Energy Tomorrow Blog
Posted July 30, 2013
The Energy Policy Research Foundation, Inc. (EPRINC) released a study last week highlighting the consequences of exceeding the blendwall:
“The current regulatory regime, if not reformed in some substantial manner, will likely spike gasoline prices in 2014, as federal mandates take the U.S. gasoline pool significantly above 10 percent ethanol by volume.”
The risk mentioned here isn’t coming as a surprise. We’ve described the potential consequences of the RFS and highlighted the real costs of the program here, here, and here. EPRINC’s study brings all of these problems into focus, underscoring the immediate consequences that could face consumers in 2014.
Posted July 29, 2013
Boston Herald – End Ethanol Madness
In an editorial, the Boston Herald notes recent hearings by the House Energy and Commerce Committee on the Renewable Fuel Standard. The paper argues that the “mandate should be ended.”
Dallas Business Journal – Dallas Firm Uses Solar to Power West Texas Oil Rigs
A sign of a true “all-of-the-above” energy policy, one Dallas energy firm is using a solar generator to power oil and natural gas rigs in West Texas. The system has batteries which can store up to 24 hours worth of power.
Posted July 26, 2013
Richmond Times-Dispatch – White House Would Tax Away Virginia’s Energy Future
Policy that enables the oil and natural gas industry to produce more would have a far greater impact on state and federal coffers than would any partisan policy that hinders the industry with higher taxes, notes Jack Refuse in a guest opinion piece.
Posted July 26, 2013
Earlier we took a look at claims by the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) that ethanol production was “a particularly important catalyst” and “major driver” of declines in finished motor gasoline imports (Spoiler Alert: No). Today, continuing the Sisyphean task of correcting false narratives put forth by the RFA, let’s look at the notion that ethanol is leading the way in providing energy security. RFA’s statement in a House hearing this week:
In fact, cumulative new ethanol production since 2005 has accounted for 62% of new domestically-produced liquid fuels, while cumulative new U.S. crude oil production has accounted for 38%.
Posted July 25, 2013
Des Moines Register – Iowa Will Have to Import Corn
With increased ethanol obligations and growing livestock operations needing more feed, Iowa – the nation’s “king of corn production” – will have to import kernels to keep up with demand, an analyst tells the newspaper.
Master Resource - Frac Bounty: All Should Participate
Blogger Paul Driessen highlights the benefits of U.S. shale development – game-changing technologies that have led to job creation and economic boosts across the country. Driessen got a first-hand look at hydraulic fracturing drilling in northern Pennsylvania noting the “signs of pride and prosperity were evident all over Williamsport.” Driessen: We need to frack for a better, cleaner, happier world!”
Posted July 25, 2013
Over two days this week the Energy and Power Subcommittee of the House Energy and Commerce Committee heard concerns from scientists, poultry producers, automakers, drivers, restaurant owners, tool makers, store owners, environmentalists and the oil and natural gas industry about problems with E15 and/or the current Renewable Fuel Standard. Leading the charge the other way was the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) with a simple message: our product is so great; the government should continue to force people to buy it.
Posted July 24, 2013
National Journal – Ethanol Mandates Starting to Worry Some Senate Democrats
NJ’s Amy Harder reports that ethanol requirements in the Renewable Fuel Standard are generating pressure on some Democratic senators. “Mid-Atlantic lawmakers, in particular, are hearing from the poultry industry, which is concerned about rising feedstock prices, and from oil refineries, which are facing increased costs for blending ethanol with gasoline,” writes Harder.
PennLive.com – Hydraulic Fracturing is Well Regulated
In a letter to the editor, the executive director of the Associated Petroleum Industries of Pennsylvania counters claims by anti-hydraulic fracturing groups and individuals. “In reality, hydraulic fracturing is rigorously regulated by state agencies and federal laws overseeing oil and natural gas development,” writes Stephanie Wissman. “In addition, strict standards are developed by the oil and natural gas industry in collaboration with specialists who best understand the unique geology and hydrology of their communities.”
Posted July 9, 2013
New York Post – Fracking Phobia Fails Yet Again
In a guest post, National Review Online’s Rich Lowry takes issue with a new film’s claims that the EPA is a “tool of the oil and natural gas industry.” It never occurs to anti-fracking crusaders that perhaps the evidence doesn’t back up the anti-fracking hysteria, he writes.
The news magazine highlights the debate over the Renewable Fuel Standard, which will be the subject of an upcoming House hearing. “There will be a push in our committee by some, Republicans and Democrats, to do away with the RFS, saying that it's just completely unnecessary today," said Rep. Lee Terry.
Posted June 28, 2013
There is a classic xkcd cartoon where a one of the characters says they can’t come to bed because “Someone is wrong on the internet.” Though the options for who exactly that someone was are almost unlimited, statistically there is a good chance the character was referring to Bob Dinneen. Witness this tweet:
Posted June 27, 2013
Important testimony at a House hearing yesterday from U.S. Energy Information Administration chief Adam Sieminski on flaws in the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), including its mandates for increasing ethanol use.
Sieminski, who heads the government agency charged with counting and quantifying energy of all sources, testified before the House Energy and Commerce’s subcommittee on energy and power, basically saying the current RFS is broken:
· “The RFS program is not projected to come close to achievement of the legislated target that calls for 36 billion gallons of renewable motor fuels use by 2022.
· Substantially increased use of biofuels can only occur if they can be used in forms other than the low-percentage blends of ethanol and biodiesel that account for nearly all of their current use.
· The implicit premise that cellulosic and other advanced biofuels would be available in significant quantities at reasonable costs within 5 to 10 years following adoption of the 2007 RFS targets has not been borne out.”