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Why Is The Shale Industry Still Not Profitable?

Why Is The Shale Industry Still Not Profitable?
Echoing the criticism of too much hype surrounding U.S. shale from the Saudi oil minister last week, a new report finds that shale drilling is still largely not profitable. Not only that, but costs are on the rise and drillers are pursuing “irrational production.”

Riyadh-based Al Rajhi Capital dug into the financials of a long list of U.S. shale companies, and found that “despite rising prices most firms under our study are still in losses with no signs of improvement.” The average return on asset for U.S. shale companies “is still a measly 0.8 percent,” the financial services company wrote in its report.

By -- Nick Cunningham- Wednesday, January 31, 2018 - Full Story

A New, Unanticipated Oil World

A New, Unanticipated Oil World
A letter in a November 1999 edition of the Oil & Gas Journal, “Running Out of Oil,” written by an industry consultant, stated 11 facts and predictions. Far from unusual, his facts were generally correct and his prognostications mainstream.

U.S. oil production was in decline in the 1990s. Oil imports were rising. This led George W. Bush to declare in his 2006 State of the Union Address: “America is addicted to oil.”

Until around 2010, in fact, “Peak Oil” was in vogue both inside and outside the industry. Pro-oil voices urged greater public-land access and less regulation to increase otherwise declining production; anti-oil voices favored government subsidies and mandates to fashion a post-petroleum future.

By Institute for Energy Research - Wednesday, January 31, 2018 - Full Story

Smart Grid Edge Technologies—all the Rave in Davos

Smart Grid Edge Technologies--all the Rave in Davos
The latest meeting of the World Economic Forum (WEF), an invitation-only event held annually at Davos-Klosters, Switzerland, has just concluded. Official cost of attendance $85,000, of course, ex accommodation costs, etc. Some three hundred invitees plus ten-times as many journalists and others from all over the world were in attendance. Some couldn’t make it due to unexpected large snowfalls in the area.

By Dr. Klaus L.E. Kaiser - Saturday, January 27, 2018 - Full Story

Despite Electric Vehicles, World Petroleum Consumption Will Continue to Climb

Despite Electric Vehicles, World Petroleum Consumption Will Continue to Climb
The Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) International Energy Outlook 2017 evaluated the uncertainty associated with the long-term effects that electric vehicles may have on energy markets using three scenarios of electric vehicle penetration. The cases ranged from electric vehicles accounting for 8 percent of the world’s light duty vehicle stock in the low-penetration case, to 14 percent in the reference case to 26 percent in the high-penetration case in 2040. In the reference case, EIA forecasts liquids consumption in 2040 to be 112.9 million barrels per day—almost 20 percent higher than in 2015. The reduction in liquids consumption in 2040 is 1.38 million barrels per day in the high-penetration case (1.2 percent of reference case levels) and the increase in liquids consumption in the low-penetration case is 1.0 million barrels per day or just 0.9 percent of total liquids consumption in the reference case.

Source: EIA

By Institute for Energy Research - Saturday, January 27, 2018 - Full Story

Resurgent US oil industry priming the economic pump

Resurgent US oil industry priming the economic pump
Crude oil prices dropped from $110 a barrel in the summer of 2014 to about $30 in January 2016. The effect on oil producers and oil-producing countries was dramatic. The Russian ruble plunged, and the Canadian dollar slipped to below 70 cents US for the first time since 2003, kicking the country into recession and snuffing out the oil boom in Alberta. Many foreign companies operating in the high-cost Canadian oil sands pulled up stakes.

One of the hardest hit countries was Venezuela, whose petro-currency crashed, leading to hyperinflation, shortages, protests and violence - a dire situation that continues to this day. Even Saudi Arabia, the world’s number 2 oil producer, had to tap its $602 billion in foreign reserves to help finance its 2016 deficit of $88 billion - almost a quarter of GDP.

By Rick Mills - Saturday, January 27, 2018 - Full Story

The Never-ending Battles of the Coral Sea

The Never-ending Battles of the Coral Sea
For at least 50 years Australian taxpayers and other innocents have supported a parasitic industry in academia, bureaucracy, law, media and the tax-exempt Green Alarm “Charities”, all studying, regulating, inspecting and writing about yet another “imminent threat to Queensland’s Great Barrier Reef.”

It has become the never-ending battle of the Coral Sea.

By Viv Forbes - Friday, January 26, 2018 - Full Story

Renewables aren’t up to the job; we need to tap the world’s vast fossil fuel resources!

Renewables aren’t up to the job; we need to tap the world’s vast fossil fuel resources!
DALLAS, Texas — Last March President Donald Trump issued an executive order “promoting energy independence and economic growth.”

While he specifically included “renewable sources,” he clearly intended to unleash the nation’s massive fossil fuel resources, which is the only conceivable way to achieve energy independence—at least for the foreseeable future.

Since the 1970s, when Middle East oil producing countries imposed an oil embargo to punish the U.S. for its support of Israel, U.S. policy has promoted energy independence.

By Merrill Matthews - Friday, January 26, 2018 - Full Story

What Could Push Oil To $100?

What Could Push Oil To $100?
If anyone thought the latest oil market outlooks of the EIA and the IEA are upbeat, here’s an even more upbeat one from Energy Aspects: The consultancy expects crude demand this year to grow by 1.7 million bpd, and says Brent could touch above $100 a barrel in 2019.

According to Energy Aspects, the reason for the further jump in prices will be a drop in new production outside the U.S. shale patch. It’s a little hard to buy that, however, if one remembers that there is 1.8 million bpd in production capacity ready to be tapped again once OEPC and Russia taper their production cuts. That alone should take care of the demand growth that the consultancy predicts for this year. That is, unless it booms by 2 million bpd, which is the top of the range forecast by Energy Aspects. But even then, the U.S. and Russia alone could take care of it: The Russian state majors are itching to expand production in eastern Siberia.

By - Friday, January 26, 2018 - Full Story

Thoughts on the Solar Tariffs

Thoughts on the Solar TariffsThe Trump Administration has enacted tariffs on imported solar cells and larger modules (as well as on washing machines). In general, tariffs are counterproductive, because they only help some producers at the expense of others, and they unambiguously raise prices for consumers. That logic applies to this case as well. However, insofar as the American solar companies that import cells and modules are some of the biggest losers in this deal, they have little grounds for complaint, as they are already receiving lavish benefits from provisions in the tax code. Two wrongs don’t make a right, to be sure, but employment in the renewables sector is arguably closer to the “natural” level after this latest move by the federal government.

By Institute for Energy Research - Thursday, January 25, 2018 - Full Story

An Entirely Predictable Bankruptcy

An Entirely Predictable Bankruptcy
On Monday, Philadelphia Energy Solutions (PES) announced it is filing for bankruptcy. PES operates the largest oil-refining complex on the east coast, with its two refineries capable of processing 335,000 barrels of oil per day. In filing for bankruptcy, PES citied its inability to pay for the 2018 cost of complying with the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), which mandates ever increasing levels of biofuel be mixed into the nation’s fuel supply regardless of demand or even whether the biofuels actually exist.

By Institute for Energy Research - Wednesday, January 24, 2018 - Full Story

Bond Market Bear Creating Gold Bull

Bond Market Bear Creating Gold Bull
Gold is climbing as bond yields rise and the dollar falls, over speculation that China is pulling back on buying US Treasuries and Japan signals it is winding down its quantitative easing program. Meanwhile, US debt continues to grow after the Republicans under President Trump pushed a trillion dollars worth of tax cuts through the Senate, that the Congressional Budget Office thinks will add $1.7 trillion to the deficit over the next decade.

The dollar, 10 year yields and golds price

By Rick Mills - Monday, January 22, 2018 - Full Story

Regulations Hurt Economics of Nuclear Power

Regulations Hurt Economics of Nuclear Power
The state of Georgia is facing difficulties keeping the construction of its two nuclear units alive. The bankruptcy of Westinghouse, the project’s lead contractor, in March and construction delays have resulted in a five-year delay in opening its units at the Alvin W. Vogtle generating station near Augusta, from initial opening dates of 2016 and 2017 to 2021 and 2022. Construction costs have almost doubled from $14 billion to at least $23 billion.

Yet Georgia utility regulators recently approved the continued construction of the units because they will be a valuable source of reliable electricity for a long time. The reactor design, the Westinghouse AP1000, is a significant advancement in nuclear technology and safety and is being successfully built in China. Benefits include plant reliability, fuel diversity, and zero greenhouse gas emissions. The Vogtle units will also help the United States compete worldwide in nuclear construction.

By Institute for Energy Research - Sunday, January 21, 2018 - Full Story

Robbing Graves or Prolonging Life?

Robbing Graves or Prolonging Life?
Nagoya, Japan, is the place where the international “Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits Arising from their Utilization to the Convention on Biological Diversity” was negotiated (in 2010) and signed onto by many countries. It became a binding international treaty (to the countries which ratified it) in 2015. Let’s just call the arrangement the Nagoya Protocol, or NP for short.

Just for information, the NP has yet to be ratified by the U.S. as a binding treaty; not likely to happen anytime soon.

By Dr. Klaus L.E. Kaiser - Sunday, January 21, 2018 - Full Story

Does Bitcoin Use Too Much Electricity?

Does Bitcoin Use Too Much Electricity?
An optimist says the glass is half full. A pessimist says the glass if half empty. And a Vox writer says if you drink 60 glasses of that stuff in the next hour, it’ll kill you.

A case in point is the recent Vox column by Umair Irfan, warning that the Bitcoin network has caused a huge surge in energy consumption. And yet, Irfan’s own article admits that even the largest estimate—which could be double the actual figure—suggests Bitcoin only uses about 0.14 percent of global electricity. It seems somewhat unfair to single out Bitcoin and ignore the other 99.86 percent of the activities that use electricity.

By Institute for Energy Research - Friday, January 19, 2018 - Full Story

The Green Empress has No Clothes

During December 2017, Germany’s millions of solar panels received just 10 hours of sunshine; and when solar energy did filter through the clouds, most of the panels were covered in snow. Even committed Green Disciples with a huge Tesla battery in their garage soon found that their battery was flat and there was no solar energy to re-charge it.

By Viv Forbes - Thursday, January 18, 2018 - Full Story

U.S. oil production sets new record, setting stage for what Trump calls ‘global dominance’

U.S. oil production sets new record, setting stage for what Trump calls 'global dominance'
Funny thing about our president and the whole “so much winning” thing. We may very well be doing all the winning he promised, but it won’t seem like it to you because all you hear about is shitholes and Russia and whatever other trivia is dominating the headlines that day. Supposedly CNN had nearly 200 mentions of the shithole thing yesterday.

Meanwhile, our global energy dominance is developing in such stunning fashion they can’t deny it even in Reuterville:

By Dan Calabrese - Tuesday, January 16, 2018 - Full Story

Blatant Blue State hypocrisy

Blatant Blue State hypocrisy
You’ve got to admire the full frontal audacity of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio, and their union and pressure group comrades in arms. Their hypocrisy, fraud and tyranny are boundless, especially on fiscal, energy and climate change issues.

Amid the seventh year of a “New York is open for business” advertising campaign that has spent $354 million thus far, they are presiding over tax and regulatory regimes, mountains of debt, intransigent public sector unions, anti-nuclear, anti-fossil fuel energy policies that are anything but business friendly—and press conferences that promise more of the same for state businesses, taxpayers and pensioners.

By Paul Driessen - Sunday, January 14, 2018 - Full Story

Trump’s Offshore Leasing Plan Could Increase Discoveries

Trump’s Offshore Leasing Plan Could Increase Discoveries

Global discoveries of new conventional oil and natural gas in 2017 totaled only 7 billion barrels of oil equivalence—a level last seen in the 1940s. (See chart below.) According to Rystad Energy, not only did the 2017 total volume of discovered resources decrease, but the resources per field also declined. In 2017, average offshore discoveries held 100 million barrels—down from 150 million barrels in 2012. The reserves replacement ratio reached just 11 percent for oil and natural gas in 2017—the eleventh straight year it was below 100 percent. The last time the reserve replacement ratio reached 100 percent was in 2006. Since 2014, exploration expenditures fell over 60 percent most likely due to low oil prices. Further, the world consumes 79 percent more hydrocarbons than it discovers. The Trump administration’s plan to open up most U.S. offshore areas to oil and gas drilling, however, could help boost investment in the sector by billions of dollars and open up access to billions of barrels of oil.

Oil & Gas Journal

Source: Rystad Energy

By Institute for Energy Research - Saturday, January 13, 2018 - Full Story

Supreme Court rejects California gold mining case

A typical suction dredge mining operation
California gold miners are reeling from a Supreme Court of the United States refusal to hear a high-profile case concerning a statewide suction dredge mining ban.

The top court denied gold miner Brandon Rinehart’s petition for his day in court Jan. 8.

By Brad Jones - Thursday, January 11, 2018 - Full Story

Bad Policies Cause Prices to Spike in the Northeast

Bad Policies Cause Prices to Spike in the Northeast
Natural gas prices in some parts of the Northeast increased by 60 to 70 times their recent rates because there is insufficient pipeline capacity in the region during periods of high demand spurred by cold weather. The recent cold weather system stressed the market as much as the polar vortex of 2014. Natural gas is increasingly being used in the Northeast for both heat and electricity, providing over half of the electricity in the region. To make matters worse, the region has shuttered coal-fired and nuclear power plants that provide reliable power. Due to bad policy, annual residential electricity rates in the Northeast average about 19 or 20 cents per kilowatt hour, compared with the national average of 12 to 13 cents. But due to the cold front experienced during the first week of January along with the so-called bomb cyclone, electricity prices rose 126 percent to $273.23 a megawatt-hour and natural gas prices rose to $87.47 per million British thermal unit on January 4.

Source: Bloomberg

Source: Forbes

By Institute for Energy Research - Thursday, January 11, 2018 - Full Story