Tuesday, September 1, 2015

I Can See Russia From My Porch - Palin; I See Putin In My Nightmares -- Obama -- September 1, 2015

Results of the poll in which we asked if we would see President Obama wearing cold weather gear in Alaska? The picture provides the story. Hard to say: looks like a heavy jacket one might wear in Washington, DC, during the National Cherry Blossom Festival. At least one reporter, in the back, had his parka on.

Results of the poll:
  • Yes, we will see President Obama in cold weather gear: 18%
  • No, we will not see President Obama in cold weather gear: 82%

Don's sharp eye caught this one.

The question is this: does the international date line running through the Pacific change the day/date by one full day or one full month? I thought it was one full day, but maybe it is one full month.

I Will Follow Him, Peggy March

Not Ready For Prime Time -- Why Did President Obama Throw His Environmental Base Under The Bus? -- September 1, 2015

  • Obama confirms global warming with walk up to Alaskan glacier
  • Obama opens up the Arctic to drilling, maritime routes 
Fascinating Story: Nixon Opened Up China; Obama Opens Up The Arctic

This is really quite fascinating.

Anyone who "knows" President Obama and his ideology knows he has no desire -- no desire, whatsoever -- to open the Arctic Ocean to exploitation.

If one is really concerned about the Arctic, one doesn't break up Arctic ice into smaller pieces to hasten it's demise.

Anyone who "knows" President Obama, there is no indication he places the US "above" any other country in the universe. In his mind, there is nothing "special" about the United States.

There is no reason to help American corporations -- especially the oil and gas industry -- exploit the Arctic.

Allowing Shell to drill in the Arctic was huge -- it was very huge -- it has opened the door to full-scale oil exploration and production in the Arctic.

Nothing he has said or done in the last several years would have suggested that he would ever have allowed Shell to drill in the Arctic.

And now another incredible announcement: he wants more military ice breakers to open the Arctic to more exploitation. His environmental base must be going nuts. Look at the Fox News story at the link. This is so incredible, the New York Times is "avoiding" the story. It's that dreadful.

Someone suggested this was a "gift" to the shipbuilding unions in Groton, CT. Unlikely. He's thrown the unions under the bus so many times, a single ice breaker means squat to the unions in Groton. Connecticut is so blue the state will probably vote Obama in for a third term as a write-in candidate. He doesn't need Connecticut unions.

He certainly did not do this to make the US military "happy." On his list of top ten favorite US departments, the Department of Defense doesn't even make the list. I doubt the president has a patriotic song on his playlist of 10,000 songs.

So, what gives. The headline at the Fox News sort of gives it away. But not quite.

Why did President Obama throw his environmental base under the bus by opening up the Arctic to a full-scale "exploitation-of-the-Arctic" race with Russia? One word: Putin.

Putin has gotten inside Obama's head.

One has to remember President Obama's DNA. DSM IV 301.81.

By this time, Obama had expected Putin to be kicked out of office (after the Crimean, after the economy meltdown, after the sanctions). But Putin is still in office. Not only is he still in office, Putin's approval ratings among his people are twice the approval ratings Obama has among US poll respondents.

But this is what really, really galls the US president. On January 21, 2017, president Obama is a private citizen, again, no longer president. Vladimir will still be president. For life.

The best thing the Tea Party could do? Invite Putin to attend the January 20, 2017, swearing in of the new president, regardless of who it is.

Whatcha Gonna Do When They Come For You, Bob Marley

Clearing Out The In-Box -- September 1, 2015


Later, 10:08 p.m. Central Time: BloombergBusiness is reporting what the rest of us already know. Utilities aren't making money off wind. If it weren't for tax credits and state mandates, intermittent energy would have died years ago.
Power producers who invested billions in turbines are finding that making money off the wind can be as unpredictable as the energy source itself.
NextEra Energy Inc., NRG Yield Inc. and Duke Energy Corp. all said a lack of sufficiently windy days cut into second-quarter sales. And neither power generators nor forecasters seem to know exactly why.
“There was a definite trend with several utilities talking about weak wind resources,” said Shahriar Pourreza, a New York-based analyst for Guggenheim Partners LLC. “This isn’t something that has been major in the past so definitely a phenomena worth following to see if it’s sustainable or an anomaly.”
Weak wind resources. LOL. A lack of "sufficiently windy days." LOL.

A scam.

Original Post

Cleaning out my mailbox. Four unrelated stories from readers or other sources that are of interest to me. I may come back to them later.

First AARP:
No love lost between AARP and me.

I Love 'Em Both

Second: Texas edges out North Dakota in one category.

Why Some Think The US Should Export Crude Oil

Third: Ecuador seeks light oil for its revamped refinery.

Remember: Bakken is the purest "light" oil out there. Too bad Louis Farrakhan and/or Al Sharpton aren't friends of Ecuador; if they were, the president would "okay" Bakken exports to Ecuador overnight.

Saudi Arabia Production / Exports -- June, 2015, Data

Fourth: update on Saudi Arabia's production / export -- June, 2015, data.  (Can't recall if this has been posted before.)
Saudi oil exports recover to 7.36 million b/d in June Saudi Arabia's crude exports recovered to 7.365 million b/d in June after falling to 6.935 million b/d in May, official data released by the Riyadh-based Joint Organizations Data Initiative showed during the week ended August 28.
Apart from the dip in May, the kingdom's exports have been above the 7 million b/d level since the beginning of this year.
And, following Riyadh's refusal to cut output late last year as oil prices plunged, Saudi production has held above 10 million b/d since March, climbing to 10.564 million b/d in June.
The volume of crude processed in Saudi refineries inside the kingdom fell to 2.099 million b/d in June from 2.423 million b/d in May while the volume of crude burned directly in the kingdom's power plants rose to 894,000 b/d from 677,000 b/d.
Much more at the link.

Top Ten Crude Oil Producing Counties In The US -- September 1, 2015

The other day I posted the top ten crude oil producing counties in the US, but did not provide the link.

This is the link (a dynamic link). The most recent data is for July, 2015.

This is the original post.

A reader wrote in wondering about Kern County, California; at one time, it was near the top of the list, among the top three as recently as 2013, maybe 2014. For the life of me I can't find any current data on Kern County oil production but I can find many, many articles on dire situation in Kern County due to low oil prices.

If anyone has a link for current Kern County, California, oil production, it would be much appreciated. Thank you.

Cold Weather Gear
Results of the poll in which we asked if we would see President Obama wearing cold weather gear in Alaska? The picture provides the story. Hard to say: looks like a heavy jacket one might wear in Washington, DC, during the National Cherry Blossom Festival. At least one reporter, in the back, had his parka on.

Results of the poll:
  • Yes, we will see President Obama in cold weather gear: 18%
  • No, we will not see President Obama in cold weather gear: 82%

Later, 9:11 p.m. Central Time: photo here answers the question; doesn't look like any evidence of global warming here. Remember, this is summer, indoors.

Original Post

I wonder if the president will be seen in cold weather gear. Forecast is for freezing weather and snow in various parts of Alaska.

Sorry about all the polls. Two of these polls will come off the list fairy soon (by the end of the week). It's possible all three will be closed out by the end of the week. 

Setting Us Up For $200 Oil -- COP To Get Out Of Deep Water E & P -- September 1, 2015

They can't "turn on a dime" in the ocean. Fox 2 Houston is reporting that COP will lay off 10% of its workforce, most of it in North America, and most of it related to "deep water." From the company:
"We have taken several significant steps as a company to strengthen our position, including reducing our capital spending and future deepwater exploration program. However, the workforce reductions are necessary to become a stronger, more competitive company."
Look out in 2020, if not sooner. And then Congress will call for investigations why the price of oil is so high.

Eight (8) New Permits; CLR To Report A Big Well Wednesday -- September 1, 2015

Active rigs:

Active Rigs76194184192200

Three (3) wells coming off confidential list today:
  • 29680, SI/NC, Statoil, Richard 8-5 5H, Banks,
  • 30603, SI/NC, SM Eenrgy, L. Johnson 4-30HN, Burg,
  • 30781, SI/NC, EOG, Shell 23-2820H, Parshall,
Wells coming off confidential list Wednesday:
  • 29366, 963, CLR, Rader 2-24H, Avoca, 30 stages, 5.8 million lbs, t3/15 cum 61K 7/15;
  • 30285, drl, XTO, Stenehjem 31X-28D, Siverston, no production data,
Eight (8) new permits --
  • Operators: Hess (4), BR (3), Crescent Point Energy
  • Fields: Beaver Lodge (Williams), Corral Creek (Dunn), Dublin (Williams)
  • Comments: the four Hess permits are for Blanchard wells, 15-155-96
Ten (10) producing wells completed:
  • 28698, 762, Emerald, Dudley Dawson 7-2-11H, Sheep Butte, t6/15; cum 15K 6/15;
  • 28699, 1,041, Emerald, Joel Goodsen 5-32-29H, Moline, t7/15; cum 15K 6/15;
  • 28700, 697, Emerald, Dudley Dawson 6-2-11H, Sheep Butte, t7/15; cum 7K 6/15;
  • 28822, 495, Emerald, Eric Stratton federal 5-36-25H, Mondak, t7/15; cum 8K 6/15;
  • 29163, 809, Hess, BB-Chapin A-LS-151-95-0403H-1, Blue Buttes, 4 sections, t8/15; no production data,
  • 29525, 445, EOG, Parshall 89-3029H, Parshall, t7/15; cum 8K 6/15;
  • 29553, A, CLR, Bridger 5-14H, Rattlesnake Point, no test date, no production data yet,
  • 29916, 922, Emerald, Dagny Taggart 3-21-16H, Mondak, t6/15; cum 21K 6/15;
  • 30207, 1,008, Emerald, Noonan Federal 3-18-19H, Boxcar Butte, t7/15; cum 5K 6/15;
  • 30478, 1,114, Emerald, Clark Griswold Federal 3-17-20H, Boxcar Butte, t7/15; cum 7K 6/15;
Recent well abandoned:
27563, AB, CLR, Holstein Federal 1-25H,

Will It Be Heidi? -- September 1, 2015

According to The New York Times, President Obama needs just one more senator to vote "yes" on giving Iran the nuclear bomb.

Washington Times also has the story. With ten more Democrat senators to still declare, it looks like Ms Heitkamp can vote "present" or even vote against, with a "wink-wink" to President Obama at the next fundraiser.

99 Balloons, Nena 
This song was a song about the Cold War and the concern Germans had about the Soviet bloc to incinerate the German people with Soviet nukes.

A Blow-Out In The Bakken, Under Control; Contained For The Most Part; Fairly Good Size; No Injuries -- September 1, 2015

I missed this one; a reader alerted me to it. Reuters is reporting:
A North Dakota oil well owned by Exxon Mobil subsidiary XTO Energy blew out on Saturday, leaking more than 550 barrels (23,100 gallons) of crude, some of which left the wellpad and seeped into surrounding grasses.
The well, located in a rural area 25 miles southeast of Watford City, was being hydraulic fractured when its pressure control valves failed and it leaked the oil and about 110 barrels (4,620) of saltwater.
The well was brought under control on Sunday morning. No one was injured.
The well, Deep Creek Federal 43X-5D (#30042), is located on the same drilling pad as four other wells and was first drilled on April 25.
This is on a 5-well pad. Two were older wells, completed some time ago. Two new wells are on the pad, and one of them was one that had the blowout.

A quick look at the other two older wells on the pad: one had a minimal geologist's report; the other has a pretty in-depth report. Background gases jumped up to over 8,000 during various pipe connections. That's fairly high pressure in the Bakken, but not unusual. If there are no equipment failures, it seems operators deal with these pressures without incident ....

... the reader that alerted me to the story had some thoughts/insights on background. There is no question the operator will study this very, very hard and will learn more about the Bakken if it turns out that all equipment and parts (valves, etc) were in good working order and that all procedures were followed. 

The size of the blowout is a fairly significant: 550 bbls. Significant in terms of getting one's attention if one was on-site or in the area to observe it. The typical storage tank on-site in the Bakken is 400 bbls.

Disclaimer: my maps may have mistakes. If this information is important to you, go to the source: Reuters and the NDIC.

North Dakota Economy: New Soybean Processing Plant About Ready To Open -- Grafton, ND -- September 1, 2015

PrairieBizMag is reporting:
Remington Seeds, an Indiana-based retail corn and soybean processing and packaging company, is nearing completion of its new $8.5 million, 80,000-square-foot soybean seed facility.
Construction and technical crews were working on finishing touches this past week in the building that features a six-story tower on the west end of Grafton, a city of 4,200 about 40 miles north of Grand Forks.
This is in the far northeast corner of North Dakota, far from the Bakken.

Automobile Sales Reporting For August, 2015

Again, the auto manufacturers get this data out the first business day following the previous month; less than 24 hours after the last sale is made in August, auto manufacturers have sales data for that month released on September 1. And yet, it will be two months before we get the oil import data for the United States.


Ford reports: strong demand for new products boosts Ford August US sales to best levels in nine (9) years. Summary:
  • Ford Motor Company: total U.S. sales up 5 percent - the best August performance in nine years;
  • Ford F-Series sells above the 70,000-truck mark for the first time this year
  • F-Series retail sales up 15 percent; 
  • commercial vans up 70 percent best August sales since 1994:
  • Ford brand SUVs reach best August sales in 12 years, with all-new Ford Edge up 36 percent and new Ford Explorer up 22 percent;
  • Ford Mustang sales up 70 percent the best August performance since 2007; and,
  • Lincoln sales increase 6 percent, providing the brand with the best August performance in seven years.
F-series pick-ups and gas guzzling SUVs setting records. Two words: cheap gasoline. Two more words: low interest rates. One more word: incentives.

Can't wait to see the EV data for August.

Alaskans Enjoying The Runaway Success Of Wind Energy -- EIA -- September 1, 2015; European Refugee Centers In Europe -- An Opportunity For A Global Entrepreneur

The EIA is reporting, Alaskans have made great strides in wind energy:
Although wind power provided less than 3% of Alaska's electric power generation in 2014, Alaska's wind power capacity has increased 20-fold between 2007 and 2014, growing from 3 megawatts (MW) to 60 MW.
This increase is notable in light of the challenges of installing and connecting large wind generators, specifically the high costs of expanding electricity transmission infrastructure in the least densely populated state. Alaska's nascent wind industry has sited utility-scale turbines along the Railbelt, the only large-scale transmission system in the state, and at distributed scale to supply electricity in remote or rural areas without grid access. 
This 20-fold increase between 2007 and 2014, took a gazillion dollars, and innumerable unsightly turbines and transmission lines across Alaska.
Hopefully President Obama's ASS will do better.

Small modular reactors, already used in Alaska by the military (or used at one time -- environmentalists may have gotten rid of them), would make a whole lot more sense. A century from now historians will look back on US energy policy and wonder, what in the world were they thinking? And Congress will be asking how much will it cost to take down the Barack Obama face on Mt Denali?

Just Do It, Already

I have no idea why this story is being tweeted? It's been in the news for the past ... 12 months or so ... but PennEnergy headlines that Exelon may shut down one nuclear generating station next month. At least one more is at risk.
The owner of Illinois' 11 nuclear reactors must decide next month whether to close its Quad Cities plant, one of three generating stations Exelon Corp. has said are in danger of closing if lawmakers don't approve a surcharge on electric bills to boost profits.
Exelon says it should be rewarded for producing reliable, carbon-free electricity that will help Illinois meet an Obama administration mandate to reduce greenhouse gases. But opponents say ratepayers should not have to bail out an unprofitable plant for a private company that's still making money.
The company learned that one of the at-risk plants — in Byron in northern Illinois — is going to make millions after a recent electricity reliability auction, while the future of the third plant, Clinton in the central part of the state, is still in doubt.
My hunch: the decision will be kicked down the road for at least another couple of months. But that part about "feeling entitled" -- "should be rewarded" -- bothers me. But yes, it appears that legislators value wind and solar differently than nuclear, but that's politics is all about. 

For The Global Entrepreneur

I think there's a huge opportunity for a global entrepreneur to take lessons learned from man-camps in the Bakken to refugee locations across Europe.

Greece, Czech Republic, Italy, France, and Germany seem prime candidates for inexpensive, state-of-the-art housing solutions for the influx of migrants. Unlike American roughnecks earning $100,000+ annually and expecting maid service, 3,000-calorie meals, hot showers two or three times daily, the migrants coming to Europe expect a whole lot less and will accept a whole lot less.

The best candidate to do something like this would be a global entrepreneur who has experience in milking federal governments for tax subsidies and grants. I'm thinking of Elon Musk, but I could imagine the MOB taking this on if Hillary does not become president: Musk, Obama, and Billary. The MOB could run the European Refugee Centers (ERCs) through the Clinton Foundation with Chelsea at the lead. She gained a lot of experience running the Clinton Foundation efforts in Haiti.  

This would be an opportunity to buy excess Chinese container ships during the coming recession for pennies on the dollar, and flipping them to European governments for thousands. Shipping container homes have come a long, long way.

It would be wise, it would seem, for Europe to jump on this sooner than later. 

And, if Hillary is in prison, this is an operation that could easily be run out of her prison cell on a private internet hook-up.

And So It Goes -- September 1, 2015

I believe that this nation should commit to achieving the goal, of building a new icebreaker, and putting it into the Arctic Sea, so that Shell can drill year 'round, safely.  -- President Barack Obama. Reuters.

"I believe that this nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before the decade is out, of landing a man on the moon and returning him safely to earth." -- John F. Kennedy, May 25, 2961, JFK Library.

So, that's what Alaskans get the nation gets out of the presidential visit, a commitment to build a single new icebreaker by 2020? LOL. I can't make this stuff up.

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Tweeting now: Canada slumps into technical recession after 2nd consecutive quarterly contraction of GDP - @CBCAlerts (meanwhile the US reported a blistering 3.7% GDP in 2Q15). Yesterday it was reported that Alberta, Canada, is reporting a budget deficit somewhere between $6 billion and $9 billion, depending which numbers you choose to believe. And, yes, that's a record for those keeping score.

Putin must be getting inside Obama's head: I heard on the radio this morning that President Obama will be doing some kind of "survival" stunt on "reality TV" while visiting Alaska. The news came just after we saw photographs of "Putin hitting the gym."

Active rigs:

Active Rigs76194184192200

RBN Energy: update on the Permian. Archived.
For the past several months shippers in Midland, TX – in the middle of the prolific Permian Basin - have been paying premiums up to $2/Bbl over the benchmark Cushing, OK trading hub price for West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude. That means shipping WTI from Midland to Cushing is a money losing proposition. Historically Cushing WTI has traded at a premium to Midland – usually at least covering the ~$1/Bbl pipeline tariff.
Today we explain how traditional price dynamics have been turned upside down.
We last looked at Permian Basin crude takeaway capacity back in May (2015) when we wondered aloud how Enterprise Product Partners (EPD) secured shipper support for their proposed 540 Mb/d Midland, TX to Sealy, TX pipeline expected online in 2017. The addition of half a million barrels of new takeaway capacity out of the Permian on a new EPD pipeline just doesn’t match current expectations about crude production in the basin by 2017. Lower crude prices and independent producers reigning in their drilling budgets to only drill in those sweet spots that remain profitable have crushed production growth expectations.
Our analysis back in May – based on RBN’s Permian crude production forecast at the time – showed that a combination of existing takeaway pipelines with those expected online in 2015 would easily exceed production needing to find a route to market by the second half of 2015. That meant too few barrels chasing too much pipeline capacity. But all of that discussion was about a hypothetical future situation - when and if the EPD pipeline comes online in 2017. In the meantime, two major Permian takeaway pipelines have commenced operations since April 2015 - leaving the market with more than enough pipeline capacity and too few barrels of crude and turning traditional price dynamics in the Permian upside down.
OPEC Tired Of Giving Away Its Oil For $50?
Probably Not

Being reported in multiple places, this from USA Today:
OPEC said in an article that it "stands ready to talk to all other producers" to achieve "fair and reasonable prices." In its monthly OPEC Bulletin, the cartel added, "But this has to be a level playing field. OPEC will protect its own interests."
Though the article, headlined "Cooperation holds the key to oil's future," does not spell out how the discussion would go, the focus would clearly be on how to moderate production levels in a way to drive up prices, which fell below $40 a barrel this month.
Walking Rigs
How Long Have We Been Talking About Walking Rigs In The Bakken?

Bloomberg has "discovered" walking rigs:
Some of the newest rigs can travel hundreds of yards to the next well under their own power, lurching along like 150-foot- tall robots on pneumatic legs that raise the equipment five inches at a time, nudging forward at about a foot per minute. While that sounds slow, it is faster and cheaper than dismantling a rig and trucking the parts to a new site nearby.
More efficient drilling rigs that cost a third less than just a year earlier are changing the face of the U.S. shale industry, helping boost per-rig output in the four largest fields by at least 40 percent since the crude price plunge began in 2014. While helping producers pump more oil, the new rigs have a downside. Companies such as Helmerich & Payne Inc., Nabors Industries Ltd. and Patterson-UTI Energy Inc. that provide the equipment face investor concern that the improvements they’ve made might translate into fewer sales in the future.
In other news, farmers are now using tractors in North Dakota.

Setting Us Up For $200 Oil

Reuters is reporting:
The U.S. oil industry pumped less crude than initially estimated this year, according to new government data that offered the clearest look yet at the impact of drillers' retrenchment in response to collapsing prices.
The downward supply revisions were "unambiguously" bullish for a global market awash with oil, said Credit Suisse global energy economist Jan Stuart, suggesting the oft-cited resilience of U.S. shale producers to lower crude prices might have been overstated. Oil prices surged by as much as $3 a barrel on Monday, with some traders citing the new data.
Decreased production at a time when gasoline demand is setting new records.