Oklahoma Environmentalists, Execs Ponder Paths of America's Energy Policy

By Terry-Cobo, Sarah | THE JOURNAL RECORD, December 14, 2012 | Go to article overview

Oklahoma Environmentalists, Execs Ponder Paths of America's Energy Policy


Terry-Cobo, Sarah, THE JOURNAL RECORD


Energy executives say their industry is paralyzed; environmentalists wonder what happened to policies promising alternative energy. The next four years could shape the American energy landscape for decades.

On Friday, five of the best minds in energy in Oklahoma sat down to discuss how the election will affect our nation's energy policy for generations to come.

Miles Tolbert, energy and environmental attorney and director at Crowe and Dunlevy law firm, joined Harold Hamm, chairman and CEO of Continental Resources; J. Larry Nichols, executive chairman of Devon Energy; Oklahoma Secretary of Energy Michael Ming; and environmental and energy attorney Jim Roth.

For those in the energy industry, the next four years are the best of times and the worst of times, Tolbert said.

Hamm said, and Nichols agreed, that for the first time in their lives, North America could achieve energy independence. That accomplishment is not just technologically remarkable; both consider it a patriotic feat.

If America stopped importing oil, U.S. troops would no longer have to die to protect energy resources in the Middle East, Hamm said.

But an increase in federal regulations from the Environmental Protection Agency and the Fish and Wildlife Service stands in the way of drilling our way to freedom from Middle Eastern petroleum, the energy executives said. To add insult to injury, these executives believe some Americans are opposed to all fossil fuels at any cost. This future of solar and wind energy only isn't realistic. All five experts want the administration to be realistic in developing an energy policy that won't forsake the economy on behalf of the environment.

Not all regulations are bad, Nichols said. But the state has the most experience and the best ability to control environmental damage and safety hazards, he said, and while the president seems to be reluctantly embracing natural gas as a cleaner fuel, his actions and the actions of his administrative agencies will tell the true story.

At a crossroads

Part of the problem President Barack Obama has is that his political base is in favor of renewable energy sources, such as wind and solar. Keeping that political base happy when there's a newfound abundance of fossil fuels available in the United States is a challenge, said Roth, an attorney with Phillips Murrah.

The Keystone XL pipeline controversy is a perfect example of that crossroads, Nichols said. Labor unions were in favor of building the pipeline from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico, but environmentalists put pressure on the administration to delay the permit to cross international borders.

"He punted on that," Nichols said. "He endangered our relationship with China, and now Canada is actively working with China to build a pipeline (to supply that market)."

The next four years will show how sincere Obama is about the all- of-the-above approach to energy policy, Ming said. As new supplies of oil and gas came on-line in the last few years, producers helped keep the Oklahoma economy above water, he said.

"Our policy is that the greenest thing we can do is take the energy we have and make it better," Ming said.

Drilling a single well deeper and longer can tap more resources underground with less effects to the surface, he said.

State knows best

Energy executives and state officials see new federal regulations as unnecessary and burdensome. New air quality rules will limit smog- forming pollution and hazardous chemicals emitted by power plants, drilling operations and oil tank farms.

Roth said that the EPA doesn't have the resources to regulate Oklahoma operations to the level of that by state agencies.

Nichols said the federal agency doesn't have the decades of expertise, either. Hamm agreed, saying the first state rules on underground injection in oil and gas drilling were created in 1913.

In the absence of environmental harm or safety risks, more regulations only hinder the oil and gas industry, Nichols said. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Oklahoma Environmentalists, Execs Ponder Paths of America's Energy Policy
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.