shale

Russia’s Gazprom and China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) have confirmed that construction is underway on the 4,000-km Power of Serbia Pipeline that will deliver up to 38 Bcma of gas to China.

The first joint of pipe for the Chinese sector of the project was recently welded near the city of Heibe in the northern Heilongjiang Province bordering Russia, according to CNPC. Russia started building its section of the 2,500-mile eastern route last year. The pipeline is due to become fully operational in late 2017.

Pipeline & Gas Journal’s 11th annual Pipeline Opportunities Conference brought in 400 attendees from throughout North America, all focused on getting the most up-to-date information regarding the oil and natural gas industry.

In addition to a full day’s worth of conference presentations and roundtables, guests had ample time to network during the even held March 24 at the Royal Sonesta Hotel in Houston’s Galleria district.

P&GJ’s 2015 international pipeline survey indicates 70,308 miles of pipeline are in various stages of construction or planned. Of these, 32,013 miles account for projects in the planning and engineering phase, while 38,295 miles are in various stages of construction.

NiSource Inc. and Columbia Pipeline Group announced July 2 separation of the two companies was completed through a distribution of all the common stock of CPG held by NiSource to its shareholders.

NiSource, based in Merrillville, IN, is one of the largest natural gas utility companies in the United States with over 3.5 million customers in seven states under the Columbia Gas and NIPSCO brands. The company also provides electric distribution, generation and transmission services for 500,000 NIPSCO customers in northern Indiana.

HOUSTON (AP) — Oilfield services company Baker Hughes Inc. said the number of rigs exploring for oil and natural gas in the United States this week increased by one to 885.

Houston-based Baker Hughes said Friday 674 rigs were seeking oil and 211 explored for natural gas. A year ago, 1,896 rigs were active.

Among major oil- and gas-producing states, North Dakota and Oklahoma each gained three rigs and Alaska, California, Kansas and Wyoming each gained one.

Texas lost six rigs, Pennsylvania declined by two and Colorado, Louisiana and West Virginia each lost one.

NAPCA held its annual one-day workshop Thursday in Houston as the industry struggles to find solutions amid market conditions that can be characterized as anything but certain.

As one speaker, Dolty Cheramie, president of Pipe Exchange, put it, ““No CEO or anyone else has one single minute of experience in the market we are in today.”

During his presentation, “A Look at the Oilpatch,” Cheramie didn’t pull any punches in what he saw a rough sledding for at least the next couple of years.

DENVER (AP) — Colorado's battle over who should regulate fracking could be on the fast track to the state Supreme Court.

The Colorado Court of Appeals on Monday asked to bow out of lawsuits over Longmont's ban on fracking and a 5-year-moratorium in Fort Collins.

The move would allow the Supreme Court to take the cases immediately, without waiting for the appeals court to hear arguments and make rulings. The higher court hasn't said if it will take the cases.

The largest natural gas producer in Africa is overhauling its laws in order to halt the decline of production, which has stagnated for more than a decade.

Algeria is the continent’s largest natural gas producer and the second largest supplier of gas to Europe (Russia is the largest supplier). It is also the third-largest oil producer on the continent after Nigeria and Angola.

ExxonMobil will add flexibility to process light crudes at its Beaumont refinery, increasing production capacity by about 20,000 bpd. This expansion will further strengthen ExxonMobil’s integrated downstream portfolio in Southeast Texas.

The refinery can currently process 365,000 bpd and produce 2.8 billion gallons of gasoline each year.

ExxonMobil said its decision to increase production at the Beaumont facility was based on the abundant supply and low cost of U.S. light crude produced from shale.

While many observers believe the deal Iran struck with six world powers over its nuclear program may depress oil prices even further, Russia’s energy minister says the cost of producing shale oil is likely to have an even bigger impact on the world market.

Iran’s deputy oil minister, Mansour Moazami, said his country’s crude exports would nearly double eventually from 1.2 MMbpd to 2.3 MMbpd once the sanctions are lifted, and Tehran has urged fellow OPEC members to adjust their output accordingly in order to keep prices stable.

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