Oil + Gas

Marathon Petroleum cut nearly 2,000 jobs – and reaped $2.1B in pandemic benefits

BY: - June 18, 2021

One morning in September, word of layoffs began to spread quickly through Marathon Petroleum’s refinery in Garyville. Seven months into the pandemic, workers at the oil refining plant thought they would be spared the fate of their colleagues at other facilities, who had already been jettisoned into a daunting job market. “Through the morning, we […]

COMMENTARY

The tax breaks for jobs scheme isn’t working out for Louisiana | Jarvis DeBerry

BY: - June 18, 2021

You, I and every other American taxpayer helped out Marathon Petroleum during the worst of the pandemic. Then, the same year it secured its $2.1 billion in federal tax benefits — the most of any U.S. oil company — Marathon let go almost 1,920 employees. The “reductions,” to use Marathon’s word, included 45 workers at […]

Federal judge halts Biden pause on new oil and gas leases across the U.S.

BY: - June 16, 2021

A federal judge in Lafayette has ordered the Biden administration to restart regular sales of oil and gas leases, forcing the administration to prematurely abandon a central piece of its climate change agenda.  In a preliminary ruling issued Tuesday, U.S. District Judge Terry Doughty granted the request of Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry and 12 […]

RISE St. James founder Sharon Lavigne wins Goldman Environmental Prize

BY: - June 15, 2021

Sharon Lavigne, a retired special needs teacher in St. James Parish and the founder of the faith based environmental justice group RISE St. James has been named the 2021 North American winner of the Goldman Environmental Prize for fighting to keep multibillion dollar chemical plants out of her already polluted community in the heart of […]

Amid oil and gas buildout, Louisiana industry pushes for less oversight

BY: - June 15, 2021

When a natural gas pipeline fire in Paradis killed one worker and burned three others in 2017, the Louisiana State Police ordered Phillips 66 to pay a $22,000 fine for failing to immediately report the incident. The fire burned for four days before first responders could put it out. But the company ultimately didn’t pay […]

Governor signs orphan well tax exemption into law

Lawmakers hope ‘orphan’ well tax exemption will resolve ongoing problem in oil industry

BY: - June 10, 2021

Lawmakers on Wednesday approved legislation that would establish a program to help fix “orphan” oil wells by offering a tax exemption on oil produced from abandoned wells that are reworked to produce again. While it may resolve the ongoing problem of leaky unsealed wells across Louisiana, one critic pointed out that the legislation simply gives […]

Gov. Edwards gets bill that doubles maximum punishment for flying drones over critical infrastructure

BY: - June 9, 2021

A bill that would increase penalties for flying drones above petrochemical facilities, pipelines and grain elevators is headed to Gov. John Bel Edwards’ desk  for his signature.  HB265, by Rep. Ken Brass (D-Vacherie), increases the maximum fine for the second offense of flying a drone above critical infrastructure from $2,000 to $4,000 and increases the […]

Legislation to slow down solar development advances in Louisiana Legislature

BY: - May 27, 2021

Two pieces of legislation that could slow solar development in Louisiana moved forward at the State Capitol Wednesday. A House resolution and Senate bill both advanced out of committees without opposition. House Concurrent Resolution 40 by Rep. Clay Schexnayder (R-Gonzales) will block solar projects from being eligible for industrial tax breaks until July 10, and […]

Attorneys general demand Army Corps review Formosa facility

Group of attorneys general demands review of Formosa facility in ‘Cancer Alley’

BY: - May 24, 2021

A group of attorneys general sent a letter to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on Monday demanding a deeper analysis of the climate, wildlife and environmental justice impacts of Formosa Plastics’ proposed petrochemical complex in St. James Parish. Formosa Plastics’ proposed petrochemical complex would include 10 chemical manufacturing plants and numerous support facilities. The […]

Tax-swap package now left to Louisiana voters

House passes bill that would hide corporate tax break data from the public

BY: - May 24, 2021

House lawmakers on Thursday voted 59-38 for a bill that would change the public records law to allow the state economic development agency to hide certain corporate tax incentive records from the public.  House Bill 456, sponsored by Rep. Rick Edmonds (R-Baton Rouge), proposes to make an exception to Louisiana’s public records law for certain […]

New law keeps some industrial pollution accidents hidden from the public

Gov. Edwards wants feds to end suspension against oil and gas leases in Gulf

BY: - May 13, 2021

Gov. John Bel Edwards urged Congress to lift the pause on oil and gas leasing in the Gulf of Mexico at a U.S. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources hearing Thursday. “If this pause turns into something longer than the word ‘pause’ suggests, we know that it will have a tremendously adverse impact on […]

Governor signs orphan well tax exemption into law

Bill said to help solve the Louisiana’s abandoned oil well problem passes House

BY: - May 11, 2021

The Louisiana House of Representatives unanimously passed a bill to exempt production of oil from abandoned wells from severance tax Tuesday. Rep. Jean-Paul Coussan (R-Lafayette) described House Bill 662 as a win-win for the industry and the environment. But environmental advocates disagree. The executive director of Healthy Gulf, Cynthia Sarthou, called the bill a “real […]