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Current Issue Contents - October 2020

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As the political pundits frequently point out, U.S. presidential elections have rarely been defined by two candidates with such starkly different policy visions. In no area are those differences more pronounced than in domestic energy. What is the outlook for federal laws, regulations and policies affecting U.S. oil and gas development and production during the next four years? AOGR’s October issue turns to a pair of experts who understand that the big picture goes beyond rhetoric and political calculations to incorporate economic considerations and numerous practical realities. With in-depth analyses that delve far deeper than campaign talking points, the Election 2020 reports assess how President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden each would likely govern specific to key energy issues and administrative policy matters. October’s special sections open with The Producers: Success Stories, which profiles three innovative U.S. independent oil and gas companies that are winning big with new exploration and development projects. Then, Frac Focus: Monitoring Insights details how next-generation geochemical technology is giving Diamondback Energy invaluable new reservoir insights in the Permian Basin. Association news includes Official Convention Sections for AIPRO and INOGA. Cover and Election 2020 design by Amanda DeMoss, and in memory of Larry Lee. Special report images courtesy of Bison Oil & Gas II, and RevoChem LLC.

PERMIAN POWERHOUSE

COVER STORY: At stake in the 2020 presidential election is more than mere regulatory and economic policy differences, but indeed, to what degree that industry will be granted a license to operate. Sparked by growing partisan division over how the nation should respond to climate questions and fueled by increasingly strident demands from anti-fossil-fuel activists, the two major political parties–and their respective presidential candidates–are scripting America’s energy future in distinctively different terms that transcend the conventional realm of “energy policy.” No more is the debate constrained to practical discussions about safely supplying the affordable and reliable energy resources necessary to power an industrial society and preserve the American way of life. Instead, beliefs about energy have taken on near-religious qualities and invoke feelings of right versus wrong; good versus evil. Federal energy policy has morphed into blueprints for everything from social justice and racial equality to economic recovery from a global pandemic. America’s independent crude oil and natural gas industry is caught in the middle. | Special Q&A with Kevin Book and Jason Isaac

THE PRODUCERS: SUCCESS STORIES

  • Producers Notch Big Victories with New Discoveries and Development Projects | by Tim Beims
    U.S. Independents have a history of knocking it out of the ballpark in good times and bad. A number of small producers show that remains true, even as 2020 feeds the industry a steady diet of curveballs.

FRAC FOCUS: MONITORING INSIGHTS

  • Geochemical ‘Fingerprinting’ Characterizes Reservoirs in Midland Basin Study | by Douglas L. Hardman, Dave Cannon, Faye Liu, Jiang Wu and Muqing Jin
    Whether it relates to reservoir characterization, stacked-pay completion optimization or production allocation, high-resolution geochemical analysis technology offers quantitative, actionable information for smart field development decisions.

NEWS

  • Federal Legislation: House passes bills on alternative energy and infrastructure cybersecurity
  • Federal Regulations: EPA finalizes new procedures for guidance documents; Forest Service publishes rule on oil and gas development; Trump extends OCS leasing moratoria to North Carolina; BOEM plans to change financial assurance rule
  • State Regulations: California governor goes after production and consumption
  • In the Courts: Court sinks federal tax on crude exports; More lawsuits filed against regulatory rollbacks
  • New Leadership: TIPRO taps Hopkins at online meeting
  • In the Courts: Court slows EPA’s final rule amending 2016 methane NSPS
  • Natural Gas Markets: Morgan Stanley sees a likely path to strong winter gas prices
  • Industry Survey: Pandemic driving digital investments

OFFICIAL CONVENTION SECTIONS

  • AIPRO: Resilience and adaptability characterize AIPRO’s year
  • INOGA: Oil and gas regulatory rewrite drags on in Indiana

COLUMNS

  • Tech Connections
  • Washington Watch

View contents of previous issues here.