New York Times
DENVER — Seeking to head off a costly election-year fight over oil and gas drilling that could threaten vulnerable Colorado Democrats, Gov. John W. Hickenlooper said Monday that he had reached a deal to keep two antifracking measures off November’s ballots.
The fight over fracking in a swing state that prizes its natural beauty and relies on its energy resources for jobs and tax revenues has become a monthslong headache for Democratic leaders, opening fissures within the party and between pro-energy moderates and environmental groups that want to impose tough limits on the oil and gas rigs sprouting up alongside subdivisions. [more]
US Senator Jim Inhofe (R-OK), senior member of the Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee, introduced two bills today to address the listings of the American Burying Beetle (ABB) and the Lesser Prairie Chicken (LPC) under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).
Energy and Capital
News broke Thursday, July 24, that the first two shipments of US ultra-light oil, or condensate, have found buyers.
If you remember, we've been closely following condensate exports, and – as predicted – they have officially become the first step towards removing the ban on crude oil exports for the US. [more]
The New York Times
As a young reporter covering energy for The New York Times, I saw firsthand the distortions and inefficiencies caused by the web of regulations that followed the Arab oil embargo of 1973-74, and the resulting surge in gasoline prices.
So I shared in the frisson of excitement last month when the Commerce Department cleared two Texas companies to export an ultralight, processed form of oil called condensate. It seemed like a step toward relaxing the ban on the export of crude oil, the biggest stricture remaining from the '70s energy crisis.
But then the Obama administration quickly insisted that the Commerce Department, in narrowing the definition of crude oil so that condensate could be exported, was not about to lift the ban more widely. “There has been no change to our policy on crude oil exports,” a White House spokesman said.
That’s unfortunate, because America’s renewed hydrocarbon boom could be even more robust if we eased outdated restrictions on shipping both crude oil and liquefied natural gas overseas. [more]
Article by Sandra Y. Snyder, Richard Alonso & Grant B. MacIntyre
EPA suffered a major loss on May 30 when the DC Circuit refused to uphold EPA’s attempt to narrow the ruling in the Summit aggregation case to only the states in the 6th Cir.
Reversing more than 20 years of EPA practice, the Summit case directed EPA to refrain from using interdependency or the functional interrelatedness of various sources when making a determination regarding whether to aggregate the emissions from those sources for NSR and Title 5 permitting purposes. [more]