follow us Twitter Facebook
<< Back to News

Oil and Gas Roundup — Sept. 17

September 16, 2013
TOPICS: In the news
A roundup of oil and natural gas industry news from around the state, nation and world:

Permian Basin on track to be top shale oil producer

Although the Eagle Ford Shale in South Texas gets most of the chatter when it comes to talk of major oil production from hydraulic fracturing, the storied West Texas fields of the Permian Basin are revving up to steal the limelight.

Between January and June of this year, the Permian Basin has already surpassed oil production in the Eagle Ford, showing 889,808 barrels each day compared to the 598,706 barrels per day in South Texas, according to statistics from the Texas Railroad Commission, which regulates the state’s energy industry.

The consensus is that the Permian Basin oil production will reach 2 million barrels of oil per day within the next five years.

Read more:

America's energy boom saved you $1,200

The U.S. shale energy boom is beginning to trickle down into the economy. According to research firm IHS, America's energy renaissance is having a "real and tangible" economic impact. How real and tangible? It boosted the average household's disposable income by $1,200 last year. As good as that number might sound, the best is likely yet to come.

The numbers are pretty compelling across the board. In addition to the $163 billion in aggregate savings primarily driven by lower energy costs, employment related to energy has added 2.1 million jobs to the economy. What's really incredible is that the energy boom has even added 44,000 new jobs in the state of New York, which has continued to reject hydraulic fracturing because of alleged environmental and health concerns.

The shale boom has really been a game-changer for our country. Wider use of cheaper, cleaner natural gas has helped to curb carbon emissions while also keeping electricity costs at bay. Meanwhile, increased oil production has lowered imports to just 40% of total consumption, the lowest level since 1991. Looking ahead, we can expect continued production growth as well as increased domestic consumption, which is a recipe for an even greater future economic impact.

Read more:

Energy rigs in U.S. little changed at 1,768, Baker Hughes says

Rigs targeting oil and natural gas in the U.S. rose by one this week to 1,768, according to Baker Hughes Inc.

Oil rigs fell by four to 1,361, data posted on the company’s website show. The gas count rose seven to 401, the Houston-based field services company said.

The U.S. rig count has fallen by 96 rigs compared to the same time last year even as U.S. production and oil prices have surged, as drilling efficiency has increased well yields in shale basins like the Bakken. The number of directional wells, which enable drilling at multiple angles, has risen to 248 from 207 a year ago. The gain in oil output helped the U.S. meet 87 percent of its energy needs in the first five months of 2013, on pace to be the highest annual rate since 1986, according to the Energy Information Administration.

Regulatory permits for onshore drilling are rising, according to Barclays Plc. (BARC) James C. West, an oil-services analyst for the New York investment bank, said those permits reached their highest level this year in August, up 14 percent from July to 5,231 issued in 30 states the research team monitors. An increase in permits tends to precede an increase in well drilling by two months, West said in a Sept. 11 research note.

West Texas Intermediate crude for October delivery fell 73 cents to $107.87 a barrel at 1:07 p.m. on the New York Mercantile Exchange, up 9.7 percent in the past year.

U.S. oil output gained 124,000 barrels a day to 7.75 million in the week ended Sept. 6, the highest level since May 1989, according to the EIA, the Energy Department’s statistical arm.

Natural gas for October delivery rose 3.1 cents to $3.669 per million British thermal units on the Nymex, up 21 percent from a year ago.

U.S. gas stockpiles rose 65 billion cubic feet last week to 3.253 trillion cubic feet, the EIA said yesterday. Supplies were 5 percent below a year earlier and 1.4 percent above the five-year average.


Keystone XL proponents use pencils to make their point

When trying to persuade policymakers and politicians of your point of view, sometimes you need a prop.

Supporters of the Keystone XL pipeline may have found theirs in a 14-inch pencil.

The American Petroleum Institute is using the jumbo-sized writing implements to drive home its belief that the Obama administration is taking too long to review TransCanada Corp.’s proposal to build the pipeline linking Alberta oil sands with Gulf Coast refineries.

Next Thursday, Sept. 19, marks five years since TransCanada first asked the U.S. government for permission to build the border-crossing pipeline.

Since the fifth anniversary is usually celebrated with wood, API ordered up the pencils to mark the occasion.

The silver pencils — which look a bit like pipelines themselves — are emblazoned with a slogan: “KXL delay: 5 years and counting.” An attached card features a picture of a construction worker asking “When will I work?”

Read more:

API's Greco discusses Congress' latest moves to reform renewable fuels policy

As the Office of Management and Budget reviews U.S. EPA's proposal for 2014 renewable fuel volumes, Congress continues to debate a legislative fix to the policy. During a recent E&E TV “OnPoint,” Bob Greco, director of downstream activities at the American Petroleum Institute, discusses the latest efforts in Congress to reform the renewable fuel standard (RFS). He also explains why he believes recent advancements in cellulosic technology are not enough to address volume discrepancies.

“I think there's growing concern about how EPA has handled the renewable fuel standard to date,” Greco says. “I think there is recognition in 2013 EPA had an opportunity and they missed it to address the blend for the past year.

“Now we're waiting on a 2014 proposal where EPA says they will propose something that makes more sense and then frankly recognizes the blend wall, which they've acknowledged is a real concern. So we feel EPA has to do that quickly, needs to get back on schedule. This is a rule that is supposed to be finalized in November here it is September and we haven't even seen the proposal yet.”

Read more:

China to invest 80B yuan in exploring oil, gas this year

BEIJING — China's investment in exploration of oil and gas resources is expected to stand at 80 billion yuan (13.07 billion U.S. dollars) in 2013, according to the Ministry of Land and Resources.

Such investment has risen steadily in China over the past years as the country moves to reduce dependence on imports and ensure security of energy supply.

The ministry figures show that money spent on exploration of oil and gas fields rose from 19.0 billion yuan in 2002 to 67.3 billion yuan in 2011.

In the 2008-2011 period, some 5.01 billion tonnes of petroleum reserves and 2.6 trillion cubic meters of natural gas were discovered.

China's dependence rates on imports of oil and natural gas came in at 58 percent and nearly 30 percent respectively in 2012, according to a report by the Economics and Technology Research Institute of China National Petroleum Corporation.


<< Back to news