Crude oil prices dropped nearly $2/bbl for December delivery on the New York market Oct. 22 after a weekly US government report showed a larger-than-expected increase in crude oil inventories.
US Sen. Ronald L. Wyden (D-Ore.), who chaired the Energy and Natural Resources Committee before taking the Finance Committee’s helm in early February, urged the US Department of Energy to begin reevaluating the US Strategic Petroleum Reserve as the Government Accountability Office recommended in an Oct. 20 report.
Alaska’s Division of Oil and Gas awarded two Beaufort Sea leases pending since 2011 and published tract maps for Nov. 19 Beaufort Sea and North Slope lease sales that accurately reflect the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge’s western boundary following a thorough review.
Convening after the sudden death of Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Christophe de Margerie, the board of Total SA has unanimously appointed Thierry Desmarest as chairman and Patrick Pouyanne as CEO and president of the executive committee.
Crude oil prices rebounded slightly on the New York market Oct. 21 as traders and analysts anticipated a build in US crude oil inventories for the week ended Oct. 17. Separately, a better-than-expected economic indicator from China also supported Oct. 21 oil prices.
The Chinese government and China National Petroleum Corp. are reviewing their relationships with Sudan and South Sudan following years of growth that changed both sides, a researcher said at Johns Hopkins University’s School for Advanced International Studies.
California’s Bay Area Air Quality Management District (BAAQMD), the public agency responsible for regulating stationary sources of air pollution in the nine counties that surround San Francisco Bay, has launched an aggressive plan to cut emissions from the region’s five refineries.
Two federal agencies’ proposals to change the Endangered Species Act’s critical habitat designation procedures potentially could cause serious damage to the general economy, warned nearly a dozen US business groups, including two oil and gas entities.
Noble Energy Inc. reported that the company has elected David L. Stover as president and chief executive officer. Stover succeeds Charles D. Davidson as chief executive officer. Davidson earlier this year announced plans to retire effective May 1, 2015.
In a long-awaited move, India’s Cabinet Committee of Economic Affairs (CCEA) has approved a natural gas pricing policy that modifies the Rangarajan formula.
Christophe de Margerie, chairman and chief executive officer of Total SA, died Oct. 20 in the crash of a private airplane at Vnukovo Airport in Moscow.
Cairn India Ltd. has appointed Mayank Ashar as managing director and chief executive officer, effective Nov. 17.
Crude oil prices fell only slightly on the New York market Oct. 20 after the US light, sweet crude benchmark tumbled much of last week and has been down for 3 consecutive weeks while Brent crude oil prices have declined on the London market for 4 consecutive weeks.
-Momentum appears to be shifting in the oil and gas industry's favor in Colorado after Gov. John Hickenloooper brokered a compromise that keeps off the November ballot two initiatives that were poised to place greater restrictions on development, and legal and political setbacks befell separate local measures that sought to restrict or ban hydraulic fracturing.
Mexico plans to publish its technical bidding requirements in November, outlining logistics for the first upstream bid round, according to hydrocarbon officials visiting Houston to update the oil and gas industry on the country’s progress in opening up its assets to non-Mexican companies.
Removing US crude oil export restrictions would likely increase crude prices and decrease consumer fuel prices, the Government Accountability Office said in a recent report. It also called for a reexamination of the size of the US Strategic Petroleum Reserve.
Crude oil futures prices in New York ended the week slightly higher, but still remained below $83/bbl.
Tesoro Corp. affiliate Tesoro Logistics LP has agreed to acquire QEP Resources Inc.’s wholly owned subsidiary QEP Field Services LLC (QEPFS), including its 58% partnership interests in QEP Midstream Partners LP for $2.5 billion.
Alaska is seeking priority conveyance of nearly 20,000 acres of uplands at the western boundary of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, the state’s Department of Natural Resources reported on Oct. 17 in Anchorage. It previously requested the acreage, between the Staines and Canning rivers, under the Alaska Statehood Act and Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act.
Governments of major producing countries and six multinational oil and gas companies formed a methane emissions reduction taskforce during the United Nation's global climate change summit in New York.
Europe's natural gas supply mix likely won't change much without drastic policy interventions despite recent renewed concern over instability in Ukraine, a new Brookings Institution policy brief concluded.
National Fuel Gas Co. Chief Executive Officer Ronald J. Tanski was elected as chairman of the Interstate Natural Gas Association of America for a 1-year term during the trade association's annual board meeting on Oct. 10.
The International Energy Agency's Oil Market Report (OMR) for October continues to reduce its forecast of global oil demand for 2014 by 200,000 b/d from the previous month, to 92.4 million b/d.
The BlueGreen Alliance, a coalition of 10 national labor unions and 5 environmental organizations, urged the Obama administration to adopt a strong methane reduction strategy with the US oil and gas industry as a major component.
National Ocean Industries Association Pres. Randall B. Luthi takes a back seat to no one when it comes to applauding increased onshore unconventional oil and gas production's contribution to the nation's dramatically improved energy outlook.
As oil prices fall, speculation naturally arises about winners and losers in the event a decline of the moment becomes something more severe.
Wild Well Control Inc., a subsidiary of Superior Energy Services, has completed a subsea capping stack stationed in Singapore to serve the area during a deepwater well control incident. The company's first unit resides in Aberdeen.
Total US petroleum deliveries, a measure of demand, averaged 18.6 million b/d last month, down 3.5% from September 2013, as stated in the latest monthly statistics from the American Petroleum Institute. For the third quarter, petroleum deliveries fell 0.9% from the same period last year.
The New York Mercantile Exchange November crude oil contract gained 92Â¢ on Oct. 16, closing at $82.70/bbl. The December contract price rose $1.01 to $81.95/bbl.
Veresen Inc., Calgary, has named Elizabeth Spomer as president and chief executive officer of Jordan Cove LNG LLC and executive vice-president of Veresen.
With one third of the Mexican government's budget funded by PetrÃ³leos Mexicanos (Pemex), a decline in the state-owned oil company's production hits the government hard.
David Lawler has accepted the role of chief executive officer of BP PLC.'s Lower 48 Onshore business and resigned his role as executive vicepresident and chief operating officer of SandRidge Energy Inc.
Merger and acquisition activity in the US oil and gas industry jumped in the second quarter of 2014, and nearly half of total deal value was related to shale plays, according to the Energy Practice of PwC.
Bill Barrett Corp. has agreed to divest the majority of its acreage in the Powder River basin and its remaining position in the Gibson Gulch area in the Piceance basin to undisclosed parties in agreements valued at $757 million.
ATP Infrastructure Partners LP (ATP-IP) agreed to pay a $1 million fine and perform corrective measures to resolve federal claims that it violated the Clean Water Act (CWA) and Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (OCSLA), the US Department of Justice, Environmental Protection Agency, and Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) jointly announced.
Goodrich Petroleum Co. reported encouraging results from another well targeting the emerging Tuscaloosa Marine shale (TMS) in Louisiana and Mississippi.
Newfield Exploration Co. has agreed to sell its Granite Wash assets to Templar Energy LLC for $588 million.
Capital spending in the Wolfcamp tight oil formation is on track to exceed $12 billion in 2014-making the play the second highest area of investment among US unconventional plays, according to analysis by Wood Mackenzie.
The government of Nova Scotia plans to introduce legislation this fall that would prohibit high-volume hydraulic fracturing.
Rex Energy Corp. has signed a $120 million deal to acquire 207,000 net acres prospective to the Marcellus, Upper Devonian Burkett, and Utica shales in Pennsylvania and Ohio from Swepi LP, an affiliate of Royal Dutch Shell PLC.
The recent acquisition of Kodiak Oil & Gas Corp. by Whiting Petroleum Corp. is set to create the largest producer and most active driller in the Bakken-Three Forks tight oil play.
Antero Resources has surpassed 1 bcfd of net gas-equivalent (bcfed) production from the Marcellus and Utica shales and secured the gas processing and pipeline capacity needed to meet aggressive production growth targets.
Marcellus shale companies expect to hire more than 2,000 new employees in 2014, according to a workforce survey released by the Marcellus Shale Coalition (MSC).
The American Gas Association’s board of directors approved creation of a nationwide peer safety and operations review program beginning in 2015. It will let the more than 200 local distribution companies in AGA observe their peers, share leading practices, and identify opportunities to better serve customers and communities, the trade association said.
Royal Dutch Shell PLC has signed two separate deals that will enable it to exit its positions in the Haynesville shale and Pinedale field in exchange for $2.1 billion in cash and additional acreage in the Utica and Marcellus shales in Pennsylvania.
Improvements in drilling and completion techniques, along with additions of regional pipeline and processing capacity, are expected to propel Marcellus shale production even higher in coming years.
Pioneer Natural Resources Co., Irving, Tex., has agreed to sell all of its Barnett shale assets in North Texas to an undisclosed private company for $155 million.
The US Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) has proposed Gulf of Mexico central planning area Lease Sale 235 for March 2015 in New Orleans. BOEM will make available 7,477 tracts covering 43.5 million acres offshore Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama.
Southwestern Energy Co., Houston, has agreed to acquire assets in the southern Marcellus shale and a portion of the eastern Utica shale in West Virginia from Chesapeake Energy Corp., Oklahoma City, for 5.375 billion.
Crude oil prices fell only slightly on the New York market Oct. 15 after plunging the previous day. Brent crude oil prices fell by more than $1/bbl on Oct. 15, and the average for the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries basket dropped more than $3/bbl.
Federal proposals to amend portions of the Endangered Species Act would significantly reshape and further complicate the law’s critical habitat process, and unjustifiably expand two federal services’ authority to make such designations, the American Petroleum Institute and five other oil and gas industry associations said.
The head of an independent oil and gas company that in late June received one of the first two federal approvals to export condensate urged the US Department of Commerce to begin issuing similar permits to other applicants.
American Midstream Partners LP (AMP), Denver, has acquired Costar Midstream LLC from Energy Spectrum Partners VI LP and Costar management for $470 million. The deal closed Oct. 14.
Mountaineer Keystone Energy LLC, Pittsburgh, has completed the acquisition of equity interests in PDC Mountaineer LLC, a 50-50 joint venture PDC Energy Inc. and Lime Rock Partners LLC with interests in the Marcellus shale, for a total of $500 million.
Europe’s natural gas supply mix likely won’t change much without drastic policy interventions despite recent renewed concern over instability in Ukraine, a new Brookings Institution policy brief concluded. This effectively will ensure a continuing significant market share for Russia, it said.
BG Group has appointed Helge Lund as chief executive officer and as an executive director, effective Mar. 2, 2015. Lund has served as president and CEO of Statoil ASA since 2004.
Crude oil prices dipped by more than $3/bbl on both the New York and London markets Oct. 14, which analysts attributed to stagnant world oil demand growth. US light, sweet crude settled Oct. 14 under $82/bbl.
The US Bureau of Land Management’s Rock Springs field office is seeking public comments on a proposal to develop up to 17 natural gas wells on as many as 5 well pads about 35 miles northwest of Baggs, Wyo., in Sweetwater County.
Methane inventories by the US Environmental Protection Agency, which underlie efforts to regulate emissions from hydraulic fracturing and other oil and gas work, overlook other, potentially larger sources of the greenhouse gas, a study by Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) suggests.
The International Energy Agency’s Oil Market Report (OMR) for October continues to reduce its forecast of global oil demand for 2014 by 200,000 b/d from the previous month, to 92.4 million b/d, in line with lower expectations of economic growth and the weak recent trend.
Woodside Petroleum Ltd., Perth, has farmed into the Tilapia production-sharing contract offshore Cameroon under an agreement with Glencore and Noble Energy Inc.
The Northern Territory government has put its weight behind a proposal to build an Alice Springs-to-Moomba natural gas pipeline. This would link the Northern Territory fields with the Moomba hub in South Australia that already has connections to Queensland, New South Wales, and (indirectly) Victoria.
Jim Skea, professor of sustainable energy at the Centre for Environmental Policy, Imperial College, is president-elect of the Energy Institute, London. He will be nominated for appointment to the position at the group’s annual general meeting in June 2015.
OAO Gazprom and China National Petroleum Corp. have signed a technical agreement for the cross-border section Power of Siberia natural gas trunkline.
Crude oil prices settled lower on the New York market and in London Oct. 13 while dropping yet again in early Oct. 14 trading after the International Energy Agency reduced its forecast for global oil-demand growth for 2014.
China National Petroleum Corp. (CNPC) and OAO Rosneft have signed an agreement for the extension of strategic cooperation on the Tianjin joint venture refinery project in northern China.
The BlueGreen Alliance, a coalition of 10 national labor unions and 5 environmental organizations, urged the Obama administration to adopt a strong methane reduction strategy with the US oil and gas industry as a major component.
Malaysia’s Petronas has purchased a 15.5% share in the Shah Deniz production-sharing agreement in Azerbaijan from Statoil ASA.
The New York Mercantile Exchange November crude oil contract gained 5Â¢ on Oct. 10, closing at $85.82/bbl. The December contract, meanwhile, dropped $1.48 to settle at $85.11/bbl.
Leaders of 16 national environmental organizations have asked US President Barack Obama to impose methane emissions limits on the US oil and gas industry.
International news for oil and gas professionals
Tesoro Corp. Chief Executive Officer Gregory J. Goff called for a review of the Jones Act, a federal law dating from the 1920s that requires US-produced goods moving between US ports to do so aboard US-flagged vessels.
Proposed federal crude-by-rail regulations should focus more on accident prevention and mitigation than tank-car redesigns and retrofits, two major oil industry trade associations separately said in comments submitted to the US Department of Transportation on Sept. 30.
The US Bureau of Land Management will offer oil and gas leases within the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska (NPR-A) at a sale on Nov. 19 in Anchorage, BLM's Alaska State Office said in an Oct. 3 Federal Register notice.
Encana Corp., Calgary, has agreed to acquire all of the issued and outstanding shares of common stock of Athlon Energy Inc., Ft. Worth, through an all-cash tender offer of $5.93 billion.
National Fuel Gas Co. Chief Executive Officer Ronald J. Tanski was elected as chairman of the Interstate Natural Gas Association of America for a 1-year term during the trade association’s annual board meeting on Oct. 10. He succeeds David J. Devine, president of Kinder Morgan Inc.’s central regional gas pipelines.
Crude oil markets continued a downward slide Oct. 9. Analysts with Barclays Research said in an oil market outlook Oct. 10 that prospects for global oil demand growth have weakened as of late. “As global oil demand growth shows signs of fatigue, crude oil suppliers are looking to Asia to absorb the surplus.”
Blackstone Energy Partners and Blackstone Group affiliates have formed Windy Cove Energy LLC with a commitment to invest as much as $700 million of equity to acquire and develop carbon dioxide enhanced oil recovery assets in the US.
Plans for the US Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) to amend the federal Endangered Species Act (ESA) would have significant adverse effects on western states’ economies without delivering a commensurate benefit to endangered species, the Western Energy Alliance (WEA) said in comments about the May 9 proposals.
Worldwide working gas capacity totaled 399 billion cu m (bcm) on Jan. 1, representing 5% growth over the previous year, according to Cedigaz’s latest Worlwide Underground Gas Storage (UGS) database.
Crude oil prices continued dropping on the New York market Oct. 8 after the US Federal Reserve indicated some concern that a strengthening dollar could weigh on the economy.
Mubadala Petroleum, Abu Dhabi, has appointed Mussabeh Al Kaabi, currently chief growth officer, as chief executive officer.
Ember Resources Inc., Calgary, has agreed to acquire the majority of the Clearwater assets in southern and central Alberta belonging to Encana Corp. for $605 million (Can.).
The US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has issued a final environmental impact statement (EIS) for Cheniere Energy Inc.’s proposed Corpus Christi LNG project. It said approval of the proposed project, with mitigation measures the EIS recommends, would ensure impacts in the area would be avoided or minimized, and not be significant.
The US Bureau of Land Management is seeking public comments on a proposed 3D seismic exploration project in Sweetwater County, Wyo. BLM will prepare an environmental assessment of the proposed project and accept comments to help identify potential issues, concerns, ideas, and alternatives until Oct. 17, its Rawlins field office said.
Arrow Energy Ltd. has received environmental approval from the Australian government for construction of its proposed 4,500-km Arrow Bowen project gas pipeline to link its coal seam gas (CSG) fields in the Bowen basin of Queensland to Gladstone on the central-east coast.
Niko Resources Ltd., Calgary, has appointed Kevin J. Clarke as chairman and interim chief executive officer. Clarke, who was appointed to the board in August, succeeds Wendell W. Robinson, who retired in September following the annual shareholder meeting.
With global demand forecasts being revised lower while supply continues to rise, North Sea Brent crude oil prices have fallen to about $91/bbl—the lowest level in more than 2 years and 21% lower than its 2014 daily peak of $115/bbl on June 19.
Crude oil prices on the New York market for November and December each dropped more than $1/bbl to close the Oct. 7 trading session, and analysts attributed the price dip to rising US production combined with recent downward revisions in global demand forecasts.
Weakening global demand and higher Libyan oil exports have driven down North Sea Brent crude oil spot prices to an average of $97/bbl in September, a decrease of $5/bbl from August and the first month Brent crude oil prices have fallen below $100/bbl since June 2012.
Average expenditures of US household for natural gas, heating oil, electricity, and propane are projected to decrease this winter heating season (Oct. 1-Mar. 31) compared with last winter, which was 11% colder than the previous 10-year average nationally, according to the US Energy Information Administration’s latest Winter Fuels Outlook.
Crude oil and natural gas pipeline systems in the US are growing at a very rapid pace as new infrastructure is introduced in an effort to optimize utilization of shale resources. Williams Cos., Tulsa, is an active participant in this growth. Pres. and Chief Executive Officer Alan Armstrong talked with Oil & Gas Journal regarding regulation’s role in this process and Williams’s growth plans during the International Pipeline Conference last week in Calgary.
Crude oil prices settled on the New York market Oct. 6 slightly above $90/bbl, and analysts said they expect prices will remain subdued pending this week’s US government reports on crude oil inventories and on other upcoming oil-demand forecasts.
US refiners will have the capacity by 2020 to process 3.1-4.3 million b/d more of light, tight crude oil (LTC) than in fourth-quarter 2013, according to a Baker & O’Brien Inc. study commissioned by Consumers & Refiners United for Domestic Energy (CRUDE).
Trinidad and Tobago's state-owned Petrotrin LLC has said its ultralow-sulfur diesel (ULSD) plant will begin production in second-quarter 2015.
A partnership of KKR Natural Resources (KKR) and Fleur de Lis Energy (FDL), Dallas, has agreed to acquire certain oil and gas properties in Ector and Midland Counties in West Texas’s Permian basin from Linn Energy LLC for $350 million. The deal is expected to close in the fourth quarter.
Italy’s Eni SPA has published its thirteenth edition of the World Oil & Gas Review, the annual statistics review of world oil and gas production, reserves, and consumption, with a particular focus on refining industry and crude quality.
The New York Mercantile Exchange November crude oil contract fell $1.27 on Oct. 3, closing at $89.74/bbl, while the December contract dripped $1.21 to $88.67/bbl.
Natural Resource Partners LP (NRP), Houston, has agreed to acquire nonoperated working interests in oil and gas properties in the Williston basin’s Bakken-Three Forks play from an affiliate of Kaiser-Francis Oil Co. for $340 million. The deal, effective Oct. 1, is expected to close in November.
Chevron Corp. said its Chevron Canada Ltd. unit plans to sell a 30% interest in its Duvernay shale play to Kuwait Foreign Petroleum Exploration Co.’s Kufpec Canada Inc. unit for $1.5 billion. Chevron will retain 70% and remain operator.