Location: Resources For the Future
1400 16th St. NW
1st Floor Conference Space
Washington, DC 20036

In the United States, a suite of technological advances have led to a historic increase in oil production over the past decade, ushering in a new era for American energy and transforming regions with growing production, jobs, and government revenues. For these producing regions, however, the story is also about local economic volatility and vulnerability. Along with substantial economic benefits, production growth has imposed substantial burdens on communities and governments in the oil patch, who must accommodate the influx of workers through investments in infrastructure and other public services, all while keeping an eye toward an inevitable dip in prices and local economic activity. In the private sector, businesses face difficult decisions about the scale and timing of investments in regions where economic volatility makes it difficult to anticipate consumer demand, labor costs, and more.

The Columbia University Center on Global Energy Policy and Resources for the Future (RFF) in Washington, D.C. examined the regional impacts of oil volatility, and discussed whether there might be a federal role in supporting producing communities. Two panels brought together experts at the federal, state, and local levels to discuss how volatile oil prices have affected and are likely to affect the economies of producing regions, and examine potential avenues for federal intervention to support economic diversification and fiscal health in producing regions.

Panel I: Energy Volatility - Local Impacts and Response

  • Daryl Dukart, County Commissioner, Dunn County, North Dakota
  • Sue Gander, National Governor’s Association
  • Diane Rahm, Professor, Department of Political Science, Texas State University
  • Moderator: Daniel Raimi, Resources for the Future

Panel II: Federal Intervention to Support Producing Regions

  • Adele Morris, senior fellow and policy director for Climate and Energy Economics, Brookings
  • Patrick J. O’Brien, Director, Office of Economic Adjustment, Office of the Under Secretary of Defense, Department of Defense
  • Nancy Gilbert, Department of Commerce
  • Moderator: Ron Minsk, Center on Global Energy Policy


This event was open to press. Media inquiries or requests for interviews should be directed to Artealia Gilliard (ag4144@sipa.columbia.edu).

For more information contact: energypolicy@columbia.edu.