High oil prices on the global market highlight the need to open more U.S. territory to energy production, a U.S. senator said.
Oil prices have declined somewhat but remain a concern. U.S. consumers are affected because of the link between crude oil and gasoline prices.
U.S. Sen. Dick Lugar, R-Ind., writes in the South Bend (Ind.) Tribune that action is needed to address concerns over what he said was a strategic vulnerability in oil markets.
"Global oil markets are extraordinarily tight and vulnerable to supply disruptions that can send prices skyrocketing for reasons beyond our control in the United States," he writes. "That makes it all the more important to do what is in our control to improve production of all reliable fuels and enable innovation."
U.S. President Barack Obama's administration says domestic oil and natural gas production are at record highs though his critics counter that's because of policies enacted by the previous administration.
White House spokesman Jay Carney said last week as Obama toured western U.S. states that regardless of the credit, domestic production has increased.
"I understand that, as we've seen for weeks now, there is a sustained effort to try to achieve some political gain out of the challenge presented to average folks out there by the price of gas at the pump," he said.