Farming and Energy

April 13, 2018

Farms and Ranches Need Energy

(The below is an email sent by Vets4Energy - reprinted by permission)

"There are two spiritual dangers in not owning a farm. One is the danger of supposing that breakfast comes from the grocery and the other that heat comes from the furnace." 
~Aldo Leopold~
(American author and environmentalist, 1887-1949)

Ever wonder if farming could be an ally with the natural gas and oil industry?

At first glance, many believe they'd be on opposite sides of the fence.  But most farmers would tell you something different:  farmers, including ranchers, need the energy. 

Access to American natural gas and oil is important to everyone, often in ways we don't always think about.  The same is true with agriculture and livestock.

With 10 out 10 Americans saying they want to eat daily, the farming/energy relationship is important to everyone.  And energy touches nearly every aspect of growing and raising our food; of running the equipment and heating the barns; milking cows; and for packaging and getting the food onto the shelves.

But many are saying the pipelines for getting that energy to the farmers, or across their land, is unwanted and unsafe. 

Aaron DeJoia wrote "There is a myth propagated by some fractivists that pipelines and agriculture conflict, but it simply isn't true. They can peacefully co-exist."  In that 2016 article, Mr. DeJoia discusses the process by which agricultural soils are protected and redeveloped after pipelines are run.  As a farmer himself, he is vested in ensuring that farm land is protected, and the soil returned to a usable state.

I ask you to read that article before you decide how pipelines affect farmers.  That way, next time you hear that pipelines destroy farmland and hurt farmers, consider that sources motivation for selling such fear.  The additional income and reduced expenses from pipelines helps keep small farms operating;  the energy industry focuses on farmland protection and restoration; and the local tax revenues generated help fund local and state governments. 

Ensuring that America has sufficient pipelines and extraction sites not only improves our national security by reducing our dependence on foreign energy, it also helps strengthen our country by creating a stable agriculture sector.

Just something to think about (see our Vets4Energy "From Farm to Table" infographic showing the relationship between energy and agriculture).

Capt. James McCormick, USA (ret.)
Program Director, Vets4Energy


Veterans and Energy

Energy Security, Veterans and Energy Careers:  Men and women who've worn the uniform of the United States view "energy security" through a different lens than the rest of us.  To many of them the American energy revolution, and the U.S. becoming a net natural gas exporter for the first time in nearly 60 years, means our armed forces are less likely to be deployed to faraway places to protect energy interests. The point was underscored at a Vets4Energy event on April 10 that included, among other, attendees of the West Virginia Gold Star Mothers.

Energy Infrastructure:  Bottlenecks on the U.S. natural gas super highway are starting to stack up, raising concerns about whether infrastructure can be built fast enough to meet surging supplies. "One threat to the U.S. being able to export LNG and expand its export capability is the overall commitment to invest in infrastructure to move natural gas," said Meg Gentle, chief executive officer of gas exporter Tellurian Inc., in an interview at the Bloomberg New Energy Finance Future of Energy Summit in New York on April 10.

What's Behind Fuel Costs: Nationwide, the American Automobile Association (AAA) reports that average prices currently are $2.64 per gallon for gasoline (up from $2.54 a month ago) and $2.95 per gallon for diesel fuel (unchanged from last month). While there is nothing particularly special about these figures from an economic perspective, consumers take notice when fuel prices have risen. Let's look at the factors that have affected pump prices in recent years.


U.S. Agencies Agree to Slash Approval Times for Infrastructure Projects (04.09.18)  Fourteen agencies... signed an agreement that puts into effect an executive order setting a two-year goal for completing the review process...

Canada taking less LNG as North American shale improves (04.02.18)  U.S. piped gas exports to Canada increased 18 percent from 2016, federal data show.

U.S. net energy imports in 2017 fall to their lowest levels since 1982 (03.28.18)  Total net energy imports to the United States fell to 7.3 quadrillion British thermal units (quads) in 2017, a 35% decrease from 2016 and the lowest level since 1982.

U.S. on pace to become a leader in LNG exports (03.27.18)  More than half of all U.S. LNG exports went to the Asian and Mexican economies last year.

•See more news at

•See a global energy perspective on our Facebook page.

As always, if you have questions or comments, or would like to get more involved in Vets4Energy, you can reply to this email or use the CONTACT US button on our website. 

# # #

<- Go Back

Sign Up for Email

Give Us Your Thoughts