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October 14, 2019 02:33 PM UTC

Stupid Facts Keep Messing Up O&G Talking Points

  • by: Colorado Pols
The fracking operation shown in this photo does not really exist. Probably.

Facts have a nasty habit of contradicting nonsense.

If you are someone like President Trump, you deal with the intractable fact problem by just ignoring the existence of true, provable information altogether; this approach got Trump a room at the White House, but it hasn’t been as effective since the 2016 election. Trump’s effusive display of non-factual information has nevertheless emboldened a number of politicians and right-wing sycophants eager to use their bullshit currency whenever possible.

During the 2019 Colorado legislative session, many Republicans shook their fists from the mountaintops about Senate Bill 181, an oil and gas regulation bill that opponents claimed would completely destroy the fossil fuel industry in Colorado and turn us all into a bunch of penniless fools destined to stumble around the Eastern Plains with empty gas cans. As it turned out, this was not even sorta true, but the mythology persists: Just last week a large number of fingers were again pointed at SB-181 amid news that energy giant Halliburton was laying off hundreds of workers (including 178 in Grand Junction). Halliburton itself blamed “local market conditions” resulting from low oil prices and a general surplus of oil and gas in the United States, but that didn’t stop right-wing voices in Colorado from yelling about SB-181.

As Ed Sealover of the Denver Business Journal reported last week, Colorado Sen. Cory Gardner (R-Yuma) directed his ire at SB-181 during a Colorado Chamber of Commerce event in Denver:

On oil and gas regulations, Gardner swerved from federal policy to attack Senate Bill 181 — the Colorado law signed in April allowing local governments more control over drilling and requiring state officials to consider public health and safety above other factors in permitting decisions — saying that it is slowing the number of drilling-permit applications, which will lead to a loss of activity and loss of jobs in the coming years. He said he supports an “all of the above” policy of promoting both traditional and renewable energy; when pressed, he said his focus on renewables includes support for increased funding for the National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden but will not include any mandated percentage of national energy that should come from renewable sources.

“We should increase the percentage of fuel that is clean energy,” Gardner said. “But we should let the market work.” [Pols emphasis]

We highlighted that last part for reasons that will soon become obvious. As Greg Avery reports this afternoon for the Denver Business Journal, the market appears to be working just fine:

Jagged Peak Energy Inc., a Denver-based oil and gas company, is merging with a larger Texas company in a deal worth nearly $2.3 billion that consolidates operations in Texas’ Delaware Basin.

The deal, if it closes as expected early next year, will leave Denver with one less headquarters of a publicly-traded oil and gas company.

So…a Denver-based oil and gas company is merging with a larger Texas company not because of production problems in Colorado, but in order to consolidate operations in Texas.

We all know what’s happening here: Colorado SB-181 is now destroying the oil and gas industry in other states!


7 thoughts on “Stupid Facts Keep Messing Up O&G Talking Points

  1. Oil companies are paying top dollar for office space in Weld County. The future must look bright to them.

    Occidental Oil Company, known for its innovative carbon-capturing and sequestering technology, recently acquired Anadarko in a controversial sale. Occidental Is still enmeshed in a proxy fight, but could be bringing its carbon-  burying tech to Colorado, once that is resolved. 

    Another oil consortium, CIM group, bought up Occidental/Anadarko’s building in Platteville (Weld County) for it operations center.

    CIM Group specializes in renewable energy projects. Oh dear oh my, the fossilonians in Weld may have to learn to sing a different tune. The “March of the Oily Boyz” is becoming passe. 

    SB181 may have actually brought jobs to Weld County, by creating a favorable environment for low-pollution energy alternatives. 

    1. SB181 may have actually brought jobs to Weld County, by creating a favorable environment for low-pollution energy alternatives. 

      💥 💥 💥  (no truer words spoken)

    2. Good points, but don't read too much into the industry's spending on offices, assets, even housing. When they're running operations, not a nickel is spared. They build or lease what they wish. They do donate lavishly to local non-profits, I'll give them that, but the recipients shouldn't drink the snake oil (er, frack fluid) that it'll last.

      Because when the price slips below a certain number, the industry goes poof.  It runs away, blaming guvmint regs.

      Every. Single. Time.




      1. How very true. I grew up in South Louisiana, worked for an oil patch engineering and construction company.  When the going is good, spend like there is no tomorrow. Boom always means a bust is also on the way.

    3. Speaking of Make Coal Great Again real job creators: 

      Renewable Energy Job Boom Creates Economic Opportunity As Coal Industry Slumps

      The renewable energy industry has become a major U.S. employer. E2’s recent Clean Jobs America report found nearly 3.3 million Americans working in clean energy – outnumbering fossil fuel workers by 3-to-1. Nearly 335,000 people work in the solar industry and more than 111,000 work in the wind industry, compared to 211,000 working in coal mining or other fossil fuel extraction. Clean energy employment grew 3.6% in 2018, adding 110,000 net new jobs (4.2% of all jobs added nationally in 2018), and employers expect 6% job growth in 2019.

      E2 reports the fastest-growing jobs across 12 states were in renewable energy during 2018, and renewable energy is already the fastest-growing source of new U.S. electricity generation, leading the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics to forecastAmerica’s two fastest-growing jobs through 2026 will be solar installer (105% growth) and wind technician (96% growth).

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