The annual State of the Union address has for decades been used by Presidents as an opportunity to talk about new schemes for “energy independence.” On February 5, Pres. Trump was able to sing a very different tune.
People forget, but America did not become a net importer of oil until 1970. By the late 1970s, we were at the mercy of Middle Eastern countries who could wreck our economy by shutting down our access to oil markets. Over the past few years, America has completely reversed itself again to reach oil and gas production levels never seen before. The resurgence has been going on since around 2008, but Pres. Trump was eager to take some credit. He said in his 2019 State of the Union speech Tuesday that:
we have unleashed a revolution in American energy — the United States is now the number one producer of oil and natural gas anywhere in the world. And now, for the first time in 65 years, we are a net exporter of energy.
The speech was as notable for what Pres. Trump did not mention. After making reviving the coal industry a central theme of his campaign, he touted coal in his State of the Union speech last year. He talked about ending the war on coal and how America was exporting more coal than ever. This year, he did not mention coal at all.
2018 was a particularly bad year for coal even with a more friendly regulatory environment. The harsh reality is that the market, both in America and overseas, is demanding cleaner natural gas and turning away from coal. Half the coal plants operating in America in 2008 were closed by the end of 2017. Pres. Trump’s regulatory changes have not changed the downward trajectory much.
On the gas side, much of the boom in production has come from Appalachia and Cimmaron Land has been leading the way helping producers secure rights in the region. Call us at (412) 212-7517 for more information on available opportunities.