Texas lawmakers have sent a bill to Gov. Rick Perry that would provide $225 million in general revenue funds to help repair and maintain county roads damaged by oil and gas production activity, mainly in the Permian Basin and Eagle Ford Shale regions.
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The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission approved petitions of Peoples Natural Gas Co. and Peoples TWP to implement long-term infrastructure improvement plans (LTIIP) in addition to a distribution system improvement charge. Peoples is to replace an average of 47 miles of pipeline per year during the five-year period of the LTIIP. Peoples plans to spend between $55 million and $71 million per year on pipeline, meter and service replacement over the five-year period. Peoples TWP is to replace an average of 28 miles of pipeline per year during the five-year period. Peoples TWP anticipates spending a minimum of $9.1 million per year over the five-year plan.
Occidental Petroleum Corp. (Oxy) Chairman Ray Irani withdrew as a nominee to serve another term on the board of directors, and he was a no-show for the company’s annual meeting in Santa Monica, CA, on Friday (May 3), Oxy said. Edward Djerejian, a former U.S. diplomat who served as an ambassador to Israel and who is a former assistant secretary of State, is assuming the role of independent chairman. He has been an independent director since 1996. Spencer Abraham, the former secretary of Energy for President George W. Bush, was elected independent vice chairman. Irani, 78, had worked at Oxy since 1978, taking over as chairman and CEO in 1990 after founder Armand Hammer died. Irani, who had planned to retire in 2014, had turned over the CEO post two years ago to Steve Chazen, 66, who had served in the executive suite since 1994. Earlier this year Irani had attempted to oust Chazen, which led to criticism by major shareholders. However, days ago the board said Chazen would remain CEO through 2014 “with full board support.”
Kinder Morgan Energy Partners LP has signed a long-term contract to support the expansion of its Sweeny Lateral pipeline, which it is building from the Kinder Morgan Crude Condensate pipeline to Phillip 66’s Sweeny Refinery in Brazoria County, TX. The expansion will increase the capacity on the 27-mile, 12-inch diameter lateral from an initial 30,000 b/d to 100,000 b/d. Kinder Morgan will add new pumps and an additional 120,000 bbl storage tank at its Wharton Pump Station in Wharton County, TX, and increase the truck offload capabilities at its DeWitt Station in DeWitt, County, TX. “We are pleased to provide Phillips 66 with a flexible option to move more crude and condensate out of the Eagle Ford Shale to their refinery in Sweeny,” said KMP Products Pipelines President Ron McClain. Kinder Morgan’s crude/condensate pipeline, which went into service last June, transports crude/condensate from the Eagle Ford to the Houston Ship Channel.
The Pennsylvania Supreme Court reaffirmed the state’s 131-year history of mineral rights law on Wednesday, unanimously ruling in favor of a Susquehanna County couple that had filed suit over the rights to the Marcellus Shale gas under their property.
While both oil and gas production rates in the Bakken Shale set records in February, there’s much more to come. With a large increase in multi-well pad operations, North Dakota’s chief oil and natural gas regulator expects to see “a big surge in production” in the Bakken Shale starting in June.
Devon Energy Corp. is increasing its oil-directed drilling this year across the Permian Basin and in the emerging Mississippian Lime as it continues its transition from a natural gas heavyweight, CEO John Richels said Tuesday.
An independent California-based geologist who has studied the Monterey Shale thinks it could eventually fulfill some of the hype surrounding its long-term reserves, but first it is going to take more serious geologic study and some small operators willing to take the risks that the big companies are not going to take.
The Energy Information Administration (EIA) joined a growing list of analysts raising 2013 natural gas price forecasts, saying in a Short-Term Energy Outlook (STEO) released Tuesday that it expects spot prices, which averaged $2.75/MMBtu at the Henry Hub last year, to climb to an average of $3.52 this year and $3.60 in 2014.