CEA Newsletter
Issue 29

Message from CEA President David Holt

Last month marked the first anniversary of the withdrawal from the 18-year old presidential moratorium on domestic offshore energy production by President Bush. Though the lifting of the offshore oil & gas drilling ban was a momentous decision, we are still no closer to accessing our vital offshore energy reserves than we were last July. We must continue to work toward a national energy policy that fully leverages America’s abundant offshore energy resources into new jobs, revenue and security for American energy consumers.

As we have often said before – while expanding the use of alternative energy through greater development of wind, solar, nuclear and other energy sources is the ultimate goal, we need to ensure that access to our abundant oil and natural gas resources is achieved as we continue to build that bridge to the future. Further, we have to guarantee that these energy resources are secure and affordable if we have any hope of seeing the national economy rebound.

By curbing our demand, increasing our supplies, especially from conventional energy resources along our coasts, we can reduce our dependence on foreign and unstable regions of the world to keep our economy moving. American families and small businesses deserve policies from the federal government that will actually deliver affordable, efficient and reliable energy. Opening up our offshore areas for responsible energy development is a step in that direction, and Consumer Energy Alliance is proud to tell our federal government that we support offshore oil & gas drilling, as well as offshore alternative energy development.

Please join our efforts and tell the Administration that you support sensible energy production off of our coasts too (click here to send in a letter).

David Holt

Support U.S. Offshore Oil & Gas Development!
A significant domestic supply of energy can be safely and efficiently found right here off of America’s shores. The federal government currently administers the considerable energy resources contained in our offshore waters and wants to hear from you about offshore oil & gas and alternative energy development.

Opposition to offshore energy development is mounting. We need you to let Washington know you support reasonable access to America’s offshore energy resources. Send in your comments today!

Support Development of Alaska’s Offshore Oil & Gas Resources!
At a time when the American public is crying out for more domestic energy, Alaska has enormous untapped oil and gas potential, especially in its offshore areas. The waters off Alaska’s coasts hold about 27 billion barrels of oil and 132 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, estimates the federal government.

To begin producing energy from these resource basins, the federal government must take action. Join us in our effort as we build public support for offshore minerals exploration and development in Alaska. Send in your comments today!

CEA Blog: Good for the economy, good for the environment (and not a bad deal for consumers, either)
Check out CEA’s recent blog entry about the government’s cash for clunkers program. Join the conversation at CEA’s website. Read blog…

Consumer Corner: Standby Power
Did you know that many electrical products use energy when plugged in, even if turned off? As you read this, many of your own household appliances and conveniences are using “standby power” – the term for using energy when plugged in, yet not in use.

Standby Power is costly to consumers – about 10 percent of household electricity use is due to standby-powered electronics. At any time, the average home in the United States has 40 products constantly using power without the homeowner realizing it.

To save on home electricity bills and reduce wasteful standby power use, try these tips from the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory:

Unplug devices that aren’t being used
Use power strips to cut power to groups of electronics at one time
Purchase low-use standby products

Using tips such as these – and more found here – may save you up to 30 percent of the wasted energy being used in your home.

CEA being honored by Bering Omega Community Services
Consumer Energy Alliance is proud to act as the honorary chair for Bering Omega Community Services’ 15th annual SING FOR HOPE on September 19, 2009. The event will feature an intimate evening of classic opera arias and popular showstoppers from favorite musicals.

Proceeds raised by the event will help support Bering Omega’s efforts to provide compassionate healthcare and social services to people living with HIV/AIDS.

If you would like more information on Bering Omega and will be in the Houston area on September 19th, please visit Bering Omega’s website at www.beringomega.org.

Experts: Global Oil “Crunch” Possible Within Next Five Years
Chief Economist of the International Energy Agency Fatih Birol warned Monday that oil fields throughout the world have passed peak production and that an oil “crunch” could develop during upcoming years. Read article…

Asia Sets its Sights on Solar Power

India and China are pursuing aggressive plans to step up their solar energy programs. Read article…

Affiliate Spotlight: American Public Gas Association
Representing publicly- and community-owned gas utilities, the American Public Gas Association (APGA) has more than 700 members throughout 36 states.

“We advocate on issues that impact our members and the communities they serve. We also work across the nation to educate our members on best safety practices, legislative issues, effective business and operational strategies and host conferences promoting the benefits of natural gas as a responsible and efficient energy source,” says President and CEO Bert Kalisch.

APGA’s vision is to be the voice and choice of public gas. In conjunction, the non-profit’s mission is to be an advocate for publicly-owned natural gas systems and effectively educate and communicate with members to promote safety, awareness, performance and competitiveness.

“As an advocate for public natural gas systems we work on behalf of our members to fight for the issues that affect their businesses and customers. From, transparency issues to supply issues, from the affordability of natural gas to promoting its environmental benefits – energy affects all of us,” Kalisch maintains.

One energy issue that is currently top priority to APGA, according to Kalisch, is promoting immediate use and responsible development of renewable and clean burning fossil fuels such as natural gas.

“We have a plentiful supply of natural gas available in the U.S and it is our hope that future energy plans include this clean, responsible and comfortable choice of fuel.”

APGA’s number one goal is to bring natural gas prices back to a long-term affordable level, Kalisch emphasizes.

“Increasing supply is a critical component of the solution to obtaining this goal. The primary reason we have suffered the price increases we have experienced is a natural gas supply/demand imbalance, supply has not been able or allowed to keep pace with demand.”

The imbalance, in large part, is due to federal policies which restrict exploration and production of natural gas.

“This restriction is ironic in light of other federal policies which favor gas use because of its clean-burning properties,” Kalisch maintains, adding that APGA is extremely concerned that congressional efforts to enact climate change legislation will further exacerbate the demand/supply balance.

“Under climate change legislation, natural gas will most likely become the ‘fuel of choice’ for electricity generation and this will further drive up price unless there are equivalent increases in supply.”

As a member of Consumer Energy Alliance, APGA recognizes the need for a strong U.S. energy policy and responsible development of domestic energy.

“We believe in the power of strength in numbers. That belief is the heart of our association and we believe that being a part of a group like the CEA just strengthens our likeminded messages,” Kalisch notes. “All of the affiliates in CEA may not have identical agendas or platforms, but we all understand the country’s incredible need for a comprehensive energy solution. Together as a group we can work together to move our collective agendas forward and finally see a U.S. energy policy that works for America, its citizens, energy producers and our planet.”

For more information on the American Public Gas Association, visit www.apga.org.