You can now read 5 articles in a month for free on BostonGlobe.com. Read as much as you want anywhere and anytime for just 99¢.

Celtics Live

89

102

4th Quarter 6:07

letters

US energy policy has been boon to natural gas, oil sectors for years

I was disappointed to see former John E. Sununu distort the facts in his Dec. 10 op-ed “Best energy policy? None.” The natural gas and oil sectors are longstanding beneficiaries of government support. Indeed, federally funded research has led to innovations as varied as cancer drugs and the Internet — and shale gas drilling techniques.

The Breakthrough Institute showed how multi-decade support from the government, including research and development, tax credits, and price supports, was critical to the shale gas revolution. It was the US Department of Energy that first demonstrated modern hydraulic fracturing and mapping techniques in 1977. As Mitchell Energy’s former vice president, Dan Steward, stated: “The DOE started it, and other people took the ball and ran with it. You cannot diminish DOE’s involvement.”

Continue reading below

These kinds of public-private partnerships are the linchpin of the American innovation engine. Oil exploration and production subsidies totaled $3.5 billion in 2012 alone, according to the Congressional Research Service. Some of these tax breaks have been in the tax code for nearly 100 years.

Rachel Cleetus

Arlington


The writer is senior climate economist at the Union of Concerned Scientists.

Loading comments...

Wake up with today's top stories.

Want each day's news headlines delivered fresh to your
inbox every morning? Just connect with us
in one of the following ways:
or
Please enter a valid email
BostonGlobe.com will never post anything without asking.
Privacy Policy
Subscriber Log In

You have reached the limit of 5 free articles in a month

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week
Marketing image of BostonGlobe.com
Marketing image of BostonGlobe.com