Analysis by the father of American Geopolitics Dr. Daniel Fine, MIT.

Posts tagged ‘Petroleum’

Analysis: Oil market glut will lead to declining prices through 2020 by Dr. Daniel Fine


The Full article  in the Farmington Daily Times Energy Magazine (USA TODAY)

With the OPEC-Russia meeting ahead, the price of oil is at a crossroad.

President Trump wants lower prices for gasoline at the pump and the Democratic Party wants a shortage to lift prices higher. This is the 2020 presidential election, to re-elect Trump or a create a Democratic left-center White House.

Is OPEC-Russia ready to sustain output cutbacks for $70 Brent Oil or continue revenue maximum against market share? Curiously, in the conversation at Vienna the Oxy purchase of Anadarko will resonate. Why? Oxy must now increase its export of oil to lower its debt (Warren Buffet and more) and prevent a serious management miscalculation of paying too much for Anadarko.

Permian Delaware shale, with new high volume pipelines completed soon, must find expanding import markets of l.5 million barrels of oil per day or the equivalent of OPEC-Russia resuming late 2016 output for export.

As this writer concludes this column for the The Farmington Daily Times’ Energy Magazine, which Is going on hiatus in San Juan County after this edition, there is no change in an outlook that dates back to the oil price crash of 2014-2016.

There is too much oil (over-supply) against world demand for it.

Exxon-XTO in the Permian is prepared for $40 per barrel, and to still add  $82 billion value in the New Mexican Permian or the Delaware in the next 40 years.

However, along with Chevron, Oxy,  EOG and Pioneer, it must have a market for the economic recovery of reserves estimated at nearly 47 billion barrels in the Permian Delaware Basin. They must export against OPEC-Russia production.

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The lifting cost of Saudi Aramco oil remains lower than Permian Shale. Saudi Aramco has sold debt (bonds) and 63% of its cash flow goes to its government? With oil demand slack and sluggish, and electric vehicles preparing for a 2024 market challenge both technically and politically (zero emissions).

While associated natural gas has partially become a free commodity from Permian Delaware producers, natural gas is up next, after coal, as a target for Green Energy. It should resemble oil on a smaller scale as price dependent entirely on exports in the form of LNG.

Will Persian Gulf, Australian, and Russian natural gas production roll backward in favor of American LNG? American exporters today cannot compete in a $5 per ton Asian LNG market.

Some San Juan Basin producers at the recent San Juan Basin Energy Conference openly discussed shifting capital spending

from natural gas to oil development.

This writer reaffirms his $50 average price for WTI oil in 2019 presented for the smaller independent producers at a briefing at Merrion Oil last December, but beginning early in 2020 forecasts a second half average of $38 per barrel .

In New Mexico, the Governor can adjust the Energy Transition Act basic law next February, but it should be a petroleum-revenue 30 day session without serious oil and gas organized opposition.

New Mexico is now a hybrid Green State with more exportable oil and gas than every OPEC country except Iraq and Saudi Arabia, and yet it will impose the most effective rules for methane capture.

No amount of ad hominem distraction against its policy and leadership will change this direction, and the nation could follow with the outcome of the national election next year.

Daniel Fine is the associate director of New Mexico Tech’s Center for Energy Policy. The opinions expressed are his own.”

 

Reactions to Delaware Basin news shows misunderstanding of petroleum economics by Dr. Daniel Fine


The article is here-> https://www.daily-times.com/story/money/industries/oil-gas/2018/12/18/delaware-basin-news-reveals-public-misunderstanding-oil-industry-economics/2282224002/

News of the size of oil reserves in the Delaware Basin (New Mexico’s share of the Permian) while OPEC was deciding how many barrels it will cut from the world market to lift prices caused epic confusion – and revelations of how little “authorities” and the media understand petroleum economics.

The New Mexico media, which relies mainly on interviews with petroleum industry spokespersons, got it wrong.

Government numbers came out as 46 billion barrels (Permian total) with 26 in New Mexico. This means nothing but oil in good rock along with technical recovery as an estimate. Some excited “authorities,” who should know better, exclaimed that there was more.

However, the estimate is based on the application of technical means to recover the oil. The reserves of real oil depend on ultimate economic recovery. This means technical based on geology, plus economics. A high price will recover the billions of barrels while a low price will not.

In short, the numbers reflect the rocks without economics.

The Delaware reserves plus the Texas Permian are now there to expand supply over 12 million b/d in the United States.

This writer has warned that world oil demand is sluggish and imprecise with only references to legacy guesswork that the developing world plus China demand will support prices long term or forever. Yet, world oil consumption has increased only 5 percent in the last 10 years.

OPEC, with Saudi Arabia as its leader, has expired as the world administrator of the price of crude oil. At its December meeting in Austria, Qatar quit after nearly 70 years and announced concentration in LNG production and world export as the existing market leader.

OPEC emerged with a serious factional split between OPEC original and OPEC with Russia. There would have been no agreement without Russia and its old Russian Federation members as producers. Moscow is the new world oil price-setter indirectly while OPEC Original becomes a collaborator in cartel for now. Simply put, Saudi Arabia no longer is the “residual supplier” alone.

The production roll-back of 1.2 barrels per day by both “OPEC” is not enough for “balance” supply and demand for world crude oil.  It is being tested daily by commodity traders. In a briefing to New Mexico independent and small producers before the meeting in Austria, this writer warned that 1.7 million b/d was needed for balancing stabilization. Without that size of a production and export reduction, the average price of WTI oil in 2019 will average $50 per barrel.

Nearing 12 million b/d and over the Permian producers voluntarily will be required by this price to revise capital spending and place production into DUC (non-completions) and storage. There is doubt that the export of tight or shale oil would continue if the Brent price falls lower and loses its premium over WTI. A net cutback of Permian between 500,000 to 750,00 b/d should be a non-OPEC response to an oil glut even more serious than 2014.

Saudi Arabia is untouched as an American strategic ally in confronting Iran in the Middle East as a hegemonic threat.

Despite some Republicans and the Democratic Party in Congress, violation of human rights over the death of a Saudi journalist and critic of the Crown Prince will not override U.S. national interests in the Middle East.

President Trump has not deviated from post—World War Two foreign and defense policy.

Trump wants low oil prices for American consumers and forced OPEC this summer to pump more to offset export sanctions on Iran.

Still, with OPEC under a deep division which no President could achieve since 1973, Trump as a geopolitical manager of world oil has removed about 500,000 b/d between January and December of 2018. America, via Trump and without a formal cartel alignment, determines much of the price of world oil.

The United States and its Southwest tight and shale oil has changed from dependence on world oil to domination. Never again can OPEC engage the U.S. in a price and market share war as it did in 2014-2016 through supply acceleration in an oversupplied world market.

WTI emerges as the new world price. It is American barrels that set the price and OPEC is a price-taker. Since there are nearly 50 billion barrels in reserve in New Mexico, how will the Permian producers set a return on investment in a free market for petroleum?

Dr. Daniel Fine is the associate director of New Mexico Tech’s Center for Energy Policy and the State of New Mexico Natural Gas Export Coordinator. The opinions expressed are his own.

Dr. Daniel Fine: Oil – before and after the November election (USA TODAY Farmington Daily Times)


The article can be found here-> https://www.daily-times.com/story/opinion/columnists/2018/06/24/fine-oil-before-and-after-november-election/699460002/  The Trump Administration is moving towards less royalty rates on Federal land leases, less Bureau of Land Management discretion on Environmental Protection Act obstruction on the Application for Petroleum Drilling process, less coal and nuclear power generation decline, and less oil supply confidence in OPEC-Russia world price management.

This is the thrust of the signature world energy domination policy of Secretary Ryan Zinke for the last 16 months. It accounts for the action of OPEC-Russia 10 days ago. Saudi Arabia led OPEC to increase oil production to respond to President Donald Trump, but averted a price shock with gradualism. More output from OPEC offers increased revenue in the very short term.

It now faces an election to decide majority party control of Congress. Should the Democratic Party win at least in the House of Representatives, President Donald Trump will be set back on energy policy and its action realization. He will be forced to use executive power narrowly.

The Democratic Party will prepare for 2020 and the foreclosure of Trump-Zinke on world energy domination through an American petroleum system and public land dispensation.

What will the Democratic Party control of energy in Washington and Santa Fe look like?
Imported oil is consistent with a resumption of climate change energy policy which is less carbon in the economy and more renewables as the alternative.

World investment flows are putting solar and wind ahead of oil and gas for the first time. Electric cars are now one to every six in sales in California and soon in Europe, displacing diesel engines.

The Democratic Party in Washington in 2020 will no doubt align with the European Union in Climate Change with a roll-back of the Trump Administration regulatory reform.

Methane, public land access, a return of BLM dominance, along with tax and infrastructure incentives can be expected. Battery charging technology and its placement capacity expansion on the Interstates will promote the market for electric vehicles. New issues restricting unitization, spacing and density of oil and gas wells should appear on state and Federal land.

In Santa Fe, the current Martinez energy policy and plan (2015) would be rejected in favor of a new Democratic Governor’s choice to start over in 2019.  It should be like Colorado’s energy policy but with strong regulatory hydraulic fracturing intervention and fresh water use conservation emphasis.

The oil and gas industry concentration on the Delaware, Permian, Williston (along with the Bakken Formation), Eagle Ford basins along with the Marcellus in natural gas will double up at heavier entry cost and consolidation.

This process, however, promises San Juan Basin natural gas higher prices. New exploration and production on public land would be minimal and legally challenged.

New off-shore U.S oil would be closed with “national monument” type public law.
The Democratic Party has no conservative business Democratic faction to offset the impact on American oil and gas as an industry.

In New Mexico, county leaders from San Juan, Eddy and Lea will continue to argue on the basis of statewide revenue. The Democratic Party in Santa Fe must demonstrate economic development through diversity while oil and gas is politically isolated.

With Canadian imports and even Russian gas in Boston harbor in very cold and snow-storm winters, the East Coast can return to the way it was before Trump on foreign oil imports – America no longer “First.”

The West Coast without refineries and wired power from natural gas is already there in Democratic Party dominance and declining combustion engines.

Dr. Daniel Fine is the associate director of New Mexico Tech’s Center for Energy Policy and the State of New Mexico Natural Gas Export Coordinator. The opinions expressed are his own.

Oil leaders: OPEC threatening U.S. economy and New Mexico’s lifeblood; Nation has lost 400,000 oil and gas jobs in past two years


The full article is here-> http://rdrnews.com/wordpress/blog/2016/10/08/oil-leaders-opec-threatening-u-s-economy-and-new-mexicos-lifeblood-nation-has-lost-400000-oil-and-gas-jobs-in-past-two-years/

Dan Fine, an oil economist with the New Mexico Center for Energy Policy, speaks at a conference in Carlsbad recently about how foreign oil imports are hurting the American oil industry. Fine said OPEC has flooded the U.S. market with foreign oil since 2014 in an intentional effort to put U.S. producers out of business, while Saudi Arabian-backed companies are trying to buy American companies in an effort to control the flow of oil within U.S. borders. (Hobbs News-Sun Photo)

CARLSBAD — Oil experts say America is under attack by Saudi Arabia and OPEC, but instead of bombs, the OPEC oil cartel is dropping millions of barrels of oil on the U.S. economy in a clear effort to undermine the nation’s oil producers and kill any chance of American energy independence.
The first to feel the flood of foreign oil into the U.S. are the independent oil producers, whose stripper wells in Texas alone account for 20 percent of the nation’s oil and gas production, said Judy Stark, executive vice president of the The Panhandle Producers & Royalty Owners Association.
Stark was one of the half dozen speakers at an event of 25 people Sept. 27 in Carlsbad where the Panhandle Import Reduction Initiative, a group of independents seeking import quotas on foreign oil, met to announce their “white paper” that will be presented to the next president.
“We know OPEC has toyed with our market for many years but what I see coming now is a threat, without a doubt, to our national security,” Stark said. “The Middle East wants control of the U.S. market. When they came out and decided to flood the market with oil and drive U.S. producers out of business, their whole point was to take back their lost market share — our production. They are telling us is they are not going to let us produce our own natural resources. Guess what? They have done a pretty good job.”
The Sept. 27 Carlsbad meeting was a first battle cry that Dan Fine, a co-founder of the initiative and oil economist with the New Mexico Center for Energy Policy, said won’t be taken up by the nation for two years — when the rest of the country wakes up and finds it is too late to stop OPEC from controlling America’s energy industry.
“We are pioneers,” Fine said. “My point is, we are sitting here today 18 months to two years ahead of everyone. Sometime in early 2018, the country will discover what we are having a discussion about here today.”

What’s at stake?

What’s at stake is some 276 billion barrels of oil reserves now estimated to exist in the United States.
According to Fine, that number surpasses what Saudi Arabia has and they are terrified. Fine quoted Harold Hamm, CEO of Continental Resources, concerning the shale oil discoveries made in the United States.
“The United States has increased oil production by an enormous 65 percent over the past five years,” Fine said, quoting Hamm’s statement. “We can and should use our nearly unlimited oil and gas supplies to drive a stake through the heart of OPEC forever.”

Energy group hopes to reduce foreign oil imports


by James Fenton

The full article is at–> http://www.daily-times.com/story/money/industries/oil-gas/2016/06/14/energy-group-hopes-reduce-foreign-oil-imports/85855044/

“FARMINGTON – A group of oil and gas executives and energy policy experts from the Texas Panhandle and New Mexico’s piece of the Permian Basin are pushing a plan to restrict seafaring imports of foreign oil from coming into the U.S. in order to stabilize the oil and gas industry and bring back lost oilfield jobs.

The group’s plan, which would exempt crude oil imported from Mexico and Canada, is an effort to push back against the price wars the group said are being waged by OPEC, or the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, led by Saudi Arabia.

Members met at the School of Energy at San Juan College Tuesday to promote  the “Panhandle Import Reduction Initiative,” which they say could be implemented in multiple phases within 90 days of the next administration, with the ultimate goal of reducing heavy crude oil imports to about 10 percent of demand.

Launched in November, the initiative aims to cut foreign oil imports enough to activate more domestic drilling rigs and boost domestic production to meet current demand levels within four years.

Former state legislator and Four Corners Economic Development Chief Operating Officer Tom Taylor said the drop in natural gas prices eight years ago and the fall of crude oil in 2014, has delivered prolonged pain to the regional economy.

“We find ourselves … in a situation now where we’re down about 6,000 jobs, most of those in the oil and gas industry,” Taylor said of the San Juan Basin. “We have about 11,000 people who have left (San Juan County) … So while we’re down 6,000 jobs and down 11,000 people, we’ve built seven fast-food restaurants, three more under construction, and two big box stores. It’s a different world out there.

“But the fact of the matter is that the economic base of the community is in trouble. And not only is the community in trouble, but the state of New Mexico is in trouble, and not only is New Mexico in trouble but our nation and its security. It’s all tied together. It’s a very difficult situation we find ourselves in when we have one country that can control oil prices. It goes beyond free trade. It’s a problem we need a solution to. We are at the dependence of foreign oil.”

Taylor said about a third of New Mexico’s general fund comes from the oil and gas industry in the form of taxes and fees.”

JOIN THE FIGHT TO GET OIL FIELD JOBS BACK! REDUCE FOREIGN OIL IMPORTS:


 

 

For Immediate Release Farmington, New Mexico
Contact: Dr. Daniel Fine 505-771-1865
Christa Rommé 505-566-3618
THE SAN JUAN BASIN IS JOINING THE FIGHT TO REDUCE FOREIGN OIL IMPORTS TO INCREASE LOCAL PRODUCTION
The Panhandle of West Texas, a center of American oil since early in the 20th century, answers OPEC and Saudi Arabia with a call for a Presidential Proclamation to establish quotas on imports of foreign oil. And they have asked the San Juan Basin to join this call. Presenters from Texas and New Mexico will be leading a local discussion about what measures can be taken to reduce our national dependency on foreign oil. Similar to “buy local” campaigns across the nation encouraging retail consumers to spend their dollars at home, this proclamation would have Americans buy oil produced in America. Demand for US production would then go up, putting recently laid-off workers back in the field. The United States should no longer allow Saudi Arabia and the middle east to manipulate our economy by crippling our ability to produce and use our own natural resources. We have been forced to comply with the consequences of decisions made by a country whose intent was to take over a “market share” that was ours and make it theirs. The results were oil prices plummeting to $26 a barrel.


The “bust” in oil exploration and production has left families, companies, both large and small, with bankruptcy and hundreds of thousands out of work. Since Thanksgiving of 2014, Saudi Arabia has increased its production to lower prices to shut-in unconventional oil in all areas of the US. It is a price war which has suspended the prospect of American energy self-sufficiency.


The Panhandle Import Reduction Initiative for oil import quotas on foreign oil is nothing new. It aims to revive the 1959 quota system of President Eisenhower who acted to sustain a healthy oil industry and middle class communities which it employs for reasons of national security. And it worked for 14 years to keep domestic oil from going out business because of foreign imports.


Import quotas on light tight oil will be 100% — no more imports within the first 60 days of the new American President’s term next year. Light tight oil or oil from shale is an American technology triumph and the pathway to abundance and security against foreign oil supply cut-off threats. Southwest and Dakota oil will be unbound. North American oil will avoid the risk of dependence on the world ocean as the transportation for imports. Oil from shale has so far supported national income savings in the balance of payments of over 500 billion dollars in the last five years.


President Eisenhower’s import quotas limited heavy sour oil to 10-12% of yearly American oil demand — enough to take care of Canada’s current exports to the United States.
The lower the oil price goes and the longer it stays there because of the Saudis flooding the market, the higher it will go and the longer it will stay there when demand gets greater than supply but it could be too late for the US because the US operators and other international companies are not investing in exploration, the oil that we will need in 5 to 10 years is not being discovered and developed today. OPEC cannot supply all the world’s needs. When demand outpaces supply, the price will skyrocket and stay there until the oil operations that are now curtailed can ramp back up. That may take years due to all the layoffs taking place today. All consumers will be hurt by the high prices. That would not happen if we had reasonable prices today to let us keep exploring for and developing new oil reserves for our future needs.


We are at a cross road and its time we take a stand. Imported oil is rapidly increasing and could or will return our country into the same dependency which began in the late 1970s and lasted to 2010; therefore, risking our national security. American investment in major oil projects has been stopped by the price war. So far OPEC and Saudi Arabia are over-producing in world conditions of over-supply to lower prices enough to prevent required replacement of shale reserves. This is the Panhandle Import Reduction Initiative’s answer to Doha and later OPEC in June and beyond:
Import Quotas will start a new cycle.


The presentation, featuring Dr. Daniel Fine with New Mexico Tech and New Mexico State Energy Policy, T. Greg Merrion and other industry experts will take place on Tuesday, June 14th from 11:00am – 12:45pm in the Merrion Room at the School of Energy at San Juan College, 5301 College Boulevard, Farmington. This event is free and open to the public.

This is what an oil bust looks like by Jonathan Thompson


Low prices have energy companies and communities reeling as rig counts plummet and unemployment climbs.

The full article is here-> http://www.hcn.org/articles/this-is-what-an-oil-bust-looks-like

“In early March, Daniel Fine, associate director of the New Mexico Center for Energy Policy, told a gathering of tribal energy officials that the oil bust is officially on. Those gathered, however, sure as heck didn’t need an expert to tell them that. In the oil and gas patches it has become clear that the economic gains of the so-called shale revolution are being wiped away by one of the worst fossil fuel downturns in U.S. history.

Now, the oil companies are crying for help. First, they got the crude oil export ban lifted. Next they want proposed federal rules on methane emissions weakened or scrapped. As if any of that will help.

Back in 2010, the price of a barrel of Brent crude (the international oil price benchmark) topped $80. That made it profitable to extract oil from tight shale formations, which is especially costly. A drilling frenzy ensued, domestic oil production skyrocketed, oil companies raked in profits and oil patch communities prospered.

But all that new oil on the market, plus China’s slowing economic growth, began to dampen oil prices in the summer of 2014. Instead of curtailing production to keep prices afloat, OPEC’s leaders launched a thinly veiled price war, clearly aimed at putting U.S. producers out of business. Here are some indicators that OPEC won the war:

The U.S. rig count has collapsed to levels not seen since, well, ever. With both oil and natural gas prices at near-record lows, it simply doesn’t make economic sense to spend up to $10 million to drill a well. So the rigs are shutting down. In September 2014, 1,931 oil and gas rigs were operating in the U.S.; today there are just 476. That’s a 75 percent decrease, and it’s still some 50 percent lower than the 1987 count, which followed what was considered the biggest, baddest bust ever, until now. Tom Dugan, who runs an oil and gas production company in northwest New Mexico, told the Farmington Daily Times, “It’s the hardest bust I’ve been through and I have been in this business for 57 years.”

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