Fed govt: No, Nevada, you cannot have oil-and-gas prosperity

posted at 6:51 pm on October 28, 2013 by Erika Johnsen

President Obama is usually quite pleased to credit the upsurge in oil-and-gas production and the downswing in oil imports that has been happening throughout his presidency as the direct result of his administration’s policies, and they would prefer that you not investigate the matter too closely and just trust that his support of renewables and biofuels and what have you combined with his prudent, keen sense of know-how for creating just enough traditional energy jobs is the source of the economic growth supporting his otherwise stagnant economic recovery.

If you were to investigate more thoroughly, however, you would quickly notice that the types of energy booms resulting in jobs and prosperity that we’re seeing in North Dakota, Texas, and etcetera are largely due to the auspices of oil-and-gas companies operating on state and private lands. The Obama administration will loudly and gladly direct your attention to the projects for fast-tracking giant wind and solar projects on public lands (the first of which took place last week and was a complete flop), but they are conspicuously less vocal about the ways in which they’re deliberately slowing down oil-and-gas permitting on public lands.

An excellent example from the home state of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, via the Las-Vegas Review Journal about a swath of land about 200 miles north of Las Vegas:

Here, in 1984, the Grant Canyon oil-field wells were first drilled. For nearly 10 years, before tapering off in the mid-1990s, the Grant wells produced about 110,000 barrels of oil per month. During these years, the Grant wells were the most productive onshore wells in the 48 contiguous states. Through most of the 1980s, in this section of rural Nye County, these few wells generated prosperity.

Despite this success, however, Nevada oil exploration has been slow and sporadic. In part this was because of a technological inability to identify and economically extract oil reserves. The rock formation beneath Railroad Valley and much of Eastern Nevada, known as the Chainman Shale, contains petroleum, but until recently the technology to extract it did not exist.

In 1995, the U.S. Geological Survey estimated that the Chainman Shale formation could contain as much as 383 million barrels of undiscovered oil, as well as 242 billion cubic feet of natural gas. Ten years later, using more sophisticated modeling techniques, the USGS. upgraded that estimate to 1.598 billion barrels of oil and 1.836 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.

In other words, Eastern Nevada could be sitting on one of the most energy-rich rock formations in the entire world. Around the time of the updated estimate, one oil developer told Las Vegas reporters, “You have the richest largest organic mature rock source anyplace in the world except Saudi Arabia or Kuwait. … There is no doubt, I can assure you 100 percent, you are sitting on some of the greatest wealth in this country and the world.”

The only major obstacle to this potential boon? You guessed it: The federal government owns and controls most of Nevada, and while they will occasionally auction of some mineral rights and approve some drilling permits, they have steadily blocked the type of large-scale development we’re seeing elsewhere in the country. Unfortunately for Nevadans and Americans in general, that energy development could provide, according to one study’s estimates, more than 21,000 jobs and $100 million in revenue for Nevada — i.e., exactly the type of economic growth of which we’re sorely in need.


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

0bama is bankrupting this once great nation…

OmahaConservative on October 28, 2013 at 6:54 PM

HEY HARRY ! ………. How ’bout a comment on this?

I’m sure your constituents would like to know just where you stand on this issue …..

listens2glenn on October 28, 2013 at 6:57 PM

The only major obstacle to this potential boon? You guessed it: The federal government owns and controls most of Nevada,

…just as they ‘own’ 2/3 of Alaska.

8starsnorth on October 28, 2013 at 6:59 PM

I’m outraged!
ok, next.

tdarrington on October 28, 2013 at 7:00 PM

that energy development could provide, according to one study’s estimates, more than 21,000 jobs and $100 million in revenue for Nevada — i.e., exactly the type of economic growth of which we’re sorely in need.

Yeah, but those are temporary jobs. They’ll be gone 100 years from now after all that oil and gas has been removed.

/sarc

xblade on October 28, 2013 at 7:01 PM

Yeah, but it’ll take 10 years to develop those fields. Scientists have been telling us for 50 years that fusion power is only 20 years away so we should have that any day now. Then oil will be obsolete.

tdarrington on October 28, 2013 at 7:05 PM

The only major obstacle to this potential boon? You guessed it: The federal government owns and controls most of Nevada, and while they will occasionally auction of some mineral rights and approve some drilling permits, they have steadily blocked the type of large-scale development we’re seeing elsewhere in the country.

The real obstacle is that Harry Reid can’t figure out a way to get a kickback on this.

rbj on October 28, 2013 at 7:05 PM

This simply means that Reid hasn’t figured out how to sell this land to himself, without raising hell. But once a solution to this dilemma is found expect a sale of some tracts of land, some “consortium” will include Reid and his family somehow.

riddick on October 28, 2013 at 7:05 PM

The real obstacle is that Harry Reid can’t figure out a way to get a kickback on this.

rbj on October 28, 2013 at 7:05 PM

I heard he is pretty good at land deals.

tdarrington on October 28, 2013 at 7:08 PM

Give these lands back to the States! (before China takes them for the money that we owe them.)

SailorMark on October 28, 2013 at 7:13 PM

Too bad Harry doesn’t own any land in that area. Otherwise I’m sure he’d get his pal King Barack to ‘fast track’ development in that area.

Too bad Nevada. You elected an empty suit to match the one currently in the White House.

Maybe you can open up a new business, like long-term storage of nuclear waste.

GarandFan on October 28, 2013 at 7:15 PM

We need Harry Reid to visit one of Fredo Corleone’s brothels.

Paging Tom Hagen.

BuckeyeSam on October 28, 2013 at 7:15 PM

HEY HARRY ! ………. How ’bout a comment on this?

I’m sure your constituents would like to know just where you stand on this issue …..

listens2glenn on October 28, 2013 at 6:57 PM

The mo…er…casino bosses are against it – it would either cut into their power or represent too much of an initial “investment” to get control. Therefore, Dingy Harry is against it.

Steve Eggleston on October 28, 2013 at 7:18 PM

I heard he is pretty good at land deals.

tdarrington on October 28, 2013 at 7:08 PM

The land will stay government owned. An oil & gas company needs to take Harry on as a silent partner, where he doesn’t have to do a buy in. And then hire his kids. Leases will magically be granted to that company, based upon “its track record of proven environmental responsibility.”

rbj on October 28, 2013 at 7:27 PM

Harry Reid works for OPEC.

lilium479 on October 28, 2013 at 7:36 PM

HEY HARRY ! ………. How ’bout a comment on this?

listens2glenn on October 28, 2013 at 6:57 PM

“Oil makes us sick. It’s global warming. It’s ruining our country. It’s ruining our world.” -Harry Reid

Um, btw, there’s been no global warming for at least 15 years, as per The Economist: “The mismatch between rising greenhouse-gas emissions and not-rising temperatures [15 year temperature stall] is among the biggest puzzles in climate science just now.” http://www.economist.com/news/science-and-technology/21574461-climate-may-be-heating-up-less-response-greenhouse-gas-emissions

In the longer term, with the leftist activist Michael Mann’s hockey stick debunked, we see that that there’s nothing unusual about current temperatures (many recent periods, as the Medieval Warm Period, were warmer), and the mild 20th century warming was a natural period where we were recovering from the Little Ice Age, which the hockey stick had also suppressed.

Finally, there’s actually no empirical evidence that CO2 affects climate level temperatures, and this is contrary to the previous (now retracted) claims of the ipcc and Al Gore (never retracted). See Al Gore’s false and disingenuous deceptive claims about CO2 (from his movie) exposed in this key 3 minute video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WK_WyvfcJyg&CO2Lag

anotherJoe on October 28, 2013 at 7:37 PM

How much money from opec flowing to the Marxist and his fellow travelers is playing a part in preventing this oil from being extracted?

bgibbs1000 on October 28, 2013 at 7:37 PM

Obama, and all the dem bosses want all the fed oil and gas money, so once the nationalization is done all lands will be available.

tim c on October 28, 2013 at 7:40 PM

They will turn us all into beggars because we’ll be easier to please.

tmitsss on October 28, 2013 at 7:57 PM

Way past time for the states to “evict” the federal government from the lands that rightfully belong to the state. Let them keep the national parks and monuments, but take back all the BLM lands and national forests. The federal government is the WORST caretaker in history. The states actually have a vested interest, and will do a much better job of managing these lands for multiple uses as determined by their duly elected legislatures.

djtnt on October 28, 2013 at 8:06 PM

We need Harry Reid to visit one of Fredo Corleone’s brothels.

Paging Tom Hagen.

BuckeyeSam on October 28, 2013 at 7:15 PM

In DeNiro and Stone’s Ca$ino, the Harry Reid character was played by Dick Smothers, as the Chairman of the Nevada Gaming Commission.

slickwillie2001 on October 28, 2013 at 8:16 PM

Way past time for the states to “evict” the federal government from the lands that rightfully belong to the state. Let them keep the national parks and monuments, but take back all the BLM lands and national forests. The federal government is the WORST caretaker in history. The states actually have a vested interest, and will do a much better job of managing these lands for multiple uses as determined by their duly elected legislatures.

djtnt on October 28, 2013 at 8:06 PM

Just to add, it’s really shabby treatment of the Western states. Older states don’t have the burden of huge tracts of federal lands to contend with.

slickwillie2001 on October 28, 2013 at 8:18 PM

As a native Texan…This just makes me shake my head

workingclass artist on October 28, 2013 at 8:24 PM

A politician no more creates jobs than a mule creates new mules. Politicians redistribute other people’s property. Qua Dr. Evil, it’s what they do.

It’s all they do.

A politician creates or expands an existing bureaucracy. He panders to the make-workers therein employed by using the coercive power of the state to increase their wages or their benefits. In this way, he shifts resources – other people’s resources. But he does not create anything. He takes from the creators – without whom he’d have nothing to redistribute. It’s a zero sum game. For every winner, there is always a loser. Predation, nothing more.

In the second place, since when did it become the job (accepting the false premise for discussion’s sake) of elected officials to create jobs? Err. Pardon me – but I thought we lived in a constitutional republic, not a bad rehash of Mussolini’s Italy. In a constitutional republic, the job of elected officials is (so we were once told) to make sure people’s rights are protected. That the provisions within the Constitution are preserved and protected to the best of one’s ability.

I’ve read the Constitution quite closely more than a couple of times and for the life of me, I cannot find a single reference to “job creation” anywhere. I suppose it has emanated from penumbras. Or perhaps it is implied . . .

Whatever its source, it makes the bile rise in my throat.

Politicians today have become contestants for the role of paterfamilias – a kind of Santa-Claus-meets-Stalin who knows what’s best for you – and you’d better damn well do as he says.

The campaign slogan is “Putting Jobs First.” No comment as to where they puts your rights. Lots of chatter about “investing” – that is, stealing other people’s money to be used in ways they deem more pressing. Ditto “incentives” for (favored/connected) businesses with (to use Ayn Rand’s excellent term) pull.

Virtually all politicos, speaks in the plural. It sounds better, you see. Instead of “I will take your money to finance the education of your neighbor’s kid,” it is: “We will invest in our childrens’ future.” No one bothers to ask who “we” is, of course. And “our” children? I guess I never realized I’d had any. Thought they were yours.

Of course, the opposition is no better – because of course it is not opposition. It is echo.

roflmmfao

donabernathy on October 28, 2013 at 8:27 PM

Yeah, but those are temporary jobs. They’ll be gone 100 years from now after all that oil and gas has been removed.
/sarc
xblade on October 28, 2013 at 7:01 PM

And how long are those renewable energy jobs being created lasting?

phatfawzi on October 28, 2013 at 8:44 PM

Why are we just now hearing about this? Why aren’t opposing politicians using this to their advantage? Just go straight to the people and promise them millions of dollars!

Vince on October 28, 2013 at 8:46 PM

donabernathy on October 28, 2013 at 8:27 PM

What are you babbling about? A politician should not get in the way of job creation.

Vince on October 28, 2013 at 8:50 PM

0bama is bankrupting this once great nation…

OmahaConservative on October 28, 2013 at 6:54 PM

Exactly. I just started a new job this morning. Same industry oil/nat gas. My wages are now less than they were in 1988. A new discovery would be wonderful.

Fred

jrsrigmvr on October 28, 2013 at 8:57 PM

Nevada doesn’t need more jobs. They just need their illegal aliens legalized.

Wigglesworth on October 28, 2013 at 9:12 PM

The Saudis don’t like Obama’s foreign policy, but they love his domestic policies.

Wigglesworth on October 28, 2013 at 9:13 PM

THESE DESTRUCTIVE MORONS MUST GO.

ParisParamus on October 28, 2013 at 10:00 PM

Sad part is… that federal land ownership is illegal per the US Constitution.

Article I Section 8 Clause 17: “To exercise exclusive Legislation in all Cases whatsoever, over such District (not exceeding ten Miles square) as may, by Cession of particular States, and the acceptance of Congress, become the Seat of the Government of the United States, and to exercise like Authority over all Places purchased by the Consent of the Legislature of the State in which the Same shall be, for the Erection of Forts, Magazines, Arsenals, dock-Yards, and other needful Buildings; And”

Unless they intend to cover the Eastern half of Nevada in a giant set of buildings, the land ownership by the federal government is in violation of the US Constitution.

dominigan on October 28, 2013 at 10:06 PM

And how long are those renewable energy jobs being created lasting?

phatfawzi on October 28, 2013 at 8:44 PM

Well, forever, of course! After all, they are “renewable”!

/

climbnjump on October 28, 2013 at 10:14 PM

And how long are those renewable energy jobs being created lasting?

phatfawzi on October 28, 2013 at 8:44 PM

They’re renewable…so they last F.O.R.E.V.E.R.

/s/

Solaratov on October 28, 2013 at 10:18 PM

Nevada doesn’t need more jobs. They just need their illegal aliens legalized.

Wigglesworth on October 28, 2013 at 9:12 PM

After moving here last year I am more than surprised adn appalled at so called local “conservatives” trying to argue that Sandoval is a “Republican/conservative” and Angle was a worst choice than Reid. Mind boggling, in more ways than one.

riddick on October 28, 2013 at 11:06 PM

Nevada doesn’t need more jobs. They just need their illegal aliens legalized.

Wigglesworth on October 28, 2013 at 9:12 PM

Sandoval and GOP are already on it, its just a matter of time. Illegals, same as in CA now, will be able to get a driver license.

That’s just Step 1. In almost 2 years of living here I have yet to hear of ICE raiding unions, which openly employ illegals and FORCE them TO VOTE.

Time to look at TX.

riddick on October 28, 2013 at 11:10 PM

Yeah, but it’ll take 10 years to develop those fields. Scientists have been telling us for 50 years that fusion power is only 20 years away so we should have that any day now. Then oil will be obsolete.

tdarrington on October 28, 2013 at 7:05 PM

…So the Obama Maladministration, rather than waiting on oil to become obsolete, has elected to champion “wind power,” which is obsolete right now!!!

landlines on October 29, 2013 at 12:27 AM

A major stumbling block to drilling into tight shale oil formations, which Nevada has plenty of, is depth and cost. $100 per barrel oil is not enough to cover the cost to drill.

Yes there is a problem with conventional drilling. Which company is going to develop a few acre field on private land when the vast majority of a particular reservoir is under BLM land with all of the associated costly red tape involved, just to get a maybe.

Kermit on October 29, 2013 at 8:16 AM

and etcetera

?

Akzed on October 29, 2013 at 9:19 AM

Unfortunately for Nevadans and Americans in general, that energy development could provide, according to one study’s estimates, more than 21,000 jobs and $100 million in revenue for Nevada — i.e., exactly the type of economic growth of which we’re sorely in need.

What’s unfortunate about that?

Akzed on October 29, 2013 at 9:22 AM

Take that, Harry Reid!

RebeccaH on October 29, 2013 at 1:25 PM