Jack Gerard, the CEO of the American Petroleum Institute, or API, spoke at a lunch for business leaders in New Orleans on Thursday, July 17. In his speech, Gerard called for policy changes on the part of the Obama administration in regard to its approach to energy policy.
Gerard called the Obama administration’s current approach to energy policy irrational and stated that the nation needs the White House to take on a more significant and proactive leadership role to help it to make necessary adjustments for the era of energy abundance and security.
Gerard feels that the country is currently standing at an energy crossroads, but that government policy will play a key role in deciding how the United States continues in the industry in the future. It is currently the world’s largest producer of both oil and natural gas, but, according to Gerard, the energy policy of the Obama administration has not done much to help fuel that growth and is not doing anything to maintain it.
For more on Jack Gerard’s speech and opinions, read the full article at http://www.nola.com/business/index.ssf/2014/07/american_petroleum_institute_h.html
No one could have imagined that Israel would ever be in a position to sell gas to Egypt. This is because the country was purchasing gas from Egypt just two years ago. However, the trade was ended because of repeated bombing of the pipeline. Political pressures also played a role in influencing the country’s decision to cut off Israel’s supply of the commodity.
Two years later, both countries have signed a deal for Egypt to get gas from Israel’s gas field. The deal is being facilitated by Israel’s Noble Energy of Housto and Egypt’s Union Fenosa. It is believed that this latest agreement may trigger a much larger reserve. Tamar is only one of Israel’s offshore gas fields. The other one is Leviathan which is twice as large as Tamar.
Tamar is estimated to have approximately 10 trillion cubic feet of gas. This is enough gas to sustain Israel and provide them with the option of exporting the excess. Of the 10 trillion cubic feet of gas that Tamar is estimated to contain, Egypt is set to get 2.5 trillion of that amount.
In a recently released report, Gulfport Energy Corp. said that the company’s output is in line with guidance. The company is estimating that its production will be at an average of 27,100 boe/d. This estimation does not include the company’s latest acquisition of the Utica Shale from Rhino Resources Partners LP which produced approximately 900 boe/d during the quarter.
Gulfport is optimistic about the future of production despite the harsh winter conditions experienced. This is because downtime was factored in the guidance. The company will begin hydraulic fracturing shortly in the Darla pad in Utica. However, reports into its performance wont be made available until September. An update will be provided about the dry-type gas curve by June the latest.
Gulfport already owns 165,430 acres within the Utica but has further plans to increase its assets. Plans are afoot to acquire at least 8,000 additional acres in the Utica formation.
Despite the current shattering low prices of natural gas nationwide, Blackstone Group is making a giant leap of faith by purchasing three gas fired plants in Texas. The plants are being sold by retail electricity provider, Direct Energy, who initially purchased the plants to protect itself against the price increases in the domestic power market of the day.
Direct Energy bought the three plants for $331 million and is selling them to Blackstone for double the price. This investment will cost Blackstone Group $685 million. Reports have however surfaced that the investment firm is hoping that the state’s electricity prices remain very low.
Fears abound among state regulators that Texas’ increasing population could erode the electricity supply. As a result the Public Utilities Commission is considering paying power plants to keep excess energy. Currently, power plants are only paid for the power that they supply. This will be an incentive for energy companies to build more power plants.
The Independent Petroleum Association of America has elected a Houston based energy CEO to be their chairman. Michael Watford is the current chairman and CEO of Ultra Petroleum Corp, a Houston based energy company that specializes in acquisition and development of oil and natural gas properties. Houston is at the center of the formidable Texas energy industry. It is headquarters for numerous energy companies and electricity providers who serve the large Texas deregulated electricity market.
Over Watford’s 14 year term as CEO of Ultra Petroleum the natural gas company has seen its market value increase over 100 fold; from $50 million to $5.5 billion. He will take over for the outgoing chairman Virginia Lazenby. Watford’s term will be for 2013- 2015.
The IPAA represents thousands of independent oil and natural gas producers and service companies from across the United States. According to the association’s website, their mission is to “ensuring a strong, viable domestic oil and natural gas industry, recognizing that an adequate and secure supply of energy is essential to the national economy.”