Author: Kevin Olson

Carbon Negative

Chevron has announced it will work with a unit of oilfield services giant Schlumberger, as well as with Microsoft and private company Clean Energy Systems, to build a bioenergy plant with carbon capture technology that would produce carbon-negative power in Mendota, California. The bioenergy with carbon capture and sequestration (BECCS) project is planned to convert agricultural waste biomass, such as almond trees, into a renewable synthesis gas that will be mixed with oxygen in a combustor to generate electricity. This is Chevron’s newest project as a growing number of oil corporations look to develop carbon capture technology and other low-carbon energy solutions.

Revenue or Political View: How New Mexico is Navigating the Federal Moratorium

President Joe Biden’s executive order halting all leasing of Federal land for oil and gas activities indefinitely will be felt nationwide but nowhere else more so than New Mexico. Since energy production is the backbone of New Mexico’s economy, much of which sits on Federal land, no bigger impact of halting Federal oil and gas leasing would be felt than in New Mexico. The state has worked to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the sector long before Biden took office and now only time will tell the full impact of Joe Biden’s Federal lease ban and temporary drilling moratorium.

Rising Tensions

On the precipice of another historic meeting between the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and their allies (OPEC+), leaders will discuss the possibility of increasing oil production levels. Since many countries in the group are dependent on oil revenues, some are wary of another price crash while others are concerned about the wellbeing of their country. Nonetheless, tensions are high and sideline members including the United States have attempted to intervene.

Oklahoma’s Battle For Federal Lands

Shortly after being sworn into office, President Joe Biden signed an executive order to indefinitely ban lease sales for oil and gas development on all federal lands and offshore waters. Since energy production, namely oil and gas, is the backbone of Oklahoma’s economy, Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt went to bat with an executive order of his own in an attempt to overrule the order. While there is no certainty Oklahoma will be able to ignore or become exempt from Biden’s executive order, they can certainly let policy makers in Washington, D.C. know the problems that the new restrictions will cause.

Texas Deep Freeze

On Monday, all 254 of Texas’s counties were under a winter storm warning at the same time. As wind turbines froze in place, natural gas pipelines froze shut, refineries shut down, and more than 4 million barrels of crude oil production was shut in; the amount of power supplied to the grid fell rapidly just as demand was increasing as consumers and businesses turned up the heat and stayed inside to avoid the weather. Now, millions in Texas are still left without power from an electric grid that had not taken winterization measures as low temperatures continue to rock the Lone Star State that is woefully underprepared for such a rare event.

Dr. Copper – An Oil Price Indicator

In the modern age, copper is so essential across multiple industries that its price is widely seen as a proxy for modern development and economic vitality. Similarly, oil has long been the lifeblood of current economies by generating energy to make development possible. Since copper can be considered a barometer of global economic health, it is no surprise a correlation to oil and gas demand exists as a healthy, growing economy requires more and more energy. Unfortunately, an unexpected divergence has occurred since the beginning of the global pandemic. Luckily, there appears to be market energy building for a large commodity price upcycle in which crude closes the gap and corrects upward to its industrial cousin, copper.

Everyone Needs A Win

Everyone needs a win every now and again, especially when they have been battered for so long. That is exactly what happened this week when oil prices posted their longest “winning streak” in two years, gaining ground for eight straight days. Even though the world is beginning the slow and gradual transition to renewable energy, it seems markets have realized societies current reliance on fossil fuels.

Biden’s Energy Policy – Part Three: The Clean Energy Revolution And What It Means For The Global Energy Industry

President Joe Biden is using his presidential powers to make climate change a central issue of the new administration and is taking immediate action to prove his commitment to the environment. After Biden took executive action to tackle the climate crisis at home and abroad, create jobs, and restore scientific integrity across the federal government; he finished the structure of his clean energy policy by surrounding himself with like-minded, climate-forward individuals to lead the country towards carbon neutrality. He is not only focusing on climate change at the national level, but also on a global scale. His actions have put the climate crisis at the center of United States foreign policy and national security and utilize a whole-of-government approach to accomplish his climate goals. Only time will tell how much of Biden’s energy policy will be implemented during his tenure in the White House, but the process to create a unified global front for attacking the climate crisis is well underway.

End Of An Era

Early last year, the Trump administration’s Department of Energy celebrated a special birthday. “Happy Third Operating Anniversary, Petra Nova!” The release celebrated a Texas based power-plant successfully removing carbon dioxide from the plant’s emissions and safely storing them for three years. But the celebration was short lived as Petra Nova barely made it to its fourth birthday before being shuttered indefinitely in what may be one of the last gasps for carbon capture and storage technology in the U.S. While it is grim news for the aspiring technology, maybe Elon Musk can bring new vigor to CCS with his upcoming carbon capture competition.

Biden’s Energy Policy – Part Two: Laying the Groundwork for Climate Initiatives

Incoming United States President Joe Biden wasted no time putting the climate crisis back on the U.S. government agenda, proving to the world he meant business to become the “climate president”. With new executive orders detailing far-ranging plans to shift the U.S. away from fossil fuels in order to create millions of jobs in renewable energy while conserving vast swaths of public lands and water, it appears there is a new sheriff in town. But, Biden has taken office at an inflection point in U.S. energy policy, where fossil fuels still dominate transportation and electricity generation, even as they are starting to lose ground to both market forces and shifting public opinion. Now, even though the United States and the world face a profound climate crisis, Joe Biden needs to take his foot off the gas to implement small steps in order to tackle the climate crisis on a united front instead of waging war against fossil fuels.

Ex-Platform Spaceports

Most news headlines (including those at RARE PETRO) have focused on Joe Biden and his newly enacted Energy Policies, but nobody likes a broken record so let’s dive into something a little more bizarre, shall we? What do Elon Musk and Fossil Fuels all have in common? Well, a couple things now! Late last week SpaceX announced it had bought two former Valaris oil rigs to build floating launchpads for its Starship rocket, essentially building spaceports for future trips to Mars. Following up on that, Elon Musk sent out a Tweet to the Universe that he would award a $100 Million Prize to anyone who comes up with the “best carbon capture technology”. While many replied sarcastically, some have jumped aboard and started companies to fight climate change and maybe take home a hefty paycheck.

Biden’s Energy Policy – Part One

In his first 48 hours in office, the 46th President of the United States, Joseph Biden Jr. cranked out about 30 executive actions, 14 of which target a broad range of former President Trump’s executive mandates, focusing on themes such as climate change, clean energy, and decarbonization. The chasm between Biden’s agenda and Trump’s legacy is one of the widest in recent decades and nowhere is that contrast more pronounced than on climate change and the environment. Biden comes to power with a sense of urgency about climate change that is unmatched by any previous occupant of the White House, and he is installing people who share his views throughout the government. Biden’s plan for the future of energy in America sets the country down a new path – one aimed at transition and lasting change during his “Clean Energy Revolution – that will have reaching implications both domestically and abroad.

Out With The Old, In With The New

It was a big, and historic, week in this country as the 46th President of the United States, Joseph Robinette Biden Jr., was ushered into the White House. It was also a week that rocked the oil and gas industry. On his first day in office, Biden signed a series of executive orders that underscored his Clean Energy Revolution — rejoining the Paris Climate Accord; revoking approval of the Keystone XL oil pipeline from Canada; blocking drilling in the Alaskan National Wildlife Refuge; and telling agencies to immediately review dozens of Trump-era rules on science, the environment, and public health. In addition, on his second day in office, the Biden administration announced a 60-day suspension of new oil and gas leasing and drilling permits for U.S. lands and waters. Ironically, Biden’s cancellation of the Keystone XL project comes just days after the owners of the pipeline, TC Energy, announced their commitment to become the first pipeline to be fully powered by renewable energy; delivering affordable, reliable energy resources we all rely upon.