What with national oil and gas revenues in decline, and the lack of incentives for exploration by the state-owned company Pemex, Mexico’s new President Enrique Pena Nieto has pushed through legislation that will allow profit- and production-sharing contracts and licenses to find and develop new oil and gas reserves in the nation to our south. Mexico has traditionally relied on oil and gas revenues for a third of its federal budget — and yet many Mexicans are fearful of the new arrangement that promises to lower energy prices and create jobs and economic growth. Coupled with reforms in energy policy, these changes could signal a major expansion of the Mexican economy — if the President can win the political battle to bring these reforms from paper to production.
So a few cities in Colorado and far-left Oberlin, Ohio, have passed fracking bans — but do they dare pass bans on the sale and use of gasoline made from fracked oil, or of natural gas recovered via this controversial process? Thank goodness existing law protects citizens of single towns from being hoodwinked by activists into at least some very bad policy decisions. Yeah, we once got people to sign a petition banning dihydrogen monoxide as a dangerous substance!