By Amie Parnes - 03/03/12 11:23 AM EST
President Obama called on Congress Saturday to stop using federal dollars to subsidize the oil industry and put an end to a so-called "taxpayer giveaway."
Saying that every year $4 billion in taxpayer money goes to subsidizing the oil industry, Obama urged lawmakers to put an end to corporate welfare.
He asked Americans to "email, call or tweet" their representatives to tell them "to stop fighting for oil companies" and "to start fighting for working families."
In the address, Obama reiterated, as he has in recent days, that the country is "making progress" in taking control of its energy future. But he repeated his call for an "all-of-the-above" strategy which would develop other sources of energy — not just oil drilling.
"We can't just drill our way out of this problem," Obama said. "While we consume 20 percent of the world's oil, we only have 2 percent of the world's oil reserves."
In the GOP's address, House Natural Resources Chairman Doc Hastings charged that Obama's "administration has proposed costly regulations that would hurt the supply of other domestic sources."
Obama said a "priority" of his has been to develop new technology "that will help us use new forms of energy."
He said because of investments his administration has made clean, renewable energy has almost doubled, creating new jobs for thousands of Americans.
In his address, Obama also touted his administration's new fuel efficiency standards, which would inevitably help Americans save money when they fill up their gas tanks. The move will also reduce the nation's dependence on oil overseas.
Obama said the new standards would help ease the high cost of fuel at the pump but he added, "there's no silver bullet for avoiding gas prices every year.
"There's no shortcut to taking control of our energy future," he said.