Kansas independent oil producers got an earful from members of the state’s congressional delegation Monday, mostly about regulation and tax reform. Senator Pat Roberts, and Representatives Lynn Jenkins, Kevin Yoder and Ron Estes took part in the annual meeting of the Kansas Independent Oil & Gas Association in Wichita. Yoder told the gathering that tax reform would be the “centerpiece” of the House’s work this fall. Jenkins complained about the Senate’s 60-vote threshold for ending filibusters, calling it “the only thing” keeping them from doing the right thing in Washington. Senator Roberts said he hopes they won’t have to do away with the rule, saying he thinks it would be bad for the country, making the Senate little more than the House.
Baker Hughes reported 949 active drilling rigs across the US Friday, a drop of eight rigs drilling for natural gas but an increase of three rigs looking for oil. Canada reported 220 active rigs, up three. They’re drilling at one site in Russell County and reporting drilling ahead on two leases in Barton County this week. Operators are moving in completion tools at two sites in Barton County, two sites in Ellis County, and one in Stafford County. Independent Oil & Gas reports 11 active rigs in eastern Kansas last week, up three, and 23 west of Wichita up one.
The Nomenclature Committee of the Kansas Geological Society recognized and named 16 new oil fields in Kansas last month, bringing the statewide total so far this year to 38, 22 more than the same period last year. The committee recognized two new fields in Ellis County, Coachman Energy’s Penney lease, and Stroke of Luck Energy’s Custer Valley play.
Operators filed 40 permits to drill at new locations last week, 22 east of Wichita and 18 in western Kansas, including two each in Ellis and Stafford counties. Statewide so far this year we’ve seen 859 new permits, compared to 598 a year ago and 1,535 at this time two years ago.
Independent Oil & Gas Service reported 27 new well completions across the state last week, 820 so far this year, including ten in eastern Kansas and 17 west of Wichita. There was one in Ellis County and two in Russell County but all three were dry holes.
Monthly numbers from Independent Oil & Gas Service show that through July, one in four completed wells statewide, and one in three in western Kansas failed to produce pay dirt. Operators reported 27 dry holes in July out of 80 completed wells. So far this year, out of 741 total completions, 180 were dry holes. Independent reported 54 newly-completed wells in eastern Kansas last month and 26 west of Wichita, including three in Barton County, one in Russell County and one in Stafford County.
Operators filed 93 permits to drill at new locations across Kansas last month. There were 41 new permits in eastern Kansas and 52 in western Kansas, including two in Barton County, two in Ellis County, and one in Russell County.
The US was a net-exporter of Liquefied Natural Gas for the first time in 60 years. Last week the government reported our capacity to export LNG is set to increase nearly sevenfold over the next three years thanks to five new export projects, as well as rising capacity on pipelines to Mexico. In its monthly Short-Term Energy Outlook the US Energy Information Administration raised its estimate of US crude oil output for this year and next year. EIA lowered its price expectations for this year, but left next year’s price forecast unchanged.
A rail bridge and rail line viewed as critical to the oil and gas industry in Texas will get a refit, thanks to a $7 million grant from the federal government. The funds will be used to rebuild the Presidio-Ojinaga International Rail Bridge across the Rio Grande, which was damaged and closed by fire nine years ago. Officials called the project a critical project to increase jobs and investment in the Permian Basin and the Texas oil patch.
Chinese crude oil imports in July dropped to their lowest level in seven months, although they were up 12 percent on an annual basis. According to Reuters both exports and imports increased less than expected and that has analysts worried that China’s economy may have started to show signs of a slowdown.
The list of people facing sanctions in Venezuela grew to 30 this week, But an outcry from the US oil industry appears to have stalled efforts to sanction the country as a whole. Officials say a ban on petroleum imports from Venezuela, our third-largest supplier, would cost U.S. jobs and drive up gasoline costs. The Trump administration on Wednesday slapped sanctions on eight members of Venezuela’s new constitutional assembly. The Treasury Department took the unusual step of sanctioning Maduro himself last month, freezing any assets he may have in the U.S. and blocking Americans from doing business with him.