Storage

ExxonMobil Expanding Crude Processing Capacity at Beaumont Refinery

ExxonMobil will add flexibility to process light crudes at its Beaumont refinery, increasing production capacity by about 20,000 bpd. This expansion will further strengthen ExxonMobil’s integrated downstream portfolio in Southeast Texas. The refinery can currently process 365,000 bpd and produce 2.8 billion gallons of gasoline each year. ExxonMobil said its decision to increase production at the Beaumont facility was based on the abundant supply and low cost of U.S. light crude produced from shale.

What's in Store for Halliburton-Baker Hughes Tie-Up?

Perhaps the biggest single change for the oil business since the start of the slump is Halliburton’s deal to buy Baker Hughes. The mega-merger would radically alter the oil field servicing industry leaving two giants competing and a couple of smaller firms vying to take BHI’s spot as the new number three.

Oil Sands: Is Utah the New Alberta?

Think oil sands and Alberta comes to mind. Don’t tell that to Canadian oilmen in Utah, though, who expect to begin production at the first commercial oil sands mine in the United States by year’s end. On June 24, U.S. Oil Sands Inc., based in Calgary, got approval from the Utah Department of Natural Resources’ Division of Oil, Gas and Mining for changes to the PR Spring project being built about 200 miles southeast of Salt Lake City. The company has agreed to submit a plan by Nov. 1 for monitoring the quality of air and water at the project.

Extended Slump in Oil Taking Toll on Industry, Economy

NEW YORK — As drivers, shippers and airlines continue to enjoy lower fuel prices, the oil industry is responding to much lower profits with sharp cuts in spending and employment that are hurting economic growth. Low oil and gas prices are good for the overall economy because they reduce costs for consumers and business. U.S. economic growth was higher in the second quarter, and economists say that was partly fueled by consumers spending some of their savings on gasoline at stores and restaurants.

Extension for Proposed CO-OK Pipeline Announced

The Saddlehorn Pipeline Company added a 50-mile extension to its planned 550-mile pipeline to transport various grades of crude oil from the DJ Basin, and potentially the broader Rocky Mountain and Bakken area resource plays, to storage facilities in Cushing, OK owned by Magellan Midstream Partners and Plains All American Pipeline, L.P.

Opposing Sides Face Off at Keystone XL Pipeline Hearing

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) — Opposing sides in the debate over the Keystone XL oil pipeline faced off Monday in front of the state regulatory panel that is considering for the second time in just over five years whether to approve the construction of the South Dakota portion of the long-delayed project.

Florida Fuel Connection to Invest in Petroleum Terminal

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — State officials say Florida Fuel Connection will make a $75 million capital investment to build a petroleum terminal and rail transportation facility in East Feliciana Parish, near the Mississippi River. Gov. Bobby Jindal and Florida Fuel Connection CEO John H. Armbrust announced the plans Tuesday. Jindal, in a news release, said the complex will provide a starting point for the shipment of fuel via rail to Florida, which lacks pipeline connections to regional oil refineries. The project will create 50 new direct jobs at an average annual salary of $70,000.

Revolution Pipeline Expansion Planned in Western PA

Dallas-based Energy Transfer Partners plans a $1.5 billion expansion of natural gas pipeline operations in western Pennsylvania. The 440 MMcf/d capacity project will support long-term midstream agreements with EdgeMarc Energy. EdgeMarc has drilled over 20 wells and has over 25,000 acres under lease in Butler County. As part of the deal, Energy Transfer is acquiring EdgeMarc’s Constellation pipeline in Butler County.

ONEOK Enters Permian-to-Mexico Pipeline Venture

ONEOK Partners has entered into a 50-50 joint venture with a subsidiary of Fermaca Infrastructure, a Mexico City-based natural gas infrastructure company, to construct a pipeline that would transport natural gas from the Permian Basin in West Texas to Mexico. The $450 million Roadrunner Gas Transmission pipeline project extends from ONEOK Partners’ ONEOK WesTex Transmission natural gas pipeline system at Coyanosa, TX, west to a new international border-crossing connection at the U.S.-Mexico border near San Elizario, TX, where it will connect with Fermaca’s Tarahumara Gas Pipeline.

Begin Again: Keystone XL pipeline back before South Dakota regulators

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) — The Public Utilities Commission is considering whether to approve for the second time in just over five years construction of the South Dakota portion of the long-delayed Keystone XL oil pipeline. The hearing process started Monday. The state authorized TransCanada Corp.'s project in 2010, but permits must be revisited if construction doesn't start within four years. The commission is now considering the company's guarantee that it can complete the project while meeting the conditions of the 2010 approval. It's unlikely the panel will make a decision immediately.

ExxonMobil Could Turn Guyana into Major Oil Producer

Not typically thought of when considering major oil exporters, one small country holds significant potential to join the ranks of some of South America’s much larger oil producing powers. Guyana, located along the northern coast of South America, is not an oil producer of any significance. But that could change if the large reserves of oil and gas located offshore are successfully produced.

Russia Says Shale Will Affect Oil Prices More Than Irans Return

While many observers believe the deal Iran struck with six world powers over its nuclear program may depress oil prices even further, Russia’s energy minister says the cost of producing shale oil is likely to have an even bigger impact on the world market. Iran’s deputy oil minister, Mansour Moazami, said his country’s crude exports would nearly double eventually from 1.2 MMbpd to 2.3 MMbpd once the sanctions are lifted, and Tehran has urged fellow OPEC members to adjust their output accordingly in order to keep prices stable.

Alpha Crude Connector Begins Building Delaware Basin Pipeline

Alpha Crude Connector started construction of its 400-mile Alpha Crude Connector The crude oil pipeline would serve Lea and Eddy counties, NM and Culberson, Loving, Reeves and Winkler counties, TX. The system will have 100,000 bpd capacity for oil from over 250 lease tank batteries, other local pipeline systems, and truck terminals in the Northern Delaware Basin. Construction is scheduled to be completed in November.

Shell Gets Permits for Limited Oil Drilling in Arctic Waters

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The Obama administration has given Royal Dutch Shell PLC approval to begin limited exploratory oil drilling off Alaska's northwest coast. The two permits issued Wednesday clear the way for drilling in Chukchi Sea, but with conditions. Shell can only drill the top sections of wells because the company doesn't have critical emergency response equipment on site to cap a well in case of a leak. That equipment is aboard a ship headed to Portland, Oregon, for repairs.

Forget Media Hype: Oil Set To Rebound

Despite oil prices being somewhat depressed by the hype surrounding the Iran deal – which has repeatedly been debunked as not affecting supply until, at the earliest, the first quarter of next year – expect another large oil inventory draw to come. It starts with the API inventory figures published Tuesday followed by Wednesday’s EIA report, which I expect to not only show an inventory draw of over 4 MMbbls again but continued declines in production. This is, in part, tied to growing demand in the U.S., but there are several other reasons we should discuss.

North Dakota Regulators Signal Comfort on Energy Transfer Pipeline Issues

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — North Dakota's Public Service Commission says some big environmental concerns have been addressed by the company proposing a $3.8 billion pipeline from western North Dakota to Illinois. The three-member regulatory panel says Energy Transfer Partners appears to have a good plan in place to address worries about land reclamation and river crossings. The PSC held an informal work session on the project Monday but took no action. The panel expects to meet again late next month to talk about the company's permit application.

Iran Looking to Bring 500,000 bpd Online Soon After Sanctions Lifted Probably 'Too Optimistic'

Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh thinks Iran can manage to bring an additional 500,000 barrels online right after sanctions are removed. That is probably a bit too optimistic After months of speculation and anticipation, Iran and the P5+1 nationsreached a historic agreement on its nuclear program. The deal puts limits on Iran’s ability to develop nuclear weapons in exchange for sanctions relief. Here are a few of the key points: • Iran commits to reduce its uranium stockpile and number of centrifuges. • Enrichment is banned at certain nuclear facilities.

Nexen Pipeline Spills 1.3 Million Gallons of Emulsion in Alberta

CALGARY, Alberta (AP) — A pipeline at Nexen's Long Lake oil sands project in northeastern Alberta has leaked, spilling about 1.3 million gallons of a mixture of bitumen, water and sand. The company, which was taken over by China's CNOOC Ltd. in 2013, said the affected area is about 172,000 square feet, along the pipeline's route. Nexen says the spill was discovered Wednesday afternoon and it's since been contained. Alberta Energy Regulator and the company say it's too soon to say what might have caused the leak.

Kinder Morgan To Proceed with Northeast Energy Direct Project

Kinder Morgan announced Thursday its board of directors authorized subsidiary, Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company (TGP), to proceed with the $3.3 billion Northeast Energy Direct (NED) project's “market path” segment from Wright, NY too Dracut, MA.

Northern Canada Proposes Potential Arctic Oil Pipeline

CALGARY, Alberta (AP) — Canada's provincial Northwest Territories government has been talking to pipeline companies about shipping crude oil through the Arctic, according to the territory's minister in charge of resource development. David Ramsay, the territory's minister of industry, and NWT Premier Bob McLeod, have been touting the concept of an "Arctic Gateway" pipeline, which could see Alberta crude moved north for shipment from a port on the Beaufort Sea coast.

PRCI Welcomes Pipeline Community to Tech Development Center

Research development organization Pipeline Research Council International (PRCI) officially opened its new Technology Development Center at a ribbon-cutting ceremony and tour Wednesday. “We want you to think of this place as yours,” PRCI President Cliff Johnson told attendees, many of whom represented pipeline and service companies. “How would you use this space?” The 30,000 square-foot facility broke ground July 7, 2014 on a 10-acre campus northwest of Houston with about half of the area earmarked for a state-of-the-art pull-test facility.

Judge OKs $119 Million Royalty Settlement Against Chesapeake Energy

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — An Oklahoma judge has approved a $119 million settlement in a class-action lawsuit that claimed a Chesapeake Energy Corp. affiliate underpaid natural gas royalties to owners in the past decade. A Chesapeake Energy spokesman said on Monday that the company is pleased that Beaver County District Judge Jon K. Parsley approved the settlement agreement. He said that the company looks forward to further strengthening its relationships with its Oklahoma royalty owners. The company didn't admit fault and denied that it did anything under the law in the agreement.

Price Gregory President Discusses Accomplishments, Semi-Retirement

Price Gregory President Michael Langston recently announced his retirement after a 35-year career in the pipeline construction sector. Langston joined H.C. Price in 1981. Following a merger between H.C. Price and Gregory & Cook Construction, Price Gregory was formed. Price Gregory was later purchased by Quanta Services and Langston was named president of the company.

Fewer Passenger, Freight Rail Delays Attributed to Drilling Decline

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — Delays in Amtrak service and agricultural product shipping have eased across the Upper Midwest in part because weak oil prices have prompted a drilling slowdown in North Dakota, officials said. Along with recent track upgrades, a recently completed pipeline and a new North Dakota refinery also has resulted in fewer oil-laden trains, freeing up rail space and lessening the potential for another disastrous derailment, like the 2013 explosion in Quebec that killed 47 people, involving crude from western North Dakota's oil patch.

PHMSA Issues Rules for State Pipeline Excavation Damage Prevention, Enforcement

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) today announced the issuance of a final rule to establish the process for evaluating State excavation damage prevention programs and enforcing Federal standards in states where such requirements are inadequate or do not exist.

California Gas Prices May Top $4 a Gallon Despite National Downward Trend

CAMARILLO, Calif. (AP) — While gas prices nationwide are on a downward trend, California is experiencing a spike that could see prices top $4 a gallon before easing again, according to analysts. A shortage in oil and other components used in refining California's unique blend of less-polluting gas was one of the reasons for the price jump, industry analyst Trilby Lundberg said. A slowdown in imported crude and a refinery shutdown in Torrance also caused wholesale prices to skyrocket, experts said.

World News: Report Outlines Climate Framework, Spending

Development of a clear climate framework and a global emissions target is essential if $48-53 trillion for a new sustainable energy infrastructure is to be delivered, according to a new report from the World Energy Council. The findings are discussed in the fifth edition of the energy leaders’ dialogue series, the World Energy Trilemma Report, ‘Priority actions on climate change and how to balance the energy trilemma,’ released by the World Energy Council and project partner Oliver Wyman, along with the Global Risk Centre of its parent Marsh & McLennan Companies.

EIA: Annual Energy Outlook Through 2040

The latest <em>Annual Energy Outlook 2015 (AEO2015)</em> prepared by the federal Energy Information Administration (EIA) presents long-term annual projections of energy supply, demand and prices through 2040. This analysis focuses on six scenarios: a reference case, low and high economic growth cases, low and high oil price cases, and the high oil and gas resource case.

Company Blamed for 31-Acre Sinkhole Sues Oil Company

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The company blamed for a 31-acre sinkhole that forced 350 rural Louisiana residents out of their homes has sued Occidental Petroleum Corp., claiming that negligent drilling and production contributed to the damage. Texas Brine Co. said Occidental and Oxy USA Inc. should have to cover more than $100 million in damages that Texas Brine has paid or will have to pay. Occidental did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the lawsuit, filed Thursday in Assumption Parish.

SGA Chairman Says Bring on the Challenges

For every opportunity in the natural gas business there is an equal challenge, and conversely, every challenge can be turned into an opportunity. That’s the nature of the gas business today, but as any industry observer will tell you, that’s been the nature of the beast for the last 15 years.