Friday, June 17, 2016

Twelve New Permits; Twelve Permits Renewed -- June 17, 2016

Twelve (12) new permits, the most I have seen in a long time:
  • Operators: Oasis (5), Whiting (4), SM Energy (2), Petroshale
  • Fields: North Tobacco Garden (McKenzie), Tyrone (Williams), Burg (Divide), Antelope (McKenzie)
  • Comments:
In addition, twelve (12) permits were renewed --
  • Hess (8), six EN-Kulczyk permits; two EN-Leo E permits; all in Mountrail County
  • Whiting (2), two Moccasin Creek permits in Dunn County
  • Resource Energy Can-Am, a Bervik permit in Divide County
  • Enerplus Resources, a Pluto permit in Dunn County
No producing wells completed.

Active rigs:

Active Rigs2878189184212

Note For The Granddaughters

My first spill in a long time. I wish someone had caught it on video. If I had had my GoPro on, I would have caught it but the GoPro camera would have been destroyed.

Wow, what an incredible spill.

I'm heading downhill on the sidewalk coming down to a "turn-into" the Stacey Furniture parking lot. A concern that I always have on my mind ... occurred. A black compact passed me and then cut me off, turning right in front of me. I slammed on my brakes and was able to avoid hitting the car. I crossed the entrance into the parking lot .. at the last second I saw the curb -- slammed on the brakes again, tried pulling up the front wheel to jump the curb, but did not succeed.

I came to an abrupt stop ... and the back end of my bike flew over my head -- a complete 360-degree flip, I suppose. I ended up sprawled out but did not hit my head; somehow my head stayed above the road, above the curb. I was bleeding from three spots, but minor in the big scheme of things. I'm glad I had gloves on. All limbs were working. A car stopped and the passenger -- a very nice young woman asked if I was "okay."

She remarked that she could not believe how I was "cut off." She saw it all.

The bike was not damaged, as far as I could tell, and my backpack was still in place. I didn't even think about the backpack until I was back on the bike heading home. In retrospect, I was surprised that my backpack stayed on my back, and in place.

The best part about all this ... it happened at rush hour, so a lot of drivers and passengers saw a spectacular spill.

I know exactly what the driver of the car was going through. It was rush hour; he was worried that if he came to a sudden stop to let me go by (which he should have done, based on the rules of the road), he risked getting rear-ended --- so in a split-second he had to make a decision -- hope he could pass me, cut in front of me, and that I would be quick enough to brake.

My mistake -- once I survived the initial insult -- a driver cutting in front of me and missing me by inches -- I should have come to a complete stop, and evaluated the situation before pressing on. My mistake, was having survived the first near-miss, I kept going, at nearly full speed, and saw the curb too late.

But in the big scheme, no harm, no foul.

I just wish it had been caught on tape. A 65-year-old cyclist sprawled out after a bike did a complete flip would have been quite a YouTube video.

First Things First -- Expand The Golf Course In The Heart Of The Bakken -- June 17, 2016

From The Williston Wire.

Watford City golf course:
The Watford City City Council has agreed to provide $1 million from the City Infrastructure Fund over the next two years to help fund a $4.5 million expansion at the Fox Hills Golf Course.
The newly formed Watford City Community Builders (WCCB) will cover the remainder of the costs. The WCCB plans to take out a $1.5 million loan and an additional $2 million loan to purchase the 38 acres of land that the city owns next to the golf course.
"The golf course board is pledging revenues from the course's operations toward paying back the $1 million loan," said David Johnson, golf board vice president and member of WCCB.
Dickinson affordable housing:
Low income housing was a major need in the Bakken during the oil boom. But in the current oil drilling slowdown, which has left many apartments at low occupancy, one company believes it is still a necessary option. Housing Solutions LLC, a Missoula, Mont.-based company, has broken ground on Northern Place, a $5.8 million, 36-unit affordable housing complex comprised of two- and three-bedroom units. 
Alex Burkhalter, founder of Housing Solutions, said the company has been eyeing the location because of its proximity to the Dickinson Middle School.
Dakota Access Pipeline:
Grocer Todd Mulske in Linton says he's having trouble keeping steaks in the cooler and potato chips on the shelf. He owns the Linton Food Center and like everyone in the area, he has been noticing the new people in town: welders, excavators and pipeline workers of all stripes.
Many show up in the store at about 5 to 6 p.m., looking for something to throw on the grill for supper and pack in the lunchbox for the next day's work. "Right now, we're trying to keep up," Mulske said. "The store's been crazy."
That's a good kind of crazy in his opinion, to have hundreds of workers with the Dakota Access Pipeline living in the area, shopping at local stores like his and filling rental units.
Linton, ND (65 road-miles southeast of Bismarck, on State Highway 83, on the east side of the river; about 10 miles directly north of Lawrence Welk's home)
A Note For The Granddaughters
Scottish Hip-Hop

This brings back fond memories, 2011 - 2014.

Years ago the US Air Force sent me to northern England, near the Scottish borders. I was assigned to a small military installation; I was there off and on for four years. Of my thirty years in the Air Force, this installation became my favorite and a second home those years. My closest male friend was Derek. He had a Scottish brogue; it was wonderful, as it is in this commercial:

At the time, I had never drunk Scotch, or if I had, it was minimal and by exception. One evening around Christmas time he invited me over to taste several different Scotches. I could never "get into" Scotch at that time. About a year ago, I decided to finally "figure out" Scotch. Several books later, and several tastings later, I now understand Scotch .. at least to the extent I am satisfied.

Reason #83 Why I Love To Blog -- June 17, 2016

Go back and look at the energy graphic at this link posted earlier today; here it is again:

I skipped over it earlier, but noted that the nuclear energy line after 2020 (although, almost imperceptibly one can almost see a slight dip between now and 2020, or thereabouts) is absolutely flat. Flat as a pancake.

Shortly after I posted this graphic, Don sent me a link to this story about the decision to close the Fort Calhoun nuclear power plant in Nebraska. The decision was made simply for economic reasons.
The decision comes after the utility over the past decade has sunk nearly $700 million into Fort Calhoun — $383 million in 2006 to refurbish the plant and extend its license to 2033 and nearly $300 million in the wake of a devastating 2011 flood and subsequent regulatory problems. 
Still, even after pouring that much money into the now-doomed plant, it’s time to pull the plug, OPPD board members said Thursday.
It cost OPPD about $71 a megawatt-hour last year to generate power at Fort Calhoun, double the national industry average of $35.50; the utility can purchase power on the open market for about $20 a megawatt-hour. 
Two things immediately jumped out at me after reading the story.

First. Is it just me or are others noting the same thing? It seems like I'm seeing more stories announcing nuclear power plants being taken off-line than stories of nuclear power plants coming on-line. It makes me wonder whether the nuclear energy "flat line" in the graphic above might be a bit optimistic.

Second. Read this paragraph again:
It cost OPPD about $71 a megawatt-hour last year to generate power at Fort Calhoun, double the national industry average of $35.50; the utility can purchase power on the open market for about $20 a megawatt-hour.
Forget about Fort Calhoun and OPPD. If the average nuclear power plant provides electricity at $35.50 a megawatt-hour, and one can buy electricity on the open market for $20 a megawatt-hour, something tells me there may be other nuclear power plants in similar precarious economic situations. 

Certainly when it comes time to pour $500 million into an existing plant to make it satisfy regulators to extend licensing, taxpayers are going to ask what the current non-nuclear existing open-market costs for electricity are.

June 17, 2016

From a featured blog, from the sidebar at the right, putting things into perspective:
Along with this graph, there are a couple of others at the link. 

Fond Memories -- A New Mission

This is really cool, where one might least expect, an article on military air power over at American Enterprise Institute (where Mark Perry contributes): the odd couple -- the Warthog and the Growler in the South China Sea. Besides being just a lot of fun to read, it is important because as we all know, the Warthog is on the chopping block and yet, it fills a very, very unique niche, I think, unmatched by any adversary.

The GOP Implodes

When one reads the political headlines about the current state of the GOP presidential campaign over at the Drudge Report one clearly sees that "it's every man for himself." Many GOP elite "want" to endorse the presumptive GOP presidential nominee but know that such an endorsement is suicide. Meanwhile many GOP elite are so churlish, they almost make Trump look saintly. It appears "we" (the US voters) finally have a viable third party candidate (whether one wants him or not) and that the GOP, at least at the national level) will not be fielding a candidate this year. That's probably the biggest reason why Larry David Bernie Sanders will drop out (or has already) -- there's no need for a third party nominee this year. We already have one.


For those interested in historical Christianity, this might be a book to consider, for yourself or someone else: Apostle: Travels Among the Tombs of the Twelve, Tom Bissell, c. 2016. The book has twelve chapters but one of the chapters is "Christos: On Jesus Christ." But all "twelve apostles" are discussed: two chapters each discuss two apostles -- "Philip & James Son of Alphaeus"; and, "Siimon the Cananaean & Thaddeus."

The author brings us up to date on current terminology, and is full of so much trivia, it will keep most folks enthralled for quite some time. 365 pages; very readable. Short glossary; nice bibliography. Index seems adequate.

The author visits / assigns one location to each apostle. The map is interesting:
  • Judas Iscariot: Jerusalem -- "a king of world-historical Salt Lake City."
  • Bartholomew: on the Tiber Island, Rome
  • Paul: various; hard to say where, but probably Jerusalem
  • Philip & James Son of Alphaeus: the Capitoline Hill, Rome
  • Peter: the Vatican, of course
  • Andrew: Saint Andrew's Church, Patras, Greece
  • John: the ruins of Saint John's Basilica, Seljuk, Turkey
  • Thomas: Saint Thomas Basilica, Chennai, India
  • Jesus Christ: various
  • Simon the Cananaean & Thaddaeus: Saint Sernin's Basilica, Toulouse, France
  • Matthew: Monastery of Armenian Brotherhood, Kurmanty, Kyrgyzstan
  • James Son of Zebedee: Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela, Santiago, Spain


The trout was baking in the oven. Three of the four burners were being used: upper left, where scallops and tilapia will be seared; upper right, artichoke, boiling for an hour; lower left, a bit of brown rice. On the counter, scallops in marinade, and tilapia; and, of course, broccoli with most meals.

I can't recall if I've posted this picture before. This was from a different meal (no trout in the picture below).

The Road To Minnesota -- June 17, 2016

Beautiful, beautiful day in north Texas --- but wow, it's hot. I rode my bike up to Starbucks for the first time in about a week -- I suppose it was about 8:30 a.m. when I left the apartment, and it felt like 105 degrees under a hot, somewhat humid, incredibly bright sun. But I see now that it was only 82 degrees, but will get to 97 degrees later this afternoon. I don't know what the high was yesterday, but it was similar I suppose. I took a longer bike ride yesterday, a long circuit around Grapevine with short segments in Colleyville and Southlake: 22.6 miles in the mid-afternoon. I don't think I will do that again, today, but I will be on the bike all day "running" errands.
So, what is being reported over at Google Finance and Yahoo!Finance? Some headlines:
  • Rhode Island lost 3,900 jobs over the past two months (1,900 in April; 2,000 more in May) -- a clear signal -- their words, not mine -- that the economy is slowing
  • housing starts little changed as US construction plateaus; I guess contractors can't find enough skilled workers
  • US housing starts fell 0.3% in May
  • the next BMW 3 series will be built in Mexico; currently built in Germany and South Africa, the South Africa plant will close and that production will move to Mexico; the Trump Wall will have an express lane to bring BMW's to Americans
  • Lumber Liquidators surges after government ends the formaldehyde probe in the company's flooring without issuing a recall; LumLiq is fortunate it did not have "oil" any where in its name
  • top story over at Yahoo!Finance has to do with Smith & Wesson; not surprising; SWHC is up 7.4% on a day when the market starts in negative territory
  • Beijing bans iPhone 6 in the city; says it's too similar to Chinese phone; Cook must be going nuts
  • both XOM and BHP Billiton are considering leaving Australia; dispose of a number of depleting oil and natural gas fields
So, pretty quiet.

I think one of the more interesting stories yesterday was the one Don sent me. I filed it under "no good deed goes unpunished." From my vantage point, Xcel  has gone above and beyond in its efforts to meet Minnesota's ill-thought-out renewable energy mandates. It's expensive. Two to four times more expensive than coal or natural gas. So, Xcel asks for a 9.8% rate increase.

Over three years.

That's about 3%/year. Sure, it's more than inflation forecast and GDP growth forecast, but considering the expense of wind and solar, it seems to make sense. About 10% over three years. Very manageable.

But Minnesota PUC said, "no, go back to the cubicles and come back with a 'better' number."

So, there you have it. Xcel goes above and beyond in efforts to bring mandated expensive wind and solar energy to Minnesotans and the PUC says a 9.8% rate increase over three years is excessive.

Meanwhile, ObamaCare health care premiums are expected to increase 25 - 50%.

Over one year.

OK, Over to Twitter

Yesterday there was a story -- I'm not going to bother looking for the link -- that (at least some) green energy advocates are looking to nuclear energy as an alternative to natural gas and oil. They've got their work cut out for them. I think this graph as been around for awhile, but it popped up on Twitter again today:

Obviously, no one seriously thinks there will be any significant nuclear power added to the American grid in any reasonable period of time. Has anyone ever seen a flatter line than the "nuclear" line above? But the fact that this has been raised suggests the following comments:
  • these same green energy advocates sit at the table when Hillary presides; those in pre-school now might want to start thinking about a career in nuclear energy (see photo below, "Table Talk")
  • the fact that some green energy advocates are EVEN thinking about nuclear energy tells me that they see the writing on the wall with regard to wind and solar (take a look at recent op-ed in The Huffington Post about the dirty little secrets of wind energy -- posted a few days ago)
  • in the big scheme of things, this has nothing to do with reality; these green energy advocates are looking for a new funding stream as funding for wind/solar starts to dry up
  • regardless of what happens, it isn't going to happen for a long time
 Table Talk
Quick Look At Price Of Oil Over The Years
One last Twitter graph and then we'll close out this post:

There's a very obvious takeaway in that graph.

How Times Have Changed

It doesn't seem all that long ago when President Obama called ISIS a "JV" team (and he didn't mean a "joint venture" but that wouldn't have been all that wrong either).

Yesterday, according to USA Today:
President Obama said Monday he and military leaders had not discussed sending additional troops to Iraq to fight the Islamic State. There are about 3,500 troops in Iraq.
"This will not be quick — this is a long-term campaign," Obama said at the Pentagon after meeting top military brass in the wake of setbacks that have prompted critics to call for a more robust U.S. response against the Islamic State.
"This will not be quick -- this is a long-term campaign. I'll hand it off to Hillary."

Evaluating Economics For A New Natural Gas Pipeline -- RBN Energy -- June 17, 2016

Active rigs:

Active Rigs2878187184214

RBN Energy: evaluating economics of a new natural gas pipeline, part 3. From before:
First you look at all the factors that could affect supply, demand and price on either end of the pipe and say you determine that the market would support moving 1.0 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) of total supply on this hypothetical route.
With that in mind, we walked you through the first step in our model—estimating the size of the pipe required to flow 1.0 Bcf/d of gas. That calculation involved some assumptions for industry norms around operating pressure (1,440 psi) and velocity of flow (20 mph).
And using those factors, we concluded that you would need a 30-inch pipe to move that 1.0 Bcf/d across the 500 miles.
Part 3:
Now that you know the size of the pipe, next you need to know how much it will cost to build a pipe that size, and then how that will translate into your transportation rate. That’s where we’ll pick back up today with Steps Two and Three of the Pipeline Economics Estimation Model, estimating the cost and estimating the rates you might pay.