Two years of research conducted by a public/private study group and administered by the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners has identified trillions of dollars in impacts that would result from maintaining certain restrictions on development of America's oil and gas resources.
Results of the research were presented to state utility commissioners meeting in Washington, DC. The "Moratoria Study" used a Federal government modeling program relied upon by Congress and the Administration for analyzing the energy outlook under existing laws and projecting the impacts of new energy policy proposals. The "NARUC-National Energy Modeling System" version of the model was employed by the study group's contractor, Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) .
The report projects effects under two scenarios: 1) determining the social, economic and environmental effects of maintaining moratoria and the updated oil and natural gas resource base estimates, and 2) determining those effects without the updated resource base. Model projections show that :
- Cumulative domestic oil and natural gas production decreases by 15percent and 9 percent, respectively.
- Average natural gas price increases by 17 percent and average electricity prices increase by 5 percent.
- Cumulative oil imports from OPEC countries increase by 4 billion barrels.
- Cumulative national payments to OPEC countries increase by $607bn.
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