Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Ohio Energy Update

I was asked a question about two candidates for an Ohio Senate seat yesterday and as I was researching the two individuals in question, I came across something that I hadn't heard about and wanted to sahre with you all...

On March 30th of this year, Minority Whip John Adams introduced a bill that would allow the Director of Natural Resources to issue permits and make leases to take and remove natural gas and oil from under the bed of Lake Erie.

HB 110 was assigned to the Agriculture and Natural Resources committee where Democrats who control the chamber have let it sit.

I don't have a dollar figure to provide here, but I would imagine that the fees associated with granting permits and leases to do this sort of business might have an interesting effect on this state's bottom line. We're still having budget problems and once again we see Ohio House Democrats not bothering to even hear an idea that might help us out of the situation.

This bill had 31 co-sponsors. My question is this: We have more than 31 Republicans in the Ohio House, where are the rest of them? The good guys (and gals) are: Representatives Batchelder, Blessing, Jordan, Boose, Burke, Combs, Goodwin, Hall, Huffman, Martin, Morgan, Stebelton, Uecker, Wagner, Wachtmann, Daniels, Bubp, Grossman, Adams, R., Amstutz, Zehringer, Hackett, Balderson, Mecklenborg, Blair, McClain, Snitchler, Maag, Stautberg, Ruhl, and Sears.

Shannon Jones, Bill Coley, and Tim Derickson...where are you?

Church Wants to Drill for Natural Gas

The Dayton Daily News had a really interesting story about a church in Stow, Ohio that wants to drill for natural gas as a way to secure its financial future.

Of course, a couple of NIMBYs in the neighborhood are preventing this from happening.

I'll believe that we have a real energy crisis when those who claim they want us off foreign sources of energy will allow us to explore and exploit our own resources.


UPDATE: Shannon Jones responded on Facebook and I thought it would be smart to post her response here too:
Thanks for asking, Matt. I have been a long supporter of drilling on public lands. I typically don't co-sponsor much - especially when I don't serve on the committee that will hear the bill -- because you can't control how the bill gets changed. Often times it changes so much you don't recognize it and wouldn't have supported it to begin with. So you know, we were successful in getting the drilling language in the conference report of the budget. Sadly it was one of Governor Strickland's vetoes. Since he doesn't support it and the House Ds don't support it we won't get anything done on this issue. Ohio is full of natural resources -- we ought to be extracting them for use of the taxpayers. Speaking of energy, did you read the Riskind article in today's Dispatch on the Piketon plant? Check it out. This is another area where Obama and Strickland have failed us on energy policy. And jobs too. Sad.
I think this is the Riskind story she was referring to...and I'm glad that she brought that up because I was trying to decide if I should include that in this post. The Piketon plant is another in the long line of Ted Strickland failures.

UPDATE 2: In further research, I came across something that might have been a snag...
The federal Energy Policy Act of 2005 prohibits a federal or state permit or lease from being issued for new oil and gas slant, directional, or offshore drilling in or under one or more of the Great Lakes (42 USC § 15941). Thus, if enacted, the bill might conflict with federal law.
Of course, had the bill seen the light of day, we could have started an effort to get our Congressional delegation working on fixing it...

UPDATE 3: This is pretty interesting...
Matt, another angle to the Federal limitation is that the Feds have in effect "taken" the subsurface resources of the lakes, without any input from the Great Lakes states - who OWN the lake bottoms and everything below to the center of the earth.
If my emailer is going where I think he is, this might make for an interesting Tenth Amendment type case...

If memory serves, Michigan has been dreadful when it comes to supporting endeavors such as what is suggested in this bill. Canada, on the other hand...