By Geneva Sands - 01/26/12 06:38 PM EST
"For decades Americans have been talking about how we decrease our dependence on foreign oil — well, my administration has actually begun to do something about it" said Obama at a Nevada UPS facility.
The president announced that his administration would open around 38 million acres in the Gulf of Mexico for oil production and development.
"Even with all this oil production we only have about 2 percent of the world's oil reserves, so we have to have an all out, all in, all of the above strategy," he said.
Obama also promoted the potential for natural gas. "We've got a supply of natural gas under our feet that can last America nearly 100 years,” he said. “And developing it could power our cars and our homes in a cleaner and cheaper way.”
Obama has faced pressures from Republican lawmakers who want him to push for greater domestic oil production, but the administration has been careful to not alienate environmental groups ahead of the president’s 2012 re-election effort.
The president noted his efforts to protect the environment.
“Over the last three years, we negotiated the toughest new efficiency standards for cars and trucks in history,” he said.
He praised UPS, which received $5.6 million under the stimulus law to construct a public liquefied natural gas (LNG) fueling station and develop natural-gas vehicles.
"Of course UPS was one of the first. That's how they roll," Obama said, praising the shipping company for developing a fleet less reliant on oil and drawing cheers from the crowd.
Obama, who is on a swing through key election states promoting his State of the Union agenda, will continue to push his energy proposals later today in Colorado.
For more on Obama's energy strategy on The Hill's E2 blog, click here.