Join me on the Energy Tweet Sheet

Readers: The following blog post was published in The Daily Beast today. Join the #EnergyTweetSheet discussion on Twitter and follow me @KenPCohen as I highlight some of the most interesting energy stories over the next week. – Ken

For the next week, I will be the host of The Daily Beast’s “Energy Tweet Sheet,” where I’ll be tweeting about energy news stories from around the world. You can follow me @KenPCohen to keep up with the latest, or join the discussion by tweeting the energy stories you’re reading to #EnergyTweetSheet.

To get started, I thought I’d share some of the interesting energy stories I’ve read in the past couple of days. Read on …

An oil production record in … North Dakota?
A recent Associated Press article reports that oil drillers in North Dakota have surpassed the record set last year for crude oil production, due to the oil-rich Bakken and Three Forks shale formations there. The state is nearing a milestone of a half-million barrels of oil a day; North Dakota is currently the fourth-largest producer of oil in the country but is nearing production amounts of Alaska and California. It’s also worth noting the jobs and economic activity created by this increasing oil production: Jobs supported by the petroleum industry more than doubled in North Dakota from 2005 to 2009, totaling more than 65,000 in 2009. The industry also tripled its overall economic impact to the state in recent years – from $4.2 billion in 2005 to $12.7 billion in 2009.

How to revive industries
Growing shale gas production in Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia is reviving several long-lost American industries, according to a recent Associated Press report. In Ohio, the production of natural gas is reviving the hard-hit steel industry with a new $650 million steel mill in Youngstown, Ohio, which will create 350 new jobs. Another $100 million upgrade to a steel pipe plant in Lorain, Ohio, will create another 100 jobs. Even a rail car manufacturer based in suburban St. Louis is benefitting – the shale industry is creating greater demand for freight cars. But the jobs don’t stop there: “For every manufacturing job there are between five and seven ancillary jobs created within the community that support those manufacturing jobs,” said Lorain Mayor Tony Krasienko.

Some New York residents cross the border for jobs … in Pennsylvania
I recently blogged about an interesting piece in the Ithaca (N.Y.) Journal where the state’s economic development director commented on a concerning pattern emerging in southern New York state: “The economy is stalled in most parts of upstate [New York],” he said. “Unemployment remains high. Local governments and school districts in the Southern Tier struggle to make budget cuts. Yet, every morning residents in the Binghamton and Elmira areas watch as hundreds of workers get in their trucks and cars, leave their houses, apartments and hotels, and cross the border to northern Pennsylvania to go to good jobs in the shale gas industry. What is wrong with this picture?”

I hope you find these items of interest. I’m looking forward to sharing more thoughts on energy as host of The Daily Beast’s Energy Tweet Sheet – join in and send me your thoughts as well.


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  1. steve segrest says:

    Ken, I have a simple question. For every gallon of ethanol produced, how much oil is displaced? Finding an answer appears to be very complicated, can you provide a good engineering answer? The confusion seems to be not with the BTU content of oil and ethanol, nor is it that it takes about 42 gallons of oil to produce 19 gallons of gasoline. What makes this difficult is that other fuel products result from the refining of oil to gasoline. Can you give it a shot to answer the question — of how much oil is displaced by ethanol use?

  2. steve segrest says:

    Ken, I have a simple question. For every gallon of ethanol produced, how much oil is displaced? Finding an answer appears to be very complicated, can you provide a good engineering answer? The confusion seems to be not with the BTU content of oil and ethanol, nor is it that it takes about 42 gallons of oil to produce 19 gallons of gasoline. What makes this difficult is that other fuel products result from the refining of oil to gasoline. Can you give it a shot to answer the question — of how much oil is displaced by ethanol use?