Energy Secretary Rick Perry has a goal: to bring the same innovation and curiosity he relied on as governor of Texas to maintain a secure and reliable network of energy sources to benefit and protect our nation. He talks to American Gas about the challenges he faces, the future of U.S. energy dominance and how he sees natural gas as an important part of our growing energy portfolio.
American Gas: Texas is by far the nation’s biggest producer of energy, leading the nation in production of crude oil, natural gas and wind energy. Texas is also the sixth-largest consumer of energy, per capita, according to data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration. With this in mind, how will your experience as governor of such an energy state help you perform the role of secretary for the Department of Energy?
Rick Perry: As governor of Texas for 14 years, I saw the importance of energy and the effect it can have on an economy and on our people. During my tenure, our country was facing a problem of rapidly increasing gas prices with no immediate solution in sight. At the time, we were reliant upon foreign entities for our primary source of energy—petroleum. We began to change that in Texas by researching new types of energy sources. We developed a strong wind power portfolio, and Texas is now the sixth-biggest producer of wind energy in the world. We also set out to discover and develop the vast shale gas resources we had right beneath our feet, and alongside discoveries in Pennsylvania, we started an energy revolution. I plan on bringing this same innovation and curiosity to the department in order to maintain a secure and reliable network of energy sources to benefit and protect the American people.
American Gas: What do you see as the role of natural gas in the nation’s energy mix in four years, eight years, 20 years and even 50 years?
Rick Perry: The future is bright for natural gas. We’re at the front end of an energy revolution due to the breakthrough of shale natural gas that has driven down American energy costs over the last decade. In addition, growing production and development of liquefied natural gas is transforming the United States into a leading exporter of natural gas. Both American consumers and our allies across the globe will benefit from the United States’ innovation, especially on the natural gas front. I can’t tell you what the future will hold, but I can tell you that it will be bright.
American Gas: The World Gas Conference 2018 will showcase the many ways that the world is fueling
the future through natural gas. What do you hope to see from this event?
Rick Perry: The World Gas Conference, now in its 27th year, is a wonderful opportunity for the United States to share our technological advancements and strategies for natural gas on a global platform. The conference allows us to collaborate with foreign leaders and experts in the industry to ensure energy security and reliability throughout the world.
Source: American Gas Magazine – October 2017
Secretary Rick Perry tours and speaks with employees at the Department of Energy’s National Energy Technology Laboratory outside of Pittsburgh with U.S. Congressman Tim Murphy.
PHOTO COURTESY OF SIMON EDELMAN, DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY