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US President Barack Obama proposed a $10/bbl crude oil tax to fund transportation improvements in addition to doubling federal clean energy research and development outlays in the final federal budget proposal of his presidency. Oil and gas associations immediately said the plan could jeopardize the nation’s relatively new position as a leading global energy producer.

Posted: February 9, 2016, 11:08 pm

In its February Short-Term Energy Outlook (STEO), the US Energy Information Administration forecast Brent crude prices to average $37.52/bbl in 2016, compared with a previous forecast of $40.15/bbl. West Texas Intermediate prices are expected to average $37.59/bbl, down from $38.54/bbl forecasted last month. For 2017, EIA raised its outlook for WTI to $50/bbl from $47/bbl, while leaving the Brent forecast at $50/bbl.

Posted: February 9, 2016, 9:53 pm

Houston-based exploration and production startup Terra Energy Partners LLC has agreed to acquire WPX Energy Rocky Mountain LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of WPX Energy Inc., Tulsa, for $910 million. The deal is expected to close in the second quarter.

Posted: February 9, 2016, 6:03 pm

In its February Oil Market Report, the International Energy Agency warned that the short-term risk to the downside has increased, as the surplus of oil supply over demand in the early part of 2016 is even greater than forecast in last month’s OMR.

Posted: February 9, 2016, 5:34 pm

The US Environmental Protection Agency proposed giving refiners an additional 18 months to comply with portions of air emissions limits that the federal agency published in December 2015. Comments on the proposal, which appeared in the Feb. 9 Federal Register, will be accepted through Mar. 25.

Posted: February 9, 2016, 5:26 pm

Depressed natural gas prices now aren’t likely to affect future US LNG exports much because most projects won’t go into operation until 2020 when global markets have improved, speakers at an Atlantic Council (AC) forum agreed.

Posted: February 9, 2016, 4:57 pm

Qatar Petroleum has agreed to acquire 30% interest from Chevron Morocco Exploration Ltd., a subsidiary of Chevron Corp., in the Cap Rhir Deep, Cap Cantin Deep, and Cap Walidia Deep leases offshore Morocco.

Posted: February 9, 2016, 4:35 pm

Light, sweet crude oil prices dropped Feb. 8 to settle back under $30/bbl, and the downward momentum continued in early Feb. 9 trading after the International Energy Agency issued a report in which it maintained its expectations for sluggish additional crude demand during 2016.

Posted: February 9, 2016, 3:48 pm

PA Resources AB, Stockholm, has agreed to divest its North Sea interests to Petrogas E&P, Muscat.

Posted: February 9, 2016, 3:23 pm

The Obama administration’s forthcoming fiscal 2017 federal budget proposal probably will contain provisions harmful to the US oil and gas industry beyond the $10/bbl crude oil tax that the White House announced last week, two major national oil and gas associations’ top officials warned.

Posted: February 8, 2016, 9:31 pm

Three workers were killed after a fire struck the compression unit of the Abkatun A platform in the Bay of Campeche over the weekend, Petroleos Mexicanos (Pemex) said on Feb. 7.

Posted: February 8, 2016, 8:29 pm

Significant cuts to capital and exploration spending plans will be needed for North American exploration and production companies to demonstrate real financial discipline and realign spending more closely with cash flow, IHS Energy reported.

Posted: February 8, 2016, 6:06 pm

State-owned Oil & Natural Gas Corp. of India has warned the Indian petroleum ministry that natural gas prices allowed by the government won’t support development of its fields in the offshore Krishna-Godavari basin.

Posted: February 8, 2016, 5:50 pm

Confusion over ethanol evident in the Republican presidential debate Jan. 28 makes comforting the news that Iowans show fading concern about the issue.

Posted: February 8, 2016, 5:03 pm

BP Trinidad & Tobago (BPTT) has reported that it will invest $1.5 billion in Trinidad and Tobago this year in spite of falling oil prices and declining revenue, BPTT Pres. Norman Christie said.

Posted: February 8, 2016, 4:59 pm

Light, sweet crude oil prices dropped modestly, settling under $31/bbl on the New York market Feb. 5 to end another volatile week for oil prices. Analysts attributed the volatility to a stronger dollar and world oil oversupply concerns.

Posted: February 8, 2016, 4:50 pm

Continental Resources Inc., Oklahoma City, has reported a capital expenditures budget for 2016 of $920 million, a 66% reduction from the planned $2.7 billion for 2015.

Posted: February 8, 2016, 4:50 pm

A federal rule for offshore oil and gas operations could have bigger adverse impacts than the US Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement projected when it proposed the regulation in April 2015, the Gulf Economic Survival Team announced.

Posted: February 8, 2016, 4:46 pm

California's two US senators-Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein-said that they will introduce an amendment next week to wide-ranging energy legislation currently on the Senate floor.

Posted: February 8, 2016, 4:37 pm

A "sharp contraction" of crude oil prices and "limited access to the capital markets" in 2015 resulted in the least fourth-quarter merger and acquisition activity in the US oil and gas industry in 5 years, according to analysis from PwC US.

Posted: February 8, 2016, 4:34 pm

Creative pragmatism challenges environmental dogma in Alberta. With two important decisions important to oil sands development, a government less than a year in office has eased fear it will yield to pressure from climate extremists.

Posted: February 8, 2016, 4:31 pm

International news for oil and gas professionals

Posted: February 8, 2016, 6:00 am

The Trinidad and Tobago government is threatening to market its share of its natural gas and not leave it up to the partners of Atlantic LNG (ALNG).

Posted: February 5, 2016, 10:15 pm

Utah’s state government sued the US Departments of the Interior and Agriculture for adopting a new greater sage grouse management plan on Sept. 18, 2015, which allegedly overthrew the state’s own 2013 conservation plan for the bird.

Posted: February 5, 2016, 9:42 pm

LyondellBasell, Houston, has completed the sale of its wholly owned subsidiary Petroken Petroquimica Ensenada SA (Petroken), which operates a 180,000-tonne/year polypropylene plant in the port city of Ensenada, 50 km southeast of Buenos Aires.

Posted: February 5, 2016, 9:35 pm

Mark A. Plake has been named president of Holly Logistic Services LLC, the ultimate general partner of Holly Energy Partners, Dallas.

Posted: February 5, 2016, 6:59 pm

Far less oil production has been shut in worldwide than generates negative cash flow because of the slump in crude oil prices, reports Wood Mackenzie.

Posted: February 5, 2016, 6:51 pm

Nagarjuna Oil Refinery Ltd. (NORL) has ended discussions with Netoil (Singapore) (Pte.) Ltd. for the sale of its interest in subsidiary Nagarjuna Oil Corp. Ltd. (NOCL) in a deal that would have advanced the long-stalled construction of NOCL’s planned 6 million-tonne/year refinery at Cuddalore, Tamil Nadu, about 180 km south of Chennai, India, on the Bay of Bengal.

Posted: February 5, 2016, 5:36 pm

The Pennsylvania Environmental Quality Board (EQB), an independent entity responsible for adopting environmental regulations, approved revisions to the commonwealth’s oil and gas drilling regulations by a 15-4 vote, the Department of Environmental Protection announced in Harrisburg. The Feb. 3 action drew immediate fire from the Pennsylvania Independent Oil & Gas Association (PIOGA).

Posted: February 5, 2016, 5:26 pm

Linn Energy LLC, Houston, said on Feb. 4 that it’s exploring “strategic and financial alternatives” to improve the firm’s capital structure and long-term outlook in the midst of the prolonged crude oil price slump.

Posted: February 5, 2016, 4:17 pm

Light, sweet crude oil prices dropped modestly, settling under $32/bbl on the New York market Feb. 4 in what has been a volatile week for oil prices. Despite some price gains earlier in the week, traders appear primarily focused on world crude oversupply.

Posted: February 5, 2016, 3:56 pm

The Obama administration proposed a $10/bbl tax on crude oil to help pay for its plan to create a 21st Century Clean Transportation System. Officials from national oil and gas associations immediately said it was a serious mistake.

Posted: February 4, 2016, 10:46 pm

Suncor Energy Inc., Calgary, has cut its capital guidance for 2016 to $6-6.5 billion from $6.7-7.3 billion reported in November.

Posted: February 4, 2016, 9:23 pm

The Obama administration should rely more on oil and gas industry innovation and cooperation, and less on heavier federal regulation, as it moves into its final year, an American Petroleum Institute official recommended.

Posted: February 4, 2016, 7:00 pm

Occidental Petroleum Corp., Houston, said on Feb. 4 that its 2016 capital program is expected to be “no more than $3 billion with production growth of [2-4%] from ongoing operations.”

Posted: February 4, 2016, 6:57 pm

Total SA has signed a binding heads of agreement with ENN LNG Trading Co. Ltd. for the delivery of 500,000 tonnes/year of LNG for 10 years. The deliveries will be sourced from Total’s global LNG portfolio and are expected to begin in 2018 after completion of ENN’s Zhoushan LNG receiving terminal.

Posted: February 4, 2016, 6:18 pm

ConocoPhillips, Houston, has lowered its capital expenditures guidance for 2016 to $6.4 billion from $7.7 billion and operating cost guidance to $7 billion from $7.7 billion. The previously determined spending levels were outlined in December.

Posted: February 4, 2016, 6:05 pm

AGL Energy Ltd., Sydney, has decided to quit the natural gas exploration and production business, a move that includes walking away from several controversial coal seam gas (CSG) projects.

Posted: February 4, 2016, 5:44 pm

Norway’s Statoil ASA is reducing its organic capital expenditure to $13 billion in 2016 from $14.7 billion in 2015, the company reported.

Posted: February 4, 2016, 5:39 pm

Crude oil prices soared by more than $2/bbl on both the New York and London markets Feb. 3, which analysts attributed to a sliding dollar. The oil price rally came despite a bigger-than-expected gain in US crude oil supplies.

Posted: February 4, 2016, 4:10 pm

The US Pipeline & Hazardous Materials Safety Administration issued an advisory bulletin for natural gas storage facility operators. It urged them to closely monitor operations to identify the potential for leaks and failures caused by corrosion, chemical or mechanical damage, or other material deficiencies in piping, tubing, casing, valves, and other associated facilities.

Posted: February 3, 2016, 6:45 pm

Petroleos Mexicanos (Pemex) reported liquid hydrocarbons production in 2015 of 2.59 million b/d, down 7% compared with the 2014 total and 10% compared with the 2013 total.

Posted: February 3, 2016, 6:36 pm

Light, sweet crude for March delivery settled under $30/bbl on the New York Mercantile Exchange Feb. 2 but prices were on the rise in early Feb. 3 trading awaiting release of the weekly government inventory, which showed a bigger-than-expected gain.

Posted: February 3, 2016, 3:59 pm

Total SA has signed long-term agreements with Indonesia’s state-owned PT Pertamina for LNG supply over a period of 15 years starting in 2020.

Posted: February 2, 2016, 9:12 pm

Cabot Oil & Gas Corp., Houston, has set its 2016 capital budget at $325 million, down 47% from its preliminary budget reported in October and 58% from its 2015 capital program.

Posted: February 2, 2016, 9:07 pm

BP PLC reported plans for organic capital expenditures of $17-19 billion for each of 2016 and 2017, with 2016 falling into the lower end of that range. The company spent $18.7 billion in 2015.

Posted: February 2, 2016, 6:48 pm

ExxonMobil Corp. plans to reduce its capital and exploration expenditures in 2016 by 25% compared with that of 2015 to $23.2 billion.

Posted: February 2, 2016, 5:14 pm

Alberta will award “royalty credits” to petrochemical manufacturers in a competitive application system designed to add value to natural gas produced in the province.

Posted: February 2, 2016, 5:06 pm

Depressed crude oil prices won’t necessarily doom ambitious transportation projects west from the Black Sea and beyond if participating countries and investors don’t panic, speakers said at an Atlantic Council forum.

Posted: February 2, 2016, 4:56 pm

Gunvor Group Ltd., Geneva, has completed a deal to take 100% ownership of Kuwait Petroleum International Ltd.’s (KPI) 88,000-b/d refinery and supporting product distribution network in Rotterdam, the Netherlands.

Posted: February 2, 2016, 4:02 pm

Light, sweet crude for March delivery settled down $2 on the New York Mercantile Exchange Feb. 1 while the Brent contract for April dropped $1.75 on the London market on fading hopes that major oil producers would cut production despite some talk about that from Russia days ago.

Posted: February 2, 2016, 3:53 pm

Anadarko Petroleum Corp., The Woodlands, Tex., anticipates an initial 2016 budget of $2.8 billion, a reduction of 50% from the company’s actual 2015 capital investments and almost 70% from the 2014 total.

Posted: February 1, 2016, 10:48 pm

Murphy Oil Co. Ltd. (MOCL), the Canadian subsidiary of Murphy Oil Corp., has agreed to acquire operated and nonoperated working interest of production, acreage, infrastructure, and facilities in the Kaybob Duvernay area and liquids-rich Montney area in Alberta from Athabasca Oil Corp. for $475 million (Can.). The two firms are forming a joint venture to develop the areas.

Posted: February 1, 2016, 10:07 pm

A federal rule for offshore oil and gas operations could have bigger adverse impacts than the US Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement projected when it proposed the regulation in April 2015, the Gulf Economic Survival Team announced.

Posted: February 1, 2016, 9:58 pm

Petroleo Brasileiro SA (Petrobras) said it has approved a new organizational structure and governance model “as part of the company’s response to the new reality of the oil and gas sector.”

Posted: February 1, 2016, 9:55 pm

Partners in giant Leviathan natural gas field awaiting development in deep water offshore Israel have signed an agreement to sell as much as 6 billion cu m of gas to an Israeli power generator.

Posted: February 1, 2016, 8:55 pm

Wholly owned subsidiaries of DYAS BV, a privately owned Dutch company, has agreed with Lundin Malaysia BV to farm into three production-sharing contracts covering acreage offshore Malaysia.

Posted: February 1, 2016, 8:15 pm

Alberta’s Royalty Review Advisory Panel has eased concerns of the oil and gas industry by recommending new attention to cost rather than aggressive rate increases.

Posted: February 1, 2016, 6:36 pm

BP PLC has appointed Lamar McKay to the new position of deputy group chief executive as part of the company’s reorganization that will follow the May 1 retirement of Katrina Landis, executive vice-president of corporate business activities.

Posted: February 1, 2016, 6:33 pm

BP Trinidad & Tobago (BPTT) has reported that it will invest $1.5 billion in Trinidad and Tobago this year in spite of falling oil prices and declining revenue, BPTT Pres. Norman Christie said.

Posted: February 1, 2016, 6:05 pm

Statoil Uruguay BV has agreed to acquire 15% working interest in exploration Block 14 offshore Uruguay from Total E&P Uruguay BV.

Posted: February 1, 2016, 4:41 pm

Despite its being an election year, Congress still is an important part of Washington oil and gas associations’ 2016 federal strategies. But those efforts will need to reflect changes in US Senate and House dynamics in 2015 and earlier, association officials told OGJ.

Posted: February 1, 2016, 4:34 pm

Royal Dutch Shell PLC has entered into a conditional agreement to sell its majority interest in Shell Refining Co. (FOM) Bhd. (SRC), including the 125,000-b/d refinery in Port Dickson, Malaysia, to Malaysia Hengyuan International Ltd. (MHIL), a subsidiary of China’s Shandong Hengyuan Petrochemical Co. Ltd. (SHP), Shandong.

Posted: February 1, 2016, 4:10 pm

Light, sweet crude for March delivery gained 40¢ on Jan. 29 to settle at $33.62/bbl, marking the New York Mercantile Exchange’s highest closing since Jan. 6. Brent crude oil rose 85¢ to $34.74/bbl on the London market, its highest settlement since Jan. 5.

Posted: February 1, 2016, 3:30 pm

A new study uses shear tests and seepage-stress analysis in north China's Liushagang formation to create a model that predicts collapsing pressure and avoids costly drilling delays in hard, brittle shales.

Posted: February 1, 2016, 2:51 pm

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has proposed regulations for methane and volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions from the oil and gas industry that would place a number of new requirements on upstream operations, including capturing or combusting emissions during well completions, monitoring for fugitive emissions from equipment leaks, and making needed repairs.

Posted: February 1, 2016, 2:39 pm

Considering the growing importance of North American shale gas in the last 10 years and the difficulty in characterizing these reservoirs, petroleum data-driven analysis could help develop predictive well-performance models, leading to rapid evolution of scoping studies.

Posted: February 1, 2016, 2:35 pm

Hess Corp. is planning a 2016 capital and exploratory budget of $2.4 billion, a 40% reduction from its 2015 actual spend of $4 billion and 20% below its preliminary 2016 guidance of $2.9-3.1 billion provided in October.

Posted: February 1, 2016, 7:41 am

Sandridge Energy Inc., Oklahoma City, agreed to reduce the volume of wastewaste going into disposal wells in the Medford and Cherokee-Byron areas. After negotiating with the Oklahoma Corporation Commission (OCC), Sandridge agreed to convert some disposal wells to research.

Posted: February 1, 2016, 7:39 am

Global energy demand will increase 25% between 2014 and 2040, driven by population growth and economic expansion, according to ExxonMobil Corp.'s 2016 Outlook for Energy. Most of this growth will occur in nations outside the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.

Posted: February 1, 2016, 7:36 am

Despite prognostications of constrained capital and distressed asset sales during the year, global oil and gas mergers and acquisitions declined sharply in 2015 compared with activity in 2014, according to a report from Deloitte LLP.

Posted: February 1, 2016, 7:33 am

Pennsylvania's government developed a four-point strategy to limit methane emissions from natural gas operations in the state.

Posted: February 1, 2016, 7:31 am

The US Department of the Interior proposed regulations aimed at reducing methane emissions from oil and gas operations on public and tribal lands.

Posted: February 1, 2016, 7:15 am

On Feb. 18, 2012, The Economist declared: "The home of laissez-faire is being suffocated by excessive and badly written regulations." These words are still valid today.

Posted: February 1, 2016, 7:13 am

As 2015 became 2016, one inevitable question was whether the US oil and gas industry was a victim of its own success. The domestic supply outlook was as bright as ever, thanks to continued production growth from unconventional technologies.

Posted: February 1, 2016, 7:10 am

Without context, the senseless can seem sensible.

Posted: February 1, 2016, 6:39 am

The ties between infrastructure, politics, and terrorism lie close to the surface. Infrastructural development falls largely on a given country's politicians and bigger companies.

Posted: February 1, 2016, 6:37 am

Public-sector refining firms Indian Oil Corp. Ltd. (IOCL), Bharat Petroleum Corp. Ltd. (BPCL), and Hindustan Petroleum Corp. Ltd. (HPCL) are planning a joint investment for construction of a grassroots megarefinery to be built along the coast of India’s Maharashtra state.

Posted: January 29, 2016, 7:06 pm

North American exploration and production companies enter a year of commodity-price weakness with just 15% of their total production hedged, reports IHS Energy.

Posted: January 29, 2016, 7:03 pm

Phillips 66 reported fourth-quarter 2015 earnings of $650 million, a steep decline from earnings of $1.58 billion in the third quarter due in large part to lower realized refining margins. Its adjusted earnings, excluding special items of $60 million, were $710 million.

Posted: January 29, 2016, 5:36 pm

Chevron Corp. ended 2015 with the company’s first quarterly loss since 2002, posting full-year earnings of $4.6 billion, compared with earnings of $19.2 billion in 2014.

Posted: January 29, 2016, 4:22 pm

Light, sweet crude prices settled above $33/bbl on the New York market Jan. 28 and Brent crude oil did the same on the London market. The gains followed comments by Russian energy officials that they would talk with the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries next month about output.

Posted: January 29, 2016, 3:19 pm

Alaska Gov. Bill Walker (I) notified three Alaska North Slope oil and gas producers that he will consider other ways to generate revenue for the state if more progress is not made on reaching operating milestones for the Alaska Liquefied Natural Gas Project before the legislature completes its regular session.

Posted: January 28, 2016, 9:54 pm

A “sharp contraction” of crude oil prices and “limited access to the capital markets” in 2015 resulted in the least fourth-quarter merger and acquisition activity in the US oil and gas industry in 5 years, according to analysis from PwC US.

Posted: January 28, 2016, 6:51 pm

Athabasca Oil Corp. has agreed with the Canadian unit of Murphy Oil Corp. to jointly develop the Duvernay and Montney in the Kaybob area in west-central Alberta. The transaction is valued at $475 million (Can.)

Posted: January 28, 2016, 5:54 pm

The shareholders of both Royal Dutch Shell PLC and BG Group PLC have approved the proposed merger of the two companies, and the deal is set to close on Feb. 15, some 10 months after it was first reported.

Posted: January 28, 2016, 4:29 pm

Light, sweet crude oil prices settled above $32/bbl on the New York market Jan. 27 while Brent crude prices settled above $33/bbl. Analysts attributed the price support to speculation that some major producers might consider cutting oil output.

Posted: January 28, 2016, 4:09 pm

Total US petroleum deliveries, a measure of consumer demand, averaged 19.7 million b/d in December, a 1.1% increase over December 2014, according to the American Petroleum Institute’s latest Monthly Statistical Report. The level reached was the highest December total in 5 years.

Posted: January 27, 2016, 8:17 pm

The Colorado Oil & Gas Conservation Commission issued new rules aimed at enhancing local communities’ participation in locating and planning for future oil and gas operations. The rules require operators to notify local governments earlier when activity will be adjacent to communities, call for additional mitigation measures and best management practices there, and encourage sharing of more information between producers and residents.

Posted: January 27, 2016, 6:00 pm

Noble Energy Inc., Houston, is beginning 2016 with a capital program of $1.5 billion, about 50% lower compared with that of 2015 pro-forma for the Rosetta Resources Inc. merger.

Posted: January 27, 2016, 5:26 pm

Chris Cox has been named head of exploration and production for Centrica PLC. Cox has worked for BG Group, Chevron Corp., and Amerada Hess in North Sea operating roles.

Posted: January 27, 2016, 5:13 pm

Light, sweet crude prices rose by more than $1/bbl on the New York market Jan. 26 to settle above $31/bbl in a volatile week for oil prices while traders and analysts awaited release of the weekly government crude oil and product inventory, which showed a smaller-than-expected gain in crude.

Posted: January 27, 2016, 5:02 pm

Carrier Energy Partners, Sugar Land, Tex., has acquired certain US Sugarloaf shale assets in the Eagle Ford area in South Texas from Sydney-based AWE Ltd. for $190 million in cash.

Posted: January 27, 2016, 4:54 pm

Royal Dutch Shell PLC has entered discussions with China’s Shandong Hengyuan Petrochemical Co. Ltd. (SHP), Shandong, regarding the possible sale of subsidiary Shell Overseas Holdings Ltd.’s (SOHL) majority interest in Shell Refining Co. (FOM) Bhd.’s (SRC) 125,000-b/d refinery in Port Dickson, Malaysia.

Posted: January 27, 2016, 3:53 pm

Total SA has acquired a 70% interest in the leading fuel retailer of the Dominican Republic from Putney Capital Management, which retains 30%. Terms weren’t disclosed.

Posted: January 27, 2016, 3:35 pm

Falling expectations for oil and gas prices have further eroded the producing industry’s financial outlook.

Posted: January 27, 2016, 3:30 pm

Continental Resources Inc., Oklahoma City, has reported a capital expenditures budget for 2016 of $920 million, a 66% reduction from the planned $2.7 billion for 2015.

Posted: January 26, 2016, 10:38 pm

Crude oil production in Texas during 2015 totaled 1.27 billion bbl despite dramatic declines in permitting, drilling, and completions, according to the Texas Petro Index (TPI) from the Texas Alliance of Energy Producers (TAEP).

Posted: January 26, 2016, 9:31 pm

BlueStone Natural Resources II LLC, Tulsa, has won a Bankruptcy Court-approved auction for assets belonging to Quicksilver Resources Inc., Ft. Worth, and its US subsidiaries following a marketing process that began last September (OGJ Online, Sept. 18, 2015).

Posted: January 26, 2016, 7:10 pm

Hess Corp. is planning a 2016 capital and exploratory budget of $2.4 billion, a 40% reduction from its 2015 actual spend of $4 billion and 20% below its preliminary 2016 guidance of $2.9-3.1 billion provided in October.

Posted: January 26, 2016, 6:01 pm
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