Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Whiting and the Scallion -- The Williston Basin, North Dakota, USA


May 14, 2012: perhaps not the Lodgepole, but rather the Red River. See this post

March 23, 2012: Nistler dry; now drilling Quale.
  • Nistler 21-25H, first Whiting horizontal Lodgepole -- no commercial hydrocarbons in the Lodgepole; shut-in after drilling a horizontal leg in the Scallion member of the Lodgepole; no hydrocarbons from this zone even after fracture.
Original Post

Elsewhere (this link is now broken, Nov 2, 2013) they area talking about Whiting's Nistler well in the far southwest corner of North Dakota, just north of Beach, North Dakota.

Back on July 30, 2011, I blogged about the Scallion formation and Whiting's plans to test it with a horizontal. It appears Whiting is doing just that with Nistler and a companion well one mile to the east, #22374, Quale 21-30 (note the lack of an "H" designation). [Update: July 10, 2012: still confidential.]

According to the well file, it appears Whiting had a bit of difficulty with the Nistler well. The sundry form says it is shut in but the NDIC website says the status is "A." The sundry form clearly states it is a Three Forks well, though the geologist's report clearly states the horizontal is in the Scallion.  NDIC reports it as a Three Forks well.

Key comment from the first link above:
Fairly unimpressive hydrocarbon shows on the mudlog.  This is close to the area where the shales disappear or is already south of where they are absent.  Apparent shut in status during high oil prices is not a positive sign.  Three Forks confusion by DMR may stem from that formation being identified by Whiting apparently by mistake on a sundry notice. 

Our Secretary of Energy Stephen Chu Is Starting To Feel Our Pain -- Remotely Connected to the Bakken

Original position: raise price of gasoline to encourage renewable projects
Changing tune in election year
Chauffeured to work; does not own a car
DC residents: gasoline is 1.4% of their annual income
City sales taxes significantly higher

Link here
Sen. Lee then asked Chu: “Are you saying that you no longer share the view that we need to figure out how to boost gasoline prices in America?”

“I no longer share that view,” Sec. Chu said.
Perhaps at a later date, when I have more time, I will link the reference explaining this exchange for those who missed it.

Chu noted:
“Since I walked in the door, as secretary of energy, I’ve been doing everything in our powers to do what we can to reduce these gas prices,” Sec. Chu told the Senate hearing.

Translation, let's count the ways:
  • invested in several solar companies that have since gone broke or nearing bankruptcy
  • moratorium in the gulf
  • permitorium in the gulf
  • slow rolling the oil and gas industry onshore
  • promoting algae as a fuel
  • mandating more concentrated ethanol (E85)
  • killing Keystone XL 1.0
  • leading the Senate in defeating Keystone XL 2.0

Wow! -- A Whiting Three Forks Gusher -- Park Oil Field

For newbies: this is what keeps me excited about the Bakken. It's like opening presents every evening.

A Three Forks well. Relatively small amount of proppant. 30 stages. 101,806 bbls in first 4.5 months.

Park oil field
Park oil field is in southwestern North Dakota; it borders Bell oil field and is northwest of Zenith oil fields. This is the area where record bonuses were paid not too long ago.
The well:
  • 20526, 2,446, Whiting, Smith 34-12TFH, Park, Bakken, s6/11; t9/11; cum 349K 1/17; 30 stages; 1.8 million lbs, sand and ceramics; WOW!

Fracking: Spelling

I linked this WSJ story on my "Frack Central" page for archival purposes.

I was not going to further discuss it, but then I noted the spelling of "fracking" used by the WSJ. Yup, they got it right.

WOW -- That Snuck Up On Me -- For Investors Only

Oil up almost another dollar
Market up over 100 points
Mostly green in the sidebar at the right


Later: Yup -- CVX hit an all-time high today, going through the $111 mark. As regular readers know, Texaco was one of the first companies in which I bought shares back in 1987 when it declared bankruptcy. I had started investing in mutual funds three years earlier, but Texaco was one of the first individual stocks I bought on my own.

Original Post

Maybe more commentary later. I was just surprised with the numbers today. AAPL hits a new, all-time high. CVX just 70 cents from an all-time high. SRE, in a failed state (California), is hitting a 3-year high, and not all that far from an all-time high -- and this despite worst regulatory environment in the country for utilities (my opinion only).

KOG, NOG, OAS, and SD all up, some as much as two to three percent. Note, two or three of these companies were recently said to be under a "short" assault.

For those playing the Jim Cramer "Are You Diversified?" game, call Jim with the following tech, solar, battery, telecom, and oil company selections. Be sure to tell him you invested in these companies two to three years ago to be diversified.
Or you could mention that you have the following five oil/pipeline companies, and see how that "diversification" is working out:
Again, this is not an investment site. Do not make any investment decisions based on what you read at this site. I make typos and errors. I have no plans to buy, sell, or do anything else with the companies mentioned in this post in the near future. See disclaimer.

The Iditarod -- An Update -- Absolutely Nothing To Do With The Bakken

A note to the granddaughters


March 14, 12:45 a.m.: What a heart breaker! Aliy is expected to come in second to Dallas Seavey, who at age 25, becomes the youngest person to win the Iditarod, this the 40th anniversary of the famous race.

Original Post
We are getting down to the wire!

At the last update, the mushers were less than 70 miles from the finish line, and they are moving about 7 miles per hour.

Before the race started, my older granddaughter and I each picked three female mushers to follow. Her best choice was DeeDee. Neither of us picked the woman who is likely to be one of the top three finishers.

My daughter and I are rooting for a woman to win, any woman to win, and Aliy Zirkle is giving the men a race for the money. She has been in the number one position much of the race. At the last checkpoint, the news was discouraging. The leader departed the most recent checkpoint almost three hours ahead of Aliy.

It turns out that the leader left three hours early, but immediately -- out of sight, and just minutes from the checkpoint -- stopped to rest. Clever, foxy, sneaky, but all's fair in love and war.
Indeed, recent GPS readings showed that Zirkle was just one mile behind Seavey. And as the race between those two heats up, they'll both be keeping an eye on Ramey Smyth who has come all the way back from 30th place to third, hot on the trail of the two leaders.
Most mushers started out with 14 - 16 dogs. The leader is down to 9 dogs; Aliy is down to 10 dogs.

Live coverage here

Standings here.

OXY USA and Anschutz Well Data Updated -- The Bakken, North Dakota, USA

The data for OXY USA and Anschutz wells has just been updated.

At the link, there will be an explanation for newbies why this update was done; for regular readers, the following two data points speak volumes.  

  • 18272, 199, OXY USA, s9/11; t11/11; F; cum 10K 1/12;
  • 18353, 2,374, Anschutz --> OXY USA, s2/10; t4/10; cum 216K 1/12;

Megaloads? Forget Megaloads? Think MegaProjects Locally

10 years of oil project construction about 120 miles south of Canadian border
Montana site
President Obama not expected to visit; expected to provide too many high-paying jobs

Remember all those stories about "Big Oil" having difficulty getting permission to truck megaloads destined for the Canadian oil sands projects over Montana and Idaho highways?

It looks like someone has taken the bull by the horns.

The project is outside Bynum, near Choteau, Montana, about 70 miles south of Browning, Montana, and about 120 miles south of the Canadian border.

Data points:
  • 160 acres just south of Bynum
  • may soon be a bustling assembly plant for oil equipment bound for Canada
  • the field on the east side of U.S. Highway 89 belongs to Lauren Engineering and Construction
  • Lauren Eng is an Abilene, Texas, company; operates throughout the United States, Canada and India
  • activity is expected to begin in late April.
  • the plant will take modular equipment from its base in Abilene and assemble it for delivery to oil fields in Alberta -- press release
  • the pipe rack modules are truck-pulled frameworks that carry large sections of specialized pipes for oil-sands refinery tank farms -- press release
  • they weigh between 40,000 and 150,000 pounds and average 80 feet long -- press release
From the linked article:
"The scale just boggles my mind," Choteau City Council president Blair Patton said. "We're hearing it could be five or 10 years of project construction. It sounds like a shot in the arm with no downside."

New Regional Website Focused on Oil -- Delving Deeply Into The Technology That Made It All Possible

Kindred, ND, man always loved bagpipes
North Dakota oil production hits record
Fargo bars offer free cell phone charging
Santorum handily wins ND GOP caucus
faces of the boom; couple near Williston
tough on youth living in Williston
publicity hound, poodle

Debbie Downer noted that there is a new website for all the news in the oil patch.
Thepatchtoday.com, which can be found at the Internet address of the same name, will serve as a general news website to the geographic area in western North Dakota and eastern Montana that is collectively known as “The Oil Patch,” or “The Patch” for short.

The site also aims to keep residents of the quickly growing section of the country informed about local and state news, features, sports and entertainment. And finally, the site will delve deeply into reporting regarding the burgeoning oil industry that is centered in the region, thanks to new technology that has made tapping into The Bakken Oil Formation possible, company executives said.
I was thrilled that we might see a real oil patch site, but my hopes were quickly dashed. When I went to the "new" website, the first story that popped up was the story on the couple that can't make it in Williston. That story has been out there for several days, maybe more than a week. The next story, about "tough for youth in the oil patch" was new to me (this particular article, not the issue), but of the same genre. So, I quickly started typing the top stories and that's what I typed up above. I didn't want to miss them.

Turns out there was no reason to worry; the stories keep going round and round. So, here they are again, with fewer typos, and more comments:
  • Kindred, ND, man has had lifelong passion for bagpipes [honest to God, this was the first story I saw when I clicked on the site; I immediately thought I had entered "The Twilight Zone"]
  • North Dakota oil production hits record, again, in January [old story; that's what advertisers are paying for?]
  • Fargo bars offer cellphone charging ... for a cost, of course [for a cost? is that a local idiom?]
  • Santorum handily wins North Dakota GOP Caucus [that's certainly oil patch news]
  • In new life near Williston, family can't make ends meet [been making the rounds for a week]
  • Boom's marginal housing tough on youth living 'The Oil Patch' [and you know who I fault]
  • Publicity hound: After lifetime of struggles,Wahpeton, ND, poodle gaining admirers [you have got to be kidding]
I won't link the site; you can find it easily but I don't want to be blamed for wasting anyone's time. Don't get me wrong; it might evolve into a great site, but a) the NEWs has to be NEW; b) it has to be relevant; and, c) it has to be relevant.  (no typo)

But this is the main reason for the new website: the site will delve deeply into reporting regarding the burgeoning oil industry that is centered in the region, thanks to new technology that has made tapping into The Bakken Oil Formation possible. Expect a lot of stories on the dangers and downside of fracking.

At least we didn't see any stories of food shortages or photos of soup lines in the Bakken in the inaugural issue.