Jobs going as BP splits off its shale unit


BP acknowledges that some jobs have been cut as it creates a separate entity for its U.S. shale operation, but won’t confirm how many, FuelFix reports.


Study links wastewater injection, Oklahoma quake

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — New research suggests that the sharpest earthquake to strike Oklahoma may have been triggered in part by wastewater injection — which if true, would make the 2011 temblor the strongest ever linked to disposal practices within the oil and gas industry.

An industry spokesman says a cause-and-effect cannot be proven because work in the oil patch hasn't changed much in generations. A study of the same quake last year noted that wastewater had been injected into abandoned oil wells nearby for 17 years without incident.

The magnitude 5.7 quake, centered near Prague, knocked over four spires at a university 17 miles away and shook a college football stadium that moments earlier had held more than 57,000 fans. Fourteen homes suffered significant damage and two people near the epicenter suffered minor injuries. The quake caused at least $4.5 million in damages.


Greenpeace attempts to block Russian oil tanker

AMSTERDAM (AP) — Dutch police say they detained 31 Greenpeace activists Thursday as they attempted to prevent a Russian tanker carrying the first oil produced by a new offshore platform in the Arctic Ocean from mooring at Rotterdam Port.

The environmental group sent two ships, plus a fleet of rubber rafts, paragliders and activists on shore, to meet the Mikhail Ulyanov, a tanker chartered by Russia's state-controlled oil company, Gazprom OAO.


OPEC crude production slipping


Crude production in OPEC countries, under 30 million barrels a day in April, hasn’t been so low since 2011, according to a Bloomberg survey, which found that output was declining in Saudi Arabia and Iraq in particular.


Mexico lays out energy reform rules

MEXICO CITY (AP) — The Mexican government on Wednesday unveiled its proposed rules for a historic opening of the state-owned oil and energy industry, saying contracts and production licenses should be put out for public bid and go to the company that offers the best return.

Energy Secretary Pedro Joaquin Coldwell said the service station monopoly of state-owned Petroleos Mexicanos would fade only gradually as the necessary distribution and other infrastructure is made ready. Private companies will not be allowed to immediately open gas stations to compete with it.


Several factors behind Total 1Q profit drop

The Wall Street Journal

Total SA cited lower crude prices, higher exploration charges and issues with major projects that have lowered production as the French oil major reported a 10 percent decline in first quarter profits, The Wall Street Journal reports.

US sanctions raise concerns for foreign investors in Russia

LONDON (AP) — U.S. sanctions targeting the president of Russia's largest oil company could complicate the operations of Western oil companies with important investments in Russia, such as BP and Exxon.

The sanctions target only Igor Sechin, the president of Rosneft, and not the company itself. That means BP, Exxon and others will be able to continue to work with Rosneft, one of the world's biggest oil companies, to explore for and produce oil and gas.

For now.


Atlantic seismic data could help feds map a leasing area


Other factors, including environmental opposition and states’ interest, will be considered alongside how much oil may lay underneath the Atlantic when the federal government decides how to handle potential drilling there, outgoing Bureau of Ocean Energy Management director Tommy Beaudreau told Platts.


Bakken oil fields mark billionth barrel of oil

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — Oil drillers targeting the rich Bakken shale formation in western North Dakota and eastern Montana have produced 1 billion barrels of crude, data from the two states show.

Drillers first targeted the Bakken in Montana in 2000 and moved into North Dakota about five years later using advanced horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing techniques to recover oil trapped in a thin layer of dense rock nearly two miles beneath the surface.

North Dakota has generated 852 million barrels of Bakken crude, and Montana has produced about 151 million barrels through the first quarter of 2014, data show.


Colorado Senate group shelves Front Range drilling study

DENVER (AP) — A divisive proposal to commission a new study about the health effects of drilling along Colorado's Front Range was defeated Tuesday.

The Senate Appropriations Committee voted against the study amid concerns the Health Department already has the ability to study the effects. The measure had already passed in the House.

The bill would have ordered the state Health Department to study "health and quality of life effects" of drilling in Adams, Boulder, Larimer and Weld counties.


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