Marita Noon

Oil’s Down, Gasoline Isn’t. What’s Up?

August 25, 2015
By
Gas Prices graphic

A little more than a year ago, oil prices were above $100 a barrel. The national average for gasoline was in the $3.50 range. In late spring, oil was $60ish and the national average for gas was around $2.70. The price of a barrel of oil has plunged to $40 and below—yet, prices at the pump are just slightly less than they were when oil was almost double what it is today. Oil and gasoline prices usually travel up or down in sync. But a few weeks ago the trend lines crossed and oil continued the sharp decline while gasoline…

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EPA that contaminated Animas River now after the water in your backyard

August 18, 2015
By
EPA Animas spill

Unless a federal judge issues a preliminary injunction, the definition of the “Waters of the U.S.” will change on August 28—giving the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) the authority to regulate the water in your backyard (even the water that might be in your backyard due to a heavy rain). Even, according to West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey: “any area where agencies believe water may flow once every 100 years.” Thirty-one states, in four districts, have filed motions with the federal courts to block the EPA and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (ACOE) from beginning to enforce the new “Waters of…

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Obama’s clean power plan: Solar wins, taxpayers lose

August 11, 2015
By
Solar power

The solar industry is jubilant over President Obama’s Clean Power Plan, released in its final form on Monday, August 3. The same day, however, some other news reminded the public of what happens when government policy mandates and incentivizes a favored energy source: Taxpayer dollars are gobbled up and investors lose out. “The fundamental objective of the Clean Power Plan,” according to Solar Industry Magazine, “is the phasing out of coal-fired power plants in favor of low- or zero-emission sources.” It does this through three “building blocks,” one of which seeks to “increase electricity generation from non-emitting renewable sources, such…

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Obama: Iranian oil, Good; American and Canadian Oil, bad.

July 28, 2015
By
Obama oil policy

President Obama’s confusing approach to energy encourages our enemies who shout “death to America” as it penalizes our closest allies and even our own job creators. Iran’s participation in the nuclear negotiations that have slogged on for months finally netted a deal that allows Iran to export its oil—the only reason they came to the table (burnishing Obama’s legacy surely does not interest them). International sanctions have, since 2011, cut Iran’s oil exports in half and severely damaged its economy. Iran, it is estimated, currently has more than 50 million barrels of oil in storage on 28 tankers at sea—part…

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Mexico’s energy reform is rolling, albeit with training wheels

July 21, 2015
By
Oil rigs

Understanding the connection between energy and economic growth, Mexico’s President Enrique Peña Nieto set out to reform his country’s energy policy and invite outside intelligence and investment to boost slumping oil output. In late 2013, he succeeded in getting the constitution amended to allow private and foreign companies to explore and produce oil and gas in Mexico—for the first time in nearly eight decades. The amendments put an end to the government monopoly. Foreign companies can now compete with, or partner with, Pemex—the national oil company. Nieto hopes his reforms will bring in $50 billion in investment by 2018. The…

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