Hydraulic fracturing and energy policy promise to be an interesting area to watch in 2015 as many competing political forces push to control the agenda. The new Republican Congress was sworn in last week, and has promptly sought changes in energy policy such as approval of the Keystone XL pipeline and expediting U.S. natural gas exports. On the other hand, the Obama Administration must increase its rulemaking pace to ensure that the President’s top regulatory priorities are finalized (and potentially defended against legal challenges) by the end of his term. Continue Reading
Fracking Insider Readers: We are pleased to bring you Volume 38 of our State Regulatory Roundup, including updates in Florida, Ohio, and Texas. As we explained in earlier volumes, we designed the Roundup to provide quick overviews on state regulatory activity. If you have any questions on any of these summaries, please do not hesitate to ask. Continue Reading
On December 17, Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s (D) office announced that it was banning hydraulic fracturing in New York because of health concerns, following the issuance of a long-awaited public health review of hydraulic fracturing by the state’s Department of Health (see our previous coverage here). The decision of whether to allow hydraulic fracturing had become a divisive public policy issue in the state. Use of hydraulic fracturing as a stimulation technique has surged in states like Pennsylvania and Texas, which have seen none of the dire consequences promised by environmental extremists. Alarmed by the increase in its successful use, and threatened by states’ successful regulation of the procedure, environmental activists tried to hold the line against hydraulic fracturing in New York. Continue Reading
A study conducted by researchers at the University of Colorado Boulder has found that surfactant chemicals extracted from samples of hydraulic fracturing fluids are no more toxic than common household products. The researchers’ November 12th statement noted that the chemicals identified in the fracking fluids are also found in consumer products, including toothpastes, laxatives, detergents, and ice creams. Continue Reading
The Department of Energy has issued the two final authorizations (here and here) for Freeport LNG Expansion, L.P., and FLNG Liquefaction, LLC (Freeport), to export domestic liquefied natural gas (LNG) to countries with which the U.S. does not have a free trade agreement (FTA). The agency determined that, with record domestic production at 75.05 Bcf/d, the facility’s projected export rate of 1.4 Bcf/d would not increase domestic energy costs and was therefore consistent with the public interest. Continue Reading
In the final days before the November election, the Republican (then minority) staff of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee released a report outlining the domestic economic benefits of hydraulic fracturing, entitled Setting the Record Straight: Hydraulic Fracturing and America’s Energy Revolution. The report espouses the benefits of hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling, and asserts that, without the private sector’s significant investment in oil and natural gas development, the economy would still be in recession. Continue Reading
The EPA’s inspector general, Arthur Elkins, Jr., has rejected Sen. Jim Inhofe’s (R-OK) appeal for the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) to drop its review of the agency and the states’ ability to manage potential threats to water resources from hydraulic fracturing. In his October 16th letter responding to Sen. Inhofe, Mr. Elkins noted that, while inspectors general (IG) report their findings to Congress and their agency heads, they do not take direction from either in deciding what to review. He added that the Inspector General Act does not require IGs to explain why they should be allowed to continue their work, and that, in his opinion, interference by Congress or the agency is contrary to the statute. Continue Reading
The team at Fracking Insider is honored to work alongside a number of distinguished veterans, including our own fearless leader, John Wittenborn (USAF Ret.), and we are proud of the veterans in our families as well (Thanks Pop!). In honor of Veterans Day, the veterans in our lives, and all the men and women who served, Fracking Insider humbly compiled the following resources for helping veterans find jobs in the oil and gas industry. Giving a veteran a job is not a bad way to say thanks.
Also, don’t forget to check the job boards for those companies in the oil & gas industry that made the 2015 list of the top 100 Military Friendly Employers®:
- Baker Hughes (ranked #3!)
- Fugro (USA)
- Devon Energy
- Patterson-UTI Drilling Company, LLC
- Berkshire Hathaway Energy
- BP America, Inc.
- Chesapeake Energy Corporation
- Sunoco Logistics
Fracking Insider Readers: We are pleased to bring you Volume 37 of our State Regulatory Roundup, including updates in Colorado, Pennsylvania, and Texas. As we explained in earlier volumes, we designed the Roundup to provide quick overviews on state regulatory activity. If you have any questions on any of these summaries, please do not hesitate to ask. Continue Reading
The final mid-term election of a presidency typically represents the last election of consequence for the President, and the point where Presidents demonstrate an increased willingness to take actions that are politically unpopular or controversial.
While Presidential pardons are perhaps the most notable of these politically unpopular lame-duck actions, the President’s monument designation authority is certainly the most closely watched among land-use industries like the oil & gas industry because it can be used to restrict large areas of public land from all future development. Continue Reading