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Energy Tomorrow Blog

Energizing Louisiana

vote4energy  louisiana  energy production  refineries  states2016 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted August 9, 2016

We kicked off our 50 states of energy blog post series on Monday with New Jersey. Over the next several weeks we’ll focus on the impacts of energy in each individual state – underscoring the reality that the United States as an energy superpower, leading the world in oil and natural gas production, is very much a sum of its energy parts. Today: Louisiana.

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Waterways Infrastructure: Supplying America

infrastructure  transportation  refineries  petroleum products 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted April 19, 2016

The United States has about 25,000 miles of navigable waterways and channels – vital transportation infrastructure for the delivery of raw materials and products that American consumers count on every day. Yet, as vital as these waterways are, they don’t always get as much attention as highways, roads and railroads.

With Congress likely to take up legislation that will include funding for waterways in the next month or so, it’s a good time to link that debate with the critical role water-borne commerce plays.


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Cleaner Fuels for Cleaner Air

air quality  fuels  environmental expenditures  investments  gasoline  diesel  technology innovation  refineries 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted November 5, 2015

To a large degree, cleaner air in the United States results from innovations and improvements in transportation fuels over the past four decades. This is important, because the freedom to travel has been ingrained in the American psyche since the days when waves of westward migration began spanning the continent.

Today, Americans are used to free and independent movement, with the average person traveling more than 13,600 miles a year, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation. Meanwhile, Americans’ modern lifestyles depend on freight haulers that deliver commercial goods to the places where they live. The 4 million miles of highways and roads that make up a large portion of the U.S. transportation network serve as the country’s arterial system – and energy makes it go. Refineries supply more than 130 billion gallons of gasoline and 60 billion gallons of diesel a year to power trucks, barges, ships and trains connecting consumers with consumable goods.

The oil and natural gas industry is meeting the challenge of fueling America’s transportation needs while advancing air quality goals that benefit all Americans – by investing in cleaner, safer fuels and next-generation technologies for the future.

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Crude Swap and Economic, Environmental Benefits

analysis  energy exports  crude oil  mexico  economic benefits  refineries 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted August 31, 2015

More about last week’s Commerce Department decision to allow U.S. crude oil swaps with Mexico – basically, a positive step in the direction of lifting America’s 1970s-era ban on exporting domestic crude.

An analysis by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) says the exchange of light U.S. oil for heavier Mexican oil will generate economic and environmental benefits. The economic piece certainly is consistent with a number of studies that say lifting the ban and exporting domestic crude will generate broad benefits for our economy and savings at the pump for U.S. consumers, while spurring domestic production.

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Point by Point on the RFS

analysis  renewable fuel standard  epa  ethanol  blend wall  e85  refineries 

Bob Greco

Bob Greco
Posted June 26, 2015

API Downstream Group Director Bob Greco traveled this week to EPA’s field hearing on the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) in Kansas City, to detail concerns over the flawed program, with its market-distorting mandates for ever-increasing use of ethanol in the national fuel supply. His remarks, as prepared for delivery:

The Ethanol Blend Wall

Our members’ primary RFS concern is the ethanol blend wall.  Serious vehicle and retail infrastructure compatibility issues exist with gasoline containing more than 10 percent ethanol.  We are encouraged that EPA has proposed to address this reality. 

Gasoline demand increases projected in 2007 did not materialize, and Congress granted EPA the authority to balance its aspirational goals with reality. API supports EPA’s use of its explicit RFS waiver authorities in 2014, ‘15, ‘16, and beyond to avoid negative impacts on America’s fuel supply and to prevent harm to American consumers. 

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Hurricane Season = Preparedness Season

analysis  hurricane preparedness  refineries  oil and natural gas industry  infrastructure  offshore operations 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted June 9, 2015

With another hurricane season upon us, it’s timely to briefly review the ways the oil and natural gas industry is prepared for conditions that could impact industry operations, particularly in the Gulf Coast region and Gulf of Mexico – home to more than 45 percent of U.S. refining capacity and about 17 percent of the nation’s oil and 5 percent of its natural gas production.

While the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is predicting below-normal activity in the Atlantic region (which includes the Gulf), industry still takes a number precautions and has response plans in place in the event of a serious storm – wise, considering the potential impacts to facilities, regional and national economies and the environment.

You can read about this in detail in this hurricane fact sheet.

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Two Countries, Two Energy Revolutions

analysis  economic benefits  canadian oil sands  trade  american energy  keystone xl pipeline  refineries 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted June 5, 2015

OK, so EPA says safe hydraulic fracturing isn’t a threat to the nation’s drinking water. That’s great news for America’s energy revolution, which is being driven by advanced fracking and horizontal drilling. Without them there’s no revolution and certainly fewer jobs and less economic opportunity. Thanks, EPA, for following the science and recognizing – as industry has for some time, producing specific best practices for fracking – that the focus should be on continually improving safe operations and advancing technologies. These will help ensure our energy revolution goes forward.

Now, let’s talk about another country’s energy revolution – one that hasn’t gotten a lot of attention in the U.S. beyond the unfortunate, protracted debate over the Keystone XL pipeline. Canada’s own energy revolution is at the heart of the U.S.-Canadian relationship and is so integral to U.S. security. The vitality of Canadian energy is something more Americans should care about, as it bears directly and indirectly on our lives in a number of ways.

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Infrastructure, Energy Progress Hinge on Cutting Red Tape

news  regulations  permit delays  infrastructure  oil and natural gas development  liquefied natural gas  energy exports  refineries  epa  ethanol  shale energy 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted May 27, 2015

Wall Street Journal commentary (Engler and McGarvey): America’s business and labor leaders agree: President Obama and Congress can do more to modernize the permitting process for infrastructure projects—airports, factories, power plants and pipelines—which at the moment is burdensome, slow and inconsistent.

Gaining approval to build a new bridge or factory typically involves review by multiple federal agencies—such as the Environmental Protection Agency, the U.S. Forest Service, the Interior Department, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Bureau of Land Management—with overlapping jurisdictions and no real deadlines. Often, no single federal entity is responsible for managing the process. Even after a project is granted permits, lawsuits can hold things up for years—or, worse, halt a half-completed construction project.

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Market Demand for U.S. Energy

news  energy exports  crude oil  refineries  hydraulic fracturing  energy prices  natural gas development  arctic  safe operations  michigan 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted May 18, 2015

Wall Street Journal: BRUSSELS—The European Union is increasing pressure on Washington to include an energy chapter in a planned trans-Atlantic trade deal that would allow U.S. exports of natural gas and oil and reduce the bloc’s dependency on Russia.

In an interview with The Wall Street Journal, Maros Sefcovic, the EU’s energy chief, said that easing flows of liquefied natural gas and crude oil from the U.S. to the EU is one of the bloc’s goals for the trans-Atlantic trade and investment partnership, or TTIP, that is currently under negotiation. The U.S. has so far resisted an energy chapter in TTIP, but the shale-gas boom in the U.S. and the EU’s trouble with Russia have pushed the issue into focus.

“We believe that the energy chapter in TTIP…could make a quite important contribution to the mutually beneficial trade exchange, but also to the energy security of the EU,” Mr. Sefcovic said.

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ConocoPhillips’ Lance: Crude Exports Would Boost Economy

analysis  conocophillips  crude oil  energy exports  refineries  economic benefits  gasoline prices  job creation  domestic energy production 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted April 27, 2015

ConocoPhillips Chairman and CEO Ryan Lance talks with Energy Tomorrow about key industry challenges ahead and details the case for ending the United States’ 1970s-era ban on the export of domestic crude oil. Lance is a petroleum engineer with 28 years of oil and natural gas industry experience in senior management and technical positions with ConocoPhillips, predecessor Phillips Petroleum and various divisions of ARCO. His past executive assignments with ConocoPhillips have included responsibility for international exploration and production, regional responsibility at various times for Asia, Africa, the Middle East and North America, and responsibility for technology, major projects, downstream strategy, integration and specialty functions. He is a member of the Society of Petroleum Engineers, and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in petroleum engineering from Montana Tech in 1984.

Q: Given the current downturn in oil prices, talk about the key decisions ahead for the industry over the next 10 years.

Lance: We foresee several key decisions ahead for companies in our industry. First they have to determine their strategic direction.  Industry has transitioned from an era of limited resource access to one that, due to the productivity of North American shale and the potential for shale development elsewhere, offers a new abundance of resources. Although many of the best conventional resource areas remain off limits in traditional exporting countries, shale and other unconventional resources offer immense potential in many areas that are accessible. So companies now have an unprecedented range of options – pursuing North American shale,  international shale, deepwater development, LNG, oil sands, international exploration, and so on. Companies must determine where they have or can build competitive advantages and leverage relationships with host nations, potential partners and suppliers, and identify the long-term opportunities best for them.  

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