Regulations over the past 5 years have made operations more complex for independent oil and gas producers, according to a recent survey, Profile of Independent Producers 2012-13, released by the Independent Petroleum Association of America.
Liquefied Natural Gas Ltd. signed an agreement to buy 100% of Bear Head LNG Corp. (BHLC) in Nova Scotia from a subsidiary of Anadarko Petroleum Corp.
The US Environmental Protection Agency, which does not regulate methane emissions from natural gas local distribution companies (LDC), should start working with the US Pipeline & Hazardous Materials Safety Administration to address the problem, EPA’s inspector general’s office said in a July 25 report.
The New York Mercantile Exchange September crude oil contract ticked up 2Â¢ on July 25, closing out the week at $102.09/bbl. The October contract increased 15Â¢ to $100.87/bbl.
According to recent estimates from the US Energy Information Administration, members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, excluding Iran, earned about $826 billion in net oil export revenues in 2013, a 7% decrease from 2012 earnings. But this was still the second-largest earnings totals during 1975-2013—the timespan of how long EIA has tracked OPEC oil revenues.
The US Energy Information Administration’s current Short-Term Energy Outlook projects a record build of nearly 2,600 bcf from the beginning of April through the end of October, which would put inventories at 3,431 bcf at the end of October. In line with EIA's expectations, working natural gas storage midway through the summer storage injection season is on pace to for a record overall build.
The US Bureau of Ocean Energy Management issued a call for information and nominations on July 25 for a possible 2017 oil and gas lease sale in the Beaufort Sea off Alaska’s coast. Comments for what would be OCS Lease Sale 242 will be accepted for 45 days, it said.
US states that embraced hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling staged stronger economic recoveries than those that did not since 2008 when the country plunged into recession, an economist told a House Energy and Commerce subcommittee.
European response to Australia's abandonment of a carbon tax illuminates the impossibly narrow margin of political acceptability within which governments must work as they try to rearrange climate.
Australia's Parliament has repealed the carbon tax legislation that this year imposed $24.15 (Aus.)/tonne of carbon dioxide emissions.
In response to continued unrest in Ukraine, US President Barack Obama has announced new sanctions against Russia that include - for the first time - operations of Russian state-owned energy firms.
A shortage of inspectors, reduced budgets, and a record number of wells on public lands make necessary the US Bureau of Land Management's budget request for a fee system to increase its oil and gas inspection capacity, BLM Director Neil Kornze said.
US Sen. John Hoeven (R-SD) introduced an LNG export bill that he said represents a compromise between measures introduced from both sides of the aisle. S. 2638 would give the US Department of Energy 45 days to make a national interest determination after an export project sponsor filed an application with the US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, Hoeven said on July 24.
Crude oil futures prices in New York and London markets continued to draw back July 24 from recent high levels. Analysts with Raymond James & Associates Inc. noted that investors shrugged off fears that sanctions imposed by the European Union could impact Russian oil supplies.
The Texas Petro Index (TPI), a composite index based on a comprehensive group of upstream economic indicators released by the Texas Alliance of Energy Producers (TAEP), continued to produce record highs last month amid an “economic tsunami.”
Breitburn Energy Partners LP, Los Angeles, and Houston-based QR Energy LP have signed a definitive merger agreement where Breitburn will purchase QR Energy in an all-stock transaction valued at $3 billion by the companies.
A substantial gap exists between registered voters’ support for more US oil and gas development on federal lands, and what they think federal officials actually are doing about it, according to a recent survey commissioned by the American Petroleum Institute.
Refinery inputs reached a record-high of 16.8 million b/d in each of the past 2 weeks, exceeding the previous record from summer 2005, according to the US Energy Information Administration. Inputs at refineries in the Midwest and Gulf Coast have been particularly high, reflecting these refineries’ access to lower-cost crude oil, expansions of refining capacity, and increases in both US demand and exports.
Crude oil futures rose slightly on both New York and London markets July 23, and one analyst called Brent oil prices “subdued” while market participants await emerging geopolitical developments in the Russia-Ukraine conflict and also anticipate increasing oil supply from Libya.
A train with 20 or more tank cars carrying crude oil, ethanol, or other flammable liquids would be classified as a high-hazardous flammable train (HHFT), and would be subject to lower speed limits, routing risk assessments, and other new requirements under new US Department of Transportation regulatory proposals.
The US Department of Energy’s proposal to only issue national interest determinations to LNG export projects that have completed a National Environmental Policy Act review should be withdrawn, the Center for Liquefied Natural Gas said.
Diamondback Energy Inc., Midland, Tex., has entered into a definitive purchase agreement with unrelated third party sellers to acquire 16,773 gross (13,136 net) acres in Midland, Glasscock, Reagan, and Upton counties in Texas for $538 million.
Oil & Gas UK said it welcomes the opening of a formal consultation by HM Treasury on a new cluster area allowance to support investment in ultrahigh-pressure, ultrahigh-temperature (uHPHT) oil and gas fields on the UK Continental Shelf (UKCS).
Crude oil futures fell modestly on the New York market July 22 as traders and analysts awaited a weekly US government report on petroleum inventories and as participants across international oil markets awaited developments in the Russia-Ukraine conflict.
The costs of producing bitumen and synthetic crude in the Albertan oil sands have increased over the past year, says the Canadian Energy Research Institute in an annual report that projects steady growth in output.
Chevron Corp. has agreed to accept an alternative, more environmentally friendly plan proposed by city officials for the long-delayed $1 billion modernization of its 257,000-b/d Richmond, Calif., refinery.
The US Department of Energy wants to mobilize federal government, oil and gas industry, university, and other research to address subsurface engineering challenges, particularly controlling fracture propagation and fluid flow, officials said at the first of several projected discussions.
Tallgrass Energy Partners LP (TEP) has been offered the right to purchase 33.3% interest in Tallgrass Pony Express Pipeline LLC by Tallgrass Development LP for $600 million.
Crude oil futures prices climbed on the New York and London markets July 21 upon the likelihood that the European Union might impose tighter sanctions against Russian businesses in response to suspicions that pro-Russia separatists contributed to the crash of a Malaysia Airlines passenger jet.
Crude oil futures prices declined slightly in trading July 18 but remained elevated for the week on news of continued conflict between Russia and Ukraine.
Fund manager Allan Gray, the largest shareholder in Sydney-based Roc Oil Ltd., has failed in its challenge to the company's proposed $800 million (Aus.) merger with Horizon Oil Ltd., also of Sydney.
The US Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) issued a record of decision (ROD) for environmental review of geological and geophysical (G&G) survey activities offshore the Atlantic Coast.
Crude oil futures prices jumped again July 17—the second dollar-plus gain in as many days.
Corpus Christi Liquefaction LLC (CCL), a subsidiary of Cheniere Energy Inc., Houston, has agreed to supply Electricite de France SA (EDF) with 380,000 tonnes/year of LNG on the start of operations of Train 2 of the LNG export facility under development near Corpus Christi, Tex.
A proliferation of global oil geopolitical “flash points” makes it even more urgent for the US to aggressively reduce its dependence on crude oil for transportation fuels, according to speakers discussing a report issued by Securing America’s Future Energy (SAFE).
A shortage of inspectors, reduced budgets, and a record number of wells on public lands make the US Bureau of Land Management’s budget request for a fee system to increase its oil and gas inspection capacity necessary, BLM Director Neil Kornze said.
Total US petroleum deliveries, a measure of demand, rose 1.5% in June vs. a year ago to average just above 19 million b/d, according to the American Petroleum Institute’s most recent Monthly Statistics Report. For the second quarter, petroleum demand increased 1.5% compared with the same period last year.
In response to continued unrest in Ukraine, US President Barack Obama has announced new sanctions against Russia that include—for the first time—operations of Russian state-owned energy firms.
Australia’s Parliament has repealed the carbon tax legislation that this year imposed $24.15 (Aus.)/tonne of carbon dioxide emissions.
Crude oil futures prices rebounded on the New York market on July 16 after a weekly government inventory report showed a bigger drop in US oil supplies than analysts had expected.
Trinidad and Tobago’s state-owned Petrotrin is blaming the shale gas revolution in the US and lower crude prices at Cushing, Okla., for its decision to significantly reduce its refinery throughput to 120,000 bo/d from 180,000 bo/d.
India may create a natural gas safety board in the wake of the June 27 pipeline explosion that killed 19.
Indian companies have made “significant efforts” to diversify their crude oil supply sources, according to India’s Press Information Bureau.
The possibility that Venezuela’s financial support for energy imports in the region could erode quickly makes it imperative for the Obama administration to adopt a wide range of policies to avoid an energy crisis in the Caribbean and Central America, a recent Atlantic Council report said.
Crude oil prices dropped nearly $1/bbl on both the New York and London markets in July 15 trading with oil settling on the New York market at under $100/bbl on reports that Libya’s oil production was growing faster than expected.
Swift Energy Co., Houston, completed its agreement with PT Saka Energi Indonesia to fully develop 8,300 acres of Fasken properties in the Eagle Ford in Webb County, Tex.
US refiners continue to respond to a changed competitive environment with additional investments and aggressive oil product export deals, speakers said during the US Energy Information Administration’s 2014 energy conference’s opening day.
North Dakota production continued to climb in May but new requirements in the state’s flaring reduction plan slowed permitting activity in June and may lead to production curtailments for some operators early next year.
The US could find its light crude oil production growth stymied if it doesn’t allow more of it to be exported, speakers warned during the US Energy Information Administration’s 2014 energy conference’s first day.
Crude oil prices settled lower on the New York and London markets July 14 after weekend reports that Iraq’s parliament was unable to agree on a new speaker, which could delay attempts to remedy insurgency in Iraq.
OAO Rosneft reported that the Brazilian government has approved a transaction that would give Rosneft an additional 6% in a joint venture in the Solimoes basin for $96 million. The transaction would give Rosneft 51% interest and operatorship in the JV.
Oil & Gas UK said it welcomes “urgently needed” formal consultation announced July 14 by HM Treasury into the future of the UK offshore oil and gas tax regime.
OAO Rosneft has signed agreements to acquire land drilling and workover assets in Russia and Venezuela from Weatherford International PLC for $500 million cash.
Crude oil markets closed out the week ended July 11 lower in both New York and London.
Whiting Petroleum Corp. has agreed to acquire Kodiak Oil & Gas Corp., both of Denver, in an all-stock transaction valued at $6 billion, creating the largest Bakken-Three Forks producer with more than 107,000 boe/d of first-quarter production, 855,000 combined net acres, and 3,460 net future drilling locations.
Woodside Petroleum Ltd. has farmed into Beach Petroleum Ltd.’s wholly owned and logistically intriguing inland offshore permit in Lake Tanganyika, Tanzania.
Most people do the right thing most of the time. This statement is not just an adage or a pleasantry or a disappointing fortune-cookie screed.
Maersk Oil, a wholly owned subsidiary of AP Moller-Maersk AS of Copenhagen, has opted to write off $1.7 billion in investments in Brazil's Wahoo and Itaipu fields while divesting its ownership share in Polvo field.
International news for oil and gas professionals
Fund manager Allan Gray, the largest shareholder in Sydney-based Roc Oil Ltd., has failed in its challenge to the company’s proposed $800 million (Aus.) merger with Horizon Oil Ltd., also of Sydney.
On the back of rapid territorial gains by militants of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) in northern Iraq, ICE Brent oil futures surged in mid-June to a 9-month high of more than $115/bbl.
Crude oil prices in New York and London markets performed an about-face July 10, recovering finally from a long downward slide.
Occidental Petroleum Corp. has clarified executive management responsibilities following the recent appointment of leadership for the company’s California Resources Corp. (CRC) subsidiary.
The US Bureau of Land Management’s Royal Gorge Field Office has begun a public scoping period for two proposed carbon dioxide wells near Gardner, Colo. Oxy USA, which operates the existing Sheep Mountain CO2 production unit, proposed the wells, the US Department of the Interior agency said on July 10. Comments will be accepted through July 25.
BG Group has completed the sale of its 62.78% equity interest in the Central Area Transmission System (CATS) gas pipeline in the UK North Sea along with associated infrastructure to Antin Infrastructure Partners, Paris.
Occidental Petroleum Corp. has appointed Todd A. Stevens as president and chief executive officer and William E. Albrecht as executive chairman of its independent spinoff California Resources Corp. (CRC).
US Rep. Pete Olson (R-Tex.) announced the formation of the House Refining Caucus with 21 Republicans and 5 Democrats as members. The group’s goal is to educate House members about issues refiners face and related impacts on consumers, he said on July 9. US Rep. Cedric Richmond (D-La.) is co-chairman.
Countries in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) are talking more openly about energy subsidy reforms, but governments need to pay closer attention to middle-class consumers’ concerns if they expect to make more progress, speakers said during a July 10 forum at the Atlantic Council.
Arawak Energy Russia BV has agreed to acquire all interests in the Sotchemyu-Talyu and North Irael fields in Russia’s Komi region from Lundin Petroleum AB.
Crude oil prices fell by more than $1/bbl on the New York market July 9 on reports that Libya’s largest oil field had resumed production following the lifting of a force majeure on two ports, Ras Lanuf and Es Sider, which together account for about half of Libya’s oil exports.
The American Petroleum Institute issued a new standard specifically aimed at effectively engaging with US communities affected by exploration and development of unconventional oil and gas resources. ANSI-API Bulletin 100-3 emerged following 3 years of meetings and discussions with producers, community leaders, state regulators, property owners and other stakeholders, API Standards Director David Miller said.
The board of Phillips 66 has approved a $1.2-billion increase for the company’s capital expenditures this year to $3.9 billion to support the company’s growth strategy.
Lukoil Overseas has made several management appointments.
Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. LP (KKR) and Riverstone Holdings LLC have signed a definitive agreement to combine the existing assets held by KKR Natural Resources Funds with the assets of Legend Production Holdings LLC, a Riverstone company, to create a Fort Worth-based oil and gas company named Trinity River Energy LLC.
Suncor Energy Inc., Calgary, and GE have signed two agreements that aim to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and water usage in the oil sands.
Crude oil prices on the New York market dropped modestly on July 8, settling down for the seventh consecutive session while oil prices on the London market dropped by more than $1/bbl, marking Brent’s sixth consecutive trading session that ended with a decline.
Crude oil production in the Permian basin has increased to 1.35 million b/d in 2013 from 850,000 b/d in 2007. Since March 2013, the Permian basin has become the largest crude oil producing region in the US, with production exceeding that from the federal offshore Gulf of Mexico region. In 2013, the Permian basin’s production accounted for 18% of total US crude oil production, said the US Energy Information Administration.
During the April-September summer driving season this year in the US, regular gasoline retail prices will average $3.66/gal, 8Â¢/gal higher than last year and 4Â¢ higher than projected last month, according to a forecast from the US Energy Information Administration in its July Short-Term Energy Outlook (STEO).
Maersk Oil, a wholly owned subsidiary of AP Moller-Maersk AS of Copenhagen, has opted to write off $1.7 billion in investments in Brazil’s Wahoo and Itaipu fields while divesting its ownership share in Polvo field.
Royal Dutch Shell PLC confirmed it will bow out of the Kidan natural gas development project in Saudi Arabia’s Empty Quarter.
Wolf Petroleum Ltd., Perth, reported the passing of a new petroleum law in Mongolia designed to boost foreign investment in the country.
Golden Pass Products LLC, Houston, has submitted a formal application with the US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to construct and operate its proposed LNG project at the existing Golden Pass LNG import facility in Sabine Pass, Tex.
Crude oil prices on the New York market declined in trading July 7 as did natural gas futures prices on forecasts for cooler temperatures in the US Midwest and Northeast for 6-10 days.
Wintershall Norge AS has agreed to acquire 15% interest in production license 359 (PL359), which encompasses the Luno II discovery, from Lundin Norway AS, a wholly owned subsidiary of Lundin Petroleum AB.
A.M.K. Sinha has been named chairman of Indian Oil Corp. Ltd. He succeeds R.K. Malhotra, who retired after a brief stint as chairman.
New projects will boost industrial use of natural gas in the US during 2012-20 by 19%, according to the Center for Energy Economics (CEE), part of the Bureau of Economic Geology at the University of Texas at Austin.
The New York Mercantile Exchange August crude oil contract lost 42Â¢ on July 3, closing at $104.06/bbl. The September contract declined 40Â¢ to $103.51/bbl. Markets were closed on July 4 for a holiday in the US.
Warren Resources Inc., New York, has agreed to acquire the Marcellus assets of Citrus Energy Corp., Castle Rock, Colo., along with two additional working interest owners for $352.5 million, effective July 1.
Woodside Petroleum Ltd. has finalized a farm-in agreement with independent firm Chariot Oil & Gas Ltd. for a position in the Doukkala basin offshore northwest Morocco.
The US Bureau of Land Management announced on May 5 that it was beginning to review how it develops its resource management plans (RMPs).
When governments meddle in energy markets, strange things happen—such as an appearance by Al Gore with a coal magnate at a press conference announcing opposition to carbon taxation.
Linn Energy LLC, Houston, has agreed to acquire assets in five US operating areas from Devon Energy Corp., Oklahoma City, for $2.3 billion, effective Apr. 1.
In a speech on July 17, 2008, former US Vice-President Al Gore challenged the nation "to commit to producing 100% of our electricity from renewable energy and truly clean carbon-free sources within 10 years."
Unipetrol AS has exercised its right of preemption to acquire soon-to-be former partner Eni SPA’s interest in Ceska Rafinerska AS (CRC), a refining company in Czech Republic.
Statoil ASA has divested 10% interest to Colombia’s state-owned Ecopetrol SA in Blocks 38 and 39 in the Kwanza basin offshore Angola.
An agreement between the Libyan government and rebels to reopen two oil ports in eastern Libya contributed to a slip in crude oil prices in July 2 trading in both New York and London markets although analysts noted that similar agreements have fallen through in recent months.
Chile is focusing most of its attention on natural gas to meet the country’s energy demand challenges, stated Maximo Pacheco Matte, the newly appointed Minister of Energy, during a July 2 panel discussion in Houston.
Talos Energy Offshore LLC signed a definitive agreement to buy certain Gulf of Mexico Outer Continental Shelf properties from Stone Energy Corp., Lafayette, La., for $200 million in cash and assumed future undiscounted abandonment liabilities of $117 million. Stone has deemed these assets to be “noncore” to its operations.
North Dakota operators that fail to meet the state’s flaring reduction targets may soon be forced to curtail oil production from wells targeting the Bakken and Three Forks formations, according to an order issued July 1 by state regulators.
US national average retail gasoline price on June 30 was $3.70/gal, the highest average heading into the Fourth of July holiday since 2008. Gasoline prices in 2014, however, have remained well below the spring peaks reached in each of the previous 3 years, according to the US Energy Information Administration.