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Energy Tomorrow Blog

Ethanol and Honey Bees 2.0

renewable fuel standard  rfs34  white house  ethanol  blend wall 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted December 28, 2015

The White House has honey bees – an estimated 70,000 of them that call a hive near the South Lawn home. Yet, nationwide bees are struggling. Researchers have warned of declining numbers of bees and other “pollinators” – to the point that last year the White House set up a task force to develop a bee strategy to help reverse the trend. From the White House blog:

Increasing the quantity and quality of habitat for pollinators is a major part of this effort—with actions ranging from the construction of pollinator gardens at Federal buildings to the restoration of millions of acres of Federally managed lands and similar actions on private lands. To support these habitat-focused efforts, USDA and the Department of Interior are today issuing a set of Pollinator-Friendly Best Management Practices for Federal Lands, providing  practical guidance for planners and managers with land stewardship responsibilities.

We acknowledged the bee situation in a post nearly a year ago, noting that the large-scale conversion of grasslands to grow crops for a number of uses was crowding out bees, butterflies and others – including increasing acreage being devoted to ethanol production. Now a new, comprehensive study by University of Vermont researchers underscores the point – that U.S. wild bees are disappearing in many of the country’s most important farmlands and that increased demand for corn to use in biofuel production is a significant part of the problem.

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Time to Get Policy Right on Oil Exports

crude oil exports  congress  economic growth  oil production  white house 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted December 15, 2015

That Congress soon may act to end the United States’ 40-year-old ban on domestic crude oil exports is signaled in the number of reports and posts on exports-related themes.

The Wall Street Journal has a report that talk of lifting the export ban is narrowing the difference between U.S. and global crude prices. The Council on Foreign Relations’ Michael Levi has this post discussing the impact of an exports deal on markets, the recent climate deal and geopolitics. National Journal reports on the legislative horse-trading some think could be part of lifting the exports ban. And there’s more.

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White House Politics Versus The American People

crude oil exports  economic growth  jobs  white house  ghg mitigation technologies  oil and natural gas development 

Kyle Isakower

Kyle Isakower
Posted October 8, 2015

These things are true:

  • The U.S. gets the majority of its energy from oil and natural gas, and is projected to continue to do so for decades.
  • Since 2005 U.S. production of natural gas is up 43 percent.
  • Since 2008 U.S. production of crude oil is up 88 percent.
  • U.S. air quality continues to improve, with concentrations of carbon monoxide down 60 percent, ozone down 18 percent, lead 87 percent, nitrogen dioxide 43 percent, particulate matter 35 percent and sulfur dioxide 62 percent since 2000.
  • The federal U.S. budget deficit for FY2015 was $435 billion.
  • The U.S. trade deficit rose in August as exports hit a three-year low.
  • Since 2008 our working age population has grown by over 16 million, while employment is up 8.5 million, leaving the U.S. at odds with trends in other countries.
  • U.S. poverty and wages are stagnant, and it is getting harder for people to move beyond a minimum-wage job.
  • Americans' trust in the federal government's ability to handle domestic problems has reached a new low.

These things are true, and thus, when presented with bipartisan legislation to reduce consumer fuel costs and the trade deficit while increasing U.S. investment, domestic crude oil production, GDP and government revenues and creating good paying jobs – all via U.S. crude oil exports – the White House obviously had no choice but to … threaten to veto it.

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A Policy of Unemployment?

domestic energy  energy policy  obama administration  over regulation  taxes  white house jobs summit 

Jane Van Ryan

Jane Van Ryan
Posted January 13, 2010

Considering unemployment is at its highest level in almost 30 years, "you'd think the Obama administration would do everything possible to save existing jobs and create new ones," says op-ed author Jim Constantopoulos, a professor of Geology at Eastern New Mexico University in his recent Sun-News op-ed

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