Utilizing Technology to Comply with Regulations

It’s no secret that greenhouse gas emissions and pollution are continuously becoming a problematic environmental issue. Therefore, in August 2015, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposed a suite of requirements under President Obama’s Climate Action Plan to reduce methane and VOC emissions from oil and natural gas production, processing and transportation activities. According to the EPA the proposed rules are, “a suite of commonsense requirements that together will help combat climate change, reduce air pollution that harms public health, and provide greater certainty about Clean Air Act permitting requirements for the oil and natural gas industry.”
[Read more…]

Bankruptcy in the US Oil and Gas Industry

The ongoing oil and gas industry crisis is bringing companies to their knees as a result of stubbornly low prices. As recovery is elusive and unpredictable, strategies to aid distressed companies and prevent bankruptcy have to be realistic, proactive, and address the obvious capital structure problems while preserving the underlying business.
One persistent problem in the oil and gas world right now is the pricing crystal ball is partly cloudy and partly sunny – that is to say there is a high degree of uncertainty around which direction prices are headed and when. Options for dealing with financial crisis are made much more complicated when opinions on the future direction of oil prices are as diverse and plentiful as subaquatic plant life.
[Read more…]

Déjà vu Oil Over Again

Why this downturn will be just like, and nothing at all like, the last one.

In the mid-1980s, the price of crude oil dropped by more than half in a matter of months. By 1986, oil was trading around $10 a barrel, down from a high of $35 a barrel a few years earlier. There were a number of reasons for the collapse in prices.
Slowing economies in the United States, Europe and Japan led to a decrease in demand. But production continued at the same, uninterrupted pace. Oil from non-OPEC countries flooded the market. The OPEC countries failed to curtail production. Indeed, Saudi Arabia actually increased production, partly in response to instability in the Middle East. The United States set out to end its dependence on oil imports. Inventories accumulated. Prices plunged.
[Read more…]

What’s Ahead for Employment in the Oil and Gas Industry?

There are many factors at play that have combined to dramatically curtail the need for oil. Aside from oversupply, other major contributors include global economic weakness – especially slower growth in China and continuing financial problems in Europe – tougher fuel economy regulations; more viable forms of alternative energy; and the development of extremely efficient engines on equipment as varied as cars, earthmovers and power plants. The dramatic growth of shale oil exacerbated the glut and had a hand in driving oil prices down along with OPEC’s strategy to keep pumping and exporting.
[Read more…]

The Second Coming of the U.S. as an Oil Powerhouse

The U.S. has been producing over 9 million barrels of oil per day through the first half of 2015. Production at those levels has not been seen since the early 1970s – the last time the U.S. was considered an oil powerhouse. Much has changed since that time. The potent combination of hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling has opened vast reserves of oil and natural gas that were once believed to be economically unviable. Our main source of imported oil is Canada and not the Middle East. The 77-year monopoly of Mexican state-owned petroleum company Pemex ended this year when it began partnering with foreign companies (including Italy’s Eni) to develop Mexico’s oil reserves.
[Read more…]