U.S. Ruling Loosens Four-Decade Ban On Oil Exports
Shipments of Unrefined American Oil Could Begin As Early As August
Christian Berthelsen And
June 24, 2014 5:14 p.m. ET
The Obama administration has quietly cleared the way for the first exports of unrefined American oil in four decades, allowing energy companies to chip away at the long-standing ban on selling U.S. crude overseas.
Federal officials have told two energy companies that they can legally export a kind of ultra-light oil that has become plentiful as drillers tap shale formations across the U.S. With relatively minimal processing, oil shipments could begin as early as August, according to one industry executive involved in the matter.
Using a process known as a private ruling, the U.S. Commerce Dept.'s Bureau of Industry and Security is allowing Pioneer Natural Resources Co. of Irving, Texas, and Enterprise Products Partners LP of Houston to export ultra-light oil known as condensate to foreign buyers who could turn it into gasoline, jet fuel and diesel.
Both companies confirmed they had received the rulings.
Under current rules, companies can export refined fuel, such as gasoline and diesel, but not oil itself. The Administration's new approach, which hasn't been publicly announced, redefines some ultra-light oil as fuel after it has been minimally processed, making it eligible for sale abroad.
The Commerce Department said the companies have improved the processing of the crude in a way that qualifies it for export, even though the oil wouldn't count as being traditionally refined. Exactly how the agency defines condensate and remains unclear.
The first shipments are likely to be small, but could ultimately encompass a lot of the 3 million barrels a day of oil that energy companies are pumping from shale, industry experts say, depending on how regulators define what qualifies for export.
The Brookings Institution estimates as much as 700,000 barrels a day could be available for export starting next year.
Write to Christian Berthelsen at firstname.lastname@example.org and Lynn Cook at email@example.com
This is very good news, both for LINE and for American jobs. The US does not have refineries that can process this kind of crude--which we are producing in abundance; rather, we have refineries that can process heavy crude such as produced by Alaska, Venezuela and Canadian tar sands
It is good for LINE as a natural gas centered American energy producer.
It is not good for American jobs. Obama should get out of the way of the refining industry and encourage them to make the capital investment to use these very light and clean oils for Americans.
My goodness please be careful. We want valued added well paid manufacturing jobs here in America. We want to restore price competition to the domestic gasoline markets.
VLO can and would invest in the well understood technology required to process clean light American oils. If they did not have the irrational lawless Obama uncertainty over the entire American industry.
Please just get rid of the insane corn ethanol corruption first. It was what Obama is bound to do by the RFS law and science. But then we all know about the quality of Progressive science by opinion.
exporting ngl's that we can't use is going to cost American jobs? I think all of a sudden wells just got more profitable to drill and more rigs will eventually be put tow work and last time I checked most of the workers were American.
there is a problem with exporting oil IMO the law of supply and demand says if you have lots of stuff more than you need the price goes down So if we want lower fuel prices in America why are we giving oil co a way to sell excess oil instead of allowing oil to drive down in prices
As with Norris , you are deficient in economics.The lifting of export ban on NG liquids will boost US exports and boost prices oil companies get for the product. Why on earth do you want to turn down a business opportunity. I suppose its like the GOP wanting to close EXIM bank to make the US less competitive in exports of manufactured goods. A fine example you are of 'Patriots". The US exports all the refined petroleum products it can as there is no ban, and this change will not take away jobs, but add.