Franklin D. Roosevelt

Letter on Legislation for a National Policy in Oil Conservation.

July 22, 1939

My dear Mr. Chairman:

On February 15, 1939, I transmitted to the Congress a report on Energy Resources by the National Resources Committee wherein certain recommendations were made relative to oil and gas problems in the United States.

I believe it is consistent with these recommendations to invite the attention of your committee to the desirability of the early enactment of legislation which will provide a coordinated national policy in oil conservation. To my mind the legislation should be designed to prevent avoidable waste in the production of oil and gas in the United States.

As you know, despite the progress which has been made toward oil conservation under State law and regulation the production of petroleum is attended by waste. In view of the vital part which petroleum plays in the national defense as well as its importance in commerce and industry the prevention of waste in petroleum production should be the subject of an enactment by the Congress.

I appreciate the thoroughness with which the Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce conducted the petroleum investigation in 1934 in response to H.R. 441; but in the light of changes that have taken place, I believe the Committee may wish to study developments since that time by investigation and hearings prior to the next session of the Congress. To this end, and with a view to the enactment of suitable legislation in the next session, I request that the petroleum conservation bill which I today discussed with you and Representative Cole be introduced at this session.

Sincerely yours,

Hon. Clarence F. Lea,

Chairman, Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce,

House of Representatives

Franklin D. Roosevelt, Letter on Legislation for a National Policy in Oil Conservation. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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