.25% of flared or vented to produced gas.

Keep in mind the most negatively impacted among us from rising energy costs are those in poverty and senior citizens living on fixed incomes. While we search to expand alternative energy sources to help energize our future, we also need to consider our citizens’ quality of life and our national security commitment. A balanced approach forward is one which works to lower rising energy prices through domestic production now while investing on renewable energy as a viable energy source for the future. U.S. offshore leasing needs to continue without delay to have a balanced energy transition for the United States providing for the environment, energy, and the economy.”

Angelle also held positions in Louisiana as lieutenant governor, secretary of LA Department of Natural Resources and chairman, Louisiana Public Service Commission.