With lower filibuster threshold, new Obama appointees on D.C. Circuit Court portend stricter emissions limits

The U. S. Senate’s confirmation Tuesday of Patricia Millett to the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, along with two other confirmations to that court expected by year’s end, increase the odds that stricter regulations on power U.S. plant emissions that President Obama has not been able to accomplish through legislation will stand up in court. […]

George P. Mitchell: Founder of Shale Gas — here’s how he and his team did it

The memorial services this week near Houston honoring the generosity and success of energy innovator, real estate visionary and philanthropist George P. Mitchell are inspiring accolades for his role in tapping the huge potential of natural gas from shale rock formations deep underground. He passed away July 26 at the age of 94. Mitchell — […]

Fugitive methane emissions: the achilles’ heal of the natural gas push?

Buoyed by low prices, environmental benefits and thousands of newly created jobs, the push to produce more natural gas in the U.S. is reaching its stride thanks largely to horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing. But do we understand the implications, some of which might negate the environmental gains? The answer to many objective analysts is: […]

Updated draft rules for hydraulic fracturing deserve the chance to work

Complaints by both sides over the Obama administration’s newly updated draft rules regulating the hydraulic fracturing of shale natural gas and oil on public and Indian lands signals the Interior Department has found enough common ground to raise the bar — albeit slightly — on drilling operations. Because the updated draft rules would only apply […]

Center for Sustainable Shale Development – peeling back the packaging

Since its launch about one month ago (see The Energy Fix, March 22), the Center for Sustainable Shale Development has been met with accolades from entities such as The Washington Post to harsh rebukes by the likes of the Sierra Club. It’s not surprising that these and other parties differ on the Center’s potential for […]

Collaborative set to forge workable rules for shale hydraulic fracturing shows promise

Led in part by Chevron, Shell, the Environmental Defense Fund and the Clean Air Task Force, these and seven other organizations are now on record having identified “shared values” in an intriguing effort to better manage the risks of hydraulic fracturing of natural gas and crude oil from shale developments throughout Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia […]

Wind power could be a cost-effective hedge against rising natural gas prices

That’s the conclusion of a new report by researcher Mark Bolinger at the U.S. Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL). He’s done an enviable job of scouring public sources for wind energy supply contracts at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, state utility commissions and long-term power-purchase agreements in various wholesale markets. This question is front-of-mind for […]

Bloomberg to natural gas industry: stop resisting sensible regulations, join with renewables

New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg used the 2013 ARPA-E Energy Innovation Summit near Washington, DC to prod the oil and gas industry to stop resisting efforts to forge “sensible” regulations. “We need sound regulation and we need it soon,” he said. While he’s been on the bandwagon for enabling responsible hydraulic fracturing for natural […]

Boone Pickens: focus energy innovation more on cheap, plentiful natural gas made in the U.S.

You may have heard it before from Texas oilman T. Boone Pickens about the potential for natural gas produced in the U.S. But featuring him at this year’s ARPA-E Energy Innovation Summit Tuesday near Washington, DC put a new spin on the benefits of America becoming more energy self-sufficient on the backs of the lower-emitting […]

Collaboration on Illinois legislation could achieve standards for regulating hydraulic fracturing

Illinois is on track to go where no push for hydraulic fracturing has gone before in the U.S.: a consensus on how to regulate the controversial practice of injecting chemicals and large amounts of water deep underground to flush out large quantities of natural gas and crude oil. As states such as New York and […]