Cornell Professors Say XL Pipeline May Stall U.S. Job Creation | The Cornell Daily Sun

Cornell Professors Say XL Pipeline May Stall U.S. Job Creation | The Cornell Daily Sun.

Jobs vs environment Keystone XL pipeline

CU_KeystoneXL_090711_FIN2.pdf (application/pdf Object).

EMPLOYMENT FACTS: THE KEYSTONE XL PIPELINE

E.P.A. to Delay Release of New Rule on Emissions

Alert Name: environment
June 14, 2011 Compiled: 5:46 AM

SCIENCE / ENVIRONMENT

By JOHN M. BRODER (NYT)

The postponement is a tacit admission that efforts to control pollution will take an economic toll; environmental activists see in it a surrender to industry pressure.

Increasing oil prices could end economic recovery | Marketplace From American Public Media

Increasing oil prices could end economic recovery | Marketplace From American Public Media.  Marketplace APR,  Jan. 5, 2011

TEXT OF INTERVIEW

STEVE CHIOTAKIS:: You may’ve noticed at the gas station, the price keeps going up. But here we are with a global recovery trying to take hold, and the increasing price of oil could send that recovery into a tailspin. That’s the warning this week from the chief economist over at the International Energy Agency.

Fatih Birol says around the world, higher oil prices mean people will be be spending more money on gasoline. And less on everything else. Mr. Birol, good morning sir.

FATIH BIROL: Good morning to you too, thank you.

CHIOTAKIS: We’ve seen higher oil prices before though and the economy seemed — at that time, years ago — seemed to be just steam rolling along. Why are we concerned now?

BIROL: Last time we saw this level of crisis was in the year 2008. And of course the oil crisis was not the primary driver of the financial crisis, but they did play a key role in the run up to the financial crisis by reducing the business and household income.

CHIOTAKIS: This seems sort of like a vicious cycle — economic recovery that’s demanding more oil, and then that sends the prices up — are you saying that maybe this is a catch-22? That this could just keep happening over and over?

BIROL: The age of cheap oil is over, especially if the major consuming nations such as the United States and China do not move from oil-based mobility transportation system to an alternative one.

CHIOTAKIS: Do you have any predictions — say a year from now — where will oil prices be?

BIROL: By law, I cannot make any forecasts, but I hope we do not see the levels that we saw in 2008 because the demand is expected to be very strong. And if the producing countries do not respond by increasing their production this may well mean higher prices than we have now.

CHIOTAKIS: Fatih Birol, chief economist at the International Energy Agency joining us this morning. Thank you sir.

BIROL: Thank you very much.

Oil, Gas Firms Find It Harder To Drill On U.S. Land : NPR

Oil, Gas Firms Find It Harder To Drill On U.S. Land : NPR. Jan 5, 2011

Since the Deepwater Horizon accident in the Gulf of Mexico, the oil industry has complained loudly that the government is dragging its feet in approving new offshore drilling projects. Now the industry says it’s experiencing similar problems in the Rocky Mountains.

There, companies bid for the right to drill for natural gas on federal land. In recent years, environmental groups have found they can slow down the boom-town pace of drilling by challenging those leases, as a way of protecting special places.

It’s a tactic that has upset companies that drill for natural gas.

“We’re tired of spending our money, having the government cash our check and taking our money, and not issuing leases,” says Nerd Gas Co. senior vice president Cary Brus.

“We believe it’s a breach of contract. … They took our money; we want our leases,” says Brus, whose company has joined a lawsuit that claims the Bureau of Land Management is breaking the law.

The Mineral Leasing Act says the BLM has 60 days to award a lease. But a government report released last summer found that the agency was able to meet that deadline less than 10 percent of the time in the Rocky Mountain region.

Part of the reason is that these leases are also subject to other regulations designed to protect the environment. Environmental groups have challenged leases after they are sold, based on concerns for animals like pronghorn antelope, mule dehttp://seamus.npr.org/new_cms/SelectStoryEditorRouting.do?routingAction=LoadFeature&selEditFeature=132658302er and sage grouse that could be pushed out of their native habitat by drilling operations.

“One of the great things about this state is, we have world-class wildlife,” says Joy Bannon, field director for the Wyoming Wildlife Federation. “We also have world-class energy resources, and we need to find a balance of that.”

Environmental groups have worried that special places were being handed over to the oil and gas industry without much scrutiny.

Joy Bannon of the Wyoming Wildlife Federation examines a map for a BLM lease sale her group challenged.
Enlarge Jeff Brady/NPRJoy Bannon of the Wyoming Wildlife Federation examines a map for a BLM lease sale her group challenged.

Joy Bannon of the Wyoming Wildlife Federation examines a map for a BLM lease sale her group challenged.

Jeff Brady/NPRJoy Bannon of the Wyoming Wildlife Federation examines a map for a BLM lease sale her group challenged.

“Under the last half of the Bush administration, there was an avalanche of oil and gas leasing activity,” says Erik Molvar, executive director of the Biodiversity Conservation Alliance.

Molvar says groups like his started challenging leases as a way of slowing that avalanche. In his view, public land in Wyoming should be available for all kinds of uses, including recreation.

“For so many years, the oil and gas industry has had the entire pie of all the public lands all to themselves,” Molvar says.

But that changed when Barack Obama became president nearly two years ago. While George W. Bush’s administration was focused on oil and gas development on public land, Obama favors renewable energy. Those changing priorities made it difficult for BLM workers to keep up with awarding leases.

“Prior to February 2009, we were about two months behind,” says Julie Weaver, chief of fluid minerals adjudication at the BLM office in Cheyenne, Wyo.

“After the change in the administration, we had to step back and do some re-evaluation, and because of that we have a backlog,” she says.

The agency hopes to be caught up by Feb. 1, Weaver says. The BLM is also changing its leasing process, so that concerns from environmental groups are addressed before a lease goes to auction. That will likely lead to fewer leases sold, and less money for the federal treasury.

Meanwhile, the industry has started losing interest in drilling on public land.

“I think you have seen some pullback in activity,” says Kathleen Sgamma, director of government and public policy at Western Energy Alliance. “We’ve gotten very clear signals from this administration that it’s going to be difficult to get leases, it’s going to be difficult to get permits and project approvals.”

Sgamma says that’s a shame, because her industry could be providing thousands of jobs at a time when the country needs them.