President Obama was in Las Vegas, Nevada today to outline how we’re using more of an abundant source of energy, natural gas. Last April, the President issued a challenge to shipping companies to upgrade their fleets to run on less oil or no oil at all. Today, he delivered remarks at UPS’s facility in Las Vegas—one of the first companies to step up to the challenge, becoming a leader in using natural gas as an alternative.
Over the last three years, we negotiated the toughest new efficiency standards for cars and trucks in history. We’ve opened up millions of new acres for oil and gas exploration. Right now, American oil production is the highest that it’s been in eight years. Eight years. Last year, we relied less on foreign oil than in any of the last 16 years. That hasn’t gotten a lot of attention, but that’s important. We’re moving in the right direction when it comes to oil and gas production.
Some of you may not be following this, but because of new technologies, because we can now access natural gas that we couldn’t access before in an economic way, we’ve got a supply of natural gas under our feet that can last America nearly 100 years.
So we’re going to keep working with the private sector to develop up to five natural gas corridors along our highways. There are highways that have natural gas fueling stations between cities, just like the one that folks at UPS, South Coast Air, and Clean Energy Fuels are opening today between Los Angeles and Salt Lake City. That’s a great start. So now one of these trucks can go from Long Beach all the way to Salt Lake City. And they’re going to be able to refuel along the way.