Saturday, October 6, 2012

Who Is Doing The Permitting In North Dakota?

As of October 5, these are the number of permits issued so far in 2012 for the following operators, and then farther down, by county:
Abraxas: 8
American Eagle: 11
Baytex: 16
BEXP: 179
BR: 63
CLR: 233
EOG: 44
Fidelity: 45
Hess: 179
Hunt: 27
KOG: 51
MRO: 50
Newfield: 23
Oasis: 70
Petro-Hunt: 81
QEP: 23
Samson Resources: 47
Slawson: 51
SM Energy: 37
Triangle: 30
Whiting: 154
XTO: 53
By county:
Divide: 119
Dunn: 328
McKenzie: 558
Mountrail: 305
Stark: 73
Williams: 337
I don't know if there are any surprises in the list, except perhaps the aggressive BEXP permitting program. (Note: my data base and/or my counting could be off by one or two permits, but it's pretty close.)

On Track for 2,460 New Permits This Calendar Year, The Williston Basin, North Dakota

Just two days, I posted that at the rate of new permits being issued, North Dakota was on track for 2,439 new permits this calendar year.

One day later, with the report of 22 more permits, North Dakota is now on track for 2,459 new permits this calendar year.

Back on June 1, 2012, I posted these stats:
My database showed the following number of permits (may or may not include salt water disposal wells):
  • 2012: 2,093 (estimate) -- based on 866 permits issued as of May 31, 2012
  • 2011: 1,940
  • 2010: 1,684 
  • 2009: 629
  • 2008: 956
  • 2007: 497
  • 2006: 422
The pace of permitting has increased significantly since June 1, 2012.

Fast Facts About the Bakken picked up this story first posted in The Dickinson Press/InsideClimate News.

Go to the link to see an impressive list of facts about the oil patch in western North Dakota. I won't post a summary of the list for now, since The Dickinson Press deserves the credit, and deserves your visit. If I remember, I will post the list of facts at a later date, since regional stories are often archived and difficult to find after a few months.

Okay, one amazing statistic that should catch the attention of Wall Street:
First International Bank & Trust of Watford City, the biggest bank based in the state’s oil counties, had total deposits of $1.03 billion at the end of June, up from $629 million in June 2006.
One billion dollars.

It also has a great steak restaurant in its bank complex. If you visit the Bakken, this bank is a must-visit destination, as is the Powder Keg in Fairvew, Montana.

No More Updates/Blogging For Awhile: Soccer Awaits


October 18, 2012:
CMDY DAILY SHOW 2,806,000 
FOXNEWS GRETA 2,753,000 
FOXNEWS BAIER 2,567,000 
FOXNEWS SHEP 2,355,000 
FOXNEWS FIVE 2,242,000 
CMDY COLBERT 1,912,000 
MSNBC MADDOW 1,839,000 
MSNBC O'DONNELL 1,557,000 
CNN PIERS 894,000 
CNN COOPER 662,000
Wow, look how far The Daily Show has moved up, see original post. This past week President Obama was on The Daily Show in which he said the loss of four Americans is "not optimal," referring to the Libyan debacle. Interestingly, The Drudge Report has removed Morning Joe, along with Fox News and Friends, the two morning shows. In my original post, I pointed out that Morning Joe was an outlier, possible because it was a morning show, among other reasons. Blitzer has also been removed, and Cooper has fallen to the bottom. Generally, all have seen an increase in their numbers, including O'Reilly and Hannity.

And speaking of equal pay for equal work (I do believe she works harder than he in this case):
This morning, as MSNBC's Morning Joe came to an end, co-host Mika Brzezinski had some praise for colleagues and the company she works for. "We've been talking a lot this week about women and equal pay and all these issues," she said.
"I have to say, in all seriousness, I'm very lucky to be working with you [co-host Joe Scarborough] and for a company [MSNBC] who has actually dealt with this problem transparently."
Which basically amounts to Brzezinski saying that she is "lucky" to get paid half as much as Joe Scarborough.
October 7, 2012: Based on the comments from one reader (unpublished) it appears that the original post below was subject to misinterpretation. I almost never do this, but I have updated the original post without showing where the changes have been made. I was trying to make a point regarding television ratings, not a political point. The point I'm trying to make is to question why a conservative, "Joe," is an out-lier in the ratings. The conservative talk shows are in the upper half of the ratings list below; the only conservative, not only in the bottom half, but at the very bottom of the list. It may be nothing more than the time-slot. If so, The Drudge Report should point that out. The only competitor in the list below to "Joe" in the same slot is Fox and Friends, and it, too, is at the bottom of the FoxNews list.

Original Post

From the Drudge Report. These are the numbers for October 4, 2012; the rankings (or the numbers, for that matter) don't change much from day-to-day. I find it interesting that two comedy "news" shows out-rank ALL MSNBC news talk shows and all CNN news talk shows (except of course CNN News and CNN Headline News, which are not reported).

There is an interesting out-lier in the list below. Most agree that the top half of the list is conservative in content and commentary; most agree that the bottom half of the list is liberal in content and commentary. But then the outlier: "Joe" is a conservative and he is at the bottom of the list -- way at the bottom with about as many viewers as North Dakota has people. Why is he not in the upper half of the list? Of course, his is a morning show and that may be the reason (Fox and Friends is also a morning show but it is not really in the same genre as "Joe."

Having said all that, it's incredible that with the ratings, "Joe" has kept his all-liberal line-up and worse, has kept the person who reads the news. I wouldn't want him to replace that individual with Peggy Noonan to "read the news" but Ms Noonan might improve the ratings for "Morning Joe." I would assume, but could be wrong, that "Joe" would like to increase his viewership. Based on The Drudge numbers, conservative talk shows are winning the ratings war. One wonders if the supporting cast for "Joe" was less liberal if he would attract a larger audience. Maybe not: it might all have to do with the time slot for his show. Maybe folks are not so interested in "all politics all the time" at 7:00 a.m. as they are with "all politics all the time" at 7:00 p.m. Different demographics for the two viewing times, I would assume.

But, wow, "Joe" -- who could be so much better without his current line-up -- trails CNN Cooper! [I haven't watched any of the morning shows -- much of television at all, for that matter -- since July, 2012, so it's possible his line-up has changed. Though I doubt it.]

Good luck to all. Enjoy your day.

FOXNEWS SHEP 2,243,000
CMDY COLBERT 1,456,000
MSNBC MADDOW 1,286,000
CNN COOPER 645,000
CNN PIERS 598,000

Update on Cruz Construction

Update from a story almost a year ago. Wow, time moves fast in the Bakken. It seems like a "New York Minute." Thank you to Don for sending link to the new story.

Here's Another Example of Tracking the Wrong Metric

From the Dickinson Press/Inside Climate News: North Dakota lags in energy efficiency.

I assume the metric is energy use per capita.

Farmers use a lot of diesel. As if to prove my point:
North Dakota ranked last among the states in the scorecard last year, and was cited as one of 10 states “most in need of improvement.” 
Great Plains states generally scored low, with South Dakota ranking 46 and Wyoming 48. Montana ranks 25, but was considered one of the states that showed the most improvement in increasing energy-efficiency, as was Oklahoma, which ranks 39. 
This is a better metric: our electric rates are among the lowest.
Although North Dakota scores low in the council’s annual ranking, state and lignite industry officials have long touted the state’s electricity rates, which rank among the nation’s lowest.  
In 2010, the most recent comparison available, North Dakota’s lignite-coal-powered electricity plants charged an average of $22.47 per megawatt hour. That compared with $21.28 for all nuclear power, $30.75 for all coal plants and $40.94 for all gas-powered plants, according to figures from the North Dakota Lignite Energy Council.
Wow, who wudda thought? Everyone talks about how little natural gas costs. Look at that: North Dakota's lignite-coal-powered electricity plants charge an average of $20 / megawatt hour, compared to $40 for all natural gas-powered plants across the US (numbers rounded).

Go to the article to see why North Dakota is at the bottom of the rankings: the state relies on market forces to drive down energy costs, not regulations from state government. Wow, what a concept.

I wonder what Minnesotans pay for their wind-generated electricity? That's a rhetorical question; please do not reply.

Saturday Morning LInks -- Not The Bakken

Sections three and four of the weekend edition of the WSJ are again incredible: the third section highlight fashion (which I ignore), food, and travel, and the fourth on book reviews and more. The article that stood out was the story of Bonnie Fisher and how she won the design competition for the Martin Luther King Jr memorial along the Tidal Basin in Washington, DC.

The article is almost a full page. One line stood out: "she hadn't visited the site in person before submitting the first competition designs." That line stood out because of the similar story about the Atlanta, Georgia, folks who talk about building the "Pyramid on the Prairie" and admit they have not visited North Dakota.

The story begins:
Bonnie Fisher was a on flight from San Francisco to Los Angeles in 2000 when she spotted a small ad in a trade magazine announcing a design competition for a memorial to Martin Luther King Jr in Washington, DC. 
Ms Fisher ripped out the notice and got to work. She began by listening to Dr King's speeches on her iPod at home, in the office and in the gym. She was struck by his repeated references to mountains and valleys as metaphors for the challenges facing African-Americans. On the notepad that she has long kept by her bed, she jotted down late-night ideas about the project. Later on, she sketch out ideas on reams of tracing paper.
Google making a man into a monument for a very fascinating story.

For investors, there are almost four pages of investment ideas in the second section. Perhaps the best: google the great dividend hunt.

ATT, Verizon: have already risen a long way; better yields elsewhere; have to be careful; others with lots of debt

Energy companies mentioned: Total, Eni, Royal Dutch Shell and BP; US energy companies have all risen significantly making these a better alternative, according to some

Others mentioned: McDonald's; Tesco (whose investors include Warren Buffett)

Again, the disclaimer: this is not an investment site; do not make any investment decisions based on what you read here.

Seeing Warren Buffett's name alongside British supermarket giant Tesco makes me want to consider a blog devoted to Berkshire Hathaway, "all Berkshire all the time"?

For a graphic display of what 7.8% unemployment means, google jobless see little improvement in outlook. But as noted over and over and over, Americans in general are content/satisfied: polling suggests four more years. By the way, I did not know this, but California has two propositions to raise taxes on themselves this year: prop 30 and prop 38. They both raise income taxes: one raises income taxes for monies for the general fund; the other raises income taxes for education spending only. That's how I remember it; I may be way wrong. If both propositions pass, the proposition with the most votes "wins." (I suppose one could say the middle class "loses" if either proposition passes; but again, it appears Californians like taxes as much as Massachusetts.)

Turkey shells Syria for the third day.
As a member of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, Turkey has the international backing to carry out operations against targets in Syria to protect its national security. 
The United Nations Security Council condemned the Syrian strikes. 
But without partners for broader military action, Turkey has no intention of securing Damascus's permission to strike Syrian targets, and the prospect of a ground incursion remains some distance away.
Meanwhile, not all is well in South Africa.
The world's largest platinum producer dismissed 12,000 employees amid continuing labor strikes that jolted the South African currency to a four-month low against the dollar on Friday.
12,000 employees. Wow. That is not good.

Finally, the op-ed pages:

Peggy Noonan on THE debate.

A fairly long op-ed: Will shale gas save Obama? America's energy revolution rolls on, and a beneficiary is the president who has done so little to advance it.

Right now, two things are helping to keep the collective heads the American consumers above water: Wal-Mart/Dollar Genera/et al and cheap natural gas.

In addition to jobs, "a giant stimulus check has landed in the pockets of [Pennsylvania's] utility ratepayers, who saved an average of $3,000 per household in the last three years due to the superabundance of natural gas created by the ... and here comes boilerplate ... controversial process of hydraulic fracturing or "fracking."

The article goes on: "Five years from now, the Philadelphia politicians who today continue to denounce tracking as an assault on Mother Earth will be trumpeting the city's reinvention as a new energy capital. Count on it."

Why did I post this op-ed? To point out how the AP stylebook prefers to spell "fracking."

The Biggest Story Next Week -- Nothing To Do With The Bakken


October 15, 2012: yup, here it is -- "reality bites" -- EU forced to give into Greece; can kicked down the road; 
Der Spiegel, the German magazine, reports that Athens will be given another two years to implement tough budget cuts and reforms
And, of course, more money from the Germans. Did anyone think otherwise?

October 11, 2012: two updates -- it looks like Germany, the EU, and the IMF cave -- they will kick the can down the road; EU will lift demands. Second thing: the largest company in Greece (Coca-Cola Hellenic) is moving headquarters out of Greece. It's hard to believe: Coca-Cola Hellenic represents 20% of the Greek bourse. So, Germany, the EU, and the IMF may walk away for now, but the situation will only get worse in Greece as more companies fail or leave.

October 9, 2012: Merkel arrives in Greece today. Everywhere the news is bad:
  • on the street: protestors in Nazi uniforms
  • in parliament: Greek debt is not "repayable" right now (maybe ever?)
  • in the news: Greek's debt nightmare just got worse -- CNBC (October 9, 2012, 7:00 a.m. Eastern);
There is nothing new in that linked article. Unless, of course, "more bad news" is "new." I read the entire article. I'm not sure why the "nightmare just got worse." It seemed more of the same. There is still boiler-plate talk that Greece won't break away from the Eurozone. The youth unemployment is 55 percent. Letting Greece go --> a failed nation-state. But, wow, the Germans must be getting tired of providing the financial/social safety net to 55% of the country's youth, seen either as sunning on the beach or protesting in the streets in Nazi uniforms. Wow, talk about biting the hand that is feeding you.
Original Post

This is an extremely sad story for the Greek citizens -- and a very, very scary story for the rest of Europe, if not the entire western world.

I think most Americans -- if they think about it at all -- consider the Greek budget crisis a story about the viability of the Euro, and the Eurozone. Some have suggested that Greece should just bail on the Euro. The country cannot. It crossed the Rubicon at least a year ago.

There is now something much greater at stake. It is possible the Greek crisis is a bigger story and a more concerning story than the impending implosion of Iran. It's possible the Mideast will "blow up" sooner than later, but it seems we've been through that saber-rattling before and somehow things just continue to muddle along. If there is regime change in Iran will many Americans notice; if there is regime change in Syria, will many Americans notice?

But Greece is a different story. It is a democratic state and the Guardian suggests that it could very well implode, perhaps even before the end of the year.
The high-wire act of placating international lenders while keeping social unrest at bay will be tested as never before when Merkel, the German chancellor, flies into Athens next Tuesday. With anti-EU sentiment at an all-time high, opposition parties and trade unions vowed a baptism of fire.
Exiting the Eurozone was probably never an option; if it was an option at one time, it no longer is. As it stands, Greek cash reserves will run out by November; and it is highly unlikely that a decision to infuse more cash will be made at the October 18th EU summit. It appears Greece imports 70 percent of its energy requirements. Except for coal and coal-fired utility plants providing electricity, I assume Greece has no other hydrocarbon-based fuel of its own: no natural gas and no oil. This was posted yesterday.

If Greece implodes, it will not simply be a change in regime. Greece will become a failed nation-state overnight. It will be Balkanized, not because that's what the Greeks want (unlike the Balkans) but because it will become "every man for himself." We may see the rise of Sparta and Athens once again.

Merkel's visit to Greece next Tuesday will be the story of the week.

Week 40: September 30, 2012 -- October 6, 2012

Bakken Operations
Random update on three nice EOG wells in Ross oil field
Random update on a very nice EOG well in Parshall field: the Hauge 1-01H
BEXP has a huge well in a relatively "new" area of the Bakken
BR reports a huge Three Forks well in Elidah oil field
Oasis with a huge well in Camp oil field
Oasis with several great wells
Re-defining the stratigraphic limits of the Bakken Pool
On track for nearly 2,450 permits this calendar year in the Williston Basin
Enbridge talking about need for yet another high capacity pipeline from the Bakken to Superior, WI
Halcon to add four to six more rigs in Bakken, Eagle Ford (not clear if in Bakken)
Bakken pricing at a premium to WTI; could last into 2013
Random back-of-the-envelope calculations: what is Oasis worth in a takeover?
Huge story: Wall Street Money and Triangle to form pipeline venture
Update on active rigs operating in North Dakota

Several stories on the run-up in gasoline prices in California; this is just one of the posts
Warren Buffett increases his energy holdings

North Dakota state economy
North Dakota state sales tax collection increased by 40% yoy
Tax sales by major city in North Dakota

Tongue-in-cheek look at the XOM-DNR deal
Maugheri vs The Oil Drum: the cornucopians vs the peak oil crowd