Stale Thoughts and Broken Links

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


Houston Chronicle: Chevron says role in Chad at risk.

"Chevron Corp. confirmed Tuesday that a tax dispute with the government of Chad has imperiled its involvement in a multibillion-dollar oil project."

WSJ (subscription): Oil-Rich Calgary Finds Boomtimes Have a Downside.

"As the front-office headquarters for Canada's oil and gas industry, Calgary is the gateway to one of the world's greatest petroleum troves: the tar sands of Alberta Province."


Houston Chronicle: Seitel receives offer from major shareholder.

"‘The offer was pretty low,’ said Randy Laufman, a research analyst with Imperial Capital in Beverly Hills, Calif."


Rhonda Duey, Hart's E&P: Would Mozart have made a good geophysicist?

"... even though I write about geophysics for a living, I actually know a lot more about music."


Dow Jones: Input/Output Gets $29 Million Order From Reservoir Exploration.

"Input/Output Inc. received a $29 million order from Reservoir Exploration Technology A/S, a marine geophysical company, for a seismic imaging system."

The New Nation, Bangladesh: Seismic survey summary sent to PM for decision.

"According to the recent letters issued by the three [International Oil Companies], many international companies would be reluctant to participate in the offshore bidding without data acquisition on the presence of hydrocarbons in the Bay. The government plan to conduct the seismic survey was dropped in April this year due to time constraints, sources said."

PR Newswire: Caspian Services, Inc. Announces Continued Growth in Geophysical Survey Activities.

"The Chagala block is located in the northeast sector of the Caspian Sea and sits directly south of and adjacent to the massive offshore Kashagan discovery and directly west of the equally large onshore Tengiz field. Veritas Caspian plans to acquire a total of 660 linear kilometers of 2D seismic data over the Chagala block this year. Data acquisition commenced on August 19, 2006 and is scheduled for completion by the end of the current work season."

Primezone: Petroleum Geo-Services ASA Sells Its Petrojarl Shareholding.

Alaska Journal of Commerce: Concern raised over effects of seismic exploration.

> Close to the top --

"The noise from air guns firing for the seismic tests will likely frighten whales in the area, unseen by observers, away from feeding areas, said Rick Steiner of the University of Alaska Fairbanks Sea Grant Program. At the source of the air gun blasts, ‘It sounds like a jet aircraft taking off,’ Steiner said."

> No it doesn't. I don't want to minimize valid concerns, but these misleading sound bites override any attempts at serious discussions. Shell, ConocoPhillips and GXT should be fighting for a retraction.


WSJ (subscription): Exxon's CEO Sees Oil-Price Pain.

"‘Prices at these levels are not healthy for economies anywhere,’ Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Rex Tillerson said, speaking to reporters at an oil industry conference in Stavanger, Norway."

PR Newswire: Paradigm Completes Acquisition of Earth Decision.

PR Newswire: Geokinetics Announces Improved Second Quarter.

"Geokinetics reported second quarter revenues of $34.4 million in 2006, compared to second quarter 2005 revenues of $13.4 million."


MMS: Western Gulf of Mexico Sale 200 Attracts $462.8 Million in Bids.

"This activity was led by interest in the Garden Banks and Keathley Canyon areas. In all, more than 50 percent of the tracts receiving bids in the Sale were in these two areas. Several companies were new first time bidders."

O&GJ: Contested GOM lease sale proves 'best in 9 years'.

"The Aug. 16 western Gulf of Mexico Lease Sale 200 was ‘the best in 9 years,’ said US Minerals Management Service officials, despite a federal judge's warning that pending court action by Louisiana state officials could overturn that sale."

Newfield Exploration: Results From Treasure Island Exploration Well.

"The well failed to reach its primary targets because of higher than expected pressure. The operator is preparing to temporarily abandon the well."

Sunday Business, London: Oil Companies Plan to Spend $2.4 Billion on North Sea Drilling.

"The continuing high oil price has brought North Sea spending back to levels last seen in the late-1980s, helping to extend the life of the aging basin."


Chicago Tribune: Oil crisis -- It's only just begun.

"One man who keeps Michelle Vargo's gas-guzzling Suburban rolling doesn't have an oil worker's rough hands. He sits in a red granite skyscraper in Houston.

"‘No question, we're facing a whole new game,’ said Jeff Rutledge, a sandy-haired New Orleans native and the senior geophysicist for Marathon. ‘Sure, there's a lot of resources still out there, but they're getting riskier to invest in, much harder to find and more expensive to reach.’"

Canadian seismic companines don't seem to be doing quite as well as everyone else --

Canadian Business Online: Pulse Data loses $5.1 million in Q2.

Press Release: Kelman Announces First Half 2006 Results.

"Kelman Technologies Inc today announced a net earnings before income tax of $182 thousand for the second quarter of 2006 compared to a loss of $327 thousand for the comparable period in 2005."

AME Info: BGP conducts technical seminar on seismic technology.

"BGP has completed three years seismic operation experience in Oman, and has more than ten years experience in Middle East."

Ottoman Energy: Veritas Tapped for Marantao Survey.

"... a 400 km seismic program over the Marantao Prospect in its S.W. Palawan deep-water block...."


Associated Press: Colombian rebels kidnap 3 oil workers.

"Colombian rebels kidnapped two engineers and a helicopter pilot who were part of a seismographic oil exploration crew, an official said Thursday."

PR Newswire: I/O Reports Strong Second Quarter 2006 Results.

"Bob Peebler, I/O's President and Chief Executive Officer, said, ‘We had an exceptionally strong quarter, reflecting improvement in all of our business units and a strong industry environment.’"

PR Newswire: Seitel Announces 2006 Second Quarter Results.

"... revenue of $48.5 million .... This is the seventh consecutive quarter of year-on-year growth in cash resales as oil and gas activity in North America remained strong."

Press Release: Fugro ends first half year of 2006 with record profit.

"Revenue for the first half of 2006 increases by 25.9% to EUR 652.4 million." ...

"The expansion and modernisation of the seismic fleet with five vessels (of which are four new ones) in the period 2006-2008 is fixed; two multi-purpose vessels (Fugro Saltire and Fugro Synergy) will broaden the fleet further."

Reuters: Global Geophysical Services Files for IPO.

"Global Geophysical Services Inc., a seismic data acquisition services provider, on Thursday said it may sell as much as $145 million in common stock in an initial public offering.."

Oil Online: Sercel invests in new 4D seismic company.

"Reservoir Imaging Ltd (RIL), the newly formed 4D seismic software services consultancy based in Edinburgh Scotland, has announced that Sercel has purchased a minority stake in the company."


Cambridge Energy Research Associates: World Oil & Liquids Production Capacity to Grow Significantly.

"Global oil and liquids supply capacity could increase as much as 25% by 2015, with unconventional sources, including gas-related liquids and extra-heavy oils accounting for a major proportion of net capacity growth, according to Cambridge Energy Research Associates' (CERA) July, 2006 benchmark field-by-field analysis of worldwide hydrocarbon liquids production capacity."

Bloomberg News: Oil output slips in Mexico.

"Crude oil output at Cantarell fell faster than expected in June to a four-year low, according to data from Mexico's Energy Ministry.... The field, which accounts for about half of Mexico's crude production, yielded more than 1.7 million barrels a day in June, the most recent month for which information is available. "


WSJ (subscription): Oil Price Surges As BP Shuts Off Big Alaskan Field.

"Critics say the oil companies have underinvested in new production facilities, while older ones deteriorate as companies emphasize cost controls over maintenance. But industry executives have complained they have often been stymied in putting in more infrastructure, such as new refineries, by intense public opposition."


AP: BP -- Pipeline closing may last for months.

"Once complete, the shutdown will cut production by 400,000 barrels a day, about 2.6 percent of [U.S.] supply including imports, according to data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration."

Houston Business Journal: Plains E&P to sell non-strategic properties for $865M.

"Plains Exploration & Production Co. has agreed to sell non-strategic oil and gas properties, located primarily in California and Texas, to subsidiaries of Occidental Petroleum Corp. for $865 million."


WSJ (subscription): BP to Shut an Alaska Oil Field Amid Pipeline Flaw, Small Leak.

"The shutdown, disclosed last night and expected to occur over several days, will result in curtailment of an estimated 400,000 barrels a day of oil, almost half the total daily production from fields on Alaska's North Slope."


Engineer Live: Oil industry set to study the sounds it makes at sea.

"The International Association of Oil & Gas Producers (OGP) has announced the start of a global industry programme to assess the effect of operational sounds on marine life, with an initial focus on marine mammals and fish." ...

"Founder participants in the new programme are BG Group, BP, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, ExxonMobil, the International Association of Geophysical Contractors (IAGC), Shell, Statoil and Total."

PR Newswire: Geokinetics Announces New $6 Million Lease Agreement.

"The new lease facility will allow the Company to complete the acquisition of an additional 5,000 channels of seismic acquisition equipment and field a new 3D seismic acquisition crew."

Borneo Bulletin: Brunei Shell Petroleum to conduct new hi-res 3D marine seismic survey.

WSJ (subscription): As Oil Prices Rise, Investors Pour Into Risky Energy Plays.

"Bullish investors say this isn't another dot-com bubble. The energy industry is built on hard assets."

> Five sentences later --

"One popular [investment] trend: management teams with virtually no assets other than big and costly ideas."


WSJ (subscription): As Global Oil Demand Tightens, A Big Producer Has Own Agenda.

"Since Mr. Chávez took power in 1999, he has become PDVSA's de facto CEO, steering the oil company into political, economic and philanthropic ventures that have distracted it from its core business of finding and producing more oil. The consequences for PDVSA are stark: Output has fallen to an estimated 1.6 million barrels a day from nearly 3 million barrels in 1998."

PR Newswire: Dawson Geophysical Company Reports Third Quarter Results With Twelve Crews Operating.

"... revenues of $41,524,000 for the quarter.... Net income of $4,241,000...."

Walter Kessinger

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