News & Events

Energy Economics Weekly Briefings

  • 12/19/17

    Where We Are On Oil And Gas Rig Counts And Production

    Written by: Ellen Hughes-Cromwick

    Key Takeaways: As oil prices plummeted in mid-2014, what followed was a significant reduction in the oil and gas rig counts across the major shale regions of the U.S. Rig counts faltered and finally troughed in early 2016, but production in the Permian region continued to grow as new rigs…

  • 12/14/17

    Tax Reform and Renewable Energy Investment

    Written by: Ellen Hughes-Cromwick

    Key Takeaways: Congressional leaders are reportedly close to concluding their Conference on tax legislation in order to produce a bill for final vote in the House and Senate. Both the Senate and House versions of the legislation include 100% upfront expensing for investment. In a perfect world, this should help…

  • 12/07/17

    Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Ruling

    Written by: Ellen Hughes-Cromwick

    Key Takeaways: The Department of Energy (DOE)’s Secretary Perry issued a letter to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) in September 2017 asking for a ruling on the electric grid reliability and resiliency. The objective of this proposed ruling is to ensure there is adequate grid capacity in the event…

  • 11/28/17

    Debt and Energy: Joints In The Tax Legislation

    Written by: Ellen Hughes-Cromwick

    Key Takeaways: With additional costs of debt financing (i.e., interest rates are difficult to forecast), this means that fiscal policy optionality is constrained. Why do we need such optionality? For many reasons, including the fact that the current economic expansion is getting long in the tooth at 8+ years old….

  • 11/07/17

    House Tax Reform Bill: Energy-Related Provisions

    Written by: Ellen Hughes-Cromwick

    Key Takeaways: The House Plan cuts corporate and income tax rates, allows for immediate expensing of business capital equipment purchases and rolls back the ability to deduct interest expenses for both businesses and consumers. It does, however, retain both the production and investment tax credits, albeit somewhat reduced, for certain…

  • 10/31/17

    It’s Complicated: Energy Use in E-Commerce versus Traditional Retailing Channels

    Written by: Ellen Hughes-Cromwick

    Key Takeaways: There is limited empirical research on the energy used in e-commerce sales as compared to traditional “brick-and-mortar”retail sales. Given the recent trend toward strong growth in online sales, these studies will be important in understanding the mix and magnitude of energy use associated with this transition. Much more…

  • 10/25/17

    The Future of Mobility : TE3 2017

    Written by: Ellen Hughes-Cromwick

    Key Takeaways: Our October 20 TE3 Conference included a panel of experts who discussed the future of mobility and the likely “slope of the curve.” How fast will change take place? There was a panel consensus that “this time is different,” i.e., that the technology has advanced which will allow…

  • 10/17/17

    India’s Energy Sector

    Written by: Ellen Hughes-Cromwick

    Key Takeaways: India’s economy is growing at one of the strongest rates as compared to any other emerging market. Energy demand growth also is vibrant — and spans from coal to oil and renewables. Vehicle sales are fueling growth in oil demand as consumers enter the take-off stage of economic…

  • 10/10/17

    Raw Materials Used To Make Lithium-Ion Batteries

    Written by: Ellen Hughes-Cromwick

    Key Takeaways: There are many components and raw materials that go into lithium-ion batteries to power electrified vehicles. Fluctuations in commodity prices can have an impact on battery costs and prices. Two commodities which may be pressure points are lithium and cobalt. In February, 2017, the U.S. Department of Energy…

  • 09/27/17

    Forecasting the Unforecastable

    Written by: Ellen Hughes-Cromwick

    Key Takeaways: Short-term and even long-term forecasts of oil demand and prices are an art, not a science. There is a range of potential outcomes supported by demand, supply, technology, and policy drivers. Even so, many analysts must recommend oil forecast assumptions for business planning. Oil demand and price forecasts…