Sun Herald by Mary Margaret Halford. To former U.S. Sen. Trent Lott (John Fitzhugh-Sun Herald Photo; Lott with Mississippi Energy Institute president Patrick Sullivan), when it comes to discussing everything from jobs to national security in America, energy is a topic worth mentioning. "The great news story in America today is energy," Lott said Tuesday morning at the 53rd annual meeting of the Southern States Energy Board. "Even while our economy has been struggling along, there have been great things happening with energy." (Also, scroll down for yesterday's report. Alaska Governor Sean Parnell attended the event as Chairman of the OCS Governors Coalition.) -dh)
TO OUR TEXAS READERS: Consumer Energy Alliance’s third annual Energy Day Festival is THIS Saturday, October 19th from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Hermann Square in front of City Hall in Downtown Houston, Texas. The Alliance’s co-sponsor is the University of Houston (We ask: Is this a model that would work for CEA and other Alaskan and Canadian institutions? -DH)
* Free family festival includes
* Over 70 interactive exhibits and demonstrations showcasing energy technology, conservation, efficiency and energy careers.
* Music, food, games.
Why is STEM education important to Energy Day? Watch the video!
Today's Consumer Energy Alliance Energy News Links:
KHOU: Young energy innovators honored for their plan for Houston’s future - In the shadow of the sparkling towers that energy built, five young energy innovators are being honored for their plan for the future of Houston.
Examiner.com: 10th Annual ASES Houston Solar Tour Sat. Oct. 19 - The American Solar Energy Society (ASES) Houston Solar Tour, presented by the Houston Renewable Energy Group (HREG), will showcase eight Houston area homes, businesses and projects currently powered by solar energy onSaturday, October 19, from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Murfreesboro Post: Former congressman: Farmers impacted by climate change - A former U.S. congressman joined with area farmers Monday to call on state and federal officials to better address the issue of climate change, which they say has a significant impact on Tennessee agriculture.
Houston Press: The Keystone Pipeline, Another Victim of the Shutdown - It looks like the federal government will be back up and running soon, but the damage may already be done where the Keystone XL Pipeline is concerned. That's good news, bad news or that which doesn't much matter if you're against the pipeline, for it or politely indifferent, respectively.
Politico: Kentucky creates climate post as EPA rules loom - In Washington, Kentuckians are fighting on all fronts against President Barack Obama’s climate change agenda, but back home, the state government is taking a different tack. Coal-centric Kentucky now has its first assistant secretary for climate policy.
Bloomberg: TransCanada Expects U.S. Decision on Keystone XL by End of March - TransCanada Corp,. Canada’s second-largest pipeline company by market value expects a U.S. ruling on the Keystone XL pipeline in the first quarter of 2014.
Associated Press: ND wants answers on ruptured pipeline inspections - North Dakota officials are trying to determine if Tesoro Corp. knew about potential problems — including one deemed "serious" in documents obtained by The Associated Press — with a pipeline that leaked more than 20,000 barrels of crude oil in a wheat field in the northwestern part of the state.
Scientific American: Do Americans Understand Energy? Not Really. - The latest wave of the UT Energy Poll just came out (full disclosure: I am the director) and results highlight the large disconnect between energy and the American public. The poll is a nonpartisan, objective, and comprehensive nationwide survey covering topics from efficiency and voting behavior to climate change and hydraulic fracturing*. This time we included a few energy literacy questions to gauge where Americans are on important energy topics related to policy and the economy.
State Impact Texas: Boiling Hot: Why Fracking’s Gusher of Geothermal Energy is Wasted - There are thousands of oil & gas wells in Texas that tap into the earth’s supply of hot water, some of it a boiling hot 250 F. There are modern, high tech steam engines that could use the water to make electricity. There was a federally-funded experimental power plant that proved the technology could work in Texas.
Denver Post: Municipal fracking bans in Colorado should be voted down - Broomfield spent a great deal of time this year updating its oil and gas regulations in light of controversy over energy extraction on the Front Range. Ultimately, the Broomfield City Council approved rules that require companies seeking timely approvals to adopt a host of "best practices" that go well beyond state or federal law.
National Journal: Harold Hamm Down on California’s Monterey Shale - Oil executive Harold Hamm, who made billions tapping the vast Bakken oil field in North Dakota before other companies saw the potential, sounded a pessimistic tone about whether the industry will develop California's Monterey Shale formation, which is estimated to have possibly five times more oil.
State Impact Pennsylvania: On oil embargo’s 40th anniversary, has shale drilling changed the game? - Speaking to a ballroom packed with members of the natural gas industry at a conference in Philadelphia last month, Lt. Governor Jim Cawley recalled with disdain the days of waiting on gas lines to fill up cars, trucks, and lawn mowers. Some members of the audience nodded along, perhaps stirred by their own memories of 1973.
Charlotte Business Journal: Carolinas demand for Marcellus gas plays into pipeline expansion - Contracts to deliver 200,000 dekatherms of natural gas daily from the Marcellus shale fields to Piedmont Natural Gas Co. Inc. and PSNC Energy starting in 2015 play a significant role in justifying plans by Oklahoma-based Williams Partners for a $610 million expansion its Transco pipeline.
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Work in Findlay to map airport for gas - Marcellus Shale mapping soon will start in four townships to prepare for natural gas drilling at Pittsburgh International Airport. Seismic surveyor Precision Geophysical Inc. of Millersburg, Ohio, plans 2-D underground mapping for Consol Energy Inc., which has a $500 million deal with Allegheny County to drill about 50 wells around the airport.
San Antonio Business Journal: TxDOT finds $250 million to fix highways in the Eagle Ford and elsewhere - The Texas Department of Transportation could fund 70 highway maintenance and repair projects — including those in the Eagle Ford Shale counties — that the agency was unable to obtain money for during the last legislative session.
E & E News: Moving shale oil across melting tundra: huge and potentially risky business - When the sun shines directly on the Hudson Bay Railway (HBR), the tracks can expand, warp and buckle. Trains have to slow down to 9 miles an hour or even stop. Journeys can be delayed for hours.
|Calgary Herald BY LAUREN KRUGEL, CP. “I was not a huge supporter of how actively the federal government was a year or two ago in promoting pipeline projects for its interests and taking on some of the opposers,” Ian Anderson told an Calgary business audience on Wednesday.|
Comment: Alaskans can be proud of the leadership role Governor Sean Parnell has assumed as Chairman of the OCS Governors Coalition--in support of responsible domestic energy exploration and production. Here are photos of yesterday's meeting in Mississippi. -dh
It's A Wonderful Life"
At last Friday night's Alaska Support Industry Alliance annual meeting, Helvi Sandvik (NGP Photo) reviewed the, "...history of Alaska's oil industry ... like Clarence the Angel did for George Bailey in Frank Capra's classic film, 'It's a Wonderful Life'". (Other meeting photos.)
Sandvik, President of the multi-national development arm of NANA Regional Corporation operates with over 11,000 employees on four continents, eight countries and all 50 states with a payroll exceeding $ ¾ billion.
With a corporate mission to maximize economic growth and quality of life among other “core principles”, NANA is squarely in the business of supporting efforts of its Alaska Native shareholders to secure “Wonderful Lives” for themselves and future generations.
She showed that just as Clarence demonstrated how bleak "Potterville" would have been without George's influence, Alaska without the oil industry "definitely would have been a very different place."
Then she cautioned the audience that, "if we do not constantly remind people how blessed we are to have resource development in this State, our future may not be as bright as our past." To emphasize the point, she referred to declining oil production and the fact that Alaska North Slope (ANS) maintenance work on ageing facilities does not, "...add new barrels to the pipeline".
|Earlier, we reported on similar comments from another great Alaska Native leader, Alaska North Slope Borough Mayor Charlotte Brower (NGP Photo). "I applaud Governor Parnell, and the Alaska Legislature for the courage and confidence they displayed in the passage of Senate Bill 21. Passage of this bill will create and encourage investment in the oil and gas industry," she said.|
Then she touched on an issue we have often addressed here: the need for tax reform to create sustainable production and throughput of the Trans Alaska Pipeline System (TAPS).
Last spring the Legislature passed Senate Bill 21, an effort to reform the very predatory production tax which elevated the state to one of the highest taxing regimes in the free world--in one of the highest operating cost environments.
Sandvik said that following passage of tax reform, delayed projects are once again alive, "activity on the slope increased and optimism in our future was budding once again...."
She then warned that the voters' referendum to repeal tax reform has dampened that initial euphoria following passage of SB 21 and challenged her listeners to imagine what the state would be like without oil development.
She said that without oil, "In my view, Alaska Native Corporations would not exist". She then pointed out that over half of Alaska's largest companies are Alaska Native corporations.
"Since the passage of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act," she said, "many Alaska Native Corporations have developed businesses dedicated to serve the oil industry. For NANA, we consider ourselves to be a resource company at our core." She said the oil industry has been a good partner.
We have often reminded readers to be sensitive to the subsistence lifestyles of fellow citizens in rural Alaska. We have also acknowledged that a modern, subsistence lifestyle is supported by many state services funded by a state that receives over 90% of its operating budget from the declining ANS production.
Sandvik concluded with a moving story. "This summer in my village of Kiana," she recalled, "I was on the beach visiting with a couple of guys I have known all of my life. When I was still a teenager, both of them had found their way into a job on the North Slope, working two weeks on, two weeks off. They learned valuable skills. One of those men worked on the North Slope until he retired two years ago. The other took the skills he had developed on the North Slope and found a job as a truck driver closer to home, at NANA’s Red Dog Mine. He retired last year. Both of them were on the beach, fishing."
She observed that having a good lifestyle, job and income in one's hometown is a "wonderful life" to hope for.
"Like George Bailey," she concluded, "we want to be true to our values. We want to do right by our families. We want our communities to prosper.
"With the referendum to un-do tax reform on the table, we have our work cut out for us. We all need to step up to help Alaskans understand that tax reform is already working, and it holds the key to our future."
We observe that some environmental activists and others supporting repeal of tax reform think a 'wonderful life' may be an Alaska that resembles "Potterville". They are entitled to that opinion.
We, however, celebrate the courage, insight and initiative of leaders like Sandvik, Brower, responsible industry leaders, legislators and a dedicated Governor.
This united leadership -- in the face of a "Potterville" mentality -- can assure that Alaska has a sustainable flow of natural resource income to support the "wonderful lives" we all seek for ourselves, our families and the generations following us.
Sandvik ended her inspiring speech, deservedly, to cheers and an appreciative audience's standing ovation.
Other meeting photos:
"The Changing of the Guard: Outgoing Alliance President Doug Smith passes the gavel to incoming president David Lawer."
Sandra Yi-Fuller and Micky Becker of Shell Oil enjoy the evening.
Alliance Board Members Kevin Durling and Matt Melton, with Board Member Emeritus Lynn Johnson in background.
Scott Jepsen (L) of ConocoPhillips and David Lawer, First National Bank of Alaska
Today's Energy In Depth Links:
US world’s largest producer of oil in 2013 due to shale: report. Shale Energy Insider. PIRA Energy Group, a NYC-based energy markets consulting firm, reports that the US is the world’s largest producer of oil in 2013, according to data presented at PIRA’s recent Retainer Client Seminar held in New York City.
Why Oil & Gas Should (Continue to) Be Regulated By The States. Forbes, EID’s Blackmon. At the end of the day, proper regulation of the oil and gas industry is critical for everyone, including the industry. But over-regulation of it is counterproductive and only serves to create shortages and increase costs to the consumer.
U.S. shale crippling Russia’s energy empire. The National Interest. The April discovery of a new shale formation in Western Texas is another indication that the shale-gas revolution, which is rapidly changing the way that the world gas market operates, continues to press ahead. Russia is the world’s largest gas exporter, yet some experts believe that President Vladimir Putin and Russia’s energy establishment seem to be ignoring these changes—to their possible detriment.
Activists, industry starting to find consensus on shale. Christian Science Monitor. The quality of the debate over whether or how to tap shale gas and oil may have turned a corner this year as more groups and states find consensus-seeking ways to deal with the hard issues.
Eastern HF fights make their way out west. National Journal. California is almost 3,000 miles away from Pennsylvania, where anti-fracking activist and Gasland producer Josh Fox first gained his fame. But the fights playing out in the Northeast are now migrating west.
Energy among few bright spots on U.S. horizon – analysis. E&E News (sub. req’d). Domestic energy employment is one of a few bright spots on the horizon for the U.S. economy, according to a new analysis from Raymond James & Associates Inc.
Oil and gas deals stage comeback in 3rd quarter. E&E News (sub. req’d). Houston-based research firm PLS Inc. said deals reached $41.8 billion in the third quarter, up 59 percent. Analysts attributed the rise to surging activity from state-owned energy companies, including China National Petroleum Corp., which made the biggest deal of the quarter when it bought $5 billion in assets in Kazakhstan from ConocoPhillips Co.
Ex-BHP Billiton oil chief to head energy firm. E&E News (sub. req’d). Six months after retiring as chief of BHP Billiton Ltd.'s oil division, Mike Yeager is moving into a new post as chairman and CEO of a Houston oil firm.
Russian Minister says no shale development for now. Wall Street Journal. Russia does not deem it necessary to join the shale gas bandwagon and will not undertake large industrial scale production of shale gas, Alexander Novak, Minister of Energy said at a conference Wednesday.
Stormont row on the cards over HF in Northern Ireland. Belfast Telegraph. Environment Minister Mark H Durkan said that fracking would not happen on his watch. But yesterday Trade and Industry Minister Arlene Foster called on Mr Durkan, who recently replaced Alex Attwood on the Executive, to think again.
HF decision an 'executive issue'. BBC News. Any decision about fracking should be a matter for the Northern Ireland Executive as a whole, Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster has said.
South Africa Says HF Fluids Must Be Disclosed. Bloomberg. South Africa proposed regulations for hydraulic fracturing that would require disclosure of chemicals used and meet standards set by the American Petroleum Institute, a year after lifting a moratorium on the technique.
Mexico's Pemex voids $1.8 bil tender to import US shale gas. Platts. Mexican state oil and natural gas monopoly Pemex Tuesday voided what was to have been a $1.8 billion tender for a huge pipeline to bring US shale gas south of the border.
Saudi Arabia hopes spending blitz can turn around aging fields. E&E News (sub. req’d). Saudi Arabia's state-owned oil company hopes to boost production capacity by channeling "massive investments" into older fields. Khalid al-Falih, Saudi Aramco's CEO, said yesterday that the energy giant has steadily raised its capital budget over the last 10 years, to $40 billion.
Republican pushes 'energy resurgence' in launch of Alaska Senate bid. E&E News (sub. req’d). Alaska's Senate race heated up yesterday as Dan Sullivan, former head of the state Department of Natural Resources, declared his candidacy for the Republican nomination. At an Anchorage news conference, Sullivan stressed the need to expand Alaska oil and gas development and block "federal overreach" on state issues.
Anadarko VP on Colorado operations, floods, HF. Denver Business Journal, Q&A with Brad Holly. We are investing about $1.7 billion in the basin in 2013. We have 13 drilling rigs running and plan to drill about 400 wells this year. About 40 percent of the company's production comes from the basin, and it’s getting about 40 percent of the company’s capital investment this year.
CSU launches study on methane emissions. The Coloradoan. Colorado State University announced on Monday the launch of a “groundbreaking” study that will track natural gas processing facilities’ methane emissions, which environment experts say have a damaging effect on the Earth’s atmosphere.
Oil industry spends $250,000 to fight moratorium. The Coloradoan. "On behalf of the 100,000 Colorado families and the businesses across the state that rely on the energy industry, we are financially supporting the local groups who oppose the bans,” said Doug Flanders, director of policy and external affairs for COGA.
HF foes may key drive. Livingston Daily. Livingston County opposition to hydraulic fracturing could be instrumental in getting a proposal to ban “fracking” on the November 2014 ballot, the head of the ballot effort said.
Road closures, flaring mar Bakken Shale oil growth. E&E News (sub. req’d). The amount of natural gas burned in flares in North Dakota's Bakken Shale oil field rose in August, as the state's rapid production growth continued to strain its infrastructure.
CONSOL ramps up in its gas division. Tribune Today. After selling more gas and coal than it had expected during the recently ended quarter, CONSOL Energy now has signed an agreement for construction of Utica Shale infrastructure in Noble County, the company announced Tuesday.
Marcellus gas about to enter NYC, but New England is a tougher sell. E&E News (sub. req’d). A new "superhighway" pipeline opens next month to carry a large batch of natural gas primarily from the Marcellus Shale into New York City and surrounding suburbs, providing another outlet for the bottlenecked Appalachian production. But the road to New England isn't as open.
Carroll Co. Wants to Move Forward with HF in Maryland. Westminster Patch. Carroll's representatives say Maryland needs to move ahead with fracking in the state. Senator David Brinkley, R-Carroll, said he thinks Maryland should "move full speed ahead with it." Delegate Susan Krebs, R-Carroll, agrees, saying that Maryland is losing out on economic benefits by not getting on board. Krux('ns:centro', 'dataprovider.exelate');
CONSOL exceeded production and sales expectations for the quarter. The Examiner. "Our gas production growth is beginning to accelerate as we and our Marcellus Shale partner expand the rig count. We now have a record 8 rigs drilling in the Marcellus Shale on our JV acreage. For 2014, we and Noble Energy expect to be operating at least this many rigs," commented J. Brett Harvey, chairman and chief executive officer.
WVU Officials Present Findings After Monitoring Drilling Operations. WBOY 12. The West Virginia University Extension Service hosted a forum on Tuesday evening about monitoring Marcellus shale drilling operations. Dr. Michael McCawley with the WVU department of occupational and environmental health sciences gave a presentation on his findings from a study he did.
New Hanger ad features ‘Gasland’ residents. StateImpact PA. This week in political ads, Democratic gubernatorial candidate John Hanger has released a new web video positioning himself as a tough regulator of drilling. Hanger served as DEP Secretary under Governor Ed Rendell at the start of Pennsylvania’s natural gas boom.
New report highlights negative impacts of HF. Legislative Gazette. A recent report conducted by a New York-based environmental group highlights a slew of consequences hydraulic fracturing could potentially have on the state, including depleting water sources and increasing costs to small communities.
Why the Utica Shale Might Be the Best Play in the U.S. Daily Finance. It turns out the Utica is just saturated with a vast amount of recoverable natural gas and natural gas liquids. While it doesn't contain the high levels of oil of the Bakken or Eagle Ford, the amount of gas that can be extracted on a barrel of oil equivalent, or BOE, basis per well rivals or exceeds these two oil rich plays.
Mansfield Residents Upset About HF Near Their Homes. CBS Local. For two years, residents in one Mansfield neighborhood enjoyed the quiet, clean environment expected of suburbia. But now that Eagleridge Operating has started up its rig drills for natural gas in the area — all that has changed.
Ohio utility chief warns of reliance on gas over coal. Dayton Business Journal. Public Utilities Commission of Ohio Chairman Todd Snitchler is not a fan of a “dash-to-gas” mentality that calls for coal-rich states such as Ohio to make a quick switch to natural gas as the preferred fuel for its power plants, according to Columbus Business First.
Belmont County: Judge rules in favor of landowners. Farm and Diary. A Belmont County judge has ruled that one oil and gas company can not hold a lease in perpetuity. The case of Oxford Oil verses the West family is one of many lawsuits in Belmont County courts over oil and gas issues. The West family owns 97 acres in Wayne Township.
Group claims Ohio’s becoming ‘waste dump’ for HF companies. Columbus Business First. A soil recycling company has been thrown into the middle of a controversy over the disposal of drill cuttings from oil and natural gas wells, with its owner saying critics of the process are misinformed.
Booming oil towns prepare for bust. Tulsa World. The surge in oil drilling has drawn money and men like a magnet to run-down communities that haven't seen a boom since the 1980s. But leaders and residents here are increasingly mindful that the runaway riches tapped by hydraulic fracturing will eventually run out.
So far this year: 3,266 new wells in the Eagle Ford. San Antonio Express-News. Eagle Ford Shale drillers have started 3,266 new wells so far this year, according to the latest Baker Hughes Well Count.
Goodrich will boost 2013 capital budget, including Eagle Ford work. San Antonio Business Journal. Goodrich Petroleum Corp. says its boosting its 2013 capital expenditures to $255 million from a previous estimate of $230 million, including drilling and completion projects in the Eagle Ford Shale.
Kinder Morgan to build Gonzales plant. Gonzales Inquirer. Kinder Morgan Energy Partners, L.P. announced Friday it has entered into an agreement with a large Eagle Ford Shale producer to extend the Kinder Morgan Crude and Condensate (KMCC) pipeline farther into the Eagle Ford Shale in South Texas.
Sizing up the Permian. Investing Daily. The Permian Basin beneath west Texas and southeastern New Mexico receives a fraction of the press coverage accorded the Bakken and Eagle Ford, but it has more production potential than these two shale formations combined. The reasons it’s often overlooked are that the Permian is not just a shale oil play, nor is it a recently developed basin.
Wyo. oil industry fears effects of prolonged furloughs. E&E News (sub. req’d). Wyoming energy industry leaders worry an extended government shutdown could put a damper on business. The shutdown, which began Oct. 1, halted new production on federal lands -- a development that has had little impact on energy companies used to waiting more than a year to secure federal permits from the Bureau of Land Management.
Personal to readers: We confess to have been almost totally absorbed with our accountant in preparing over the last week for today's electronic filing to the IRS. We, therefore, are grateful to patient readers for your understanding and patience. -dh
Alaska Dispatch by Pat Forgey.
"Enstar's proposed (Gas Supply Agreement) immediately raised concerns because it would have increased natural gas costs to the company's captive ratepayers – a topic of special concern for the Murkowski administration," then-Attorney General David Márquez said following the decision.
* * *
The rejection of that contract may have been the beginning of the end for Marathon in Alaska. Over the next several years the company sold its interest in the Nikiski LNG export plant to co-owner ConocoPhillips, and sold its gas production operations to Hilcorp Energy Co.
South Central Alaska's Unjust and Unreasonable Gas Prices
We appreciate the legislative efforts of Representative Mike Hawker, House Speaker Mike Chenault and their colleagues, and the dedication of the current commissioners to secure adequate gas supplies for Alaska's major population centers. In late 2006 and early 2007 a three member majority of the five commissioners voted not to approve a gas contract with Marathon that would have provided secure energy supplies through 2016.
As the member of the commission with greatest oil and gas experience at the time, I carefully studied our record and argued fervently in favor of approving the gas supply agreement.
At one point in the proceeding one or two commissioners seemed determined to force Marathon into divulging proprietary costs of producing gas as if it were a public utility.
In the final weeks of 2006, the Commission could have stuck with its precedent, respected the arms length agreement between Enstar and Marathon and secured reasonably priced energy for consumers through 2016.
In retrospect, observers believe those dissents summarized why the contract should have been approved.
As a rough estimate, I believe that the Majority of three commissioners at that time, ended up costing Alaska consumers well over a half-billion dollars more than they would have paid under terms of the gas supply agreement Enstar and Marathon so responsibly advocated. The decision also dampened the ardor of potential and current Cook Inlet oil and gas producers.
To this day, I am grieved that I could not have summoned more persuasive arguments to prevent consumers over the years from paying 'unjust and unreasonable' rates resulting from a disastrous regulatory decision.
Do I harbor ill will for the three who made that decision? No. They were well intended. But as we see so often in this very real world: the road to hell is indeed paved with good intentions.
12-9-08 Harbour Speech to International Law Institute.
See Harbour Commentary, 1-30-09.
2-23-09 Harbour Speech to Alaska Association of Energy Economists.
7-30-09, Harbour Commentary: Regulatory Commission Should Know When To Hold 'em, Know When to Fold 'em, Know When to Walk Away and Know When to Run.
10-15-13: Current Petroleum News article by Alan Bailey.
We are delighted to provide TODAY'S Energy-In-Depth links:
Without shale, oil prices would be a lot higher. The Hill, Column. These would all seem to be good reasons for welcoming, with safeguards, the continued growth of oil and gas extraction from U.S. shale production. Its place as price stabilizer, in the midst of supply uncertainty and political volatility, deserves more recognition. Bringing new production to the markets, and thereby holding down oil prices, has critical importance both to America’s own recovery and to global economic prospects.
Weighing the Benefits and Trade-Offs of Natural Gas. Breakthrough Institute, Q&A. Shellenberger: I think the other thing is that gas is actually good for renewables. Most people aren't totally aware - they might be aware - solar and wind, obviously, are not always on. They're not considered baseload sources of power. So they need to have either a backup in the form of batteries which are very expensive, really not - we don't have utility scale batteries, really - or pump storage, such as using hydroelectric dams. And the very cheap gas that we've got over the last several years has not had a negative impact at all on renewables.
Balancing act needed to win with hydraulic fracturing. Houston Chronicle/Fuel Fix. The operator of the well can offer up drilling logs and core samples of rock formations taken during drilling. The operator’s engineers and geologists weigh in, but Musgrove says that in large part well owners rely on expertise of service companies, in this case Halliburton, to design the frac.
Analysts see production rebound in the works. E&E News (sub. req’d). Natural gas production could return to an upward trajectory next year as pricing improves and new pipeline projects come online, some analysts are predicting.
Activists urge EPA to keep pushing on CBM rule. E&E News (sub. req’d). U.S. EPA has proposed ditching the wastewater rules it's been developing since at least 2007 for coalbed methane production, saying gas prices are too low for drillers to implement them.
Canada's Energy Exports to Asia to Be Competitive. Wall Street Journal. Recent technological breakthroughs have led to surging North American output of both oil and gas, with much of the increase attributable to hydraulic fracturing, the process by which previously inaccessible hydrocarbons are released from shale rock formations. The glut has led to more than two dozen proposed new liquefied natural gas export facilities aimed at Asia in particular, pitting Canada and U.S. against each other and traditional gas suppliers, including No. 1 exporter Qatar, which enjoys particularly low production costs.
GDF Suez: Shale answer to Europe's woes. UPI. Opening up to shale oil and natural gas in Europe could ensure long-term energy security for the region, an executive at French energy company GDF Suez said.
UK has opportunity to follow US lead on shale energy, says Eversheds partner. The Lawyer. Jason Lovell, partner and oil and gas expert at Eversheds, has responded to a report that the US shale gas revolution will see it become the world’s largest oil producer.
Aramco eyes unconventional gas for power plant in Jazan. Saudi Gazette. Saudi Aramco will join the United States in becoming an unconventional gas producer, as it prepares to commit gas supply to a major power plant project in Jazan, northern Saudi Arabia.
Greenpeace Starts Legal Challenge to Stop U.K. Shale. Bloomberg. Environmental group Greenpeace started a legal challenge to shale-gas exploration in the U.K., encouraging landowners to use trespass laws to block drilling.
Saudi to join US as shale producer. Gulf Times. Opec heavyweight Saudi Arabia is preparing to be among the first countries outside North America to use shale gas for power generation and thereby save more of its crude oil for lucrative exports.
Ministries look to fine firms for sluggish shale gas exploration. Warsaw Business Journal. The Ministry of Economy and Ministry of Environment want to implement new regulations imposing fines on companies deemed to be carrying out their shale gas extraction projects too slowly.
Oil executives join Oxy board. E&E News (sub. req’d). A pair of oil executives were elected to the board of directors of California-based Occidental Petroleum Corp. The panel's newest members are Valero Energy Corp. Chairman and CEO William Klesse and ConocoPhillips Co. Chief Administrative Officer Gene Batchelder.
Activists to present program in Vienna. The Southern. A group opposed to the idea of hydraulic fracturing in Southern Illinois is hosting a public program tonight at the Vienna Public Library. The event, sponsored by SAFE (Southern Illinois Against Fracturing our Environment) goes from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the library, located at 401 Poplar Street in Vienna.
Investing in Montana's Bakken. Energy & Capital. Montana, and eastern Montana in particular, has been seeing a lot of changes in the past 18 months due to the oil and gas boom from the region’s Bakken shale. The question now is: will Montana see the same prosperity that we see in North Dakota?
N.D. pipeline spill prompts calls for better oversight. E&E News (sub. req’d). North Dakota needs to do more to ensure that pipelines can safely carry the rapidly expanding oil production from the Bakken Shale, state officials, transportation experts and environmentalists said after a pipeline leaked 20,600 barrels in a wheat field last week.
Drilling water wells a tactic to block HF. StateImpact PA. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports the “water well gambit,” drilling private water wells on sites slated for natural gas drilling, has been used for years, often by people and companies that don’t own the mineral rights to their properties.
Industry squares off against Dems pushing for tax. Fox News.The Marcellus Shale Coalition, that industry group, on Thursday blasted plans from a variety of Democrats’ gubernatorial hopefuls who say they want to increase the taxes paid by the natural gas industry for tapping the state’s natural gas reserves. NOTE: Philadelphia Inquirer also reports.
Greg Kozera: Time for a reality check on energy. Daily Mail, Op-Ed. I don't understand groups that want to see our oil and gas industry shut down so that we can become fully dependent on Russia, as Europe, is for its natural gas.
Jobs are great, but environment is key asset. Press & Sun-Bulletin, Op-Ed. Earlier this month, a newly formed upstate business association announced it was promoting fracking because of the 60,000 jobs it would bring in.
Application filed for gas pipeline expansion. Citizens Voice. The company managing the Marcellus pipeline that runs through Luzerne County is poised to expand the line again. On Sept. 30, Williams, the Texas-based company that owns the Transco pipeline, filed an application with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to expand its Leidy Line, which delivers gas from central Pennsylvania to customers from New York City to Alabama.
Rig count declines in Marcellus, grows in Utica. Pittsburgh Business Times. Baker Hughes Inc.'s latest data shows there are 85 rigs operating in the Marcellus Shale, down one from last week and down from the 90 operating a year ago. The Utica Shale rigs are at 38, up two from last week and up 12 from a year ago.
Natural Resource Group LLC Establishes Roots in the Marcellus Region. PR Newswire, Press Release. Natural Resource Group LLC, a leading consulting firm to the energy industry, created a base of operation in the Marcellus Shale gas play with the opening of a new office in Downtown Pittsburgh.
Activists to fight Ohio's wastewater rule. Akron Beacon Journal, Press Release. Frackfree Mahoning Valley (FFM) calls for an immediate halt to plans that Ohio state regulators are reportedly implementing by January 1 to use open pits or impoundments for toxic fracking waste.
A nearly complete train track at the Ohio Commerce Center is a key part of a $70 million fuel depot. Youngstown Vindicator. A nearly complete 12,000-foot loop train track at the Ohio Commerce Center in Lordstown is among the key components of what Halcon Resources Corp. says eventually may be a $70 million fuel depot.
Ohio must not rush to dive headfirst into ponds. Youngstown Vindicator, Editorial. As we’ve argued throughout the growth of fracking in our region, safety concerns must never take a backseat to economic self-interest. That’s why ODNR regulators should solicit input on the rules aggressively and take all the time needed to ensure impoundment ponds in the Buckeye State debut productively and safely.
Ohio Supreme Court to decide who regulates drilling – state or local communities. Columbus Business First. The Ohio Supreme Court has decided to hear an appeal of a case that could lead to local communities having the right to regulate oil and natural gas drilling within their boundaries, wresting that authority from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.
Gas reps: Pipeline creating jobs. Salem News. With natural gas exploration already under way in Columbiana County, two men representing two companies involved in the area were among those who spoke at a community informational meeting Monday sponsored by the Columbiana Area Chamber of Commerce.
Oil and gas executives gather to dissect Permian’s potential. Midland Reporter-Telegram. Despite the hustle and bustle of a thriving oil and gas industry, executives and interested parties from oil and gas companies in the area and from around the state and nation will pause to examine the Permian Basin’s future.
Texas startup digitizes oil and gas monitoring. E&E News (sub. req’d). WellAware aims to allow real-time electronic monitoring of everything from pipelines to oil storage tanks in South Texas' booming Eagle Ford Shale, via software originally developed for utilities.
Atlas Pipeline increases processing of natural gas in the Eagle Ford. San Antonio Business Journal. Natural-gas processor Atlas Pipeline Partners’ Eagle Ford Shale properties handled a 20-percent volume increase during the third quarter over volumes for the previous quarter, officials said in a company operational update.
Texas generators stay on sidelines in push for more combined heat and power use. E&E News (sub. req’d). The struggles of the CHP industry in Texas mirror those seen nationally. More states are adopting laws and incentive programs that are seeing companies adding distributed generating capabilities that use CHP in their facilities. CHP by natural-gas-powered generation is explicitly targeted in some state efforts.
Eagle Ford By Well Cost. Seeking Alpha. EOG will be drilling profitably in the Eagle Ford for decades to come. If you want Eagle Ford exposure, EOG isn't the only name, but it should always be on your short list.
|Alaska Support Industry Alliance Annual Meeting Keynote Speech: Helvi Sandvik (coming on 10-16-13....)|
Alaska Dispatch by Alex DeMarban. An impoverished group of Northwest Alaska villages whose residents hunt walrus and seals to survive have banded together to form a corporation to capitalize on an economic boom on the U.S. side of the Arctic, should that day ever come. ... The group's efforts will bear their first fruit early next week. Royal Dutch Shell agreed to sponsor a hazardous materials training workshop in Wales for 12 to 24 residents living in that village at the tip of the Bering Strait....
Calgary Herald by Dan Healing. A growing market in Mexico for U.S. natural gas will help bleed off the glut of shale gas that has ruined North American gas prices, according to a market update Tuesday from FirstEnergy Capital.
Houston Readers: Next Saturday, October 19, Consumer Energy Alliance and the University of Houston will conduct another Energy Day.
Free Family Festival with food, games and events along with fascinating exhibits dealing with science, energy, technology, innovation and conservation.
Where and When: 11 a.m. - 5 p.m. Hermann Square, City Hall, 900 Smith Street, Houston! www.energydayfestival.org. -dh
CBC News. Dozens of people showed up to a TransCanada public consultation on its pipeline proposal in Stittsville on Thursday evening.
Energy Daily. Extracting shale oil and gas reserves through controversial 'fracking' will in future require an environmental impact study, European lawmakers agreed Wednesday, despite opposition this will add to costs and hurt jobs.
Huffington Post by Joe McDonald. China passed the United States in September as the world's biggest net oil importer, driven by faster economic growth and strong auto sales, according to U.S. government data released this week.
From our friend at the U.S. Senate Energy Committee, Robert Dillon, (NGP Photo) we have this observation on the President's recent statements about energy:
We noted with interest President Obama’s statements about energy during the press conference he held (October 8, 2013) at the White House. After hailing the United States’ imminent overtaking of Russia as the world’s largest oil and natural gas producer something we should all be proud of he couldn’t resist taking several needless partisan jabs.
Yesterday, the House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources held an oversight hearing entitled “EPA vs. American Mining Jobs: The Obama Administration’s Regulatory Assault on the Economy.”
Alaska's Deputy Commissioner of Natural Resources, Ed Fogels (NGP Photo) testified that, "When federal agencies, such as the EPA, seek to expand their mining regulation they are often duplicating existing, well‐functioning programs."
Said the president: “You know, the Republicans say they¹re very concerned about drilling. They say Obama’s been restricting oil production, despite the fact that oil production is at its highest levels it has been in years and is continuing to zoom up. But they say, you know, the Democrats are holding back oil production in this country. Well, you know, one of the things that happens when the government's shut down is new drilling permits aren¹t processed. So why would the Republicans say to the folks who are interested in drilling for oil, sorry, we can¹t let those things be processed until we have some negotiations and we have some cover to do what we're supposed to be doing anyway? That doesn’t make sense.”
The president yet again implying that he¹s responsible for rising domestic production? The president attempting to shift blame away from his party, and onto Republicans, for somehow “holding back” production? As you might imagine, we have some issues with those claims.
The Boom Is Not Federal. We’ve been over this again and again: according to just about everyone except the president, the dramatic increase in American oil and natural gas production has not occurred on federal lands. Instead, it has taken place almost exclusively on state and private lands where the president has no influence. In fact, according to the non-partisan Congressional Research Service, “All of the increase from FY2007 to FY2012 took place on non-federal lands, and the federal share of total U.S. crude oil production fell by about seven percentage points.” Per that same report, both oil and natural gas production on federal lands actually fell yes, fell in both 2011 and 2012. So it’s not hard to understand why we assert that President Obama is “holding back” production: that is exactly what he has done.
The Shutdown Isn’t the Problem (Yet). Forgive us for thinking it slightly insincere of the president to suddenly claim concern about federal oil and natural gas permitting. We simply cannot reconcile how a nine-day-and-counting government shutdown compares to a nearly five-year-and-counting government slowdown in granting permission for producers to proceed. There is no question that federal permitting is slow and becoming more onerous as a result of this administration’s policies. Consider this: it took approximately 228 days for the average Application for Permit to Drill (APD) to be completed for federal BLM lands in Fiscal Year 2012 compared to just 10 days for a similar permit from the state of North Dakota. And if you live in a place like Alaska, where zero drilling is currently allowed on federal lands, we could hardly blame you for thinking that the “shutdown” in permitting actually began right around January 20, 2009.
There are Valid Reasons to be Concerned. State and private production has been an incredible success story and a most welcome bright spot in our nation’s struggling economy. But when federal lands don’t keep pace and production actually falls, as has happened each of the past two years that means we are missing out on huge opportunities. Less federal production means fewer jobs and a prolonged dependence on foreign oil. Since supply does matter to prices, it also means higher and more volatile prices for families and businesses. In the midst of a shutdown with a federal government that has again reached its debt limit, we would be remiss not to point out that federal production can yield tens of billions of dollars for the federal Treasury in the years ahead. Given where we are today, that seems like a pretty good idea. But as we work to increase federal energy production, let’s not confuse the current short-term stoppage with a much longer-term problem.
For more on the level of oil and gas production on federal lands, see the EIA report.
Robert Dillon | Communications Director
Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee
(202) 224 6977 office, (202) 285 6783 mobile
Area Development. “This is a step forward for the Alaska LNG project and shows continued progress toward building Alaska’s energy future,” said Steve Butt, Senior Project Manager. “The work that we have put into the site selection process gives us confidence that the Nikiski site is the lead location for the LNG plant and terminal. The Nikiski site also results in a pipeline route that provides an access opportunity to North Slope natural gas by the major population centers in Fairbanks, Mat-Su Valley, Anchorage and the Kenai Peninsula.” ...