Thursday, February 11, 2021

Waha: $12 Tonight -- February 11, 2021

Polar vortex. Pushing natural gas prices to record highs in the Great Plains (fly-over country).

Waha gas plant, in the Permian.

From social media tonight:


And this: 


 Record draw?


Link here:

California Utilities Approved To Buy More Power -- Re-Posting -- February 11, 2021

From SeekingAlpha:
  • The California Public Utilities Commission votes to authorize Pacific Gas & Electric, Southern California Edison and Sempra Energy's San Diego Gas & Electric to purchase extra power in the next three months and to pass on the costs to customers in order to avoid a repeat of last summer's rolling blackouts.
  • Last August, more than 800K people were left without power during a heat wave after the California Independent System Operator ordered the state's first widespread rolling blackouts in nearly 20 years.
  • The CPUC also votes to require utilities to provide 72 hours of backup power to landline phone and internet service during power outages.
  • One in every five 911 calls is made using a landline telephone, and landlines are often concentrated in hard-to-reach rural areas.
  • Utilities also must ensure that hospitals, fire and police departments and facilities that provide service to wireless networks in wildfire-prone areas have access to backup power by October.
  • California's largest utilities said last week that they planned to spend ~ $13 billion to reduce the risk of wildfires.  

First question: from where will the utilities find this "extra power" to purchase? 

Second question: how expensive will this "extra power" be? Coal, natural gas, nuclear, wind, solar?

Here's the answer, from the article, but one might have to connect a few dots:

Others who spoke during public comment session said they worried the rush to get more power capacity by the summer could lead the state to pay utilities to buy more fossil fuel energy when California is trying to move toward more clean energy sources.

"We really don’t envision long-term gas contracts resulting from this authorization, except perhaps in very narrow, unexpected circumstances," said Commissioner Clifford Rechtschaffen, addressing those concerns.

This whole story is so incredibly interesting on so many levels. 

Audi Introduces The EV To Compete With The Tesla Model S -- February 11, 2021

Link to Charles Kennedy.

  • Audi e-tron GT
    • starting price: $100,000
    • in the US, the e-tron GT quattro Premium Plus: $99,900
    • e-tron GT quattro Prestige: $107,000
    • RS e-tron Gt: $139,000
  • mileage: are you kidding? Does it matter? Do folks that can afford $139K auto really care about mileage; LOL; it's all about performance; bragging rights
  • but for the record:
    • full charge: 238 miles for the e-tron GT
    • 232 miles for the RS e-tron GT
  • Audi's goal: full net CO2 neutrality across the lifecycle of its vehicles by 2050
  • GM: carbon-neutral business by 2040

*****************************************
California Utilities Approved To Buy More Power

From SeekingAlpha:

  • The California Public Utilities Commission votes to authorize Pacific Gas & Electric, Southern California Edison and Sempra Energy's San Diego Gas & Electric to purchase extra power in the next three months and to pass on the costs to customers in order to avoid a repeat of last summer's rolling blackouts.
  • Last August, more than 800K people were left without power during a heat wave after the California Independent System Operator ordered the state's first widespread rolling blackouts in nearly 20 years.
  • The CPUC also votes to require utilities to provide 72 hours of backup power to landline phone and internet service during power outages.
  • One in every five 911 calls is made using a landline telephone, and landlines are often concentrated in hard-to-reach rural areas.
  • Utilities also must ensure that hospitals, fire and police departments and facilities that provide service to wireless networks in wildfire-prone areas have access to backup power by October.
  • California's largest utilities said last week that they planned to spend ~ $13 billion to reduce the risk of wildfires.  

First question: from where will the utilities find this "extra power" to purchase? 

Second question: how expensive will this "extra power" be? Coal, natural gas, nuclear, wind, solar?

Here's the answer, from the article, but one might have to connect a few dots:

Others who spoke during public comment session said they worried the rush to get more power capacity by the summer could lead the state to pay utilities to buy more fossil fuel energy when California is trying to move toward more clean energy sources.

"We really don’t envision long-term gas contracts resulting from this authorization, except perhaps in very narrow, unexpected circumstances," said Commissioner Clifford Rechtschaffen, addressing those concerns.

This whole story is so incredibly interesting on so many levels. 

**********************************
The Art Page

This is for the archives, for the grandchildren.

Sophia is in first grade. In addition to her RRR's, she has specials in physical education, art, and music. 

In art, Sophia has learned about four artists so far, and has submitted art assignments based on art by those artists. 

The four artists:

  • Piet Mondrian
  • Wayne Thiebaud
  • Heather Galler
  • Ted Harrison

Today, I sent a note and a photograph of Sophia's initial sketch for her current assignment to her grandmother: colorful landscapes by Ted Harrison. 

My wife, of Japanese-Mexican heritage, a very good artist herself, replied:

Ted Harrison's art is reminiscent of Notan, a Japanese concept that breaks a drawing into dominant shapes with only three colors of white, gray and black to denote the dark, light, and mid-values of a painting. 
I do these as a preliminary after a thumbnail sketch so I can be sure I have my values taken into consideration, as in the photo [below] of a cloudy sky that I painted awhile back. Harrison's is a beautiful style of a Notan on steroids of color. 

From Mitchell Albala, contemporary landscape painter, instructor, and author: "The wisdom of Notan -- a brief introduction."

Here's another Notan example, and Ted-Harrison-like painting:

Most interesting, currently there is a television commercial that uses Ted Harrison's technique.

Total Pivots To Green Energy and LNG -- February 11, 2021

Total data points, link here:

  • will change name to TotalEnergies pending shareholder approval;
  • to reflect changing focus on renewable energy and LNG
  • LNG sales for Total:
    • 4Q20: fell 6% year/year to 10 million tons
    • full year, 2020: sales rose by 12% to 38.3 million tons
  • growth attributed to
    • startup of three production units in the Cameron LNG facility in the United States;
    • the ramp-up of Yamal LNG in Russia; and,
    • Ichthys LNG in Australia
  • Additionally, Total holds equity stakes in four flagship LNG projects in varying stages of development:
    • Arctic LNG 2, Russia
    • Nigeria LNG Train 7
    • Mozambique LNG
    • Energia Costa Azul, aka ECA, Mexico (lead: Sempra Energy)

***************************************
Retro - 1962

My valentine's gift from our younger daughter. I had seen this, wanted one, but never bought one for myself. Somehow Laura must have known -- maybe I told her. 

Lego sells it for $119 but it is "out of stock." Apparently "out of stock" does not mean "retired." On Amazon from thirty party sellers, $183

On our mantel.

Released October, 2011. Link here.

CLR's Thirty Dennis FIU / Flint Chips Federal /Flint Chips FIU

 The thirty CLR permits in NWNE 8-147-96 permits:

  • 38117, conf, CLR, Dennis FIU 13-8H1, Cedar Coulee, NWNE 8-147-96, 208 FNL 2054 FEL,
  • 38118, conf, CLR, Dennis FIU 14-8H, Cedar Coulee, NWNE 8-147-96, 241 FNL 2053 FEL,
  • 38119, conf, CLR, Flint Chips Federal 2-5HSL, Big Gulch, NWNE 8-147-96, 274 FNL 2053 FEL,
  • 38120, conf, CLR, Dennis FIU 14-2HSL, Big Gulch, NWNE 8-147-96, 307 FNL 2053 FEL,
  • 38121, conf, CLR, Flint Chips Federal 3-5HSL1, Big Gulch, NWNE 8-147-96, 340 FNL 2053 FEL,
  • 38122, conf, CLR, Dennis FIU 14--5HSL1, Big Gulch, NWNE 8-147-96, 373 FNL 2053 FEL,
  • 38123 conf, CLR, Flint Chips Federal 4-5H, Cedar Coulee, NWNE 8-147-96, 373 FNL 2053 FEL,
  • 38124, conf, CLR, Dennis FIU 4-8H, Cedar Coulee, NWNE 8-147-96, 439 FNL 2053 FEL,
  • 38125, conf, CLR, Flint Chips Federal 5-5H1, Cedar Coulee, NWNE 8-147-96, 472 FNL 2053 FEL,
  • 38126, conf, CLR, Dennis FIU 5-8H1, Cedar Coulee, NWNE 8-147-96, 505 FNL 2053 FEL,
  • 38127, conf, CLR, Flint Chips FIU 6-5H, Cedar Coulee, NWNE 8-147-96, 538 FNL 2052 FEL,
  • 28128, conf, CLR, Dennis FIU 6-8H, Cedar Coulee, NWNE 8-147-96, 571 FNL 2052 FEL,
  • 38129, conf, CLR, Dennis FIU 15-8HSL1, Cedar Coulee, NWNE 8-147-96, 208 FNL 1854 FEL;
  • 38130, conf, CLR, Dennis FIU 16-8HSL, Cedar Coulee, NWNE 8-147-96, 241 FNL 1853 FEL;
  • 38131, conf, CLR, Flint Chips FIU 7-5H1, Cedar Coulee, NWNE 8-147-96, 274 FNL 1853 FEL;
  • 38132, conf, CLR, Dennis FIU 7-8H1, Cedar Coulee, NWNE 8-147-96, 307 FNL 1853 FEL;
  • 38133, conf, CLR, Flint Chips FIU 8-5H, Cedar Coulee, NWNE 8-147-96, 340 FNL 1853 FEL;
  • 38134, conf, CLR, Dennis FIU 8-8H, Cedar Coulee, NWNE 8-147-96, 373 FNL 1853 FEL;
  • 38135, conf, CLR, Flint Chips Federal 9-5H1, Cedar Coulee, NWNE 8-147-96, 406 FNL 1853 FEL;
  • 38136, conf, CLR, Dennis 9-8H1, Cedar Coulee, NWNE 8-147-96, 439 FNL 1853 FEL;
  • 38137, conf, CLR, Flint Chips Federal 10-5H, Cedar Coulee, NWNE 8-147-96, 472 FNL 1853 FEL;
  • 38138, conf, CLR, Dennis FIU 10-8H, Cedar Coulee, NWNE 8-147-96, 505 FNL 1853 FEL;
  • 38139, conf, CLR, Dennis FIU 11-8H1, Cedar Coulee, NWNE 8-147-96, 538 FNL 1852 FEL;
  • 38140, conf, CLR, Dennis FIU 12-8H, Cedar Coulee, NWNE 8-147-96, 571 FNL 1852 FEL;
  • 38146, conf, CLR, Flint Chips FIU 11-5H1, NWNE 8-147-96, 1014 FNL, 1644 FEL, 
  • 38147, conf, CLR, Flint Chips FIU 12-5H, NWNE 8-147-96, 1048 FNL 1623 FEL,
  • 38148, conf, CLR, Flint Chips FIU 12-5H1, NWNE 8-147-96, 1082 FNL 1602 FEL,
  • 38149, conf, CLR, Flint Chips FIU 14-5H, NWNE 8-147-96, 1116FNL 1581 FEL,
  • 38150, conf, CLR, Flint Chips FIU 15-5HSL1, NWNE 8-147-96, 1151 FNL 1560 FEL,
  • 38151, conf, CLR, Flint Chips FIU 16-5HSL, NWNE 8-147-96, 1185FNL 1539 FEL,

There is one existing well in the1280-acre drilling unit in that area:

  • 16605, 418, CLR, Dennis 44-8H, Cedar Coulee, t7/07; cum 89K 12/20

Graphic updated, April 24, 2021:

The graphics, original post:


CLR With Another Six Flint Chips FIU Permits In Dunn County -- February 11, 2021

CLR with six new permits, #38146 - #38151, inclusive:

  • Operator: CLR
  • Field: Cedar Coulee (Dunn)
  • Comments:
    • CLR has permits for six more Flint Chips Federal wells in Cedar Coulee
    • add these to the 24 permits in the same section earlier this week;
      • 38146, conf, CLR, Flint Chips FIU 11-5H1, NWNE 8-147-96, 1014 FNL, 1644 FEL, 
      • 38147, conf, CLR, Flint Chips FIU 12-5H, NWNE 8-147-96, 1048 FNL 1623 FEL,
      • 38148, conf, CLR, Flint Chips FIU 12-5H1, NWNE 8-147-96, 1082 FNL 1602 FEL,
      • 38149, conf, CLR, Flint Chips FIU 14-5H, NWNE 8-147-96, 1116FNL 1581 FEL,
      • 38150, conf, CLR, Flint Chips FIU 15-5HSL1, NWNE 8-147-96, 1151 FNL 1560 FEL,
      • 38151, conf, CLR, Flint Chips FIU 16-5HSL, NWNE 8-147-96, 1185FNL 1539 FEL,

Active rigs:

$57.98
2/11/202102/11/202002/11/201902/11/201802/11/2017
Active Rigs1555635836

Eight new oil and gas permits:

  • Enerplus (7): the following permits, all in McKenzie County: Tegu, Lizard, Cayman, Gecko, Basilisk, Frilled, Anole;
  • Lime Rock Resources: a Harlan Rebsom permit in Dunn County;

One permit canceled:

  • CLR: an Irgens Rexall permit in Williams County;

DUCs: again, another day when no DUCs reported as completed.

Idle Rambling, Nothing About The Bakken -- February 11, 2021

This has nothing to do with investing. These are simply some of the "things" I'm most interested in right now:

  • Sports talk: "the commercial." Simply brilliant. It still dominates sports talk television.
  • Apple: is Apple re-considering "margins"? Moats? Does Tim Cook want to be a car company (moats non-existent) or a chip company (huge moats)?
  • Trucking: is Daimler Truck becoming the Apple in the trucking world? on the blog!
  • Shelby: starting her own trucking company?
  • Investing: time to go back to watching CNBC? This one's easy; nope ... with exceptions:
    • on mute during the day; occasionally tuning into mute screen during the noon hour
    • Melissa's "Fast Money" segment; occasionally; not on Fridays

Disclaimer: this is not an investment site.  Do not make any investment, financial, job, career, travel, or relationship decisions based on what you read here or think you may have read here.  

Markets today

  • NASDAQ closes at a record high.
  • Dow hit intraday high but then fell back to close at a slight loss. 

Disney reported after hours:

  • closed up 0.75% just ahead of earnings release:
  • after hours: up over 2%
    • beats estimates
    • subscribers soar to 95 million; well ahead of the 90 million forecast;
    • unexpected profit; a loss was expected!
    • earned 32 cents / share vs a loss of 38 cents expected;

*****************************
NYC Rentals

Apparently landlords are offering rent-free deals -- absolute panic in NYC -- CNBC -- crawler -- February 11, 2021. Panic, as in pandemic. Link here.  

There are so many vacant apartments in New York City now that some landlords are offering three months free rent—a more generous concession than the usual one- or two-months of free rent that you can usually find—and a sign of how badly owners are struggling to fill vacant apartments during the pandemic.

************************
Texas

When we first moved to the Dallas-Ft Worth (DFW) area eight years ago, it was my observation that 80% -- if not 90% -- of federal dollars for interstate construction / maintenance was being spent in Texas. I probably was not too far off based on this next statistic.

It's being reported that Texas has four of the top five cities for new apartment construction: Dallas, Austin, Houston, and San Antonio

The big question, which is the fifth? My guesses:

  • tri-city area, North Carolina
  • DC - northern Virginia
  • Tampa - Miama, FL
  • Phoenix, AZ

Market Today; Offshore Wind -- February 11, 2021

Market today:

Disclaimer: this is not an investment site.  Do not make any investment, financial, job, career, travel, or relationship decisions based on what you read here or think you may have read here. 

*********************************
Wind

Later, from a reader with extensive experience in the marine construction field (seven years as a commercial diver), who has followed offshore wind with keen interest and a fair degree of familiarity, had this to say:

From start to finish, [offshore wind] is an unmitigated disaster ... even way more so for Americans with their uber-abundance of hydrocarbons.

The final two paragraphs from your linked article precisely describes what is involved here. 
By pandering to the public's fears and ignorance, faux environmentalists - backed by malevolent foreign entities - are on a clear path to destroy - or at least greatly hobble - the American and European economies.
The last two paragraphs of that article on offshore wind energy:

This planning failure is more than a question of painful domestic economics and inadequate climate policy. The broader hazards of driving the U.S. towards renewable energy are brought into sharp focus by increasingly intense competition from a China whose president has admitted that its emissions from low entropy, but high emitting, fossil fuels will continue to rise until 2030 and remain substantial for some considerable time thereafter, with the country only aspiring to become carbon neutral in 2060.

If China fulfills that aspiration, it will be on its own terms and no other: There is every reason to think that Beijing is making an end run around renewables, dressing the window with what are, for that gargantuan national system, mere traces of wind and solar, while in reality concentrating on the accumulation of great wealth from fossil fuels, now rendered cheap by coerced exclusion from the Western markets. With that wealth in hand, China will deploy advanced nuclear to generate both electricity and hydrogen on the largest possible scale so as to honor its longer-term climate change promises while simultaneously securing its economic, military, and geopolitical preeminence. A nuclear China would be richer, stronger, and cleaner than any of its competitors.  The engineer bureaucrats of Beijing know nature far too well to think that she can be fooled. The lawyers and ideologues in the White House take a different view, for now.

Original Post

US offshore wind prospects: overblown promises and blown-up costs

My observations:

  • renewable energy will never be more than a niche energy source;
    • corollary: China knows this
  • solar energy is an even smaller energy niche than wind
  • new sites for US onshore wind are decreasing; most of the "good" sites have been "taken"
    • state governments and surface owners pushing back on new wind farms
  • offshore wind: if it was as good as folks say it is, we would see a lot more projects; 
    • offshore must go farther and farther out; more and more expensive

A reader sent me this article in National Review, February 11, 2021

The lede:

In energy policy, it is physics that matters above all else. Executive Orders from the Oval Office, Directives of the European Union, or Acts of Parliament driven through with fanfare by Her Majesty’s Government in London may give the plausible appearance that wishes are horses and beggars may ride, and in comfort too, but it is no more than appearance. As Richard Feynman, the great laughing natural-philosopher of our age, observed with savage economy after the Challenger disaster: “For a successful technology, reality must take precedence over public relations, for nature cannot be fooled.”

The question:

But what is the reality of renewable energy? In one of his first actions as president, Mr. Biden has expressed the wish to “double” offshore wind in the U.S. by 2030, an ambiguous phrase that probably means he and his advisers wish to see twice the current development portfolio of offshore wind capacity to be operational within a decade, or 18,000 MW rather than the present 9,000 MW in an advanced stage of preparation.

The attraction is easily explained. The U.S. already has a great deal of onshore wind power, 112,000 MW, subsidized through Production Tax Credits and mostly located on and around a line running from North Dakota to Texas, a broad belt characterized by strong winds, cheapish land, and low construction costs. Unfortunately, it is also distant from the main corridors of demand on the East and West coasts. Offshore wind along the coasts therefore seems like a tempting option for expansion, but is it wise?

Obfuscation and reality:

The U.S. has almost no experience with offshore wind, with only two small projects completed, totaling 42 MW, about 0.2 percent of Mr Biden’s apparent aspirational 2030 target for this technology.

However, this need not be a leap in the dark. In pursuit of relevant data, the U.S. can look to Europe, and particularly to the United Kingdom, which already has 10,000 MW of wind deployed in the British seas, some dating back to the early 2000s. Nearly everything the U.S. might wish to know is there. Extracting that information, however, will not be straightforward since the British government and the wind industry are colluding in an obfuscation of the truth. Both sides claim that costs are falling, the government because it is reluctant to admit failure after many tens of billions of dollars of subsidy, the industry because its participants hope to survive long enough to be rescued out by a future government so desperate that it provides new (and probably covert) subsidies.

As a matter of recorded fact, costs have increased by about 15 percent for every doubling in total wind capacity in North Western Europe, mostly because of the necessity of using sites that are more distant from shore and in deeper water, requirements from which the U.S. would not be immune. Professor Hughes finds that these trends greatly outweigh any reductions in cost due to the use of larger turbines.

Of particular interest to the United States is the outlier in the figure, which represents a floating wind-turbine project, Hywind, the costs of which are double the average for fixed turbines in deep water. The majority of the available U.S. offshore wind resource flows over waters more than 60 meters deep, ruling out seabed foundations.

This article is a keeper. Archived.

Notes From All Over -- Semiconductor Update: February 11, 2021

Apple: Intel, Qualcomm, Micron, and AMD ask for government incentives; Apple supplier TSMC expands to meet unprecedented demand. Huge story. Expands? Operative word: "considerable." As in "undertaking a considerable expansion as chip demand outstrips supply."

Apple: led semiconductor buying last year (2020) -- previously posted --

  • Apple remained the top semiconductor chip buyer in 2020 with 12% of the overall market
  • Samsung was second with an 8% market share
  • Huawei spent 23% less on the year compared to the over 20% gains for Apple ans Samsung due to the increased U.S. trade restrictions. The company still came in third with a 4% share
  • Lenovo and Dell rounded out the top five with a 4% and 3.7% share, respectively.

Apple: car talk? Did Tim Cook just re-run the numbers? Better to become a semiconductor company or a car company. 

Intel, in particular, has suffered from a myriad of problems. With major client Apple dropping Intel for its own custom silicon, and Microsoft expected to follow suit in the near future, Intel has struggled to deliver technological innovations. This is after the company has repeatedly reported delays with its latest processors, while its main competitor, AMD, has proceeded to capture valuable market share. After a major investor pushed Intel to shake up its entire business model, the company is hoping that new CEO Pat Gelsinger will help it to find its way.

Apple/Amazon: on-line retailer drops the Green 64GB wi-fi iPad to $539.99, down from $599. This beats the previous all-time-low price by about $10 -- it's the best online right now among the major Apple retailers. We'll check in on Costco later. 

Apple Safe Browsing: in new updates, Apple will proxy Google's "Safe Browsing" service used in Safari through its own servers instead of relying on Google as a way to limit which personal data Google sees about users. 

Home prices: jump 15% in 4Q20 pandemic real estate rally. Bloomberg.

The Northeast led the way as buyers rushed to the suburbs. Fairfield County, Connecticut, home to Greenwich and other tony towns, rose 39% for the biggest increase in the U.S.

Discussion: Dak departs. Deshaun Decamps; Destination: Dallas -- February 11, 2021

 Updates

February 11, 2021: watching sports talk television all-day long since Super Bowl LV suggests Tom Brady has changed the conversation:

  • quarterbacks are tired of getting hit; getting sacked; risking injury (exhibit A: Dak Prescott); they want the protection Tom-Brad- at-age-43 gets;
  • quarterbacks want to be on a winning team; time is running out; how does a 43-year-old win a 7th ring; how does any quarterback get to the Super Bowl ten times?
  • bottom line: a lot of quarterbacks moving this next season or demanding changes on their own teams;

February 11, 2021: wow, was I right on this one. This is still the biggest story on sports talk television this morning -- the Dallas Cowboys ad in which Dak Prescott was not even seen! This is the talk right now: Dak departs. Deshaun decamps to Dallas.

February 10, 2021: biggest takeaway among quarterbacks following TB12's performance in LV? Quarterbacks have said "enough is enough." Quarterbacks want to be protected. Tired of getting hit. TBB figured that out. They knew they had to protect their franchise player, and they did. This is the number one issue that keeps coming up on sports talk television this week following the Super Bowl. 

February 10, 2021: wow, was I right on this one. This is still the biggest story on sports talk television this morning. The Super Bowl has already been forgotten but Jerry Jones and his Dallas Cowboys ad has everyone thinking it was the Cowboys in Super Bowl LV. LOL 

The big story today: Russell Wilson complaining that he is getting hit too much. That was one of my takeaways from Super Bowl LV. See this note. From that post:

Bottom line: KCC schooled. 

Offense, TBB:

  • keep it simple, understood the concept of the "queen bee"; protect TB12 at all costs;
    • sacked once?
    • TB12 standing upright at end of 99% of all plays?
    • never scrambled, except that one time going after a loose ball after a bad snap;
  • multi-dimensional: strong running game when it counted
  • passing: TB12 had only 200 passing yards

Pandemic-adjusted: most-watched Super Bowl in history. From Brietbart this morning:

Digital numbers were up 65 percent this year, proving that TV viewing continues to migrate away from broadcast TV and to streaming and mobile outlets.

Original Post
The Sports Page
The Most Brilliant Ad Ever

Updates

5:43 p.m. CT: I've literally watched every sports talk show on television today, from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and every show has led off with "the ad." Near the end of the day the Cowobys organization finally weighed in, saying it was an "oversight." LOL. That guarantees this story will continue into tomorrow. It will not end until Dak Prescott himself has weighed in and analysts have exhausted parsing his remarks.

Original Post

The most brilliant "ad" ever? 

The Dallas Cowboys commercial released today to encourage Dallas fans to buy season tickets.

This commercial -- 32 seconds long -- has been playing all morning on every sports talk television show. 

The "talking heads" are laughing at the ad, but again, there is no serious analysis, asking "why?"

The "controversy": the 32-second ad encouraging Dallas fans to buy season tickets does not include any footage of Dak Prescott, but Troy Aikman does make the cut.

The immediate question whenever an ad is released: who is the audience?

The audience for this ad:

  • Dallas fans
  • Dak Prescott
  • the organization

Dallas fans:

  • this suggests to me the internal polling showed there is no love lost between Dallas fans and Dak Prescott; 
  • internal polling might suggest that as great as Dak Prescott is, he is no Troy Aikman; not featuring him in the ad will not hurt season ticket sales; 
  • if there's one thing Texans pride themselves in, it's loyalty -- not just sports fans, but Texans across the board -- patriotism, loyalty -- holding out for more pay, shorter contract does not exemplify loyalty; Dak said he would stay with Dallas only as long as the pay reflected his "self-appraised" value;

Dak Prescott:

  • need we say more?

the organization:

  • this is the biggie;
  • this ad has been playing nationwide all morning long; more exposure than the Dallas Cowboys could have gotten any other way; huge amount of exposure
  • Jerry Jones: the Dallas Cowboys -- "America's team" -- this kind of exposure is priceless
  • any other NFL team getting this kind of exposure just two days after the Super Bowl? Nope.
  • Jerry Jones is the organization; is the team; the 32-second ad is about the Cowboys, not about Dak
  • if the ad is about the Cowboys, no one is going to get higher billing than Jerry Jones

Bottom line:

  • brilliant ad.

Brrr! It's Cold ... Everywhere --- February, 2021, Will Go Down As Warmest February In History -- February 11, 2021

Brrrr! It's cold ... everywhere ... and in March we will be told February, 2021, was the hottest February month on record. 

UK, northern Europe freezing; travel comes to a halt

Peak oil: It's here. And it's .... Shell. The WSJ. This is not going to end well. 

Shipped! Shipping companies looking for alternates to Los Angeles ports. The WSJ.

************************************
Back to the Bakken

Active rigs:

$58.48
2/11/202102/11/202002/11/201902/11/201802/11/2017
Active Rigs1555635836

No wells coming off the confidential list today.

RBN Energy: making sense of the hydrogen buzz, production economics edition, part 3. Archived.

When it comes to hydrogen, it’s fair to say that hard data on what it costs to produce the fuel is difficult to come by, particularly for “green” hydrogen. If you’ve followed our current work on the fuel, we hope you know at least a few more facts than the average person on the street, though we must admit we’ve really just been scratching the surface so far. Diving deeper into the nitty gritty of hydrogen production costs and economics is not for the faint of heart, but it’s necessary, unless you are of the mind to dismiss the fuel altogether. (We are not.) While it’s very early days for many production pathways to hydrogen, especially green hydrogen, time will tell if the costs to produce it follow a downward trend similar to those for producing hydrocarbons from shale or remain at levels so high the current hydrogen bubble bursts like others before it. We’re optimistic the former may pan out, and in today’s blog we continue our series on hydrogen with a look at the factors impacting production costs.

Nothing About The Bakken -- A Walk Down Memory Lane -- February 11, 2021

Back in the day, this was my primary assigned aircraft, the two-seat F-15D. Most likely the photo below is of the F-15E Strike Eagle, but doesn't matter. It's still a great photo and brings back lots of memories. That would be me, the GIB, the guy-in-back.

Welcome to my world: I had no choice -- every pilot I flew with was a whole lot braver than I was. LOL. 

The other day on the blog I mentioned that the newest model of the F-15 is now flying, and the USAF is preparing for delivery:

I wouldn't have bothered to post this but I'm listening to music in between Bakken posts and taking a break. I happened to run across this article on the F-15EX in the April, 2020, issue of Air & Space Magazine.  And speaking of great photos, this is a pretty cool photo:


For the archives, for the grandchildren.

With regard to the F-15EX, the linked article begins:

The Boeing F-15EX will be the latest and most capable variant of an airplane that has been in uninterrupted production since its first flight in 1972. It began life as an air-superiority fighter known as the McDonnell Douglas F-15 Eagle and later morphed into a two-seat, multi-role ground pounder dubbed the F-15E Strike Eagle. Long after the Air Force took delivery of its final F-15E in 2004, the St. Louis plant continued to build F-15s for sales to allies ranging from Israel to South Korea. Today, the wings being put together in Building 27A will be attached to an F-15QA destined for Qatar, while completed F-15SAs coming out of Building 67 are headed for Saudi Arabia. But the F-15EX will be smarter and more powerful than both.

“It’s a living, breathing, evolving platform,” says Boeing vice president for F-15 programs Prat Kumar. “The most recent avatar of F-15 is nothing like what was used 45 years ago. Frankly, it’s nothing like what the Air Force bought 15 or 20 years ago. F-15EX has a fly-by-wire flight-control system and one of the fastest, most capable mission computers in the world. It has an advanced, all-glass cockpit that can display synthesized data in a way that is useful for the warfighter. It has the most advanced radar on any fighter jet, and it carries more weapons than any other fighter.”

The Department of Defense 2020 budget request includes $1 billion to procure eight F-15EXs for the Air Force, with plans to acquire an additional 72 airplanes over the next four years to replace outdated and overworked F-15Cs and Ds that are ready to be retired. This would be a financial bonanza for Boeing, which has already landed a Navy contract for another so-called legacy aircraft, the F/A-18 Super Hornet.