Energy Tomorrow Blog
Posted November 14, 2019
Calls for a ban on hydraulic fracturing by some of the Democratic presidential candidates continue to make for discussion on the campaign trail – and boy, that is a discussion everyone should be paying attention to. The stakes are sky-high.
Recently, we highlighted this Michael Lynch analysis warning that a fracking ban could devastate the U.S. economy. Now the Manhattan Institute’s Mark P. Mills has a piece on Real Clear Energy asserting that in the most serious scenarios, banning U.S. fracking could put the global economy in recession – entirely plausible, given that the United States is the leading producer of natural gas and oil, the two energy sources that supply 54% of the globe’s fuel. In all, Mills notes in this report, fossil fuels supply 84% of the world’s energy.
Those are the stakes when candidates kick around the notion of banning hydraulic fracturing, which is used for 95% of new U.S. wells today. Ban fracking and you pull the rug out from under U.S. production – and with it, energy security, global energy leadership and, yes, environmental progress – considering increased U.S. use of natural gas has lowered energy-related carbon dioxide emissions to their lowest levels in a generation.
Posted October 25, 2019
Energy analyst Michael Lynch has a couple of charts in his recent article for Forbes that do a good job of showing the stark repercussions of banning hydraulic fracturing – as a number of Democrats have advocated on the campaign trail.
First, understand that modern, technologically advanced fracking is used for 95% of new wells today. Shale and tight sandstone formations, which need hydraulic fracturing to be economically feasible, accounted for about 69% of total U.S. dry natural gas production in 2018 and 59% of total U.S. crude oil production, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. So, yes, a fracking ban or something approaching it would put a major dent in U.S. production.
Posted February 12, 2019
Recent tweet from the American Enterprise Institute’s Mark Perry includes a chart that vividly illustrates one of the biggest benefits of the U.S. energy revolution. First, it plots soaring U.S. net petroleum imports, which peaked at 60.3 percent in 2005, and then logs the plunge to just 12.1 percent last year. The thing that caught my eye in Perry’s tweet is that the time frame for his graph, 1957-2018, is pretty much the span of this blogger’s life.
Most importantly, in one generation, the United States has gone from steadily growing energy dependency to a nation that’s largely in control of its energy destiny. It’s a turnabout many of Americans never thought possible. Remarkable. Breathtaking. Or, as Perry tweets, amazing.
Posted March 15, 2018
We’ve seen this movie before: Anti-natural gas and oil advocates put out a “study” or a “report” linking cancer, asthma, low birth weights and (fill in the blank) to industry operations. Scare headlines follow – with truth, as it so often does, lagging behind.Frequently, the methodologies used in these studies lead to flawed or flimsy conclusions. For example, it’s poor methodology to confuse health effects correlation with causation. Correlation is two things occurring side by side; causation is proving scientifically that one caused the other.
Posted February 14, 2018
The natural gas and oil industry is continually evaluating the safety of its operations and products while developing research projects, technologies and practices that are designed to protect people and the environment. We acknowledge and appreciate that experts from the regulatory and scientific communities are also conducting studies with the same goals.
A recently published paper that associated endocrine disruption to chemicals used in hydraulic fracturing fluid generated some press attention. Yet, as we compare that study’s findings to other scientific literature, there’s a need for caution when interpreting “what if?” study findings.
Posted January 23, 2018
As the Delaware River Basin Commission (DRBC) considers its proposal to ban hydraulic fracturing in the four-state watershed it oversees, the commission should base its final decision on “sound science.” Those aren’t the natural gas and oil industry’s words; they’re the commission’s – found in its own Vision Statement.
Posted January 4, 2018
Let’s push back a bit on an emerging narrative that suggests the Trump administration’s recent actions to revoke or revise federal rules on natural gas and oil development are part of an anti-regulation movement prompted by our industry that weakens safety and environmental protections.
It’s a false narrative. Industry supports effective regulation that fosters safety and protects the air, land and water – rules that are clear, with tangible benefits that warrant costs and that work in concert with safe and responsible energy development. This goal of effective regulation is advanced by eliminating duplicative and potentially counterproductive rules.
Posted March 29, 2017
Colorado is a national leader in not only producing oil and natural gas but in protecting the environment. Our legacy of environmental stewardship is based on a transparent, collaborative process in which operators, state regulators and local officials work together to develop regulations based on Colorado’s specific geology.
Posted March 1, 2017
Maryland lawmakers pushing for a permanent state ban on hydraulic fracturing should touch base with their constituents first. A new Goucher College poll finds that among those who have an opinion on fracking, most don’t want the state to make the current fracking moratorium permanent. Goucher surveyed 776 people earlier this month and found 40 percent oppose banning hydraulic fracturing, with 36 percent supporting a ban.
Posted February 7, 2017