Energy Tomorrow Blog
Posted April 15, 2021
EPA’s latest greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions report shows continued progress in lowering U.S. emissions. A good deal of this progress can be attributed to increased use of domestic natural gas. Some key numbers stand out:
Total GHG emissions fell 1.7% from 2018 to 2019 and have decreased 11.6% since 2005; emissions from the electric power sector have fallen 12.1% since 1990 and 33% since 2005; methane emissions from natural gas systems have decreased 4% since 2005 – even as marketed natural gas production over the same period increased more than 90%; emissions from abandoned oil and natural gas wells have fallen 2.9% since 1990, 8% since 2005 and 9.5% since 2018 – reflecting reductions in the official estimate of unplugged, abandoned wells.
EPA gives significant credit for the 1.7% emissions decrease noted above to growing use of cleaner natural gas.
Posted April 14, 2021
Timely, accurate reporting of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions – by our industry and all emitting sectors of the economy – is critically important for our country’s efforts to address the risks of climate change. That’s why enhancing the consistency and comparability of our industry’s GHG reporting is one of the main elements of the Climate Framework action plan API unveiled last month.
As the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) increases its focus on climate and ESG (environmental, social, governance) reporting, let’s just say that the natural gas and oil industry is on it. Not only do we see the value of reporting to stakeholders and the importance of accurate, transparent GHG reporting in developing sound, we want to drive it.
Indeed, industry is well-positioned to be a reporting leader; we’re not newcomers to it.
Posted October 23, 2018
Two stat lines capture the essence of modern natural gas and oil development:
First, the United States produced a record 11 million barrels of oil per day (mbd) in September, 2.2 mbd more than September 2017, according to API’s latest Monthly Statistical Report (MSR). It’s a remarkable output number, given where domestic production was less than two decades ago.
Second point: Just as remarkable is the fact the United States’ world leadership in natural gas and oil production is accompanied by world leadership in cutting greenhouse gas emissions.
Posted September 22, 2017
Here are some of my thoughts after this week’s news that San Francisco and Oakland have filed lawsuits against five oil and natural companies, arguing that the companies should pay for sea walls to protect the cities in case ocean levels rise due to changing climate:
First, the courts aren’t the place to address climate change policy. This is a complex, global issue that requires global engagement in the public square, not in a courtroom. In this country, elected officials debate public policy issues and then take appropriate action. Lawsuits of the type filed this week tend to serve special interests, polarize people and hinder real solutions.The second point is action. Contrary to the lawsuit’s assertions, our industry is a leader on climate action, working to reduce emissions as part of a broader solution to those challenges. Since 2000 our industry has invested nearly $90 billion in emissions-reducing technologies – almost as much as the rest of U.S.-based private industries combined and more than twice the amount invested by each of the next three industry sectors.
Posted February 23, 2017
When the U.S. Senate returns to work, repealing the Bureau of Land Management’s “venting and flaring rule” should be a top priority. The redundant and technically flawed rule, which went into effect last month, could negatively impact production – some say it already has. The House has voted for repeal under the Congressional Review Act (CRA), and the Senate should follow the House’s lead.
Posted June 9, 2016
Competitive forces and industry innovation continue to drive technological advances and produce clean-burning natural gas, which has led to reducing carbon emissions from power generation to their lowest level in more than 20 years, making it clear that environmental progress and energy production are not mutually exclusive.
Posted June 3, 2016
As social media really wants you to know, today is National Doughnut Day, so whether you spell it long or go with donut for short, here are an "energy dozen" to take in while enjoying your tasty treat.
Posted December 14, 2015
The New York Times reports that weekend exultation over the new global climate agreement was quickly replaced by the realization that talking about emissions goals in Paris could be dwarfed by what it takes to produce actual results:
Before the applause had even settled … world leaders warned that momentum from the historic accord must not be allowed to dissipate. “Today, we celebrate,” said Miguel Arias Cañete, the European Union’s energy commissioner and top climate negotiator. “Tomorrow, we have to act.” With nearly every nation on Earth having now pledged to gradually reduce emissions of the heat-trapping gases … much of the burden for maintaining the momentum shifts back to the countries to figure out, and carry out, the concrete steps needed to deliver on their vows.
Actually, the figuring out part has been done and real emissions reductions have been realized in the United States – without the heavy hand of government, without one-size-fits-all frameworks, without economy-hamstringing interventions.
Posted November 30, 2015
In finalizing ethanol volume requirements under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), the EPA is basically testing the limits of the ethanol “blend wall” and the potential impacts of breaching it. Unfortunately, the guinea pigs in the experiment are U.S. consumers – their wallets, their vehicles.
That’s what we draw from EPA’s requirements for levels of corn ethanol and other renewable fuels that must be blended into the U.S. fuel supply. EPA officially set requirements for 2014 (two years late), 2015 (a year late) and 2016. Requirements for 2016 are the most significant – 18.11 billion gallons, which is lower than what Congress originally required when it created the RFS, but higher than what EPA proposed in May (17.4 billion gallons).
Posted October 8, 2015
These things are true:
- The U.S. gets the majority of its energy from oil and natural gas, and is projected to continue to do so for decades.
- Since 2005 U.S. production of natural gas is up 43 percent.
- Since 2008 U.S. production of crude oil is up 88 percent.
- U.S. air quality continues to improve, with concentrations of carbon monoxide down 60 percent, ozone down 18 percent, lead 87 percent, nitrogen dioxide 43 percent, particulate matter 35 percent and sulfur dioxide 62 percent since 2000.
- The federal U.S. budget deficit for FY2015 was $435 billion.
- The U.S. trade deficit rose in August as exports hit a three-year low.
- Since 2008 our working age population has grown by over 16 million, while employment is up 8.5 million, leaving the U.S. at odds with trends in other countries.
- U.S. poverty and wages are stagnant, and it is getting harder for people to move beyond a minimum-wage job.
- Americans' trust in the federal government's ability to handle domestic problems has reached a new low.
These things are true, and thus, when presented with bipartisan legislation to reduce consumer fuel costs and the trade deficit while increasing U.S. investment, domestic crude oil production, GDP and government revenues and creating good paying jobs – all via U.S. crude oil exports – the White House obviously had no choice but to … threaten to veto it.