Marita Noon

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Elon Musk (Scott Olson / Getty)

SolarCity and the Silver Spoon

Having a successful business takes a lot of hard work, good market analysis, a better product or service than the competition, and advertising. Add in a bit of luck, and hopefully it will grow. If, however, you are a politically favored business—say solar—your story is different.

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GOP Energy Report Card, 2015

Last year, when Republicans gained a decisive edge in both houses of Congress, I made predictions as to the six energy-policy changes we could expect—as the two parties have very different views on energy issues.

With Paris Climate Conference Complete, What’s Next and What Does It Cost?

Recently, the Sierra Club announced an effort “to prevent the extraction of fossil fuels right from the start,” a campaign known as “Keep it in the ground.” The plan seeks to “shut down coal mines, and crack down on hydraulic fracturing, along with stopping the transportation of fossil fuels in oil trains, pipelines and coal export terminals.”

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Finding Fault with the Facts in the President’s Presentation in Paris

Paris, the City of Light, which earned its moniker by early on adapting natural gas to light its public spaces, hosts COP21 (the 21st Conference of the Parties)—often referred to as the UN Climate Change Conference—that aims to end the use of fossil fuels. There, more than 150 world leaders gathered under the guise of, supposedly, slowing the warming of the planet.

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Ethanol Loses Its Few Friends

Early in his campaign, now top-tier Republican presidential candidate, Ben Carson, supported ethanol—a position for which I called him out. It has long been thought, that to win in Iowa, a candidate must support ethanol. However, in a major policy reversal, Carson told a national audience during the CNBC GOP debate that he no longer supports subsidies for any industry, including U.S. ethanol producers.

On Climate Change, Catholic Leaders Must Believe in Miracles

For the first time, “Catholic leaders representing all regional and national bishops conferences” have come together in a “joint appeal.” According to reporting in the New York Times, Cardinal Oswald Gracias, archbishop of Mumbai, India, called the October 26 meeting at the Vatican a “historic occasion.” What brought all these Catholic leaders together for the first time? Not the refugee crisis in Europe. Not the plight of Christians in the Middle East. Not a prayer meeting or a Bible study. It was climate change.

Franz von Holzhausen; Tesla Model X

Tesla’s ‘Success’ a Great Example of How Regulations Manipulate Markets

The American consumer resists marketing aimed at selling them electric and hybrid vehicles. For the first quarter of 2015, according to the Wall Street Journal (WSJ), Chevrolet sold 1,874 Volts—its electric car introduced in 2010 with “high expectations.” That roughly equals the number of Silverado pick-up trucks sold in one day.

anti-fracking campaigners

Duh: Earthquakes Not Caused by Fracking

MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow gleefully teased the earthquakes in Oklahoma as “the story that might keep you up at night.” On her October 16 show, she stated that Oklahoma’s earthquakes are: “The terrible and unintended consequence of the way we get oil and gas out of the ground.… from fracking operations.” Yet, when her guest, Jeremy Boak, Oklahoma Geological Survey director, corrected her by saying “it’s not actually frackwater,” she didn’t change her tune.

Beyond the Bickering, Bill Lifting Oil-Export Ban Wins Bipartisan Support

Americans are sick of the bickering in Washington and want both parties to cooperate and get something done. Friday, October 9, offered proof that this can still happen. The house passed H.R. 702, the bill to lift the decades old oil export ban—with 26 Democrats joining the majority of Republicans and voting for it.

Sage Grouse

Five Victories for Responsible Land Use

Washington’s overreach has been rolled back by courts and commissioners. In little more than 30 days, there have been five distinct cases that you may have missed—each a victory for responsible land use.

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Oil Is Down. Gasoline Isn’t. What’s Up?

A little more than a year ago, oil prices reached above $100 a barrel. Gasoline averaged in the $3.50 range nationally. In late spring, oil appeared $60ish and the national average for gas remained around $2.70. The price of a barrel of oil has since plunged to $40 and below—yet, prices at the pump remain just slightly less than they were when oil was almost double what it is today.

solar

Obama’s Clean Power Plan: Solar Companies Win, Taxpayer’s Lose

President Obama’s Clean Power Plan, released in its final form on Monday, August 3, sparked jubilation in the solar industry. The same day, however, some other news reminded the public of what happens when government policy mandates and incentivizes a favored energy source: Taxpayer dollars are gobbled up and investors lose out.

Mexico’s Energy Reform Is Rolling, Albeit with Training Wheels

Mexico’s President Enrique Peña Nieto reformed his country’s energy policy and invited outside intelligence and investment to boost slumping oil output. In late 2013, he amended the Constitution to allow private and foreign companies to explore and produce oil and gas in Mexico—for the first time in nearly eight decades. The amendments put an end to the government monopoly. Nieto hopes his reforms will bring in $50 billion in investment by 2018.

Training target of U.S. solar funding

The Best Renewable Energy Investment

If you live in the United States, vote, pay taxes, and get your electricity from a utility company, you’ve helped the solar power industry. You support the solar industry through a variety of tax and regulatory policies—voted in by politicians you elected—that favor it over other lower-cost forms of electricity generation.

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The Link Between Climate and Poverty

The climate alarmists, generally the same people who dis the church and its position on abortion, the origin of life on earth, and the definition of marriage, appear practically giddy over Pope Francis’ recently released climate encyclical. Even Al Gore, who admits he was “raised in the Southern Baptist tradition,” has declared he “could become a Catholic because of this pope.”

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Will 2015 Be the Year of Renewable Fuel Standard Reform?

That the Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee attacks the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) management—er, mismanagement—of the federal renewable fuel standard (RFS) indicates the growing frustration over both the agency and the RFS itself.

Republican Candidates Must Be Strong on Energy

New polling emphasizes that support for traditional energy concerns has become a partisan issue. Large majorities of Republicans favor key energy issues—but voters of every ideological stripe say energy issues will be an important part of their voting decisions.

Ex-Im Bank Crucial to Clinton Crony Capitalism Faces Closure

The Export-Import Bank generates headlines because, after more than three-quarters of a century, it is about to go away. But it won’t go away if Democrat presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, and Republican Senator Lindsey Graham, can do something about it.

Another Domino Falls for Anti-Fossil Fuel Crusaders

Throughout the United States, especially in communities with existing or potential oil-and-gas development, outside groups have moved in with a vengeance and agitated the population—resulting in bans against all exploration for hydrocarbons and/or the use of hydraulic fracturing. Expensive lawsuits have been filed and courts have repeatedly declared such bans as “unconstitutional.” The newest domino to fall is in Texas where Governor Greg Abbott, on May 18, signed House Bill 40 (HB40)—also known as the Denton Fracking Bill—which clarifies that an “oil and gas operation is subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of the state. Breitbart Texas reported on the bill’s passage.

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What if We Lose?

In the United States, and most of the western world, there is an ideological war with dire physical consequences. It is the war on fossil fuels. But, even if you understand that energy is central to everything in modern society, the war is much bigger than energy. It is about freedom. It is about control. It is about global governance.

Ben Carson

Dear Ben Carson: Call Me Maybe

Dr. Carson, I know you are smart, very smart. But you know medicine. You need very smart people to advise you on energy policy now, before you address the topic any further. I have a cadre of energy experts that I could make available to you—and any candidate who wants smart energy policy. Call me, maybe?

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The Pope and Climate Change

Perhaps you missed the Vatican-sponsored international symposium on climate change held in Rome on April 28. It was a busy news day. The horrific earthquake killed thousands in Nepal and riots broke out in Baltimore.

A Bad Time for the Renewable Energy Industry

The year 2015 may go down as when support for renewable energy flipped. Policy adjustments—whether for electricity generation or transportation fuels—are in the works on both the state and federal levels.

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Deepwater Horizon Five Years Later: Lessons Learned

Five years ago, following a blowout and explosion on the Deepwater Horizon rig that killed 11 workers, the nation was spellbound by the 87-day visual of oil flowing freely into the waters of the Gulf of Mexico from the Macondo well. The 3.1 million barrels of spewed oil has been called “the world’s largest accidental marine spill” and “the worst environmental disaster in U.S. history.

American People Aren’t Stupid Enough to Buy Climate Change Narrative

Late last year, the name Jonathan Gruber became part of the public consciousness for his newly public declarations that Obamacare passed due to the “stupidity of the American voter.” While there are many cases one can cite affirming that most Americans don’t closely follow the political process, the campaign to sell the manmade climate change crisis narrative proves otherwise.

AFP PHOTO / HO/ IRANIAN SUPREME LEADER'S WEBSITE

The Geopolitics of Oil Go Round and Round

Many complicated factors contribute to the global price of a barrel of oil, but two of the leading components are supply and risk—and both have the potential to escalate in the days ahead.

California Oil Refinery (Paul Sakuma : Associated Press)

Oil and Gas Exports—One Policy Change, Many Benefits

“Businesses that sell to foreign markets put more people to work in high-quality jobs, offering more Americans the chance to earn a decent wage,” claimed the Obama administration’s Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker in a March 18 Wall Street Journal

Eni strengthens role in Egypt

Access to Mid-Atlantic Energy Resources Advances Long Term Energy Security

At the end of January, the Obama administration announced the next step in a long process that could result in the exploration and ultimate extraction of oil-and-gas resources of the U.S. mid-Atlantic—something the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) Governors Coalition supports. On March 30, the 60-day comment period ends. If everything goes well, we could see new American resources on the market in twenty years.

The solar industry is adding jobs 20 times faster than the overall U.S. economy

Solar Power Propaganda vs. the Real World

When a former “senior communications official at the White House” writes a blog post for U.S. News and World Report, you should be able to trust it. But when the author states that the Keystone pipeline would create only 19 weeks of temporary jobs, everything else he says must be suspect—including the claim that our “energy infrastructure will be 100 percent solar by 2030.”

What’s Up with Prices at the Pump?

After initially driving down the price of oil by increasing its production, which gave Americans a welcome drop in prices at the pump, could Saudi Arabia now be pushing them back up?