The number of US oil and natural gas rigs slipped by 15 to a total of 913 last week -- the third consecutive week of declines, according to Baker Hughes. Oil drillers idled seven rigs, bringing that count to 736 units, the lowest level since June.
Demand for petroleum products climbed 2.4% year-on-year to over 20.2 million barrels per day last month, marking the highest level of demand for the month of September in a decade, according to the American Petroleum Institute. Gasoline deliveries were down 0.8% from a year ago to 9.4 million barrels per day, while distillate deliveries rose 3.4% to over 4 million barrels per day.
Alaskan officials have approached several foreign entities in recent months, including banks, sovereign wealth funds and energy producers, in an attempt to persuade them to invest in the state's moribund energy sector. China Investment Corp. and state-owned Chinese energy producer Sinopec both showed willingness to invest in a proposed natural gas pipeline, but Alaska's efforts could fall apart since energy deals backed by foreign capital face federal reviews.
Schlumberger and Baker Hughes anticipate a slowdown in production investments in North America as US drillers face pressure to improve returns, foreboding a challenging and uncertain fourth quarter for the oilfield services industry. However, Schlumberger Chairman and CEO Paal Kibsgaard says prices could pick up in the long term as slower spending by producers in North America and elsewhere helps stabilize the oil market.
Heavy investments in capacity expansions and the availability of cheap crude have boosted refining output in the Midwest to a record 4.06 million barrels of crude per day in recent months, helping the Midwest region reduce its reliance on the Gulf Coast. In the early 2000s, the Gulf Coast would deliver about 3.4 million barrels of crude and refined products per day to the Midwest, but that figure fell by 50% in 2016.
The Environmental Protection Agency abandoned proposals to change the Renewable Fuel Standard after an intervention from President Donald Trump. The move is a blow to refiners, which had pressed the agency to ease the compliance burden.
Stanford University scientists are using a 4.8-kilometer loop of optical fibers on the campus to record seismic activity caused by earthquakes. The loose fiber optic cables, placed inside plastic pipes, characterize vibrations from earthquakes and other sources and can tell the difference between two types of earthquake waves.
KrisEnergy is ready to start developing the Apsara oilfield off the coast of Cambodia in the Gulf of Thailand. The Singapore-based company will build an unmanned wellhead platform as part of the first phase in Block A, which consists of 3,083 square kilometers in the Khmer Basin and has water depths ranging from 50 to 80 meters.
Petroamazonas, part of Ecuador's state-run oil company, says it will use technologies and drilling methods to limit the environmental effects from oil development in the Yasuni National Park rainforest. The company will use small platforms and clustered wells in Block 31 and the Ishpingo, Tambococha and Tiputini fields, which together contain more than 2 billion barrels of oil.
India's Oil and Natural Gas says it plans to increase oil production and natural gas output in an effort to reduce the country's dependence on imports by 10%. The state-owned company says it will increase oil production from 22.6 million metric tons in 2017-18 to 26.42 million metric tons in 2021-22 from the combination of existing fields, projects under development and new prospects.
- Page 1