Energy Tomorrow Blog
John D. Siciliano
Posted April 2, 2021
Not as noticed in the Biden administration’s halt in new federal natural gas and oil leasing is the possible impact on U.S. offshore production. If the pause were to become a permanent leasing and development ban, nearly 15% of total U.S. oil production could be affected – with significant potential consequences for our country’s energy security and economic growth.
Offshore development not only is critical for our country’s future, it’s safer than ever – underscored by a report issued late last year by the U.S. Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE).
Posted December 8, 2020
Efficient, safe and responsible natural gas and oil development doesn’t just create jobs and produce the energy that powers our lives – it also funds the conservation programs and public services Americans across the country rely on.
Despite this year’s demand downturn, more than $8 billion from energy development on federal lands and waters in fiscal year 2020 will be disbursed to states and Native American mineral owners, providing funding for conservation programs, schools, infrastructure projects and other public services across the country, according to the latest report from the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Office of Natural Resources Revenue (ONRR).
For decades, the natural gas and oil industry has directly contributed to outdoor recreation and environmental conservation, and critical public programs, not only in high-producing states but in communities across the country.
Posted November 13, 2020
Some initial thoughts on energy policy as we look ahead to a new administration and Congress.
First, as API President and CEO Mike Sommers said over the weekend, natural gas and oil will continue to play an important role in the United States’ continued economic recovery – recognizing that, as the leading energy sources for the U.S. economy, the two are essential for growth. ...
Our country needs Washington focused on economic recovery and forward-thinking about energy and climate change, factoring in how much energy will be needed when the U.S. and global economies ramp up (see API Chief Economist Dean Foreman’s post, here), while building on reductions in emissions to date and fostering innovation that will enable a safe, secure and cleaner future. To that point, our industry supports continued development and wider deployment of carbon capture, utilization and storage as a tool to further reduce emissions, which the president-elect also supports.
Posted October 16, 2020
We’ve discussed the significant national impacts of policies touted by some (see here and here) that would effectively stop new natural gas and oil leasing and development on federal lands and waters, potentially weakening U.S. security, killing jobs, raising household energy costs and more.
The national numbers could be big and alarming. Still, most Americans probably can relate more easily to potential impacts where they live, work and raise their families. This post zeroes in on New Mexico. Another state where the potential is large for job losses, reduced economic activity and decreased revenues – for education and other state and local priorities – is Louisiana.
A new ICF analysis shows much is at stake in banning new federal leasing and development for Louisiana, which ranked third in the nation in 2019 natural gas production and ninth in oil production as of June 2020, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA).
Posted September 14, 2020
A national policy that puts U.S. energy off-limits to development would have serious negative impacts for our nation’s security, jobs, the economy and household budgets. As argued in this post, proponents of policies that ban new natural gas and oil development on federal lands and waters have a lot of explaining to do.
Unfortunately, it also includes the White House, which announced this week that there will be no offshore oil and natural gas development in the Eastern Gulf of Mexico and South Atlantic going forward, into the year 2032.
This is wrong for U.S. energy, wrong for American security, wrong for jobs and wrong for economic growth.
Posted September 9, 2020
Four questions for proponents of policies that would effectively end new natural gas and oil development on federal lands and waters:
Where will the oil come from that won’t be produced here at home because of such a policy?
Where will nearly 1 million Americans find new work after this policy costs them their jobs?
What will Americans do without because of higher energy costs resulting from the policy?
How will the U.S. continue making environmental progress if increased coal use caused by the policy raises carbon dioxide emissions?
These and other questions are prompted by a new analysis projecting the effects of halting new natural gas and oil on federal lands and waters -- prepared for API by OnLocation with the U.S. Energy Information Administration's National Energy Modeling System, which EIA uses to produce its Annual Energy Outlook.
Posted July 22, 2020
With the U.S. House scheduled to vote on legislation that would create permanent, dedicated funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF), amazing photos from parks and recreation areas around the U.S. make the case for supporting the country’s most important federal conservation initiative. The beautiful images show just a small fraction of the preservation, history and other outdoor opportunities across the U.S. that benefit from LWCF.
Since 1965 the fund has supplied billions of dollars for parks, conservation and recreation across all 50 states. Virtually all of that money was supplied by safe, responsible offshore oil and natural gas development. As we noted last month, when the legislation was moving through the U.S. Senate, the Wilderness Society says LWCF has been “America’s most important conservation funding tool for nearly 50 years.”
Posted June 11, 2020
Practical, safe, and responsible offshore energy development doesn’t just create jobs and power our lives – it also funds America’s largest federal conservation program. For decades, the natural gas and oil industry has directly contributed to outdoor recreation and environmental conservation, thanks to a long-standing law that would be strengthened by legislation that is up for a vote in the U.S. Senate.
Senators will soon vote on S. 3422, the Great American Outdoors Act, a bipartisan bill that would codify a permanent funding stream for the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) and address a considerable maintenance and construction backlog on public lands.
Posted June 2, 2020
Whenever someone talks about banning offshore oil and natural gas development, as some in Congress have proposed, they miss the fact that offshore oil and gas pays for the country’s most important conservation program, the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF).
Everyone who cares about coastal restoration, wetlands protection, park upkeep, building hiking paths and other recreational areas should be aware that since 1965 the LWCF has supplied billions of dollars for conservation and environmental projects across the 50 states, from Grand Canyon National Park to the Cape Hatteras National Seashore – almost entirely funded by safe and responsible offshore oil and natural gas development.
The Wilderness Society puts it this way: “The Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) has been America’s most important conservation funding tool for nearly 50 years.”
John D. Siciliano
Posted May 20, 2020
Capt. Russell Holmes is the Center for Offshore Safety’s (COS) new director after serving for nearly three decades with the U.S. Coast Guard.
Holmes, who retired from the Coast Guard in 2020, takes over for Charlie Williams, who had led the center since 2012 after a long industry career. Holmes will be taking the center’s mission of offshore safety and environmental protection into its second decade of existence.
The center was created soon after the 2010 Deepwater Horizon incident in the Gulf of Mexico. Since then, the COS has enhanced the safety culture in offshore operations, while supporting federal regulations that mandate Safety and Environmental Management Systems (SEMS) at all operations on the Outer Continental Shelf.
Just prior to joining the center, Holmes served as the Coast Guard’s senior point of contact for offshore safety in the Gulf, overseeing marine inspection and investigation programs that ultimately support SEMS. As he explains in the Q&A below, Holmes says the industry’s professionalism and safety commitment matched his while he was serving as one of industry’s lead regulators.