One of the nation's premier oilmen testified in favor of ending a ban on oil exports Thursday before a Senate committee.
Continental Resources Inc. CEO Harold Hamm said the ban is one of only two remaining laws passed in the 1970s to artificially control the supply, demand and price of U.S. energy.
Now the nation is on the verge of energy independence, thanks to advances in oil and natural gas development, but Hamm said the industry's renaissance is in jeopardy.
“These outdated crude export restrictions have prevented domestic oil exploration and production from achieving its full potential — slowing potential job growth, restricting supply, and negatively affecting global refined product balances, which sends the wrong message to our trading partners around the world,” he said.
Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, has called for the Obama administration to end the prohibition on oil exports.
“The International Energy Agency has warned that maintaining the ban may actually result in shut-in production, which would be to the detriment of the nation's livelihood,” Murkowski said. “Lifting the ban is about increasing domestic production and creating jobs.”
Sen. Ron Wyden, the Oregon Democrat who is chairman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, said any discussion of potential oil exports should consider the impact on American businesses and consumers.
Hamm, chairman of the Domestic Energy Producers Alliance, dismissed claims that oil exports would lead to higher gasoline prices.
Watch Hamm's testimony before the Senate Energy and...