Stale Thoughts and Broken Links

Old entries from my weblog on geophysics and the energy industry.


WSJ (subscription): Crude-Oil Prices Reach New High on Supply Fears.

"Heightened uncertainty over the future of leading Russian oil producer Yukos OAO helped lift crude-oil futures by more than $1 to a new all-time high of $43.85 a barrel in New York Friday."

Houston Chronicle: Globe's growing thirst poses challenge to big oil. Search is on for access to locations never before tapped.

"Despite Shell's quarterly profits of $4 billion -- up 54 percent year-over-year -- the company pumped 5 percent less oil and gas than it did at this time last year. ConocoPhillips' 75 percent profit jump didn't keep its production from falling 5 percent, as well."

NYT: Oil, Venezuela's Lifeblood, Is Now Its Social Currency, Too.

"Seventeen months after an antigovernment strike crippled production, Venezuela's state oil company, Petróleos de Venezuela, has made what analysts call a Herculean return." ...

"For now, Pdvsa is awash in cash. Its oil revenue in 2004 will top $7 billion, according to an estimate by LatinSource, a network of economists based in New York."


PR Newswire: I/O Reports Second Quarter Results.

"Based on our current pipeline of business, the expected impact of our new product introductions, and the acquisitions of GX Technology and Concept Systems, we now expect 2004 revenues to range between $255 and $270 million. Much of our projected top line growth is expected to come from continued market penetration of our acquisition systems, an overall growth trend evident in the seismic market, both land and marine, and continued growth of GX Technology's Integrated Seismic Solutions offering."

PR Newswire: Core Laboratories posts record second quarter revenues.

"During the quarter, Core also received $18,400,000 from the sale of certain specialized geophysical and seismic-related assets which had been held in discontinued operations."

> The Paradigm purchase.

PR Newswire: Dawson Geophysical Reports Profitable Third Quarter.

"Funding of approximately $10,000,000 during fiscal 2004 for the deployment of two recording crews, energy sources, additional recording channels for all eight crews, vehicles, and maintenance investment has been from operating cash flow and existing cash reserves. These expansions have elevated the Company to the position of number one provider of onshore seismic services in the U.S. lower 48 states in terms of active crew count...."

Honolulu Advertiser: Lost baby whale may have starved.

"But the links between undersea noise and changes in whale behavior have been raising increased concern, including two new reports in the past week."

> Every time a dead whale washes ashore ...


Houston Business Journal: Input/Output ordered to pay $2 million in damages.

"Following a dispute involving manufacturing defects, I/O filed an initial lawsuit in Fort Bend against Paulsson in October 2002. Paulsson responded with a countersuit against I/O including the fraud, breach of contract and breach of warranties."

United Press International: Sonic tests aimed at protecting whales.

"Scientists at Columbia University's Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory said they are investigating [seismic airguns], which are used by some 100 vessels worldwide to penetrate into the seabed for oil exploration and geophysical research, with an estimated 15 to 20 active on any given day."

I haven't been following the Yukos story here, but it's quite interesting. It seems like there's a new angle every day --

Bloomberg News: Murder spills over into Yukos mess.

"Shares in Yukos, Russia's biggest oil exporter, plunged 21% after the government charged the company's second-largest owner, Leonid Nevzlin, with murder and put him on a most-wanted list."


Reuters: Schlumberger profit jumps, outlook favorable.

"Schlumberger Ltd. today said quarterly profit tripled as the No. 1 oil field services company benefited from a rise in drilling activity in both North America and overseas that is expected to continue at least through the end of the year." ...

"The company's WesternGeco seismic exploration joint venture with Baker Hughes Inc. posted operating income of $15 million compared with a year-earlier loss, helped by lower amortization costs, improvements in Europe, and savings related to restructuring steps it took last year."

Investors Business Daily: Oil service companies dominate news.

"However, [Schlumberger] earnings-per-share missed the Street view by a penny and results from WesternGeco, the company's seismic joint venture with Baker Hughes (BHI), were disappointing." ...

"From operations, Halliburton beat analyst estimates, but posted a net loss as charges hurt second-quarter results. See full story. Halliburton shares lost 34 cents to $30.70."


Business Week: Oil Prices: Ready to Sputter?

"[Jack] Adkins predicts that oil, which now trades just shy of $41 a barrel, will rise a bit further, perhaps as high as $43, topping its all-time high of $42.45 set on June 2, only to then collapse. This time he thinks it will drop back as low as $28. He thinks the answer lies in the pattern shown on the charts and other tools, especially an analytical technique known as the Bollinger Bands."


I bet you guys have been wondering why I haven't had a whale link in so long. Well, I would hate to disappoint you --

Reuters: Whaling talks attack oil and gas firms.

"On the second day of talks on Tuesday marked by sharp divisions between pro- and anti-hunting nations, the 57-country body passed a motion saying energy exploration could kill off the 100 remaining grey whales near Russia's Pacific coast and asked for some surveys to stop."

CBS Marketwatch: Benthos scores on strong Q3 results.

"Shares of Benthos Inc. soared Tuesday after the maker of oceanographic products rode 30 percent growth in third-quarter sales to a robust profit upturn." ...

"In particular, Benthos benefited from higher orders for seismic hydrophones, used in offshore oil and gas exploration, and for glass instrument housings designed for underwater electronics [for an astronomical observatory being constructed in the ice below the South Pole], said Ronald Marsiglio, president and CEO, in a statement."


Reuters: U.S. Addiction to Foreign Oil Deepens.

"‘Why on earth would you drill here when we've been drilling here for 120 years and when there's vast untapped regions across the globe?’ said Kyle Cooper, analyst at Citigroup Global Markets in Houston."

Petroleum News: Kerr-McGee plans to drill up to six North Slope wells.

"Kerr-McGee drilled two wells in what is now the Nikaitchuq unit last winter, and the company said in April that the Nikaitchuq No. 1 production tested more than 960 barrels per day of 38 degree API oil from the Sag River formation."


O&GJ: Experts debate government role in averting US oil worker shortages.

"‘The average age of a geoscientist in the oil industry today is 49 years old. He is a grandfather with two children. He will retire in 10-15 years, taking his expertise and knowledge into retirement with him, with few successors coming behind to maintain our leadership position,’ [said Jim Wicklund, managing director, energy and research, Banc of America Securities LLC]."

Houston Business Journal: OYO to buy printhead business from Graphtec.

"OYO Geospace is a Houston-based designer, maker and distributor of instruments and equipment used primarily in the acquisition and processing of seismic data for the oil and gas industry."


NYT: Soaring Oil Prices, but No New Boom in Houston.

"... the evolution in the oil business in Texas and around the world ... has concentrated deal making and specialized research in Houston while large, labor-intensive exploration projects moved elsewhere."

AP: IEA Foresees Oil Demand Growth Cooling.

"... the world has little more than 1 million barrels in spare capacity, almost all of it in Saudi Arabia. If world demand rises by 2.5 million barrels between the second quarter of this year and the fourth ‹ as the IEA predicts it will ‹ this capacity cushion will shrink to nothing ..."

O&GJ: ICF Consulting forecasts US natural gas prices will fall during next several years.

"Strong economic and power sector demand growth are likely to keep prices high in the very near term, but added production and falling oil prices will push prices down as early as 2005."


Oil & Gas Journal: Shell starts gas production from deepwater Coulomb development in Gulf of Mexico.

"The C-2 well May 2 became the world's deepest water depth completion in 7,565 ft of water. The C-3 well was then drilled in 7,570 ft of water May 19."

O&GJ: Unocal concludes successful appraisal of St. Malo discovery in Gulf of Mexico.

"The $31 million St. Malo appraisal well at Dana Point was drilled to 28,903 ft, about 2,000 ft deeper than the original Dana Point well that was completed as a dry hole in early 2001. Redrilling on the Dana Point location saved Unocal and its coventurers $25 million vs. the cost of drilling a new well."

Free Wireless Internet (WiFi) Access Points in Houston, Texas.

> I've been using two of the sites on this list almost daily. I'll have to check out some of the other locations.


AP: Oil Prices Rise After U.S. Terror Warning.

"Crude oil prices in New York surged above $40 a barrel Thursday for the first time in more than a month after the U.S. Department of Homeland Security signaled terrorists were scheming to disrupt U.S. elections."


Petroleum News: Thunder booms over Thunder Hawk prospect. Gulf of Mexico oil discovery uncovers 300 feet net pay in two high-quality zones.

"Thunder Hawk is located in Mississippi Canyon on the northeast fringe of the BP-operated Thunder Horse field complex, the largest discovery in Gulf history at a reported 1.4 billion barrels of recoverable oil." ...

"Both Thunder Hawk and Thunder Horse, in the Boarshead basin, are overlain by so-called ‘allocthonous’ salt bodies, which tend to distort seismic readings and make imaging difficult."

Business Wire: TGS-NOPEC Concludes Acquisition of NuTec Energy Assets.

Business Wire: I/O Signs Agreement with Trace for Seismic Acquisition Equipment.

"Trace Energy Services, headquartered in Calgary, has committed to purchase several thousand analog channels of System Four over a multi-year period."

PR Newswire: Seitel Announces Ticker Symbols for Common Stock.



Afrol News: Campaign to stop oil exploration in Western Sahara.

"In spite of the special status of Western Sahara ­ a non-self governing territory occupied by Morocco since 1975 and awaiting decolonisation ­ the Dutch company FUGRO N.V. agreed to carry out seismic surveys on behalf of the US company Kerr-McGee, which won a license from Morocco in 2001."

Business Wire: Statoil Awards WesternGeco Q-Marine 4D Projects in Norway.

"WesternGeco announced ... that Statoil ASA has awarded the company a contract for two Q-Marine 4D monitor seismic surveys over the Heidrun and Norne fields on the Halten Terrasse, Norwegian Sea. Both assignments repeat earlier Q-Marine surveys."

Walter Kessinger

Walter's Work Archive Walter's Home Page