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Make hay while sun shines
by Chip Latcham
Apr 09, 2014 | 16 views | 0 0 comments | 1 1 recommendations | email to a friend | print
United States energy imports were reported at a 26-year low, according to the lead story’s headline in last Sunday’s San Antonio Express-News Business section.

Growth in the production of oil and natural gas, caused in large part by the explosion in the Eagle Ford Shale play, has pushed out the imports and driven most of the decline, according to the Energy Information Administration.

Staff writer Vicki Vaughan noted that last year’s U.S. energy imports totaled 12.7 quadrillion British thermal units, and the last time they came near that amount was in 1987, when they reached 11.6 quadrillion Btu.

An energy economist at the University of Houston said, “We haven’t seen anything like this in oil – ever.” He added the U.S. has “replaced the imported oil through conservation and increased domestic production.”

A related story pointed out that the San Antonio region has more places opening in the coming months offering compressed natural gas fueling stations for passenger cars and fleet trucks.

Industry analysts believe that this trend will grow and expand. Currently, there’s a national glut of natural gas and low prices. In other words, there’s plenty of supply and a tremendous opportunity for the energy industry to meet the demand, provided there is an increase.

“Hopefully, these new fueling stations provide some (momentum), because it does start with the infrastructure,” one analyst said.

It seems only logical from a business perspective, especially in this region. One often witnesses numerous wells flaring off gas when traveling at night.

From what we have heard, if the price of natural gas climbs, many rigs will move farther south and Bee County will play a larger role in the Eagle Ford boom.

Wouldn’t it make sense to produce more CNG, power more of our vehicles on that abundant commodity and thumb our noses at OPEC and other oil-producing nations such as Venezuela, Russia and Iran that would love to do America harm?
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