Alaska’s new Governor to meet with the President; Judge says “no” to NPRA lawsuits.

Dunleavy among new leaders to meet with Trump
Associated Press, December 10, 2018

Officials in Gov. Dunleavy’s office say he will be meeting with President Donald Trump on Thursday. Officials said Monday that Dunleavy and 12 other newly elected governors and territorial governors will participate in the Washington, D.C., meeting. Dunleavy says in a statement that the meeting is the “first of many opportunities to work in concert with the President and federal officials on advancing my administration’s priorities, like bringing new jobs and investment to Alaska.”

Our Take: Headlamp predicts that these two will get along well and work together to forge a path to America’s energy dominance through Alaska. #huge #winning

Judge dismisses challenges to oil lease sales in the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska
Elizabeth Harball, Alaska’s Energy Desk, KTOO, December 10, 2018

A federal judge in Anchorage has dismissed two lawsuits brought by environmental groups against the Trump administration challenging oil lease sales in the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska, or NPR-A. Environmental groups had argued the federal Bureau of Land Management did not do an adequate environmental review before it held oil lease sales in 2016 and 2017. In one of the lawsuits, the groups also argued the federal government failed to fully consider how oil produced in the 23-million acre Reserve could worsen climate change. The federal government argued it did complete an extensive environmental review for oil leasing in the Reserve under the Obama administration, as part of a management plan for NPR-A finalized in 2013. The Trump administration is currently considering an overhaul of that management plan.

Our Take: Good to see a federal judge acknowledging the extensive work that is done on environmental reviews prior to a lease sale.

EIA Expects US LNG Capacity to Double in 2019
Natural Gas News, December 10, 2018

The US Energy Information Administration (EIA) said December 10 it expects US LNG export capacity to more than double in 2019 as a raft of new liquefaction trains come on-line through the year. The US is home to 3.6bn ft3/day (37.2bn m3/yr) of LNG export capacity now, the EIA says in its latest Today in Energy report, and that is expected to increase to about 4.9bn ft3/day by year-end as new trains enter commercial operation at Cheniere Energy’s Corpus Christi terminal in Texas and its Sabine Pass terminal in Louisiana.

Bank of America sees oil gains in 2019, but that forecast is far from universal
Natasha Turak, CNBC, December 11, 2018

Despite dramatic slides in the oil market, some forecasters remain positive on prices and demand going into 2019. A year ahead outlook report from Bank of America Merrill Lynch expects Brent crude to regain its recent losses in 2019 and settle at $70 a barrel. But amid mounting global uncertainty on everything from trade and monetary policy to politics, that forecast is far from consensus. “Volatility will be high in the near future, but going into 2019, we are constructive on oil prices,” Hootan Yazhari, head of global frontier markets equity research at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, told CNBC’s Dan Murphy on Tuesday

U.S., China Kick Off a New Round of Trade Talks
Bob Davis and Lingling Wei, The Wall Street Journal, December 11, 2018

The U.S. and China started the latest round of trade talks with a phone call involving Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Chinese Vice Premier Liu He. The three senior officials discussed Chinese purchases of agricultural products and changes to fundamental Chinese economic policies during the phone call, said people familiar with the conversation. They didn’t provide further details. As part of the trade truce reached between Mr. Xi and Mr. Trump, Chinese officials are also considering making changes to the Made in China 2025 plan, a state-led industrial policy aimed at enabling Chinese companies to dominate a number of industries such as artificial intelligence and robotics, said people familiar with the matter. The policy is a focal point of the U.S.’s complaints that Beijing engages in unfair trade practices that put foreign firms at a disadvantage to Chinese companies.