Energy Tomorrow Blog
Posted February 10, 2014
How the U.S. Energy Boom is Changing America’s Place in the World
Time: It wasn’t even five years ago that Iran reelected hardliner Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in a disputed presidential election, openly admitted it was building a uranium enrichment facility and brazenly test-fired missiles capable of hitting targets in Israel. Fast-forward to today: A more conciliatory president, Hassan Rouhani, is making historic overtures toward the West and negotiations are showing rare progress toward containing the country’s nuclear program, which has kept the region—and the world—on edge for years.
The difference, according to former Obama administration National Security Advisor Tom Donilon, can be summed up in one word: “fracking.” That’s hydraulic fracturing, the drilling method that’s helped fuel an unprecedented domestic energy boom in the United States.
“There’s a direct line between the U.S.-led sanctions effort to put pressure on Iran” and the flood of oil and gas coming out of the ground at home due to fracking technology, Donilon said Thursday night at an event announcing a new report from the Center for a New American Security, titled “Energy Rush: Shale Production and U.S. National Security.”
Before the North American energy boom—the largest-ever annual increase in domestic oil production took place in 2012—a harsh sanctions regime against Iran looked more like a suicide pact for the oil-import-dependent U.S. Instead, America’s sudden energy abundance dampened the blow of reduced oil exports to the global economy, making truly harsh sanctions on Iran possible.
Read more: http://ti.me/1eKvYKd
Posted January 6, 2014
Fracking 101: Breaking Down the most Important Part of Today’s Oil, Gas Drilling
Greeley Tribune: Fracking, the two- to three-day process of hydraulic fracturing for oil and gas, is perhaps one of the most misunderstood drilling practices, becoming as bad of a word in some circles as a racial slur.
Entire countries have banned the process. Some Colorado towns have placed moratoriums to study it further.
Environmentalists storm capitals over it, demanding increased regulations, and oil and gas company employees and officials scratch their heads — they’ve been using the same process in oil and gas drilling for 60 years without widespread incidents.
“It’s a perplexing issue,” said Collin Richardson, vice president of operations for Mineral Resources Inc., who opened up a company fracking job last fall to a student tour from the University of Northern Colorado. “People go to a light switch and expect energy to be there, but they don’t think about where it comes from. I don’t think most people understand that without hydraulic fracturing, we wouldn’t have natural gas to provide electricity to our homes or gas in our cars.
Read more: http://bit.ly/1gc41Z7
Posted November 7, 2013
U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) chief Adam Sieminski recently gave a presentation at Columbia University on the agency’s new drilling productivity report, and the takeaways are significant: The U.S. is in the midst of a remarkable surge in oil and natural gas production from shale and other tight resources. Higher drilling efficiency and new well productivity are the main drivers of production growth. EIA is confident the United States has ample reserves to sustain production growth for the foreseeable future. Sieminski said U.S. shale reserves, unlocked by hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling, are the reason for skyrocketing oil and natural gas production – since 2007 for natural gas, 2009 for oil.
Posted November 4, 2013
The Outsiders Who Saw Our Economic Future
Wall Street Journal: The experts keep getting it wrong. And the oddballs keep getting it right.
Over the past five years of business history, two events have shocked and transformed the nation. In 2007 and 2008, the housing market crumbled and the financial system collapsed, causing trillions of dollars of losses. Around the same time, a few little-known wildcatters began pumping meaningful amounts of oil and gas from U.S. shale formations. A country that once was running out of energy now is on track to become the world's leading producer.
What's most surprising about both events is how few experts saw them coming—and that a group of unlikely outsiders somehow did. Federal Reserve chairmen Alan Greenspan and Ben Bernanke failed to foresee the financial meltdown. Top banking executives were stunned, and leading investors such as Bill Gross, Jim Chanos and George Soros didn't fully anticipate the downturn.
Read more: http://on.wsj.com/172n4PZ
Posted October 29, 2013
Op-ed: Exports Bring Myriad Benefits
Houston Chronicle (James Clad): After the Arab oil embargo of 1973, America's energy dependence became the most obvious flaw in our superpower status.
Now, thanks largely to the shale revolution, domestic U.S. oil production is pushing imports to a 25-year low, holding down global prices despite Asian demand and Middle East/North Africa supply disruptions.
While the U.S. seems set to displace Saudi Arabia as the largest oil producer by 2020, our natural gas production has lifted our geopolitical gravitas. Now the world's largest natural gas producer, the U.S. is poised to take a growing profile as a gas exporter.Read more: http://bit.ly/18zur0R
Posted October 28, 2013
This summer we posted on Anadarko’s Lucius spar, the 605-foot-long steel tube that would support the company’s newest Gulf of Mexico production platform. Now Anadarko has released three videos of operations to tow the 23,000-ton spar 340 miles southeast of Corpus Christi, Texas, where it was erected in more than 7,000 feet of water and will be fitted with its topsides – the platform the company expects will begin producing oil the second half of next year. This is must-see video.
Posted October 15, 2013
Daniel Yergin: Out of ’73 Embargo ‘the Birth of the Modern Era of Energy’
Wall Street Journal: Forty years ago, on Oct. 17, 1973, the world experienced its first "oil shock" as Arab exporters declared an embargo on shipments to Western countries. The OPEC embargo was prompted by America's military support for Israel, which was repelling a coordinated surprise attack by Arab countries that had begun on Oct. 6, the sacred Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur.
With prices quadrupling in the next few months, the oil crisis set off an upheaval in global politics and the world economy. It also challenged America's position in the world, polarized its politics at home and shook the country's confidence.
Yet the crisis meant even more because it was the birth of the modern era of energy. Although the OPEC embargo seemed to provide proof that the world was running short of oil resources, the move by Arab exporters did the opposite: It provided massive incentive to develop new oil fields outside of the Middle East—what became known as "non-OPEC," led by drilling in the North Sea and Alaska.
Read more: http://on.wsj.com/18iHMi7
Posted August 23, 2013
Posted August 6, 2013
U.S. News & World Report – 'Game Changers' for Job Creation
The National Taxpayer Union’s Pete Sepp notes a recent study indicating the top catalyst for U.S. job creation is oil and natural gas production, particularly from shale development. Sepp outlines the benefits in the study, including adding $690 billion a year to U.S. GDP and creating up to 1.7 million new jobs by 2020.
Posted August 1, 2013
For the second year in a row, U.S. set a record increase for crude oil production in 2011 – rising 15 percent to the highest level since 1985. Natural gas production was also up 10 percent. Shale developing states led the increase.
AIE Ideas Carpe Diem Blog – Shale Revolution: U.S. Was the World’s No. 1 Petroleum Producer in April for the Sixth Straight Month
America’s shale revolution continues to perform – for the sixth month in a row America: a) took the top spot as the No. 1 petroleum producer in the world, and b) produced more petroleum than the combined output of all of the countries in Europe, Central America, and South America.