Archive for the ‘shipping’ Category

US crude-by-barge industry faces rough waters in oil markets: Petrodollars

While pipelines and rail are often the transportation modes that spring to mind for moving oil in the US, there’s also a market for inland barges. In this week’s Oilgram News column, Petrodollars, Joshua Mann assesses how the market to move oil has shifted under pressure from crude prices.

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Seaborne nickel ore trade still a deadly ‘game of Russian roulette’

“Carrying solid bulk cargoes involves serious risks, which must be managed carefully to safeguard the crew and the ship. These risks include reduced ship stability (and even capsizing) due to cargo liquefaction; fire or explosion due to chemical hazards; and damage to ship structures due to poor loading procedures.” — The opening paragraph of the introduction of Carrying Solid Bulk Cargoes Safely guide, published in 2013 by UK classification society Lloyd’s Register, in association with the UK P&I Club and Intercargo, the trade association for dry bulk shipowners and operators.

A suspected case of cargo liquefaction may have indirectly claimed the life of one seafarer on Friday, July 17, 2015, aboard the 2007-built Supramax Alam Manis in the northern Philippines, just six months after the same phenomenon claimed 19 souls on a Supramax carrying bauxite.

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Asia drawing better purchase terms for Mideast crude as competition intensifies

There is little doubt that additional crude oil supplies from Iran will intensify competition among Middle Eastern producers, which are already fighting to secure their share of Asia’s dynamic markets against the influx of barrels from western hemisphere suppliers that can no longer rely on the US market.

Tehran’s July 14 nuclear deal with six world powers will eventually lead to additional flows of Iranian oil onto world markets, but oil minister Bijan Zanganeh has already said the thrust of the marketing focus will be on Asia, where Iran has been able to maintain a foothold in the four key consuming countries.

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Ineos sends Europe a fracking message about gas; next stop, upstream

As the champagne bottles smashed into the side of the two newly-built ships that in November will bring the first cargo of US shale gas into Europe, billionaire chairman of Ineos Jim Ratcliffe sent a clear message to European lawmakers whose energy policies have stalled his plans to frack for gas in Europe.

Emblazoned down the side of the two freshly-named vessels — the Ineos Insight and Ineos Ingenuity — were the words “Shale Gas for Manufacturing” and “Shale Gas for Chemicals.”

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US LNG exports: A move toward gas market price convergence

Much has been written in recent years about the potential impact of upcoming US LNG exports. Market analysts have pondered the likely effect on domestic US natural gas prices, gas production rates, domestic employment, GDP and even consumption by related petrochemical and agricultural industries. On the global stage, many expect that at current price levels US gas could flood the European and South American markets, pushing Atlantic Basin gas prices to new lows.

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Regulation & Environment: US oil struggles to unite over regulation reforms

In this week’s Oilgram News column, Regulation & Environment, Brian Scheid describes how different segments of the US oil industry are grappling with which policies they feel most in need of revisions given the temptation of foreign markets for domestic crude.

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The sinking of a bauxite carrier, and why it could have been avoided

“Hear us when we cry to thee for those in peril on the sea.” —From the Naval Hymn, Eternal Father, Strong to Save, words by William Whiting, popularised by Britain’s Royal Navy and the US Navy.

The capsizing and sinking of a less than 10-year old Supramax dry bulk carrier the Bulk Jupiter on January 2 with the loss of all but one of the crew and marine insurers, has led to speculation on the cause. The consensus appears to be that more than likely it was cargo liquefaction, serves as a stark reminder about the importance of following safety procedures and best practices in the handling and loading of dry bulk carriers.

The incident follows a sustained period of relatively few losses of dry bulk carriers at sea, in contrast to the heavy losses sustained through much of the 1990s. The 2006-built Bulk Jupiter (56,000 dwt) was carrying a cargo of bauxite–a commodity not previously considered to be prone to liquefaction–from Kuantan in Malaysia to China, when it capsized and sank on January 2, having embarked on its voyage on December 29.

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New Frontiers: The ever-shifting ground under oil pipelines

Pipelines that once went one direction are now being shifted to go in another direction. Not only that, they’re carrying different things. Janet McGurty discusses the shifts in this week’s Oilgram News column, New Frontiers.
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Could a Jones Act waiver move US crude export policy?

US crude oil exports appear to be the next big energy policy battle, but could a rift between East Coast refiners and US producers, as well as a historic shift in US export rules, be avoided with a limited, temporary waiver to a century-old shipping law?

Perhaps because they want to avoid a prolonged dispute within their own industry, some US refining interests have floated the idea. Some within the industry see a temporary waiver to the Jones Act as a feasible compromise on weakening the current export regime.

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Takeoff, eh? At time of need, New York jet fuel heads to Canada

New York jet fuel prices spiked from mid-July through August, and new data gives more insight why. Blame Canada.

Canada may be sending everything from comedians and crude into the US. But in July, it took in a good bit of US jet fuel, mostly out of New York.

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