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Senator Murkowski Questions Accuracy of White House Oil Production Claims

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski today questioned Interior Department officials about the decline in oil production from federal lands and waters – despite the President’s claims that production is up.

President Obama has said that “under my administration, America is producing more oil today than at any time in the last eight years,” but the Department of the Interior’s own data indicates that oil production is actually down 14 on federal lands and down 17 percent from federal waters.

Sen. Murkowski questioned Bureau of Land Management Director Bob Abbey – who oversees production on federal lands – to explain which information is accurate. Sen. Murkowski pointed out that overall oil production is up nationally because of activity on state and private lands, not federal. Sen. Murkowski raised the issue at Wednesday’s Senate Appropriations Interior Subcommittee hearing.

Sen. Murkowski: “Yesterday, Interior Secretary Salazar said, ‘The fact of the matter is we are producing more from public lands – both oil and gas, both onshore as well as offshore, than any time in recent memory.’ I understand why the administration is working hard to try to explain what it claims is its record, but we have a problem here. The administration’s own data is either wrong or this information has not been adequately communicated to the secretary.” 

Dir. Abbey: “The statistics will speak for themselves.”

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