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OIPA heads to Washington

March 02, 2010
Leaders from the OIPA will be in the nation's capital this week as part of the IPAA's annual fly-in, a face-to-face lobbying campaign that will put independent producers in meetings with lawmakers and aides from about 70 congressional offices.

The OIPA will join leaders of dozens of independent oil and gas companies on Capitol Hill to press lawmakers against hiking industry taxes and against imposing new federal regulations on drilling techniques.

From the Houston Chronicle:

“There is no better effective voice than a real live constituent from Midland or from Oklahoma or from Houston or Colorado meeting with their members, or their policymakers, to talk about how these policy proposals … could actually play themselves out,” said Bruce Vincent, president of Houston-based Swift Energy Co. and chairman of the IPAA.

The group is focusing on a few key issues:

• Lobbying against the Obama administration's proposal to ax $36.5 billion in oil and gas tax incentives that the industry relies on for cost recovery and to mitigate the inherent risk of drilling.

• Pushing against congressional proposals for new regulation of hydraulic fracturing, used to draw natural gas from unconventional sources.

• Urging lawmakers to protect the ability of energy producers and users to buy and sell financial derivatives to manage risk, such as a producer entering into an oil futures contract to hedge against the possibility that crude prices will fall on the cash market.

The industry leaders also are weighing in on efforts to cap greenhouse gas emissions, arguing the effort should be global and that any congressional global warming bill should promote cleaner-burning natural gas.

“Legislatively, what they can do is try to encourage the role of natural gas as part of America's energy future,” Vincent said. One prime candidate: the so-called Natural Gas Act, backed by billionaire Texas oilman T. Boone Pickens and Rep. Dan Boren, D-Okla.
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