follow us Twitter Facebook
<< Back to News

Oil and Gas Roundup — April 1

April 01, 2014
TOPICS: In the news
A roundup of oil and natural gas industry news from around the state, nation and world:

Oklahoma oil industry uses less than 2 percent of state's water

Four years into a drought that has plagued much of western Oklahoma, the oil and natural gas industry continues to expand its search for energy locked deep below the dusty surface.

Despite the increased oil and gas activity in the state, oil and gas drilling and hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, still account for less than 2 percent of freshwater use in Oklahoma, according to the Oklahoma Water Resources Board and the Oklahoma Geological Survey.

Public water supply represents 41 percent of the state’s freshwater use, followed by irrigation at 32 percent and livestock and aquaculture at 12 percent.

“Even with the growth in fracking and unconventional drilling in the state, we still expect to see oil and gas in the grand scheme of things to be a very small piece of the overall water consumption pie in Oklahoma,” said J.D. Strong, executive director of the Oklahoma Water Resources Board.

In the state’s 2060 water plan, oil and natural gas water use is expected to grow to about 4.8 percent over the next five decades.

Read The Oklahoman story:

Eagle Ford and other “tight” oil spots helped U.S. produce 10 percent of global total

Driven by production of crude oil in the Eagle Ford Shale and other “tight” formations, the United States produced a more than a tenth of the world’s oil in 2013, the U.S. Energy Information Administration estimates.

Total U.S. oil production averaged 7.84 million barrels a day in the fourth quarter, accounting for one of every 10 barrels of world production, according to new data from the federal agency. That’s up from 9 percent at the end of 2012.

Advances in hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling helped energy companies wring 3.22 million barrels per day out of domestic tight formations — or those with low permeability — thus driving up the overall national output.

While the tight designation isn’t limited to shale plays, South Texas’ Eagle Ford and North Dakota’s Bakken shales together accounted for 63 percent that total, according to EIA.

The United States now dominates oil production in tight formations, but Canada and Russia also are producing commercial quantities of crude from such basins, agency researchers say.

In Canada, tight oil production accounted for nearly 10 percent overall crude production, while Russian fracking in the West Siberia Basin totaled 1 percent of that country’s production.

Australia and the United Kingdom have the potential to be next countries that use fracking and other techniques to unlock oil from previously impenetrable formations, EIA adds.

Obama pitches shale gas to Europe seeking to cut imports

The crisis in Ukraine underscores the need for the European Union to consider imports of natural gas from the U.S. and development of domestic resources to diversify supplies, President Barack Obama said.

The annexation of Crimea by Russia pushed the 28-nation EU to accelerate its search for ways to cut reliance on imports from Russia’s OAO Gazprom (OGZD), the main supplier of gas to Europe through Ukrainian pipelines. Europe depends on purchases from abroad for more than a half of its energy consumption and governments in the bloc are divided over exploration for shale gas, which has brought the U.S. toward energy independence.

“It is useful for Europe to look at its own energy assets as well as how the United States can supply additional energy assets,” Obama told reporters today in Brussels after a meeting with EU President Herman Van Rompuy and European Commission President Jose Barroso.

The EU’s overall energy dependency rate is set to rise to 80 percent by 2035 from the current 60 percent, according to the International Energy Agency. The bloc’s heads of state and government at a summit last week asked the European Commission, the EU executive, to prepare by June a road map on how to cut reliance on Russian imports and increase security of supply.

As a part of their debate on energy policies for the next decade at the March 20-21 summit, EU leaders also urged member states to speed up integration of electricity and gas markets to help reduce costs. Power prices in some parts of Europe are double those in the U.S. amid a shale-gas revolution.

Read more:

The Weekly Oil and Gas Follies

Each week Forbes contributor David Blackmon outlines the week's silliness, shenanigans, fake news and real news related to the oil and natural gas industry.

Read this week's here:
<< Back to news