Energy Tomorrow Blog
Posted June 10, 2014
New York Times: DENVER — An impassioned national debate over the oil-production technique known as fracking is edging toward the ballot box in Colorado, opening an election-year rift between moderate, energy-friendly Democrats and environmentalists who want to rein in drilling or give local communities the power to outlaw it altogether.
If they make the ballot in November, an array of proposals will be among the first in the nation to ask a state’s voters to sharply limit energy development. Some measures would keep drilling as far as a half-mile from Colorado homes. Others would give individual communities the right to ban fracking.
The ballot measures reflect the anxieties that have accompanied a drilling boom across the West. As drilling sites are built closer to playgrounds and suburban homes in communities along Colorado’s northern plains, residents and environmental groups have called for more regulation and have pushed for moratoriums on drilling.
But in a bellwether state like Colorado, where views on drilling vary as much as the geography, the measures could ignite an all-out battle involving oil companies, business groups and conservationists that pulls in millions in outside money, sets off a rush of campaign ads and spawns lawsuits for years to come. That is why Gov. John W. Hickenlooper and other Democratic leaders are working feverishly on a compromise that would give communities more control of energy development in their backyards while keeping the fracking issue off the ballot.
Posted May 16, 2014
Add the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) to the list of American working men and women who want President Obama to approve the Keystone XL pipeline for construction. The Washington Examiner reports that IBEW President Edwin Hill sent letters to a number of Democratic senators, urging the pipeline’s construction. The Examiner quotes from Hill’s letter:
“At a time when job creation should be a top priority, the KXL pipeline project will put Americans back to work and have ripple benefits throughout the economy. … From pipe manufactured in Arkansas, to pump motors assembled in Ohio and transformers built in Pennsylvania, workers from all over the United States will benefit from the project. … Although America is slowly recovering from the worst recession since the Great Depression, unemployment rates remain high, especially in the construction industry.”
Americans in the construction trades look at the Keystone XL as more than a job – it’s a lifeline for people who’ve seen their work recover slowly from the recent recession.
Posted April 29, 2014
Take a look at the fuels and products delivered every day by America’s sprawling network of liquid petroleum and natural gas pipelines, and you’ll develop a new appreciation for energy infrastructure: gasoline, diesel, jet fuel and other fuels and natural gas and heating oil for our homes. Plus feedstocks to make products ranging from eyeglasses to pharmaceuticals. Pipelines are integral for modern living.
That’s why API’s recently launched “Pipeline 101” website is an important resource – to better understand the need for pipelines, as well as how they work, how safe they are and more.
Posted April 15, 2014
Last month a new study said more than $640 billion in energy infrastructure investments will be needed in the U.S. over the next two decades. Needed are pipelines, pumps and other infrastructure to keep pace with expected increases in domestic oil and natural gas production, the ICF International report said – much of it coming from energy reserves found in shale and other tight-rock formations through advanced hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling. ICF:
“Sufficient infrastructure goes hand in hand with well-functioning markets. Insufficient infrastructure can constrain market growth and strand supplies, potentially leading to increased price volatility and reduced economic activity.”
Posted February 11, 2014
U.S. Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz, addressing a propane shortage currently affecting millions of consumers in the Northeast and Midwest at the National Association of State Energy Officials annual policy outlook conference last week:
“There’s a lot of day-to-day issues to be concerned about but we also want to keep this in a broader context. What we’re seeing played out is just one example of where our energy infrastructure isn’t quite ready for the task we have today.”
At the same conference, Roy Willis, president and CEO of the Propane Education Research Council, called propane the “canary in the coalmine” for the nation’s energy infrastructure needs. That canary certainly is singing out.
Posted October 31, 2013
Wishing everyone a safe and happy Halloween! And, thanks to America’s enormous wealth of oil, natural gas and other energy sources, plus investment and ingenuity supplied by the oil and natural gas industry, it is a high-energy Halloween. No tricks, just treats.