Read our Lips: No New Taxes! Bokan – Just Do It! 

Editorial Note:  Read our Lips:  No New Taxes!  In case there was any confusion with yesterday’s editorial about “getting our fair share,” The Alliance remains opposed to any new taxes on the oil & gas industry. We repeat: “This proposed ballot initiative is the epitome of instability and needs to be defeated.”

Dunleavy asks federal council to fast-track Southeast rare earths prospect
Elwood Brehmer, Alaska Journal of Commerce, September 4, 2019

Gov. Michael J. Dunleavy wants federal decision makers to approve a fast-tracked permitting plan for one of Alaska’s prime metal prospects.  The governor sent a letter to federal Council on Environmental Quality Chair Mary Neumayr Aug. 9 urging the council to classify the Bokan Mountain rare earth metals prospect as a High Priority Infrastructure Project.  The “High Priority” designation would provide the Bokan project proponents, Nova Scotia-based Ucore Rare Metals Inc., an expedited federal environmental impact statement process aimed at ultimately accelerating development of a mine.  The Bokan Mountain rare earth underground mine prospect near tidewater on southern Prince of Wales Island holds more than 4.7 million metric tons of indicated rare earth ore, according to a 2015 resource assessment by. That translates to approximately 63.5 million pounds of collective rare earth metals, which are used in a plethora of high-tech applications, from smartphones to advanced batteries and fighter jets.

Our Take:   “it’s a significant concern for many federal officials and policymakers because China is still the primary source for rare earths globally and the Chinese government — already engaged in a tense trade dispute with the U.S. — could restrict the flow of these critical metals.”  Enough said. 

 

U.S. shale firms cut budgets, staff as oil-price outlook dims
Jennifer Hiller, Liz Hampton, Reuters, September 6, 2019

Oil producers and their suppliers are cutting budgets, staffs and production goals amid a growing consensus of forecasts that oil and gas prices will stay low for several years.  The U.S. has 904 working rigs, down 14% from a year ago, and even that is probably too many, estimated Harold Hamm, chief executive of shale producer Continental Resources (CLR.N), which has reduced the number of rigs at work.  Bankruptcy filings by U.S. energy producers through mid-August this year have nearly matched the total for the whole of 2018. A stock index of oil and gas producers hit an all-time low in August, a sign investors are expecting more trouble ahead.

 

Dems to push for offshore drilling ban when Congress reconvenes
Rebecca Beitsch, The Hill, September 5, 2019

Democrats have listed putting an end to offshore drilling as a top priority once Congress returns next week.  House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer  (D-Md.) said the chamber would consider blocking offshore drilling in almost all waters surrounding the U.S. when Congress reconvenes next week after the August recess.   “The House will take up three bills that will block oil and gas drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, the Atlantic and Pacific Coasts, and in the Eastern Gulf of Mexico. These bills will help protect our environment and the economies of coastal communities that rely on tourism, outdoor recreation, and fishing,” Hoyer wrote in a letter.

Our Take:  DOA in the Senate.  Ignores the reality that the majority of Alaskans  support responsible development in ANWR.  Waste of time.