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Economic impact study reveals true cost of WPO on Maine's economy
South Portland Working Waterfront Coalition
Flanked by dozens of hard-working Mainers whose jobs depend on our working waterfront, noted Maine economist Dr. Charles Lawton revealed the findings of an economic impact study he conducted to examine the role maritime commerce plays in our region's economy. Lawton was joined at the podium by Maine Energy Marketers Association President Jamie Py, Sprague Energy Vice President Burt Russell, AGC Maine CEO Matt Marks and AGC Maine President Beth Sturtevant.
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2013 Special Events
National UST Conference report
PMAA Regulatory Counsel Mark Morgan was in Denver, Colo. for the 24th National Tanks Conference and Expo. The annual UST conference, sponsored in part by the U.S. EPA, draws state and federal UST program officials from across the country to exchange ideas and attend seminars on a wide range of topics from compliance and enforcement issues to emerging trends in equipment and fuel formulations. This year, several of the well attended seminars and discussion groups looked into the compatibility of UST systems with alternative fuels, a growing concern for state regulators.
South Portland business owners voice concerns over tar sands
People who don't want tar sands oil brought into South Portland are getting support from many businesses in the city. They are hoping that together they can prevent the construction of infrastructure that would allow the Portland Montreal Pipeline Corporation to reverse the flow of one of its pipes and bring tar sands oil from Canada to tanker ships in Casco Bay.
South Portland waterfront zone change called a job killer
Portland Press Herald
Opponents of a waterfront zoning change going before city voters in November say its passage would lead to a shutdown of the wholesale oil industry in the port, the loss of 5,600 jobs and higher heating oil bills for homes throughout the state. The Working Waterfront Coalition released an economic impact report showing the potential losses in sales, tax revenues and jobs if the industry ceases operation in South Portland. One oil importer says it has already put a hold on an expansion project because of the possibility the ordinance could pass.
The economic implications of banning tar sands oil
The report finds that wholesale distribution of petroleum products in southern Maine would be disrupted, costing several thousand jobs, increasing energy prices and resulting in the loss of million of dollars in local and state taxes. The economic analysis was prepared for the Maine Energy Marketers Association by Dr. Charles Lawton, the chief economist at Planning Decisions, a Maine research and planning firm. Flanked by more than a hundred members of the Working Waterfront Coalition at a news conference in South Portland, Lawton said he was asked to begin his work with one question in mind. What would be the impact of closing the Sprague energy terminal in South Portland? The answer: Loss of $84 million in taxable property, $1.4 million in local taxes and 85 jobs, just for starters.
Awaiting the SEC's decision on transparency in the extractive industries
By Stefanie Heerwig
Whatever will happen in the next months will probably be a turning point in the history on transparency in the extractive industries. What I am talking about is Section 1504 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. The new law will require U.S.-listed oil, gas and mining companies to publish revenue payments to governments such as taxes, royalties and license fees on a country-by-country and project-by-project basis.
The American myth of cheap oil and gas
In recent years, U.S. business and political leaders have giddily talked of a "Saudi America" gurgling with domestic oil and gas. It's true that the U.S. now has access to abundant supplies of cheap domestic gas capable of transforming the U.S. economy. Too bad these same leaders are about to give away a vast chunk of North America's hydrocarbon production — and all the strategic advantages that go with it.
UMaine, PUC asked to release offshore wind proposal
Two environmental groups, the Portland Press Herald and Norwegian energy company Statoil are asking state regulators and the University of Maine to provide all or part of a 100-page university-led consortium's proposal for an offshore wind power project.
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New EPA power plant regs to have little impact in Maine
Bangor Daily News
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency unveiled new guidelines that limit the amount of carbon dioxide new coal- and natural gas-fired power plants will be allowed to emit. "Because New England generates a surplus of energy, there's not much in the way of new power plants being built in New England (and definitely not coal-fired ones), Dan Dolan, president of the New England Power Generators Association said. There are no new power plants in the works in Maine. And so, because the new regulations will only impact new power plants, the news has little impact on Maine, Dolan said.
Technology opens new opportunities for the Canadian oil and gas market
Bruce Edgelow is optimistic. The energy group vice president for ATB Financial says technology advances have opened new exploitation opportunities for the Canadian oil and gas market and have improved the industry's ability to monitor and respond to leaks, spills and other system issues. Selective access to capital and consolidation has presented challenges for producers, but it's an encouraging time in the basins, Edgelow says. In this interview with The Energy Report, he discusses the players he likes and why.
SEC presses oil companies on reserves
With crude prices hovering around $100 a barrel and the prices of other liquid fuels falling, the Securities and Exchanges Commission has requested U.S. oil companies to disclose how much of their reserves consist of oil rather than less valuable liquids like propane, the Wall Street Journal reports. Accordingly and after prodding from regulators, Billiton Ltd. and ConocoPhillips have joined Exxon Mobil Corp. and Anadarko PetroleumCorp. in agreeing to detail how much of their fuel is crude rather than liquids derived from natural gas.
Oil and gas drilling symposium to address risks in US exploration and production
Rock Hill Herald Online
Energi, a leading provider of risk management and insurance programs for the energy industry, announced the Oil & Gas Drilling Symposium, which will take place Oct. 23–24 following the conclusion of the 2013 Property Casualty Insurers Annual Meeting in Boston. The symposium will emphasize risk mitigation related to hydraulic fracturing and will be co-hosted by Aon Benfield and Grayling.
Gasoline on the ferry — Training ensures safety
The Working Waterfront
John Anders had barely organized his desk after taking over in mid-June as chief of the Maine State Ferry Service when an explosive problem landed on it — transporting gasoline in large quantities. It began with a routine U.S. Coast Guard inspection of the Capt. Henry Lee, the state ferry that runs from Bass Harbor to Swan's Island and Frenchboro. "It was brought to our attention that the crews needed to be in compliance with hazardous materials regulations," Anders said. Specifically, they needed to be trained to respond to mishaps with fuels like gasoline, diesel, LP gas and oil.
Swipe fee rules remain pending appeal
Convenience Store Decisions
The U.S. Federal Reserve's rules for debit card swipe fees are set to stay the same while the Fed appeals U.S. District Judge Richard Leon's July 31 ruling that the Fed didn't have the authority to set a 21 cent cap on debit card transactions. Both the Fed and retailers had asked the federal judge to keep the current rules in place pending the appeal.
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