Energy Tomorrow Blog
Posted October 28, 2019
America’s natural gas and oil industry continues to work for Americans – with revenues from production on federal and Native American-owned lands and offshore areas driving $11.69 billion in federal disbursements back to the states, counties, tribes and reclamation and conservation programs. That’s $2.76 billion more than the previous fiscal year and nearly double the disbursements in FY2016, the Interior Department said.
Recipients included: $2.44 billion to states and counties, $1.76 billion to the reclamation fund, $1.14 billion to Native American tribes and individual mineral owners, $1 billion to the Land and Water Conservation Fund and $4.9 billion to the U.S. treasury.
Posted October 25, 2019
Energy analyst Michael Lynch has a couple of charts in his recent article for Forbes that do a good job of showing the stark repercussions of banning hydraulic fracturing – as a number of Democrats have advocated on the campaign trail.
First, understand that modern, technologically advanced fracking is used for 95% of new wells today. Shale and tight sandstone formations, which need hydraulic fracturing to be economically feasible, accounted for about 69% of total U.S. dry natural gas production in 2018 and 59% of total U.S. crude oil production, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. So, yes, a fracking ban or something approaching it would put a major dent in U.S. production.
Posted October 24, 2019
As the New York Times launches another attack on congressionally mandated support for U.S. offshore development in the Gulf of Mexico, some facts are in order:
The Deep Water Royalty Relief Act enacted by Congress in 1995 was designed to help spur deep water offshore production as the U.S. faced increasing dependence on imported oil – and the courts found that its intent is clear. Background on the act here and here.
The false claim that there is a royalty relief “loophole,” asserted by the Times and others, omits the fact that between 2000 and 2018 natural gas and oil companies paid more than $122 billion to the government in high bids, royalties and rents. Add to that tens of billions the industry spent to develop those leases, creating jobs and boosting local and regional economies – an integral part of industry’s $1.3 trillion overall support for the U.S. economy.
Today, U.S. Gulf production is setting records, averaging 1.8 million barrels per day (b/d) in 2018 and expected by the government to reach 1.9 million b/d this year and 2 million b/d in 2020. This production generates millions in revenue-sharing dollars for coastal states, as well as the Land and Water Conservation Fund, which supports state conservation and outdoor recreation projects all across the country.
Posted October 18, 2019
There’s nothing more important to our industry than protecting health and safety – of our skilled workers and the communities where they are engaged in supplying Americans with affordable energy for every aspect of modern life and economic well-being.
As energy companies, we know that maintaining the public’s trust and the permission to operate hinge on our ability to work safely and responsibly – caring for the environment, reducing our footprint and continually improving technologies and operations to reduce emissions.
This is the context as we consider a new report on the potential public health effects of natural gas and oil operations by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE), using 2015 data to model impacts.
Posted October 16, 2019
Hydraulic fracturing – the technological breakthrough that launched the U.S. energy revolution – has taken a beating during the Democratic presidential derby.
The Washington Post ran a graphic recently, showing that the entire field would ban fracking altogether or restrict it in some capacity. Here’s the portion of the graphic showing the candidates who would ban fracking completely. The group includes some top-tier candidates, U.S. Sens. Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders and Kamala Harris. Sen. Warren tweeted last month that she would ban fracking everywhere, while Sen. Sanders told the Post that safe fracking is a “pure fiction.”
Not fiction are the negative impacts throughout our society that could result from banning hydraulic fracturing: millions of job losses, trillions lost to the economy, significant increases in household spending on energy.
Posted October 14, 2019
Looking over EPA’s new Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program (GHGRP) data on methane emissions, let’s consider two overarching points:
First, energy from natural gas and oil power and empower America’s modern way of life – better health, greater comforts and conveniences and opportunities for Americans and their families to prosper. No other energy comes close in terms of accessibility, reliability, affordability and useful adaptability across an economy and nation as large and diverse as ours.
Second, as America’s natural gas and oil industry produces the energy we count on every day, it also must continue to capture as much methane as possible from that production, to help the U.S. meet its climate objectives. On both of those leading priorities, our industry is on it.
Posted October 8, 2019
Take a look at a recent interview with API President and CEO Mike Sommers conducted by Albuquerque TV station KOB-4 – a conversation about the dual challenge of providing the energy Americans need every day to work, grow and prosper, while protecting the environment and lowering emissions. There’s no better setting for this discussion than in energy-rich New Mexico.
Indeed, the prolific Permian Basin that covers New Mexico’s southeastern corner before spreading into neighboring Texas is a big reason why the United States continues to lead the world in natural gas and oil production.
Posted October 4, 2019
The latest figures on U.S. crude oil exports show growing U.S. energy leadership, while the continued decline in net oil imports signals strengthened American energy security – with both stemming from the revolution in U.S. production. Charts from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) help illustrate.
First, EIA reports that U.S. crude oil exports rose to average 2.9 million barrels per day (b/d) in the first half of this year – an increase of 966,000 b/d over the same period in 2018. U.S. crude oil exports set a record in June of 3.2 million b/d, and EIA's graph vividly reflects the sea change in the United States’ oil exporting posture.
Posted September 27, 2019
A pair of new, positive developments on the emissions/climate front. First, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) projects that energy-related carbon dioxide emissions will decline 2.5% this year. Second, a new Energy Department report on the life cycle greenhouse gas emissions associated with U.S. liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports confirms the environmental benefits of natural gas vs. coal – significant given expanding markets in Asia and Europe for U.S. LNG.
Both are very important. EIA’s CO2 projection, along with the projected 4.9% increase in natural gas consumed for power generation relative to 2018, underscores the point that increased use of natural gas in fueling power generation lowers CO2 emissions, and that the recent trend of the U.S. recording the lowest CO2 levels in a generation will continue.
Posted September 24, 2019
A key factor in EPA’s recent decision not to directly regulate methane is the simple fact that existing regulation of emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) associated with natural gas and oil production also reduces methane as a co-benefit.
It might surprise some, but on this point current EPA officials are aligned with their agency predecessors under President Obama.