Stories by the author
Miles per Acre per Year
During the late innings of the ICE-age (as in the Internal Combustion Engine age), it has become clear that feeding gasoline and diesel to the next billion new cars is not going to be easy, or cheap. In China alone, 500 million new vehicles expect to jam the roads between now and 2030.
As stated previously, asset monetization by small E&P operators will start in earnest in the second half of this year out of cash flow necessity. Most, if not all, smaller market capitalization companies, public or private, are still free cash flow negative (operating cash flow less capital expenditure) and only a few of the larger ones are now, or will be, based on guidance.
In the pantheon of American culture, no event is more iconic and distinctly American than the Super Bowl. Like all things American, the Super Bowl is huge, expensive, and a source of incredible passion for fans. Just running a 30-second commercial to the more than 100 million people that watch the game costs nearly $5 million.
So how much electricity and energy go into putting on the Super Bowl?
The fallout of the collapse in oil prices has many side effects apart from the decline of rig counts and oil flows.
Oil production in North Dakota has exploded over the last five years, from negligible levels before 2010 to well over a million barrels per day, making North Dakota the second largest oil producing state in the country.
The financial pages of Canadian newspapers have been full of headlines lately announcing the potential of two large shale oil fields in the Northwest Territories said to contain enough oil to rival the Bakken Formation of North Dakota and Montana.
In the age of derivatives, swaps, and electronic money transfers, a new form of warfare has emerged, financial warfare. Recently, the US has passed sanctions on countries such as Syria, Venezuela, and North Korea, but the majority of energy related sanctions passed have been targeted at Iran and Russia.
An estimated 68 percent of Russia's government revenue is derived from oil and gas exports, while 80 percent of Iran's revenue comes from oil exports. That presents a very large target for the use of financial weapons.
Although some US oil companies are struggling with low oil prices, a new wave of innovation is hitting the oil patch, allowing for a significant reduction in drilling costs.
Is US shale about to make a comeback?
Oil prices have rebounded strongly since March. The benchmark WTI prices soared by more than 36 percent in two months, and Brent has jumped by more than 25 percent. There is a newfound bullishness in the oil markets – net long positions on Brent crude have hit multi-year highs in recent weeks on a belief that US supply is on its way down.
According to OPEC's latest monthly oil report, Saudi Arabia boosted its oil output to 10.31 million barrels per day in April, a slight increase over the previous month's total of 10.29 million barrels. That was enough for the de facto OPEC leader to claim its highest oil production level in more than three decades.
The Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) new mercury pollution regulations that took effect last month opened the floodgates for a new multi-billion-dollar energy industry that has investors scrambling to get in on second-generation technology poised for massive revenue gains.
When the EPA measures to curb mercury pollution from coal-fired power plants over 25 megawatts took effect on 16 April, it was not only environmentalists who were popping the champagne corks—technology companies specializing in mercury remediation broke out the glasses as well.
Outside of an individual's oil stock holdings, damage to the economy from the fall in oil has been pretty minimal so far. Indeed, the price cut in home heating oil and gasoline has probably outweighed the damage from lower oil prices… so far. Unfortunately, this situation may not last.
Tesla's announcement last week about creating a new line of batteries for use by businesses, consumers, and the electrical grid at large is a game-changer for the industry. Currently, when individuals or companies need back-up power, they usually rely on generators. Effective battery storage for large amounts of energy would be a game changer in that it would enable a separation of generation and use of energy produced through clean fuels like solar and wind power.