Columbia Energy Exchange: Jay Faison

With the devastation from hurricanes Harvey and Irma, the repercussions of climate change are getting more attention, especially the...

On climate, candy maker Mars not so quiet

For a company famously tight-lipped when it comes to most of its business operations, Mars is incredibly outspoken regarding...

Columbia Energy Journalism Initiative Class of 2017

I’m proud to be the director of the Columbia Energy Journalism Initiative, a program at the Columbia University Center...

Columbia Energy Exchange: Barry Perry

Barry Perry is a chief executive from a remote region of Canada whose company is gradually becoming a major...

Stable outlook for U.S. oil producers at $45 a barrel

Most U.S. oil companies will be able to produce more oil while reducing operating costs at prices of $45...
Blog, Podcast
Columbia Energy Exchange: Jay Faison
Blog, Climate, Sustainable Energy
On climate, candy maker Mars not so quiet
Journalism
Columbia Energy Journalism Initiative Class of 2017
Electricity, Infrastructure, Podcast
Columbia Energy Exchange: Barry Perry
Blog, Oil, Prices
Stable outlook for U.S. oil producers at $45 a barrel

About Bill Loveless

An award-winning energy journalist known for his compelling news interviews in print and on the air. A thought-provoking moderator of high-level public events addressing leading energy and environmental issues. An insider with extensive connections with prominent lawmakers, policymakers and business executives. A perceptive writer providing critical insight on issues.

Blog, Podcast

Columbia Energy Exchange: Jay Faison

With the devastation from hurricanes Harvey and Irma, the repercussions of climate change are getting more attention, especially the extent to which global warming may intensify the impact of storms. From a policy standpoint, the question is whether climate change will receive broader consideration in Washington as hurricanes, wild fires and other natural calamities wreak havoc in the U.S. and neighboring nations. In the latest Columbia Energy Exchange podcast, I talk with Jay Faison, the founder and CEO of the ClearPath Foundation, an organization dedicated to promoting conservative support for clean energy. Granted, our conversation took place before Harvey and Irma. But even then, Jay claimed growing interest among Republicans in weighing the implications of climate change and eyeing solutions. “We’ve got 20, 30 Republicans out on different caucuses stating the problem,” he told me. “I can tell you behind…

Continue reading
Blog, Climate, Sustainable Energy

On climate, candy maker Mars not so quiet

For a company famously tight-lipped when it comes to most of its business operations, Mars is incredibly outspoken regarding matters like climate change. That’s become even more evident as the company launches a $1 billion plan called “Sustainable in a Generation” which expands on goals set previously by the maker of M&M’s, Snickers and other popular food brands. “Mars has been in business for four generations and intends to be for the next four generations,” Grant Reid, the CEO of the family-owned business with $33 billion in annual net sales and operations in more than 80 countries, said Sept. 5 in announcing the new initiative. But he added, “The only way that will happen is if we do things differently to ensure that the planet is healthy and all people in our extended supply chains have the opportunity to thrive.”…

Continue reading
Journalism

Columbia Energy Journalism Initiative Class of 2017

I’m proud to be the director of the Columbia Energy Journalism Initiative, a program at the Columbia University Center on Global Energy Policy that acquaints up-and-coming energy journalists with disciplines associated with the field, such as finance, markets, policy and technology. Funded by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation and others, the program hosted 19 journalists in New York in June, out of more than 80 who applied. My thanks to Jason Bordoff, the founding director of the Center on Global Energy Policy, and his staff for including me in this ambitious program. Stay tuned for a new edition in 2018!

Continue reading
Electricity, Infrastructure, Podcast

Columbia Energy Exchange: Barry Perry

Barry Perry is a chief executive from a remote region of Canada whose company is gradually becoming a major player in North America’s electric power industry. We sat down recently for a discussion on the Columbia Energy Exchange podcast. From St. John’s, Newfoundland, the oldest city in North America, Perry runs Fortis Inc., the largest investor-owned utility in Canada. Since 2004, the company’s assets in Canada, the U.S. and the Caribbean have grown ten-fold to $48 billion. Fortis’ most recent acquisition, one that really put it on the map in the U.S., was ITC, the biggest electric transmission company in America, at a price of $11.3 billion. We visited with each other during one of his visits to Washington to talk about the electric and natural gas business in the U.S. and Canada, the different energy policies of the two…

Continue reading
Blog, Oil, Prices

Stable outlook for U.S. oil producers at $45 a barrel

Most U.S. oil companies will be able to produce more oil while reducing operating costs at prices of $45 a barrel or so, Fitch Ratings said July 19. While the price for West Texas Intermediate, the U.S. benchmark for crude oil, has fallen from a 2017 high of $54.45 on February 23, producers with solid credit ratings can compensate for the lower price now through further gains in efficiency and lower costs per barrel, Fitch said. WTI closed at $46.02 on July 18. “Most U.S. (exploration and production) companies will continue to see production profile gains and lower costs per barrel of oil equivalent through a combination of reduced drilling days, improved well bore placement, expanded multi-well pad drilling, longer laterals and higher intensity completions, which should help offset market price pressures,” Dino Kritikos, senior director for U.S. Corporates at…

Continue reading
Podcast, Policy

Columbia Energy Exchange: Bill Richardson

Few people in public service can tote up the career resume of Bill Richardson, especially when it comes to energy policy. So, I thought it just made sense to invite him on the Columbia Energy Exchange podcast to discuss what he thinks of the Trump administration and its approach to energy policy. Richardson’s 40 years of experience include stints as a member of the House of Representatives from New Mexico, U.S. ambassador to the U.N. and energy secretary during the Clinton administration, and governor of New Mexico. He’s also been a Democratic candidate for president and the negotiator of difficult talks with North Korea, Cuba, Iraq and Sudan that resulted in the release of hostages and American servicemen. Oh, and need I mention his four nominations for the Nobel Peace Prize and his three books, including one called “How to…

Continue reading
Corporations, Energy, Podcast

Columbia Energy Exchange: Centrica CEO Iain Conn

Disruption is widespread in energy industries around the world today, and success or failure in dealing with that change often depends on who’s running a company. In this episode of the “Columbia Energy Exchange,” I talk with Iain Conn, the chief executive of  Centrica, a multi-national company based in the United Kingdom, whose roots go back as far as 1812. Conn, who joined Centrica in 2015 after spending 29 years at the oil major BP, is repositioning Centrica from exploration and production and central power generation to what he calls “customer-facing” businesses, a move he says makes sense given fluctuations taking place in energy markets. We talked about that transformation during one of his visits to Washington as well as about world oil markets, Brexit, climate change and Donald Trump.      

Continue reading
Article, Climate, Electricity

Coal comeback unlikely after Paris climate pact withdrawal: utility CEO

From USA TODAY President Trump once again promised to revive the U.S. coal industry when he announced his intention to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris climate agreement. But that reversal seems as unlikely as ever as electric power producers, the biggest consumers of coal in the U.S., continue to shift to natural gas and renewable energy sources like solar and wind power. In 2016, natural gas became the leading fuel for U.S. electricity generation for the first time, responsible for 33.8% of the output, compared with 30.4% for coal, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Nick Akins, the CEO of American Electric Power, one of the largest utilities in the U.S., says the preference for gas, renewables and energy efficiency, will only grow in response to increasing demands from shareholders and customers for cleaner energy, regardless of changes in…

Continue reading
Blog, Climate, Sustainable Energy

With void in Washington, energy policy shifts to states

As the late U.S. House Speaker Tip O’Neill said, “All politics is local,” and that pertains to energy as much as any issue. Take the Metro section in the May 17 Washington Post where three stories remind us that battles over climate change are increasingly shifting from Washington to the states and local communities, as the Trump administration puts the kibosh on Obama-era environmental policies. The lead story reports that Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D) has ordered state officials to develop regulations to reduce carbon emissions from power plants and encourage solar and other clean energy sources. McAuliffe wants the plan, which is consistent with the Obama strategy for climate change and energy, implemented by the time he leaves office in January, a tall order given the resistance he will face from the Republican-controlled legislature in Virginia. Nonetheless, his bid…

Continue reading
Energy, Podcast, Policy

Columbia Energy Exchange: Rep. Fred Upton

Amid the political upheaval in Washington, is there an opportunity to legislate on something relatively routine but still critical to the U.S. like energy policy? The top energy lawmaker in the U.S. House, Fred Upton, says “yes.” Now, the Michigan Republican is an optimist by nature, noting, for example, “I’m a Cubs fan!” And he finds reason for hope when it comes to energy legislation, recalling bills on pipeline safety and other energy measures that he initiated and former President Obama signed. Perhaps the best opportunity for energy action on Capitol Hill is promoting infrastructure, especially steps to further protect electricity transmission and oil and natural gas pipelines from cyber attacks, he tells me in this edition of the “Columbia Energy Exchange” podcast. And Upton, the chairman of the House Energy Subcommittee, isn’t necessarily toeing the line when it comes…

Continue reading

Popular posts

Columbia Energy Exchange: Kevin Cramer

During his campaign for President of the United States, one of the many advisors Donald Trump turned to on energy issues was Kevin Cramer, a Republican member of the U.S....