BPC asks White House to formally coordinate federal energy policies

The Bipartisan Policy Center urged President Barack Obama’s administration to make energy a top policy priority in its second term. BPC recommended forming a national energy strategy council to oversee all US energy policy aspects, and directing the US Department of Energy secretary to conduct a federal interagency energy policy review every 4 years.

BPC’s new report recommends a framework and process within the federal executive branch similar to the approach to develop national energy security in which the administration prepares a strategy subject to a quadrennial review prepared by the US Department of Defense.

“[DOE] and 20 other agencies involved in energy policy each play an important role in the development and implementation of our national energy policy,” noted former US Sen. Byron L. Dorgan (D-ND), who was on the Energy and Natural Resources Committee and now is a co-chairman of BPC’s Energy Project. “But with that many agencies involved in energy issues, coordination, implementation, and oversight are often difficult. It’s like an orchestra without a conductor. While the Obama administration is currently assembling itself for the next four years, the time is ripe to reevaluate how our energy policies can be better structured,” he said.

An early release

BPC plans to issue a fuller set of federal energy policy recommendations early in 2013. It decided to issue this report now so the White House will have some fresh energy ideas as it forms its team for the next 4 years. The report also is aimed at members of the incoming 113th Congress, which would have to pass legislation implementing the recommendations if the White House embraces them.

“With the beginning of a new presidential term, we have a remarkable opportunity to institutionalize a process for creating strategic national energy policy,” said retired US Marine Corps Gen. Jim Jones, who led the US European Command from 2003 to 2006 and is Energy Security Chairman within BPC’s Energy Project. “The recommendations we present today establish an architecture to improve energy goal setting, policy formulation, and coordination.”

Given the long lead times major energy projects require, Jones said achieving long-term objectives requires visionary short-term actions. “The parts of government which deal with energy now have no way to come together,” he indicated. “This would not require major expenditures—simply rearranging some deck chairs.”

Tackling this lack of policy coordination now—when the US energy outlook has moved from scarcity to abundance—makes more sense than waiting for the next supply crunch, maintained former US Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott (R-Miss.), who is the BPC Energy Project’s other co-chairman.

“This is a coordination—not a command-and-control—concept,” he explained. “It’s a way to bring all these groups together.”

Inclusive effort

“Our concept involves Cabinet officers, but it’s open to all stakeholders,” added former US Environmental Protection Agency Administrator William K. Reilly, who is the BPC Energy Project’s Energy and Environment chairman. “The effort is intended to be inclusive, and take advantage of everyone’s knowledge and expertise.”

BPC officials said they already have spoken with Obama administration officials about their recommendations.

Lott said he also has spoken directly with US Sen. Ronald L. Wyden (D-Ore.), the likely new Energy and Natural Resources Committee chairman, as well as the committee’s ranking minority member, Lisa Murkowski (R-Alas.), and US Sen. Richard Burr (R-NC), who is a member of the Senate Finance Committee’s Energy, Natural Resources, and Infrastructure Subcommittee.

Jones said BPC hopes the US Chamber of Commerce and other public policy organizations will support the proposals. “We haven’t worked on this for 2 years to let our recommendations sit around and gather dust,” Dorgan added.

Contact Nick Snow at nicks@pennwell.com.

Related Articles

EPA approves Magellan’s Corpus Christi splitter project

12/12/2014 The US Environmental Protection Agency has issued a final greenhouse gas prevention of significant deterioration construction permit to Magellan Pr...

Keyera to take majority interest in Alberta gas plant

12/12/2014 Keyera Corp., Calgary, will pay $65 million (Can.) to buy a 70.79% ownership interest in the Ricinus deep-cut gas plant in west-central Alberta.

PBF Energy, PBF Logistics make management changes

12/12/2014 Matthew Lucey, currently executive vice-president of PBF Energy Inc., will succeed Michael Gayda as the company’s president. Todd O’Malley, current...

TAEP: TPI still peaking, but ‘contraction unavoidable’ as oil prices fall

12/12/2014 The Texas Petro Index (TPI), a composite index based on a comprehensive group of upstream economic indicators released by the Texas Alliance of Ene...

MARKET WATCH: NYMEX crude oil price extends slump

12/12/2014 Crude oil prices extended their slump on the New York market with a Dec. 11 settlement of less than $60/bbl for January, and prices continued downw...

US needs more data before ending crude export ban, House panel told

12/11/2014 Much more environmental impact information is needed before the US can reasonably remove crude oil export limits, a witness told a House Energy and...

BOEM raises offshore oil spill liability limit to $134 million

12/11/2014 The US Bureau of Ocean Energy Management increased the liability limit for oil-spill related damages from offshore operations to $134 million from ...

Rosneft, Essar sign terms of oil supply agreement

12/11/2014 OAO Rosneft and Essar Energy PLC have signed key terms of an oil supply agreement in New Delhi. Rosneft said shipments to India may begin in 2015.

Barton introduces bill to remove US crude export limits

12/11/2014

US Rep. Joe Barton (R-Tex.) introduced legislation that would remove US crude oil export limits that have been in place for nearly 40 years.

White Papers

Available Webcasts



The Future of US Refining

When Fri, Feb 6, 2015

Oil & Gas Journal’s Feb. 6, 2015, webcast will focus on the future of US refining as various forces this year conspire to pull the industry in different directions. Lower oil prices generally reduce feedstock costs, but they have also lowered refiners’ returns, as 2015 begins with refined products priced at lows not seen in years. If lower per-barrel crude prices dampen production of lighter crudes among shale plays, what will happen to refiners’ plans to export more barrels of lighter crudes? And as always, refiners will be affected by government regulations, particularly those that suppress demand, increase costs, or limit access to markets or supply.

register:WEBCAST


Oil & Gas Journal’s Forecast & Review/Worldwide Pipeline Construction 2015

When Fri, Jan 30, 2015

The  Forecast & Review/Worldwide Pipeline Construction 2015 Webcast will address Oil & Gas Journal’s outlooks for the oil market and pipeline construction in a year of turbulence. Based on two annual special reports, the webcast will be presented by OGJ Editor Bob Tippee and OGJ Managing Editor-Technology Chris Smith.
The Forecast & Review portion of the webcast will identify forces underlying the collapse in crude oil prices and assess prospects for changes essential to recovery—all in the context of geopolitical pressures buffeting the market.

register:WEBCAST



On Demand

Optimizing your asset management practices to mitigate the effects of a down market

Thu, Dec 11, 2014

The oil and gas market is in constant flux, and as the price of BOE (Barrel of Oil Equivalent) goes down it is increasingly important to optimize your asset management strategy to stay afloat.  Attend this webinar to learn how developing a solid asset management plan can help your company mitigate costs in any market.

register:WEBCAST


Parylene Conformal Coatings for the Oil & Gas Industry

Thu, Nov 20, 2014

In this concise 30-minute webinar, participants have an opportunity to learn more about how Parylene coatings are applied, their features, and the value they add to devices and components.

register:WEBCAST


Careers at TOTAL

Careers at TOTAL - Videos

More than 600 job openings are now online, watch videos and learn more!

 

Click Here to Watch

Other Oil & Gas Industry Jobs

Search More Job Listings >>
Stay Connected