Lisa Jackson waded further into the gas wars in an appearance in New Jersey, where she both supported state regulation of hydraulic fracturing and said: "I believe fracking as a technology is perfectly capable of being clean. But it requires people who are doing it and the innovators who create technology to make sure it be done right." www.nj.com/business/index.ssf/2012/02/epa_chief_says_fracking_regula.html. Her words stirred critical comments at the paper and challenge those who wish to ban the practice or federalize regulation.
Meanwhile, in Houston at the Winter NAPE conference, various speakers in the oil and gas industry turned the conference into a session of bashing President Obama. fuelfix.com/blog/2012/02/22/nape-conferences-focuses-criticism-on-obama/.
Perhaps someone at NAPE thanked Lisa Jackson for her support of hydraulic fracturing, when it is the object of concerted attack. Or perhaps someone at NAPE thanked Lisa Jackson and the President for their support for both the Cross State Air Pollution and the Air Toxic Rule that will increase natural gas demand more than any other policy decision and that have been attacked rabidly by Congressional Republicans.
Right now, the biggest problem facing the gas industry is not production but demand for gas. It is too low, given the huge supplies. President Obama has done more to support using more gas than any other President ever.
While the President's administration is being attacked from both the Ban Fracking and Drill Baby Drill camps, even though US gas production is at record levels and oil production is rising, the President's poll ratings today are strong and getting stronger. Possibly most Americans are in the middle of the road--not comfortable with loud extremes.