Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Gas Intrudes on "Oil Day" at CERAWeek Conference

At the annual CERAWeek energy conference in Houston, oil has long been king.  The first day is dedicated to oil with gas and power being relegated to later days of the conference.  The Financial Times pointed out that at this week's conference, natural gas intruded on oil's day

The occasion for the intrusion was a speech by Jim Mulva, CEO of ConocoPhillips called "Natural Gas - The Gift," which touted gas as not just a "bridge fuel" but a major component of our nation's energy future.  Mulva's presentation was in some contrast to Energy Secretary Stephen Chu's speech in which Chu praised natural gas as a bridge fuel towards renewable fuel sources.  Chu also acknowledged that it will be very hard to replace oil as a transportation fuel because of its physical advantages such as energy density and ease of transport.

Many gas fans complain about remarks by Secretary Chu, but I'm relatively pleased with his progression from being "agnostic" about the best energy sources for our future to at least singing the praises of natural gas.  We quickly forget that a very important role of the government in developing policy and helping fund development of our nation's energy future is walking the fine line between supporting the best fuels and technologies and picking the winners.  The latter is a definite no-no.

No comments: