Energy Tomorrow Blog
Posted December 15, 2020
Let’s make a couple of points from last week’s EPA actions – one that will bring transparency to some of the agency’s rulemaking processes and another that leaves in place effective standards for microscopic soot.
Transparency first. The goal in EPA’s new benefit-cost rule is pretty straight-forward: Americans should be able to judge whether the benefits of future Clean Air Act regulation are justified by potential costs to society. The new rule will help by requiring that future regulation under the act must be written using sound analyses, where data to evaluate environmental, scientific and economic impacts be transparent and replicable.
Many of the natural gas and oil industry’s opponents reject bringing cost-accountability to the development of regulation. Many of them also subscribe to a more-is-better federal regulatory approach – which gets us to point No. 2.
Posted November 24, 2020
The world changed on 9-11, mine and yours. ...
You’re probably like me. The vivid memories of that day make it hard to believe it happened two whole decades ago. We know now what we may have only sensed then – that 9-11 was an historic pivot point for the United States in terms of our economy, security and the way we approach life.
As president and CEO of the nation’s largest trade association representing the natural gas and oil industry, I’m reminded that 9-11 really helped galvanize our country’s focus on the security of our nation’s infrastructure to harden it against any future acts of terrorism, from our airlines to our supply chains to our energy grid. Natural gas and oil keep America running. After 9-11 we innovated and developed technologies to dramatically increase domestic production and become less dependent on foreign oil. We haven’t looked back; today, the U.S. is the world’s leading producer of the world’s more important energy sources.
9-11 is a big part of the reason that our industry’s approach to assessing risk shifted to a higher gear, to protect our facilities and networks against threats of terrorism – adding risk assessment to API’s body of work on standards that govern the way we operate.
John D. Siciliano
Posted August 27, 2020
Despite the pandemic, API has moved forward with dozens of new safety standards, covering everything from liquefied natural gas (LNG) to pipelines, to manufacturing specifications for offshore wells – ensuring that safety and scientific rigor, through API’s standards program, remain front and center.
We have used this challenging time to help ensure that the natural gas and oil industry is focused on safely and sustainably meeting both the domestic and global need for energy through API’s world-class standards program.
Posted August 11, 2020
On National 811 Day, we’re reminding DIYers to dial before you dig!
After several months of coronavirus-imposed quarantine, Americans are mastering the art of stay-at-home. With all those extra hours of downtime, people confined to their houses and apartments are cooking, crafting, exercising and, apparently, remodeling.
This spring, sales surged for home improvement equipment and materials at retailers like Lowe’s and Home Depot, and recent polling from Bank of America shows that more than 70% of Americans have decided to tackle a DIY renovation project during the pandemic.
Posted June 30, 2020
Good technical standards and industry practices are important to safe, sustainable energy infrastructure that is critical to unleashing the benefits of domestic energy – including clean, affordable natural gas.
Major energy players have pointed to new midstream infrastructure investments in the massive Permian region that will allow them to produce more while also improving environmental performance. In addition, this infrastructure will benefit consumers globally through the export of U.S. natural gas – produced right here at home under stringent regulations, many of which point to API’s world-class safety standards that improve environmental performance and sustainability.
Posted June 15, 2020
During this moment of public health and economic uncertainty, the natural gas and oil industry has taken steps to ensure the integrity of our products and develop new standards that add value for our customers, while bolstering efficiency and sustainability throughout the supply chain.
API has focused squarely on the thriving U.S. liquefied natural gas (LNG) market through our voluntary standards program, and we believe that our best practices and engineering standards are essential to the future of the U.S. LNG export market.
Posted May 18, 2020
America’s extensive network of pipelines and energy infrastructure safely connects our abundant natural gas and oil resources with refineries, businesses and consumers. The U.S. liquids pipeline system, which stretches more than 218,000 miles, delivered 21.8 billion barrels of crude oil and refined products in 2018 – the essential link between domestic energy and Americans’ daily lives.
The industry’s commitment to safety and sustainability, through industry-led reporting, standards-setting and performance initiatives, has contributed to ongoing improvements in pipeline operations. This month, API and our partner associations released two new reports that show declining pipeline-related incidents and continuous improvement in environmental performance – both enhanced by growing use of safety management systems.
John D. Siciliano
Posted April 30, 2020
Meeting short-term crude oil storage challenges has our industry looking at a number of measures to safely route and handle the surplus resulting from the demand decline tied to global efforts to slow the spread of COVID-19.
API President and CEO Mike Sommers told CNBC that the industry is thinking outside the box to find “creative solutions” to ship and store an historic amount of oil beyond its usual means.
To be sure, there also are separate infrastructure challenges in getting crude oil to where there is storage. Many pipelines in the nation’s transportation network are full up or contracted – partly reflecting the country’s infrastructure needs that pre-date COVID-19. That’s a subject for a separate post. The fact remains industry is focused on finding storage as markets rebalance between supply and demand.
John D. Siciliano
Posted April 27, 2020
Enhancing engine protection and performance with the co-benefit of improving fuel economy in cars, trucks, and SUVs is what the public can expect when API’s new engine oil standards go into effect on May 1.
The 18th edition of the API 1509 engine oil standard – Engine Oil Licensing and Certification System (EOLCS) – is a product of industry’s continuous process of updating motor oil specifications to meet the demands of the marketplace and consumers.
For example, the new standard includes a conservation specification to improve fuel economy – in addition to keeping a vehicle’s emissions control systems in check – while also being able to account for the introduction of more renewable fuels into the gasoline supply. This means that oil bearing the API licensing mark can both boost the number of miles driven on a gallon of gasoline, while improving the overall performance of the engine, which is good for consumers and the environment alike.
John D. Siciliano
Posted April 20, 2020
Today is the 10th anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon incident in the Gulf of Mexico. A decade later, offshore energy development has never been safer, largely because of industry leadership in developing new technologies and creating a proactive safety management culture. This is critically important because the offshore accounts for 15% of U.S. oil production. Innovations in infrastructure and deep-sea equipment, plus rigorous safety training, safety protocols and the management tools to ensure those protocols are effective, reflect industry’s commitment to prevent such an incident, in which lives were lost, from happening again. In the Q&A that follows, Debra Phillips, API senior vice president for Global Industry Services, talks about what has been learned and industry’s responses – including hundreds of safety standards – to maximize offshore safety.