T. Boone Pickens was the keynote witness at the Congressional Natural Gas Caucus’s very first hearing yesterday. “We are swimming in natural gas,” declared the energy industry legend, who went on to add that natural gas was “going to be the bridge to the next transportation fuel.”

The Natural Gas Caucus is a bipartisan effort to educate, promote awareness of, and develop policy in Congress on the importance of natural gas in our nation’s energy portfolio. Congressmen Tim Murphy (R-PA) and Dan Boren (D-OK) joined forces to form the caucus earlier this month with the intent of increasing and expanding the use of environmentally-friendly natural gas to help America develop greater energy security.

“Western Pennsylvania is America’s energy capital, and the world was literally built by Pittsburgh energy. We had the first oil well and the first commercial nuclear power plant. Andrew Carnegie didn’t manufacture steel here because we had iron ore. It is because we had coal, and the water resources to transport it. Our region sits on top of a 250-year supply of coal, and we are also right in the heart of the heart of Marcellus Shale find, one of the largest natural gas reserves in the country,” said Rep. Murphy when launching the caucus.

“To grow our economy, and reduce our dependence on foreign sources of energy we can use natural gas to heat our homes, fuel our cars, and light our offices. But, natural gas is not just a flame that heats the kettle on your stove – it is used in chemical production, manufacturing, and transportation. And the possibilities of natural gas continue to grow,” Murphy added.

“Oklahomans have long known the benefits of natural gas as a domestically produced, cleaner energy source. We have a long and proud legacy of contributing to our nation’s energy supply. However, recent studies have shown that natural gas is also an abundant domestic fuel that will help us reduce our dependence on foreign energy supplies. A growing number of states across the nation are beginning to focus on newly discovered deposits that will help bring much needed jobs to local communities and revenue production to state economies. I am honored to join Congressman Murphy and several other colleagues to form the Natural Gas Caucus in the U.S. House,” Boren said.

Read more about the caucus’s first hearing HERE.