The Texas Energy Report BUZZ

September 21, 2017

Railroad Commission Executive Director Resigns

 

The executive director of the Railroad Commission of Texas has resigned, effective November 7th.

In a letter to the commission, Kimberly Corley referred to a meeting on Monday with RRC chair Christi Craddick that was the topic of a heated exchange between commissioners at their Tuesday meeting.

In that meeting, ommissioner Ryan Sitton questioned why he was not included in the decision to allow — or force — Corley to resign, with Sitton threatening to ask the state attorney general for an opinion on whether the action was a violation of the Texas Open Meeings Act.

Thursday, Sitton indeed wrote for the AG’s opinion, contending that such a firing might require an open meeting to request public discussion.

In a statement Thursday, Craddick said the commission “needed to move in a different direction under the leadership of the Commissioners.

“I had a private conversation with the executive director regarding this matter.

“My conversation took place under the advisement of counsel and was compliant with all applicable law.

“I will discuss my views on this matter in an upcoming open meeting where the subject of the issue has been properly posted in order to provide sufficient notice to the public.

Commissioner Wayne Christian stated Thursday that he believes “it is important to assure the public that I prioritize transparency and will work to ensure our agency operates at the highest standard legally and morally,

By Mike Shiloh

_________________

September 21, 2017

17% Rise in Natural Gas Motor Fuel Sales Over Last Year: TXNG

.

More Fleets Choosing Natural Gas

AUSTIN – The Texas Natural Gas Foundation (TXNG) announced today the latest motor fuel tax figures from the Texas Comptroller. Findings show natural gas vehicle sales  continue to climb. Tax collections as of Aug 31, the end of the state’s fiscal year, registered a 17 percent increase over the previous year. New fleets, such as Fort Bend ISD, Houston Metro and United Foods contributed to the growth in demand statewide.

This fiscal year’s results include fuel for the vehicles that responded to Hurricane Harvey. For example, the integrity of the natural gas pipelines allowed Freedom CNG to fuel METRO transit buses, Houston Distributing Trucks, Waste Corporation garbage trucks, AT&T service vehicles and many other fleets in Houston after the storm, which significantly helped with remediation efforts.

“Major Texas fleets such as Central Freight and UPS depended on their natural gas vehicles to keep deliveries coming to the Gulf Coast,” said State Representative Jason Isaac, TXNG President. “Houston-area natural gas prices remained stable and refueling stations were open during and after the storm.”

Isaac reported tax revenue from sales of compressed natural gas (CNG) and liquefied natural gas (LNG) motor fuel totaled $5,371,331 for the year. “At 15 cents per gallon equivalent, $5,371,331 of motor fuel tax equates to the sale of 35.8 million gallon equivalents of natural gas in the past year,” Isaac said. “That doesn’t count fuel consumed by municipal and transit fleets, which are tax-exempt and make up approximately a third of natural gas vehicles. If you add their estimated use, natural gas motor fuel use equates to about 47.6 million gallons of Texas natural gas being utilized to benefit our economy, and providing funds to our economic stabilization fund, roads, and schools.”

A “gallon equivalent” is the amount of CNG or LNG with the same energy content as a gallon of gasoline or diesel fuel.

“The latest studies show that natural gas vehicles are ultraclean compared to their diesel counterparts, especially in applications like school buses and stop-and-go traffic,” noted Isaac. “The Texas legislature recently approved several incentive programs to encourage fleet managers make the transition.”

Fleet managers interested in transitioning to natural gas, or expanding their current use, should visit the TXNG website, www.txng.org, for information on the latest incentives and regulatory changes.

The Texas Natural Gas Foundation was founded  to increase public awareness, support, and knowledge of the benefits of using Texas’ natural gas and its vital role in energy security, economic growth and benefits to the environment.  For more information, visit www.txng.org.

By Texas Natural Gas Foundation

__________________

September 21, 2017

Anadarko Petroleum to buy back shares worth $2.5 bln: Reuters

.

Anadarko Petroleum Corp said on Wednesday that its board had authorized a $2.5 billion share repurchase program through 2018, Reuters reported.

The company’s shares were up nearly 5% at $46.91 in early Thursday morning after-market trading.

.

__________________

Marathon Oil To Pay $33.1M In Foreign Tax Settlement: Law 360

.

Marathon Oil told a Texas federal court Tuesday that it has agreed to pay a group of limited partners $33.1 million to settle claims that the company cheated them out of millions in foreign tax credits in connection with a gas processing plant in Equatorial Guinea, Law 360 reported Wednesday.

The oil company and 17 partners filed a joint motion to confirm an International Centre for Dispute Resolution award on consent ending allegations against the company of breach of contract and fiduciary duties.

.

_________________

September 20, 2017

Chairman Craddick: Panhandle Producers are Essential to Texas’ Economic Success: RRC

.

AMARILLO – Railroad Commission Chairman Christi Craddick today addressed RRC’s emphasis on common sense energy regulation at the Panhandle Producers and Royalty Owners Association (PPROA) 88thConvention and Annual Meeting in Amarillo.

“Thank you to all of you who invest in the business of energy development, an industry that is critical to the economic success of our state and our country,” Craddick said. “Thanks to your efforts, our state’s energy producers, big and small, are setting the standard for American energy production, and Texas’ Panhandle producers play an important role.

“Even through the recent downturn, the Texas oil and gas industry has shown extraordinary resilience,” Craddick said. “When times were tough, the industry did what it does best – innovate. Because of your ingenuity, we’re seeing industry growth today despite the price of oil. I will ensure our rules at the Railroad Commission will allow you to continue to safely find ways to grow and thrive.”

PPROA was founded in 1929 as an industry association advocating on behalf of oil and gas producers, mineral royalty owners and industry support companies in the Texas Panhandle, Western Oklahoma and Southwestern Kansas.

By Railroad Commission of Texas

.

________________

.

September 20, 2017

Crude Stockpiles Up Far More Than API Estimate: EIA

.

US commercial crude oil storage jumped by 4.6 million barrels last week, according to Wednesday’s estimate from the Energy Information Administraton, to a total of nearly 473 million barrels.

Gasoline stockpiles dropped by 2.1 million barrels and distillates were down by 5.7 million, with propane inventories off by 1.4 million.

Crude stockpiles were up by nearly six million barrels the previous week, with gasoline inventories down 8.4 million barrels.

The American Petroleum Institute Tuesday reported an increase of 1.4 million barrels in crude.

Refinery utilization gained 5.5%, rising to 83.2 percent of total capacity while crude runs were up by 1.1 million bpd, the EIA said.

Just before Hurricane Harvey, refinery utilization was at 96.6%, the highest in 12 years.

The Texas Energy Report NEWSCLIPS

September 22, 2017

Texas Tribune

September 21, 2017

Texas railroad commissioner wants AG to weigh in on board chair’s actions

Two days after Texas Railroad Commissioner Ryan Sitton and the board’s chair, Christi Craddick, clashed publicly at a state meeting, Sitton is asking Attorney General Ken Paxton to weigh in on his colleague’s actions. And Craddick is accusing Sitton of seeking “an opportunity for political gain.” In a tense exchange Tuesday that was captured on camera, Sitton accused Craddick of trying to oust the agency’s executive director, Kimberly Corley, without consulting him or the commission’s third member. “This isn’t a dictatorship,” Sitton snapped at Craddick during the exchange. In a statement Thursday, Craddick acknowledged she “had a private conversation with the executive director regarding this matter.”

click here for more

The Telegraph (UK)

September 19, 2017

UK’s oil industry ‘entering final decade of production’

The North Sea oil industry is entering its final decade of production, according to new academic research that rejects Alex Salmond’s claims during the 2014 Scottish independence referendum campaign of an impending second boom. An Edinburgh University study of output from offshore fields estimated that only around 10 per cent of the UK’s original recoverable oil and gas remains untapped. Official figures published last week found that oil production increased by 2.9 per cent last year following a recovery in the price. However, capital expenditure dropped by around 20 per cent and it has emerged there were 60,000 job losses in the industry last year, 20,000 more than expected. It also concluded that fracking will be barely economically feasible in the UK, especially in Scotland, because of a lack of sites with suitable geology. The researchers warned that the UK will soon have to import all the oil and gas it needs.

click here for more

American Security News

September 21, 2017

In wake of hurricanes, 85 percent of Americans favor an improved energy grid

After millions were left without electricity and other energy disruptions occurred in the aftermath of recent hurricanes, the Morning Consult for the National Mining Association (NMA) conducted a poll Sept. 7-11 that found 85 percent of American voters think the U.S. should make diversifying its energy grid a priority. When Hurricane Harvey hit, it disrupted natural gas production and interrupted the operations of pipelines. Many nuclear power plants were forced to close down before Hurricane Irma hit. Additionally, the damaging hurricanes left millions of without power for days and weeks. Diversifying the energy grid would prevent such complications from occurring on such a large scale in the event of natural catastrophes, an NMA release said.

click here for more

Oil Price

September 21, 2017

Moors: The Frac Sand Industry Has A Big Problem

As you know, everything is bigger in Texas – ranches, oil fortunes, trucks, you name it. But there’s a certain court case that’s becoming a really big thing… even by Texan standards. Last week in San Antonio, Texas State Senator Carlos Uresti testified in a bankruptcy hearing. The process follows from the 2015 insolvency of FourWinds Logistics. … Now, FourWinds didn’t manufacture frack sand. It traded it. The company established a market in a high-demand product and then served as a middleman between manufacturer and end user. This is what makes this Texas court case new. These are the first criminal charges to arise from the trading in a necessary component of a drilling process. Now the company could have gone under due to the rapid decline in demand for sand that followed from falling oil and gas prices. But what put FourWinds in the crosshairs of the legal system was the allegedly deceitful and misleading way in which it attempted to raise money.

click here for more

What Energy Sources Power the World?

There are many types of maps out there, but one of the most telling ones is a simple satellite image of the Earth at night. On these powerful images, the darkness is a blank canvas for the bright city lights that represent the vast extent of human geography. The bright spots help us understand the distribution of population, as well as what …

Estimated % of adults who think global warming is happening, 2016

Yale Climate Opinions Maps has an interactive map showing county-by-county results of opinion poll questions about climate change, risk perceptions, policy reports and how often such matters are discussed in everyday life. Seventy-percent say global warming is happening yet only 53% of those asked say it is definitely caused by human activity, with fewer than half confirming that most scientists …

New map shows wind farms spreading rapidly across US

Wind power started in California in 1981 when the Altamont wind farm in Alameda County was built as a reaction to the Arab Oil Embargo of the 1970s, the San Jose Mercury News reports. But now, as a new map released Thursday shows, the industry is spreading rapidly across the United States, with more than 52,000 large-scale turbines now operating in 41 …

Here’s What Some Think Will Happen When Self-Driving Cars Become Common

   From Barron’s:   How Robo Cars Will Impact Everything Else: .. In this video, Tony Seba and the ReThinkX think tank say self-driving cars will change the world, to the detriment of the geopolitical and energy world we know today. “Oil demand will peak 2021-2030 and will go down 100 million barrels, to 70 million barrels within 10 years. And …