Energy Tomorrow Blog
Posted January 28, 2019
The reopening of the federal government is welcome news for everyone. As one of the country’s most regulated sectors, the natural gas and oil industry urged resolution, recognizing the important federal role in our nation’s energy sector – including infrastructure project review, issuing permits and other activities.
That said, we’ll point out that during the shutdown, industry operated safely and efficiently each and every day, providing the natural gas and oil that support economic expansion, deliver valuable benefits to consumers, strengthen U.S. security and help advance progress on climate and environmental goals.
Industry’s commitment to regulatory compliance was unaffected by the shutdown, including regulation by EPA, the Bureau of Land Management, the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, the U.S. Coast Guard and other agencies – as well as state regulations.
Posted October 9, 2018
Posted March 26, 2018
Let’s correct a false narrative out there, that the Trump Administration is rolling back natural gas and oil regulation to benefit industry. A different view is that federal officials are deploying smarter, more efficient, more effective regulation of industry operations, onshore and offshore – which will work best to ensure the safe and well-managed energy development America needs for economic growth and national security, today and well into the future.By smart, efficient and effective regulation we mean clear, commonsense rules that take into account industry’s innovation, advanced technologies and experience, as well as its long, demonstrated commitment to establishing useful standards for operations, equipment and personnel. All of these have strengthened the culture of safety in our industry – particularly in its offshore activities.
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 August 16, 2017
Energy infrastructure projects need the public’s support – which in many ways is tied to industry’s ability to safely develop and deliver natural gas, oil and finished products while protecting communities and the environment. This is the focus and core commitment of the more than 10 million women and men who work directly, indirectly or in jobs supported by the natural gas, oil and refined products industry. Industry-created standards form the bedrock of industry’s safety commitment.
Posted March 27, 2017
Safety is a core value of the oil and natural gas industry – safety for workers, communities near active operations and the environment, from protecting plants and animals to reducing emissions for cleaner air. Safety has continued to grow since the advent of hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling, bringing energy development to more and more areas across the country.
Posted September 14, 2015
Safe, responsible energy development in the Gulf of Mexico is vital to the U.S. economy and job growth, as well as U.S. energy and national security. Each of these points likely will come up during a U.S. House Natural Resources Committee hearing on the impact of federal policies on energy production and economic growth in the Gulf, Tuesday in New Orleans.
Posted April 9, 2015
Three zeroes stand out in the first annual performance report by the Center for Offshore Safety (COS), the oil and natural gas industry-led initiative to promote continuous offshore safety improvement following the 2010 Macondo incident: Zero fatalities, zero loss-of-well-control incidents and zero oil spills equal to or greater than 10,000 gallons in Gulf of Mexico operations.
Posted December 9, 2014
New research by the University of Texas shows what other studies have shown: methane emissions from natural gas production are lower than previously estimated. The UT study found that emissions represent just 0.38 percent of production – about 10 percent lower than a 2013 study by the same research team.
The UT study checked two sources of methane emissions in natural gas production: processes to clear wells of accumulated liquids to increase production, called liquid unloadings; and pneumatic controller devices that open and close valves.
The study found that just 19 percent of pneumatic devices accounted for 95 percent of emissions from that equipment, and that just 20 percent of wells with unloading emissions that vent to the atmosphere accounted for 65 percent to 85 percent of those emissions. David Allen, the study’s principal investigator:
“To put this in perspective, over the past several decades, 10 percent of the cars on the road have been responsible for the majority of automotive exhaust pollution. Similarly, a small group of sources within these two categories are responsible for the vast majority of pneumatic and unloading emissions at natural gas production sites.”
The results suggest that technologies and practices already in use by industry – voluntary efforts and those to comply with federal green completions rules that become standard in January – are working to reduce methane leaks.