Energy Tomorrow Blog
Posted April 10, 2014
Legislation that would accelerate U.S. exports of liquefied natural gas (LNG) – by approving a backlog of more than 20 export permits pending with the Energy Department and expediting future permit requests for export to World Trade Organization members – cleared an important hurdle in the U.S. House this week.
“In the last few weeks, new proposals have won bipartisan support in both the House and Senate, and we are optimistic that members will come together on efforts to harness the full economic and strategic power of America’s energy exports. The U.S. is the world’s top producer of natural gas, and allies around the globe are looking to America for leadership on energy issues. Now is the time to tear down our own bureaucratic hurdles to trade, create thousands of new American jobs, and strengthen our position as an energy superpower.”
Posted April 4, 2014
It’s hard to overstate the significance of the role that abundant, clean-burning natural gas had in bringing U.S. energy-related carbon dioxide emissions to a 20-year low in 2012. While the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) expected 2013 emissions to inch up – mostly due to increased coal use in electrical generation – the projected level still would be more than 10 percent below where emissions were in 2005.
While lowering CO2 emissions is talked about in various circles, the fact is the United States already is doing it, thanks largely to natural gas – 60 percent of the U.S. total produced with advanced hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling.
Posted April 3, 2014
A competitive marketplace is the sowing field for innovation and investment. Look no further than the advanced hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling that launched America’s ongoing shale energy revolution. Shale development features cutting-edge technology to increase output and efficiency and to make operations as safe and clean as possible. An example of this can be found in methane emissions.
While some call for government-directed efforts to reduce emissions, industry already is on this – through its own leadership and investments – and is achieving good results.
Posted February 6, 2014
The folks at the Energy Collective hosted an interesting webchat discussion of the Keystone XL pipeline the other day, a good part of which focused on greenhouse gas emissions from the project and oil sands development – identified by President Obama as a key basis for his pipeline decision.
The big takeaway here: Even at the high end of estimates in the State Department’s latest Keystone XL environmental review, emissions would be a tiny fraction of global totals – hardly proving that the project would significantly exacerbate climate change.
Posted January 30, 2014
Report: Keystone XL Review by U.S. Expected to be Positive
The Canadian Press: Canadian officials say they're encouraged by what they're hearing about a long-awaited report on the environmental impact of the Keystone XL pipeline that could be released imminently by the U.S. State Department.
Those sources in Washington and Ottawa say they've been told the report could be ready for release within a few days — and that it will bolster the case for the controversial energy project.
"What we're hearing is that it's going to be positive for the project — and therefore positive for Canada," said one diplomat in Washington, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he hadn't seen the report himself, although he had discussed its contents with American contacts.
"The rumours certainly are that it's very thorough and that the analysis will support the project."
Posted January 8, 2014
Two big stories have caught our attention the past two days. First, America’s trade deficit has sunk to a four-year low thanks to falling U.S. imports and increasing exports:
- America’s Trade Deficit is Shrinking. Thank Fracking. http://wapo.st/1cB2eMg
- U.S. Growth Picture Brightens as Exports Hit Record: http://on.wsj.com/K71y72
- Trade Deficit Falls to 4-Year Low: http://lat.ms/1cP1AYf
- How the Booming Oil Patch Helps U.S. Trade: http://buswk.co/1lBmfXY
And second, the growing number of voices calling for ending the decades-old ban on U.S. crude oil exports:
- Murkowski Joins Growing Chorus Calling to Lift Ban on Crude-Oil Exports: http://bit.ly/1eHRzze
- Is Free Trade in Energy Finally on the Horizon? http://bit.ly/1cZzu0W
- U.S. Chamber CEO – End Ban on Crude-Oil Exports: http://bit.ly/1dgBjZ3
Posted December 17, 2013
U.S. Energy Outlook: More Oil, More Natural Gas, Less Carbon. Yay America!
Forbes: The federal government’s Energy Information Administration is out today with an early version of its Annual Energy Outlook for 2014. Their headline finding: that the United States will continue to grow less dependent on foreign oil as the miracle of our tight oil boom adds to supply and more efficient vehicles reduce demand. Yay America!
By their reckoning, domestic crude oil production will continue its surge, adding another 800,000 barrels per day in 2014 and about the same in 2015. By 2016 we should reach 9.5 million barrels per day, approaching the historical high of 9.6 million bpd back in 1970.
The boom won’t last forever, and will level off around 2020. But when domestic oil supplies do start slipping, we won’t feel it too much at first, because our vehicles will be using a lot less fuel.
Read more: http://onforb.es/1gEiWP8
Posted November 25, 2013
The Telegraph: The once-sleepy town of Williston sits on the confluence of the Yellowstone and Missouri rivers in the US state of North Dakota.
Five years ago, Williston had a population of 12,000 and was slowly dying on its feet – an agricultural hub marked out from the plains only by the grain silos that stand silhouetted against the big North Dakota skies.
The fall-out from a brief oil boom in the mid-1980s had left the town with sky-high debts and a main street filled with empty shops and peeling facades. Young people looking for jobs skipped town at the first opportunity.
Today, Williston is booming once again. Its streets are filled with bustling commerce and trucks, its bars, restaurants and supermarkets groaning with customers.
Sudden advancements in the oil drilling techniques known as fracking have reinvigorated the small northern town, its population swelling to an estimated 30,000 as people pour in from across the United States in search of work in hard times.
Read more: http://bit.ly/17NWHRs
Posted November 1, 2013
Lawmakers Urge EPA to Change Fuel Mandate
The Hill: More than 100 lawmakers are calling on Environmental Protection Agency chief Gina McCarthy to reduce the amount of ethanol that oil refiners must blend into gasoline next year.
Signed by 169 House members, the letter sent to McCarthy on Thursday urged the EPA to lower the renewable fuel standard (RFS), arguing the current mandate is unrealistic.
"Whether it’s increasing amounts of ethanol in fuel or higher food and feed prices, the RFS continues to negatively impact American consumers and the economy," Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) said in a statement.
Posted October 24, 2013
U.S. Carbon Emissions Hit Lowest Level Since 1994
USA Today: In a bit of encouraging climate news, the U.S. government reported Monday that U.S. emissions of heat-trapping greenhouse gases from the burning of fossil fuels were lower last year than at any time since 1994.
Driven by efficiency gains, an unusually warm winter and a switch from coal to natural gas, energy-related carbon dioxide emissions actually declined 3.8% in 2012 even though the U.S. economy grew 2.8% that year, according to new data by the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the statistical arm of the Department of Energy.
This emissions decline was the largest in any year that had positive growth in per capita gross domestic product (GDP) — its economic output — and the only drop when GDP rose at least 2%.Read more: http://ti.me/1eNNHNA