U.S. Petroleum Exports Surpass Imports, Setting New Monthly Record in Over Four Decades: EIA

U.S. exports of crude oil and petroleum products exceeded imports by 89,000 barrels a day in September, a turning point from only a decade ago, when imports surpassed exports by 10 million barrels a day, according to a Dec. 31 report from the U.S. Energy Information Administration. The agency attributed the trend to changes in…

U.S. Set New Records for Oil and Natural Gas Production in 2018: EIA

Year-over-year increases in U.S. proved reserves resulted in record-high levels of crude oil and lease condensate, up 12 percent, and natural gas up 9 percent in 2018, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration’s U.S. Crude Oil and Natural Gas Proved Reserves, Year-End 2018 report. Strong oil and natural gas prices in 2018 drove the increase in…

U.S. Natural Gas Flaring Hit Record High in 2018 Amid Glut in Oil Production: EIA

Venting and flaring of U.S. natural gas reached its highest average annual level of 1.28 billion cubic feet per day in 2018, with North Dakota and Texas accounting for 82 percent of the amount, according to a Dec. 6 report from the U.S. Energy Information Administration. As crude oil production has outpaced the buildout of…

U.S. Energy-Related Emissions Rise After Four Years Amid Higher Natural Gas, Petroleum Use: EIA

U.S. energy sector carbon emissions rose by 2.7 percent last year compared to 2017, reaching 5.27 billion metric tons, according to a Nov. 26 report from the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Emissions in 2018 rose for the first time since 2014, driven by higher natural consumption to meet demand during extreme weather conditions and transportation-related…

Trump Administration Considers Expanding Oil, Gas Development in Arctic Reserve

The U.S. Interior Department’s Bureau of Land Management on Nov. 21 issued a draft environmental review for a new integrated activity plan for the 23-million acre National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska. The proposal includes an alternative that would open as much as 18.3 million acres, or about 80 percent of the reserve, to oil and gas development,…

California Halts Drilling Permits to Intensify Scrutiny of Oil, Gas Operations

The California Department of Conservation halted approval of new permits for wells that use high-pressure steam to extract oil from underground formations and instituted a scientific review of pending applications to conduct hydraulic fracturing and other well stimulation practices, according to a Nov. 19 news release. The new measures stem from legislation enacted last month…

ExxonMobil Granted Lease of U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve Facility

The U.S. Energy Department awarded a 20-year contract to ExxonMobil Pipeline Company to operate the Strategic Petroleum Reserve’s two-million-barrel capacity St. James marine terminal and Bayou Choctaw 36-Inch Pipeline, according to an Oct. 28 news release. The new lease, effective Jan. 1, 2020, ends Shell Pipeline Company LP’s 22-year control of the facilities. The St.…

Biofuel Industry Says U.S. EPA Failed to Ensure Integrity of Renewable Fuel Program

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on Oct. 15 proposed to calculate the small refinery exemptions for 2020 under the Renewable Fuel Standard, or RFS, program based on a three-year average of the relief recommended by the Energy Department. The biofuel industry criticized the proposal for failing to meet the Oct. 4 agreement with the Trump…

Fossil Fuels Continue to Dominate U.S. Energy Production and Consumption Despite Growth in Renewables: EIA

Fossil fuels continue to account for the largest share of energy consumption in the United States. Last year, about 79 percent of domestic energy production was from fossil fuels, and 80 percent of domestic energy consumption originated from fossil fuels, according to the Energy Information Administration. The share of U.S. total energy production from fossil…

Enbridge’s $2.9 Billion Oil Pipeline Wins Minnesota Court Challenge

The Minnesota Supreme Court on Sept. 17 declined to hear challenges by tribal and conservation groups to the environmental review of Enbridge Inc.’s proposal for replacing its aging Line 3 crude oil pipeline across northern Minnesota. In a June ruling, the Minnesota Court of Appeals found that the project’s environmental review failed to consider the…

New Hampshire Enacts Ban on Offshore Drilling to Block Trump’s Expansion Plan

Republican Governor Christopher Sununu signed legislation on Sept. 11 prohibiting offshore oil and natural gas exploration in state waters. New Hampshire joins California, New Jersey, Maine, and Oregon that have enacted similar measures in response to the Trump administration’s plan to open vast amounts of coastal waters to drilling activities. The bill bans the lease…

U.S. EPA Proposes to Repeal Obama-Era Methane Limits on Oil, Gas Industry

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on Aug. 29 proposed to reverse regulations put into place in 2016 to limit the emissions of methane, a potent global warming pollutant, during oil and natural gas drilling operations. The move follows a sweeping executive order that President Trump issued in 2017 to undo the prior administration’s climate regulations…