The People of America's Oil and Natural Gas Indusry

Energy Today - April 5, 2011

Rayola Dougher

Rayola Dougher
Posted April 5, 2011

Anchorage Daily News: Our View: Energy Policy: In recent days President Obama has gotten Alaskans' attention with his encouragement of oil production in Brazil and his call for a 33 percent cut in U.S. oil imports in a decade. Brazil? Well, OK, but if the goal is to increase U.S. domestic production, the president should first look west and north from D.C. to Alaska prospects. Right off the top we can think of two prospects that could stand federal encouragement. The first is to grant a permit for Conoco Phillips to build a bridge and road across the Colville River into the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska... The second is to grant Shell a clean air permit for exploratory drilling just offshore in the Beaufort Sea in 2012. That permit has been held up by litigation. Canadian Business: North Dakota Oil Patch Marks 60 Years, With 1.85 Billion Barrels of Crude Oil Pumped to Date: North Dakota's oil patch marked its 60th anniversary on Monday amid record production, drilling activity and government estimates that show the industry is likely still in its infancy. Since April 4, 1951, when Amerada Corp.'s well struck oil on Clarence Iverson's wheat farm near Tioga in the northwest part of the state, some 1.85 billion barrels have been produced in North Dakota, state Industrial Commission records show. Officials estimate that at least twice that amount remains untapped in the Bakken shale and the Three Forks formation below it. "As technology increases, we know oil is still down there -- a lot of oil," said Ed Murphy, the state geologist and director of the Geological Survey. "Who knows what the next 60 years will bring?"

Silver City-Sun News: Their View: Energy Policy: Actions Speak Louder than Words: Banning deep-water drilling in the Gulf is probably the most well known energy-killer. Immediately after the BP spill, Obama issued a moratorium that prevented potential oil production. The ban, originally thrown out by a U.S. district judge, expired Nov. 30, 2010, but virtually no permits have been issued since, creating a de facto ban. On Feb. 17, the same judge ordered the Interior Department to act quickly on offshore drilling applications, calling the inaction "increasingly inexcusable." Not only have gas prices gone up as a result, jobs have been lost and businesses have gone bankrupt.

Billings Gazette: U.S. Should Invest In Plan to Develop Its Oil and Gas: We are in complete agreement with the White House that it doesn't make sense to talk about national energy independence without a strong domestic oil and gas industry. The Montana Petroleum Association members are ready to invest private dollars in exploring those leases and developing new oil and gas supplies. But the Obama administration cannot stutter step down a path to energy independence. In the last few months, U.S. Department of Interior Secretary Ken Salazer has repeatedly talked about taking millions of acres of federal land in Montana out of public use, and his agency has slowed the permitting process to a standstill...We are all disturbed by continued unrest in the Middle East and the human toll of those conflicts. If Obama really believes, as he said, "our best opportunities to enhance our energy security can be found in our own backyard," then he should fully invest in the domestic opportunity -- and back his rhetoric with action.

Additional Resources:

TIME: Eye on Energy

RedState: Obama's Energy Ideas: Running on Empty

Fuel Fix: Facts vs. Reality for Obama's "Energy Blueprint"

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Rayola Dougher is senior economist at The American Petroleum Institute (API), where she analyzes information, manages projects and develops briefing materials on energy markets and oil industry policy issues. She is the author or co-author of economic research studies covering a diverse range of topics including crude oil and petroleum product markets, gasoline taxes, energy conservation and competition in retail markets. In addition to testifying before federal and state legislators, she has participated in numerous newspaper, radio and television interviews on a wide range of issues affecting the oil industry, including crude oil and gasoline prices, industry taxes and earnings, exploration and production, and refining and marketing topics.

Prior to joining API, Rayola worked at the Institute for Energy Analysis where her research focused on carbon dioxide related issues and international energy demand and supply forecasts. Rayola holds a Masters degree in Economic Development and East Asian studies from the American University and a degree in History and Political Science from the State University of New York at Brockport.