Sunday, January 24, 2016

Flint, Michigan -- January 24, 2016

A great, great analysis of the Flint, Michigan story, at least what little I know about it. Google: A 'man-made disaster' unfolded in Flint, within plain sight of water regulators.

Yes, there are lessons here to be learned, and if one connects enough dots, there's a Bakken connection.

Super Bowl

I'm sure I looked forward to a lot of Super Bowls in the past, but I don't remember when I last looked forward with so much anticipation as Super Bowl L. Maybe it's the new (Cam) vs the old (Peyton).

The Denver Broncos - New England Patriots was an incredibly exciting game; I never count Brady-Belicek-Patriots out; they are a machine.

I wonder if anyone predicted a blowout by the Carolina Panthers -- what was it five interceptions? 49 - 15.

Sweet Caroline, Neil Diamond

Diesel, At Least In North Dakota, Really Is Inexpensive -- It Helps That There Is No Manadatory Ethanol Additive To Diesel -- January 24, 2016

Earlier I posted a note about diesel demand in the US. Don sent me a nice graphic of the prices paid for gasoline and diesel this past year:

There are many explanations for this but the bottom line is that the price of gasoline has not changed much this past year, but the price of diesel has dropped considerably -- almost a dollar a gallon -- this past year.

If the font is too small to read, the link is here.

One wonders how much mandatory ethanol additives are keeping the price of gasoline higher than it otherwise would be. Also, in the past year, the diesel topping refinery west of Dickinson has come on-line.

Flashback: Midwest Blizzards -- January 24, 2016


January 26, 2016: AFP is reporting:
The storm, which affected some 85 million people, was blamed for at least 33 deaths as it slammed much of the US east coast from Friday into early Sunday.
I assume motor vehicle deaths (especially due to drunk driving) and homicides were way down. Overall, my hunch is that the storm prevented more deaths than it caused.

January 25, 2016: just before going to bed last night, a last-minute look at the news -- 29 deaths "blamed on snowstorm Jonas," most car accidents and folks shoveling snow. Some data points:
  • the storm affected, according to various sources, 50 million people, 75 million people, or even as many as 85 million people
  • US population is 350 million 
  • 80/350 = 23%
  • annual motor vehicle deaths = 33,000 (wiki); daily 33,000 / 365 x 2-day storm = 180 expected motor vehicle deaths across the US x 23% = 40 motor vehicle deaths predicted 
  • 29 deaths "blamed on snowstorm Jonas" -- half motor vehicle deaths, half other (shoveling snow, hypothermia, drowning, etc)
  • annual deaths in the US: 2.6 million /365 days = 7,000 deaths * 2 days = 14,000 deaths x 23% = 3,000 deaths expected over two days in a US population of 85 million 
  • homicide deaths were most likely down significantly
It helps me to put things into perspective. Disclaimer: I often make simple arithmetic errors. Do not make any life insurance or annuity decisions based on this data. If this is important to you, which I'm pretty sure it isn't, go to the source.

Original Post
This is not ready for prime time, and I will probably regret posting it but I'm reading the biography of Ayn Rand and it helps put things into perspective.

Time Magazine reported two year ago:
Freak Blizzard Kills Tens of Thousands of South Dakota Cattle—and Washington Does Nothing. An unexpectedly early winter storm buried cattle ranchers in South Dakota.
And no executive order from President Obama to assist these South Dakota ranchers.
They're trying to rebuild, but the shutdown in DC and the lack of a farm bill holds them back.

What has happened to the ranchers of South Dakota this month goes beyond the bad luck ranchers know might always be in the cards.
A massive and unexpectedly early blizzard rocked western South Dakota from Oct. 3 to 5, pummeling parts of the state with up to 4 ft. of snow.
Ranching is one of the biggest industries in South Dakota, home to some 15,000 beef farms and 3.85 million head of cattle, and the cattle were not ready for the early storm. Beef cows and calves—which hadn’t yet developed the heavy coats that see them through the cold winters of the northern Plains—were soaked first by freezing rain and then buried in the snow. Tens of thousands of cattle suffocated or froze to death. Days later, the bodies of dead cattle are still being buried or burnt.
The South Dakota Stock Growers Association estimated that 15 to 20% of all cattle were killed in parts of the state, with some ranchers losing more than half of their herds. “Families are traumatized,” Sylvia Christen, the executive director of the group, told Reuters. “These animals depended on them, and they couldn’t help.”
And thanks to the ongoing government shutdown, the ranchers haven’t gotten much help either.
Last month in Texas, as reported by Breitbart:
The Texas blizzard “Goliath” may have claimed more than 30,000 animals this week in Texas.

A statement obtained by Breitbart Texas from the Texas Association of Dairymen (TAD) says that the winter storm named Goliath “hit hard at the heart of the Texas dairy industry.”

The reduction in the state’s milk supply, and dairy and other financial losses, as well as the emotional impact on farmers of losing their animals, is enormous, says TAD Executive Director Darren Turley.

Turley said it wasn’t until Tuesday that many dairy producers in the area largely impacted by the storms – from Lubbock west to Muleshoe, Texas, and north to Friona – could gauge the impact by surveying their property.

Turley says that the region includes half of the state’s top ten milk producing counties which amounts to about 36 percent of the Lone Star state’s dairy cows – an estimated 142,800 cows. Turley estimates that about five percent of the mature dairy cows, and a yet-undetermined heifers and calves were killed. He expects losses to climb as farmers are able to survey the damage.
Both stories barely reported, hardly remembered.

Yes, 19 deaths -- maybe more in the northeast -- but 70 million people in the snow-affected area (19/70 million = 0.00003%) -- but in the big scheme of things -- and I know I will get a lot of flack for such unsympathetic remarks -- but in the big scheme of things, it appears that much of what happened this past weekend will be nothing more than a minor inconvenience for most. But we will hear about it "forever."

But some days, it seems, I have more sympathy / empathy for cattle and their handlers than for our leaders in Washington, DC.

There are other lessons learned here, but enough for now. I probably have my priorities misplaced.

When One Absolutely, Positively Needs Reliable Electricity, One Goes With Fossil Fuel -- January 24, 2016; Diesel Fuel Demand Rising -- EIA; US Distillate Consumption At 10-Year Low -- January 24, 2016

This reminds me of the old commercial, "When it absolutely, positively has to be there ...."

When one's electricity source absolutely, positively has to be there, one does not choose intermittent energy; one goes with reliable GE gas-powered turbines. Reuters is reporting:
For years, crippling electricity shortages have plagued Pakistan, creating challenges for residents and businesses alike, and fixing the problem has become a priority for the Federal Government of Pakistan. To address this, GE will provide two high-efficiency 9HA gas turbines, one steam turbine and two heat recovery steam generators to .... PowerChina, for the new 1.2 gigawatt Haveli Bahadur Shah power plant.

The steam turbine and HRSGs have been engineered by Alstom, and with GE’s recent acquisition of Alstom’s power and grid businesses, they have been incorporated into GE’s portfolio. PowerChina will handle engineering, procurement and construction of the plant.
Regardless of where one stands on the issue of intermittent energy, it is obvious that intermittent energy is a "luxury" only rich countries can afford. And regardless of how much money a country has, when that country absolutely, positively needs uninterruptible electricity, one goes with fossil fuel.


Hydrogen -- An EIA Energy Cookie

Reported a few days ago, I'm still clearing out my in-box:
Refineries use hydrogen to lower the sulfur content of diesel fuel. Refinery demand for hydrogen has increased as demand for diesel fuel has risen both domestically and internationally, and as sulfur-content regulations have become more stringent.
EIA data show that much of the growth in hydrogen use at refineries is being met through hydrogen purchased from merchant suppliers rather than from increased hydrogen production on-site at the refinery. The increased use of purchased hydrogen has implications for the refining industry's use of natural gas as a feedstock…Comparing 2008 and 2014, on-site refinery hydrogen production changed very little (less than 1%), while hydrogen supplied by merchant producers increased by 135. --- EIA
For a distillate fuel oil definition, see this link

"Demand for diesel fuel has risen...." --- they must be talking about long-term trends. I was not aware of an increasing demand for diesel domestically right now .. this is what John Kemp is reporting about diesel fuel demand, last week:
US distillate consumption is at 10-year record lows.  
Link here.

A couple of weeks ago:

Previous week:


It's bad enough that NASA/NOAA recalibrated thermometers and moved thermometers to new locations to help support the global warming story, but when agencies like the EIA grossly mis-interpret the data, it's pretty frustrating. Maybe I'm mis-reading something. It wouldn't be the first time I mis-read something.

For more on high-low sulfur oil see this link

Not Much Being Reported Monday; Five (5) More Bakken DUCs; One Red River B Well -- January 24, 2016

Initial production data being reported today, Monday, January 24, 2016:

Monday, January 25, 2016
  • 30751, SI/NC, XTO, Amundson 44X-22H, Siverston, no production data,
  • 31218, SI/NC, XTO, FBIR Resse 43X-33F, Heart Butte, no production data,
Sunday, January 24, 2016
  • 31304, 53, Luff Exploration, Tescher P-25H, Corey Butte, a Red River B well; a directional well that will start in SESE section 25 and end in NWNW section 25. The top of RR Upper "B" was encountered at 9,096.5 feet TFD; a total of 4,898' of lateral was drilled; 96% remained in Upper "B" porosity. Low background gas; max at 1293 units. 640-acre spacing. Corey Butte is a 4-section oil field in the far southwest corner of North Dakota; its two southern sections sit on the South Dakota state line; it is due south of Bowman, on the east side of US Highway 2; t10/15; cum 3K 11/15; Saturday, January 23, 2016
Saturday, January 23, 2016
  • 30752, SI/NC, XTO, Amundson 44X-22CXD, Siverston, no production data,
  • 30989, SI/NC, EOG, Van Hook 73-1411H, Parshall, no production data,
  • 31219, SI/NC, XTO, FBIR Resses 43X-33C, Heart Butte, no production data,