Matt Damon has co-written and will star in an anti-fracking moving called “The Promised Land,”according to a report in Politico.
The film is expected to be shot in the Pittsburgh area and include other stars such as John Krasinski of “The Office” and Rosemarie DeWitt of “Mad Men” and the “United States of Tara.” The director is Gus Van Sant, who is know for directing “Good Will Hunting,” “Milk” and “Finding Forrester,” according to IMDB.
Devon CEO John Richels spoke on CNBC’s Mad Money Thursday evening, addressing misconceptions about the Oklahoma City-based energy company.
Richels said the company is producing 250,000 barrels per day of oil and natural gas liquids and that it is using some of its $7.5 billion stash of cash to increase its drilling budget in oil-rich areas.
One new area Devon is focusing on is the Cline Field on the eastern edge of the West Texas Permian basin.
It’s an area we’re going to be agreessive in the next few years and we’re going to develop quickly,” Richels said.
Richels also spoke about energy prices, saying he expects natural gas to drop below $2 per thousand cubic feet this summer while Brent Crude oil could approach $140 a barrel.
It sure could. The fundamentals of oil are different. When you get much past $120, you start to get degredation of demand. So I don’ t know if it will be sustainable at that level,” Richels said.
Pistol officials could not be reached for comment by Upstream magazine, but Sanguine Gas Exploration confirmed the rig was drilling a well for the Tulsa-based company.
More than a dozen pictures of the fallen rig were posted on website Drilling Ahead.
Boone Pickens spoke today on CNBC’s Kulow Report, saying crude oil prices could reach the record high of $148 per barrel this summer if the world follows through on its threat to block all oil exports out of Iran.
Despite the potential price run up, Pickens pointed out that the United States has the cheapest energy in the world. West Texas Intermediate crude priced at Cushing is 20 percent lower than the global Brent crude price, U.S. natural gas prices are 80 percent below global sales prices.
I don’t understand why people are complaining.”
Pickens said energy prices will begin to even out as more tractor-trailer fleets convert to compressed natural gas instead of diesel.
Add the National Governors Association to the list of those lobbying for extension of a federal production tax credit for wind.
The association sent a letter Wednesday to Congressional leaders urging them to extend the tax credit beyond its Dec. 31 expiration. The incentive allows for a 2.2 cents tax credit per kilowatt hour of electricity generated by wind. The industry and some lawmakers have said the extension is vital to stop a boom-and-bust cycle in wind energy production.
In the letter, NGA said predictable tax policies were needed to encourage clean energy across the country. It urged renewal of the production tax credit (PTC) and an associated investment tax credit (ITC).
Predictable tax policies provide a foundation for renewable energy development and can play an important role in our nation’s economic recovery. Therefore we are encouraging an extension of the both the PTC and ITC for at least 4 years. These tax credits can continue to encourage robust investment and deployment of renewable technologies by affording industry a reliable investment framework within which to operate.
Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin earlier signed a similar letter to congressional leaders in February advocating an extension of the wind production tax credit.
It looks like Delta Air Lines is trying to get into the refinery business.
The world’s largest airline is trying to buy the ConocoPhillips Trainer refinery near Philadelphia, according to CNBC. The sales price is likely between $100 million and $150 million.
ConocoPhilllips closed the 185,000 barrel-per-day refinery in September saying the plant was not profitable.
Part of the reason oil industry leaders have been pushing for new pipelines throughout the country is that new areas of oil production have created a glut of oil in Cushing and the Gulf Coast and Rocky Mountain refineries that feed from it, while refineries in the Northeast have access only to more expensive crude.
If the purchase goes through, it would give the airline direct access to jet fuel and allow the company to save money on the purchase and distribution of the fuel.
The drones are coming.
Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) are getting cheaper and more sophisticated, meaning they could be used soon for storm-damage assessment for utilities.
The utility industry’s research arm, Electric Power Research Institute, released a study today touting the benefits of UAVs for post-storm surveillance.
Researchers at New Mexico State University Flight Center recently used drones with high-resolution cameras to survey power lines from heights between 5,000 and 7,000 feet.
“Our research clearly shows that drones may provide utilities a tool that could reduce outage restoration time,” said Matthew Olearczyk, senior program manager for distribution research at EPRI. “Using live steaming video information, utility system operators would be able to dramatically improve damage assessment.”
EPRI said the technology would allow utilities to deploy repair crews faster and establish repair priorities.
The Associated Press has more on the civilian use of drones and the potential hurdles from the Federal Aviation Administration and the concerns from civil liberties groups.
An Indian oil and natural gas producer could be interested in a partnership in the Mississippi Lime oil play with Chesapeake Energy Corp., Reuters reports.
Chesapeake announced in February that it was aiming to complete a series of transactions to raise up to $12 billion this year.
Officials said the Oklahoma City-based oil and natural gas producer was interested in finding a joint venture partner to develop its 1.8 million acres in the Mississippi Lime formation in northern Oklahoma and southern Kansas.
Oil India Ltd could be that partner, according to Reuters. The company is looking to spend as much as $1.2 billion this year to acquire overseas oil and gas producing assets.
Neither company offered any comment for the Reuters report.
Activist investor Carl Icahn is fighting for control of CVR Energy Inc., which acquired the oil refinery in Wynnewood last year.
Icahn has offered to buy the Texas-based company for about $2.6 billion.
His initial approach was rebuffed by the company in January, according to a New York Times story, but about 64 percent of CVR’s outstanding shareholders have agreed to sell.
“I am gratified that shareholders have endorsed our offer in such a decisive manner,” Icahn said in a statement. “This extraordinarily high level of support is clear evidence to me that shareholders are overwhelmingly in favor of selling their stock to me for $30 per share, plus the contingent value right.”
The company, in a statement issued Tuesday morning, maintains its shareholders are better off without Icahn.
“Mr. Icahn acknowledges that he cannot at this time purchase any shares tendered in his offer, and such shares can be withdrawn at any time. The real choice for stockholders will be at our annual meeting where they will decide whether to elect Mr. Icahn’s hand-picked nominees in place of our qualified and experienced board of directors with their track record of delivering value.”
Icahn responded by blaming the board for trying to block the will of the shareholders “in the face of an embarassing vote of no confidence.”
“Now that the shareholders have resoundingly endorsed our offer and we stand ready, willing and able to pay $2.26 billion to shareholders, the board — instead of acting with dignity and admitting they were wrong as to our intentions — is now telling shareholders they can’t get paid until after the annual meeting, which for some reason they have not yet scheduled.”
Icahn urged shareholders to call or write CVR to get the annual meeting scheduled immediately so his takeover bid can be completed.
“With every day that elapses between now and the meeting date, there exists the possibility that an event will occur — such as a more dramatic version of the recent power failure at the company’s Wynnewood refinery in Oklahoma — that could rise to the level of a material adverse change, which could eliminate shareholders’ opportunity to accept our offer. In my opinion, the directors are exposing themselves to personal liability and endless litigation if they continue to thwart and delay the ability of shareholders to accept our offer.”
Oklahoma is poised to become one of a growing number of states to require energy companies to disclose the chemicals used in hydraulic fracturing of oil and natural gas wells.
State regulators approved disclosure rules last month, but they still must be approved by the Legislature.
Texas began requiring chemical disclosure on Feb. 1, directing producers to FracFocus.org to log the details of their fracturing operations.
Nearly 6,000 Texas wells have been added to the registry created last year by the Ground Water Protection Council and Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission, but some state residents still are not satisfied, according to Houston Chronicle report.
“The regulation is fine, but it’s not going to do any good. No one will know how to interpret what things go into the frack job one way or another, whether it’s doing any harm or good,” said David Trotter, an oil and gas attorney who is a partner in a 4,500-acre Texas ranch.
The newspaper reports FracFocus shows that drillers employ chemicals such as hydrochloric acid and methanol to help free oil and gas deposits in the shale rock. Chemicals are a small part of the overall mix, which is mostly water and sand.
The online registry includes a section about chemicals are using in hydraulic fracturing.