Update: oil-and-gas trade groups respond to Salazar

Two petroleum trade groups issued statements this afternoon in response to Interior Secretary Ken Salazar’s rather combative press conference (see related story) earlier today announcing the 2010 onshore oil-and-gas leasing schedule.
Here’s American Petroleum Institute President Jack Gerard: “While we appreciate the already anticipated lease sale announcement for 2010, the oil and natural gas industry, which supports 9.2 million American jobs, believes more can be done to expand the economy and create new jobs.  We want to be part of the solution and a constructive partner in a comprehensive energy policy that could create over a hundred thousand new jobs and we are ready to meet with Secretary Salazar to help advance our shared objectives.”

Here’s the Independent Petroleum Association of Mountain States: “It’s important to recognize that developing American clean energy requires a partnership with government and community stakeholders. We are all accountable to the American public to ensure that responsible development occurs. As such, we don’t believe it’s unreasonable to ask the Department of Interior to explain the rationale for its decisions and express concern when trends are not headed in the right direction.”

Salazar said industry associations were inaccurately attacking the administration’s oil-and-gas policies and acting like an opposition political party.