Marita: Loves the strike down of one portion of Obama’s overall little legacy

Link to: Striking down Obama’s climate legacy has its day in court

 

Greetings!

 

This week, I knew early on what my topic would be. For the past couple years, I’ve followed the Obama administration’s Clean Power Plan (CPP)—including offering public comment at one of the EPA’S “listening sessions” in Atlanta. Back in February, I wrote about the Supreme Court’s historic stay. On Tuesday,  September 27, more history was made when the full DC Appeals Court heard oral arguments regarding the CPP—from both defenders and detractors. There, history was made again: the full court engaged in the arguments for the full day.

 

Despite the historic nature of the case, few people are following it—or even knew about the CPP’s day in the Appeals Court.

 

For my weekly radio show: America’s Voice for Energy, I interviewed two of the lawyers involved in the case who were in the room for the full oral arguments. Their insights, along with news reports, resulted in this week’s column: Striking down Obama’s climate legacy has its day in court (attached and pasted-in-below).

 

Marita Noon 2015 Turquiose

Marita Noon

Executive Director, Energy Makes America Great, Inc.

PO Box 52103, Albuquerque, NM, 87181

505.239.8998

 

For immediate release: October 3, 2016

Commentary by Marita Noon

Executive Director, Energy Makes America Great Inc.

Contact: 505.239.8998, marita@responsiblenergy.org

Words: 1128

 

Striking down Obama’s climate legacy has its day in court

President Obama’s flagship policy on climate change had its day in court on Tuesday, September 27. The international community is closely watching; most Americans, however, are unaware of the historic case known as the Clean Power Plan (CPP)—which according to David Rivkin, one of the attorneys arguing against the plan: “is not just to reduce emissions, but to create a new electrical system.”

 

For those who haven’t followed the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) rule, here’s a brief history that brings us to up to date:

  • EPA published the final CPP rule in the Federal Register on October 2015.
  • More than two dozen states and a variety of industry groups and businesses immediately filed challenges against it—with a final bipartisan coalition of more than 150 entities including 27 states, 24 trade associations, 37 electric coops, 3 labor unions, and about a half dozen nonprofits.
  • On January 21, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia denied a request for a stay that would have prevented implementation of the rule until the court challenges were resolved.
  • On February 9, the Supreme Court of the U.S. (SCOTUS), in an unprecedented action, before the case was heard by the lower court, overruled, and issued a stay that delays enforcement of CPP.
  • The Court of Appeals was scheduled to hear oral arguments before a three-judge panel on June 2, but pushed them to September 27 to be heard by the full court—something the court almost never does (though for issues involving “a question of exceptional importance” procedural rules allow for the case to proceed directly to a hearing before the full appeals court).

 

The court, which is already fully briefed on a case before hearing the oral arguments, typically allows a maximum 60-90 minutes to hear both sides and occasionally, with an extremely complex case, will allow two hours. The oral argument phase allows the judges to interact with lawyers from both sides and with each other. However, for the CPP, the court scheduled a morning session focusing on the EPA’s authority to promulgate the rule and an afternoon session on the constitutional claims against the rule—which ended up totaling nearly 7 hours. Jeff Holmstead, a partner with Bracewell Law, representing one of the lead challengers, told me this was the only time the full court has sat all day to hear a case.

 

One of the issues addressed was whether or not the EPA could “exercise major transformative power without a clear statement from Congress on the issue”—with the 2014 Utility Air Regulatory Group (UARG) v. EPA determining it could not. Republican appointee Judge Brett Kavanaugh noted that the UARG scenario “sounds exactly like this one.”

 

Judge Thomas Griffith, a Bush appointee, questioned: “Why isn’t this debate going on in the floor of the Senate?” In a post-oral argument press conference, Senator James Inhofe (R-OK) pointed out that the debate has been held on the Senate floor in the form of cap-and-trade legislation—which has failed repeatedly over a 15-year period. Therefore, he said, the Obama administration has tried to do through regulation what the Senate wouldn’t do through legislation.

 

“Harvard law professor Laurence Tribe, one of Obama’s mentors,” writes the Dallas Morning News: “made a star appearance to argue that the Clean Power Plan is unconstitutional.”

 

Judge Karen LeCraft Henderson, a Bush appointee, concluded: “You have given us all we need and more, perhaps, to work on it.”

 

The day in court featured many of the nation’s best oral advocates and both sides feel good about how the case was presented.

 

For the challengers (who call CPP “an unlawful power grab”), West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey, who along with Texas AG Ken Paxton, co-lead the case, reported: “We said (then) that we were looking forward to having our day in court on the merits. Today was that day. I think that the collective coalition was able to put very strong legal arguments forward, as to why this regulation is unlawful, and why it should be set aside.”

 

But the case has its proponents, too, and they, also, left feeling optimistic. In a blog post for the Environmental Defense Fund, Martha Roberts wrote about what she observed in the courtroom: “The judges today were prepared and engaged. They asked sharply probing questions of all sides. But the big news is that a majority of judges appeared receptive to arguments in support of the Clean Power Plan.” She concluded that she’s confident “that climate protection can win the day.”

 

The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) summarized the session saying that stakeholders on all sides were left “parsing questions and reactions, and searching for signs of which way the judges are leaning.” U.S. News reported: “The judges repeatedly interrupted the lawyers for both sides to ask pointed questions about the legal underpinnings of their positions.”

 

The decision, which is not expected for several months, may come down to the ideological make-up of the court: 6 of the judges were appointed by Democrat presidents and 4 by Republicans. Though, according to WSJ, Obama appointee Judge Patricia Millet “expressed concern that the administration was in effect requiring power plants to subsidize companies competing with them for electricity demand.” She offered hope to the challengers when she said: “That seems to be quite different from traditional regulation.” Additionally, in his opinion published in the Washington Post, Constitutional law professor Jonathan Adler, stated: “Some of the early reports indicate that several Democratic nominees posed tough questions to the attorney defending the EPA.”

 

Now, the judges will deliberate and discuss. Whatever decision they come to, experts agree that the losing side will appeal and that the case will end up in front of the Supreme Court—most likely in the 2017/2018 session with a decision possible as late as June 2018. There, the ultimate result really rests in the presidential election, as the current SCOTUS make up will be changed with the addition of the ninth Justice, who will be appointed by the November 8 winner—and that Justice will reflect the new president’s ideology.

 

Hillary Clinton has promised to continue Obama’s climate change policies while Donald Trump has announced he’ll rescind the CPP and cancel the Paris Climate Agreement.

 

The CPP is about more than the higher electricity costs and decreased grid reliability, which results from heavy reliance on wind and solar energy as CPP requires, and, as the South Australian experiment proves, doesn’t work. It has far-reaching impacts. WSJ states: “Even a partial rebuke of the Clean Power Plan could make it impossible for the U.S. to hit the goals Mr. Obama pledged in the Paris climate deal.” With Obama’s climate legacy at stake, the international community is paying close attention.

 

And Americans should be. Our energy stability hangs in the balance.

 

 

 

The author of Energy Freedom, Marita Noon serves as the executive director for Energy Makes America Great Inc., and the companion educational organization, the Citizens’ Alliance for Responsible Energy (CARE). She hosts a weekly radio program: America’s Voice for Energy—which expands on the content of her weekly column. Follow her @EnergyRabbit.

 

 

Marita: Oil and gas exports—one policy change, many benefits

Greetings!

As is often the case, this week I had to decide between three different story ideas for my column. Al Gore and his suggestion that climate change skeptics be punished certainly had appeal—but many others were addressing that, giving it plenty of coverage. The Obama administration’s federal-lands fracking announcement was also considered—but it made headlines and garnered the ire of Speaker Boehner and therefore didn’t need me to draw attention to the issue. I settled on the under-reported topic that allowed me to tie several stories together as I am fond of doing: Oil and gas exports—one policy change, many benefits (attached and pasted-in-below). I used Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritizker’s WSJ op-ed as my launching point and tied it throughout Oil and gas exports—one policy change, many benefits.

I am pleased with how Oil and gas exports—one policy change, many benefits penciled out (or keyed out). I hope you are too! Please post, pass on, and/or personally enjoy!
Thanks for your interest!

Marita Noon
Executive Director, Energy Makes America Great, inc.
PO Box 52103, Albuquerque, NM 8718

Marita: Oil and gas exports—one policy change, many benefits
“Businesses that sell to foreign markets put more people to work in high-quality jobs, offering more Americans the chance to earn a decent wage,” claimed the Obama administration’s Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker in a March 18 Wall Street Journal (WSJ) opinion piece.

She makes a strong case for U.S. exports: “jobs in export-intensive industries pay up to 18% more than jobs not related to exports.” Her premise is: “The U.S. economy ended 2014 on the uptick, and exports added to the momentum.” Noticeably absent is any mention of the potential for “high-quality jobs” and economic “uptick” that would come from the export of America’s abundant oil-and-natural gas resources—something an executive order could expedite; something her office could champion.

Pritzker states: “From large enterprises and multinational corporations to small startups and local manufacturers, an increasing number of businesses are realizing that their customer base is no longer around the corner, but around the world. They understand that 95% of the world’s customers live outside the U.S., and to succeed in the 21st century, they must find a way to reach consumers in ever-expanding markets.” Penny, this is especially true for American energy!

Due to the modern technologies of horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing—developed and refined within our borders—the U.S. is producing more oil and natural gas than in decades. So much that we are nearly out of places to store it. We know how to produce it safely and cheaply. But, unlike the airplanes Pritkzer’s co-author Jim McNerney, CEO of Boeing Co., builds, the oil-and-gas industry is prevented from sending its abundance to “foreign markets”—including our allies in Europe who are dependent on energy from a source that uses it as a weapon against them.

The same day WSJ published Pritzker’s piece, it featured a news story announcing: “some of the world’s biggest oil companies are starting to give up” on “hydraulic fracturing wildcatting in Europe, Russia and China.” This, despite the fact: “Eastern European officials who were eager to wean their nations off of Russian gas welcomed the explorers.” It explains: “Wells in Poland and China can cost up to $25 million each, while American wells on average cost about $5 million”—resulting in overseas costs to produce a barrel of shale oil that are higher than what it can be sold for with the current world-wide low prices.

In trade negotiations, the U.S., according to the New York Times (NYT), “typically argues that countries with excess supplies should export them.” We have excess supplies of both crude oil and natural gas that has driven down prices—resulting in “trouble for an industry that has done much to keep the national economy afloat in recent years.” We “should export them”—but we aren’t.

“Why can’t we export crude oil and natural gas?” you might ask—especially when the U.S. can export refined petroleum products such as gasoline, diesel, and jet fuel. The NYT explains: “In 2011, the country pivoted from being the world’s largest importer of petroleum products to becoming one of the leading exporters.” At that point, for the first time in 21 years, refined petroleum became our number one export product—though Pritzker never mentioned that.

The “energy world changed.” But, as NYT points out, exports could soak up the excess production, “but there are still political hurdles.”

For crude oil, the problem is energy policy enacted before the “energy world changed.” Signed into law in 1975, after the 1973 Arab oil embargo shook the U.S. with high oil prices, the goal of the Energy Policy and Conservation Act, according to the International Business Times, was “to stifle the impact of future oil embargos by foreign oil producing countries.” The result was a ban on most U.S. oil exports—though some exceptions can be made and the Commerce Department has recently given export licenses to two companies for particular types of oil. The WSJ reports: “Ten companies have applied for similar ruling to export oil.”

For natural gas exports, the problem is two-fold. Exporting natural gas is not prohibited, but it is not encouraged or made easy. In order to export natural gas, it must be converted into Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG)—which is done at multibillion-dollar facilities with long lead times for permitting and construction that require purchase contracts to back up financing. Many potential customers for U.S. LNG are non-Free Trade Agreement (FTA) countries. Currently, Breaking Energy (BE) reports, “the Department of Energy (DOE) has issued five final and four conditional approvals for LNG export to non-FTA countries.” The Financial Times says about two dozen U.S. LNG export facilities have been proposed with four “already under construction, which have contracts to back up their financing.” Last month, according to Reuters, looking to reduce dependence on supplies from Russia, Lithuania signed an agreement to purchase LNG from the U.S.’s first export terminal: Cheniere Energy Inc.’s Sabine Pass, which is expected to send its first cargoes by the end of this year.

Fortunately, as I predicted in November, there are fixes in the works that, as energy historian Daniel Yergin said, symbolize “a new era in U.S. energy and U.S. energy relations with the rest of the world.”

In January, Senators John Barrasso (R-WY) and Martin Heinrich (D-NM) introduced the LNG Permitting Certainty and Transparency Act to expedite DOE decisions on LNG export applications. It specifically requires a decision on any LNG export application within 45 days after the environmental review document for the project is published. Currently, applications to export natural gas to non-FTA countries require the Secretary of Energy to make a public interest determination which includes a public comment period. Not surprisingly, “environmental groups are lobbying the Obama Administration to veto the bill.” BE states: “The bipartisan bill could garner enough votes to gain a filibuster-proof majority in the Senate.”

A month later, Representative Joe Barton (R-TX), along with 14 co-sponsors, introduced a bill to end the crude oil export ban: HR 702. On March 25, the House Foreign Affairs Committee will meet to debate and vote on the bill—though its passage is not as optimistic as the LNG bill. Bloomberg sees that lawmakers on both sides of the aisle are weary, fearing “that they’d be blamed if gasoline prices climb after the ban is lifted.” Oil producers support lifting the ban, while refiners oppose it.

In October, David Goldwyn, the State Department’s coordinator for international energy affairs in the first Obama administration, said: “The politics are hard.” He added: “When the economics become overwhelming the politics will shift.” The NYT stated: The telltale sign of a glut will be a collapse in the West Texas Intermediate (WTI) price, the principal American oil benchmark, which is currently [October 2014] about $3 below the world Brent price.” It continues, “If the spread cracks open, the economic arguments for free export of domestic crude will probably win the day.”

That day may have come. On March 13, the WSJ editorial board announced: “WTI now trades 20% below the world market price.” Holman Jenkins, who writes the Business World column for the WSJ, says: “Oil producers are already being denied a premium of $12 a barrel by not being allowed to export this oil.” Thomas Tunstall, research director at the University of Texas at San Antonio’s Institute for Economic Development, reported: “Before the rapid increase in U.S. oil and gas production, WTI historically sold at a slight premium to Brent, typically about $1-$3 per barrel.”

“U.S. pump prices are mainly tied to the price of Brent crude, which is freely traded on the world market and is higher than it might otherwise be because of the ban on U.S. exports,” explains the WSJ. “If U.S. producers were allowed to compete globally, prices of Brent and WTI would converge over time, and U.S. gasoline prices would come down, all things being equal.”

Now, the “industry that has done much to keep the national economy afloat” is in trouble. There have been some 74,000 layoffs in the U.S. oil patch since November.

If Congress could muster up the political will to lift the arcane oil export ban, the U.S. could emerge as a major world exporter, which according to the NYT, would result in the “return to a status that helped make the country a great power in the first half of the 20th century.” Yergin adds: “Economically, it means that money that was flowing out of the United States into sovereign wealth funds and treasuries around the world will now stay in the U.S. and be invested in the U.S., creating jobs. It doesn’t change everything, but it certainly provides a new dimension to U.S. influence in the world.”

Pritzker brags that the Commerce Department has “worked with the private sector to help businesses reach customers overseas; … to open new markets for U.S. goods and services; to reform the export-control process; and to overcome barriers to entry.” For U.S. oil-and-gas producers the biggest barrier to reaching customers overseas and opening up new markets is our own energy policy—something the administration and Congress have taken steps to fix. According to Bloomberg, if they knew the public was with them, lawmakers could easily save American jobs and investment, lower gasoline prices, help balance our trade deficit, aid our allies, and increase U.S. influence in the world.

The author of Energy Freedom, Marita Noon serves as the executive director for Energy Makes America Great Inc. and the companion educational organization, the Citizens’ Alliance for Responsible Energy (CARE). She hosts a weekly radio program: America’s Voice for Energy—which expands on the content of her weekly column.

Conspiracy Brews 1.31.15

Conspiracy Brews @ SW Secondary Learning Center 9:00 AM – 10:15 PM on 31 Jan 145
Robby Robertson who regularly attended our meeting passed away. His service will be at 11:00 AM at the Masonic Lodge on Osuna. His obituary is at the end of this notice. Our meeting today will shut down at 10:15 sharp.
If you like your coffee and your politics flavorful, served with a heaping dose of civility by a diverse group of interesting people from all parts of the political spectrum then you should be joining us every Saturday. Started in 2007 over coffee and lively conversation by a group of concerned friends and neighbors, ‘Conspiracy Brews’ is committed to finding solutions to some of our State’s toughest problems. Our zest for constructive political discourse is only equaled by our belief that the only way forward is to exchange our views in a relaxed and friendly setting. For additional information or to be added to our e-mail list contact: ConspiracyBrews@aol.com.
Conspiracy Brews
“Be civil to all; sociable to many; familiar with few; friend to one; enemy to none.”

Benjamin Franklin
Not your average political discussion group!
January 31, 2015
9:00 AM to 10:15 PM
at
Southwest Secondary Learning Center
10301 Candelaria Rd NE
(northwest corner of Candelaria and Morris)

We think that government should be open and honest at all times.
People from all political parties are welcome.
*** Quotes of the Week ***
“You cannot shake hands with a clenched fist.”

Indira Gandhi

“The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience.”

Eleanor Roosevelt

Suggested Topics

— What is the perception of Albuquerque & APD? How is the mayor handling it?

http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2015/02/02/son-deceased

http://www.koat.com/news/berry-reacts-to-new-yorker-article-defends-actions-against-brandenburg/30952442

— The President ordered his Iran negotiators to finalize a deal in Iran…any comments?

(Light Quotes of the week)

“O Lord, help me to be pure, but not yet.”

Saint Augustine (354 AD – 430 AD)

“If a thing isn’t worth saying, you sing it.”

Pierre Beaumarchais (1732 -1799 )

All is in the hands of man. Therefore wash them often.”

Stanislaw J. Lec

——-

James Douglass “Robby” Robertson
11-27-1925 – 1-26-2015

Mr. James Douglass Robertson of Albuquerque, NM, died Monday, January 26, 2015. He was
89 years of age.

“Robby”, as he was known to his friends, was born in Groton, CT, on November 27, 1925, and is
survived by four children, Margaret Robertson, Groton, CT; Elizabeth Weil, Groton; CT, Ted
Robertson, Colorado Springs, CO; and Carl Robertson, Cromwell, CT; two grandchildren and two
great grandchildren, all residing in southeastern, CT.

Mr. Robertson was a member of the United States Navy for 8 years followed by 20 years in the
Army. He served with the Navy in the Pacific Theater during WWII and in Korea and Viet Nam
with the Army, retiring in 1969 as a Major and moved his family to Groton, CT, in 1970.

Mr. Robertson settled in Albuquerque, NM, in the mid-1980s. He was an active amateur radio
operator, a photographer, square dancer and loved to travel the country during the summer
months. He was the family genealogist which led him to Europe as part of the project. He filled
his spare time supporting community organizations and events. He was also a member of the
Masonic order, the second most current in a line of Masons dating to the 1700s. His home
lodge was Temple 6 in Albuquerque, NM.

He was an accomplished writer, publishing his book, “Robby”, in 2012, which chronicles his life
and experiences as a teenager during WWII.

Mr. Robertson’s storied life will be commemorated during memorial services at the Masonic
lodge in Albuquerque on Saturday, January 27, at 11:00 a.m. followed by a reception for
attendees. The address is: 3801 Osuna Rd., Albuquerque, NM, 87109.

In lieu of flowers, Mr. Robertson’s family is requesting donations be made in is name to
Veterans for Peace, Chapter 63, at 202 Harvard Rd. NE, Albuquerque, NM, 87102, or, to the
Masonic Lodge in care of Temple #6, 3801 Osuna Rd., Albuquerque, NM 87109.

Conspiracy Brews 1.17.15

If you like your coffee and your politics flavorful, served with a heaping dose of civility by a diverse group of interesting people from all parts of the political spectrum then you should be joining us every Saturday. Started in 2007 over coffee and lively conversation by a group of concerned friends and neighbors, ‘Conspiracy Brews’ is committed to finding solutions to some of our State’s toughest problems. Our zest for constructive political discourse is only equaled by our belief that the only way forward is to exchange our views in a relaxed and friendly setting. For additional information or to be added to our e-mail list contact: ConspiracyBrews@aol.com.
Conspiracy Brews

“Be civil to all; sociable to many; familiar with few; friend to one; enemy to none.”

Benjamin Franklin
Not your average political discussion group!
January 17, 2015
9:00 AM to 12:00 PM
at
Southwest Secondary Learning Center
10301 Candelaria Rd NE
(northwest corner of Candelaria and Morris)

We think that government should be open and honest at all times.
People from all political parties are welcome.
*** Quotes of the Week ***

“It takes a great deal of bravery to stand up to our enemies, but just as much to stand up to our friends.”

J.K. Rowling (Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone)

“It is never too late to be what you might have been.”

George Elliot

Suggested Topics

— The Mayor, the DA, the Police Chief, the Press, the Public, the Police Union and the CAO…What is truth?***

— Boko Haram…Does anyone give a hoot?***

–Why can’t NM become an Entrepreneur Hub?***

— Should Hawaii become a separate county?***

— The President want the US Government to pay for community college attendance…what you think. ***

(Light Quotes of the week)

“Women and cats will do as they please, and men and dogs should relax and get used to the idea.”

Robert A. Heinlein

“Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and it may be necessary from time to time to give a stupid or misinformed behold a black eye.”

Jim Henson

“All you need is love. But a little chocolate now and then doesn’t hurt.”

Charles M. Schulz

——-

Spoken like a true Obama

Wreckord3WebCR-12_30_14

Marita Noon: About elections and petro prices

Marita Noon

Commentary by Marita Noon

Executive Director, Energy Makes America Great Inc.

 

The oil price election connection

After years of rising gasoline prices, people are puzzled by the recent drop that has a gallon of gas at levels not seen in nearly four years. Typically in times of Middle East unrest, prices at the pump spike, yet, despite the violence in Iraq and Syria, gallon of gas is now at a national average of $3.

The public hopes it will last. The oil industry can’t afford continued price suppression.

I believe the price will tick up in the days ahead (post-election)—which will make it economic for producers to continue to develop—but the increases will not be so dramatic as to take away the economic stimulus the low prices provide.

Experts call the low cost the “equivalent to a tax cut averaging almost $600 for every household in the U.S.” while it boosts our gross domestic product by 0.4 percent. Consumers surely welcome the reprieve. But why now and why won’t it last?

As gasoline prices have made headlines, several narratives are repeated. Generally the explanations revolve around two basic truths—but, as we’ll explore, there is more.

The reasons offered for the drop in prices at the pump (which reflects the price of a barrel of oil) are 1) increased North American oil production and, 2) sluggish economic growth in Europe and Asia—which together result in a surplus, or a global glut, of oil.

American Abundance

Following a multi-decade decline, U.S. oil output now stands at a 28-year high—up 80 percent since 2008. Thanks to the combined technologies of hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling, the U.S. equaled Saudi Arabia’s production over the summer and experts predict the U.S. to become the world’s top producer by 2015. CNN Money reports: “The U.S. isn’t addicted to foreign oil anymore. The shale gas boom in the U.S. is a game changer for oil prices.” Our country’s oil imports have fallen from 60 percent of consumption to less than 30 percent. The data proves out what any beginning economics student knows: more supply + less demand = lower prices.

ISIS Influence

The U.S. has changed global oil markets, but so has ISIS. Several months ago, when ISIS first emerged as a threat to Iraq’s oil production, oil prices experienced the usual uptick. However, when the Iraqis and Kurds thwarted its southern movement and it did not take over Basra’s oil fields, prices eased.

In this new war, different from the days of Al-Qaeda, rather than blowing up oil fields to hurt Western economies, ISIS captures oil-producing regions in Syria and Iraq and uses the bounty for its own benefit.

ISIS has become a real player in the global oil markets. The territory controlled by ISIS has a pre-war capacity of 350,000 barrels per day (bpd). Estimates vary, but it is widely believed that ISIS produces 50-80,000 bpd—most of which the terror group on the black market at prices assumed to be $25-60 per barrel. ISIS reportedly funds its activities with oil revenues as low as $1 million a month to as high as $3 million a day—with $2 million a day being the most frequently cited (likely paid in cash or bartered goods). Production and revenues could easily increase if it were not for the militant’s limited technical prowess in working in the oil fields. To overcome the lack, ISIS is advertising for experienced engineers to run its oil operations (apparently the we’ll-kill-your-family-if-don’t-work approach hasn’t been successful).

ISIS doesn’t abide by any international agreements or price regulations. This is a “black market.” There are no tangible income or production numbers. We don’t definitively know all of ISIS’ customers.

The region’s long-established smuggling routes make it easy for the oil to be trafficked out of the territory. Once in the hands of middlemen, “no big traders, no serious companies are going to fool around with that oil,” says Matthew M. Reed, vice-president of Foreign Reports, a Washington-based consulting firm that analyzes oil and politics in the Middle East. He continues: “That oil is essentially radioactive at this point. No one wants to touch it.”

But, someone buys it—to the tune of millions of dollars a day. Who would buy the “radioactive” oil?

Some of ISIS’ heavily discounted oil reportedly ends up in Pakistan. A CNN article titled: “How Iraq’s black market in oil funds ISIS” states: “ISIS controls smuggling routes and the crude is transported by tankers to Jordan via Anbar province, to Iran via Kurdistan, to Turkey via Mosul, to Syria’s local market and to the Kurdistan region of Iraq, where most of it gets refined locally.” As Reed pointed out, legitimate traders won’t deal in it, so it likely goes to nations that care little about the rule of law—perhaps, North Korea and China. The outlets that are soaking up the discounted oil, are not buying the full-price oil, which leaves millions of dollars, 50-80,000 barrels, a day of full-price oil, on the table, looking for a buyer.

So, U.S. oil and ISIS oil continue to put a lot of supply into the market, keeping the price low. Unless coalition forces successfully bomb the oil fields in ISIS control, the black market oil supply will grow. If Republicans, who support developing our resources, take control of the U.S. Senate, our production could well increase. Both will help keep supply high, and prices low.

Saudi Strategy

The last piece in the low-priced oil puzzle is Saudi Arabia. BusinessWeek states: “With the U.S. on track to become the world’s largest oil producer by next year, it’s become popular in Washington and on Wall Street to call America the new Saudi Arabia. Yet the real Saudi Arabia hasn’t relinquished its role as the producer with the most influence over oil prices.”

The Saudi kingdom reportedly needs oil at $83.60 a barrel to balance its national budget. Yet, in September, with prices already down, due to a global oil glut, the Saudis boosted production. Then, in October, it lowered prices by increasing the discount offered to its Asian customers. Oil prices have reached the lowest level in nearly four years. Despite calls for price hikes from other OPEC nations, primarily Venezuela (which recently announced food rationing), the Saudi policy will not likely change before the November 27 OPEC meeting.

Saudi Arabia’s price war has surprised the markets and made watchers wonder what they are up to. With its government 85 percent dependent on its oil revenues, the Saudis need to protect their turf as the dominant force in oil.

Some say the move “is the result of a deliberate strategy by the Gulf nation to test the mettle of rival producers from Russia, to fellow OPEC member Iran and US shale producers.” Most experts agree that keeping prices low hurts higher-cost production such as that from U.S. shale oil and Canadian tar sands. Higher prices encourage more discovery and development. A report from Aljazeerah claims: “OPEC leader Saudi Arabia hopes to claw share from U.S. producers.”

The Financial Times reports: “The lower prices also appear to be designed to put a brake on the shale oil boom, which has been the most significant upheaval in global energy for a decade.”

Two years ago, Saudi Arabia did much the same thing—increasing production and dropping oil/gasoline prices. At that time, the U.S. faced an important presidential election where one candidate loudly supported America’s new energy abundance and the other’s energy agenda was all about “green.” Had gasoline still cost in the range of $4.00 on November 6, 2012, the party in power would have suffered; the public would have been screaming: “Drill, baby, drill.” The Saudis came in and with their unique ability to throttle production up or down, took some heat off of the Obama Administration.

Now, in the midst of another election cycle—one that is very important to the future of oil production in America, the Saudis, once again, appear to be orchestrating geopolitical outcomes. OPEC’s oil output is close to a two-year high—despite production drops in Angola and Nigeria. Saudi Arabia has made up the difference.

Some observers say the Saudis’ increased production in a time of global over-supply “is not about a political attack on the U.S.” Others see it, as “more nuanced.” Yet, last week a Saudi industry official, discussing the production/export data leaks acknowledged: “Sorry, it is politics.”

It seems clear that OPEC does not want U.S. production to increase, and Saudi Arabia is in a position to try influence American politics. Lower prices favor the party in power. A shift in control of the Senate would mean a change in America’s energy policy—one that favors our homegrown energy resources; one that Saudi Arabia doesn’t want.

However, it appears, regardless of possible Saudi meddling, the Senate leadership will shift. Once American voters make that decision on November 4, the OPEC leader will no longer have the incentive to inflict short-term pain on its own economic climate for long-term gain. Saudi Arabia will likely dial back production and the intentionally low price will stabilize—but not so much that it hurts the benefit to the American economy that abundant energy provides.

The American consumers win; American energy producers win. America wins.

(A version of this content was originally published on Breitbart.com)

The author of Energy Freedom, Marita Noon serves as the executive director for Energy Makes America Great Inc. and the companion educational organization, the Citizens’ Alliance for Responsible Energy (CARE). She hosts a weekly radio program: America’s Voice for Energy—which expands on the content of her weekly column.

Conspiracy Brews 9.13.14

If you like your coffee and your politics flavorful, served with a heaping dose of civility by a diverse group of interesting people from all parts of the political spectrum then you should be joining us every Saturday. Started in 2007 over coffee and lively conversation by a group of concerned friends and neighbors, ‘Conspiracy Brews’ is committed to finding solutions to some of our State’s toughest problems. Our zest for constructive political discourse is only equaled by our belief that the only way forward is to exchange our views in a relaxed and friendly setting. For additional information or to be added to our e-mail list contact: ConspiracyBrews@aol.com.

 

Conspiracy Brews

 

“Be civil to all; sociable to many; familiar with few; friend to one; enemy to none.”

 

Benjamin Franklin

Benjamin Franklin.

Benjamin Franklin. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Not your average political discussion group!

 

September 13, 2014

 

9:00 AM – 12:00 PM
at
Southwest Secondary Learning Center
10301 Candelaria Rd NE
(northwest corner of Candelaria and Morris)

 

We think that government should be open and honest at all times.
People from all political parties are welcome.

 

*** Quotes of the Week ***

 

“War’s very object is victory, not prolonged indecision. In war, there is no substitute for victory.”

 

General of the Army Douglas MacArthur

 

English: General of the Army Douglas MacArthur...

English: General of the Army Douglas MacArthur smoking his corncob pipe, probably at Manila, Philippine Islands, 2 August 1945. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“Any party which takes credit for the rain must not be surprised if its opponents blame it for the drought.”

                         Dwight W. Morrow (in a campaign speech, Oct 1930)

English: Dwight Morrow (1873-1931)

English: Dwight Morrow (1873-1931) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

Suggested Topics

 

— When did the National Republican and Democrat Parties become reactionaries rather than visionaries?

 

–We’ve talked about the APS School Board…is it time to act for the upcoming election?

 

— Is New Mexico’s epithet now RIP?

 

(Light Quotes of the week)

 

“His absence is good company.”

 

(Scottish saying) perhaps to Great Britain

 

“Computers are useless. They can only give you answers

 

Pablo Picasso

Pablo Picasso.

Pablo Picasso. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“I loathe people who keep dogs. They are cowards who haven’t got the guts to bite people themselves.”

 

August Strindberg

August Strindberg as an older man

August Strindberg as an older man (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

——-

Edgewood Chamber Friday Blast 6.13.14

  Friday Blast
    June13 , 2014
The Edgewood Chamber
…working for you!

 

 

DON’T MISS OUR JUNE
Mixer

Thursday June 19
Hosted by Sigala’s
Martial Arts
at George Court
(to the back on the right)
Begins at 5:30 to 7pm.
Welcome our almost newest Chamber members, who had their Ribbon Cutting
last Saturday, June 7.

They put on a very entertaining show.
Don’t miss the mixer…and please bring your cards!


 Economic Development

Edgewood residents and businesses are filling out the Economic needs study!  Thank you to all who have taken a few minutes to fill out this important study for the future of our community! If you haven’t done it yet, please 

 

Click below:

Economic Development Survey

 

Tell folks you know that the survey is available on the Edgewood Chamber website, and on the Town of Edgewood Website under Economic Development as well as here.

Deadline for the survey information
June 30.

After the data is gathered, we will prepare an Economic Impact Preparation Recommendation Report which will be used by our committee and leaders to help determine what’s next for Edgewood!

 

Leadership Edgewood

 

Our last class for the year will be held in June, with Arts, History and the IRS.

Graduation will take place on July 18
at the beautiful home of

Peggy and Skip Mead.

We’re hoping to announce our very special guest speaker next week.

LEADERSHIP EDGEWOOD 2015
BEGINS IN JANUARY 2015!

 

 

Coming Soon!
Chamber decals for members to place in your windows to announce that you are serious about your business and have joined the Edgewood Chamber of Commerce!

 

 

 

.

     Area Happenings

This Friday Blast Section is reserved for your events or happenings in the area!  If you have an upcoming event or a special happening that you would like to see in the Blast, please email it to the office by Wednesday. Approved information will be reviewed and inserted in the Blast on the following Friday. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Calling people of all ages who love to have fun

while doing something worthwhile!

On June 14,

Kingdom Krafters
is hosting their very first

Make It & Take It Craft Day

Join the fun from 1-4pm
at the pavilion & soccer fields
located off 344 in Edgewood.

We’re going to raise money for

Rivers of Mercy Orphanage

in Juarez, Mexico!

Pay $3 per person or $10 per family to make quality crafts
you can take home.
(Think painted ceramics and other unusual handmade items…
Not your typical pipe cleaner &
cotton ball event!)

Crafting not your thing?
Take part in our mega raffle
to appreciate what someone else has made!
Whether you’re looking for the perfect
Father’s Day gift
or just need a way to relax, you’re bound to find something you love among our
unique raffle items.
For fun refreshments,
visit our concession stand.

Just follow the signs and keep your eyes open
for fields of people having fun!

Find out more from our website or Facebook page!

www.kingdomkrafters.org
https://www.facebook.com/events/760603517303800/?ref=22

Or call (616)916-1757. Ask for Rachel or Jeremy! 

 

 

The Bethel Community Storehouse

is in need of volunteers.

Many positions are available in the

food pantry, thrift store, donation intake and sorting areas.

Volunteer orientation is held every Thursday at 10 am for ages 14 and up.

You choose the day, time and project.

Bring a friend, or come and make new friends.

Call 832-6642 for more info.

 

 

 

 Wildlife West Nature Park

   Begins our Saturday Night
Chuckwagon BBQ

this Saturday evening at 6pm at
Wildlife West!

Live Cowboy Band,  BBQ Feast,
Live Raptor Show
now through August 30!

Covered seating rain or shine!

Adults $15

Seniors $23

Age: 5-11 $12

Under 5 FREE
Call for Group Rates

Wonderful way to entertain your summer visitors!

Make reservations by 2pm day of show.

Call 505-281-7655, or 1 877 981 WILD

 

New Mexico Horse Rescue at
Walkin n circles Ranch
in celebration of the year of the horse

FOURTH ANNUAL
CHUCK WAGON DINNER

SATURDAY JUNE 21, 2014
Gates open at 4pm
Dinner 5:30
Dancing 7-10

Authentic Chuck Wagon Dinner
Dancing to the Pat Reyes Band
Silent Auction and Ranch Tours
Live Chain Saw Carving by Mark Chavez
Natural Horsemanship Training Demos

Tickets $35 per person
Sponsor table for 8 $400
Children 6-12 $15
under 6 FREE

CALL 505-286-0779 for Reservations

 

 

 

 

-Bear Barn Art Gallery

is open daily 10-5:30 every day except Tuesdays.

Stop by and help support our local artists. Located at Wildlife West Nature Park and Rescued Wildlife Zoo in Edgewood, 87 North Frontage Road past Hunter Building Materials.

Contact Gayle Bone at; 610-8073. gogobone59@copper.net


 

RETRO 66 Meetings:

-RETRO; 18 June, 2014, 1-2:30 PM at Moriarty Civic  Center; 202 S. Broadway

-RETRO; 16 July, 2014, 1-2:30 PM at Edgewood Community Center; 27 N. Frontage Rd just East of Dairy Queen

 

Light Pole Banners

If you are interested in a banner advertising your business along Route 66 or State Road 344 in Edgewood, you can still order yours!

 If there is a vacant spot or if the Town occupies a spot you wish to occupy along Route 66 and 344, you  

can order through the town office,
only $90.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                     

We welcome re-posting of the Friday Blast,with the understanding that the Edgewood Chamber is an independent organization of local business members.

Statements and beliefs on other sites may not be construed as views or positions to which we adhere or agree.
  

      Edgewood Chamber      Join us on Facebook

 

Board Meeting

Monday July 7 at 6:15pm
Chamber office

 

Luncheon

Thursday July 10

11:30 am
Edgewood

Community Center
Come celebrate
Mayor Howard Calkin’s 90th Birthday.
We will hold a surprise reception,
honors and perhaps even a roast for him
from 1 to 3 after the regular luncheon at the Community Center.
Please don’t tell him… (he isn’t online, and won’t see this).

 

Mixer

Thursday June 19
Hosted by Sigala’s
Martial Arts

 

Triple Crown Corporate Partners for 2014

RICH Ford Edgewood
EPCOR Water
Wal-Mart
The Independent
SASS

 

Executive Director:

         Madeline Heitzman


Board of Directors

President:
Chris Hopper       2015

Vice President
Robin Markely      2014
Secretary:
Babara Ormand   2015

Treasurer:
Martha Eden          2014   

 

Board Members at Large:

Ray Seagers                  2015

Saul Araque                   2015

Howard Calkins              2014
Tom Torres                    2014

Julie Bassett                  2015

Committees:
Economic Development:

Tom Torres – Jim Bouton

Ambassadors:

                   Howard Calkins

Political Affairs & By Laws:
Ray Seagers

Events:         Robin Markley

Education:   Julie Bassett
Programs:    Staff/Committee
Luncheon:     Martha Eden
Leadership Alumni Group
Kathy Courreges

RETRO Route 66:  

               Madeline Heitzman

Town of Edgewood
Meetings:

meets First and Third Wednesdays of the month
at 6:30pm
Edgewood Community Center
  Planning & Zoning meets First and Third Tuesdays of the month at 6:00pm Edgewood Community Center.

Other Chambers:
East Mountain Chamber meets
the first Thursday of the month  Call 281-1999 or

info@eastmountainchamber.com

 

Moriarty Chamber meets
at noon the third Tuesday of the month at the Moriarty Civic Center.  Call 832-4087

 

Mountainair Chamber meets the first Tuesday of the month at 11:30am. 847-2975  or
mcc@mountainairchamber.com

 

About Us 
Hours of Operation:
Monday – Thursday
       9am – 5pm

Fridays by appointment.
Since we’re a one person office, when we have other meetings or members to visit, we’re not here. Call 850-2523  and we’ll be sure to meet you!

Location:

95 State Road 344 Ste 3
(Library/Chamber Bldg)
Edgewood, New Mexico

Phone Number

     505-286-2577
e-mail:

info@
edgewoodchambernm.com

 

 

 

 

 

If you are a chamber member,
you can leave your business cards, rack cards and flyers at the Visitors center inside the South door to the Library. Be sure to get your information over here.
It’s part of your benefit as an Edgewood Chamber member!

Stop by the office to see
Madeline if you have
any questions ,
or call my cell 850-2523.

2012 Edgewood Chamber of Commerce – All rights reserved Address:PO Box 457 Edgewood

PO Box 457, Edgewood, NM 87015, USA

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