We hear a lot of calls to expand drilling for oil here at home. And, Republican gubernatorial candidate Kenny Hulshof (R-MO) embraces that idea. But when he calls for drilling at home … he means right here in Missouri.

Hulshof has introduced a proposal to encourage exploration of Missouri’s oil and gas resources while, at the same time, promoting investment in this state for increased production and refinement of those resources.

Oil in Missouri? Absolutely. According to Hulshof, experts estimate Missouri has anywhere from 1.4-billion to 1.9-billion barrels of heavy oil in the western part of the state. Extracting and refining heavy oil is expensive and is not economically viable when the price of a barrel of oil is around or below the $50 mark, but with current prices topping the $100 mark, pumping heavy oil out of the ground and refining it might not be such a bad idea, after all.

Hulshof’s plan would address what he sees as a lack of reliable information, research, and energy infrastructure holding back his proposal to drill in the Show-Me State. To that end, he wants to accurately document the extent of Missouri’s energy supply, fund exploration research, and construct an oil refiner in Missouri.