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Reproduced from report from Columbia University's Center on Global Energy Policy and Resources for the Future; Chart: Axios Visuals

The federal government should take new steps to help oil-producing regions navigate boom-and-bust cycles and diversify their economies, two nonpartisan think tanks say in a new report.

Why it matters: The decade-long oil boom has transformed the U.S. into the world’s largest producer. But that growth has increased the number of communities vulnerable to market volatility.

What they found: The report from Resources for the Future and a Columbia University energy think tank suggests two main policies.

  1. Congress should instruct the Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration to provide grants to oil producing communities and fund economic diversification for those regions.
  2. The government should create an Oil Volatility Advisory Board to connect oil producing regions with experts from departments like Commerce and Energy, and help those areas take advantage of existing funding opportunities. The authors say this is more politically feasible since it could be implemented by the executive branch alone.

Where it stands: The biggest risk to oil-heavy communities in places like eastern New Mexico and west Texas is becoming overly dependent on oil production, which can crowd out investment in other sectors — leading to a non-diverse economy that doesn't do well long-term.

  • Oil and gas producers shed one-third of their labor force in the three years after prices crashed in 2014, as seen in the above charts.
  • "[In] my personal experience, local officials are not looking to the federal government as a resource to help them navigate these new challenges related to volatility," Resources for the Future analyst Daniel Raimi tells Axios — adding that "a modest effort" at the federal level could make a difference.

Between the lines: "I don’t know if either of those options are likely to be adopted, but given Washington’s celebration of the oil boom, it seems like there may be some appetite," Raimi says. "Our main goal is to simply put the issue on the table."

Go deeper: The shale boom has become a check on the market's long-term volatility

Go deeper

Updated 36 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 4 p.m. ET: 12,813,864 — Total deaths: 566,790 — Total recoveries — 7,046,535Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 4 p.m. ET: 3,286,025 — Total deaths: 135,089 — Total recoveries: 995,576 — Total tested: 39,553,395Map.
  3. States: Florida smashes single-day record for new coronavirus cases with over 15,000 — Miami-Dade mayor says "it won't be long" until county's hospitals reach capacity.
  4. Public health: Ex-FDA chief projects "apex" of South's coronavirus curve in 2-3 weeks — Coronavirus testing czar: Lockdowns in hotspots "should be on the table"
  5. Education: Betsy DeVos says schools that don't reopen shouldn't get federal funds — Pelosi accuses Trump of "messing with the health of our children."

11 GOP congressional nominees support QAnon conspiracy

Lauren Boebert posing in her restaurant in Rifle, Colorado, on April 24. Photo: Emily Kask/AFP

At least 11 Republican congressional nominees have publicly supported or defended the QAnon conspiracy theory movement or some of its tenets — and more aligned with the movement may still find a way onto ballots this year.

Why it matters: Their progress shows how a fringe online forum built on unsubstantiated claims and flagged as a threat by the FBI is seeking a foothold in the U.S. political mainstream.

Lindsey Graham says he will ask Mueller to testify before Senate

Photo: Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) tweeted Sunday that he will grant Democrats' request to call former special counsel Robert Mueller to testify before his committee.

The big picture: The announcement comes on the heels of Mueller publishing an op-ed in the Washington Post that defended the Russia investigation and conviction of Roger Stone, whose sentence was commuted by President Trump on Friday.