Today President Obama, formalizing one of several steps he announced this spring to continue to increase safe and responsible domestic oil and gas production, announced the formation of a new, high-level interagency working group to coordinate on energy development in Alaska. Officially created through an Executive Order, President Obama established the Interagency Working Group on Coordination of Domestic Energy Development and Permitting in Alaska. As Deputy Secretary of the Interior, I am honored to lead this cross-agency team.
The formation of this group is only the most recent step the President has taken to support the increased development our nation’s important resources, while ensuring that we do so safely and responsibly, including being guided by the important lessons learned by the largest oil spill in our nation’s history. The foundation for this effort is laid out in the President’s Blueprint for a Secure Energy Future , which charts a path to build a 21st century clean energy economy over the long term and dramatically cut our oil imports by 2025, through the responsible development of oil and gas at home, while at the same time facilitating the development of cleaner, alternative fuels and increasing efficiency .