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Recent Projects

Viewing recent projects in Natural Resources
  • Hein Joins Experts to Discuss Oil-by-Rail

    Jayni Hein, our policy director, presented today at a national conference on oil-by-rail policies, “Oil Train Response 2015: Community Risks & Solutions,” in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

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  • Reconsidering Coal's Fair Market Value Cover

    Reconsidering Coal’s Fair Market Value

    The Social Costs of Coal Production and the Need for Fiscal Reform

    Coal mining on federal lands accounts for more than 40 percent of all coal produced in the United States. But outdated policies, longstanding loopholes, and prevalent environmental externalities keep American taxpayers from receiving their fair share of value from federal coal leases.

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  • Policy Integrity Weighs in on Federal Coal Program

    Jayni Hein, our policy director, recently participated in the Department of the Interior’s (DOI’s) inaugural listening session on the federal coal program. Hein provided recommendations for modernizing the fiscal terms of federal coal leases at this Washington D.C meeting, held on July 29th. DOI organized the event to solicit input from the public about how the the agency can best carry out its responsibility to ensure that American taxpayers receive a fair return on the coal resources managed by the federal government on their behalf. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell attended the listening session.

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  • Harmonizing Preservation and Production Cover

    Harmonizing Preservation and Production

    How Modernizing the Department of the Interior’s Fiscal Terms for Oil, Gas, and Coal Leases Can Ensure a Fair Return to the American Public

    Leasing federal lands for drilling and mining generates a huge amount of revenue for the United States, but the Department of the Interior, which oversees these leases, uses an antiquated fiscal system that deprives taxpayers of hundreds of millions of dollars. Our report analyzes how the fiscal terms for oil, gas, and coal leases could be modernized to ensure a fair return to the American public.

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  • Regulatory Report on Oil Dispersants

    Our new regulatory report offers guidance on how how the EPA can improve its cost-benefit analysis for a new proposed rule regulating the dispersants used to clean up oil spills and other major pollution events.

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  • Comments on New Offshore Leasing Plan

    Policy Integrity recently filed public comments on the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management’s (BOEM’s) new offshore leasing proposal, suggesting that the agency update its use of “option value” to improve its valuation of offshore resources.

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  • Court Rules on Offshore Leasing Lawsuit

    Policy Integrity senior advisor Michael Livermore represented the plaintiff in Center for Sustainable Economy v. Jewell, a lawsuit challenging the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management’s (BOEM’s) 2012-2017 leasing plan for the Gulf of Mexico and the Alaskan coast. The Center for Sustainable Economy (CSE) argued that incomplete and flawed economic analysis leads the government to sell resource leases too quickly and too cheaply, potentially costing the American public billions of dollars and leading to high-risk drilling. Today, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit ruled against CSE in the case. However, part of the ruling could lead to major changes in how the government values the natural resources it leases.

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  • Victory at Sea: New Offshore Leasing Program Begins to Adopt Policy Integrity Recommendations

    Policy Integrity’s multi-year effort to make the government account for “option value” in its natural resource leasing decisions has begun to pay off. In its new proposal for offshore oil and gas leasing from 2017-2022, the Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) devotes 12 pages to option value and related resource valuation concepts, which will now be considered in leasing decisions. Much of this language closely resembles the arguments Policy Integrity has made to the agency repeatedly since 2009.

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  • Capturing Value Cover

    Capturing Value

    Science and Strategies to Curb Methane Emissions from the Oil and Natural Gas Sector

    Methane, the primary component of natural gas, is a potent climate pollutant up to 86 times more powerful than carbon dioxide on a 20-year timeframe. Currently the United States loses at least 1 to 3 percent of its total natural gas production each year when methane is leaked or vented to the atmosphere. Federal regulations could reduce methane emissions by up to 50 percent at little or no net cost, using available technologies.

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  • Oil Train Safety - Public Comments

    Driven by growth in the production of oil in the U.S. and Canada, there has been a significant increase in rail transportation of crude oil over the past five years, with a corresponding increase in the number of accidents. Many oil trains pass through sensitive environmental habitats and densely populated areas, and even share track with commuter trains in some regions.

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