Energy Tomorrow Blog
Posted August 1, 2014
Wall Street Journal (Merrill Matthews Opinion): The growing efforts by state and local governments to stop hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking," to extract natural gas could end up in the Supreme Court. These efforts may unconstitutionally limit property owners' ability to profit from their mineral rights.
More than 170 New York towns and cities have used zoning laws to restrict or prohibit fracking, and in June New York's Supreme Court turned back a challenge to this practice. Pennsylvania allows local municipalities to restrict fracking. Colorado and California are struggling with the issue.
Even in pro-energy Texas, the relatively small town of Denton, about 30 miles north of Dallas, has a fracking moratorium while the city considers whether to impose a permanent ban. At a recent contentious Denton city council meeting in which 500 people attended, the council moved to let voters decide in November.
Nevertheless, landowners and drillers are threatening to sue Denton if a ban is implemented. They may have a case.
Posted April 21, 2014
Probably nowhere is the economic impact of shale energy development more dramatic than in the contrast between two neighboring states – Pennsylvania and New York. The former allows hydraulic fracturing in the energy-rich Marcellus shale belt that runs through much of the state, the latter doesn’t – even though the Marcellus continues into the Empire State and could provide a big jobs boost on its Southern Tier.
Indeed, while New York is not a top producing state, the oil and natural gas industry still is driving strong job creation and economic growth. In a PwC study, New York ranked 7th in the country in overall impact from oil and natural gas development.
Posted November 26, 2013
Marcellus Goliath Transforms Region
Bloomberg: Beneath the rolling pastures and woodland of western Pennsylvania, a corner of Appalachia dotted with Victorian main streets and white church steeples, a radical shift is under way.
In Punxsutawney, home to a groundhog named Phil who prognosticates the weather each February, a $2.8 million hotel is under construction. A few miles away in DuBois, metal fabricator Staar Distributing LLC is expanding to neighboring Brookville. All this development is coming to an economically depressed region that lies atop the Marcellus shale, a rock formation that produces more natural gas than Saudi Arabia.
Output from shale deposits including the Marcellus has surged 10-fold since 2005 to account for a third of the country’s gas production, government data show. The boom has eliminated a regional price premium, redirected pipeline flows and left the nation poised to export the fuel overseas after cutting imports by 44 percent since 2007. It’s also helped make the U.S. 86 percent energy independent, the most since 1986.
“The Marcellus is a Goliath,” David Schlosser, senior vice president for engineering and strategic planning at EQT (EQT) Corp., one of the four largest gas producers in the Marcellus, said in an Oct. 31 interview at the company’s headquarters in Pittsburgh. “In some ways, we’re just at the tip of the iceberg.”
Read more: http://bloom.bg/1icRd9o
Posted October 10, 2013
U.S. Poised to Pass Russia as World’s Largest Petroleum Producer – and the Bakken is Helping Make That Happen
Dickinson Press: The U.S. is poised to pass Russia as the world’s top oil and gas producer, according to a new report, and North Dakota’s congressional delegation said they believe it is largely due to the state’s Bakken energy play.
Citing U.S. Energy Information Administration and International Energy Agency numbers, the Wall Street Journal reported last week that the U.S. is poised to overtake its former Cold War rival in the production of oil and natural gas sometime later this year.
Sen. Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D., on Wednesday joined Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D., and Rep. Kevin Cramer, R-N.D., in citing North Dakota’s booming Bakken shale play — which also spills over into Montana and the Canadian province of Saskatchewan — as a key contributing factor.
Read more: http://bit.ly/GIcFSK
Posted August 28, 2013
The Infrastructure Supporting America’s Energy Renaissance Begins in Texas
Fuel Fix Blog: While many states throughout the nation struggle to make ends meet, surrounded by economic uncertainty, Texas is booming. Robust investment in the energy industry – from deep-water drilling to above ground production, and everything in between – has allowed the state to succeed despite an inconsistent U.S. economy.
None of this is news to those living in the Lone Star State – and in fact Texas has received a steady stream of national attention for its economic success – however it is worth noting that a key reason for such outstanding growth has been the investment in and development of our nation’s extensive energy infrastructure.
In April 2013 alone, Texas created over 33,000 jobs, which is more than any other state in the country, and nearly one-fifth of all the jobs created in the United States.
Read more: http://bit.ly/1dQjBcL
Posted August 16, 2013
USA Today – Our View: Ethanol Quotas Pump Money from Your Pocket
USA Today’s editorial says that the increasing ethanol mandate is “bad public policy” that the “Obama administration has some flexibility to lower mandates, but a better approach would be to repeal the law entirely.”
City Journal – The View from Marcellus
Hydraulic fracturing “brings breathtaking economic and environmental benefits – at least to places that welcome it,” writes James Panero. He also notes that in 2000, shale produced only 2 percent of our domestic oil and natural gas supply. According to government studies, 50 percent now comes from shale and unconventional sources.
Posted August 1, 2013
Posted July 30, 2013
In this video, Dan Roupp, a third generation Pennsylvania timber and lumber farmer, notes the safety of oil and natural gas development through hydraulic fracturing in Lycoming County:
Posted June 24, 2013
AP reports on the debate surrounding the Renewable Fuel Standard and E15 gasoline after a recent ruling by the Supreme Court. "The ever increasing ethanol mandate has become unsustainable, causing a looming crisis for gasoline consumers," API's Bob Greco said. "We're at the point where refiners are being pressured to put unsafe levels of ethanol in gasoline, which could damage vehicles, harm consumers and wreak havoc on our economy."
Houston Chronicle – Energy Surge Spreads Its Wealth Around City
Houston is arguably the center of American energy. With the surge in domestic energy, the city’s business sector – and revenues – has grown over the last few years. The Chronicle highlights the “vibrant metropolitan area.”
Posted June 14, 2013
The energy stimulus from shale development last year in Pennsylvania is big – big as in approaching a number with nine zeroes:
- $202.4 million collected in state impact fees from energy producers.
- $731 million in rents and royalties paid to land and mineral rights owners.
That’s nearly $1 billion from the oil and natural gas industry in terms of tax revenues for government to allocate (more below) and payments to individuals.
Pennsylvania officials announced this week $202,472,000 was collected in producer-paid impact fees in 2012. About $204 million was collected for 2011, bringing the two-year total to more than $406.6 million, state officials said. Public Utility Commission Chairman Robert F. Powelson:
“The PUC is entrusted by the Governor and the legislature with the collection and distribution of the Impact Fee monies. Again, we have met all of the deadlines in the legislation, which contains a complex and specific formula for getting this money into the hands of local communities.”