Energy Tomorrow Blog
Posted October 1, 2021
Natural gas prices have entered rarified territory due to demand outpacing production and supply, creating headwinds for the Biden administration’s emissions reduction goals and potentially impacting the energy cost savings consumers have enjoyed since the U.S. energy revolution launched more than a decade ago.
Prices in Asia Pacific (Japan-Korea) settled at $29.20 per million Btu (mmBtu) on Sept. 27 – their highest on record since 2012. Meanwhile, U.S. natural gas prices of nearly $5.50 per mmBtu at Henry Hub were relatively inexpensive compared with international ones but rose to their highest for the month since 2008. Natural gas prices like these are unusual for the fall, before there’s reason to believe the approaching winter could be particularly cold.
Posted May 25, 2021
New, independent analysis says that the U.S. can rapidly reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by using natural gas as a co-fuel at coal power plants – pointing to another reason domestic natural gas is key to a cleaner future.
The analysis by Resources for the Future (RFF) outlines how EPA could foster natural gas cofiring at coal plants to reduce emissions. Authors Maya Domeshek and Dallas Burtraw write that a modest cofiring standard at coal plants can reduce carbon emissions significantly and rapidly and that adding a cofiring standard to other national electricity policies also accelerates emissions reductions.
Posted February 28, 2020
Some welcome news from the International Energy Agency (IEA) this month on global carbon dioxide emissions. IEA’s report finds that global energy-related carbon dioxide emissions flattened in 2019 – even as the world economy expanded by 2.9% – in large part due to the increased use of natural gas. And closer to home, the news gets even better. The U.S. recorded the largest emissions decline of any country, down 140 million tons (Mt) from the previous year.
Posted January 15, 2020
Over the past decade, coal-to-natural gas switching in power generation has driven domestic emissions reductions, positioning America at the leading edge of climate and air quality progress. And last year, U.S. greenhouse gas emissions fell by 2.1% – almost entirely due to a decline in coal consumption, according to new analysis from the Rhodium Group.
The increase of cleaner-burning natural gas in electricity production accounts for much of this positive development, as natural gas emits about half the carbon compared to coal combustion. In 2019, coal-fired power generation fell by an estimated 18%, the largest year-on-year decline on record, and related emissions dropped by 190 million metric tons – equivalent to the amount of carbon sequestered by nearly 250 million acres of U.S. forests in one year.
Posted August 23, 2018
Domestic natural gas abundance – safely developed with modern hydraulic fracturing and high-tech horizontal drilling – has benefitted consumers and the economy while reducing greenhouse gas emissions and helping make our air cleaner.
Sustaining and growing those benefits largely depends on market growth for natural gas – to add production that production must have new and/or growing markets to supply. Policy can affect the potential for that market growth. The U.S. Energy Department’s (DOE) continued push to bail out failing coal and nuclear plants is a prime example.
Posted July 19, 2018
As it turns out, you can put a dollar figure on the cost to prop up failing coal and nuclear plants, and that figure could reach $35 billion a year — cost that could largely impact American consumers and/or taxpayers, for no discernible improvement to the nation's electric grid.
The Trump administration has used grid reliability, “resilience” and, more recently, national security as reasons for the government to bail out coal and nuclear plants – claims we’ve rebutted. Now we can add ‘exorbitant potential cost to the American people’ to the list of reasons why propping up coal and nuclear is a bad idea.
Posted June 25, 2018
The notion that failing coal and nuclear plants need to be propped up by Washington continues to be advanced by some in the administration and, of course, members of the industries that would benefit from bailouts – usually by attacking natural gas and its infrastructure. In recent months we’ve rebutted their claims that the nation’s electricity grid is at risk and that natural gas has reliability issues as a fuel for power generation, especially during extremely cold weather. We’ve also pushed back on their assertion that there’s a heightened risk of cyber attack for natural gas infrastructure.
Next up: A flawed report about an impending wave of nuclear plant retirements, apparently to stoke anxiety and build support for the cause.
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Jane Van Ryan
Posted April 13, 2011
Jane Van Ryan
Posted March 21, 2011
Jane Van Ryan
Posted December 20, 2010