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Energy Tomorrow Blog

Safe Seismic Testing is Key to Atlantic Energy Development

offshore access  atlantic ocs  seismic survey  oil and natural gas  us energy security  safe operations 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted July 21, 2017

Comments related to seismic surveys in the Atlantic that API and two other associations will submit to federal officials stress a number of important points about the underwater tests used to establish the size and location of oil and natural gas reserves -- including the strategic importance of U.S. offshore energy and the demonstrated safety of seismic surveying.

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Advancing Safe Offshore Development

offshore development  ocs leasing plan  seismic survey  safe operations  interior department 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted May 16, 2017

Last month’s presidential executive order aimed at increasing access to U.S. offshore natural gas and oil reserves is starting to bear fruit with two important developments from the Interior Department, which oversees access to federal offshore and onshore resources. … Both are welcome developments. America’s future energy security largely depends on safe development of offshore energy. Increasing access to offshore natural gas is critically important with 94 percent of federal offshore acreage currently off limits.

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Seismic Surveys 101

seismic survey  Offshore  Oil and Gas  development 

Kate Wallace

Kate Wallace
Posted November 8, 2016

With a series of public hearings on proposed federal rules for offshore seismic testing scheduled to begin this week, let’s take a look at the basics on the safe technologies and procedures used to survey for oil and natural gas reserves. These are key as the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) conducts hearings in New Orleans (Nov. 9), Gulfport, Miss. (Nov. 10), Fort Walton Beach, Fla. (Nov. 14), Mobile, Ala. (Nov. 15) and Houston (Nov. 17).

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Safe Testing Advances U.S. Offshore Energy

offshore energy  oil and natural gas  gulf of mexico  seismic  safe operations 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted October 19, 2016

Advances in seismic imaging technology and data processing over the last decade have dramatically improved the industry’s ability to locate oil and natural gas offshore. And those energy sources – especially in the Gulf – can be harnessed to create hundreds of thousands of jobs, help American consumers and strengthen our national energy security.

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U.S. Energy, U.S. Opportunity

news  natural gas development  bp  energy exports  north dakota  permian basin  e15  seismic 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted June 9, 2015

BP Magazine – Why is natural gas the fuel of the future? Despite pressures on the industry today – with gas prices down and capital investment under pressure – longer term trends still point to the increasing significance of natural gas in the energy mix. BP Magazine looks at some of the numbers behind the story of the world’s strongest-growing and cleanest fossil fuel.

Over the next 20 years, natural gas is expected to catch up with oil and coal and emerge as the main hydrocarbon component of a more sustainable energy mix. The fastest-growing fossil fuel – which is primarily methane – is mainly used for power generation, as well as in homes, offices, shops and other commercial locations for heating and cooling. It’s also a raw material in the production of fertilizer and other chemicals – and it is sometimes used as a fuel for transport as well.

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Energy Policy is Linked to Energy Security

news  energy exports  liquefied natural gas  lng  fracking  economic growth  e15  ethanol  seismic survey 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted April 28, 2015

EIA: In its recently released Annual Energy Outlook 2015 (AEO2015), EIA expects the United States to be a net natural gas exporter by 2017. After 2017, natural gas trade is driven largely by the availability of natural gas resources and by world energy prices. Increased availability of domestic gas or higher world energy prices each increase the gap between the cost of U.S. natural gas and world prices that encourages exports of liquefied natural gas (LNG), and, to a lesser extent, greater exports by pipeline to Mexico.

The AEO2015 examines alternate cases with higher and lower world oil price assumptions, which serve as a proxy for broader world energy prices given oil-indexed contracts, as well as with higher assumed U.S. oil and natural gas resources. These assumptions significantly affect projected growth in annual net LNG exports after 2017. Net LNG exports make up most of the natural gas exports in most cases. By 2040, LNG exports range from 0.2 trillion cubic feet (Tcf) in the Low Oil Price case to 10.3 Tcf in the High Oil and Gas Resource case. For comparison, 2040 natural gas net exports by pipeline range from 1.1 Tcf in the High Oil Price case to 2.9 Tcf in the High Oil and Gas Resource case.

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Safe Seismic Testing – Setting the Record Straight Part II:

analysis  seismic survey  oil and natural gas development  offshore exploration  boem  atlantic ocs 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted April 24, 2015

Last summer we posted on the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management’s gentle pushback against various voices that objected to BOEM’s decision to allow safe, carefully regulated seismic testing to map offshore energy reserves in the Atlantic. The pushback apparently prompted some pushback, because last month BOEM reasserted the facts on safe seismic in its online “Science Notes” feature.

As was the case last August, BOEM Chief Environmental Officer William Y. Brown weighed in:

In August 2014, BOEM published a Science Note addressing a few fundamentals about impacts of seismic air gun surveys on marine mammal populations. … BOEM's conclusion regarding the impact of these surveys is in stark contrast with public statements citing BOEM research and asserting that many thousands of marine mammals will be killed or injured through these surveys. For example, one web posting states that “Seismic air gun testing currently being proposed in the Atlantic will injure 138,000 whales and dolphins and disturb millions more, according to government estimates.” This characterization of our conclusion, however, is not accurate; that is actually not what we estimate.

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North Carolina’s Energy Opportunity

north carolina  oil and natural gas development  economic growth  offshore energy development  outer continental shelf  seismic survey  safe operations 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted October 8, 2014

Energy already is generating benefits for North Carolina and its economy, and things could get a lot better with the right oil and natural gas policies in place – an important point as North Carolinians get ready to vote in a U.S. Senate race that has national implications.

Advanced hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling could get under way early next year with the finalizing of state rules for safe and responsible development.  

This fits with recent polling showing that strong majorities of registered North Carolina voters support increased domestic oil and natural gas production, including 91 percent who say more production could lead to more U.S. jobs and 89 percent who say more oil and gas could help stimulate the economy.

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Science and Seismic Surveys

seismic survey  offshore development  boem  oil and natural gas  regulation 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted August 25, 2014

Worth reading: this presentation on the facts about offshore seismic surveying from the U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) in its August “Science Notes” newsletter. It’s prefaced by William Y. Brown, chief environmental officer for BOEM, who focuses on the public discussion that has followed the agency’s July announcement that it would allow safe seismic testing off portions of the Atlantic coast:

I wanted to take some time to clear up a few misperceptions about the bureau's decision and what it means. As a scientist who has spent a good part of my career working in non-governmental environmental organizations and in industry, I understand and appreciate advocacy. At the same time, I believe that everyone benefits by getting the facts right.

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Better Planning For a Better Energy Future

offshore access  oil and natural gas development  regulation  seismic survey  leasing plan  economic growth  outer continental shelf 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted June 16, 2014

With the Interior Department turning its attention to the next five-year offshore leasing plan, here’s a figure to keep in mind: 87 percent. That’s how much of our federal offshore acreage is off limits for energy development – and it’s costing us energy, jobs and economic growth.

Andy Radford, API senior policy advisor, set out some of the arguments for increasing access to energy reserves in the next five-year leasing plan during a conference call with reporters.

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