U.S. House wants more oil shale options

Aug. 25, 2011 at 7:44 AM

WASHINGTON, Aug. 25 (UPI) -- Washington is throwing up roadblocks to the development of oil shale, which could meet domestic demands for the next 200 years, a lawmaker said.

U.S. Rep. Doug Lamborn, R-Colo., charged U.S. President Barack Obama has repeatedly gotten in the way of oil shale development in the country.

The World Energy Council in a 2007 report said the Green River oil shale deposit in the western United States contains an estimated 1.5 trillion barrels of oil shale deposits. Colorado reserves are estimated at 1 trillion barrels.

Lamborn said that instead of promoting technology needed to utilize the resources, Obama has "stonewalled" oil shale production.

Gary Aho, a representative from the National Oil Shale Association, told lawmakers his industry "needs a clear, consistent federal program and a national commitment to develop oil shale."

The WEC in its report said the "bottom line" in developing oil shale depends on the price of crude oil.

Oil shale is found in sedimentary rocks. Extraction involves open-pit mining, release of greenhouse gases and poses environmental concerns from waste material.

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