Keyword: oil

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  • Control of southern entrance to the Red Sea the next Mid-East flashpoint

    04/01/2015 10:38:15 AM PDT · by Corky Boyd · 16 replies
    Island Turtle ^ | April 1, 2015 | Corky Boyd
    The Israeli intelligence blog Debka File reports that pro-Iranian Houthi troops have taken over control of the strategic straits (Bab el-Mandeb) at the southern entrance to the Red Sea. This choke point threatens all commercial and military maritime traffic from the oil rich nations bound for the Suez Canal and the Mediterranean. "Control of the Red Sea Bab el-Mandeb Straits passed Tuesday, March 31 to pro-Iranian Yemeni forces when the Yemeni Army’s 117th Brigade loyal to the former Yemeni President Ali Saleh handed positions guarding the waterway to two Houthi commando battalions trained by Iranian Revolutionary Guards. This is revealed...
  • Fire Reported On Bay Of Campeche Dwelling Platform

    04/01/2015 9:56:45 AM PDT · by thackney · 20 replies
    Oil Pro ^ | 4/1/2015 | Melanie Smith
    Wednesday morning, social network users reported a fire on the dwelling platform Abkatun Alfa located in Mexico's oil-rich Bay of Campeche. According to local media reports, the Abkatun Alpha is a dwelling platform purposed for housing personnel working offshore in the Bay of Campeche. Early reports also indicate it is owned by a private firm subcontracted by Pemex. Preliminary information indicates a failure in operation processes caused the fire. The incident prompted the evacuation of the platform. Some injuries were also reported. The injured were transported via helicopter from the rig to hospitals in Ciudad del Carmen. One death, 48...
  • Minnesotans in oil train ‘danger zones’ urged to prepare

    04/01/2015 4:41:53 AM PDT · by BenLurkin · 17 replies
    echopress ^ | Don Davis
    people need to take some personal awareness of what’s around them,” Kevin Reed of the Minnesota Homeland Security and Emergency Management Department said. “‘How do I get out of the way before the fire department gets here?’” Minnesotans should answer in advance questions such as “what would I take with me?” he added. People living within a half mile of railroad tracks carrying North Dakota oil are in an area officials say is a “danger zone.”
  • Exxon Mobil starts production at its new deepwater project in the Gulf

    04/01/2015 4:11:54 AM PDT · by thackney · 9 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | March 31, 2015 | Robert Grattan
    Exxon Mobil Corp. said Monday it had begun producing from its Hadrian South Gulf of Mexico project. Total production of the project is expected to reach about 300 million cubic feet of gas and 3,000 barrels of liquids per day from two wells. The well is located about 230 miles offshore and in about 7,650 feet of water. First production comes after a discovery well was drilled in 2008 and an appraisal well was completed in 2009. Exxon operates the Hadrian South project with a 46.7 percent interest while Brazil’s Petrobras and Italy’s Eni hold a 23.3 percent and 30...
  • New EIA monthly data track crude oil movements by rail

    03/31/2015 12:48:53 PM PDT · by thackney · 8 replies
    Energy Information Administration ^ | MARCH 31, 2015 | Energy Information Administration
    For the first time, EIA is providing monthly data on rail movements of crude oil, which have significantly increased over the past five years. The new data on crude-by-rail (CBR) movements are integrated with EIA's existing monthly petroleum supply statistics, which already include movements by pipeline, tanker, and barge. The new monthly time series of crude oil rail movements includes shipments to and from Canada and dramatically reduces the absolute level of unaccounted for volumes in EIA's monthly balances for each region. EIA is initiating the new series with monthly data from January 2010 through the current reporting month, January...
  • Venezuela Cuts Oil Subsidies To Caribbean Nations

    03/31/2015 7:31:19 AM PDT · by thackney · 6 replies
    NPR ^ | MARCH 30, 2015 | Jackie Northam
    Venezuela is Latin America's largest oil producer, and its economy depends heavily on oil exports. It's been been hit hard by the tumbling oil prices. "Venezuela is in desperate straits. The oil sector has been deteriorating, and now with the slumping oil prices, they needed cash desperately," says Michael Shifter, the president of the Inter-American Dialogue, a Washington, D.C.-based group that studies the region. Shifter says it's no surprise that Venezuela is trimming back a program that provides oil at subsidized, deferred payment rates to many of its Caribbean neighbors that are dependent on energy imports. Petrocaribe — an alliance...
  • Advanced Drillships Become Burden For Owners As Business Dries Up

    03/31/2015 5:34:51 AM PDT · by thackney · 9 replies
    Reuters via Rig Zone ^ | March 27, 2015 | Sneha Banerjee & Swetha Gopinath
    Not so long ago, advanced drillships costing more than half a billion dollars each and capable of operating in ever-deeper waters practically guaranteed big profits for oil-rig operators. Now, with oil prices down by half since June, many have become a burden on their owners as drilling activity slows. Drillship operators face a more brutal hit to margins than they did after the oil-price crash of 2008 because of the huge cost of maintaining the more than $10 billion worth of state-of-the-art vessels that have been idled at sea, analysts say. Noble Corp Plc, Ensco Plc and Transocean Ltd are...
  • Microseismic Plus Refrack Could Equal More Production

    03/31/2015 5:22:10 AM PDT · by thackney
    E&P Hart Energy ^ | March 23, 2015 | Velda Addison
    Production from U.S. unconventional plays—boosted by advances in completion technology and techniques—has undoubtedly transformed the oil and gas scene both in the U.S. and abroad. However, low recovery rates for shale oil and gas plus steep declines for wells show there is still room for improvement. Some are turning to microseismic and refracks to better results given today’s market conditions. “Beating the decline curve in unconventional reservoirs requires continuous drilling and completion of new wells. This can be costly and time consuming,” Sudhendu Kashikar, vice president of completions evaluation for MicroSeismic Inc., explained in a webcast this week. “Refracking provides...
  • CME Group launches unprecedented oil-storage futures contract

    03/31/2015 5:11:30 AM PDT · by thackney
    The Globe and Mail ^ | Mar. 30 2015 | LUKE KAWA
    As U.S. crude oil stockpiles soar, CME Group Inc. has come up with an innovative way for energy producers to reserve space in storage facilities. The ability to trade oil futures contracts has been around since 1983, but on Monday, the first ever oil-storage futures contract goes live. One contract bestows upon its holder the right, but not the obligation, to store 1,000 barrels of crude oil in caverns or above-ground tanks in Louisiana. Three grades of sour crude are eligible to be held at these facilities, which are connected to 50 per cent of the United States’ refining capacity...
  • Canada Pushes Ahead with Keystone XL Alternatives

    03/31/2015 5:04:39 AM PDT · by thackney · 8 replies
    Scientific American ^ | March 30, 2015 | Bobby Magill
    A decision on whether to allow the Keystone XL Pipeline to be built in the U.S. could come at any time, but there are myriad other projects on the table designed to do exactly what Keystone XL was designed to do: transport Canadian tar sands oil to refineries. Those pipelines, both in the U.S. and Canada, are being designed to move the oily bitumen produced from the tar sands to refineries in Texas and eastern Canada, and to ports on the Pacific Coast where the oil could be shipped to Asia. Combined, the pipelines would be able to carry more...
  • Oil industry to Obama: Stop excluding Atlantic drilling leases

    03/31/2015 4:58:56 AM PDT · by thackney · 3 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | March 30, 2015 | Jennifer A. Dlouhy
    As the Obama administration weighs where to sell offshore drilling leases from 2017 to 2022, the oil industry has a single plea: Stop ruling out potential prospects. Eight industry trade groups are delivering that message in comments set to be filed with the administration on Monday, ahead of a midnight deadline for the public to weigh in on the Interior Department’s draft proposed offshore leasing program for 2017 to 2022. “Considerable acreage has already been excluded at this early stage of the planning process, especially in the Atlantic, eastern Gulf of Mexico and Alaska outer continental shelf,” said the groups,...
  • BNSF adds new safety rules for crude oil trains

    03/31/2015 4:55:40 AM PDT · by thackney · 12 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | March 30, 2015 | Associated Press
    <p>BNSF has started taking additional safety measures for crude oil shipments because of four recent high-profile derailments in the U.S. and Canada, the railroad said Monday.</p> <p>Under the changes, BNSF is slowing down crude oil trains to 35 mph in cities with more than 100,000 people and increasing track inspections near waterways. The Fort Worth-based railroad also is stepping up efforts to find and repair defective wheels before they can cause derailments.</p>
  • Texas Hasn't Been This Bad In Two Years

    03/30/2015 10:10:07 AM PDT · by blam · 9 replies
    BI ^ | 3-30-2015 | Myles Udland
    Myles Udland March 30, 2015The crash in oil prices is hammering the Texas economy. The latest manufacturing outlook index from the Dallas Fed plunged again in March, to -17.4 from -11.2 in February, indicating deteriorating business conditions in the state. Expectations were for the index to show a reading of -9. But the most important part of this report is the commentary from Texas business leaders, who have given an on-the-ground picture of how the decline in oil prices is affecting one of the country's economies most driven by oil. In March the tune didn't change, as it sounds as...
  • Angola joins Venezuela among biggest losers of oil's tumble

    03/30/2015 8:13:03 AM PDT · by Lorianne · 8 replies
    CNBC ^ | 28 March 2015 | Will Duke
    Plunging oil prices have been an economic windfall for U.S. consumers, primarily through greater savings at the pump. In energy-reliant countries around the world like Angola, however, the effect has been far less beneficial. Social and economic turmoil in countries like Venezuela and Russia—largely because of the swoon in global oil prices—has drawn attention away from Angola, an OPEC member that is Africa's second-largest oil producer. The country churns out 1.75 million barrels of oil per day, according to the Energy Information Agency (EIA). The sub-Saharan country is hugely dependent on oil production to generate revenue for its economy, which...
  • Texas economy hasn't been this bad in two years

    03/30/2015 8:04:10 AM PDT · by SeekAndFind · 16 replies
    Business Insider ^ | 03/29/2015 | Myles Udland
    The crash in oil prices is hammering the Texas economy. The latest manufacturing outlook index from the Dallas Fed plunged again in March, to -17.4 from -11.2 in February, indicating deteriorating business conditions in the state. Expectations were for the index to show a reading of -9. But the big most important part of this report is the commentary from Texas business leaders, who have given an on-the-ground picture of how the decline in oil prices is impacting one of the country's most oil-related economies. In March, the tune didn't change, as it sounds like things are still tough in...
  • Wisconsinites sue over rail expansion for crude oil

    03/30/2015 1:45:40 AM PDT · by Cincinatus' Wife · 14 replies
    Wisconsin Gazette ^ | March 26, 2015 | Lisa Neff, Staff writer
    Still, Margolis said, “the reality is there’s no way to safely transport the highly volatile crude from the Bakken oil field in North Dakota or the heavy crudes from the Alberta tar sands. Instead, these extreme fossil fuels should be left in the ground.”Days after the fiery derailment of an oil train near Galena, Illinois, nine Wisconsin citizens went to court to challenge an expansion of a rail system for oil trains in their community. The train had just passed through Wisconsin before the derailment. Their focus was on the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources’ decision to permit the filling...
  • Fears of a new global crash as debts and dollar’s value rise

    03/29/2015 6:19:27 PM PDT · by 9thLife · 13 replies
    the guardian ^ | Saturday 28 March 2015 12.00 EDT | Heather Stewart
    Greek ministers are spending this weekend, almost five grinding years since Athens was first bailed out, wrangling over the details of the spending cuts and economic reforms they have drawn up to appease their creditors. As the recriminations fly between Europe’s capitals, campaigners are warning that the global community has failed to learn the lessons of the Greek debt crisis – or even of Argentina’s default in 2001, the consequences of which are still being contested furiously in courts on both sides of the Atlantic. As Janet Yellen’s Federal Reserve prepares to raise interest rates, boosting the value of the...
  • Price decline hits oil patch

    03/29/2015 10:19:40 AM PDT · by Perkinsbob54 · 4 replies
    Albuquerque Journal ^ | 3/25/15 | Kevin Robinson-Avila
    At least 2,000 jobs will likely be lost in New Mexico’s oil and gas industry in the coming months because of sharp declines in the price of crude oil, according to estimates by the New Mexico Energy, Minerals and Natural Resources Department.
  • Obama Golfs With Big Money, Oil Moguls in Florida

    03/29/2015 9:47:01 AM PDT · by Oldeconomybuyer · 16 replies
    ABC News ^ | March 29, 2015 | By JOSH LEDERMAN
    President Barack Obama is teeing off in Florida with a trio of oil and private equity moguls. Obama was joined for his round of golf Sunday by Jim Crane, who owns the Floridian. Crane is a major Democratic donor who also golfed with Obama and Tiger Woods in 2013. Also in Obama's foursome is Milton Carroll. He's on the board of directors of Halliburton, the oil company closely associated with former Republican Vice President Dick Cheney.
  • Why Does Yemen Matter to the World’s Oil Market?

    03/29/2015 4:24:06 AM PDT · by thackney · 12 replies
    Wall Street Journal ^ | MAR 26, 2015 | Summer Said
    Q: Why is Yemen important to the world oil market? Yemen is only a small oil producer, but it lies at the heart of some of the most important energy routes. It shares a long border with southwest Saudi Arabia, world’s top oil exporter, and is adjacent to the Bab el-Mandeb strait, the fourth-biggest shipping chokepoint in the world by volume. About 3.8 million barrels a day of petroleum passed through the strait in 2013, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Closing the strait could keep tankers in the Persian Gulf from reaching the Suez Canal and the SUMED...
  • Private Emails Reveal SoS Clinton Aide’s Secret Spy Network (nothing about bridesmaid's dresses)

    03/28/2015 3:56:18 AM PDT · by Liz · 81 replies
    propublica.com ^ | 3/27/15 | JEFF GERTH w/ Sam Biddle of, Gawker
    Updated March 27 to include responses from the FBI and the State Department. Emails disclosed by a hacker show a close family friend was funneling intelligence about the crisis in Libya directly to the Secretary of State’s private account starting before the Benghazi attack. Starting weeks before Islamic militants attacked the U.S. diplomatic outpost in Benghazi, Libya, longtime Clinton family confidante Sidney Blumenthal supplied intelligence to then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton gathered by a secret network that included a former CIA clandestine service officer, according to hacked emails from Blumenthal’s account. The emails, which were posted on the internet...
  • Venezuela slashes oil shipments to Cuba, Caribbean in half

    03/27/2015 5:16:56 PM PDT · by Brad from Tennessee · 5 replies
    Miami Herald ^ | March 26, 2015 | By Antonio María Delgado
    Venezuela has cut in half its subsidized shipments of crude oil to Cuba and Petrocaribe member nations to 200,000 barrels per day, down from 400,000 shipped in 2012, a Barclays report says. Also, the British investment bank’s report considered it “ironic” that Venezuela would ship any oil at all, highlighting that while the country is going through extreme difficulties, it continues to subsidize oil sales to countries that have healthier economies. . . Because of the cuts in oil shipments to the Caribbean, the firm reduced its deficit forecast for Venezuela to $22.6 billion, down from more than $30 billion...
  • Oil council: Shale won't last, Arctic drilling needed now

    03/27/2015 6:31:32 AM PDT · by Citizen Zed · 11 replies
    Cache Valley Daily ^ | 3-27-2015 | AP
    The U.S. should immediately begin a push to exploit its enormous trove of oil in the Arctic waters off of Alaska, or risk a renewed reliance on imported oil in the future, an Energy Department advisory council says in a study to be released Friday. The U.S. has drastically cut imports and transformed itself into the world's biggest producer of oil and natural gas by tapping huge reserves in shale rock formations. But the government predicts that the shale boom won't last much beyond the next decade. In order for the U.S. to keep domestic production high and imports low,...
  • Republican Bill Package Would Eliminate Energy Choice

    03/27/2015 5:15:33 AM PDT · by MichCapCon · 10 replies
    Michigan Capitol Confidential ^ | 3/23/2015 | Jack Spencer
    A legislative package sponsored by House Majority Floor Leader Aric Nesbitt, R-Lawton, would bring significant changes to Michigan’s electricity market. The provision drawing the most attention repeals the only remaining piece of a 2000 reform led by then-Gov. John Engler, which ended the monopoly status of Michigan's largest electric utilities. Under that reform, known as “Energy Choice,” customers could buy their power from an alternative generator, while the power lines through which the juice flows remained a regulated monopoly. Not surprisingly, the state’s two large utilities, Consumers Energy and Detroit Edison, were not pleased, and never stopped pressuring lawmakers to...
  • The Shale Debt Redux

    03/27/2015 5:06:49 AM PDT · by thackney · 8 replies
    The Energy Collective ^ | March 26, 2015 | Deborah Lawrence
    Shale debt, falling prices and slack demand has tight oil producers in trouble. And yet, there is still burgeoning production. Why? Well, we’ve seen this before. It’s the shale debt redux. Operators did it a few years ago in natural gas and prices have yet to recover. Unfortunately cheap money in the form of debt can mean poor investment choices for businesses and for investors. But it can also lead to an aberrant market because operators deep in debt won’t curtail production even though it is glutted. Debt coupons simply have to be met. The shale revolution has always been...
  • Mexico expects U.S. oil swap, another crack in crude export ban

    03/26/2015 6:42:44 AM PDT · by shove_it · 5 replies
    Reuters ^ | 25 Mar 2015 | DAVID ALIRE GARCIA AND VALERIE VOLCOVICI
    (Reuters) - Mexican state oil firm Pemex expects imminent approval from the U.S. Commerce Department to allow it to swap up to 100,000 barrels of heavy crude for a similar amount of lighter U.S. oil, what could be the latest milestone toward loosening the four-decades old ban on exporting U.S. oil. "Our expectation is that it happens soon," Jose Manuel Carrera, CEO of Pemex's commercial arm P.M.I. Comercio Internacional, said in an interview Friday. "I would like to see the approval tomorrow, or I would have liked to see it yesterday, but the truth is that this is a permit...
  • Futures Tumble As Yemen War Starts; Oil, Gold Surges

    03/26/2015 4:23:04 AM PDT · by sheikdetailfeather · 5 replies
    Zero Hedge ^ | 3-26-2015 | Tyler Durden
    In a somewhat surprising turn of events, this morning's futures reaction to last night's shocking start of a completely unexpected Yemen proxy war, which has seen an alliance of Gulf State launch an air, and soon land, war against Yemen's Houthi rebels, is what one would expect: down, and down big. This is surprising, because on previous occasions one would expect the NY Fed, or its pet hedge fund, Citadel, or the BOJ or ECB (via the CME's "Central Bank Incentive Program") to aggressively buy ES to prevent a slide, something has changed, and for the BTFDers, that something may...
  • Things that will happen if Venezuela implodes

    03/25/2015 2:33:39 PM PDT · by Citizen Zed · 45 replies
    cnbc ^ | 3-25-2015
    An economic implosion is becoming increasingly likely in Venezuela , and the country's debtholders, trade partners and neighbors are bracing for the fallout. The country's energy-dependent economy requires oil prices above $100 per barrel in order to sustain itself. Oil accounts for 95 percent of the country's export earnings, and combined with gas, it's 25 percent of the country's gross domestic product. Internationally traded Brent crude prices have fallen more than 48 percent in the past year. Meanwhile, a combination of inflation and currency controls have generated scarcity of basic needs such as flour, toilet paper and medicine. Venezuelans stand...
  • Senate Committee Advances "Denton Fracking Bill"

    03/25/2015 11:18:25 AM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 2 replies
    The Texas Tribune ^ | March 24, 2015 | Jim Malewitz
    A Senate committee gave unanimous approval Tuesday to a bill that would limit local control over oil and gas activities across Texas — a measure being referred to as the "Denton fracking bill." The proposal is among nearly a dozen filed in the aftermath of the North Texas town's vote in November to ban hydraulic fracturing within city limits, and it's among those most likely to pass. The legislation, Senate Bill 1165, now heads to the full Senate, where advocates for municipalities will push for changes to address their biggest concern – that the proposal would jeopardize long-held city police...
  • HOW MANY SHALE OIL PLAYS MAKE MONEY AT $37 PER BARREL?

    03/24/2015 5:56:02 PM PDT · by Lorianne · 35 replies
    Burning Platform ^ | 18 March 2015
    I’m tossing you a softball. Now think carefully. The choices are: A. Zero B. Zero C. Zero D. Zero I know Americans are math challenged and need a calculator to subtract 10 from 20, but I think even a CNBC bimbo or Princeton economic professor could get this one right. Last year there was much banter from the Wall Street shysters and Bakkan shale oil experts about the true breakeven price for shale oil not being $80 (which is the truth) but actually being as low as $58 a barrel. They were spreading this lie in order to keep idiot...
  • Rick Perry: Crude export ban should be lifted

    03/25/2015 7:03:16 AM PDT · by thackney · 5 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | March 24, 2015 | Rhiannon Meyers
    Former Gov. Rick Perry on Tuesday gave his support to lifting a decades-old ban on crude exports, calling it a “major error” to prevent U.S. oil from being shipped overseas. Perry, a likely candidate for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination, said that if he won the White House, he would propel North America into the global energy business “in a big way.” “If energy is going to be used as a weapon, we need to have the largest arsenal,” Perry said at the discussion hosted by Bloomberg at the JW Marriott in downtown Houston on Tuesday. Most crude exports have...
  • Poroshenko Orders Arrest Of Kolomoisky-Linked Militia Troops For Seizing State-Owned Oil Firm

    03/24/2015 6:35:10 PM PDT · by tcrlaf · 4 replies
    Kiev Post ^ | 3-24-2015 | Allison Quinn, Oleg Sukhov
    What started off as a corporate dispute is swiftly turning into a battle between the state and a billionaire regional governor who was once credited for curbing separatism in his region. The standoff between Kyiv's authorities and Dnipropetrovsk Governor Igor Kolomoisky is making a farce of the gains of the revolution a year ago that ousted the former corrupt president and his cronies, and is aiding the Russian cause of destabilization of the nation. On March 23, accusations of involvement with organized crime became the latest twist in the oligarch saga. Valentyn Nalyvaichenko, head of Ukraine’s Security Service loyal to...
  • ‘Spiderweb’ of sanctions means Iranian oil unlikely to flood the market

    03/24/2015 5:14:44 AM PDT · by thackney · 1 replies
    Financial Post ^ | 03.22.2015 | YADULLAH HUSSAIN
    Iran’s oil and gas sector holds plenty of promise but analysts say a deal between Tehran and global powers on nuclear issues this week is unlikely to spur either a flood of Iranian oil into the market or an investment bonanza by oil majors into the country. Iran and six world powers have been working to secure an agreement by March 24 to curb Tehran’s key nuclear activities for at least 10 years in exchange for gradual sanctions relief. “My guess is that on March 24th nothing will be done,” said Richard Nephew, who once led the Iran sanctions file...
  • Oil-Drop Pain Spreads to Saudi Arabia’s Energy Behemoth

    03/24/2015 5:06:03 AM PDT · by thackney · 9 replies
    Wall Street Journal ^ | Feb. 19, 2015 | SUMMER SAID and BENOÎT FAUCON
    Saudi Arabia’s refusal late last year to rein in oil production helped trigger the price crash that has hurt oil-producing countries and publicly listed energy companies alike. And now even the kingdom’s own oil company is feeling the pain. As a result, state-owned Saudi Aramco is looking for ways to cut costs everywhere, from pushing contractors for better deals on oil-well services to negotiating discounts on its phone and power bills, according to people familiar with the matter. The company—the world’s largest oil producer—is also considering slashing its future spending on production and exploration by as much as 25%, much...
  • Saudi Arabia Looks To U.S. To Develop Shale Deposits

    03/24/2015 4:59:25 AM PDT · by thackney · 20 replies
    Manufacturing Business Technology ^ | 03/19/2015 | Andy Szal
    The boom in U.S. oil production over the past decade led thousands of workers to prairie cities from Texas to North Dakota. Now, Saudi Arabia hopes those workers—many of them casualties of the ongoing downturn in crude prices—will consider the deserts of the Middle East instead. Saudi Arabia has a long history of recruiting skilled workers from the West to develop its vast oil reserves. The country, however, also possesses shale oil deposits, and observers say the current oil market provides an opportunity for the Saudis to begin developing those resources. “With the layoffs, it’s a great time to do...
  • Libya rivals fight for control of country's oil wealth

    03/24/2015 4:56:38 AM PDT · by thackney · 7 replies
    AFP ^ | March 22, 2015 | AFP
    <p>The latest row erupted this week as UN envoy Bernardino Leon, who is mediating between Libya's warring factions, warned the country was heading towards destruction unless a political deal is found.</p> <p>It also comes as the jihadist Islamic State group, which has made huge profits from illegal oil sales in Syria and Iraq where it has seized chunks of territory, has gained a foothold in Libya.</p>
  • U.S. drillers scrambling to thwart OPEC threat

    03/24/2015 4:42:36 AM PDT · by thackney · 5 replies
    Fuel Fix ^ | March 23, 2015 | Associated Press
    OPEC and lower global oil prices delivered a one-two punch to the drillers in North Dakota and Texas who brought the U.S. one of the biggest booms in the history of the global oil industry. Now they are fighting back. Companies are leaning on new techniques and technology to get more oil out of every well they drill, and furiously cutting costs in an effort to keep U.S. oil competitive with much lower-cost oil flowing out of the Middle East, Russia and elsewhere. “Everybody gets a little more imaginative, because they need to,” says Hans-Christian Freitag, vice president of technology...
  • As oil trains roll across America, volunteer firefighters face big risk

    03/23/2015 2:00:08 PM PDT · by Citizen Zed · 11 replies
    Reuters ^ | 3-23-2015 | EDWARD MCALLISTER
    Volunteers at the Galena, Illinois, fire department were hosing down the smoldering wreck of a derailed BNSF oil train on March 5 when a fire suddenly flared beyond their control. "They dropped the hoses and got out" when the flames started rising, said Charles Pedersen, emergency manager for Jo Daviess County, a rural area near the Iowa border which includes Galena. "Ten more minutes and we would have lost them all." No one was hurt in the fire, which burned for days, fed by oil leaking from the ruptured tank cars. But an increase in explosive accidents in North America...
  • New Natural Resources chief looks to overhaul federal land policy [energy, grazing, state run]

    03/23/2015 6:07:48 AM PDT · by Cincinatus' Wife · 8 replies
    Washington Examiner ^ | March 23, 2015 | Zack Colman interviews Rep. Rob Bishop (UT)
    Rep. Rob Bishop has a radical plan for changing public land policy, and it starts with an experiment in his home state of Utah. The Republican is known for shaking things up with his dry sense of humor and occasional belligerence toward Obama administration officials. Easily identified by his three-piece suits and coiffed white hair, the new House Natural Resources Committee chairman is trying to turn his panel from a legislative backwater into a driver of reform. Washington Examiner: With the Land and Water Conservation Fund, I hear a lot about how the states need more control. But how can...
  • Crude oil storage at Cushing, but not storage capacity utilization rate, at record level

    03/23/2015 5:28:09 AM PDT · by thackney · 21 replies
    Energy Information Administration ^ | MARCH 23, 2015 | Energy Information Administration
    After increasing for 15 consecutive weeks, crude oil storage at Cushing, Oklahoma, reached 54.4 million barrels on March 13, according to EIA's Weekly Petroleum Status Report. This volume is the highest on record, but not the highest percent of storage utilization, as working storage capacity at Cushing has also increased over time. Storage levels at Cushing are significant, because Cushing serves as the delivery point for the United States crude oil benchmark, West Texas Intermediate. Sited in central Oklahoma, Cushing is home to both a network of crude oil pipelines and storage capacity. The 70.8 million barrels of storage capacity...
  • What to Know About Fracking Outside the U.S.

    03/23/2015 5:12:59 AM PDT · by thackney · 2 replies
    Wall Street Journal ^ | MAR 19, 2015 | Justin Scheck
    Q: Outside the U.S., where have companies drilled for shale resources? All over—big oil companies like Royal Dutch Shell PLC, Exxon Mobil Corp. and Chevron Corp. have invested in Canada, Europe, Russia, South America and Asia, hoping shale reserves there could be similarly productive to those in the U.S. Q: Which of those countries are producing? Outside the U.S., only Canada, China and Argentina have commercial production from shale, the U.S. Energy Information Administration says. Q: What happened everywhere else? In some places—like Sweden, Poland and Romania—companies didn’t find enough gas or oil to keep drilling. In others, like Germany...
  • Oil Price Drop Hurts Spending on Business Investments

    03/23/2015 5:09:44 AM PDT · by thackney · 10 replies
    Wall Street Journal ^ | March 22, 2015 | NICK TIMIRAOS
    Prospects for an uptick in business investment this year are facing a major drag: The collapse in oil prices is spurring significant cutbacks by the energy-production industry, which had been a standout in an otherwise lackluster U.S. economic expansion. Business capital spending rose 6% last year due to gains from a broad base of U.S. industries. The drag from energy this year could cut that growth rate in half in 2015, according to economists at Goldman Sachs. Moreover, equity analysts at the bank estimate capital spending globally by energy companies in the S&P 500 will fall 25%, leading to the...
  • Oil Price Dips Under $55 on Saudi Output Fears

    03/23/2015 5:06:43 AM PDT · by thackney · 6 replies
    Wall Street Journal ^ | March 23, 2015 | GEORGI KANTCHEV
    ...Brent for delivery in May fell 1.1% to $54.71 a barrel on London’s ICE Futures exchange. On the New York Mercantile Exchange, light, sweet crude futures for delivery in May traded at $45.64 a barrel, down 2% from last week’s close. Both contracts gained last week with U.S. crude snapping a four-week losing streak. On Sunday, Saudi Arabia’s influential oil minister Ali al-Naimi told a conference in Riyadh that there was no conspiracy behind the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries’ decision last fall to maintain its output target. He said the group could have lost market share if it...
  • How The Fed Fostered The Oil Glut And Price Drop - Wall Street Losing Patience

    03/22/2015 7:28:54 AM PDT · by thackney · 19 replies
    Forbes ^ | 3/21/2015 | John S. Tobey
    Energy-sector deals have been a bright spot at a time when once-lucrative businesses, such as fixed-income trading and consumer lending, are flagging thanks to tighter rules, low interest rates and uneven economic growth, analysts said. Investment banks helped fuel the oil-and-gas exploration boom of the past decade by making loans valued at about $1 trillion to companies in the energy industry, most of which they sold to investors. The banks sold much of the debt to loan mutual funds, which grew rapidly from 2011 to 2013, but that demand dwindled as individual investors yanked $35 billion from the funds over...
  • Source: China to Lend Venezuela $10B in Coming Months

    03/22/2015 7:04:24 AM PDT · by thackney · 15 replies
    Reuters via Rig Zone ^ | March 20, 2015 | Corina Pons & Alexandra Ulmer|
    hina will lend Venezuela around $10 billion in coming months, half as part of a bilateral financing deal and the other half for the development of oil fields, a senior official at state oil company PDVSA said on Thursday. Fresh funds are a boon for financially squeezed Venezuela and will likely increase market confidence over the OPEC country's ability to meet major debt payments and arbitration awards. Venezuelan bonds rose on Thursday following the news. However, relief may be tempered as the loans appear largely earmarked and will only go so far in countering the steep tumble in oil prices...
  • Global oil glut set to grow as China slows crude imports

    03/21/2015 7:18:14 PM PDT · by Lorianne · 7 replies
    Reuters ^ | 18 March 2015 | Henning Gloystein
    A global oversupply of oil is set to rise as China pauses in the build-up of its strategic reserves and Asian refineries slow crude imports ahead of the spring maintenance season, putting more downward pressure on prices. China's purchases to fill its strategic petroleum reserves (SPR) had been one of the main drivers of Asian demand since August of last year, with the No.2 oil consumer taking up cheap crude to fill its tanks despite slowing economic growth. Yet China could pause its reserve purchases soon as tank sites reach their limits and new space only becomes available later this...
  • Seattle's Silly War On Oil Rigs (title shortened)

    03/21/2015 2:25:27 PM PDT · by Lorianne · 14 replies
    Forbes ^ | 16 March 2015
    Reminder, The City Is Also Home To Boeing, The World's Largest Jet Maker If a plane flies over Seattle, does anyone hear it? Probably not, because they’re all down at the docks protesting the parking of drilling rigs used in the Arctic. When the port of Seattle agreed to allow Shell to park drill ships on the city’s waterfront, a “kind of civic call to arms” erupted, according to the New York Times. “A unanimous City Council lined up alongside the mayor to question the legality of the agreement with the Port of Seattle, a court challenge was filed by...
  • Pink Slips: 100,000 Jobs Wiped Out Amid Oil Price Collapse: “Spreading Like Cancer”

    03/21/2015 1:05:32 PM PDT · by Kartographer · 18 replies
    SHTF Plan ^ | 3/21/15 | Mac Slavo
    The bloodletting among the oil majors and their vast web of ancillary services has of course extended to the United States – which appears to be taking far more casualties than Saudi Arabia in the battle for marketshare. In January oilfield services giant Baker Hughes said it will lay off 7,000 employees, about 11 percent of its workforce; that number was rivaled only by its competitor, Schlumberger, which let go 9,000 workers. Shell, Apache, Pemex and Halliburton are among major oil companies to issue recent pink slips to the growing army of unemployed oil workers. In the U.S., the worst...
  • Obama Administration Unveils Federal Fracking Regulations

    03/20/2015 11:55:34 AM PDT · by Jim Robinson · 14 replies
    NYT ^ | March 20, 2015 | By CORAL DAVENPORT
    WASHINGTON — The Obama administration on Friday unveiled the nation’s first major federal regulations on hydraulic fracturing, the controversial technique for oil and gas drilling that has led to a dramatic increase in American energy production but has also raised concerns about health and safety risks. The Interior Department began drafting the rules in Mr. Obama’s first term after breakthroughs in the technology, also known as fracking, led to a surge in the production of oil and gas. The fracking boom has put the United States on track to soon become the world’s largest oil and gas producer. But environmentalists...
  • Saudi Looking Beyond Oil Price Slump As Rig Count Spikes

    03/20/2015 11:29:49 AM PDT · by thackney · 11 replies
    Reuters via Rig Zone ^ | March 20, 2015 | Rania El Gamal & Reem Shamseddine
    As the global energy industry stares transfixed at a spectacular drop in U.S. rigs, Saudi Arabia is ramping up the number of machines drilling for oil and gas despite a sharp fall in the price of crude. Industry sources and analysts say the OPEC kingpin is looking beyond the halving of global oil prices since June 2014 to a time when crude could again be in short supply. Riyadh is therefore keen to preserve what is known as its spare capacity - the kingdom's unique ability to raise oil output quickly at any given moment. But to achieve that, Saudi...