Energy Tomorrow Blog
Posted December 12, 2019
News that the Rev. Jesse Jackson Sr. is bringing attention to the need for a natural gas pipeline to serve an impoverished area near Chicago makes a lot of sense. No person should be preparing for the approaching winter without clean, reliable heat, which natural gas provides.
Unfortunately, people living in the Pembroke Township area south of Chicago near the Indiana state line don’t have natural gas and are facing just such a challenge. The area’s median income is about $16,000 a year, it suffers from 30% unemployment and has a 33.9% poverty rate. ...
The plight of Pembroke Township, like others we’ve noted, is a reminder that access to affordable, reliable energy is critically important not only for comfort and convenience, but also for health, particularly among low-income Americans.
Posted December 5, 2019
This week The Environmental Partnership marks two years of progress in further reducing emissions by 69 participating natural gas and oil companies, working together to improve their environmental performance.
The participants – who represent 32 of the top 40 natural gas producers – have achieved rapid participation growth, with membership nearly tripling; and 156,000 surveys conducted in 2018, inspecting more than 56 million components. These found only 0.16% of participant components needed repair, and 99% were resolved within 60 days.
Posted November 22, 2019
Our newest video reminds everyone how much the United States has gained from the energy revolution – record-breaking, world-leading production of natural gas and oil – with clips of presidents from both political parties over the years, urgently calling for lower oil imports. They knew America’s national security was tied to increasing the nation’s energy security. …
Presidents since Jimmy Carter in the late 1970s recognized that ever-increasing oil imports meant increasing dependency on others for energy. … That changed with the energy revolution. …
The question, as we’ve posed in recent posts (see here and here), is why anyone would erase these gains by banning hydraulic fracturing, as some candidates for president have advocated. Why would America reject its own natural gas and oil abundance and go back to an era of energy scarcity?
Posted November 21, 2019
Some important data points from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) on the country’s emissions of carbon dioxide, a critically important greenhouse gas and a key to U.S. progress on climate goals:
First, as we noted in this recent post, EIA projects U.S. energy-related CO2 emissions this year will go down from the previous year. Broader context: Our nation’s CO2 emissions haven’t been this low since 1987. Second, EIA says the overall carbon intensity of the U.S. economy – the amount of carbon dioxide that is emitted per unit of energy consumed – declined in 2018.
This is especially important in electricity generation, a major source of emissions. EIA says that switching fuels for generation, from coal to natural gas, has played an important role in reducing U.S. carbon intensity.
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 November 13, 2019
Our industry is committed to creating climate solutions now and for the future. As energy producers, natural gas and oil companies are essential to a credible, national climate conversation – since this often is focused on energy production and use.
It’s also real and practical. We’re innovating new technologies and procedures for real-world results – to continue reducing emissions while also supplying the natural gas and oil our nation needs to be growing, prosperous and secure.
That’s why initiatives such as the U.S. Senate’s new bipartisan climate caucus are needed to help spur a solutions-centered discussion at the highest levels in Washington, so we can pragmatically and effectively see progress – both on climate and our country’s fundamental energy needs.
Posted November 1, 2019
The U.S. as a global leader in natural gas exports is underlined by a new government report showing that through the first six months of this year, U.S. net natural gas exports averaged 4.1 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) – more than doubling 2018’s average net exports. This follows analysis that the U.S. became a net exporter of natural gas on an annual basis for the first time in 60 years in 2017.
These figures are significant for a number of reasons:
First, they attest to the strength of domestic natural gas production, which continues to set records – largely thanks to shale production enabled by safe hydraulic fracturing. … Second, expanding markets for U.S. natural gas helps support more domestic production – which means jobs, investments and other economic growth.Third, growing exports of clean natural gas means other nations may realize the environmental benefits from increased use of natural gas.
Posted October 28, 2019
America’s natural gas and oil industry continues to work for Americans – with revenues from production on federal and Native American-owned lands and offshore areas driving $11.69 billion in federal disbursements back to the states, counties, tribes and reclamation and conservation programs. That’s $2.76 billion more than the previous fiscal year and nearly double the disbursements in FY2016, the Interior Department said.
Recipients included: $2.44 billion to states and counties, $1.76 billion to the reclamation fund, $1.14 billion to Native American tribes and individual mineral owners, $1 billion to the Land and Water Conservation Fund and $4.9 billion to the U.S. treasury.
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 October 24, 2019
As the New York Times launches another attack on congressionally mandated support for U.S. offshore development in the Gulf of Mexico, some facts are in order:
The Deep Water Royalty Relief Act enacted by Congress in 1995 was designed to help spur deep water offshore production as the U.S. faced increasing dependence on imported oil – and the courts found that its intent is clear. Background on the act here and here.
The false claim that there is a royalty relief “loophole,” asserted by the Times and others, omits the fact that between 2000 and 2018 natural gas and oil companies paid more than $122 billion to the government in high bids, royalties and rents. Add to that tens of billions the industry spent to develop those leases, creating jobs and boosting local and regional economies – an integral part of industry’s $1.3 trillion overall support for the U.S. economy.
Today, U.S. Gulf production is setting records, averaging 1.8 million barrels per day (b/d) in 2018 and expected by the government to reach 1.9 million b/d this year and 2 million b/d in 2020. This production generates millions in revenue-sharing dollars for coastal states, as well as the Land and Water Conservation Fund, which supports state conservation and outdoor recreation projects all across the country.