WASHINGTON -- Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., who visited Israel last weekend along with Gulf Coast oil and gas executives, observed first-hand how much the Mideast nation has in common with the United States. During an energy conference, the discussions got very heated on whether Israel should move forward and develop recently discovered oil and natural gas resources.
As is the case in the United States, environmentalists have objections to some energy projects, particularly oil shale production that they consider a threat to groundwater.
Landrieu told a reporter from the Jerusalem Post that it reminded her of debates back in the days when she served in the Louisiana Legislature. In an interview after her return, Landrieu said she sees the discovery of large oil and natural gas resources as a potential game changer that will help Israel become energy independent.?
It will give the nation more security from sudden cutoffs of imported energy, while saving its residents from paying the often exorbitant prices for imports, Landrieu said.
The senator said Gulf Coast oil and gas companies are prepared to form a partnership with Israel, including its technology companies, to safely develop the Israeli oil and gas finds -- a partnership she calls a major plus for both Israel and the United States.