Posted April 29, 2014
Take a look at the fuels and products delivered every day by America’s sprawling network of liquid petroleum and natural gas pipelines, and you’ll develop a new appreciation for energy infrastructure: gasoline, diesel, jet fuel and other fuels and natural gas and heating oil for our homes. Plus feedstocks to make products ranging from eyeglasses to pharmaceuticals. Pipelines are integral for modern living.
That’s why API’s recently launched “Pipeline 101” website is an important resource – to better understand the need for pipelines, as well as how they work, how safe they are and more.
Posted April 7, 2014
U.S. Energy Boom Lifts Low-Income Workers Too
Wall Street Journal op-ed (subscription required): Mayors, governors and economic-development officials love natural-resource jobs—and today's North American energy revolution has been providing a lot of them. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of new jobs in the oil and gas industry (technically a part of mining) increased by roughly 270,000 between 2003 and 2012. This is an increase of about 92% compared with a 3% increase in all jobs during the same period.
The people of New York and other states that have so far declined to take part in the boom might like to know what they are missing because these jobs pay well. The BLS reports that the U.S. average annual wage (which excludes employer-paid benefits) in the oil and gas industry was about $107,200 during 2012, the latest full year available. That's more than double the average of $49,300 for all workers.
At the other end of the wage spectrum are waiters and waitresses in food services nationwide earning about $16,200 a year, workers in the accommodations industry with average pay of $27,300, and those in the retail trade with average wages of $27,700. But the evidence from the oil boom regions is that energy development lifts wages for low-income workers too.
Posted March 14, 2014
Surge in Oil from U.S., Canada Helps Meet Global Demand
Wall Street Journal: LONDON—The dramatic increase in oil supply from the U.S. and Canada—coupled with a surprise surge in Iraqi output—helped stave off global demand pressures brought on by a cold U.S. winter and geopolitical concerns over rising tensions between Russia and Ukraine.
The International Energy Agency, a watchdog for the world's biggest energy consumers, said North American output helped mitigate a bigger-than-expected draw from global crude inventories, caused by a colder than usual winter in the U.S. Surging Iraqi crude output, which rose to its highest level since 1979, also helped keep global markets supplied, and prices in check.
Posted January 27, 2014
With the State of the Union address scheduled tomorrow night, let’s look at how policy goals in President Obama’s past annual speeches to Congress fit with oil and natural gas development. It turns out the fit is good – very good.
For example, in the 2010 State of the Union the president called jobs his No. 1 priority and said American business would always be the “true engine of job creation.” He also applauded the improving health of the retirement funds supporting the future hopes of so many Americans. Oil and natural gas is playing a key role with both.
Posted December 20, 2013
Momentum is building for revisiting decades-old restrictions on U.S. exports of oil and natural gas. For months we’ve talked about the benefits of exporting liquefied natural gas. Now the U.S. ban on crude oil exports also is being discussed. Earlier this month Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz said much has changed since the crude oil export ban was created:
“Those restrictions on exports were born, as was the Department of Energy and the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, on oil disruptions. There are lots of issues in the energy space that deserve some new analysis and examination in the context of what is now an energy world that is no longer like the 1970s.”
Meanwhile, the Wall Street Journal (subscription required) and the Washington Post have called for an end to the crude oil export ban. With the U.S. Energy Information Administration’s newest outlook projecting continued growth in U.S. production of oil – nearing the 1970 record of 9.6 million barrels per day – and natural gas, discussion of exporting American energy makes economic sense.
Posted November 25, 2013
Interesting developments along the winter energy front from API Chief Economist John Felmy in a recent briefing for reporters.
First, though gasoline prices recently have been pushed higher by increases in world crude oil prices and higher U.S. demand, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) projects that gasoline and diesel prices will hold steady through at least the first half of 2014, Felmy said.
Second, while annual heating costs for natural gas users in 2014 are estimated by EIA to be $665, which is slightly higher than last year, they’re still likely to be 19 percent lower than they were in the winter of 2008-2009. EIA also estimates that annual costs for families who use heating oil in their homes will be 4 percent lower this year than last.
Posted November 19, 2013
The Interior Department says it disbursed more than $14.2 billion in revenue generated by energy production during the federal fiscal year that ended Oct. 30 – a $2 billion or 17 percent increase over the previous year. The increase included $2.77 billion in bonus bids for new oil and natural gas leases in the Gulf of Mexico. Interior Secretary Sally Jewell:
“Domestic energy production infuses funding into communities across the United States that creates American jobs, fosters land and water conservation efforts, improves critical infrastructure, and supports education. The funding reflects significant energy production from public resources in the United States and serves as a critical revenue stream for federal and state governments and tribal communities.”
Interior said revenues were distributed to state, local, federal and tribal accounts for reclamation, conservation, recreation and historic preservation projects. Local governments use these revenues for needs ranging from funding schools to infrastructure improvements, the department said. More than $8 billion was sent to the U.S. Treasury to fund programs for the entire nation.
Certainly, this is good news. Increased production of U.S. oil and natural gas results in job creation and economic stimulus, as well as more revenue for governments in the form of income taxes, rents, royalties and bonus payments. Every day the oil and natural gas industry delivers about $85 million to the U.S. Treasury. Our effective tax rate of 44 percent (2007-2012) leads other industries.
Posted October 30, 2013
Marcellus Natural Gas Pipeline Projects Will Primarily Benefit New York and New Jersey
EIA Today in Energy: Multiple pipeline expansion projects are expected to begin service this winter to increase natural gas takeaway capacity from the Appalachian Basin's Marcellus Shale play, where production has increased significantly over the past two years. These new projects are largely focused on transporting gas to the New York/New Jersey and Mid-Atlantic regions and would have limited benefit for consumers in New England, where price spikes during periods of peak winter demand appear likely to persist.
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 1, 2013
Jobs, U.S. energy security and regulation are leading the discussion at the North American Gas Forum (NAGF) this week in Washington. The NAGF is a gathering of regional natural gas industry members -- primarily focused on issues that affect the distribution and use of natural gas domestically and globally. Highlights from the two-day meeting:
- Because of vast shale reserves, the U.S. has a chance to be more secure in the future through safe, reliable supplies of North American energy.
ICF International's Kevin Petak predicted the Marcellus Shale Play will become a "juggernaut," producing more than 20 million cubic feet of natural gas per day by 2035. The U.S. Energy Information Administration's Howard Gruenspecht said U.S. natural gas production is expected to outpace domestic consumption and that the U.S. could become a net exporter by 2040.