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Oil and Gas Roundup — August 11

August 11, 2014
TOPICS: In the news
A roundup of oil and natural gas industry news from around the state, nation and world:

Oklahoma drilling rig count up by two to 211

The number of drilling rigs actively exploring for oil or natural gas in Oklahoma increased by two this week to 211, Baker Hughes Inc. reported on Friday.

The tally is up 43 from a year ago, when it was 168.

Nationwide, the net number of active drilling units rose by 19 this week to 1,908, according to Houston-based Baker Hughes. The total is up 130 rigs from a year ago when it was at 1,778.

Of the rigs operating this week across the U.S., 1,588 were exploring for oil, 316 for gas and four were listed as miscellaneous.

Continental Resources builds two water recycling centers

WOODWARD — Oklahoma City-based Continental Resources Inc. next month will become the latest oil and natural gas producer to build a water recycling and processing facility in the state.

The company is building recycling centers in Garvin and Stephens counties, where they will support Continental’s rapidly expanding drilling effort in the South Central Oklahoma Oil Province, or SCOOP.

“In designing our water recycling facilities, we wanted to reuse water without detrimentally affecting our wells,” Continental Resources engineer Anthony Luvera said Thursday at the Tri-State Oil and Gas Convention in Woodward. “It took some planning, but we finally got there.”

Like many others in the industry, Continental is trying to find the balance between reducing freshwater use while holding down operating costs.

Read The Oklahoman story:

EIA: Energy, mining are 11 percent economy in 6 states

The energy industry and mining make up at least 10 percent of the economy in six states, including Oklahoma, which now ranks fifth nationally in crude oil production and fourth in the production of natural gas.

The U.S. Energy Information Administration reported that Texas, Wyoming, West Virginia, North Dakota and Alaska also have big energy and mining economies that make up a large slice of their state economies.

Wyoming depends more on energy and mining than any other U.S. state – around one-third of its economy is from those sectors. Wyoming has crude oil and natural gas in the Niobrara formation and coal mining from the Powder River Basin.

Alaska had an 8 percent decline in mining activity last year thanks to a drop in oil production from the North Slope.

West Virginia has a long history of coal mining, but natural gas production from the Marcellus Shale is increasing. Energy and mining make up 17 percent of West Virginia’s economy, the EIA reported.

Mining and energy in North Dakota went from 2 percent of the economy in 2003 to 14 percent of the state’s economy in 2013. The Bakken Shale earlier this year passed the 1 million-barrels-per-day mark. North Dakota also has the lowest unemployment rate in the U.S., at 2.7 percent in June.

Read the full report here:

Senate GOP presses Interior to open Atlantic, Arctic to drilling

A coalition of 21 Republican senators is urging the Interior Department to open up the Atlantic and areas of the Arctic to oil and gas development in its next five-year lease plan.

Interior is currently gathering comments on for its 2017-2022 lease plan, which could include the Atlantic, Arctic and new parts of the Pacific to oil and gas drilling.

“With our allies under threat, our friends under attack, and our enemies on the move, continued exploration and production of energy from federal lands in the United States is absolutely vital,” the letter sent to Interior Secretary Sally Jewell states. “Our offshore resources, which the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act of 1953 declares ‘should be made available for expeditious and orderly development,’ are critical to this effort.”

The letter states the new program should include the Arctic, Alaska's Atlantic and Cook Inlet, on top of areas that are currently open.
"We must not return to the constrained vision of the past wherein America's resources remain untapped just off our coastline," the letter, signed by Sens. Lisa Murkowski (Alaska), James Inhofe (Okla.) and John Cornyn (Texas), states.

Read more:

Digging deeper into a University of Michigan report on shale gas and manufacturing

One would think that by now the benefits to our State and Country of shale gas would be conceded by all. However, there are still those folks out there who need more evidence.  Enter the University of Michigan, which recently published a report (based on a daylong symposium it held on March 28 in Washington D.C. at the National Press Club) exploring how shale gas impacts U.S. manufacturing.

It should be noted that nowhere in the title was there reference to what many activists call “mythical” benefits. Indeed, the report itself (and attendees at the end) acknowledged the “game changing” status of responsible oil and natural gas development and its potential to contribute to the manufacturing economy in many ways.  Although there are clearly positive aspects of this report, there are also blatant deficiencies where it appears the “team” regurgitated what many extreme environmentalists have been claiming about the development of oil and natural gas.

The report clearly recognizes the benefits from the recent energy boom as seen in its conclusion: “The U.S. shale gas boom of recent years has enabled domestic job creation and economic growth, and has recast the U.S. role in the global energy landscape.”

However, what the report truly fails to recognize is that this energy boom would not be realized but for continued development of our natural resources. Yes, the abundant supply of natural gas has fostered a resurgent manufacturing sector, but that resurgence relies on continued supply.  The report goes to great lengths to address the benefits of shale gas once it’s been delivered to the end-user, but appears to focus mainly on the risks associated with the actual development and distribution of oil and gas.

Read more:
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