Sunday, December 18, 2016

Hess Reports Two High-Stage, Moderate-Volume Fracks -- December 18, 2016

Monday, December 19, 2016
  • None.
Sunday, December 18, 2016
  • 29561, SI/NC, Statoil, Heinz 18-19 2H, Patent Gate, no production data,
  • 31280, 1,612, Hess, EN-VP and R-154-94-2536H-5, Alkali Creek, Three Forks, 53 stages, 3.7 million lbs, t10/16; cum 14K after 8 days;
Saturday, December 17, 2016
  • 31281, 746, Hess, EN-VP and R-154-94-2536H-6, Alkali Creek, middle Bakken, 57 stages, 4 million lbs, t11/16; cum 3K after 3 days;
  • 32140, SI/NC, EOG, Ross 43-0915H, Alger, no production data,
  • 32710, SI/NC, Statoil, Patent Gate 7-6 XW 1H, Camp, no production data,

31281, see above, Hess, EN-VP and R-154-94-2536H-6, Alkali Creek:

PoolDateDaysBBLS OilRunsBBLS WaterMCF ProdMCF SoldVent/Flare

31280, see above, Hess, EN-VP and R-154-94-2536H-5, Alkali Creek:

PoolDateDaysBBLS OilRunsBBLS WaterMCF ProdMCF SoldVent/Flare

Alva J. Field Trust Crosses $5 Million Milestone -- December 18, 2016

This is pretty cool. Both my brother and I received financial assistance from the Alva J Field Memorial Trust Scholarship Program. The Williston Herald is reporting:
The trust has been giving scholarships out since 2009, according to F. Dan Baker, who administers the trust. Any Williams County student with a grade point average of 3.0 or better is eligible for a scholarship, and it can be applied no matter where the student goes to college.
Baker just finished sending out notifications to students who earned the scholarships for the spring 2017 semester, and the trust gave away about $600,000. Before that, it had given out a total of about $4.6 million, bringing the grand total to more than $5 million.
The trust gets its name from Alva Field, who came to Williston in the early 20th century. He died in 1933, and his wife, Maude Field, established the trust in his honor before her death in 1959.
The trust didn’t get any money, Baker said. Instead, Maude Field left about 2,000 acres of land, with the income from that funding loans for Williams County students who wanted to attend college.
Then this:
For 50 years, the program just gave out loans, but over the years, some land was sold and oil wells were put on other parcels.
As more money came it, the three people who administer the trust wanted to do more for students. In addition to Baker, who is the managing director, Michael Campbell, superintendent of Williston Public School District No. 1, and Martin Hanson, the Williams County Commissioner who serves as Williams County Welfare Official, sit on the trust’s board. 
That explains it. The program is called a "scholarship" program, but I know that both my brother and I had loans, so I was confused when I first saw the headline.

Great story. Everything now makes sense.

The great Williston superintendent Mr Leon Olson was the individual who interviewed me for the loa and with whom I subsequently corresponded when paying back the loan. 

The fact that the program changed from a "loan" program to a "scholarship" program tells me that a) the program was very well managed; and, b) Williams County students pay back their loans.

Worker Shortage Looming In The Bakken -- December 18, 2016


December 30, 2016: update or repeat
Original Post
From The Williston Herald:
The labor crunch in North Dakota continues, and looks to get more intense by mid-2017. Cindy Sanford, office manager for the Job Service North Dakota office in Williston, is on the front lines of oil and gas job recruitment in the area.
“Oilfield jobs are definitely on the rise,” she said. “We had Oil States here on Monday and Schlumberger for the first time here on Thursday.”
She’s seeing the largest upward tick for jobs in hydraulic fracturing crews, which average between 45 and 65 people per crew. Class A CDL driving jobs were already high, and continue to be so.
“We are seeing sign-on bonuses for Class A CDL drivers and some per diem coming back on housing,” she said.
Wood Pellets In The 21st Century

Some entrepreneurs in the US are talking about a manned moon mission to Mars.

Meanwhile, the EU is burning wood pellets for energy.

It was mentioned on the blog back on October 22, 2015. Burning wood in the EU is considered "carbon neutral." LOL.

It must be a slow news day over at FuelFix this week: wood pellets fuel booming energy-related industry in southern US.
Parts of the South might be known for oil and gas production, but the region also is a mass producer of another lesser-known energy source: wood pellets, a biomass fuel.
In 2016, the South was the nation’s biggest producer of wood pellets, made of scraps from sawmills, logging operations and other wood product manufacturing. The U.S. is the world’s largest exporter of wood pellets, most of which are used for utility-scale electricity generation. Nearly all of the country’s wood pellets are destined for Europe, which accounts for 85 percent of the world’s wood pellet use.
Wood pellets are used for heating homes, but are mainly used by utilities in the United Kingdom, Belgium and the Netherlands.
Most of the wood pellets made in the U.S. head to the Drax Power Plant in northern England.
As we said about England when we were stationed there years ago: UK still living in the 1950's and working halftime to catch up. 

I Feel Fine -- Or Sha Na Na -- Inshallah -- December 18, 2016


December 22, 2016: Libya's Sharara oilfield resuming operations after pipelines reopen
Original Post
A couple of quick notes.

First, it looks like Libya has its own DAPL problem. Link here. Two data points. The first:
Libya is the largest key variable on the supply side in the short term, so the fact there is an element of doubt on field restarts is one thing supporting the market,” said Ric Spooner, a chief market analyst at CMC Markets in Sydney. “The downside for oil is fairly limited at the moment after the OPEC agreement to cut production.”
Second data point:
Libyan oil-facility guards have backtracked on an agreement to allow supply to flow from the El Feel and Sharara fields, two of the country’s biggest, according to an engineer that operates El Feel.  
If that's hard to understand, I'm sure we can find an analyst to explain that to us.

El Feel. I feel fine.

I Feel Fine, The Beatles

Or Sharara, speaking of oil:

Blue Moon, Sha Na Na
Trump Gets Involved

No links because I'm sure they are all fake stories anyway.

We all agree this is not a fake story: China stole one of our US Navy submersible drones. Right out from under nour nose.

The day after that happened, President Obama spoke at length about Russian hacking. No mention of the Chinese drone incident. Or if he did mention it, I missed it. Maybe it happened when that White House pool reporter became ill. Whatever.

But the Chinese said they will return the submersible drone.

Now we are hearing that Chinese agreed to return the drone when Trump got involved. Obama? He was starting his vacation in Hawaii.

Trump is doing more for the US before he is sworn into office than Obama did in eight years. Not everyone agrees.

More On Sharara

Libya's "elephant." Link here.
The El Feel, or Elephant, and Sharara fields still aren’t operational after they were shut more than a year and a half ago, an NOC official said Sunday by phone, asking not to be identified for lack of authorization to speak to news media. 
A group of guards backtracked on their agreement to let oil flow by pipeline from both fields, Khaled Hadloul, an engineer at Mellitah Oil & Gas, which operates Elephant. 
The inability of either field to reopen is a setback for the state-run NOC, which reached an agreement with protesters who had been blocking pipelines that connect the deposits with the Zawiya refinery and Mellitah complex, a person with direct knowledge of the matter said last week, asking not to be identified because the issue wasn’t public. The deal spurred hopes for an increase in production from the North African country, following years of turmoil and conflict among militia groups for control of its energy facilities. 
It's always a setback. Inshallah. .

Analysis Of Recent Chesapeake Divestiture -- Zeits -- December 18, 2016


December 20, 2016: second Haynesville sale in last week or so by Chesapeake Data points:
  • 41,500 nets acres; 326 operated and non-operated sites
  • buyer: Dallas-based Covey Park Energy, LLC
  • $465 million 
  • $11,000 / acre
  • Chesapeake says it has now exceeded its 2016 asset sales goal by $500 million, bringing total gross proceeds from divestitures signed or closed this year: $2.5 billion
Original Post 

I thought I had posted a short note on this. If I did, I can't find it -- whatever. I know I debated whether to post it. This is not an investment site and natural gas, Chesapeake, and divestiture analysis was getting a bit far afield of the purpose of the best non-commercial (no ads/no subscription) blog on the Bakken. I don't even have the Haynesville linked at the sidebar at the right. Whatever.

But my editor said, "go ahead and post it. What have you go to lose? It's not like you have any subscription base to worry about. Speaking of which, why aren't you posting ads? You could at least post a small 'gofundme' link. Think about it. Do it for Sophia."

Not tonight.

Here's the link to Richard Zeits' analysis: Key points:
  • Zeits thought the deal was good for Chesapeake
  • Chesapeake received an estimated $10,000+ per undeveloped core acre in Haynesville
  • acreage is 100% HBP; 25% developed
  • greater than 200% improvement in year-over-year gas production
  • 78,000 net acres; 40,000 net acres considered "core"
  • the map suggests that Chesapeake sold its less valuable acreage
Much more at the link.

Zsa Zsa Is Dead At 99 

I assume the Kardashian of her age. I don't know much about Zsa Zsa. But I seldom missed an episode of Green Acres in which her sister starred. In another life, I suppose, Donald Trump would have played the part of Mr Douglas, played by Eddie Albert. Ted Cruz had a cameo. 

With Guest Star, Ted Cruz

Dallas Football Starts In Minutes -- December 18, 2016

So, what are the futures doing? Monday, December 19, 2016 -- there's something about that date that seems important. Trying to think. Oh, that's it. The Electoral College votes.

I assume electors in their various states have a little social gathering in the morning, maybe free breakfast at the hotel at which they are staying, followed by a call to order, and then instructions on how voting will occur. I would assume they could have that done by noon, local time, leaving the afternoon free for the particular secretary of state to put together the six packets, one of which will be sent to the US Senate in Washington, DC, by post chaise. Or pony express. No doubt the President of the Senate Joe Biden is waiting with bayed breath.

North Dakota will have three electoral votes. I assume Jill Stein will request a recount in North Dakota. Count on it. Three votes. 

But I digress. What are futures doing? Dow (mini) are up 31 points, to 19825. WTI is up 38 cents to $52.28.

En Passant

Earlier today, someone reported that Saudi Arabia wanted to cap the price of oil at $60. Sure. Another fake story. $60 won't do a thing for Saudi. They need $90 this year, $80 next year. Conservative estimates. They may need more if President Trump has no lovin' feeling for KSA. 


It's early, but ... not a blow-out. In fact, the Dallas Cowboys came close to losing this one until America's Team finally decided to show up. With 96 seconds left to play, this game is not over. Dallas leads by 6 points; Tampa Bay has the ball. 96 seconds left to play; 89 yards to go. A completion; a pass interference; a missed coverage -- Dallas could still lose it. 59 seconds; recovered fumble; clock running down. 43 seconds. Incomplete pass. Clock stops at 35 seconds. 4th and 12. All over. Interception. Dallas wraps it up. Wow, great game for the crowd. Big smiles all around. At 12-2 they still haven't the division. Wow.

Huge, Huge Cattle Auction In Southwestern North Dakota; North Dakota State Budget Hits School Funding -- December 18, 2016

State cuts in public school funding coming to North Dakota. From The Williston Herald, data points:
  • oil revenue down
  • new budget released by the governor: $13.7 billion; $2 billion less than proposed budget two years ago
  • foundation aid makes up 60% of the Williston district's budget; that will be frozen during first year of the biennium
  • possibly a 1% rise the following year of the biennium: $9,646/child; up from $9,742/child
    2007 - 2008: 2,100 students
  • currently: 3,735 students, a 56% increase, but Rapid Growth funding will be nonexistent in the new budget
North Dakota budget: probably easiest to read is at Ballotpedia.
  • Between fiscal years 2014 and 2015, total government spending in North Dakota increased by approximately $1.2 billion—from $6.6 billion in fiscal year 2014 to an estimated $7.7 billion in 2015. This represents a 15.1% increase

A biennium budget always confuses me but I suppose Ballotpedia's 2015 $7.7 billion is one-half the biennium budget. If so, that equates to $15.4 billion vs $13.7 billion this biennium.

Bowman Auction Market


 First we had:
  • the Chisholm Trail
  • the Santa Fe Trail
  • the Oregon Trail
Now, we have the Bowman Trail:

Original Post
I'm hoping the national press picks up this story. I've sent a note to a reporter over at The Wall Street Journal. I don't follow the cattle "industry" in North Dakota but a reader tells me this is huge. He says that this is the largest livestock auction in Bowman in history, or at least in his history. The announcement is at the Bowman Auction Market. He says there are 4,250 head of cattle to be auctioned. I did not count, but it looks about right.

According to the reader, 4,250 head of cattle works out to fifty-five (55) semi-trucks / cattle trucks. If I see a convoy of a dozen or even two dozen cattle trucks on the road, it would catch my attention. I assume all trucks won't all be full -- different destinations, etc. -- so we could easily see five to six dozen of trucks leaving Bowman on January 9, 2017.

It's almost worth a special trip to North Dakota just to see this.  Maybe Vern Whitten will be flying that day: if so, take an aerial photo of the auction site on January 9, 2017.

In case I forget: can someone send me a note if any newspaper reports the results of this auction?

I was going to post a trucking song but wanted to go with something a bit different:

Cattle Call, Eddy Arnold

Update On The Tesoro Pipeline Spill In North Dakota In 2013 -- December 18, 2016

The Associated Press updates the "massive oil spill" that occurred in North Dakota back in 2013. It was picked up by Google!Finance.

This made the top-story-list at the blog back in 2013. From the blog October 11, 2013:
Previously reported, but this is the top story in the second section: North Dakota pipeline spills 20,000 barrels. A Tesoro Logistics crude pipeline spilled about 20,000 barrels of oil in a rural field in northwest North Dakota, in what appears to be the largest spill in the Bakken shale formation to date.  It appears The Dickinson Press missed scoop on the top North Dakota story of 2013. I think it was reported first in The Bismarck Tribune but could be wrong. [Update, October 31, 2013: it appears the pipe spill was due to a lightning strike.]
Much could be said but perhaps for another day.

List of pipeline spills in the US, by year.

Crude oil pipeline spills, annual amount:

North Dakota produces around one million bbls of crude oil per day. Most of the crude oil North Dakota produces is transported out of state, either by rail or by pipeline. 

The History Page
Ivory Vikings: 
The Mystery of the Most Famous Chessmen in the World and the Woman Who Made Them 
Nancy Marie Brown
c. 2015 
The other day I said I wasn't going to post any more notes on this book on the blog. I would continue the notes elsewhere.
But after writing about the bishops (originally elephants), I thought it would be interesting to continue the story with .... the rooks. But much more briefly.

Arabic rukh: chariot. 

Chess originated in India; through Persia, then continental Europe, and finally to England and Iceland.

When passing through Persia, chess men became chess pieces because Islam prohibited/prohibits the carving of idols. 

The Lewis chess men: nine are carved of Greenland walrus; the other three of whale's tooth (not as good as walrus tusk).

The Lewis chess rooks are warriors; more specifically "berserks." They are neither chariots (Indian) nor towers (modern).

Berserks are "late" Norse inventions.

Berserks: etymology -- "bear-shirts." Some wore wolf skins.

Harald's Lay is the earliest known mention of berserks.

Baghdad, during the Islamic expansion in the 5th to the 8th century knew of the raiders from the north. Traders from the north were call "Rus" by medieval writers; we would call them Vikings. The Vikings made it all the way to Baghdad to trade; they passed themselves off as Christians in order to pay lower taxes.

Offshore Wind Project Comes On-Line, 60% More Than EIA Estimate; 10X Cost Of New NG Plant; Definition Of Insanity: NYC To Repeat Science Project; Obama Legacy -- December 18, 2016


Later, 3:15 p.m. Central Time: from another reader, quoting other source(s). There were a couple of "justifications" for this boondoggle:
  • bragging rights -- very, very expensive bragging rights
  • huge payoff for owners down the road -- maybe soon with tax credits, investors
  • Obama's legacy
Form the Block Island Times, bragging rights:
... an undersea electric transmission cable linking Block Island to the mainland is now a reality. On Thursday, June 23, National Grid landed its 30-megawatt sea-to-shore cable at the Fred Benson Town Beach to make the connection. National Grid then spliced its $107 million sea-to-shore cable with the terrestrial cable on Tuesday, June 28 at 5 p.m.
The reader's comments with slight editing:
The $290 million 30 MW wind farm has a $107 million "interconnect" cable tied into the "national" grid.
None of this was done to provide power to the "national" grid.
The cable is for the 75% of the time, more or less, that the wind speed is "incorrect."
Justification for this boondoggle was as a pilot project for a $multi-billion follow-up wind farm and to "displace the diesel generators" in current use supplying the 5-megawatt load.
A $107 million cable/substation to connect to a 25 megawatt peak capacity, intermittent and non-dispatchable source?
No one can be that stupid to do this again ... hopefully America's first and last offshore wind farm boondoggle.
Later, 12:25 p.m. Central Time: my mistake. The Block Island off-shore wind farm provides electricity to the state's electric grid; it was not built to supply electricity specifically to the island. For now, I will leave up the original post but later will correct it. From a reader regarding Deepwater Wind (DW Wind):
  • power goes to mainland, to local utility
  • power to Block Island originates from mainland-base utility and transmitted via new cable (NOT included in cost projections for DW Wind)
  • built in, incremental rate increae for DW Wind owners that, decades on, guarantees about 50 cents/KWh fee ... five times PA residential rate
  • current, long time Block Island power sourced by aged diesel generators. They wanted long term, reliable electric. Costs of DW project disbursed throughout state
Later, 10:57 a.m. Central Time: My fingers were frozen, and I accidentally clicked on "delete" rather than "publish" and once deleted, unable to recover. Sorry about that. A reader noted, see comments:
Block Island is no getaway for the elite; it's a place to get drunk on a summer weekend.  
That explains the decision for the wind towers, I guess.

Original Post
A big "thank you" to a reader spotting this one. From IER, December 16, 2016, a most expensive offshore wind farm becomes operational. Data points (these are my original data points; some are in error, see updates above):
  • off the coast of Rhode Island
  • Block Island Wind Farm
  • 30 MW facility -- repeat, a 30MW facility
  • five large offshore turbines; GE Renewable Energy; operated by Deepwater Wind
  • to supply energy to 1,000 full-time residents of Block Island
  • years and year of state / federal / town hall meetings / yada, yada, yada
  • $300 million 
  • $10,000/kw
  • 10 times more than the cost of a new natural gas combined cycle unit
  • 58% more costly than what the EIA expects a first-of-a-kind offshore wind unit to cost
The definition of insanity:
  • Long Island, NY, to do the same thing
  • $300 million / 1,000 residents =  $300,000 / resident.
  • What was the source of their electricity prior to the wind towers?
  • Do the wind towers supply all electricity? Of course not. Back-up is still needed for when the wind is not blowing or blowing too fast. 
  • Does anybody even think about these things?
    There was already some source for electricity for theses 1,000 residents, so wind was not a last-ditch option.
Based on the wiki entry, Block Island looks like a getaway for the elites and thus explains the largess and boondoggle:
The Nature Conservancy added Block Island to its list of "The Last Great Places"; the list consists of twelve sites in the Western Hemisphere. About 40 percent of the island is set aside for conservation.
Presidents Bill Clinton, Dwight D. Eisenhower, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, and Ulysses S. Grant have visited Block Island.
Other famous visitors include Amelia Earhart and Charles Lindbergh, who each made separate trips to the island in 1929.
Block Island is coextensive with the town of New Shoreham. The island is a popular summer tourist destination and is known for its bicycling, hiking, sailing, fishing, and beaches.
The island hosts two historic lighthouses: Block Island North Light, on the northern tip of the island, and Block Island Southeast Light, on the southeastern side. Much of the northwestern tip of the island is an undeveloped natural area and resting stop for birds along the Atlantic Flyway.
Every summer the island hosts Block Island Race Week, a competitive, week-long sailboat race. On odd years, the event is held by the Storm Trysail Club, and on even years by the Block Island Race Week. Yachts compete in various classes, sailing courses in Block Island Sound and circumnavigating the island.
No wonder Michelle (Obama) has lost all hope for the US. 

Bismarck Public Schools Face Growing Pains --- December 18, 2016

Link here. Data points:
  • the three Bismarck middle schools are spilling over with students
  • by 2021 - 2022: Bismarck public schools will gain almost 2,000 students; 740 at the middle schools alone
  • each middle school has reached or will soon reach capacity
  • middle school-aged students: 10 - 13 years of age
  • this is 2016: what happened 10 - 13 years ago in North Dakota
  • 2003 to 2006: that's interesting: that's before the Bakken boom
From an NDSU study, "Trends in the North Dakota Economy, dated, May, 2006:

As North Dakota has shifted from its traditional dependence on natural resource-based activities to a more diversified economy, changes in employment, population, income, and retail sales have occurred.
This report summarizes changes in these and other economic indicators at the county and community level from 1980 to 2004.
Employment increased 12 percent from 1990 to 2004, with 19 of the state’s 53 counties registering job growth.
The largest percentage (and absolute) gains were in Cass (Fargo) and Burleigh (Bismarck) counties. Population statewide decreased by less than 1 percent from 1990 to 2004, as substantial growth in the Fargo and Bismarck-Mandan metropolitan areas was offset by population decreases in most of the state’s rural counties.
Per capita income (adjusted for inflation) increased 32 percent statewide from 1990 to 2004. The 2004 value ($29,247) was about 89 percent of U.S. per capita income, compared to 79 percent in 1990.
Retail sales also increased substantially from 1990 to 2004, and the state’s four wholesale-retail trade centers accounted for a growing share of sales. Pull factors, which measure a community’s retail sales compared to residents’ purchasing power, were stable or increasing for the wholesale-retail centers and declining for smaller trade centers, on average.
From USA Today five years ago "North Dakota economy booms, population soars, March 17, 2011, which was based on data as of 2010. The Bakken was booming but it was in the early stages, and had  not yet reached its stride. 

The two takeaways for me:
  • the North Dakota economy is more diverse than folks might think
  • population boom in Bismarck prior to Bakken (and maybe during the Bakken) may have been significantly impacted by rural folks moving to the city; in the 2006 study only two regions showed an increase in population (Fargo and Bismarck); all other regions in North Dakota declined in population

Recent Post And Updates Of Madison Activity In The Williston Basin -- December 18, 2016

Recent posts and updates of Madison activity in the Williston Basin: