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Energy Tomorrow Blog

The U.S. Refining Industry – Striving to Maintain Global Leadership

refining capacity  refineries  fuels 

Dean Foreman

Dean Foreman
Posted October 2, 2019

When it comes to motor fuels, the prices we pay at the pump historically reflect crude oil prices – the No. 1 input cost according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) – as well as the relative prices of other products, which collectively motivate refiners to manufacture different fuels. 

We’ve seen through the energy revolution – and especially since 2015 – how lower prices for crude oil and natural gas (a key processing fuel and operating expense for refiners) have advantaged the U.S. petroleum refining industry – and ultimately led to lower fuel prices for consumers at home and abroad.   

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Natural Gas, LNG Exports and Emissions Progress

natural gas  lng exports  climate  co2 emissions 

Mark Green

Mark Green
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.


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U.S. Natural Gas – Meeting the Energy Poverty Challenge

natural gas  liquefied natural gas  energy exports  global energy demand  electricity 

Sam Winstel

Sam Winstel
Posted September 25, 2019

Energy is essential to a modern standard of living, and as the leading energy sources, natural gas and oil are foundational to almost everything we do – lighting our homes, heating our hospitals and powering our workplaces.

The U.S. is the world’s leading natural gas and oil producer, which is critically important given new projections that global energy consumption will increase nearly 50% by 2050. Though reliable access to energy often is taken for granted in this country, people in other parts of the world struggle to obtain the energy needed for sustainable development and to empower basic human progress.

According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), nearly one in eight people around the world lives without electricity, and 2.7 billion people currently are without access to clean cooking facilities. Without power for heating, lighting and advanced technologies, human potential is severely limited. And in the absence of cleaner fuels, people must use coal, kerosene, biomass and other energy sources to prepare food, which contributes to harmful and unnecessary indoor air pollution.

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Capturing VOCs Emissions – and Methane

emission reductions  methane  epa  regulation 

Mark Green

Mark Green
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.


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New Integrity Management Standards Increase Offshore Safety

api standards program  offshore safety 

Debra Phillips

Debra Phillips
Posted September 24, 2019

As the U.S. will soon become a net exporter of total energy, API is continuing to lead the way on safety and environmental protection through the development of key industry standards.

Globally, offshore energy development is poised to grow, with significant new finds spurring the construction of some of the largest floating offshore production facilities ever built.

Just this past month, API released a suite of new Integrity Management (IM) standards outlining how floating production platforms should function to improve operational efficiency, safety, and environmental protection.

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U.S. Energy Empowers American Progress, Not Partisanship

natural gas  offshore access  obama administration 

Sam Winstel

Sam Winstel
Posted September 19, 2019

Borrowing from a line from a presidential campaign gone by, we’ll point out that Democrats were for natural gas and oil before they were against it. See the clips below of President Obama, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

Our homegrown energy revolution is delivering abundant, affordable and reliable energy for American consumers and strengthening an industry that supports 10.3 million well-paying U.S. jobs. As the world’s No. 1 producer of natural gas and oil, the U.S. is increasingly energy self-sufficient, which reinforces our domestic economy, national security and climate leadership.

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U.S. Production is Protecting Domestic Markets, Consumers

monthly-stats-report  oil and natural gas production  us energy security  consumers 

Dean Foreman

Dean Foreman
Posted September 19, 2019

At a time of energy uncertainty in the world, the U.S. natural gas and oil industry is producing at levels that have helped cushion domestic markets and American consumers against global supply disruptions that once would have put severe pressure on our economy here at home.

Each final month of the quarter marks the simultaneous release of API’s Monthly Statistical Report (MSR) and quarterly Industry Outlook, and this quarter has offered some remarkable milestones and insights – at a critical time for the world.

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U.S. Natural Gas – Securing Clean and Renewable Energy

natural gas  renewable energy  emission reductions 

Sam Winstel

Sam Winstel
Posted September 18, 2019

As the United States’ leading source for electricity generation, natural gas is indispensable to our power grid. And, as a cleaner-burning fuel, it is essential to climate progress, accounting for more than 60% of power-related carbon dioxide emission reductions since 2005, which are at their lowest levels in a generation.

Worldwide energy demand grew last year by 2.3% – the fastest this decade – and natural gas emerged as the fuel of choice, accounting for 45% of the rise in consumption, according to the International Energy Agency. These numbers demonstrate the ongoing importance of abundant American natural gas in meeting the growing global push for sustainable, affordable fuels. Given this, the U.S. natural gas and oil industry is laser-focused on balancing the realities of consumer demand with the risks of a changing climate.

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Foster Progress on Water Reuse and Recycle

water  conservation  technology  innovation 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted September 17, 2019

With industry keenly focused on conserving water in production zones across the country, a draft federal water reuse plan unveiled this summer by EPA has the potential to foster innovations and investments that can accelerate sound management practices.

In official comments on the plan, API and a number of other energy associations encouraged the agency to consider ways to “provide maximum flexibility, certainty, and clarity” to existing regulatory structures while removing federal barriers within the federal government’s control that discourage and disincentivize the reuse, recycling, and fit-for-treatment uses of water.

At issue is water produced in association with well development that must be captured and accounted for in ways that protect the environment – including treating it for reuse in energy operations or disposal in federally regulated disposal wells.

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L3RP Offers Bigger, Brighter Future for Native Minnesotans

pipeline construction  enbridge energy  minnesota 

Sam Winstel

Sam Winstel
Posted September 17, 2019

Enbridge’s critically important Line 3 replacement project (L3RP) has gained significant support from Canadian First Nations leaders who urged Minnesotans to work with the pipeline company on the project in a recent op-ed in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune:

“Enbridge addressed our concerns and supported our aspirations by investing in our people and working with us to improve our infrastructure and enhance social programs for our peoples. Over 300 million U.S. dollars were spent with First Nation and First Nation citizen-owned businesses. This economic stimulus benefited more than just the workers, it benefited the families and the Nations we represent.”

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