Fracking – headlines

April 3, 2014

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Will the Monterey Shale be an energy and economic boon for California?

Next Generation and Post Carbon Insitute
On March 27, 2014 “Drilling California” author J. David Hughes was joined by business leader and Next Generation co-founder Tom Steyer and Robert Collier, a research fellow with Next Generation, to discuss the prospects of developing California’s Monterey Shale during a panel in Sacramento. A recording of the event can be viewed below.

(28 March 2014)
San Francisco Bay Guardian report about the event here.
Link to the Drilling California: A Reality Check on the Monterey Shale report by David Hughes.
Link to the Next Generation report A New California Oil Boom: Drilling the Monterey Shale by Robert Collier.

Recognition in US of impact and cost of climate change

Tony Jones, ABC (Australia)
Heather Zichal, former advisor to Barack Obama on climate change discusses climate policy.

…TONY JONES: One of the things, however, that’s actually helped you do this is restrictions on the amount of natural gas that can be exported – turned into LNG and exported from the US. There are export restrictions. They don’t have those export restrictions here in Australia, so the promised transition from coal to gas power transmission hasn’t actually happened – or power generation, I should say – hasn’t actually happened. If those restrictions are lifted in the US, will that be a problem?

HEATHER ZICHAL: Well, you know, I don’t see the restrictions being lifted. I think that …

TONY JONES: Well you might – the WTO seems to have a different idea about this. I mean, the free trade rules could come into play here.

HEATHER ZICHAL: Right. Notwithstanding WTO issues, I think that the path that the administration is on recognises that there is an important role for natural gas exports to play in the US in terms of job creation and trade balance. But the process that the US has gone through has included very robust analysis to make sure we understand the domestic impacts that we’ll have on the manufacturing sector, on American consumers, and, you know, right now there are over 20 applications pending with the Department of Energy to export natural gas.

TONY JONES: And the manufacturers are screaming, "Don’t do it."

HEATHER ZICHAL: Exactly. And – and I think that the administration’s perspective is they need to take a very cautious step-wise approach. They need to look at each individual permit and make a decision based on that application and they’re continuing to do additional analysis the whole time, making sure that they understand what that looks like and what that means for the American economy…
(2 April 2014)

EIA: Tight-oil production pushes up US supply

OGJ editors, Oil & Gas Journal
US tight-oil production averaged 3.22 million b/d in fourth-quarter 2013, pushing overall US crude production to more than 10% of the world’s total production, up from 9% in fourth-quarter 2012, according to the US Energy Information Administration.

"The US and Canada are the only major producers of tight oil in the world. In recent years, North American producers have developed technologically advanced drilling and completion processes to produce oil from tight formations," EIA said. Tight oil production in the US represents 91% of all North American tight-oil production; the rest comes from Canada…
(31 March 2014)

After shale gas, now for tight oil

Nick Butler, FT Blog
Readers will be familiar with the issue of shale gas – its potential to change the world energy market and the controversies surrounding its development. But you might be less familiar with tight oil – oil from shale rock which can also be extracted by hydraulic fracturing. That is the next story and its development particularly in the UK will be every bit as controversial. Even the publication of the initial basic survey of the resources in place is being held up by political nervousness…
(30 March 2014)

Financial questions seen for US shale gas, tight-oil plays

OGJ editors, Oil & Gas Journal
Financial problems of operators in US shale gas and tight oil plays might hold production growth below current expectations, according to the author of a March comment published by the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies (OIES).

But a reorientation of the industry toward “the most commercially sustainable areas” of unconventional-resource plays might extend the period of growth, writes the analyst, Ivan Sandrea, an OIES research associate and senior partner of Ernst & Young London.

The producing industry has demonstrated it can create opportunities, innovate operationally, and address environmental issues despite evolving government policies and questions of public acceptance, Sandrea writes.

“What is not clear from higher-level company data is if the industry (both large players and independents) can run a cash flow-positive business in both top-quality and in more marginal plays and whether the positive cash flow could be maintained when the industry scales up its operations.”…
(25 March 2014)

Gas industry rejects US expert warning on fugitive emissions

David Claughton, PUB
Rick Wilkinson from the Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association says US research conducted three years ago isn’t relevant to Australia.

A US professor from Cornell University, well known for his expertise on fracking, is calling on Australia to abandon coal seam and shale gas production and focus on alternative energy.

Dr Anthony Ingraffea is a professor of engineering at Cornell and one of TIME Magazines "People Who Mattered" (2011)…

Professor Anthony Ingraffea on coal seam gas emiisions (ABC Rural)
Gas industry rejects US experts warning on fugitive emissions.(ABC Rural)
(27 March 2014)

Tags: climate change, Energy Policy, Fracking, fugitive emissions, Shale gas, tight oil