The People of America's Oil and Natural Gas Indusry

Energy Today - June 7, 2011

Rayola Dougher

Rayola Dougher
Posted June 7, 2011

The Globe and Mail: U.S. Oil Industry Warns China Will Fill Keystone Pipeline Vacuum: In a submission to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, the Washington-based American Petroleum Institute argues that the $7-billion (U.S.) pipeline would be a major boost to job creation, and warned that the U.S. cannot take for granted its access to the vast oil sands resource in Canada. "Other nations will aggressively develop this key strategic resource for their future energy needs if we fail to act," API chief executive officer Jack Gerard said in his letter. Although he did not name China, Mr. Gerrard was clearly referring to warnings that, in the absence of the Keystone XL pipeline, Canada will build alternative export routes to the West Coast to ship oil sands crude to the booming Chinese market. "The U.S. should approve this pipeline to utilize this resource to enhance our energy and national security, preserve our global competitiveness, and maintain our role as a world economic leader." USA Today: Our View: Fracking with Care Holds Key to Energy Future: Little more than a decade ago, the United States was running so low on natural gas that companies were making plans to cover the shortfall with imports of liquefied natural gas. Today, though, the marine terminals built to dock huge LNG ships in Texas, Louisiana and Maryland are being converted to ship gas out, not just bring it in. This remarkable reversal of fortune is the result of a dramatic boom in a drilling technique called hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking," which uses high-pressure water mixed with chemicals and sand to crack open shale formations. This technique has brought a surprising amount of new gas production from states as disparate as Texas, North Dakota and Pennsylvania -- enough combined with conventional supplies to last perhaps 100 years at current consumption rates.That's game-changing, wildly underdiscussed news.

International Falls Daily Journal: Largest Oil, Natural Gas Companies are also Some of Largest Employers: The reality is that the largest oil and natural gas companies are some of the largest employers in America, providing living wage salaries and benefits to hard working families. Our industry contributes an average of $87 million per day to the federal government. With a 41% effective tax rate (higher than most businesses) oil companies already pay more than their fare share. Also, politicians and others like to focus on oil company profits. While the oil and natural gas industries reported profits last quarter may seem high, the reality is that if you look at their net income vs. sales, they generally fall below the average earnings of all manufacturing in the U.S. at around 7 cents on the dollar.

Additional Resources:

Independent Online: BHP Brings New Gulf Well Online

Albany Times-Union: Explore Sources of Energy in U.S.

SayAnythingBlog: Shale Gas Drilling (Fracking) a Rare Bright Spot for Jobs

Platts: Keystone's Quick Spill-Response Supports XL Pipeline Expansion

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.