In this week’s Oilgram News column “New Frontiers,” Bridget Hunsucker looks at how exploding production in the legacy fields of the Permian Basin is outstripping an aggressive program to add new takeaway capacity.
By Bridget Hunsucker | April 21, 2014 12:01 AM Comments (0)
By Starr Spencer | April 19, 2014 02:58 PM Comments (0)
On the fourth anniversary of the Macondo oil spill on April 20, 2010, it’s fitting to recall another historic out-of-control well in the early days of the oil patch: Oklahoma’s Wild Mary Sudik.
The well was named for a real woman who by all accounts was a humble and sensible human being. “Wild” described not the woman, but the well that blew out on her property on March 26, 1930 and flowed for 11 days before it was capped.
Wikipedia, using historical and newspaper accounts, including those of the Oklahoma Historical Society, called the real Mary “modest.” It said she and her husband Vincent were Czech immigrants who bought a 160-acre dairy farm in 1904 and expanded it in 1924 to encompass the site of the future wild well. Because Mary signed the well lease first, wells on the property were named for her.
By Mriganka Jaipuriyar | April 18, 2014 11:36 AM Comments (0)
India’s oil and gas sector saw some unprecedented decisions taken last year under the Congress Party-led government.
These ranged from a partial deregulation of diesel prices to a new gas pricing mechanism that would have seen the wellhead price of gas double to over $8/MMBtu. However, the hike — which was ratified twice by the Cabinet — was never implemented as scheduled on April 1 due to India’s upcoming elections.
The Congress-led government last year also started revamping and streamlining upstream policy to incentivise exploration and production.
All in all, 2013 was a busy year for journalists as we struggled to keep pace with and understand all that was going on in India’s energy sector.
By Joshua Brown | April 18, 2014 09:33 AM Comments (2)
On May 11, several news outlets reported that 200 hundreds bags of radioactive material were found in an abandoned building in Noonan, a small northwest town in North Dakota. It is likely the largest case of illegal dumping in state history, twice the size of the amount found in Watford City three week earlier.
Continental Resources, one of the largest Bakken producers, immediately cut ties with RP Services LLC, the company state officials blamed for the Watford City dump.
By John Kingston | April 17, 2014 03:17 PM Comments (3)
When commentators talk about the US cutting its oil consumption, they often cite the reductions in usage that were spurred by the first oil shock in 1973-1974. “See,” they say. “We did it back then, and we can do it again!”
What they often fail to note is that one of the ways in which the US did dial back on its oil consumption is by drastically changing over its use of fuel oil for electricity generation to lots of other things: coal, natural gas, nuclear, alternatives. In 40 years, there have been plenty of things.
But the fact is if you’ve all but zeroed out your consumption of fuel oil, you can only do that once. That’s why the whole “we can do it again!” comes up short.
By Annie Siebert | April 17, 2014 10:13 AM Comments (0)
Shell’s $4 billion proposal to build a petrochemical complex on the site of the former Horsehead Corp. zinc smelter in Monaca, Pennsylvania, was on display Wednesday at two events at a banquet facility overlooking a golf course near the community, which lies about 30 miles northwest of Pittsburgh.
If constructed, Shell’s ethane cracker would feed production of 1.5 million mt/year of ethylene, 500,000 mt/year of gas-phased high density polyethylene, 500,000 mt/year of slurry HDPE, and 500,000 mt/year of linear low density polyethylene. Shell and Horsehead have extended Shell’s option to buy the Horsehead site along the Ohio River three times, most recently in December.
But the details of the proposal were not the main focus of Wednesday’s event. There was no PowerPoint presentation. No Q&A session. No leaflets. And significantly, still no indication that the project had been clearly decided as a “go.”
By Starr Spencer | April 17, 2014 12:01 AM Comments (1)
In the controversial 1940s book The Fountainhead, arch-villain Ellsworth Toohey, who above all seeks power and control of other people, comments — and this is a paraphrase — that the way to topple a system is to make one small negative but still-key move in just the right place, and then sit back and watch the whole edifice implode as its members scramble for self-preservation.
Although Ayn Rand, the author of that book and fierce champion of individualism, hated the popular notion that “we’re all in this together,” the fact is that in oil markets and economic systems, we are. One ominous signal — and even worse, a handful — can start a rumble that creates an earthquake.
By News Desk | April 16, 2014 02:56 PM Comments (0)