Last updateThu, 19 Oct 2017 5pm


BSEE Director Charts Path for Robust Offshore Energy Production

Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) director Scott Angelle discussed the work underway at BSEE with industry members at the Louisiana Oil & Gas Association Fall Meeting Tuesday in Lafayette, LA.

“We are in a time of change,” explained Angelle. “Now is the time to move beyond the goal of energy independence to energy dominance.”

Discussing the steps that BSEE is taking to move forward, Angelle said that regulatory reform, integrating a risk-based protocol into the inspection program, and reviewing permit processes to increase efficiency are all efforts underway at BSEE. 

What's Affecting Crude Oil Price Differentials, Refining Decisions

Growth in global liquid fuels supply since March 2017 has been driven by increases in the production of historically higher-priced light crude oils. This growth has more than offset recent declines in the production of medium and heavy crude oils. As these production trends continue, price differences between certain crude oils are narrowing, and refinery operation decisions are changing.

Global production of light crude oil has increased, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) reports. Libya and Nigeria, which are not participating in OPEC’s production cuts, have increased production of their light-sweet crude oil in recent months. In addition, much of the increase in U.S. crude oil production has come from shale formations in the lower 48 states, which contain primarily light-density crude oil. 

Permian ‘Super Basin’ Holds Trillions in Untapped Oil

Energy researchers at IHS Markit have completed the first, three-year phase of a massive Permian Basin research project that models and interprets the giant basin’s key geologic characteristics to better estimate its remaining hydrocarbon potential, and initial results indicate the giant basin still holds an estimated 60 billion to 70 billion barrels of technically recoverable resources.

“The Permian Basin is America’s super basin in terms of its oil and gas production history, and for operators, it presents a significant variety of stacked targets that are profitable at today’s oil prices,” said Prithiraj Chungkham, director of unconventional resources at IHS Markit. “In this analysis, we’ve modeled and interpreted more than 70 formations and benches across the Permian Basin and have delivered them in a work-station-ready 3D format, so Permian operators or new-entrants can fast-forward their analysis.” 

DowDuPont Opens New Ethylene and Plastics Plant in Texas

DowDuPont Materials Science announced the startup of its new integrated world-scale ethylene production facility and its new ELITE enhanced polyethylene production facility, both in Freeport, TX. Both units will continue to ramp up through the third quarter and are expected to reach full rates in the fourth quarter of 2017.

In addition to supporting Dow’s near-term capacity additions, the ethylene facility will also support further planned debottlenecks to unlock additional polyethylene capacity. 

Construction Underway on Atlantic Sunrise Pipeline

Construction is officially underway in Pennsylvania on the greenfield portion of the Atlantic Sunrise pipeline project – an expansion of the existing Transco natural gas pipeline to connect Marcellus gas supplies with markets in the Mid-Atlantic and Southeastern U.S.

Construction broke ground in Pennsylvania Sept. 15, 2017, in Columbia and Wyoming counties as site preparation began for two new natural gas compressor facilities. With all necessary permits and construction releases in place, pipeline construction in Pennsylvania could begin as early as Sept. 25, 2017. Pipeline construction will consist of eight different construction spreads, six of which will be working concurrently in eight Pennsylvania counties. The 186-mile pipeline installation will be completed by four primary construction contractors. 

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