Last updateThu, 14 Dec 2017 8pm


U.S. Shale Output Expected to Rise Again in December

“U.S. shale production for December is expected to rise for a 12th consecutive month,” according to the Energy Information Administration (EIA), “as oil prices remain near their mid-2015 highs.”

Reuters reports that “projected gas output would increase in each of the major shale basins in December, with the biggest increase in the Appalachia region, which includes the Marcellus and Utica shale formations.” 

$10 Billion Plastics Manufacturing Plant Planned in TX

ExxonMobil and SABIC are planning to build a $10 billion plastics manufacturing facility in San Patricio County, TX. The project, Gulf Coast Growth Ventures, is the end result of the abundance of low cost U.S. natural gas.

Gulf Coast Growth Ventures will be the world’s largest ethane steam cracker plant capable of producing 1.8 million tons of ethylene per year, which would feed a monoethylene glycol unit and two polyethylene units. Construction is anticipated to begin in 2019 and should be completed by 2021. 

ExxonMobil Creating Super-Long Shale Oil Wells

ExxonMobil Corp. “recently finished four wells in North Dakota’s Bakken region that extend sideways for 3 mi (4.8 km), Barclays Plc analyst Paul Cheng said in a research note after meeting Exxon executives, and it’s closing in on the 4-mi mark,” Bloomberg reports.

“Although famously late to the shale revolution that’s disrupted the global oil industry, Exxon now appears to be transferring breakthroughs it made in the icy Russian Far East a decade ago to its North American fields. In 2007, from a perch on remote Sakhalin Island, the company drilled a total of 7 mi down and then sideways to reach a cluster of oil fields beneath the Sea of Okhotsk.” 

Baker Hughes Rig Count Up Nine Last Week

“Drillers added nine oil rigs in the week to Nov. 10, bringing the total count up to 738, General Electric Co’s Baker Hughes energy services firm said in its closely followed report on Friday.” This was the most rigs added in a single week since June.

Reuters reports that the rig count is “much higher than a year ago when only 452 rigs were active after energy companies boosted spending plans for 2017 in the second half of last year as crude started recovering from a two-year price crash.” 

Digitalization Set to Transform Global Energy System

Digital technologies are set to transform the global energy system in coming decades, making it more connected, reliable and sustainable. This will have a profound and lasting impact on both energy demand and supply, according to a new report by the International Energy Agency.

A transformation is taking place in how energy is produced – from smart oil fields to interconnected grids, and increasingly, renewable power. Digital technologies could help integrate higher shares of variable renewables into the grid by better matching energy demand to solar and wind supplies. Energy supply sectors also stand to gain from greater productivity and efficiency, as well as improved safety for workers. 

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