Posted August 28, 2014
Despite the hyper-partisanship currently flourishing in Washington, there is a potential tie that binds: American energy.
Thanks to advanced technologies, entrepreneurial risk-taking and abundant oil and natural gas reserves, U.S. energy is on the rise: We’re the world’s No. 1 producer of natural gas and likely to be No. 1 in crude oil production next year, according to the International Energy Agency. Our energy revolution is creating jobs, boosting the economy and increasing America’s energy security and influence in the world. It’s also a bridge to bipartisanship.
API Executive Vice President Louis Finkel touched on these themes in a recent op-ed for the Reno Gazette-Journaland in a presentation before the Nevada state convention of the AFL-CIO.
Posted August 25, 2014
Worth reading: this presentation on the facts about offshore seismic surveying from the U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) in its August “Science Notes” newsletter. It’s prefaced by William Y. Brown, chief environmental officer for BOEM, who focuses on the public discussion that has followed the agency’s July announcement that it would allow safe seismic testing off portions of the Atlantic coast:
I wanted to take some time to clear up a few misperceptions about the bureau's decision and what it means. As a scientist who has spent a good part of my career working in non-governmental environmental organizations and in industry, I understand and appreciate advocacy. At the same time, I believe that everyone benefits by getting the facts right.
Posted August 13, 2014
America’s energy revolution is reality. Thanks to vast reserves of oil and natural gas in shale and other tight-rock formations, developed with advanced hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling, the United States is the world’s leading producer of natural gas and by next year could be No. 1 in oil production.
Yet, the dramatic shift in the U.S. energy picture – from one of scarcity and limits just a few years ago to abundance and opportunity – could be just a memory without policies and actions to sustain it. Key to keeping the domestic energy revolution going is offshore development. The ability to explore for and develop new offshore oil and natural gas reserves is vital to maintaining America’s status as an energy superpower – a point grasped by a strong majority of U.S. voters in recent polling.
That’s the main thrust of official comments just submitted by API and 10 other associations to officials who are assembling the next federal five-year offshore leasing plan that will establish where the federal government plans to lease offshore blocks for exploration and development from 2017 to 2022.
Posted July 9, 2014
Hydraulic fracturing is a proven, safe technique that has been used since 1949 in over one million wells right here in the U.S. As a result, America is now the number one producer of natural gas in the world, and by 2015, it is expected that we will take the top spot in crude oil production. Of course, with this success, come both benefits and challenges.
Posted July 3, 2014
Happy Fourth of July, America!
Celebrating Independence Day takes many forms – cookouts, fireworks, community parades, family gatherings and more. It’s also celebrating the uniqueness of America, founded on the notion that all are deserving of “Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness …”
This being an energy blog, let’s connect energy and the elements enshrined in the Declaration. Many things combine to produce and protect our liberty, our freedom. Secure energy is one of them, and America’s energy revolution, built on surging production of domestic oil and natural gas, is making energy security a reality.
Posted July 3, 2014
It looks like a pretty solid national jobs report for June, with the 288,000 positions that were added exceeding the hiring rate over the year’s first five months and unemployment dipping to 6.1 percent. That’s a good story. There’s an even better one deeper in the Labor Department data: The oil and natural gas industry and its supporting activities are setting the pace in job creation.
Consider: Comparing numbers in this report with those from a year ago, the oil and natural gas extraction and supporting sectors outperformed the private sector as a whole in terms of job growth and a number of other relevant measurements, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Posted June 23, 2014
So, how about Team USA’s performance in soccer’s World Cup!
The United States men’s national team is/are on the verge of something special down in Brazil – thanks to world-class skills, great coaching and superb fitness – cheered on by thousands of American fans.
Now, imagine for a minute what this World Cup would be like without fossil fuel energy. Think about all of those U.S. boosters, as well as fans from other countries, trying to travel to South America without the energy from fossil fuels. It wouldn't be pretty.
Posted June 20, 2014
Houston Chronicle: Oil, natural gas and coal have boosted living conditions around the globe, but policies to replace those fossil fuels "with inferior energy sources" could undermine those improvements, a former Texas environmental regulator argues.
In a 36-page paper - "Fossil Fuels: The Moral Case" - Kathleen Hartnett White, former chairman of the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, insists that access to oil, natural gas and coal are inextricably linked with prosperity and well-being.
Policies targeting heat-trapping greenhouse gases - including the Environmental Protection Agency's new plan for throttling carbon dioxide emissions from existing power plants - overlook "the inestimable human benefits of fossil fuels," White says.
"Energy-dense, abundant, versatile, reliable, portable, and affordable, fossil fuels provide over 80 percent of the world's energy because they are superior to the current alternatives," White writes.
Posted June 18, 2014
Here’s a link to a well-done video produced by Fortune magazine, showing a little bit about what it’s like to work on an oil and natural gas production platform more than 100 miles out in the Gulf of Mexico. The video’s producers visited Chevron’s Tahiti platform and interviewed a couple of the facility’s workers to gain insight into the two-weeks-on, two-weeks-off nature of life on the platform.
Posted June 17, 2014
A thought-provoking op-ed piece by the Manhattan Institute’s Robert Bryce in the Wall Street Journal last week (subscription required), in which he “does the math” on one group’s goal of reducing fossil fuel use 20-fold over the next few decades. It’s a must read if you fancy getting from Point A to Point B in a reasonable amount of time, warm houses in the winter, cool ones in the summer and other aspects of modern living supported by these fuel sources.
Global hydrocarbon consumption is now about 218 million barrels of oil equivalent energy a day, according to the BP Statistical Review of World Energy, which includes 83 million barrels of oil as well as about 75 million barrels of oil equivalent from coal and about 60 million barrels of oil equivalent from natural gas. Reducing that by a factor of 20 would cut global hydrocarbon use to the energy equivalent of 11 million barrels of oil a day, roughly the amount of energy now consumed by India, where 400 million people lack access to electricity.
The math: The average person on Earth used about 1.3 gallons of oil-equivalent energy a day from hydrocarbons in 2012, Bryce writes, so a 20-fold decrease would mean allotting everyone 8 fluid ounces of oil-equivalent energy from hydrocarbons a day.