Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz said the near-ban on U.S. crude oil exports is ripe for revisiting, comments that arrive as major producers including Exxon Mobil are pressing to relax limits imposed in the 1970s.
His remarks Thursday in New York, reported by Platts, were quite cautious. And Moniz noted that it’s not his department’s decision to make.
But the statements are nonetheless likely to fuel increasing industry calls for ending major restrictions created in the wake of the early-1970s Arab oil embargo.
“Those restrictions on exports were born, as was the Department of Energy and the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, on oil disruptions,” Moniz said at a forum hosted by Platts.
“There are lots of issues in the energy space that deserve some new analysis and examination in the context of what is now an energy world that is no longer like the 1970s,” Moniz said.
U.S. oil production is at its highest point in 25 years and the nation’s reliance on imports is falling. That has prompted export advocates to argue that it’s time to rethink U.S. laws and policies that only allow crude oil exports in very limited cases.
The U.S. currently exports a small amount of crude oil to Canada.
“We are not dealing with an era of scarcity, we are dealing with a situation of abundance,” Ken Cohen, Exxon’s vice president of public and government affairs, told The Wall Street Journal this week. “We need to rethink the regulatory scheme and the statutory scheme on the books.”
Moniz said that his department stands ready to provide technical analysis to the Commerce Department, which has jurisdiction over crude oil exports.
The oil industry is weighing an effort to challenge the ban by arguing that it violates international trade law.
What We're Following See More »
Donald Trump "nearly quintupled the monthly rent his presidential campaign pays for its headquarters at Trump Tower to $169,758 in July, when he was raising funds from donors, compared with March, when he was self-funding his campaign." A campaign spokesman "said the increased office space was needed to accommodate an anticipated increase in employees," but the campaign's paid staff has actually dipped by about 25 since March. The campaign has also paid his golf courses and restaurants about $260,000 since mid-May.
Donald Trump probably isn't taking seriously John Oliver's suggestion that he quit the race. But he has canceled or rescheduled rallies amid questions over his stance on immigration. Trump rescheduled a speech on the topic that he was set to give later this week. Plus, he's also nixed planned rallies in Oregon and Las Vegas this month.
Donald Trump's Fox News brain trust keeps growing. After it was revealed that former Fox chief Roger Ailes is informally advising Trump on debate preparation, host Sean Hannity admitted over the weekend that he's also advising Trump on "strategy and messaging." He told the New York Times: “I’m not hiding the fact that I want Donald Trump to be the next president of the United States. I never claimed to be a journalist.”
"Donald Trump's campaign and the Republican party will coordinate more closely going forward, with the GOP's top communicator and chief strategist Sean Spicer increasingly working out of Trump campaign headquarters, the campaign confirmed Sunday."
In a statement released Friday morning, the Trump campaign announced that Paul Manafort has resigned as campaign chairman. The move comes after fresh questions had been raised about Manafort's work in Russia and Ukraine, and Trump brought in Stephen Bannon "as a de facto demotion for Manafort."