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Just Let the Market Reduce Methane Emissions, For Crying Out Loud!

Institute for
Energy Research

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Why are the Feds, not to mention Pennsylvania, so busy trying to reduce methane emissions with over-the-top regulations when markets are already doing it?

This past month, the Interior Department proposed delaying the implementation of the Methane and Waste Prevention Rule. The purpose of the rule is to limit the amount of methane that oil and natural gas producers may release or burn off as part of their production on public lands. According to some estimates, the rule would cost $279 million a year and block more than 800,000 jobs by 2020.

The decision to review this costly regulation has been met with the usual animosity in Washington: politicians have drafted a letter condemning the decision and anti-fossil fuel groups are challenging it in the courts. But why are so many people interested in saving a regulation that will have such a negligible impact on reducing carbon emissions?

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Robbery! DRBC Thieves Propose Grand Theft of Land

natural gas boats - Tom Shepstone ReportsTom Shepstone
Shepstone Management Company, Inc.

 

There’s a robbery in progress. The DRBC is engaged in a grand scheme to steal land out from underneath Wayne County and its citizenry with Tom Wolf’s help.

The Delaware River basin is a drinking water source, So, is the Susquehanna River basin. The Delaware River basin includes streams officially classified as “High Quality” and “Exceptional Value.” So does the Susquehanna River basin. Gas drilling and hydraulic fracturing have been permitted by the Susquehanna River Basin Commission (SRBC) for a decade in that basin. The SRBC says its “water quality monitoring network has not detected discernible impacts on the quality of the Basin’s water resources as a result of natural gas development.“ The Delaware River Basin Commission (DRBC) is run by the same governing majority of members as the SRBC, but after sitting on the issue for the same decade, now wants us to believe this same practice is too dangerous for the Delaware River basin.

Those are the facts—the only facts needed to understand the nature of this crime—the robbery of Wayne County’s land and its future. The DRBC, which is nothing more than the SRBC with different hats, is engaged in this grand theft for one reason and one reason only; it thinks it can get away with it.

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DRBC: Hey, We Don’t Do No Stinkin’ Economic Development

natural gas boats - Tom Shepstone ReportsTom Shepstone
Shepstone Management Company, Inc.

 

A comment by the DRBC in regard to folks concerned about the economic impact of its proposed fracking ban reveals stunning ignorance as well as arrogance.

Energy In Depth has a nice summary of the hearing held in Waymart earlier this week to gather local opinion on the potential impact of what appears to be a proposed fracking ban by the Delaware river Basin Commission (DRBC). Reading it, I learned something I didn’t know, even though I was there and testified. I had not seen the Channel 16 coverage of the events and didn’t realize the excuse the DRBC gave for not attending to hear local opinion. When I did read it, I was absolutely stunned at the ignorance and the arrogance of the statement.

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Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative Is Actually Raising Energy Prices

SolarInstitute for
Energy Research

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States participating in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, are seeing their already high energy bills, go higher; far different from its intention.

The Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), a cap-and-trade program between nine northeastern and mid-Atlantic states, was recently extended. The states (Maryland, Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island and Vermont) have agreed to cut carbon dioxide emissions from power plants by 30 percent from 2020 levels by 2030.

According to the initiative, which was originally adopted on January 1, 2009, the revenue that the states obtain from the cap-and-trade program is used to improve energy efficiency, modernize the electric grid and purchase more wind and solar power. However, a recent study funded by the Cato Institute finds that 1) there were no added emissions reductions or associated health benefits from the program; 2) the RGGI revenue spending had minimal impact; and 3) the RGGI allowance costs increased already high regional electricity prices.

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Let’s Call the Impact Fee by Its Real Name: Severance Tax

budget shortfallKeith Naughton
Principal, Silent Majority Strategies, LLC

 

Representative John Maher wants to set the record straight on the Pennsylvania impact fee; “it always was and now is a severance tax.”

With a simple amendment Rep. John Maher, Chairman of the House Environmental Resources and Energy Committee (Pennsylvania), injected a much-needed dose of honesty into state government. Maher’s amendment changed the name of the “Impact Fee” levied on fracked natural gas to “Severance Tax,” which is what that tax should have been called from Day One.

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The Baptists and the Bootleggers: Why Both Call for More Regulation

FractivistsK.J. Rodgers
Crownsville, Maryland  

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Different groups have different reasons to call for more regulation hurdles for the gas industry, but they share the same self-serving goals. 

This year is full of controversy and divisional lines. We are all being held to pick a side and stand fast for this or that and it is very tiring. When you take a step back, you often see very different groups scheming together for their own gain.

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Midnight Methane Rules Penny Wise and Pound Foolish

LNG - Robert Bradly, JRRobert Bradley, Jr.
Founder and CEO of the Institute for Energy Research.

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The IER’s Robert Bradley examines Federal methane rules; yet another example of foolish counterproductive governmental intrusion beyond all rhyme or reason.

Last month, the U.S. Senate narrowly voted against repealing a punitive, last-minute Obama era regulation. The Interior Department’s so-called Methane and Waste Prevention Rule, while advertised as economically prudent, would eliminate consumer-driven jobs, curtail energy production, and otherwise harm the nation’s economy.

The “midnight regulation,” part of Obama’s now-defunct Climate Action Plan, would require gas and oil companies drilling on federal lands to make extreme reductions in methane emissions. Think of it as the final volley in Obama’s war on fossil fuels.

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Decarbonization War Against Natural Gas Futile

SolarInstitute for
Energy Research

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Decarbonization has no place in America’s energy plan. It relies on technology not developed yet, to reduce carbon dioxide, which natural gas is already doing at record rates.

 “With a clean electricity system comes opportunities to reduce fossil fuel usage in these sectors: for example, electric vehicles displace petroleum use and electric heat pumps avoid the use of natural gas and oil for space and water heating in buildings.”

–The White House, United States Mid-Century Strategy for Deep Decarbonization, 2016

The Obama Administration opened many fronts in its war against fossil fuels. The best known was the Clean Power Plan, stayed by the US Supreme Court and now being dismantled by the US Environmental Protection Agency.

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Running Scared Has Its Price: DRBC Funding Slashed by PA

cost of renewables - Tom ShepstoneTom Shepstone
Natural Gas NOW

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Pennsylvania has drastically reduced its contribution to the DRBC, an overdue action that properly rewards the agency for nearly a decade of fracking delay.

SEE UPDATE BELOW

I bring wonderful news. Governor Tom Wolf, on July 11, allowed HB 219, the Pennsylvania budget for 2017, to become law. It cuts DRBC funding from the Commonwealth, already well below previous levels, by half to $217,000. That’s $217,000 more than it ought to get but, nonetheless, a giant step in the right direction. This is the price of the DRBC running scared of fractivists for almost a decade; the cost of incompetence, intransigence and obsequiousness toward fractivist special interests and the wealthy families who fund them.

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DRBC Invested in Oil and Gas? Talk About Fracking Hypocrisy!

cost of renewables - Tom ShepstoneTom Shepstone
Natural Gas NOW

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The stark hypocrisy of the DRBC, which supposes it has the authority to prevent fracking in the basin, while its cash is invested in oil and gas is amazing.

A review of the most recent audit of the Delaware River Basin Commission (DRBC) reveals the disingenuous nature of the agency’s seven-year moratorium on fracking. It pretends, on one hand, that it just can’t make up its mind on allowing the practice anywhere near the Delaware, while investing its cash in the New Jersey Cash Management Fund, where a review indicates oil and gas company stocks are among the favorite equities it purchases.

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