The People of America's Oil and Natural Gas Indusry

Energy Today - May 17, 2011

Rayola Dougher

Rayola Dougher
Posted May 17, 2011

The Calgary Herald: Trillions Predicted in Oil Sands Spending: The recession that clouded the future of oilsands development two years ago has lifted and clear skies beckon trillions of dollars of investment, according to a report released Monday. Over the next 25 years, through 2035, $2.077 trillion will be invested in building and maintaining the oilsands, according to the Canadian Energy Research Institute. That includes $253 billion in initial capital for construction and $1.8 trillion for operation, maintenance and sustaining capital. "The projects ... that were delayed are now back being developed again, there are more projects, some projects have moved forward in time," said CERI president and chief executive Peter Howard in an interview. "The net result is there is the potential for more money to be invested than what we had suggested in 2009. "And with more money comes more jobs, more gross domestic product, etc." Under its "realistic scenario," oilsands production capacity will ramp up from about 1.7 million barrels per day now to 2.1 million bpd by 2015, 4.8 million by 2030 and 4.9 million by 2035, the study shows. Forbes: Okla. Land Office Projects Record School Funding: A state agency that oversees hundreds of thousands of acres of state-owned lands announced Monday it expects to make record-level appropriations to public schools in Oklahoma this year, largely as a result of increased oil and gas exploration in the state. The Commissioners of the Land Office reports it has distributed more than $112 million to primary schools, colleges and universities from July 1 to April 30. The amount distributed during the same 10-month period last year was about $73 million. "We're extremely pleased to be able to direct a record setting amount of money from the CLO towards education, especially during these tough times," Republican Gov. Mary Fallin said in a statement. "These dollars come without any mandates and will provide our schools and universities with another flexible source of funding to help deal with the budget cuts they are currently facing." The new secretary of the Land Office, Harry Birdwell, said the funding boost is due to an increase in oil and gas exploration as well as the performance of the equities market over the last year.

The Washington Examiner: Va. Not a Winner in Obama Oil-Drilling Plan: President Obama ordered the Interior Department to expand oil and gas drilling in Alaska's National Petroleum Reserve, but his plan to increase domestic production at a time of soaring fuel prices doesn't include a long-sought lease sale 50 miles off the coast of Virginia, analysts say. Rather, Obama merely directed the Interior Department to speed up the evaluation of resources along the Atlantic coast. It's a far cry from just over a year ago, when the president cleared the way for offshore oil and natural gas exploration only to institute a drilling moratorium following a massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Exploration off of Virginia's coast was later blocked until at least 2017. "I don't see any commitment here for [Virginia's lease sale]," Erik Milito of the American Petroleum Institute said of Obama's plan. "I don't see anything here that will create the kind of opportunities in the near future that this country needs."

Additional Resources:

The Foundry: One Tiny Cheer for Obama on Drilling

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.