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Energy Tomorrow Blog

Study: Electric Vehicle Tax Credit is High Cost, Low Reward

electric vehicles  subsidies  consumers  tax payer 

Scott Lauermann

Scott Lauermann
Posted May 21, 2019

Having already shelled out $2.2 billion for the federal tax credit for purchases of electric vehicles (EV) between 2011 and 2017, U.S. taxpayers could see that cost increase seven-fold over the next decade – while yielding negligible results, according to a new study.

Coupled with the fact that upper-income households have bought most of the EVs sold in the U.S. (and benefited from these tax subsidies), the report continues to raise questions about the EV subsidy and legislation that would expand it.

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Price Spikes in New England Limited by Natural Gas – Just Not Ours

consumers  natural gas  liquefied natural gas  imports  marcellus  utica shale 

Jessica  Lutz

Jessica Lutz
Posted May 17, 2019

It seems like each winter we see consumers in New England suffering not just from freezing temperatures but also the highest energy prices in the country (see here and here) – largely because there’s not enough natural gas infrastructure to serve the region during periods of peak winter demand. This past winter, the news was a little bit better.

Natural gas prices generally follow seasonal patterns and tend to rise in the winter. For example, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) has suggested

that liquefied natural gas (LNG) imports  helped to moderate energy price spikes in the region this year. ...

Still, domestic infrastructure constraints in New York and New England mean that residents remain faced with relatively high and uncertain energy prices plus the possibility of winter shortages – not to mention the unnecessary stress those conditions put on the region’s power grid. 

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API, RFA Team Up on New and Updated Gasoline-Ethanol Standards

gasoline  ethanol  safety standards  renewable fuels association 

Debra Phillips

Debra Phillips
Posted May 16, 2019

Updated and new API standards that address the ethanol blended into the nation’s gasoline supply – developed in partnership with the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) – will enhance the natural gas and oil industry’s ability to safely trade and/or ship its products.

Certainly, our industry has disagreed with RFA over policies and specific provisions related to the Renewable Fuel Standard’s mandates for increasing ethanol use in the nation’s gasoline. Even so, we agree on the need for technical standards to help ensure the safe transfer of products and work together to develop them.

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Let’s Win on Trade: Approve USMCA, End Harmful Tariffs and Quotas

trade  canada  mexico  energy exports 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted May 14, 2019

Winning on trade looks like this: 12 million U.S. jobs supported in all 50 states; commerce with neighbors Mexico and Canada was nearly $1.3 trillion in 2017 – four times what it was 25 years ago; in the energy space, trade helps the U.S. natural gas and oil industry, which supports 10.3 million jobs – many of which exist thanks to free North American trade

For these reasons and more, Congress should approve the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), the successor to the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). From an energy standpoint, the case for USMCA approval is strong.

This agreement – as NAFTA did before – would support U.S. natural gas and oil (see here and here) by fostering a fair, level playing field for record-setting U.S. energy exports.

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Connecticut Officials Should Advance Natural Gas-Fueled Power Plant

natural gas  consumers  connecticut  electricity 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted May 14, 2019

Next month the Connecticut Siting Council is scheduled to hold an important vote on a proposed natural gas-fueled power plant near Killingly, the Killingly Energy Center. The plant should get the council’s go-ahead, as it would help meet growing consumer demand while supporting badly needed stability in the regional power grid.

The plant would produce enough electricity for 500,000 homes. In addition to generating electricity, the facility would generate $110 million in local tax revenue over the next two decades while helping the state advance its climate goals (more on that below).

Most importantly, consumers would get needed help. 

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A Model for Environmental Collaboration and Progress

the-environmental-partnership  emission reductions  oklahoma  technology 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted May 10, 2019

A big shout-out to The Environmental Partnership, which in just over a year has more than doubled in size and whose members account for a sizeable portion of U.S. natural gas production. No less significant is what the Partnership is doing to achieve environmental and climate progress.

Indeed, a key to the progress the Partnership has made is its model of substantive, almost unprecedented information sharing and collaboration on technologies and techniques to reduce methane emissions. It’s a model that could be applied to meet other challenges in the future. …

While some opponents of natural gas and oil dismiss the idea that a voluntary, industry-led partnership can lead to important environmental results, the collaborative dynamic that was on display at a recent Partnership workshop in Oklahoma City argues otherwise.

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Make U.S. Gulf Leasing More Competitive

gulf of mexico  leasing  investments  us energy security 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted May 10, 2019

Headlines announcing big oil discoveries in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico (GOM) – such as the Blacktip deepwater find last month – are something we’ve come to expect. Gulf production long has been strategically important to the United States, accounting for 17 percent of total U.S. crude oil production, and it’s easy to take for granted that the basin will just keep producing and producing.

Yet, two recent analyses, IHS Markit’s report for the U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management and a Crystol Energy report, caution that the Central and Western Gulf, currently open to oil and natural gas development, are maturing, having been developed for several decades, and production could begin to decline before long. GOM development must compete globally with other offshore and onshore prospects or face declining interest in exploration, falling investment and decommissioning of critical infrastructure.

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Tariffs Continue to Hurt U.S. Consumers, Not China

trade  china  consumers  taxes 

Jessica  Lutz

Jessica Lutz
Posted May 8, 2019

We can’t say it enough: U.S. consumers, not China, are paying the costs of the administration’s tariffs on Chinese goods – which the administration says will increase on Friday to 25 percent on $200 billion in goods, up from the current 10 percent.

As we’ve noted here, here and here, Americans are the ones hurt by tariffs, which essentially are a tax on consumer goods that millions of U.S. families use.

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Youth, Brainpower and Meeting Energy’s Challenges

offshore technology conference  stem  energy future 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted May 7, 2019

Four students from The Village School in Houston are winners of the Offshore Technology Conference’s high school competition, the OTC Energy Challenge, which focuses students on working on real-world issues. 

They represent the next generation of women and men who no doubt will be at the forefront of meeting future challenges associated with the production and use of energy.


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Enhance and Grow U.S. LNG Trade to the EU

lng exports  trade  russia 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted May 3, 2019

Europe should be a growth market for U.S. natural gas. We share economic and security goals, and it’s important to the U.S. and European Union (EU) that Russia’s use of energy as a political weapon be neutralized.

All of these should foster significant growth in U.S.-EU liquefied natural gas (LNG) trade – much, much more than current levels, which are really just a sliver of the EU’s natural gas needs. There has been progress, but there is potential for the U.S. to supply even more natural gas to the EU.

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