Monthly Archives: August 2009

Texas oil jobs still falling

Employment in Texas’ oil and gas industry “remains in a free fall” according to the Texas Petro Index, with more than 32,000 jobs lost this year. Employment in the sector peaked at 240,000 in December but has dropped to about 207,700 as of July, based on Texas Workforce Commission data, says Karr Ingham, an economist […]  More »

A little shale gas skepticism from Matt Simmons

This weekend we reported on a perspective that the oil industry’s 150th anniversary may be the beginning of a natural gas era in the U.S., thanks to the lower CO2 releases from the fuel and the abundance of gas-bearing shale. Now for something completely different. A drilling rig rises in Arkansas’ Fayetteville Shale Play (Southwestern […]  More »

Baker Hughes/BJ Services: Analysts weigh in

Here are some of the notes analysts put out this morning about Baker Hughes’ $5.5 billion takevoer of BJ Services: From Simmons & Co.: • A logical strategic combo and somewhat expected. • BHI’s spin-off of BJS many years ago has now been reconsolidated and, in doing so, fills a compelling strategic need for BHI […]  More »

Chron Energy Newslinks | 08.31.09 | Is M&A coming back to the oil patch?

• Baker Hughes to buy B.J. Services for $5.5. billion. • Nuclear power foes get one leg to stand on in challenging expansion at STP. Pot shots at a nuclear fuel truck headed there are worrisome, say watchdogs. • Oh frac! Chemicals found in drinking water near natural gas drilling site. • Oil’s next 150 […]  More »

STP nuclear foes get to intervene on one issue, others pending

Opponents of the expansion of the South Texas Project nuclear power plant near Bay City have won the right to intervene on one point of contention and are waiting on rulings for several other issues. A panel at the federal Nuclear Regulatory Commission said the project will have to consider how a severe accident at […]  More »

Chron Energy Newslinks | 08.28.09 | Regular, unleaded or seedless?

• NRG’s David Crane on energy policy: think globally, act regionally. • College Station company wants to put a watermelon in your car’s gas tank. • Energy exec to lead Port of Houston. Alec Dreyer was with Horizon Wind and Dynegy, on boards of “smart grid” tech and carbon-credits firms. • UT’s Henry Hu may […]  More »

Chron Energy Newslinks | 08.27.09 | Happy birthday oil, clunkers deals for the kitchen

• “Cash for clunkers” comes to your kitchen with incentives to replace inefficient appliances. • Production costs rise as natural gas prices sag, say NAPE attendees. • Canadian natural gas may hit $1, already below $2. • Valero closes Aruba refinery, halts search of overseas acquisitions. • A brief history of oil on its 150th […]  More »

The EPA regulatory option

Two days ago, I wrote in this blog about the difference between passing a comprehensive climate change bill and not doing so to focus on the fact that there are “costs” to doing nothing (quite large costs as I described).  However, a sharp eyed observer noted that even if the US Congress doesn’t pass a […]  More »

What's worse: 'train-wreck' or 'Frac Act'?

The steady rise in natural gas inventories with 10 more weeks left in injection season is “quickly approaching a train-wreck,” say the folks at Barclays Capital: A Devon Energy rig in the Barnett Shale. (Kevin Fujii/Chronicle) “A marginal improvement in demand will help to narrow the y/y surplus, and domestic production is already in decline. […]  More »

Chron Energy Newslinks | 08.26.09 | 'Energy independence' talk just baby kissing?

• ConocoPhillips gets OK for offshore Bangladesh exploration. • Huge offshore find has Brazil forgetting about its alternative energy successes. • Parker Drilling’s massive Liberty rig sets up on North Slope. Houston firm will operate for BP under 2 year contract. • U.S. politicians’ talk of energy independence as useful as kissing babies, says Saudi […]  More »

A rebuttal to API's refinery/climate change study

Victor Flatt, our new guest blogger, has posted an item in response to the American Petroleum Institute’s study that says the pending climate change law will ruin the U.S. refining industry. In a nutshell: the law requires importers of fuels to have emissions credits for the products they ship into the U.S., meaning they wouldn’t […]  More »

Reports on API’s climate change study miss some important facts

Yesterday, the API released a study claiming that imposition of House Bill 2454 (ACES) would shift a significant amount of refining capacity of domestically produced fuels (about 10% more than business as usual) from the United States to foreign countries. As noted in Tom Fowler’s energy blog, the study makes several assumptions which ignore things […]  More »

Dan Yergin on 150 years of oil

The threat of peak oil looms and climate change legislation is rolling through the halls of Congress, but the 150-year-old oil industry is looking more relevant than ever, says author Daniel Yergin. 50 years before Spindletop, there was Titusville. (Pennsylvania Historical & Museum Commission, Drake Well Museum Collection) The founder of Cambridge Energy Research Associates […]  More »

Buckshot in nuclear transport truck: terrorist or bubba?

Target practice in rural Louisiana? Big deal. Target practice using the side of a truck carrying uranium fuel rods? That might be worth another look. Units 1 and 2, South Texas Project nuclear plant (John Davenport/San Antonio Express-News) Sometime in the early morning hours of Sept. 20, 2008 someone took a shot at a truck […]  More »

Chron Energy Newslinks | 08/25.09 | Oil and gas go their own ways

• Oil and natural gas futures see widest split since 1990. • Newfield to cut production by 2.5 Bcfe in response to lower natural gas prices. • Crude retreats from 10-month high on fears of tightening in China, tepid world economic rebound. • Aker Exploration and Det norske to merge. • API study says Waxman-Markey […]  More »
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