Bakken Production Down plus IEA Predictions

The Bakken and North Dakota production data is in.

ND & Bakken

Bakken production was down 19,502 bpd in August while all North Dakota was down 20,552 bpd.

ND & Bakkwn Amplified

Here is an amplified chart of Bakken and all North Dakota production.

ND & Bakken BPW

Bakken barrels per well per day is now 112 while all North Dakota gets 94 barrels per well per day.

North Dakota Change in BPD

This chart shows the monthly change in North Dakota production. It is likely that by next month the 12 month average change in production will be negative.

Bakken wells producing increased by 69 and ND wells producing increased by 65.

From the Director’s Cut

July Permitting: 233 drilling and 0 seismic
Aug Permitting: 153 drilling and 1 seismic
Sep Permitting: 154 drilling and 1 seismic

July Sweet Crude Price1 = $39.41/barrel
Aug Sweet Crude Price = $29.52/barrel
Sep Sweet Crude Price = $31.17/barrel
Today’s Sweet Crude Price = $35.00/barrel
(low-point since Bakken play began was $22.00 in Dec 2008)
(all-time high was $136.29 7/3/2008)

July rig count 73
Aug rig count 74
Sep rig count 71
Today’s rig count is 67
(in November 2009 it was 63)(all-time high was 218 on 5/29/2012)

Comments: The drilling rig count increased 1 from July to August, decreased 3 from August to September, and dropped 4 more this month. Operators are now committed to running fewer rigs than their planned 2015 minimum as drill times and efficiencies continue to improve and oil prices continue to fall. This has resulted in a current active drilling rig count of 10 to 15 rigs below what operators indicated would be their 2015 average if oil price remained below $65/barrel. The number of well completions fell from 119(final) in July to 115(preliminary) in August. Oil price weakness now anticipated to last well into next year is the main reason for the continued slow-down. There was one significant precipitation event in the Minot area, 6 days with wind speeds in excess of 35 mph (too high for completion work), and no days with temperatures below -10F.
Over 98% of drilling now targets the Bakken and Three Forks formations. At the end of August there were an estimated 993 wells2 waiting on completion services, 79 more than at the end of July.

The drop in oil price associated with anticipation of lifting sanctions on Iran and a weaker economy in China is leading to further cuts in the drilling rig count. Utilization rate for rigs capable of 20,000+ feet is about 40% and for shallow well rigs (7,000 feet or less) about 20%.

Drilling permit activity decreased sharply from July to August but stabilized from August to September as operators continued to position themselves for low 2016 price scenarios. Operators already have a significant permit inventory should a return to the drilling price point occur in the next 12 months.

Highlights of IEA Oil Market Report had an interesting chart this month.

IEA Forecasts

This is a chart of nine different demand growth and production forecasts, sorted left to right on the amount of shortfall in Non-OPEC production. Or, to put it another way, it is sorted on the amount OPEC will have to increase production to keep supply and demand in balance.

The IEA says demand will increase by 1.2 mb/d while Non-OPEC supply falls by .5 mb/d meaning the “call on OPEC” will be to increase production by 1.7 mb/d. The most optimistic prediction says the “call on OPEC” will be only 1.2 mb/d while the most pessimistic prediction says the “call on OPEC” will be 2.3 mb/d.

If the article below has any validity then the decline in Non-OPEC production will be a whole lot more than any of the nine prognosticators are predicting.

Offshore oil output to plunge as producers scrap field upgrades

(Reuters) – Global offshore oil production in ageing fields will fall by 10 percent next year as producers abandon field upgrades at the fastest rate in 30 years, in the first clear sign of output cuts outside the U.S. shale industry, exclusive data shows.

A drop in oil prices to half the level of a year ago has forced producers to slash spending and scrap mega projects that can take up to a decade to develop, but they are also taking less visible steps to cut investment in existing fields that will have an immediate impact on global supplies.

There have been few signs of how cost cuts of around $180 billion will impact near-term production until now. They could erode the glut that has forced down prices, and help balance global production and demand by the middle of next year or earlier, Oslo-based oil consultancy Rystad Energy said.

Data provided exclusively to Reuters by Rystad show a sharp decline in investment to upgrade mature offshore oil fields in order to arrest their natural decline, in what is known as infill drilling.

In three major offshore basins — the Gulf of Mexico, Southeast Asia and Brazil — infill drilling dropped by 60 percent between January and July this year compared with the same period last year, according to the Rystad Oil Market Trend Report, whose data is based on company data and regulatory filings.

The drop dramatically exceeds previous downturns in infill drilling going back to 1986, the data shows.

For example, according to the data, in the Gulf of Mexico, infill drilling on mature wells dropped from 149 wells between January and July 2014 to a total of 61 wells during the same period this year.

Based on this trend, Rystad Energy estimates that global offshore oil production in mature field will decline next year by 1.5 million barrels per day (bpd), or 10 percent, to 13.5 million bpd from 15 million bpd in 2015.


If you would like to be notified when a new post is published then please email me at DarwinianOne at

This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

678 Responses to Bakken Production Down plus IEA Predictions

  1. MarbleZeppelin says:

    Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: North Dakota
    So you think you know what’s been going on in North Dakota. Well listen up, John Oliver gives a funny yet very informative show on North Dakota and oil production.

    • Paul Helvik says:

      This is just another one of the typical liberal smear and lie campaigns to try and push an anti-fossil fuel agenda on us all.

      Where leftists like Oliver and Democrats here in North Dakota see a too-cozy relationship between the state’s Republican leadership and the oil and gas industry, I think a majority of North Dakota voters see a common sense relationship that’s based more on getting the right outcome than exercising ideological vendettas.

      If North Dakotans, who actually live here amid the oil and gas activity, saw things the way Oliver does then Democrat Ryan Taylor would be governor right now and Democrats would likely control the state Legislature. But they don’t, because they do actually live here, and they aren’t seeing oil and gas activity in the state through the lens of the New York Times.

      • MarbleZeppelin says:

        I thought Oliver went pretty easy on them.

      • Boomer II says:

        This is just another one of the typical liberal smear and lie campaigns to try and push an anti-fossil fuel agenda on us all.

        Don’t you have geology working against you?

        • Paul Helvik says:

          You know very well there’s a 100+ year supply of oil in the Bakken. The state’s own projections show a minimum of 100,000 bpd still being produced by the year 2100.

          Bruce Oksol stated this well earlier today.

          • shallow sand says:

            Wonder what oil prices and OPEX is projected to be in 2100?

            Looks like that will be somewhere between 1-5 bopd per well. From a 20,000+ well bore, will need an incredibly high price to make that work. LOL/sarc.

            On a serious note, Bakken was a large factor in one of the most trying times in the history of the US oil industry. No offense to those still working on new wells, but from Enno’s chart below, it would have been helpful had well completions ceased entirely in 2015.

          • Boomer II says:

            You know very well there’s a 100+ year supply of oil in the Bakken. The state’s own projections show a minimum of 100,000 bpd still being produced by the year 2100.

            No, I don’t know that.

            And ironically, if that is the message you want to send, then that probably reinforces the idea that there is a glut of oil, now and in the future, which will keep prices low, which will make it harder for gas and oil companies to make a profit.

          • Don Wharton says:

            David Hughes in his Drilling Deeper report projected a near term peak for the Bakken and production dropping below 100,000 bpd around 2033.

          • The term “100 year supply” is incorrect. You could say “the Bakken/Three Forks” will be producing oil 100 years from now”.

            Question: how many wells do you think will be required to produce 100,000 BOPD in 2115?

            • Dennis Coyne says:

              Hi Fernando,

              Probably the average well output will be about 25 b/d at that point (maybe less) so about 4000 wells if that guess is correct, if it’s an average of 10 b/d, it would be 10,000 wells. Of course 100 kb/d is a drop in the bucket if demand remains at 18,000 kb/d as it is at present in the US.

      • Fred Magyar says:

        This is just another one of the typical liberal smear and lie campaigns to try and push an anti-fossil fuel agenda on us all.

        Paul, Oliver is an entertainer and what he does, is known comedy or political satire… Though to be honest, I sometimes laugh harder when I watch FAUX News. Compared to them, Oliver is just a rank amateur.

        Now, from a purely business perspective, how’s that pro-fossil fuel agenda working out for North Dakotans? You want to read something funny? Check this out from Forbes!

        Oil Bust? Bah — North Dakota Is Still Poised To Thrive

        In the coming years, other industries may help pick up the slack from energy. One prime candidate is aerospace, where North Dakota is touting itself as the “Silicon Valley of drones,” an outgrowth of the conversion of the Grand Forks Airforce Base from launching bombers and tankers to drones. The country’s first drone-only business park is being built on an unused portion of the base. Other industries on the upswing include biomedicine and wind turbine parts.

        Now that’s what I would normally call funny but building the country’s first drone-only business park is something I’d be willing to actually invest in. Though not for surveillance or military usage… That’s not where the future lies! The fossil fueled BAU paradigm has outlived it’s usefulness we have to get beyond it.

        No, seriously, I really like disruptive technologies like this! BTW, Big Data is about to become HUGE DATA. You might consider investing in that as well. If you want to frame all of this as an anti-fossil fuel agenda, I’d say you are stuck in the past. Of course we still need oil and will continue extracting for a very long time to come but not in the same way as we have done till now. A culture that promotes ICE Pickups and guns is a stupid culture and I say good riddance! Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with any political party either on the right or the left and I think that is a completely useless framing.

        At his lab at the University of Pennsylvania, Vijay Kumar and his team have created autonomous aerial robots inspired by honeybees. Their latest breakthrough: Precision Farming, in which swarms of robots map, reconstruct and analyze every plant and piece of fruit in an orchard, providing vital information to farmers that can help improve yields and make water management smarter.

        • Glenn Stehle says:


          I was born and raised in Midland, Texas, in the heart of the Permian Basin. So I have suffered through any number of boom and bust cycles associated with the upstream oil and gas industry.

          What I saw was that the Permian Basin was unable to escape the ravages of the Dutch Disease, and I suspect North Dakota will fare no better.

        • MarbleZeppelin says:

          Yes Fred, you brought up a topic I have been thinking about for a long time. Robotic farming. Run it on solar energy.

          • Fred Magyar says:

            Actually that is something I was wondering about. Set up solar powered charging stations with battery back up for the robots and have them fly there to recharge themselves as needed. I don’t think that would be too hard to do given what those swarming robots can already do. All they have to do now is figure a way for them to make honey 🙂

            • islandboy says:

              Actually, I’m looking forward to a version of your self charging, autonomous drones configured with motion sensors in the field and high res cameras, to do security duty at my homestead out in the rural parts of my island. It would be nice to be able to just take a bunch of pictures or, better yet, videos to the local police station when stuff (produce) goes missing!

            • MarbleZeppelin says:

              I was thinking more of ground based robots. Have the larger ones carry smaller ones to disperse out to work areas. Fixed solar charging stations and have the bots come back their for energy. Of course flying ones would be great too for pollination and survey work as well as pest reduction.

            • Techsan says:

              We already have these flying robots in Texas.

              We call them “birds”.

              • MarbleZeppelin says:

                Around here we call them bees, but I guess everything is bigger in Texas.

  2. Dennis Coyne says:

    Hi Ron,

    As always it is difficult to predict the future changes in oil output. Output will decrease, but both OPEC and the article you cite at the end of the posts suggest mid-2016 when supply and demand will balance (assuming level OPEC output).

    The cuts in megaprojects will have the following effect (from your post):

    They could erode the glut that has forced down prices, and help balance global production and demand by the middle of next year or earlier, Oslo-based oil consultancy Rystad Energy said.

    If it is earlier than mid-2016 as suggested above, then oil prices start to rise earlier, maybe during the second quarter of 2016. There might be a temporary dip in output and then LTO output will ramp up in response to higher oil prices.

    • Arceus says:

      By 2020, China’s annual oil demand is likely to reach 608 million tons. China’s need for natural gas will possibly climb to 300 billion metric tons per year by 2020. This is according to an unnamed Chinese official at the 2015 China Petroleum and Chemical International Conference today.

      In 2014, China’s oil consumption was 516 million tons (growth of 3.3 % from the previous year) according to a report published by the CNPC Economic and Technology Research Institute. According to the think tank of China National Petroleum Corp, the nation’s top oil and gas producer, oil demand will grow 3 percent year-on-year to 534 million metric tons in 2015.

  3. AlexS says:

    FACTBOX-Loan resets at U.S. shale oil and gas companies

    Oct 13. U.S. energy companies that hold nearly a third of the industry’s total reserve-based loans have so far reported only a 1.4 percent net fall in credit lines.
    This could be a sign that banks are relaxing covenants to avoid technical defaults, while underscoring the successful steps taken by the energy companies to keep credit lines secure.
    Banks typically review credit lines twice a year for smaller oil and gas companies with loans tied to reserves.
    Mainly small independents are subject to semi-annual redeterminations. Big companies with investment grade ratings, such as EOG Resources and Apache Corp, do not normally face redeterminations as they have longer-term credits unsecured by reserves, according to filings.

    • Toolpush says:

      Queue Watcher, and his moving the goal posts to keep everyone solvent!

      • shallow sand says:

        Most news continues to be very bearish IMO. Will be a very long slog for all oil producers.

        Again, only near term relief (prior to 2017) IMO is OPEC cut. Everyone convinced it will not happen. Hard to say. KSA 2015 projected budget deficit on proportional basis equivalent to US having an annual deficit of $3.5 trillion, which is pretty bad. But, KSA sees this a life and death, so hard to say. OTOH, OPEC has not waited over 18 months to cut from beginning of collapse, re 1986, 1999 and 2008.

        Zombie shalers continue to drill and had a huge share price spike, despite no real oil price recovery. Very interesting. Most will have long term debt of more than 65% of SEC PDP PV10 at year end.

      • Watcher says:

        Counted the text:

        5 of the 6 upward resets of loans were pre 1 Oct announcements

        Of the 10 down resets there were 5 that were post 1 Oct announcements.

        Of the 15 NoChange resets there were all 15 Pre 1 Oct (there was one that was exactly 1 Oct.)

        These guys may have asked banks to redo their resets pre Oct. Or post 1 Oct resets just haven’t been reported yet.

        • HR says:

          Eighty or ninety percent of shale oil guys revenue going towards debt or maybe even just interest on the debt. WSJ article saying shale oil guys have cut all budget areas and are now eyeing across the board payroll cuts instead of more layoffs. And their loan ratios are left as is? Seriously?

          This is sure looking like yet another bankster scam. Everything they touch turns to shit.

          • Watcher says:

            Not really the read.

            When you have to have it, and you do have to have it, you’ll do anything to get it.

            • HR says:

              I didn’t explain it well, maybe the banksters are doing this at the behest of their partners, the federales. Which is the worst possible scenario for us.

              • Watcher says:

                No, too many people in on a big secret. There is none. The banks probably agreed to reset pre Oct 1 revaluation of reserves, to buy time.

          • BC says:

            HR, rarely has there been a bubble in history without banks jumping in and lending at an unsustainable rate to GDP that inevitably and mathematically results in debt and debt service exceeding profits, wages, and gov’t receipts, prompting a credit market/banking/financial crisis that results in a recession and bear markets for equities and corporate bonds.

            US banks’ growth of commercial and industrial loans to the energy and energy-related transport sectors is similar to that which occurred for the unreal estate bubble in 2004-07.

            But now there are bubbles in stocks, corporate bonds, unreal estate, trophy properties, collectibles, vintage and high-end vanity vehicles, sports franchises, margin debt, derivatives leverage, debt to GDP, rents to income, CEO compensation, film budgets, population, immigration, resource consumption per capita, and who knows what else.

            The larger the credit/debt/lending bubble as a share of wages and GDP, the larger the bust and financial and economic dislocation that follows.

            To that point, current US total debt and non-financial corporate debt to wages and GDP is at the level of 1929-30 and Japan in 1989-94.

            The scale and scope of the emerging potential global debt-deflationary wipeout and collapse is unprecedented in world history.

            • shallow sand says:

              BC. Sure do not like to read the end of your post.

              Never get out of my mind grandparents talking about the Great Depression. One thing that stuck with me was a quote, something like, “There just was not any money, no one had any, just like all the money disappeared.”.

              Was doing some reading this weekend and noted that during the Great Depression, the discovery of the East Texas oilfield crashed oil prices to extreme lows.

              Is it possible that the discovery of the East Texas field exacerbated the effects of the Great Depression by driving oil prices so low it sucked even more money out of the system?

              Have read that a quick switch over from fossil fuels to alternatives could crash the world economy due to the large part of same fossil fuels make up.

              Kind of a chicken and egg issue, but does the over supply of commodities cause deflation? For example, the 70 million retirees who will see no COLA this year, directly due to the oil price crash.

              Sorry for my naive comments. Seems like the low oil prices should have helped world economies. Not seeing that.

              • “One thing that stuck with me was a quote, something like, ‘There just was not any money, no one had any, just like all the money disappeared.’.” ~ shallow sand

                “One way to promote local [‘glocal/trans-local’] spending is to introduce a local [‘glocal/trans-local’/ethics-based?] currency… Eventually, in a period of sufficient upheaval, a money monopoly may be impossible to sustain, then local currencies would be freer to operate… Any initiative which reduces our dependence on national currency in circulation is going to be useful in this regard… Holmgren points out that holding cash under one’s own control, outside of the banking system can greatly increase resilience by reducing dependency on the solvency of middle men. This is very much in accordance with our position at TAE [The Automatic Earth], as cash is king in a period of deflation…” ~ Nicole Foss (my parentheses/emphasis)

                “Alternative currencies and economies can insulate their users from currency-manipulations and bad economies and their economic fluctuations, and help influence, facilitate and encourage transitions to new particular forms and locales of ethical trade, economic associations and ways-of-life, and provide hedges, forms of resilience, solidarity and resistance…” ~ Me, from the Permaea Manifesto

                • Jef says:

                  As a producer who has accepted local currency at times, the problem is I can’t pay any of my main expenses with it. Not my mortgage or equipment payments, not my lease payments, not my main inputs cost, not my utilities…

                  • I presume you don’t live in an ecovillage, and even if you did, the dystem would still have you sort of by the balls, yes? I mean, we’re not just talking about currency, Jef.

                    Part of the idea behind Permaea, incidentally, is to create a completely new society, kind of like a cancer of the state that grows slowly from within it, creates its own safety-nets from it and leverages its operations until it just dies, without violence or bloodshed, simply from the little participation that’s left in it.

                    One catch is how do we get Permaea to go ‘viral’? The main proposal, aside from an advertising/marketing campaign (one of the first/main ones of which I already have in mind, and you can get a hint of it in the graphics of people holding Pangaea) is we do it by leveraging ‘off the shelf parts’– groups that are already averse to the state, and there are plenty, obviously. I argue that Permaea already exists, just that those groups are simply not working together. Which really annoys me. LOL

                  • Ralph says:

                    The main proposal, aside from an advertising/marketing campaign (one of the first/main ones of which I already have in mind, and you can get a hint of it in the graphics of people holding Pangaea) is we do it by leveraging ‘off the shelf parts’– groups that are already averse to the state, and there are plenty, obviously

                    This is the plan behind the Transition Town movement.

                  • Caelan MacIntyre says:

                    Transition (TT) and permaculture are part of Permaea but both movements don’t seem to be moving fast enough/making sufficient headway or making an outright effort at getting other groups together. Maybe Transition has changed strategy since I looked, but last I did it seems it’s strategy was to transition towns(/cities), rather than to achieve solidarity and cooperation (in a permaculture/TT capacity) with state-averse people/groups.

                    And to quote the Permaea manifesto:

                    “Obviously it’s past time for a rapid paradigm-shift, an inflection point, but of the right kind(s). Question is, when, how? Transition Towns is all but crickets over here in Ottawa and Halifax, respectively, and apparently in the USA as well; Occupy has fizzled, fragmented and/or gone underground; we have yet to hear of any Deep Green Resistance resistance; David Holmgren, in writing about the consideration of a kind of ‘crash on demand’, mentions in that article that, ‘I am more than ready to acknowledge that ‘our’ collective efforts at positive environmentalism during and since the 1970s have so far failed to catalyse the necessary changes in society…’; and Michael C. Ruppert, of the 2009 documentary, Collapse and formerly the host of the Progressive Radio Network show, The Lifeboat Hour, recently fatally shot himself. (Could he have, instead, created an ecovillage with some of his engaged audience, I wonder, or did he see anything like that as a pointless endeavor, given what he knew? In any case, he often remarked that, if you don’t change how money works, you change nothing… And of course, how money works is encoded and enforced by this dystem’s own ‘proprietary black-boxed rulebook’.)”

                    The likes of Petro, BC or Watcher may have managed to, say, crack and peer into some or much of this ‘proprietary black-boxed rulebook’, but the problem is that it’s essentially ‘proprietary black-boxed’ and yet paid for by the ‘relatively-ignorant-about-it public-hostages-cum-parasite-hosts’.

                    Kid: “Hey Dad, what’s the velocity of money?”
                    Cae-Dad: “Go ask your mother.”
                    Kid: ” 🙁 ”
                    Cae-Dad: “Ya; 🙁 “

              • BC says:

                shallow sand (SS): “Seems like the low oil prices should have helped world economies. Not seeing that.”

                Peak Oil; population overshoot and resource depletion per capita; too much debt to wages, GDP, and gov’t receipts; falling available net oil exports (oil producers consumer more of their production); demographic drag effects; extreme inequality; soaring health care costs (twice the rate of GDP) and rents in the US; asset bubble (some of which are bursting) causing disproportionate flows from firms, households, and gov’ts to the financial sector (“hyper-financialization”); a record low for labor share of GDP, regressive payroll taxes, and weak wage growth are restraining investment and productivity; high energy cost of energy extraction and increasing energy consumption to produce lower-quality, costlier crude substitutes; and fiscal constraints/”austerity” in most countries.

                These factors are combining for a cumulative global drag effect that is manifesting secular stagnation, a liquidity trap, and deflation.

                There is no way out but debt forgiveness and an increase in labor share of GDP. But hyper-financialization, QEternity, and unprecedented asset bubbles have resulted in the asset markets becoming “the economy”. Another bear market in equities, bonds, and unreal estate will hit the economy as in 2007-10, which is why US central banksters are so terrified to raise the reserve rate.

                And globalization of the labor market and accelerating automation of paid employment (Big Data analytics, AI, robotics, bioinformatics, biometrics, nano-electronic sensors, telepresence, etc.) and elimination of purchasing power, including increasingly in the service sector hereafter, will likely cause labor share to continue to persist at the lows of the Great Depression.

                • Caelan MacIntyre says:

                  I am leisurely-mulling over your comment (the issues surrounding it) here at a Starbucks coffeehouse in downtown Halifax at Queen and Spring Garden over a smuggled-in home-cold-milk-brewed green-tea ‘latte’ and purchased 2-cookie package of Walker’s Scottish shortbread cookies.
                  I used to have their green tea lattes with extra Japan-sourced pre-sweetened matcha green tea powder until Fukushima blew up.
                  The green tea I am drinking now is sourced from China, but am unsure about its safety either. So I guess if the radiation doesn’t get me, other toxins will.
                  Of course there are some plants in our local forests that one can make teas with, and I have done this myself. The link is to my very first and simple attempt with wintergreen, and I have experimented with other plants, including sumac, sweetfern, mint, barberry, and even spruce… Hopefully nothing nuclear blows up nearby, (as if we need the energy.)

                  I am waiting for a friend and if she shows, I will reward her with one of the cookies. She has until 10pm, after which time as her cookie will become mine again. In fact, I’ll email her after I send this along to let her know that this is the case.

                  If you go on Google Street View to view our location, just wave into your web-/phone-cam so we know it’s you and we’ll wave back.

                  “Be well” ~ Petro

            • Boomer II says:

              But now there are bubbles in stocks, corporate bonds, unreal estate, trophy properties, collectibles, vintage and high-end vanity vehicles, sports franchises, margin debt, derivatives leverage, debt to GDP, rents to income, CEO compensation, film budgets, population, immigration, resource consumption per capita, and who knows what else.

              So, we’re saying the FED has rigged the system. But do all the wealthy who are buying the real estate, stocks, art, etc. know everything could collapse?

              Surely there are people who are benefiting now who are also aware that they are in bubble territory. Or is everyone clueless, including the FED?

              • Cracker says:


                I think most know, but the uncertainty of timing and the drive for perpetual growth in wealth requires investing in something, so they keep on, hoping to game the system.

                It is all they know to do. Besides, what else can you do with electronic wealth? Other than the obvious strategy of converting it into something physical…


              • Caelan MacIntyre says:

                They know, but maybe just have yet to pass through all the 5 Stages of Grief until they get to ‘Acceptance’.
                The research behind the 5 Stages of Grief, however, may not have taken account of the possible skew toward higher levels of ‘sociopsychopathology’ within certain populations. So, for example, we may, as a culture, be in more trouble than even some of us here suspect if the last stage, Acceptance, simply doesn’t arrive for some.

              • BC says:

                Boomer II, not clueless but captive to a kind of self-satisfied inertia of affluence and decadence. The top 0.001-1% have never had it so good in the history of the world. To them, the system is working perfectly and they are deserving of it because of their merit. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it; and if it does break, as it did in 1929-33, 1937-41, and 2008-09, print trillions in reserves and net financial flows to the top 0.001-1% to fix it. No problem.

                The Fed’s job is to run political cover for the TBTE banks’ license to steal. So, the Fedsters are there to maintain the credibility and legitimacy of the rentier-socialist bankster oligarchic caste’s desires, and the wealth, status, privilege, and power of the top 0.001% Power Elite benefactors.

                Financial bubbles since the 2000s are a kind of de facto monetary policy of the hyper-financialized rentier-socialist corporate-state, which for the top 0.001-1% is like a gov’t-sponsored and -protected slush fund and money for nothing (but the chicks are never free).

            • HR says:

              Bravo gentlemen, I applaud and accept your observations. I always expect the worst from the east coast cartel as they will do anything to maintain their wealth and power.
              WTI price is still some major miserable shit though.
              BC, glad to see that someone else sees all the bubbles that have been blown up instead of allowing the economy to run its natural course back in 08. I still say that the bond market is on the brink and all of the massive government debt is at the edge of the precipice.

              • BC says:

                HR, thanks, but had the economy been permitted to run its deflationary course with the MASSIVE debt to wages and GDP, assuming the Fed had not printed to permit primary dealers to fund the US Treasury, the US nominal GDP would be about 20-25% smaller and the U rate at a similar level.

                But what we will get (are getting) instead is a slow-motion depression that will reduce growth in real terms per capita that otherwise would have occurred about the same as the 1929-33 and 1937-41 deflationary episodes, and the cumulative loss of real GDP per capita in Japan since 1989 to date.

  4. BC says:

    If anyone is curious why the price of oil and commodities crashed beginning about a year ago, the recession-like contraction in the US$-adjusted acceleration of “money” velocity tells the tale.

    And the tale is confirmed by the data at the links above.

    The world is experiencing the onset of another deflationary recession, and the acceleration of “money” velocity is contracting YoY as occurred in 2008, 2001, and the early 1980s.

    The historical parallels are Japan in the early 2000s, the US in the late 1930s, and the US and world in the 1890s.

    Economic history, i.e., the Long Wave, is rhyming yet again . . .

    • SRSrocco says:


      Using the REAR VIEW MIRROR to forecast future cycles works right up until the point the U.S. Dollar and U.S. Treasury Market go down the toilet and into the cesspool. I don’t believe it will take 5-10 years to flush these turds down the JOHNNY, rather it’s more like 1-3 years.

      The Fed never planned on selling or liquidating its $4.5 trillion portfolio of MBS or Treasuries. This was stated in their recently released 2009 Fed Minutes. John Titus explains this in excellent detail in his new video: THE FED AUDIT SHOCKER: They Came From Planet Klepto

      Titus shows that the FED paid the banks top Dollar for their worthless MBS – Mortgage Backed Securities. In many cases the Fed paid the banks $1.05 per dollar of MBS. Before the Fed started buying MBS, Morgan Stanley was dumping their MBS for 5 cents on the Dollar in 2008.

      Regardless, the Banks can thank the Fed for $1.7 trillion of their excess reserves as it purchased $1.7 trillion of the Banks’ worthless MBS.

      Titus says the real corruption is in the UNDER-REPORTED AMOUNT OF TREASURIES on the Fed’s balance sheet. He says it’s much more than the $2.4 trillion they have reported. He plans on doing another video showing how much U.S. Treasuries the Fed really should have on their balance sheet.

      The collapse of the U.S. Dollar and U.S. Treasury market will wake up the 95% of Americans who continue to believe the propaganda put out by the MSM. This should also do wonders for the U.S. Shale Oil Industry.


    • Petro says:

      “…The world is experiencing the onset of another deflationary recession, and the acceleration of “money” velocity is contracting YoY as occurred in 2008, 2001, and the early 1980s….”


      A): money velocity ITSELF is contracting – not its “acceleration” (to use your words).

      B): velocity deceleration in 2001 and 2008 is very different from that of early ’80s. That one happend as consequence of “crushing” interest rates Volker’s FED implemented to control inflation/stagflation.
      The recent one (and we still have not recovered (and will not recover!) from the 2008-2009 one….yet!) is a debt/deflation story (akin to 1930s) A war is coming to “correct” this one.
      And, for we are have reached limits/peaks on everything: from energy to debt; from fantasy football to trump/hillary – not even war will correct the current debt/deflation/death spiral.

      be well,


      • Glenn Stehle says:


        I’m throwing my hat in with you on this one.

        There seems to be a consensus in Washington that the world capitalist system can be given a new lease on life with another round of events similar to the Great Depression and WWII. As you put it in your comment below: “The great ’50 and ’60s came after the 1930s and the WWII.” But as you conclude, “not this time! This time is indeed different!”

        The world capitalist system requires at least two things to continue functioning:

        1) Abundant and cheap-to-produce natural resources, and

        2) A metropole and a perifery.

        The natural resources required for another round of growth, like that which followed WWII, are simply not existent this time around, neither in the metropole nor in the perfiery.

        The Green Utopians believe they have found salvation in renewables. I find the liklihood of this extremely small.

        I suppose, however, that there’s always the possiblity of a “black swan” on the upside. Humanity, after all, could win the Mega Millions!

        • Petro says:

          Well said, Glenn!

          Be well,


        • Petro says:

          Well said, Glenn!

          Be well.

        • oltru says:


        • Petro says:

          For some reason my comment is not posting…

        • -Petro says:

          “I suppose, however, that there’s always the possiblity of a “black swan” on the upside. Humanity, after all, could win the Mega Millions!”

          Thanks Glenn and I HOPE you are right and I’m wrong!
          I am still young (if only at heart) and have kids.

          ….but, I know numbers like few others and ….well, they do not look good!

          Be well,


        • -Petro says:

          My comments went “nuts”….
          …forgive me….

          be well,


      • BC says:

        Money velocity to private GDP is declining. Acceleration is contracting coincident with the emergence of price deflation.

        The implication is that the Fed will have to print at least another $2.5-$3 trillion in reserves during the next recession (not counting bailouts or “stimulus”) to prevent nominal GDP from contracting with emerging deflation.

      • BC says:

        Velocity is indeed “different this time” from the early 1980s. We were at the end of the inflation/stagflationary regime of the Long Wave, and today we are in the debt-deflationary (with not much debt deflation yet) regime of the Long Wave Trough.

        Corporate revenues and profits are contracting YoY and wage growth is weak, whereas growth of purchasing power is negative for the bottom 80-90% after increases in rents and health care costs, and after debt service.

        Central bank (CB) expansion of bank reserves/base money with wages and nominal GDP trending at ~2% and bank net margin below 3% causes the multiplier and velocity to decline further, which in turn reflects the conditions of a liquidity trap of secular stagnation of the debt-deflationary regime of the Long Wave Trough.

  5. Huckleberry Finn says:

    That zerohedge link reference is really silly. “Measured in USD the world is in recession”. Yeah right…How about measured in Gold the world was in recession from 2001-2010, or that idiot running the shadowstats website which shows inflation at 20% and zero economic growth for the last 30 years. Measuring GDP in USD is worthless exercise, but funnily the people that bring it up, don’t do so when it does not suit them. Like did you find anyone showing world gdp was booming in USD terms in 2007?

    • BC says:

      Steve, he’s quite correct about the Fed’s primary role, which I describe as running political cover for the TBTF/TBTE/TBTJ criminal int’l banking syndicate’s license to steal all of us bloody, bleeping blind.

      After all, the TBTE banks’ owners own the Fed and the largest primary dealer banks, including foreign banks.

      The Fed, “money”, and the fractional reserve banking/financial system is utterly misunderstood by the vast majority of the US population, but it’s not an accident that it is so. What we think we “know” to be true is a result of a century of propaganda, misinformation, disinformation, and, yes, outright fraud and theft of labor product, profits, and gov’t receipts for social goods by an infinitesimally small share of the US, Canadian, UK, Aussie, and European populations (and by extension and to a lesser extent Japanese, Mexican, South American, and oil emirates).

      But note that the US$ in terms of gold and M2 crashed 75-80% already from 2000-02 to 2012, as it did in 1973 to 1981-82.

      World real GDP per capita and capital and trade flows between the three major trading blocs imply that growth of trade and real GDP per capita is done and all major fiat currencies will trend toward parity with one another in the long run.

      Huck, you missed the point.

      Also, gold needs to be adjusted for the US$ and the differential rate of M2 to industrial production (and two more metrics I choose not to disclose).

      If one does not understand the fiat digital reserve currency effects and money velocity and acceleration, as the overwhelming majority of us do not, then one will miss what is actually happening and the implications.

      • Petro says:

        “…If one does not understand the fiat digital reserve currency effects and money velocity and acceleration…


        there is no such thing as “money acceleration”.

        -The velocity of money can accelerate, or (as it’s happening now) decelerate.

        Total GDP is measured as: Quantity of Money (M1+M2+M3….) * Money Velocity.
        Fed controls the Quantity – we (the people/market) controls Velocity (that is why our happiness -aka: consumer sentiment – is SOoooooo important for the FED!).
        For reasons that go way beyond the scope of this respected forum – therefore I shall not go into – we are not spending (aka: velocity deceleration!).

        It is quite a complicated (indeed intriguing and beautiful!) topic, but I hope I was simple enough.

        Be well,


        • R says:

          Is there a single textbook that *accurately* explains this federal reserve banking system in detail? I don’t care about the difficulty of the math, just am not interested in academic texts that are wrong.

          • Petro says:

            “Is there a single textbook that *accurately* explains this federal reserve banking system in detail?…”

            They make it up as they go….

            -The reason I “corrected” BC was not to be an inconsiderate, disrespectful smartypants….,but to ( as much as I can and when I can) kindly suggest (to BC and others in open forums akin to this one) that the fractional reserve system does NOT operate the way R. Paul, Chris Martenson (and others) understand it and present it to be operating.
            -It used to, not anymore!
            Why is this important (to you, I and others)?
            For we have passed the tipping point and, no matter what one thinks about the FEDand co. and what “they” have done to bring about this dire situation, right now one should pray “they” keep holding the system up and running by ANY means…no matter how absurd they seem to an Austrian economist akin to R. Paul, Mike Malloney and Chris Martenson.
            Indeed, pray that Yellen.and co. goes to the microphones every day and bullshits us with “stuff”….for that means the lights are on…
            We live in “bonus time” my friend and who tells you that we can fix this by being fiscally responsible and/or re-instituting the “hard money”/honest money” system we used to have – knows nothing about modern money creation/mechanics (i.e.: Jim Sinclair; Chris Martenson, etc.. despite their good intentions!!!) – OR, knows it in detail, but wants to sell books (i.e. Jim Rickards).

            So, it should matter to you and I for it alters our optics of the future and points it in the correct direction/understanding – no matter how dire and obscure that might be.
            We have entered the “tunnel” and this one my friend has no “light” at the end …
            The great ’50 and ’60s came after the 1930s and the WWII…not this time!
            This time is indeed different!
            And that is why you should care, and that is why i suggested to BC a somewhat “different” view from the classic fractional reserve banking and “honest money” view prevalent out there.

            Be well,


            • BC says:

              The public is not supposed to understand how the Fed and the banking system works, i.e., the gov’t-enabled and -protected license to steal; otherwise, we might be compelled en masse to burn down the Fed, Wall St, the Capitol, and the White House.

              • Caelan MacIntyre says:

                Kid: ‘Daddy? Why are there rich people?’
                “Cae-Dad: ‘What do you mean by rich? You mean like in spirit?’
                Kid: ‘No-o-o-o-o… Like they have lots of big houses and cars and money!’
                Cae-Dad: ‘Ohhh, you mean those kinds. Well, you see, sweetie, our society allows some people to make more money than other people, working no harder that anyone else. Society then allows those with more money to acquire more land than others. Over time, this creates the dynamic for most, if not all, problems we have in society today, from landlessness, homelessness and poverty, to social unrest, war and civilizational collapse.’
                Kid: ‘Why does society allow that?!’
                Cae-Dad: ‘Corruption. Society uses force to uphold the laws that say that one person with more money can have more land than another with less money.’
                Kid: ‘Why can’t we stop that!?’
                Cae-Dad: ‘Corruption again: This setup is upheld by people with guns and weapons, or access to them, like cops, security guards and military people– people who often don’t understand this basic and very simple immoral core of our society.’
                Kid: ‘ 🙁 ‘
                Cae-Dad: ‘Ya; 🙁 ‘

                … …

                James Howard Kunstler: “I voted for Obama twice.”
                Kid: “F__k you, James Howard Kunstler!”
                Cae-Dad: “Now-now, be nice… He just doesn’t know any better.”
                Kid: “Why not!?”
                Cae-Dad: “I don’t know. He should, but reality just doesn’t work like that.”
                Kid: ” 🙁 ”
                Cae-Dad: “Ya; 🙁 “

                • Petro says:

                  Always cheerful and amusing, Caelan!

                  …don’t forget though:
                  whether you agree with him or not, J H Kunstler is a great intellectual and independent thinker!
                  His writing style is always intriguing and ambitious.
                  We need people akin to him today more than ever….

                  Be well,


                  • Caelan MacIntyre says:

                    Good points taken, Petro, and I agree for the most part with regard to JHK, which is what makes his ‘state capitulation’ more confounding.

              • BC says:

                Speaking of the public not being allowed to understand the Fed, banking/financial system, “money”, etc.:








                What have the TBTE banksters been doing as they instructed the Yellen Fed to incessantly talk up a hike for the reserve rate?

                The TBTE banks anticipated another global deflationary recession as long as a year ago and began acting on it.

                IOW, they have been instructing the Fed to talk rate hike in order to keep Treasury and agency rates higher and prices lower than otherwise so they can buy at a discount and later sell to the Fed at a premium when the Fed resumes QEternity and NIRP during the next recession (having already begun) in order to fund larger deficits to prevent nominal GDP from contracting with deflation.

                Moreover, they have begun to increase C&I loan charge-offs as delinquencies rise, primarily in the energy and energy-related transport sectors, but that will spread to commercial RE loans, sub-prime auto loans, etc.

                The Fed’s job is to run political cover for the TBTE banks’ license to steal, and in the process fool the vast majority of the people all of the time.

                A resumption of QEternity is imminent as the global economy rolls over into another deflationary recession, only this time with a side order of NIRP as the hair-of-the-dog prescription for the debt hangover of secular stagnation and liquidity trap, following faithfully Japan since 1998 and the US after 1929-33 and 1937.

        • Jef says:

          “…we are not spending (aka: velocity deceleration!).”

          Petro – for the sake of accuracy I think you mean we are not borrowing. Big difference.

          • Petro says:

            “Petro – for the sake of accuracy I think you mean we are not borrowing. Big difference.”

            Incorrect, my dear friend!

            -Although debt/borrowing is the source of currency ( well, 97% of it anyway. 1%-3% is direct govt/treasury creation), to contribute to GDP and economic growth it MUST complete the circle which is done ONLY by public/market spending it!
            Otherwise is considered “hoarded” and does NOT contribute to the “quantity” that circulates and therefore is not counted in the GDP= Q*V equation (Q=quantity, V=velocity).

            Money is not as simple to comprehend as reading somebody’s post (i.e. C. Martenson) on the internet, ok.
            Is not wise to be “expertly” assertive in things you may not fully understand!

            Be well,


          • Petro says:

            “Petro – for the sake of accuracy I think you mean we are not borrowing. Big difference”

            Incorrect, my dear friend!

            -Although debt/borrowing is the source of currency ( well, 97% of it anyway. 1%-3% is direct govt/treasury creation), to contribute to GDP and economic growth it MUST complete the circle which is done ONLY by public/market spending it!
            Otherwise is considered “hoarded” and does NOT contribute to the “quantity” that circulates and therefore is not counted in the GDP= Q*V equation (Q=quantity, V=velocity).

            Money is not as simple to comprehend as reading somebody’s post (i.e. C. Martenson) on the internet, ok.
            Is not wise to be “expertly” assertive in things you may not fully understand!

            Be well,


          • Glenn Stehle says:

            No, I think Petro got it right.

            Think of it like Newton’s second law of motion, and the equation

            F = ma


            F = force

            m = mass

            a = acceleration

            The Fed, with various implements in its policy-making took kit, can pretty much control m, or the mass or quantity of money.

            Controlling F, however, or the forces that compel human behavior, is a much more complex and difficult problem.

          • Petro. says:

            “Petro – for the sake of accuracy I think you mean we are not borrowing. Big difference.”

            Incorrect, my dear friend!

            -Although debt/borrowing is the source of currency ( well, 97% of it anyway. 1%-3% is direct govt/treasury creation), to contribute to GDP and economic growth it MUST complete the circle which is done ONLY by public/market spending it!
            Otherwise is considered “hoarded” and does NOT contribute to the “quantity” that circulates and therefore is not counted in the GDP= Q*V equation (Q=quantity, V=velocity).

            Money is not as simple to comprehend as reading somebody’s post (i.e. C. Martenson) on the internet, ok.
            Is not wise to be “expertly” assertive in things you may not fully understand!

            Be well,


          • ....... says:

            Jef, you wrote:
            “Petro – for the sake of accuracy I think you mean we are not borrowing. Big difference.”

            Incorrect, my dear friend!

            -Although debt/borrowing is the source of currency ( well, 97% of it anyway. 1%-3% is direct govt/treasury creation), to contribute to GDP and economic growth it MUST complete the circle which is done ONLY by public/market spending it!
            Otherwise is considered “hoarded” and does NOT contribute to the “quantity” that circulates and therefore is not counted in the GDP= Q*V equation (Q=quantity, V=velocity).

            Money is not as simple to comprehend as reading somebody’s post (i.e. C. Martenson) on the internet, ok.
            Is not wise to be “expertly” assertive in things you may not fully understand!

            Be well,


          • -Petro says:

            My comments went “nuts”….
            I have no idea what happened!
            …forgive me….

            be well,


            • -Caelan MacIntyre says:

              Maybe it’s because you don’t comment here nearly as much as I’d like. So vex spell cast on your comments! ^u’

              Be well, despite an unwell world,

              ~ Cae

        • BC says:

          Yes, acceleration/deceleration of the “velocity of money”. Thanks.

  6. BC says:

    Watcher is correct, in that the kerogen/tar bubble is an existential national/regional/civilizational imperative for survival. Therefore, the Fed, banks, and gov’t owned by the top 0.001% owners of the banks and Fed will print, lend, bail, and tax whatever is required to keep the lower-quality, costlier, unprofitable kerogen/tar “oil” flowing, even if it means pumping unprofitably indefinitely at declining production and price.

    That is, the energy debt, kerogen/tar, and blood will flow, even if it means the latter flowing in increasingly disproportionate share domestically and around the world to secure the former and the ongoing log-linear decline per capita of the US “oil” depletion regime since 1970-85.

  7. Longtimber says:

    “Early last month, Citi “exposed” what it said was shale’s “dirty little secret.”
    ” when rates are at zero and when the hunt for yield generates a perpetual bid for anything the provides investors with any semblance of income, the market never gets to punish uneconomic business models by putting them out of business” “Therefore, these same producers just produce, and produce, and produce some more, driving prices ever lower”
    Sure what is obvious is obvious .. but why would an investment bank crow this out?

  8. StuckinWalkerWorld says:

    The story below documents the ripple effects from the slowdown in E&P activity in the Bakken. If you haven’t looked at the sand that comes out of the western WI sand mines, it is of exceptionally high quality. Unfortunately, we are still waiting to see what a reclaimed frac sand mining site looks like.
    Local 332262632

    Falling oil prices mean layoffs for Wisconsin sand mining companies
    LA CROSSE, Wis. — Low oil prices are claiming more Wisconsin sand mining jobs.

    U.S. Silica Co. plans to lay off an additional 16 workers at its Sparta processing plant, while Hi Crush Services plans to idle 27 workers at its plant in Augusta. That’s according to notices posted Monday by the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development.

    • Aaron 985 says:

      U.S. Silica is an exciting company to keep track of…

      Unit train delivering U.S. Silica frac sand breaks record

      U.S. Silica Holdings Inc. announced earlier this week the delivery of a record-breaking 150-car unit train carrying more than 16,500 tons of U.S. Silica White frac sand from its plant in Ottawa, Ill., to a transload facility serving the Permian Basin.

      Delivered by BNSF Railway Co., the unit train of sand was the longest ever delivered to a single destination on a Class I railroad, U.S. Silica officials said in a press release.

      “Delivery of sand by unit train is the most cost-effective means of transport, which is extremely important in today’s highly competitive marketplace,” said Don Weinheimer, U.S. Silica’s vice president and general manager of oil and gas.

      U.S. Silica has plants served by all Class I railroads.

      Although the U.S. land rig count is down due to lower oil prices, large volumes of sand continue to be required as current completion designs for wells demand increased volumes of sand per stage and more stages per well, according to U.S. Silica.

      Company officials cited a recent report by PacWest Consulting Partners that estimated sand usage per well rose 26 percent between third-quarter 2014 and second-quarter 2015.–46083

  9. I wonder why they use the words “upgrade mature oil fields”? It’s drilling, sidetracking or recompletions.

  10. Meanwhile, on the weather front, it looks like the California drought is going to become the California floods

    And the Arctic ice seems to be recovering in spite of “record high temperatures”

    • Ralph says:

      Arctic sea ice extent is increasing a little faster this autumn than it has in recent autumns, but it is a minor weather based fluctuation. It is increasing from the 4th lowest extent on record, sharply down from last September’s minimum. Sea ice volume also fell sharply to below last year’s minimum, just above the 2013 minimum. Total ice volume melt (from winter maximum to September minimum) was the third largest on record.

      In the Antarctic the ice area has seen the above average values of the last 2 years disappear, and area is now tracking back close to long term average. This meant that earlier this year global sea ice area briefly came very close to an all time record negative anomaly.

      There is NO recovery in sea ice. The reversion to the mean of the last 2 years is over. The long term melting trend has returned. (except it cannot continue long term, as there will be no more Arctic ice to melt at minimum, probably within a decade)

    • Fred Magyar says:

      Meanwhile, on the weather front, it looks like the California drought is going to become the California floods

      Well, that’s just dandy, ain’t it? I mean, floods are sooo much better than droughts… /Sarc

      “If it downpours heavily over a short period of time, it’s going to be dangerous, not just a welcome relief they perceive to be helping the drought,” Kelly Huston, deputy director of the state’s Office of Emergency Services, told the AP.

      As for this: And the Arctic ice seems to be recovering in spite of “record high temperatures”

      BTW, Why do you even keep posting this climate related stuff here? Please post it over at Real Climate where they will be more than happy to rebutt your nonsense.

      I’ll try to ignore your climate related posts in the future.

      • Then I suggest you limit your learning to items which reinforce your beliefs

        “1] Satellite observations reveal a greening of the globe over recent decades. The role in this greening of the “CO2 fertilization” effect—the enhancement of photosynthesis due to rising CO2 levels—is yet to be established. The direct CO2 effect on vegetation should be most clearly expressed in warm, arid environments where water is the dominant limit to vegetation growth. Using gas exchange theory, we predict that the 14% increase in atmospheric CO2 (1982–2010) led to a 5 to 10% increase in green foliage cover in warm, arid environments. Satellite observations, analyzed to remove the effect of variations in precipitation, show that cover across these environments has increased by 11%. Our results confirm that the anticipated CO2 fertilization effect is occurring alongside ongoing anthropogenic perturbations to the carbon cycle and that the fertilization effect is now a significant land surface process.”

      • Old Farmer Mac says:

        Hi Fred,

        Fernando is a poster boy of a sort that we all need to keep in mind- a professional with a lot of brains, very well educated in certain fields, who believes what he pleases outside that field.

        It does not matter if you agree with him about the overlord Cubans and the Venezuelans being latter day commie dictators, or more as you put it just dictators. There is some reason for him to continue to talk about communism in this context. The historical fingerprints are clear enough in my estimation.

        Most people no matter how well educated or trained (never liked that word , trained, we TRAIN dumb animals to pull plows) in the hard sciences most directly related to engineering work are abysmally ignorant of the life sciences.

        We all need to be reminded constantly that we all have blind spots. A man can be a world class authority in his own line of work and as lost as a child outside his own line.

        Eeverybody needs to be literate in math , physics/chemistry, biology, and history, both kinds of history- geological and historical.

        It is depressing as hell when you face up to the fact that most university graduates these days are not even INTRODUCED PROPERLY to more than one or at most two of these fields.The only ones who really get a proper grounding in two are the scientific types, they get mathematics along with their specialty.

        You can graduate from an Ivy League university these days and know no more about history, math, or science than I knew when I got out of high school. I know this is hard to believe, but anybody who wishes to do so can check the course requirements for getting various degrees. The catalogs are usually online and free access.

        NOW HEAR THIS.

        Anybody contemplating a move to away from the big city needs to hear this.

        Even though I went to a backwoods rural county high school back in the dark ages, there was an advanced placement or academic track for the doctor, lawyer, Indian Chief and teacher’s kids – but not enough of them to fill the classroom properly so some other kids were shifted in, based on our test scores. I took a science and math course every year starting in the eighth grade, for five years, all advanced placement, and some years I got two science courses. In what would have been ” study hall” I took ag- which had its OWN A P class. Out of twelve of us in my ag class eight got our degree- which considering the time and place was extraordinary.

        Incidentally even today your kid can most likely get a pretty decent education at a rural area high school if you make sure he is in these select classes- assuming of course he is either BRIGHT or willing to work his tail off.

        The actual EXISTENCE of these classes is not much publicized .Sometimes the school district will deny they even exist, but they are almost ALWAYS there never the less. If you go to the typical open house and follow the lawyers ,doctors and elementary school teachers ( with older kids ) around and make note of WHICH classes, specifically, are taught in WHICH classrooms, at particular hours, by PARTICULAR teachers, you can identify them easily. ( Most of the teachers involved will also have to teach some “b” and “c” level classes too, maybe as many as four out of five. )

        We are toast as far as average academic achievement goes these days, compared to the rest of the world.

        Our high schools are tasked with maintaining attendance rather than teaching. Passing out diplomas is more politically expedient than passing out educated kids. Teachers have next to nothing in the way of real power to insist that students actually WORK at learning.Learning can be fun , but real learning is actually WORK for the most part. The average parent pays hardly any attention to what goes on at his kids school anymore, and never did, actually, except maybe for sports.

        The NEA is a trade union, rather than an organization primarily concerned about kids and education. I know, I was a member of it for years.

        Most universities are MUCH more interested in tuition money than in their end of the bargain- delivering the educational goods. Adjunct professors and grad students are poorly paid, but you don’t see much about hard up professors anymore- because most of them are actually paid quite well considering the work they do- work they WANT to do, generally as it suits them, when it suits them, with very little supervision. If I had my life to live over, I would be a professor of some kind in some obscure little college writing a paper about something important to me occasionally, and teaching a couple of small classes.

        A typical degree earned these days is about as useful as a pig saddle in terms of really understanding what is going on in the world. Earned is perhaps too kind a word, half the degrees are simply SOLD in exchange for a four year vacation in hormone land.

        God help us, almost all of our leaders these days are lawyers and know next to nothing about anything that really matters, except the law.

        • Venezuelans aren’t “later day commie dictators”. The Venezuelans are the victims of a newfangled type of communist. Venezuela’s president, Maduro, travels on at least a monthly basis to meet with and receive instructions from Raúl Castro.

        • Fred Magyar says:

          A typical degree earned these days is about as useful as a pig saddle in terms of really understanding what is going on in the world. Earned is perhaps too kind a word, half the degrees are simply SOLD in exchange for a four year vacation in hormone land.

          Yep, and that is putting it mildly!

        • Ronald Walter says:

          When I was in high school, during chemistry class one day towards the end of the school year I overheard the chemistry instructor mutter the words, “I don’t know why we try to teach them anything when they’re at an age when they don’t want to learn a thing.”

          You can lead a bull to the whatchamacallit, but you can’t make him stampede.

          When I was in college one of my courses in chemistry required instruction in the use of a DU2 spectrophotometer. I asked a chemistry professor if it was possible to tear down the instrument to practice troubleshooting. There was nothing wrong with the spectrophotometer, I just wanted to see what was inside. Of course the professor thought I was off my rocker and the spectrophotometer wasn’t ripped apart by some idiot who had no clue.

          If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

          • Fred Magyar says:

            I asked a chemistry professor if it was possible to tear down the instrument to practice troubleshooting.

            I guess you didn’t have Google back then? 🙂 If you do a Google image search for spectrophotometer today you get everything you could possible want. Diagrams, specs, parts lists, etc… you name it.

            You were just born before your time…

      • Glenn Stehle says:

        Fred Magyar said:

        BTW, Why do you even keep posting this climate related stuff here? Please post it over at Real Climate where they will be more than happy to rebutt your nonsense.

        So we’re calling out the censors, are we? And as always when it comes to authoritarian solutions, there’s more than just a bit of a double standard at work.

        Maybe the reason why you and the others who claim to speak in the name of “science” are losing so badly in the marketplace of ideas and public opinion (as is evidenced by the graph I have attached below) is not so much because of the content of your arguments, but because of their form?

        While I certainly don’t agree with much of what Fernando says, I nevertheless defend his right to say it.

        • I don’t go by polling to formulate my opinions. If I did I wouldn’t write anti Netanyahu content like this

        • Fred Magyar says:

          Glenn, he can post whatever he wants! This is Ron’s site. I just got tired of reading his nonsense and am suggesting he post it on a site where they have experts in that field to rebut him. As I said, it is my own fault for responding to his posts,I should know better and I will just try a lot harder not to do that in the future.

        • Fred Magyar says:

          Glenn, He can post whatever he want’s this is Ron’s site not mine.
          I just wish he would post that kind of stuff elsewhere and that was a suggestion on my part certainly not a demand. I find his posts on most things climate related to be nonsense.

          He is known over at and they do not have a very high opinion of him there. I mean imagine that. A climate science site, run by climate scientists who say he is wrong!

          OK, I admit it is my own damn fault for responding to him. Which is why I said I would try to do a better job of ignoring his climate related posts in the future.

          • Glenn Stehle says:


            I was in Bolivia a couple of years ago, and we rented a car and went up into the foothills above La Paz for a couple of days.

            The driver was in his late 50s or 60s. He told me that, as a child, the snow line on the Andes was much lower than it is now. I believed him, and I suppose that my belief that global warming is happening has much more to do with what my own senses tell me than the mathetmatical models the scientists create.

            It might be interesting to take some old photos of the Andes and compare the snow line then to now.

            This sort of goes back to something Daniel Kahneman said in the article you linked the other day:

            You’re not thinking of saving two hundred thousand birds. You are thinking of saving a bird. The emotion is associated with the idea of saving a bird from drowning. The quantity is completely separate. Basically you’re representing the whole set by a prototype incident, and you evaluate the prototype incident….

            There is even research showing that when you show pictures of ten children, it is less effective than when you show the picture of a single child. When you describe their stories, the single instance is more emotional than the several instances and it translates into the size of contributions.

            People are almost completely insensitive to amount in system one. Once you involve system two and systematic thinking, then they’ll act differently. But emotionally we are geared to respond to images and to instances, and when we do that we get what I call “extension neglect.” Duration neglect is an example of, you have a set of moments and you ignore how many moments there are. You have a set of birds and you ignore how many birds there are. …

            So sometimes less is more?

            The take-away from what Kahneman and others are saying is that science communicaiton is a very, very complex undertaking.

            Do people equate (and maybe correctly so) global warming with taking the punch bowl away?

            And if so, does this explain why an entire array of escape mechanisms — denial, avoidance, procrastination, wishful thinking, mental laziness, etc. — are triggered?

            Does the tone of the debate, in which science communication all to often boils down to charging that those who do not accept the scientific consensus are “stupid,” “ignorant,” “anti-science,” and driven by money, religion and politics, cause resentment and blowback? Are these charges true?

            Now granted, we do live in an era whose tone was set by Ronald Reagan, and an entire industry has grown up to engender and appeal to the escape mechanisms. But nevertheless, more and more people are opting for myth over reality. Why?

            At what point do we wake up, as the arbitristas did after the Spanish Empire had peaked and an atmosphere of desengaño had set in, and begin to “attempt to discover at what point reality had been exchanged for illusion,” as Cervantes and many others of his era did?

            • Fred Magyar says:

              I believed him, and I suppose that my belief that global warming is happening has much more to do with what my own senses tell me than the mathetmatical models the scientists create.

              Sure, that’s fine and the actual scientific data back up those observations. Pictures are not hard to find either. Google Images has plenty.


              The dramatic retreat of the Andean glaciers over the last 30 years
              February 2013 Scientific newssheets
              © IRD / P. Blanchon

              The glaciers in the tropical Andes shrunk between 30 and 50% in 30 years, which represents the highest rate observed over the last three centuries. IRD researchers and their partners( 1) recently published a summary which chronicles the history of these glaciers since their maximum extension, reached between 1650 and 1730 of our era, in the middle of the Little Ice Age*. The faster melting is due to the rapid climate change which has occurred in the tropics since the 1950s, and in particular since the end of the 1970s, leading to an average temperature rise of 0.7°C in this part of the Andes. At the current pace of their retreat, small glaciers could disappear within the next 10 to 15 years, affecting water supply for the populations.

              Life without oil may be hard but life without adequate supplies of drinking water is one heck of a lot harder…

              • Glenn Stehle says:

                Bolivia, I am told, is one of the countries like Mexico which will be devastated by the changes brought about by global warming.

                It is my understanding that much of Bolivia’s fresh water supply comes from the glaciers. And once they are gone, then what?

                • MarbleZeppelin says:

                  I recommend reading Glaciers: The Politics of Ice, covers a lot of the problems and actions in South America concerning water supplies from glaciers.

                • Bolivia is overpopulated. They need to use family planning.

                  • Nick G says:

                    ” The TFRs for indigenous and nonindigenous women were 4.3 and 3.1, respectively. The wanted fertility rate for indigenous women was nearly the same as that for nonindigenous women (1.5 and 1.7, respectively);”

                    They want fewer children, but something is getting in the way – religious barriers to contraception?

                  • I suspect it’s a combination of religious barriers with ignorance and a bit of social breakdown (teenage pregnancy).

                    We used to finance an anthropologist who worked on this topic as part of a program we had to reduce poverty. She advised us the key was to keep young girls from getting pregnant, in school.

                    I tried an experiment with my cook’s family. Offered a scholarship to one of her daughters. She stayed in school, never got pregnant that I know of. She has a law degree now. The question now is whether she’ll find an educated guy she will want to have children with.

                  • Nick G says:

                    You did good.

                    Your cook was also a good mother. Many fathers are not, and many Latin American countries don’t protect young women from bad fathers, relatives, boyfriends, etc.

                    “This appalling case highlights several of Latin America’s abiding ills. The first is child abuse. While the plight of street children and child prostitutes has received a lot of attention, most abuse occurs in the home. Although there is little data, there is no reason to believe it is less prevalent than elsewhere in the world. It may be more so. Bolivia’s ombudsman reported that 34% of girls suffered sexual abuse before age 18. Studies suggest that up to 36% of Latin American adult women suffer domestic or sexual violence.

                    The second affliction is teen pregnancy, which is extraordinarily common given the region’s level of development. In Latin America 69 in every thousand girls aged 15-19 gave birth in 2012, according to the UN, a rate that is exceeded only in sub-Saharan Africa. The rate is higher than 80 per thousand in six countries in the region: Nicaragua, the Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Guyana, Honduras and Venezuela.

                    For very young girls the problem may be worsening. According to the UN Population Fund, over the past 15 years or so six of eleven countries in Latin America for which it has data saw a rise in pregnancies among girls aged 10-14. This is almost always the result of abuse. In Paraguay, whose population is 7m, there were 680 births to mothers under 15 last year”


                  • Let me see if I can get the pope to approve family planning sermons.

                  • Nick G says:

                    But, this article is about abuse. Seems like a tough sell to get abusers to wear condoms.

      • Old Farmer Mac says:

        The data is HERE when it comes to the ice mass trend over the last ten years.

  11. Jonathan Madden says:

    In anticipation of The Great Electrical Revolution and turning away from FFs, I have turned back the clock here in the UK and increased our electricity consumption, vs. natural gas, in a marginally innovative way.

    The colder winter weather also brings shorter days so come October we swap low Wattage light bulbs for traditional incandescents. These simple devices, much cheaper than fluorescents and LEDs (we bought 50 years’ supply before they went off the market in Europe), give out 90% heat in a most pleasing manner. They dim to a warm orange colour, make no noise, are long-lasting and are pleasingly low-tech. All switched on we get about 2.5kW heat – perfect for a cold winter’s day!

    • MarbleZeppelin says:

      Jonathan, what temperature do you mean when talking about a cold winter day?

      • vola says:

        .oops, sorry…

      • It’s 12 degrees in England, going down to 9-10 degrees C. Barcelona has 19 degrees, going down to 12 C. But I have my windows open. My thermometer says its 23 degrees C 😊

        • MarbleZeppelin says:

          It’s been getting down to 3 to 5 C here at night. 40 degrees N latitude.Supposed to hit zero C here by Saturday. Don’t have that Gulf Stream effect. Lowest winter temps here are about -30 C.

        • Techsan says:

          Fernando, while you are denying that global warming will have much effect, it has been 100 F (38 C) this week near Austin, Texas. Not only have we been breaking temperature records every day, but this has broken the all-time record for how late in the year it has been this hot by 10 days.

          • Techsan, I guess you don’t have the reading comprehension skills required to follow what I write. Global warming is a secondary problem. As of this year, 2015, the warming we have experienced is positive. It will probably remain a positive impact on humanity until 2060 to 2070. We will see peak oil and peak gas before 2060. Therefore a low cost energy shortage is a much larger problem. So are overpopulation and the way the American political elite is degenerating into a bunch of imbeciles (figuratively speaking, of course).

      • Jonathan Madden says:

        Down to -5C. The house is 18th C, but pretty well insulated. With 2.5 kW or so it can maintain a 25 degree C difference with outside ambient temp. It’s not very large, though, by US standards. But it does get some extra from cooking, kettle, and appliances – say 3.5 kW in all.

        • MarbleZeppelin says:

          When it gets up to -5C around here in the winter I think that spring is coming. That would be a high temperature in the winter. For several weeks last winter the highs were hitting -15C or lower.

          Wood is a decent alternative here since it is free at times. Otherwise it’s about 10 dollars per million BTU split and dried.

    • MarbleZeppelin says:

      Jonathan, 2.5 kw to heat in the winter is not much. Around here the typical house needs 7 to 10 kw on the coldest days ( minus 10 to minus 20 Fahrenheit).
      Here are my local energy costs per million BTU
      Fuel Oil $12.54
      Natural Gas $8.14
      Electricity $42.50

      • Jonathan Madden says:

        Prices here that we pay are about $0.20/kWhr for electricity and $0.07/kWhr for natural gas, domestic rate. Both have risen considerably in recent years.

    • Old Farmer Mac says:

      You can get the same effect by buying a purpose made resistor to put in the bottom of the fixture before you screw in a conventional incandescent bulb. You can still find them if you look for them, they are thin and round like a dime and used to sell for a dollar or less. The bulb will run a lot cooler, and a less efficiently, but it will last a VERY LONG time.

      We use an incandescent bulb this way to protect an above ground pump inside an unheated out building in really cold weather. I suppose I ought to swap it out for heat tape, but it has worked flawlessly for forty or fifty years with maybe a couple of bulbs replaced in that entire time. It is left on maybe four weeks a year unless I forget to turn it off, in which case it may still be on the following winter. Put in a high value resistor and a low watt bulb and it will only glow very dimly.

      The pump and bulb are covered over with a bat of fiberglass insulation. Fireproof.

  12. Lloyd says:

    A post for all, but especially anyone with Canadian well knwledge:
    My nephew is a roughneck in Fort McMurray. I saw him this weekend, and got some interesting data…only asked on the way out the door, so I didn’t ask any followups after I thought about his answers.
    #1 He is working on a new well; he had a choice of two to join on with, and a third he couldn’t get to because of a prior work commitment (working on construction drilling pilings since being laid off in February.) He has previously worked on natural gas wells: he referred to this as a “condensate” well. It is a fracked horizontal well. My guess was that if this were in the Bakken, it would just be called an “oil well”.

    So, Canadian drillers: are the Canadian legal definitions of crude and condensate closer to Texas than ND? I noticed yesterday (IIRC) that the EIA has Canadian production holding to rising. Is my anecdote an anomaly, or is Canadian drilling activity picking up?

    #2 An obvious use for the well’s production is to blend with OilyTar sands oil. Local production might be more stable and less expensive (lower transit costs.) Discuss.


    • Aws. says:

      The Tar sands need lots of diluent. Bitumen don’t flow.

    • The extra heavy oil is sometimes called “bitumen” or “tar sand oil”. It’s basically an oil made up of very large hydrocarbon molecules, rich in carbon, poor in hydrogen, this leads to a very dense fluid with very high viscosity.

      The “bitumen” has to be diluted to be handled in the field and put into a pipeline. The fields where I worked used nafta at a 1 to 4 ratio, to make an 18 degree API diluted crude. In Canada this is called a “dilbit”.

      The diluent can be condensate from a gas condensate reservoir, a lighter oil, or nafta. The lighter oil can be produced naturally, or it can be synthetic oil made from bitumen in an upgrader. If synthetic crude is used the blend is called a synbit. I have seen loads prepared using a mix of bitumen, syncrude, and light crude.

      Some synthetic crudes come from the upgrader with an insufficient amount of hydrogen. This leaves broken down molecules needing to link up, which makes this type of crude very unstable. It has to be shipped to the refinery in a hurry or it makes resins.

      The heavy crude can’t be blended with some light hydrocarbons. But the extra heavy mixed to 18 degrees is fine most of the time. However, mixing a condensate with an asphaltic 27 degrees API crude can be dangerous, it causes asphatine deposition, and in some cases, if the crude has water, the blend looks like black, thick, sticky mayonnaise. It’s very difficult to handle.

      • Paulo says:

        I thought it was called Naptha. Nafta is the North American Free Trade Agreement.

        “A dilbit is a bitumen diluted with one or more lighter petroleum products, typically natural-gas condensates such as naphtha.”

        • Nafta is what my multilingual spell checker used. It overwrites what I type when it feels like it. It’s what happens when one shifts language & forgets to tell the damn machine. Any more questions?

  13. Doug Leighton says:



  14. Doug Leighton says:

    And, more cheerful news to go with your morning coffee folks.


    “A world-first global analysis of marine responses to climbing human CO2 emissions has painted a grim picture of future fisheries and ocean ecosystems.”

    • Doug Leighton says:

      Meanwhile, back on topic:


      “In FORT McMURRAY, Alberta — At a camp for oil workers here, a collection of 16 three-story buildings that once housed 2,000 workers sits empty. A parking lot at a neighboring camp is now dotted with abandoned cars. With oil prices falling precipitously, capital-intensive projects rooted in the heavy crude mined from Alberta’s oil sands are losing money, contributing to the loss of about 35,000 energy industry jobs across the province.”

      • Doug Leighton says:

        It’s not all bad.

        “At a luxury car dealership in Vancouver, a 19-year-old college student recently traded in his 2014 Ferrari for a 2016 Bentley that cost C$350,000 ($268,446). MCL Motor Cars Manager Scott Warren says the teen was his typical customer: young, Chinese and eager to swap a relatively new car for an even newer, trendier model.”

        • Must be a princeling, son of a Chinese Communist Party oligarch. As Chinese communism continues to evolve into neofascist dictatorship we should see more of the little bastards pop up. Eventually the proletariate will have a revolution and hang them or shoot them full of holes.

          • Wake says:

            Your use of the word proletariat along with your history makes it seem as though you are against it, but the overall tone implies satisfaction

            Complex fellow

      • Paulo says:


        I just remarked to my son the other day that the worst thing that could have happened to him was having one of the high paying jobs in the Oil Sands. He got it in his early twenties after obtaining his electrical ticket. It allowed him to buy/build a new house, but he developed no appreciation for money and what it represented to most people. It was ‘easy come easy go’. For example, he went out and bought (on whim) the fastest production crotch rocket made. It has now sat idle for the last two years. He is now renting out his house while starting to develop his own business. He lives in a basement suite with his girlfriend who is in 3rd year nursing. I have never seen him happier and more engaged with his future.

        At 31 he has been worried about the future and eventual retirement because despite his past large paycheques he lacked the ability to focus on a distinct long range plan. Instead, he bought stuff and spent money living large. Now, he sees that renting the house out will carry the mortgage and his home will be paid for by someone else. He and girlfriend will buy another house in town as soon as she graduates. I told him if he does it a couple of times he will have a source of retirement income and a list of jobs to do for the rest of his life. Due to financial necessities of running a business, he is now putting one foot in front of the other and walking/living with direction. He is building a future as opposed to simply buying stuff. He is much poorer short term, but far better off as a person.

        Those Alberta jobs were Canada’s Dutch disease. The decline of them will be better for all of us, imho.


  15. Ronald Walter says:

    The Little Ice Age had its drawbacks.

    “One group in particular suffered from the poor conditions – people thought to be witches (Behringer, 1999.) Weather-making was thought to be among the traditional abilities of witches and during the late fourteenth and fifteenth centuries many saw a great witch conspiracy. Extensive witch hunts took place during the most severe years of the LIA, as people looked for scapegoats to blame for their suffering.”

    Let the Arctic ice melt, build refrigerated cold climate zoos for Polar bears, you need to be compassionate. Long spells of cold weather are bad news for witches suspected of causing long spells of cold weather, that’s for sure.

    Warm weather reduces the need to heat all those homes, oil consumption would fall, more electricity is better than more oil. Gotta go tropical.

    The 923 wells to be completed represents at least 92,300 barrels of oil per day, worth enough to loan some more money, as worthless as money is, everybody still wants it.

    • MarbleZeppelin says:

      I have met some of those witches. The myths aren’t true, cuddling up with one under a thick quilt in the winter definitely keeps you warm. Need to watch the sharp tongue and the mushrooms in your dinner though.

      I don’t think the north central continental people are going to appreciate the warming trend though. Much hotter summers and still about as cold in the winter. It still gets dark a lot in the winter up north even with global warming.

      • Heinrich Leopold says:

        Marble Zeppelin,

        Contrary to the media hype, people in Europe are waiting for climate change finally arriving. After a fairly normal summer, we have now snow in October! The media and the reality has never been as far apart as now.

        • MarbleZeppelin says:

          Local weather caused by a shift in the Jetstream. Had the arctic freezer here for two years, hoping for a more “normal” winter/summer coming up. Heck, we are ten degrees or more further south than much of Europe and had snow in October.

          With temps down to -40 F or lower, a shift in arctic air can overcome any global warming effect, at least locally and temporarily. I remember articles about France and Germany at different times saying how hot it was. How soon they forget.

          So don’t confuse local weather with global warming and climate change. Two years from now you will be complaining about the heat and drought.

        • wharf rat says:

          New all time temperature records in Europe during July:

          •The new all-time high temperature for any location or date in Germany of 104.5 degrees was set July 5 in the city of Kitzingen. This breaks Germany’s previous record of 104.4 degrees set first in 1983 and then tied twice in 2003.

          •The hottest June temperature ever recorded of 104 degrees occurred in Madrid on June 30.

          •On Tuesday, July 7, Geneva soared to 103.5 degrees, its highest temperature ever recorded. That’s the highest temperature ever recorded in all of Switzerland in July, and the second highest temperature ever recorded in the country during any month. Source: Jeff Masters

          •Paris soared to 103.5 degrees on July 1, the second-hottest temperature it has seen on any day since they began weather records (in 1873)

          •The new hottest temperature ever recorded in downtown Frankfurt of 102.2 degrees was set July 5, according to Jeff Masters, director of meteorology at Weather Underground. Masters found that the Frankfurt airport also set a new record for all-time hottest temperature July 5 at 101.8 degrees.

          •Via Jeff Masters: “The temperature in Maastricht, the Netherlands, hit 100.8°F (38.2°C) on July 2, setting an all-time July heat record for the nation.”

          •London Heathrow climbed to 98.1 degrees July 1, the hottest temperature ever recorded during the month of July anywhere in the U.K. The previous record of 97.7 degrees was set July 19, 2006.

          • Walt Sehorn says:

            Very warm all around, indeed, but let’s steer back to the original topic in this comment thread, the so-called “Little Ice Age”. Incidentally, and interestingly, the emergence from that period has been conclusively shown to have stopped over the past dozen and more years. That is, with the unaltered global temperature data in hand – which you can get at – there has been no global warming at all since 1998. Even the bureaucratic IPCC has been forced to admit this unexpected fact at this point, as has Phil Jones, who you might recall was the lead global warming researcher at Hadley until his involvement in the ClimateGate deception came to light.

            • Fred Magyar says:

              You should check out their trend lines and their disclaimer
              Beware sharp tools

              However, with sharp tools comes great responsibility… Please read the notes on things to beware of – and in particular on the problems with short, cherry-picked trends. Remember that the signals we are dealing with are very, very noisy, and it’s easy to get misled – or worse, still to mislead others.


              The overall trend shows a continual increase in global temperature…

              If you look at the trend data, you can see the current trends in °C, between 0.14-0.16°C/decade, or, if it continues at the same rate, between 1.4 and 1.6°C per century.

              I don’t know maybe to some people this graph looks like a decreasing trend line?

              • I discern a stairstep pattern. A super El Niño in 1997-8 seems to cause a step up.

                We are now seeing an aborted El Niño in 2014, followed by a 2015-6 event. This means the weather is warmer than usual. The huge question is whether we will see the temperature drop during a subsequent La Niña event, which cools down the surface, and whether we will see temperatures stay a stair step up.

                I’m having doubts about surface temperatures being genuine, because they are diverging from the satellite readings. The satellite records are what’s used to argue there’s no warming. The surface temperatures are used to say there’s warming. And this surface record was “fixed” to show much higher temperatures in the last few years. The “fix” documentation was put behind a paywall and hasn’t been clearly explained to my satisfaction.

                So for now I’m keeping an eye more on the satellites and my own look at individual weather stations, the Central England record, etc.

                • Don Wharton says:

                  As usual Fernando is posting blithering nonsense.

                  I’m having doubts about surface temperatures being genuine, because they are diverging from the satellite readings.

                  There is no divergence. The ham handed misinterpretation of the data by Roy Spencer is ancient history. Spencer is a creationist dingbat who substituted ideology for science. The fact that Fernando continues to post these delusional claims is quite sad. Does he really think a policy of repeating preposterous propaganda is going to work here? All it does is cement his reputation as someone who posts nonsense that is not worthy of our attention or respect.

                  I mostly ignore what Fernando has to say on global warming. Obviously his falsehoods represent noise of no value. Long chains of comments showing how and why delusional nonsense is false does not always add to the quality of what people come here to understand. I come here to understand what is happening with oil and gas. Such long chains responding to Fernando just become an obstacle that needs to be waded through to find data on oil and gas.

                  Unfortunately I have a solid lay understanding of the science on global warming. That generates a sense of obligation to respond to Fernando when he posts his absurdities. I usually am able to suppress this sense of obligation because I emphasize with those who do not want this blog cluttered with tedious argumentation about settled science. There is much in the world of climate science that is not settled. However, Fernando’s extreme misrepresentations of the science are not even close to the issues that are deserving of our attention.

                  • Glenn Stehle says:


                    And yet, in the marketplace of ideas, which is the linchpin of our entire democratic form of governance, Fernando is knocking your dick in the dirt.

                    Why do you suppose that is?

                  • Don Wharton says:


                    I believe that you are fully aware that even conservatives now have a majority who understand that global warming is real. I think you realize that the real question here is how the GOP can get away with near unanimous support for an anti-science position when the majority of those who vote for them realize that it is crackpot nonsense. The answer to that is unfortunately too long and complex to be answered in a few paragraphs here.

                  • Don Wharton:

                    If we look at the data objectively, we can observe the NOAA surface temperature anomaly data is diverging from the NASA tropospheric anomaly data. This point isn’t debatable.

                    Very truly yours,

                    Don Fernando


                    NOAA surface temperature anomaly plot

                    Hadley center webpage

                    NASA satellite data showing lower troposphere shown in a NASA contractor webpage

                    Same NASA satellite data as displayed in a NOAA webpage

                  • Don Wharton says:


                    The two reporting systems are reporting on significantly different subsets of planetary temperatures. To begin with the atmospheric temperatures are supposed to be different from surface temperatures in a way that is consistent with the mathematical models. Your RSS chart says explicitly that only -70 to +82.5 latitude are covered. I have seen no scientific studies arguing that we have a problem with the data based on the modest differences you are citing here. Given your prior heavy handed and extremist misrepresentations of the science I will await some credible peer reviewed scientific examination of the data saying that there is a problem with the data.

                    Note that you have not done yourself any favor with your prior attacks on scientists when they have corrected data that was in error. If such prior changes are to you a conspiracy on the part of scientists to defraud the public then we have good reason to distrust anything that you have to say on this subject.

                    I do want to thank you for citing the references you are using to generate your twisted misrepresentations of what is happening. It does gives us some data on the the thinking that is going on with some anti-science extremists. If you find a peer reviewed study documenting an error with these different data sources we will be gratefully happy to attend to what it has to say. It is not as if there have not been many ways in which our understanding have had to be corrected in the past. It is just that any correction needs to be recognized and understood by people dedicated to a fair and balanced understanding of what is real.

            • wharf rat says:

              “there has been no global warming at all since 1998. ”
              If you check with the experts within the next 2.5 months, they’ll tell you there’s been no warming since 2014. In Jan, they will tell you that there’s been no warming since 2015.

              What would Phil Jones say?
              Global warming since 1995 ‘now significant’

              By Richard Black
              Environment correspondent, BBC News

              10 June 2011
              Climate warming since 1995 is now statistically significant, according to Phil Jones, the UK scientist targeted in the “ClimateGate” affair.


            • Synapsid says:

              Troll alert.

              • Walt Sehorn says:

                I’m not a troll. I am just looking at climate change with a discriminating eye. You wouldn’t troll alert me if you had the same discriminating eye as I do.

                • Walt, you are looking at the NASA satellite troposphere temperature anomaly data

                  The orthodox Hansenites rely on the Karlized NOAA data.

                  There’s no solid reason to have these two match. However, the growing spread between the NOAA and NASA data is probably going to make NASA calibrate their satellite sensors with jet engine intake temperatures, instead of weather balloons. 😊

    • Glenn Stehle says:


      I’ve often wondered if some places — like Russia or an ice bucket like Siberia — might actually benefit from global warming.

      • MarbleZeppelin says:

        Much of Siberia like much of northern Canada and Alaska will turn into a bog ridden unstable haven for mosquitos and black flies as they get warmer. Permafrost melting tends to make it very difficult to put in infrastructure of any kind. The terrain is always giving way and changing, filling up with water.
        South of the permafrost zones might benefit from a slightly longer growing season.

        • Doug Leighton says:

          “Much of Siberia like much of northern Canada and Alaska will turn into a bog ridden unstable haven for mosquitoes and black flies…Believe me man, it’s like that already. But to be more accurate you should replace “much of” with “most of”.

          • MarbleZeppelin says:

            If you think that the permafrost areas are full of ponds, lakes and bogs now, it will be much worse in the future. Great areas to become permanent wildlife parks.

      • Quite a few areas will benefit. The temperature increase is gradual, co2 helps plants, and this means plants just move north. Russian scientists report the taiga, the Siberian forest, is moving north, replacing tundra. The trees are also bigger.

        The vegetation increased is confirmed by satellite observations. And it makes sense. It’s what’s to be expected.

        One other issue is that temperature increases are much less significant in the tropics. This means global warming is more pronounced in high latitudes. The increasing high latitude warmth leads to a more even temperature distribution. This impacts the way air flows from the tropics, but in general the climate simply gets better, other than the change is a bit abrupt and there will be regions suffering from drought, while others which were dry before will be getting more rain.

        The global warming problem seems to be highly exaggerated using all sorts of propaganda. It’s more of a political issue, and most impacts I read about are made up or exaggerations.

        The big problem we will have from global warming is sea level rise. And that sea level rise will be very slow. What makes this even worse is that cutting emissions may cause more sea level rise by 2100, because it will reduce snowfall over Antarctica.

        This means we really do need to plan for future sea level rise whether we cut emissions or not. I think we will cut them anyway because we will reach peak fossil fuels.

        So this brings me back to the main problem being peak oil, simply because the renewables can’t cut it. We need better technology.

        • Nick G says:


          I find your approach very frustrating. I can tell that you have some good ideas. For instance, your emphasis that the likely curve of emissions on the low side of the various scenarios makes sense.

          But, you seem to have some very rigid and unrealistic assumptions. In particular, this idea that “renewables can’t cut it”. So, that makes me suspect that overall it’s not worth the time to try to verify your other ideas, like this one that global warming is a net benefit.

          • Renewables can’t cut it. That’s a fact. Mac thinks panel costs will drop 50 % in 10 years, maybe we can develop offshore wind to work without humongous subsidies, and a Guatemalan chemist will invent THE battery made from banana peels.

            But until that happens, renewables don’t cut it. Blowing bugles and throwing confetti in the air doesn’t convince me.

            • Nick G says:

              Sadly, you’ve been given quite a lot of evidence that renewables are cheaper, more sustainable, more scalable, etc., which you’ve waved away.

              It’s not enough to make a hand waving argument. Really.

              • I haven’t seen such evidence. I do see a lot of arm waving.

                • Nick G says:


                  Here’s one:

                  Renewables Are Disruptive to Coal and Gas
                  by Ramez Naam on May 21, 2015 at 9:00 am in Economics, Science | Permalink
                  Over the last 5 years, the price of new wind power in the US has dropped 58% and the price of new solar power has dropped 78%. That’s the conclusion of investment firm Lazard Capital. The key graph is here (here’s a version with US grid prices marked). Lazard’s full report is here.
                  Utility-scale solar in the West and Southwest is now at times cheaper than new natural gas plants. Here’s UBS on the most recent record set by solar. (Full UBS solar market flash here.)
                  We see the latest proposed PPA price for Xcel’s SPS subsidiary by NextEra (NEE) as in NM as setting a new record low for utility-scale solar. [..] The 25-year contracts for the New Mexico projects have levelized costs of $41.55/MWh and $42.08/MWh.
                  That is 4.155 cents / kwh and 4.21 cents / kwh, respectively. Even after removing the federal solar Investment Tax Credit of 30%, the New Mexico solar deal is priced at 6 cents / kwh. By contrast, new natural gas electricity plants have costs between 6.4 to 9 cents per kwh, according to the EIA.
                  (Note that the same EIA report from April 2014 expects the lowest price solar power purchases in 2019 to be $91 / MWh, or 9.1 cents / kwh before subsidy. Solar prices are below that today.)
                  The New Mexico plant is the latest in a string of ever-cheaper solar deals. SEPA’s 2014 solar market snapshot lists other low-cost solar Power Purchase Agreements. (Full report here.)
                  Austin Energy (Texas) signed a PPA for less than $50 per megawatt-hour (MWh) for 150 MW.
                  TVA (Alabama) signed a PPA for $61 per MWh.
                  Salt River Project (Arizona) signed a PPA for roughly $53 per MWh.
                  Wind prices are also at all-time lows. Here’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory on the declining price of wind power (full report here):
                  After topping out at nearly $70/MWh in 2009, the average levelized long-term price from wind power sales agreements signed in 2013 fell to around $25/MWh.
                  After adding in the wind Production Tax Credit, that is still substantially below the price of new coal or natural gas.
                  Wind and solar compensate for each other’s variability, with solar providing power during the day, and wind primarily at dusk, dawn, and night.
                  Energy storage is also reaching disruptive prices at utility scale. The Tesla battery is cheap enough to replace natural gas ‘peaker’ plants. And much cheaper energy storage is on the way.
                  Renewable prices are not static, and generally head only in one direction: Down. Cost reductions are driven primarily by the learning curve. Solar and wind power prices improve reasonably predictably following a power law. Every doubling of cumulative solar production drives module prices down by 20%. Similar phenomena are observed in numerous manufactured goods and industrial activities, dating back to the Ford Model T. Subsidies are a clumsy policy (I’d prefer a tax on carbon) but they’ve scaled deployment, which in turn has dropped present and future costs.
                  By the way, the common refrain that solar prices are so low primarily because of Chinese dumping exaggerates the impact of Chinese manufacturing. Solar modules from the US, Japan, and SE Asia are all similar in price to those from China.
                  Fossil fuel technologies, by contrast to renewables, have a slower learning curve, and also compete with resource depletion curves as deposits are drawn down and new deposits must be found and accessed. From a 2007 paper by Farmer and Trancik, at the Santa Fe Institute, Dynamics of Technology Development in the Energy Sector :
                  Fossil fuel energy costs follow a complicated trajectory because they are influenced both by trends relating to resource scarcity and those relating to technology improvement. Technology improvement drives resource costs down, but the finite nature of deposits ultimately drives them up. […] Extrapolations suggest that if these trends continue as they have in the past, the costs of reaching parity between photovoltaics and current electricity prices are on the order of $200 billion
                  Renewable electricity prices are likely to continue to drop, particularly for solar, which has a faster learning curve and is earlier in its development than wind. The IEA expects utility scale solar prices to average 4 cents per kwh around the world by mid century, and that solar will be the number 1 source of electricity worldwide. (Full report here.)
                  Bear in mind that the IEA has also underestimated the growth of solar in every projection made over the last decade.
                  Germany’s Fraunhofer Institute expects solar in southern and central Europe (similar in sunlight to the bulk of the US) to drop below 4 cents per kwh in the next decade, and to reach 2 cents per kwh by mid century. (Their report is here. If you want to understand the trends in solar costs, read this link in particular.)
                  Analysts at wealth management firm Alliance Bernstein put this drop in prices into a long term context in their infamous “Welcome to the Terrordome” graph, which shows the cost of solar energy plunging from more than 10 times the cost of coal and natural gas to near parity. The full report outlines their reason for invoking terror. The key quote:
                  At the point where solar is displacing a material share of incremental oil and gas supply, global energy deflation will become inevitable: technology (with a falling cost structure) would be driving prices in the energy space.
                  They estimate that solar must grow by an order of magnitude, a point they see as a decade away. For oil, it may in fact be further away. Solar and wind are used to create electricity, and today, do not substantially compete with oil. For coal and natural gas, the point may be sooner.
                  Unless solar, wind, and energy storage innovations suddenly and unexpectedly falter, the technology-based falling cost structure of renewable electricity will eventually outprice fossil fuel electricity across most of the world. The question appears to be less “if” and more “when”.
                  – See more at:


                  • Glenn Stehle says:


                    The rhetorical strategy which you employ is what is known as “lying by omission.”

                    What is omitted is the fact that coal and natural gas plants must be built regardless of what the wind and solar capacity is. This unpleasant reality exists because coal and natural gas end up being the electricity supply of last resort. In other words, natural gas and coal generating capacity must be constructed and on stand-by for when the wind doesn’t blow or the sun doesn’t shine.

                    If the Green Utopians want to include all the costs for them to completely wean themselves off the grid — either by building out some sort of electric storage (like batteries) or by doing without electricity during those times when the wind isn’t blowing or the sun isn’t shining — then we can talk.

                  • Nick G says:

                    rhetorical strategy which you employ

                    You can disagree without being insulting. Of course, trying to insult your debate partner will alienate the rest of the audience, especially when the rest of the argument (on which the insult is based) is just wrong.

                    coal and natural gas plants must be built regardless of what the wind and solar capacity is.

                    No. That’s just not true. This is a long discussion, but here’s an introduction:

                    Variance isn’t the same thing as unpredictability/unreliability. Wind output can be predicted to a large degree, which allows planning, and reduces or eliminates a need for spinning reserves.

                    As we add multiple windfarms, presumably with output either non-correlated or only partly correlated, the ratio of variance to mean output falls sharply. Also, many windfarms are negatively correlated, so that careful site selection reduces system variance.

                    Geographic balancing between parts of the grid only requires transmitting balancing amounts, not the whole load. A cost optimized grid will not have world-girdling, massive transmission lines.

                    Only a small % of a region’s wind power would need to be transferred between regions in order to provide balancing, and possibly not as far as one might think. Sometimes it’s just a matter of a number of sub-regions getting their power, on average, 100 miles from their west, rather than 100 miles from their east, and in effect you’ve transferred power from the western edge of the overall region to the eastern.

                    We really don’t need much more peak capacity – perhaps none at all for many years, with good time-of-day pricing and DSM. That renders most of this argument moot, at least as a boundary: we can use existing generation if we have to as a backup.

                    Wind farm peak capacity credits are a little like getting a dog to talk: the interesting thing isn’t how well the dog talks, but that it talks at all. The fact that even a small cluster of wind farms can have a 1/3 of average capacity credit, or wind at a regional level have an average 55% credit, is important.

                    I see local wind capacity credit as solving roughly 40% of the diurnal intermittency problem; long-distance transmission solving about 30%, and DSM solving the rest. DSM alone could make an enormous contribution: think 220M EV’s (with 2.2TW peak demand or output) doing a dance of load balancing with the grid. This doesn’t even touch the legacy peak capacity which could provide backup – this we’d want to minimize to minimize CO2 emissions, but that wouldn’t be hard with DSM as a short-term factor: we’d only need it for very unusual, long-term lulls.

                    Biomass would be enormously useful for grid stability. Biomass is an obvious, and workable, candidate for the job of providing backup for seasonal lulls in wind & solar production. OTOH, it’s not necessary.

                    Solutions for seasonal lulls in renewable production include overbuilding; production of hydrogen, ammonia, methane or other synthetic hydrocarbons with surplus electricity; compressed air storage; pumped storage; nuclear; overbuilt geothermal; etc, etc, etc.

                    There are a number of workable solutions to intermittency. Some are cheaper than others, some combinations are more optimal than others, but there are wide variety of ways to skin this cat.

                  • Regarding estimating wind, I use the phrase “predictable unpredictability”

                    see The Oil Conundrum

                  • Glenn Stehle says:


                    If you want to impress me with your hallowed renewables revolution, then write me a check.

                    This, of course, is never what you Green Utopians do. Instead what you do is to get the long arm of the law to reach out and force somebody else to pay for your renewables Promised Land.

                    Engineers like myself tend to be of a consequentialist mindset. What this means is that proven, demonstrated performance talks, and bullshit walks.

                    For proven, demonstrated performance on the cost of renewables we have to look no further than Germany, or Spain before it.

                    When we take a look at Spain’s experience with renewables what we find is that:

                    °°°°The total over-cost – the amount paid over the cost that would result from buying the electricity generated by the renewable power plants at the market price – that has been incurred from 2000 to 2008 (adjusting by 4% and calculating its net present value [NPV] in 2008), amounts to 7,918.54 million
                    Euros (appx. $10 billion USD).

                    °°°°The total subsidy spent and committed (NPV adjusted by 4%) to these three renewable sources [photovaltaics, wind and mini-hydro] amounts to 28,671 million euros ($36 billion USD).

                    °°°°The price of a comprehensive electricity rate (paid by the end consumer) in Spain would have to be increased 31% to be able to repay the historic debt generated by this rate deficit mainly produced by the subsidies to renewables, according to Spain’s energy regulator.

                    °°°°Spanish citizens must therefore cope with either an increase of electricity rates or increased taxes (and public deficit).


                  • Caelan MacIntyre says:

                    “You can disagree without being insulting. Of course, trying to insult your debate partner will alienate the rest of the audience, especially when the rest of the argument (on which the insult is based) is just wrong.” ~ Nick G (in response to Glenn)

                    If you don’t speak about the wrongness/dubiousness of a tax-coerced/-hostaged public for your oft-expressed alternative car (‘EV’) or alternative-energy tax-dependent/coercive-government-dependent strategies, and ignore/hand-wave/omit much of the issues surrounding the car, itself, then that looks like a lack of ethics by omission, and you appear to do that, Nick G.

                    Do you truly know or care about the difference between right and wrong or just the ones where they suit you to?

                    If any of this applies to you, then kindly don’t insult us by expecting us to pretend your omissions are somehow absent.

                    ~ Your Cae

                  • Dennis Coyne says:

                    Hi Glenn,

                    Widely dispersed wind and solar requires about 1% backup if regions are tied together with a high voltage DC grid. The “backup” spinning reserve has already been built in the form of hydro, nuclear, and peaking natural gas plants.





                    Not sure who the Green Utopians are, but any extreme position is easily picked apart.

                    A transition to non-fossil fuel energy will have to occur, if it does not there will be high prices for electricity due to rising costs for coal and natural gas. Personally I think we should do more research on nuclear power that will safely shut down in the absence of electrical power for cooling the reactors. At this point it is not clear that nuclear power is much cheaper than wind and solar, but it eventually could be used for backup with safer design and a design that reduces nuclear waste (possibly utilizing some of the waste in the reactors).

                    Fernando suggests waiting for costs to come down (or for fossil fuel prices to rise.

                    Such a strategy could be very disruptive because the transition will take time, it will not happen overnight.

                    The transition can begin in wealthier countries and the poor in those countries can be protected with tax breaks/or subsidies, this allows progress and some of the problems to be worked out.

                  • Glenn Stehle says:

                    Dennis Coyne said:

                    The “backup” spinning reserve has already been built in the form of hydro, nuclear, and peaking natural gas plants.

                    True, the Green Utopian policymakers did predict that they could complel the German people to use less electricy. This did not happen. (see this reference, or the graph I have attached below).


                    So the construction of new and additional backup campacity has been required, either that or the import of backup electricty from other countries who have built out the spare capacity.

                    Then there’s the cost of maintaining and keeping operational all the existing standby infrastructure which is required for backup.

                    And on top of that is the fact that gas-, coal- and nuclear-fired power plants cannot be turned on with the flip of a switch, on those days when there’s ice, snow, clouds or when the wind stops blowing.

                    So anyway you cut it, what you wind up with is a great deal of double cost, unless of course the Green Utopians are willing to completely wean themselves off the grid.

                    The deliberate downplaying of the true, comprehensive cost of renewables I find objectionable and dishonest. It’s a sales pitch, and has very little to do with a search for truth or knowledge.

                    Whose lies, then, am I to believe? Those of the Green Utopians? Those of the Carbon Utopians? Or neither?

                • Techsan says:

                  Here’s some evidence: Austin just agreed to buy 450 MW (half of a good-sized nuclear plant) of PV electricity for under 4 cents per KWH. Cheaper than the all-in cost for natural gas power, even though gas is really cheap these days.

                  • I’m afraid your “evidence” doesn’t cut it with experienced engineers. I found an article about the Austin power purchasing plans, and I noticed the following

                    “Austin Energy staff projects that contracting for between 400 and 450 MW will cost the average residential ratepayer an additional $8 to $11 in 2017 and result in a net loss to the utility of $9 million. In comparison, it projects that contracting for up to 300 MW would have cost the average residential ratepayer an additional $3 to $7 in 2017 and resulted in a net loss of $3.7 million.”

                    – See more at:


                  • Don Wharton says:

                    The nominal costs from a natural gas power plant might be closer to two cents a KWH now. If we include the implicit costs from climate change Techsan is almost certainly correct. Note that Texas is in general an area at significant risk to its agriculture from climate change. I have a friend with a farm in Texas. My recommendation to him is to sell it. There is a good chance that the land will be seen as having little value in the next 10 to 20 years.

                  • Techsan says:

                    Note that Fernando’s complaint involves a really trivial amount of money: less than $1 per month for an electric customer.

            • Fred Magyar says:

              and a Guatemalan chemist will invent THE battery made from banana peels.

              If you want batteries there might be better ways.


              Why you should listen
              With a bachelors in Creative Studies and a Ph.D. in Inorganic Chemistry, Angela Belcher has made a career out of finding surprising and innovative solutions to energy problems.

              As head of the Biomolecular Materials Group at MIT, Belcher brings together the fields of materials chemistry, electrical engineering and molecular biology to engineer viruses that can create batteries and clean energy sources. A MacArthur Fellow, she also founded Cambrios Technologies, a Cambridge-based startup focused on applying her work with natural biological systems to the manufacture and assembly of electronic, magnetic and other commercially important materials.

              • Nick G says:

                Yes, there’s an enormous amount of work going on to develop better batteries, solar, etc., etc.

                But…we shouldn’t let that obscure the bigger point: existing tech is more than good enough, cheap enough, scalable enough. EVs are cheaper than ICE’s. Solar and wind are cheaper than FF’s. This is true in very many places even without taking into account the very real costs of traditional forms of pollution, climate change, supply insecurity, etc. It’s overwhelmingly true when you properly account for all costs.

                We have all the tech we need, right now, to transition away from expensive, scarce, risky, polluting FFs.

                • Fred Magyar says:

                  My point was more about thinking and doing things outside the BAU box, even if existing technology already works. I still think we need massively radical paradigm change to the way we have been doing business.

                  • Nick G says:

                    I agree.

                    Still, it’s not a good idea to enable those who are fighting a rear-guard action against the transition away from FF. We need to be clear that the emphasis should be on immediate implementation of existing tech, not waiting for future developments from R&D.

                  • Caelan MacIntyre says:

                    A transition away from fossil fuels doesn’t have to mean a transition to other forms of undemocratic centralized industrial-government control and the ecocidal and homicidal transgressions that come from it, and it is this sort of control that seems to underlay your every approach/strategy, whose fundamental wrongness you conveniently seem to omit.

                    Your criminals are not going to solve their own crimes and if you think so, you may be working for them.

                • I guess we can transition if we use a virus to kill around 5 billion people. That sure stretches hydro, geothermal and nuclear.

                  • Fred Magyar says:

                    I guess we could… good thing not everyone sees the world through your eyes!

                  • I’m not proposing anything other than waiting. If costs are going to drop as much as you say it’s definitely worth it to wait a few years before doing anything. 😐

            • islandboy says:

              Invenergy’s Grand Ridge battery energy storage facility wins 2015 innovation award

              With a 31.5 MW power rating, Invenergy’s Grand Ridge Energy Storage is the second-largest lithium project in the world. The project began commercial operation in May and utilizes BYD America’s Containerized Energy Storage System.

              Grand Ridge is the largest renewable energy center in the world with wind, solar and advanced-energy storage in one location. In addition to the 31.5 MW storage unit, Grand Ridge houses a 210 MW wind farm; a 20 MW solar project; and a second, 1.5 MW energy storage project…. [snip]

              Later this year, Invenergy expects to start commercial operation of its Beech Ridge Storage Facility in West Virginia. The facility will house 31.5 MW of battery storage, complementing the existing 100.5 MW of existing wind energy. The Beech Ridge facility will bring Invenergy’s total operating storage capacity to more than 64.5 MW.

              Quick, quick! Somebody send these people the memo and let them know that “Renewables can’t cut it” and that they are wasting the money of the taxpayers of Illinois and West Virginia!

              When I just became aware of Peak Oil back in late 2007, any talk of such a project would have been considered pure fantasy since, many of us thought the collapse of civilization as we know it, would be well underway by now!

              Each day collapse is averted brings us closer to the day that collapse will not be due to a shortage of oil.

              • Glenn Stehle says:

                The bottom line, however, is that just like in Germany and just like in Spain, none of this wonderful stuff happens without massive government subsidies:

                EIA Report: Subsidies Continue to Roll In For Wind and Solar
                MARCH 18, 2015

                I have no problem with subsidies for renewables. If the public is given honest information about the comprehensive cost of renewables and decides it is worth that cost, then so be it. What I have a problem with is:

                1) The dishonesty of the Green Utopians in telling the public what the real, comprehensive cost for renewables is, and

                2) Forcing the poorest and most politically disenfranchised segment of society to pay for the cost of renewables.

                • islandboy says:

                  Glenn, are you a troll of some sort or something? Why are you quoting from a source that is a creation of the fossil fuel industry interests like Charles G. Koch? I just spent a considerable amount of time formulating a response to you and towards the end of my response I started having doubts about the accuracy of the graphic you posted, which led me to do a search on this Institute for Energy Research. Here is the top result from Google search:


                  You, my dear sir, are busted! After all I have written on this blog about the corrupting influence of FF money, you come and quote from a FF propaganda web site to me? I feel you have insulted my intelligence and hereby request that you ignore anything that I post on this blog as I will be ignoring your posts from now on.

                  For the benefit of others, since I already composed this, here goes:

                  The fact is that unsubsidized solar PV will soon be competitive with NG in some markets and some time later, will be competitive with coal when storage is left out of the equation and eventually competitive with coal even with diurnal storage factored in.

                  My own island nation, pretty much an economic basket case, has been borrowing money to finance fiscal and trade deficits. Some of this money is used to buy oil which is used in ways that do not generate enough money to pay the loans back. Against that background, ain’t nobody getting any subsidies around here and yet solar PV is doing reasonably well.

                  It would do better but, understandably, the local (privately owned) utility is not about to embrace a competitive technology with open arms. As a result there’s a bureaucratic process that one is supposed to go through before one connects equipment that can feed power to the grid, that is, any grid tied inverter. You are free to go off grid but, all off grid systems need batteries, are more complicated and as a result more costly. On top of that, off grid systems have to compromise on some aspect or the other, unless money is no object.

                  Even in this unsubsidized environment, with bureaucratic restrictions limiting the installations of the least costly systems, my unofficial data suggests that the installed amount has more than doubled over the past three years and amounts to over 7.5 MW. That amount only includes systems for which the capacity is publicly available, accounting for slightly more than half of the approximately 150 systems identified, most of them in the capital city.

                  Depending on the jurisdiction, growth may be a result of subsidies or, it may be a result of high costs of traditional sources of electricity. To be frank, in the US, the main incentives are Federal and State tax credits coupled with Net Metering, which allows PV installations to use the grid like a battery without having to pay anything for that facility. Even then, Net Metering is being fought by utilities in several states.

                  This is the point at which I got suspicious of the data posted by Glenn (Koch) since the solar industry associations in the US have views diametrically opposed to the “Institute for Energy Research”. These trade associations are not trying to hide and are carrying out advocacy for their industry in an open and transparent way. The same cannot be said for the FF industries hiding behind the “Institute for Energy Research”.

                  • Glenn Stehle says:


                    I really don’t have a dog in this fight. I’m too old to get all bitter and bent out of shape about these things, and am enough of a realist to realize to do so wouldn’t make any difference anyway. Nevertheless, I still remain curious about human behavior, and what interests me is trying to figure out why it is the Green Utopians, with so many factors stacked in their favor, are losing so badly in the marketplace of ideas.

                    And by looking at your comment, it becomes pretty clear as to why.

                    To begin with, your first rhetorical strategy is to attack the messenger — the Koch brothers and me — and not the message. What you never get around to, however, is countering the substantive part of the argument, which is that “none of this wonderful stuff [with renewables] happens without massive government subsidies.” The facts are pretty straight forward: Do renewables receive massive state subsidies or not?

                    Yours is an age-old rhetorical strategy: paint the enemy with the face of evil, and having done that, you deftly dodge responding to the factual elements of his argument. Nevertheless, the neutral elements in the community are not confused so easily, and your strategy ends up being nothing more than preaching to the choir.

                    For the rest of your agument, it’s pretty mucn a composite of distortions and partial truths. Nevertheless, it has just enough truth to it to be versisimilar, at least for the choir.

                    For instance, sure, “unsubsidized solar PV will soon be competitive with NG in some markets.” And I don’t doubt, on the island you live on, the veracity of your claim that “ain’t nobody getting any subsidies around here and yet solar PV is doing reasonably well.”

                    But here’s the rub. Islands, like Hawaii for instance, import oil to make electricity. This is very expensive.

                    A barrel of oil currently costs about $50 and has about six times the energy content that an MCF of natural gas does, which currently costs about $2.75 per MCF. So energywise, oil is currently three times as expensive as natural gas.

                    For this reason, the average end-user price of electricity in Hawaii in July 2015 was $0.261 per KwH (down from $0.347 in July 2014, when the price of a barrel of oil was much higher).

                    But most Americans don’t live on islands like Hawaii. They live in places like Texas, where the average end-user price of electricity in July 2015 was only $0.085, or New York, where it was $0.159.

                    So once again, your argument, when subjected to empirical scrutiny, cracks and crumbles under the pressures of reality like clay in a season of drought.

                    There was, however, one thing which you said which is quite true. To wit:

                    You are free to go off grid but, all off grid systems need batteries, are more complicated and as a result more costly. On top of that, off grid systems have to compromise on some aspect or the other, unless money is no object.

                  • islandboy says:

                    Critics Twist Truth In Campaign To Kill Solar Energy Industry

                    I have been interested in politics since I was about fifteen or sixteen when, I started reading the opinion columns in the local paper in addition to what was reported in the lead news stories. I was academically inclined enough to continue my secondary eduction through what is called sixth form in the UK based educational system, an additional two years of “Advanced Level” studies, past the fifth form (grade eleven) where most people end their secondary education. Up to fifth form most students take at least roughly six subjects including math and English, with really gifted students taking up to thirteen. In sixth form one usually takes three or four “A” levels and a non elective called “General Paper”. In my GP class Straight and Crooked Thinking by Robert Henry Thouless was required reading. I found a copy of The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich on a bookshelf at home and read half way through the 1200 plus pages of it so, I was able to cite examples from it during my GP exam. In my first and only year at the local university, I had to read How to Lie with Statistics by Darrell Huff

                    The result is that by the age of about nineteen I was well informed about how some people are able to mislead other people to further their own agenda. Hence it is not only important to understand what is said but, who is saying it and what their sometimes hidden agenda is. I am pro renewable and make no attempt to hide it and I find organizationals like “The Heartland Institute” and now the “Institute for Energy Research” with their thinly veiled facade of impartiality, insidious.

                    You sir. are far too well read to not know exactly what you were citing and what their undisclosed agenda is. The image below is from the blog post linked to at the top of this comment. It is from the web site of the Solar Energy Industries Association, no full disclosure necessary.

                    Edit: The IER graphic is very instructive as to what the Koch led FF interests perceive as the biggest threat to their interests. Just look at the height of the bar and it indicates how much of a threat they perceive. It would seem that they perceive solar as the most significant threat. I wonder why?

                  • Glenn Stehle says:

                    islandboy said:

                    The result is that by the age of about nineteen I was well informed about how some people are able to mislead other people to further their own agenda.

                    No truer words were ever spoken.

                    But, reardless of what you might believe, you are not the opposite of the Koch brothers.

                    What you are is the mirror image of the Koch brothers.

                    I have just demonstrated how you twist and distort the truth, custom tailoring it to fit your agenda, and your only defence is to point out that the Koch brothers do it too?

                    Just because the long arm of the federal government reaches out to intervene in the fossil fuel business (I, of all people, would never challenge the veracity of this claim), this means the state should intervene in the renewables business too? Well, OK. But if you want to make an illiberal argument for big government and government control of energy production, then make it.

                    I’m not entirely opposed to government intervention, but I do believe the bar for the compelling-state-interest-test should be set rather high.


                    For this reason I’m probably just as close to Caelan MacIntyre’s position as I am to yours and the other control freaks, like the Koch brothers, even though, just like yourself, the state control part of the Kochs’ argument is well hidden underneath many layers of what George Orwell called “blackwhite” and “doublethink.”)

                • Don Wharton says:

                  Glenn, for shame! You have posted propaganda from the right-wing extreme? Why? Do you really want us to presume that this represents your views?

                  • Glenn Stehle says:


                    Once again, you employ the same rhetorical strategy that islandboy does, which is to attack the messenger and not the message.

                    Do renewables receive massive state subsidies or do they not?

                  • Don Wharton says:


                    Come on now. You posted something that massively misrepresented the facts concerning subsidies. If you are reading others on this forum you have to know both about the massive subsidies afforded to the fossil fuel industry and the wonderful shared value created from the prior subsides to wind and solar. We are rapidly reaching a point where renewable energy will be the least cost alternative for most of the world. You have to know about the implicit subsidy to the fossil fuel industry implicit in our not charging them for the epidemic of asthma, the mercury pollution of our oceans, the possible extinction of half of all existing species and the blizzard of other harms documented for a future with excessive climate change.

                    Beyond that the subsidies for wind and solar are being rapidly reduced everywhere as the strategic goals are being achieved. There is no US investment tax credit for wind now. The 30% ITC for solar will end after December 2016.

                    I am most certainly attacking the misrepresentations of your post. Beyond that the readers of this forum deserve to know where you stand. Do you really think that the obvious subsidies to fossil fuels should be ignored? Do you really want us to not count the value to society that have been achieved from past subsidies to wind and solar? Do you really want the ancient history of subsidies in 2013 to be taken as a relevant measure of where subsidies stand now? Are you really so thin skinned that you want our questions about where you stand to be taken as a personal attack on you? Reality matters. Will you acknowledge what is real in the here and now?

                  • Glenn Stehle says:


                    Well again, reading your comment makes it very obvious why you’re getting your dick knocked in the dirt by the Carbon Utopians in the marketplace of ideas.

                    For instance, you charge that I “posted something that massively misrepresented the facts concerning subsidies.” But of course you never marshall any empirical evidence to back up your charge. “Guilty as charged!” really doesn’t work for me, and apparently it doesn’t work for most Americans either, although it appears to be quite popular in Green Utopian circles.

                    And “the wonderful shared value created from the prior subsides to wind and solar.” Well I guess that’s right, at least as long as “we” can get the long arm of the law to reach out and force the poorest and most politically disenfranchised to pay the subsidies for all that “wonderful shared value.”

                    And then you ask, “Do you really think that the obvious subsidies to fossil fuels should be ignored?”

                    Well no. Did I ever say that? The rehetorical strategy you are using here is what is known as “straw manning.” I mean, really, Don, is it possible for you Green Utopians to make an argument that is not based on rhetological fallacies?

                    And then you bemoan the fact “that the subsidies for wind and solar are being rapidly reduced everywhere.”

                    Gosh! Why do you reckon that is?

                    For as you correctly conclude, “Reality matters.”

                  • Don Wharton says:

                    Well Glenn I guess you have fully outted yourself as someone who fully endorses crackpot extremism. Reality based thinking will always win in the end. Have a good day.

                • Fred Magyar says:

                  I have no problem with subsidies for renewables. If the public is given honest information about the comprehensive cost of renewables and decides it is worth that cost, then so be it. What I have a problem with is:

                  1) The dishonesty of the Green Utopians in telling the public what the real, comprehensive cost for renewables is, and

                  2) Forcing the poorest and most politically disenfranchised segment of society to pay for the cost of renewables.

                  Well I have a really big problem with the profound dishonesty and the entrenched interests of the fossil fuel companies. They have been getting a free ride for a very long time. They get massive subsidies, do not pay the full costs of their activities. They are causing irreparable harm to the environment and have been lying through their teeth for years about what they have known with regards climate change. I have zero sympathy for their disingenuous and blatant anti renewables agenda!

                  Circular Economy Systems Thinking
                  Ken Webster, Head of Innovation, Ellen MacArthur Foundation speaking in March 2014 at the University of Bradford.

                  If prices are not reflecting full costs the market is not behaving rationally.


                  • Glenn Stehle says:

                    Fred Magyar said:

                    Well I have a really big problem with the profound dishonesty and the entrenched interests of the fossil fuel companies.

                    Well I do too, but have you ever head the old saw about how “two wrongs don’t make a right”?

              • How much did this award winning battery cost? Did you notice the cost per kWh to the customer isn’t mentioned? As far as I can see renewables don’t cut it. They need subsidies. And we have an emerging corporate parasite peddling electro-heroin to the masses.😐

  16. Enno Peters says:

    Just a quick update on the NDIC numbers.
    For me the biggest surprise was a steeper drop than I expected (20 k bopd vs 10 k I expected). The main reason for the bigger drop was that just 93 wells were producing for the first time in August, vs 136 in July. I guess that this was caused by the low oil prices during August. More wells were spudded (121), so for the first time since last November, the “spudded but not yet completed inventory” rose.

    As shown below, wells brought online so far this year were good (measured by 1st and first 3 calendar months of cumulative production) on average, but not abnormally so.

    • Enno Peters says:

      Wells spudded, wells starting producing, and my 2 measures of the fracklog.

      • Enno Peters says:

        And a familiar graph showing the contribution from wells starting production in different years.

      • Enno Peters says:

        From the Director’s cut
        “At the end of August there were an estimated 993 wells2 waiting on completion services,”

        There is quite an elaborate disclaimer included with this number.
        I belief this number is incorrect, based on the same and detailed individual well status data. I estimate that by the end of August 1014 wells were spudded (see above graph), but not yet completed, and it would highly surprise me if just (1014-993) 21 of them were still being drilled, given the rig count. My number could be wrong with a few wells, but I don’t think this can explain the full gap. In the past this number in the reports has been proven inaccurate, and I therefore think the disclaimer is appropriate..

        • Dennis Coyne says:

          Hi Enno,

          Thanks for the update, the August numbers match my Bakken model pretty well, the model had been running below the Bakken output data through July. If the wells added per month gradually rise to 118 new wells per month (an increase of 5 each month until Jan 2016) and remain at 118 new wells per month through Jan 2017 we get the scenario in the chart below. Bakken output would be relatively flat through Jan 2017. Of course we have no idea how many new wells will be added each month in the future, it will depend on oil prices (also impossible to predict). New wells added per month plotted on right axis.

          • Greenbub says:

            People used to talk about how decline rates, lack of financing and hedges rolling off were going to decimate American shale. Guess not?

            • Dennis Coyne says:

              Hi Greenbub,

              I expected the well completion rates would fall to much lower levels than they have so far. If the Bakken completion rates are lower than 70 wells per month, output will fall pretty quickly, for the Eagle Ford any completion rate less than about 100 new wells per month will cause steep decline.

              At present the LTO focused oil companies are starting to cut back on CAPEX due to low oil prices, by December we might see much lower well completion rates (aka new wells added per month) and then LTO decline will begin in earnest.

              If OPEC chooses not to cut output in December and oil prices remain $55/b or lower until mid 2016 or later, we will see significant declines in the Bakken and Eagle Ford in the first quarter of 2016.

              Below is an Eagle Ford scenario with 100 new wells per month from Feb 2016 to Jan 2017 with a ramp down from 170 wells per month to 100 wells per month from Oct 2015 to Feb 2016 (170, 150, 130, 110, 100). Output drops by about 450 kb/d from Sept 2015 to Jan 2017 in this scenario.

            • Dennis Coyne says:

              Hi Greenbub,

              The North Dakota Bakken/Three Forks output will fall bay about 300 kb/d from Aug 2015 to Jan 2017 if the new wells added fall by 7 wells per month to a completion rate of 60 new wells per month from Jan 2016 to Jan 2017. Scenario in chart below is for the North Dakota Bakken/Three Forks.

            • I don’t know about decimate. Decimating means killing one in ten, right? Did we see a 10 % drop in personnel, rigs, completions? I suspect it’s more like 50 %? What do we call it when we get rid of half? Decapitate?

          • Dennis Coyne says:

            Interesting article on Eagle Ford from August 2015, it estimates about 1800 drilled uncompleted (DUC) Eagle Ford wells at the end of July 2015, at least through August the number of wells added to the oil well schedule in the Eagle Ford has remained pretty high, the average wells added per month has been 196 new wells per month from Jan through August, with the most recent 3 month average at 218 new wells per month and 239 wells added in August. Link to article below:


            If we assume 170 new wells per month are added to the Eagle Ford producing wells each month and that 70 new wells are drilled each month, the DUC wells would last for another 16 months. The most recent Eagle Ford oil rig count is 84 rigs see


            If we assume the oil wells added to the schedule are producing and that the new wells added each month fall quickly (by October 2015) to 170 new wells per month and then 170 new wells per month are added until Jan 2017 we get the scenario in the chart below. As always we do not know the future well completion rate, we can only guess. If this guess is roughly correct output would be about 1400 kb/d in Jan 2017 a fall of about 100 kb/d from the Sept model result of 1500 kb/d.

            • AlexS says:

              Baker Hughes has a stricter definition of active rigs. They include only those rigs that are really drilling (and not moved).
              Besides, Baker Hughes’ Eagle Ford Rig Count covers 14 counties. “The rig count published on includes a 30 county area impacted by Eagle Ford development”, which I think is a too wide area.
              BTW, EIA DPR “Eagle Ford region” covers 23 counties

              BHI latest numbers for EFS:
              oil rigs: 67
              gas rigs: 12
              miscelaneous: 1
              Total: 80

              oil rigs: 84
              gas rigs: 13
              miscelaneous: 1
              Total: 98

              • Dennis Coyne says:

                Hi AlexS,

                I am not familiar with the Eagle Ford area and cannot say. It might be that the EIA’s 23 county area makes more sense, but at least in August 2015 the RRC of Texas has over 200 wells per month being completed in the Eagle Ford play.

                The RRC includes 26 counties in its Eagle Ford Graphic.


                Also note that the web page I used has zero rigs in 10 of the 30 counties, so perhaps the rig count is correct.

                Let’s say Baker Hughes is the correct count at 67 oil rigs (I agree that 30 counties is too much, but think 14 counties is too low), at least 67 new wells per month can be drilled with 67 rigs (probably 100 new wells would be more realistic), so 170 wells completed per month would need 103 wells completed from the DUC list. If 1800 is the correct estimate for DUCs on August 1 2015, then over the 16 months from August 2015 to Jan 2017 only 1648 DUC wells would be completed so there is plenty of well inventory to make such a scenario possible. Whether oil companies will choose to do so will depend on oil prices, the completion rate will probably be less than 170 new wells per month if oil prices remain under $55/b. I am surprised the completion rate in August was as high as it was, the completion rate from Feb to May 2015 was about 150 new wells per month, that might be the average completion rate from Sept through December as well.

                Time will tell.

                • Ves says:

                  Hi Dennis,
                  Do you know how data are obtained in BH report? Whose rigs are we counting? Baker Hughes?

                  • I have no idea how Baker Hughes obtains their numbers but you can ask them.

                    All questions on the Baker Hughes Rig Count and Well Count should be e-mailed to: Oilfield Knowledge Center

                    Please direct all other inquiries or questions to our main number at: 713-439-8600

                    But the count includes all rigs, not just Baker Hughes Rigs. I am not at all sure whether Baker Hughes even rents rigs or not. Rigs, I believe, are owned by different companies that rent them out.

                    If you go to Current Active Drilling Rig List posted by the NDIC, the first column “Rig” indicates the owner of the rig, along with the owner number. The second column “Operator” indicates the company that is renting the rig. I don’t see the name Baker Hughes listed anywhere.

                  • Dennis Coyne says:

                    Hi Ves,

                    I agree with Ron that the rigs are all rigs in the area reported by Baker Hughes. Beyond that I just take the data as is. Note that the RRC of Texas says there are 26 counties in the Eagle Ford Play, Baker Hughes only reports 14 of these counties, so they are missing some rigs. The source I used counts 30 counties, but 10 of these 30 had zero counts for rigs. I do not know the counties in Texas, so we would have to investigate further. I don’t think rig count is all that useful without knowing how many drilled uncompleted wells (aka the frack log) there are, I would use 75 rigs as an estimate of the oil rigs (average of 67 and 84).

                    Note to everyone. The chart above used some older output data estimates which have been revised there is a new chart down the thread with updated estimates (from June 2015), output was about 1600 kb/d in March 2015. I expect output has remained this high or higher for June to Sept as 200 new wells per month were completed on average over those months, up from about 160 new wells per month over the previous 4 month period.

                  • Ves says:

                    Hi Dennis,

                    Yeah, I know that rig count is not that useful in terms of immediate oil production but it could be useful in terms of identifying the trends in drilling activity. But I was more curious if anyone knows exactly how BH obtains data on rigs. But looks like it is another “black box” type of information in the industry. Think logically why you think a private drill rig company would disclose proprietary information about their activity to another private company let alone a company in different country? If I am drill rig operator in Canada and receive a call from BH to inquire about current active rigs why I would even want to talk to them? I would put phone headset close to speakers so they can listen to SPA music until they hang up, like I do to all telemarketers.

                  • sunnnv says:

                    go chase down the FAQ at their page,
                    and snoop around on the RigData site
                    (link on the BakerHughes rig count page)
                    You might be able to get a 30 day free trial.


                    n.b. back when BH had the monopoly on roller cone drill bits, it was trivial for them, their sales guys went to every rig to deliver bits. They still have 30-40% market share.

                    Don’t think BH ever was in the rig business, but involved in (and often developed) dang near everything that gets pushed into a hole: bits, Measurement While Drilling tools, liner/casing hangers, mud, etc.

                • As you’ll recall, I mentioned drilling and holding wells un completed until prices rise looked attractive for companies with the financial strength to invest and wait.

                  I played around with a spreadsheet and some cases had positive results if completion was held for up to three years.

                  I think I built that spreadsheet early this year, but thus far I don’t see changes to the outlook. Prices came down, the rigs are a bit more efficient, and the outlook continues to be higher prices in 2016.

                  If I owned some of those wells I would start getting my contracts and equipment lined out to do the completions in November and early December, get rock bottom prices. The wells would have to be ready to produce by mid January. And if prices haven’t gone up I would flow them on a very small choke, cut the initial rate to about 200 BOPD and hold that steady.

                  • coffeeguyzz says:


                    To an extent, that is exactly what a number of operators have been doing these past several months, at least in the Bakken.

                    I have been seeing individual well production numbers on other sites that clearly demonstrate choking back is occurring in many instances.

                    On this site, on the August 14, 2015 posting, Rune Likvern posting an extremely informative graph showing Slawson’s output for several years in a color coded annual output basis.
                    The very sharp, uniform drop across ALL wells started in the fall of 2014.
                    In May, 2015, coinciding with the price increase, ALL wells showed a sharp INCREASE in output.

                    The only way the output could increase is if they were being restricted in the first place.

                  • Toolpush says:


                    There was a lot of talk about choking back, due to the gas flare regulations. It is possible that wells were choked back late 2014 due to this fact. But thanks to one of our great contributor here, who posted a graph showing the rapid increase in GOR during the last few months, it appears any choking has gone by the wayside, and most if not all wells the are currently wide open.
                    A conformation or contradiction of this will be what effect we see in the decline rates over the next few months.

        • shallow sand says:

          Enno. Thanks for the information.

          Interesting how much production has been added in the first 8 months in ND despite same making little economic sense.

          At present, do you have an estimate of what percentage of 12/15 production in ND will be from wells completed in 2015? Is 500K too high of an estimate?

          When this started, I assumed that Bakken well drilling/completion would all but cease if oil prices remained low. I was very wrong.

          I also assumed conventional producers with low debt levels could outlast the highly leveraged, high decline shale companies. That is looking wrong also.

          Every US public company drilling in the Bakken is likely both cash flow negative and losing money on a GAAP basis, without even considering reserve write downs. All but 3 will have long term debt greater than 65% of SEC PDP PV10 at year end, some still drilling will be over 100% long term debt/PDP PV10.

          The old “rules” are out the window, meaning those of us who will not and/or cannot play by the “new rules” are in trouble.

          Will be worst year, worse than 1998. Any other producers out there willing to compare 1998 to 2015? Would be interested in others views of this comparison.

          • Petro. says:

            “Would be interested in others views…”

            Shallow Sand,

            I have not been interested in precise numbers for sometime now and I have stopped looking/analyzing detailed data, but I know the macro “picture” relatively well.

            A): “When this started, I assumed that Bakken well drilling/completion would all but cease if oil prices remained low. I was very wrong.”

            No, you weren’t!
            Just a little early in your assumption, that’s all.
            Most of the debt/financing (all in some cases) permitting what you are seeing was secured and contracted well before oil price tumbled and most shale/high priced players are “all-in” just to service the debt now – no principal payment. They believe that this shall last not much longer and the regular business shall resume as before (meaning: >$100/brl)
            That is why you are seeing wells drilled at the pace they are – despite economics telling you (and I) it should not be so!

            B):”I also assumed conventional producers with low debt levels could outlast the highly leveraged, high decline shale companies. That is looking wrong also.”

            No, it is not!
            Conventional producers did not secure high levels of financing/debt akin to shale/high cost producers as they did not need to – therefore they are abiding by the “true and tested” supply/demand law(s) and, instead of levering up and spending billions in R$D and going “all inn”, they are taking a more -shall we say- economically prudent approach . Having less debt to service allows them more flexibility and they are saying: “This makes no sense. Lets stop and wait till prices rebound”.

            C).”Will be worst year, worse than 1998. Any other producers out there willing to compare 1998 to 2015? Would be interested in others views of this comparison.”

            As I said I have not analyzed the detailed data, but eventhough numbers today are the same or similar to 1998 (as you say), reason for this is very different.
            In 1998 we did not have high-priced producers (i.e.: shale and tar sand) and there was still plenty of low priced conventional oil left…(remember: we peaked in conventional production some 7-10 years later – roughly speaking). So there were 2 main reasons:
            1 – LTRO/Asia/emerging market crises- which cut demand significantly.
            2 – Russian default which influenced in two fronts:
            russian/east-european consumption dropped significantly ( remember: USSR consumption was second only to northamerican consumption until 1991. Europe was third!);
            russians were producing as much as they could for they desperately needed hard currency/dollars.
            There were smaller technical factors contributing to glut/low-demand picture (i.e.: North Sea and higher efficiency rules in europe and nAmerica in late nineties for ICE), but the above were the main.

            Today the reasons are:
            debt deflation/collapse; peaking (already) of low-priced conventional oil; incomparable demand/consumption vis-a-vis 1998 (china today consumes more than probably all EM in 1998)
            Today the “glut” is due to:
            1. – demand/economy slowing down and
            2. – production still running on QE/economy rebound after the “great recession” hype (aka: already acquired financing/junk-bond/debt)

            And that is why there shall be no rebound in prices this time around. This time peak shall arrive because we cannot afford energy anymore- because debt is not growing – because prices are LOW(not high as the conventional demand/supply law dictates!)

            You (and most others, including very smart and knowledgeable energy analysts) are having the paradox you are having, because classical economic laws/thinking is not working as before.
            We have reached “Limits to Growth”!

            Hope it helps.

            Be well,


            • Glenn Stehle says:

              Just to play devil’s advocate:

              “OPEC Sees Oil-Demand Growth Leading to Balanced Market in 2016”

              – See more at:

            • Glenn Stehle says:

              Another question is just how much cheap oil is left in places like Iran and Iraq, and whether enough political stability can be achieved to get at it:

              The world is awash in crude, but big oil companies are lining up to develop new fields in Iran even as they slash spending and abandon exploration elsewhere. One thing explains this paradox: cost.

              The Middle Eastern country is one of the cheapest places in the world to tap new oil fields and pump from existing wells. The slump in crude prices makes Iran even more attractive to investors….

              “Costs are low because they have giant fields which produce economies of scale, the terrain is mostly straightforward and reservoirs are highly prolific,” Robin Mills, a Dubai-based analyst at Manaar Energy Consulting, said by e-mail. If prices stay low, production costs could drop even further in Iran and its neighbor Iraq, he said.

              While the cost of developing an oil field in Canada or the U.S. can range between $59 and $114 a barrel, the expense in Iran doesn’t exceed $31….

              – See more at:

              • In 2001 I was drafting budgets with a $3.50 CAPEX / barrel ceiling.

                • Old Farmer Mac says:

                  ”In 2001 I was drafting budgets with a $3.50 CAPEX / barrel ceiling.”

                  This coming from an engineer who keeps telling us renewables are TOO expensive.

                  Fernando, how much do you expect a barrel of oil to sell for, in todays dollars, in another fifteen years, assuming we GIVE UP on renewables now?

                  Let’s not forget population growth and let’s not forget depletion, and let’s not forget that some countries will perhaps decide to hoard any domestic oil for domestic use rather than sell it.

                  AND LET’S NOT FORGET, it is going to take a very long time to build up a big enough renewables industry to build out the renewables infrastructure we MUST have, once oil and gas get to be prohibitively scarce and expensive.

                  It’s not all just environment and climate, it’s also about STRETCHING fossil fuel supplies and keeping the price of them down.

                  Maybe the oil and gas industry REALLY WILL be able to provide us with oh maybe a hundred and thirty million barrels a day at an affordable price twenty years from now.

                  But this old hillbilly farmer thinks the piddly amounts we are spending now on subsidies for renewables is DAMNED cheap insurance in case the oil and gas industry provides us with LESS instead of MORE.

                  • Mac, renewables are too expensive now. If your prediction that solar costs will drop 50 % in 10 years is right, then the answer is clearly to wait. Solar doesn’t compete with oil, it competes with natural gas and coal.

                    If oil prices increase as projected the obvious answer is to shift to smaller lighter gasoline hybrids. 😐

                  • Don Wharton says:

                    Fernando, wind and solar will destroy the fossil fuel industry when it drops its costs by another 50%. That reduction in cost will only be there if it is demanded by a vigorous market that is actually buying wind and solar. Your plea to wait is just a plea to destroy the possible solution for humanity.

          • Enno Peters says:


            “At present, do you have an estimate of what percentage of 12/15 production in ND will be from wells completed in 2015? Is 500K too high of an estimate? ”

            I expect that by the end of this year, the contribution from 2015 wells will be about 350 – 400 k bpod. This is based on a range of 90-120 new wells online per month for the remainder of this year.

          • gwalke says:

            “When this started, I assumed that Bakken well drilling/completion would all but cease if oil prices remained low. I was very wrong.”

            This is because 70%+ of those companies are debt vehicles going from one bond issue to the next – the price does not predict their production, as they were losing money at $100 anyway. Currently it is not in the interest of the company or their lenders to cut lending – the banks don’t want to write down their exposure after all – so the can is kicked. If other sectors start to look like a better source of yield for all that ZIRP money – or if the Fed raises rates – then there will soon be problems.

            • shallow sand says:

              gwalke. Am I wrong, or is CLR valued at an extreme premium? My math shows current per BOE enterprise value in the $90K range. Seems especially pricey given BOE is trending more towards gas and NGLs given increased SCOOP activity.

              I still cannot understand how SCOOP is at all economic, seems to me to be even worse than EFS and Bakken.

      • Dennis Coyne says:

        Hi Enno,

        Can you explain (again) the difference between the uncompleted well inventory and the estimated frac log, it seems these would be two different names for the same thing.

        It is not clear why one would be approximately half of the other. Is this because there are 500 wells in the process of being drilled (there must be some kind of multistage drill process, as there are only 70 rigs running), but these wells are not at the stage where they are waiting on completion services (which I have always assumed is mostly the fracking process, but there is probably more to it)?


  17. islandboy says:

    Watched the US Democratic Party presidential debate last night. All contenders except Jim Webb, very pro renewables and very cool on FF subsidies, with one actually stating that as president he would seek to mandate that the US move to a 100% “clean energy” grid by 2050. None of the candidates deny global warming (climate change was the actual term used), with Bernie Sanders stating outright that “climate change is real and it’s caused by human activity”. All candidates seem to place addressing CO2 emissions high on their agenda. Very stark contrast to the republican debate.

    Does anyone else here think that the balance between renewable development and FF use in the US, is somewhat (very?) dependent on who wins the White House next year? Sorry to post this here but, there is no active non oil/gas open thread at the moment.

    • Old Farmer Mac says:

      IF a Republican wins, the effect will be to slow down renewables deployment to a serious extent. The odds are much worse for getting renewables subsidies enacted or prolonged with any current R candidate in office.

      Things will be marginally better with a D in the White House but for now my opinion is that there will be too many R’s in congress for any new renewables initiatives, at least at the federal level for the near term, out to 2018 at least. However a skillful D in the WH might manage to cut some deals favorable to renewables.

      This is the first time in a long time I have not had a firm gut feeling about who will win the next presidential election this close to election day. There is still plenty of time for surprises especially with Trump in the R race but for now I don’t think he will get the nomination. He may force whoever does get it farther to the right than desirable in terms of winning the middle of the road vote.

      The D’s are showing their usual remarkable ( compared to the R’s ) party cohesion in that the other candidates failed to take the fight to HRC. They had plenty of ammo last night , had they desired to use it. It looks fairly likely to me at this time that she will get the nomination, I would bet three to two on her getting it. They used to call Reagan teflon, but she redefines the word, at least in terms of the party faithful- in public.

      In private, most of the democrats I know would be tickled pink to see another surprise candidate, somebody without high negatives due to being unknown, and yet with some charisma, get into the race.

      Class can we all spell O B A M A together ?

      None of the democrats I know really thinks Sanders can win. The others are not likely to get any traction this late in the game barring surprises.

      As things stand now, I am leaning toward predicting a republican victory- if the R’s run somebody with a little charisma and a reasonably decent personal reputation.

      The easiest R out there for HRC to beat imo would be Trump.

      • Ronald Walter says:

        Old Farmer:

        There is no disagreement, however, Senator Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, has supported subsidies for renewable energy projects.

        Republicans can at some point become more compliant and less obstructive, once given the chance, if they choose to accept the challenge.

        Most are too busy riding their polo horses and yachting on the weekend.

        Business as usual for a rich Republican.

        Senator Grassley is in the wannabe category, hardly a rich Republican, he tries hard and uses handouts to the wind energy lobby to keep everybody happy.

        He’s being used, but that doesn’t matter either.

        On another note:

        I’m not a bigamist, that spells trouble.

        • Old Farmer Mac says:

          Hi Ronald,

          I never intended to imply that you might be a bigamist but was only trying to point out that the folks who insist you can marry whoever you please are not so openminded about it that they will allow you to be married to two or more men, women, or animals of any description, in any combination,at any given time. You have my apology.

          The republicans are right about some things but generally speaking they are not going to lend much support to renewable energy.

          Grassley is an exception to the rule and can buck the R party on renewables in his state due to the nature of the state economy.

          We had an excellent D congressman here in my district, one who like Grassley could buck the party establishment due to local conditions and values.

          He lost his seat entirely because of the backlash against the Obumbler’s social policies. The R who won didn’t run against him at all, he ran against the Obumbler.

          If I remember correctly you said you are married to a fox- which I took to mean a very attractive woman. Given your personal style, I can never be SURE what you might mean at any given instant.

          I always look forward to your comments.Some of them are as good enough you ought to be getting paid, like for instance John Oliver.

    • Boomer II says:

      The political bloc favoring fossil fuels and related industries will, at some point, be outnumbered by those who stand to make (or save money) with renewables.

      While the Republicans may not actively join the renewable crusade, they may quietly not bother to support fossil fuel and related industries any longer. Coal doesn’t seem to be getting the support it used to, for example.

      Sooner or later a dying industry is an obvious dying industry to everyone.

      • I think it’s a question of perception. In Spain the electric bill shows the renewables subsidy as a separate line item. This allows each person to grasp a portion of the cost (the cost is underestimated by the formula).

        The key is to have politicians who avoid pressures by powerful corporations involved in the renewables businesses. They are fighting to get higher and higher subsidies to increase their profit outlook.

        • Glenn Stehle says:

          Fernando said:

          The key is to have politicians who avoid pressures by powerful corporations involved in the renewables businesses. They are fighting to get higher and higher subsidies to increase their profit outlook.

          This is my concern.

          The unholy alliance between the Green Utopians and German oligarchs, for instance, doesn’t seem to care how much their renewables Shangli-la costs, just so long as they can use the long arm of the law to force somebody else to pay for it.

          The oligarchs provide the political muscle, and the Green Utopians the “doing God’s work” halo behind which the robbery is veiled. It’s the moral and political philosophy of Saint Augustine writ large.

          And when this unholy alliance gets its act together, as it has in Germany, other priorities, such as social justice, are of no importance whatsoever.

          Here’s how Hannah Arendt put it in Denktagebuch:

          …that to serve the ends of action anything will do as the absolute — race, for instance, or a classless society, and so forth. All things are expedient, “anything goes.” Everything is possible… [And] that by applying the absolute or the “ideal” in general (as in Nietsche) — to an end, one first makes unjust, bestial actions possible, because the “ideal” no longer exists as a yardstick, but has become an achievable, producible end within the world.

          • Nick G says:

            Consumers get much lower prices than industrial/commercial customers around the world, in part because they’re cheaper to serve, partly because of cross-subsidies.

            And fossil fuels get much larger subsidies than renewables: a Harvard researcher put it at $.15 per kWh for coal without climate change costs, $.18 per kWh with CC costs.

            • Glenn Stehle says:

              Nick G says:

              Consumers get much lower prices than industrial/commercial customers around the world, in part because they’re cheaper to serve, partly because of cross-subsidies.

              But thanks to the unholy alliance between the Green Utopians and the German oligarchs, not in Germany. The very opposite is true, and residential customers cross-subsidize big business.

              • Nick G says:

                Oops! I meant to say that

                “Industrial/commercial companies get much lower prices than residential consumers”.

                Very big consumers are easier to serve: much lower costs per kWh for transmission, distribution, billing, etc., etc.

                And, they have much greater clout with politicians, and they can play the Competition card: “raise our prices, and we’ll be uncompetitive with companies in other countries, and have to lay off workers!”. Works every time…

              • I believe that alliance has the pope’s blessing. It’s a Holy Alliance.

                Talking about the pope, I just saw the Santiago de Cuba local communist party “religious affairs” commissar ordered the suspension of a Protestant service. This comes on the heels of orders given by Raul Castro for party officials to pack the pope’s events when the guy was in Cuba. I suspect those two guys cut a deal. The pope backs the dictatorship and the dictatorship helps the Catholic Church get market share. It’s so Franco and Pinochet, a neofascist military regime allied with the church.

              • Old Farmer Mac says:

                The big industrial customers that get relatively cheap electricity pay the VAST bulk of all the bills in Germany via taxes and wages and salaries and taxes on wages and salaries etc.

                The lifeblood of the GERMAN economy is EXPORTS.

                The Germans are smart enough, and are displaying foresight enough, to get ready NOW for the time when they will HAVE to get by without importing HUGE quantities of oil and gas on a DAILY BASIS.

                Incidentally, Germany has NOTHING to speak of to export to pay for imported fuel EXCEPT the goods produced by her exporting industries.

                I HAVE spent a couple of hours recently looking into the living standards of the German people.

                Considering the fact that the country has had a hell of a long hard haul on account of the post WWII partition, and that Germany has little in the way of mineral wealth etc, Germany is doing EXTRAORDINARILY WELL compared to just about any other country in the world.

                So – householders pay more for electricity. They live a damned sight better because they have an industrial exporting economy.

                Germany would be in as bad or worse condition as the southern European basket cases without that industrial export economic base.

                At least it’s warmer in the winter months in those places. 😉

                I don’t usually defend big business, but in this case, somebody needs to point out the actual facts.

                You have to look at the entire picture- wages, taxes, social services, unemployment, housing, resources available, etc etc.

                In every country, the people win some and lose some. In Germany, the people are winning a hell of a lot more than they are losing, everything considered.

                • The obvious answer was not to shut down nuclear reactors. I think the Germans are stupid hard working people.

                • Glenn Stehle says:

                  Old Farmer Mac says:

                  The lifeblood of the GERMAN economy is EXPORTS.

                  True enough that, but a great many question whether the German oligarch’s mercantilism is sustainable over the long run, or whether exporting Grman-made products to perennial debtor countries like Greece and the United States, on credit of course, is a winning long-range strategy.

                  Old Farmer Mac says:

                  You have to look at the entire picture- wages, taxes, social services, unemployment, housing, resources available, etc etc.

                  And if you do, what you find is that those in Germany who have to work for a living have sucked hind teat over the past 25 years, and especially over the past 11 years:

                  Net real wages in Germany have hardly risen since the beginning of the 1990s. Between
                  2004 and 2008 they even declined. This is a unique development in Germany—never
                  before has a period of rather strong economic growth been accompanied by a decline in
                  net real wages over a period of several years.


                • Glenn Stehle says:

                  Old Farmer Mac said:

                  You have to look at the entire picture- wages, taxes, social services, unemployment, housing, resources available, etc etc.

                  In every country, the people win some and lose some. In Germany, the people are winning a hell of a lot more than they are losing….

                  Well certainly the German oligarchs are winning. In fact, they’re making out like bandits. But the rest of the population? Not so much.

        • islandboy says:

          “The key is to have politicians who avoid pressures by powerful corporations involved in the renewables FF businesses. They are fighting to get higher and higher subsidies to increase their profit outlook.”

          There fixed that fer ya!

          For goodness sake, could Fernando and/or Glenn please explain to the rest of us, in what way is what they claim, any different from the tax breaks that the FF industries have been enjoying for goodness knows how long?

          When people start getting cancer, caused by emissions from solar panels and wind farms ( 😉 ) and when it turns out that Peak Oil and global warming were just big fat liberal lies, we can declare that providing incentives for renewbles was a huge mistake.

          • Glenn Stehle says:


            In this chiliastic battle between the Green Utopians and the Carbon Utopians — a battle of wrong vs. wrong, error vs. error is there ever was one — I hardly know which earthly paradise to choose.

            But I do grant you one thing, and that is that the Carbon Utopians are every bit as good of spin doctors as what the Green Utopians are.

            Michael Klare wrote an article where he does a great job of pointing out the sins of others, that is of the Carbon Utopians:

            Put together, this [ExxonMobil’s “The Outlook for Energy: A View to 2040” ] represents a dazzling vision of a future in which growing numbers of people enjoy the benefits of abundant energy and unlimited growth. You can already imagine the heartwarming TV commercials that will be generated on a massive scale to propagate such a message: pictures of hard-working individuals of all genders and hues enjoying the American Dream globally thanks to Exxon and its cohorts. Needless to say, in such imagery there will be nothing to mar the promise of unbridled prosperity for all — no horrific droughts, colossal superstorms, or mass migrations of desperate people seeking to flee devastated areas.

            But this vision, like so much contemporary advertising, is based on a lie….

            “Perpetuating the Reign of Carbon”

            Too bad Klare’s one-eyed version of truth doesn’t allow him to take an equally harsh look at the lies being peddled by the Green Utopians.

            • Doug Leighton says:

              “I hardly know which earthly paradise to choose.” L.O.L. Totally agree, it’s a difficult choice. Some days I lean toward the new golf course world, wheeling around all day in my fancy EV. Except I like to travel farther, so maybe I’ll go the other way, you know, jetting here and there via high carbon footprint Boeing boats. Sigh.

            • Techsan says:

              Okay, as a Green Utopian:

              I have 12 KW of PV on my roof, plus 12 KWH of battery backup, which powers our entire house plus two electric cars (Leaf and Volt). (And I’m an electrical engineer and PhD scientist.) Fully instrumented, and it works.

              Austin Energy just agreed to buy 450 MW of PV power at less than 4 cents per KWH, on the way to getting 55% of all electric power from renewable sources by 2025.

              Putting PV solar on your roof is a safe investment that pays 8%, tax free, inflation adjusted, and hedges your electric cost for the rest of your life. Wall Street would kill for such an investment, but it’s available to you if you have the sense to do it.

              All true; no lies here.

          • I’m not aware of any “tax breaks” we received where we were working which weren’t rational. For example, in Venezuela we were supposed to pay 60% plus income tax on profits. This made it impossible to invest at all in the marginal oil fields offered by the ministry. The ministry and pdvsa saw this problem, and created a contract structure to drop our income tax to 36 %. But that’s merely putting us in the same tax regime as other companies.

            What you call “tax breaks” are basically the changes in tax structures government’s created to allow investment as they felt was required. But the industry overall is taxed at very high rates in most locations. Never mind the fuel taxes charged in countries like the UK.

    • ChiefEngineer says:

      “Does anyone else here think that the balance between renewable development and FF use in the US, is somewhat (very?) dependent on who wins the White House next year? ”

      Absolutely, Al Gore was the environmentalist and Bush destroyed the Kyoto Protocol. Carter put solar panels on the roof of the White House. Reagan removed them. Texas, Louisiana, Kentucky, West Virginia, Alaska and North Dakota are major energy producing red states. Bush and Cheney are oil men who eagerly started war with boots on the ground in the energy rich Middle East. Republicans deny the science of global climate change.

      2050 seems to be a reasonable time frame for a transition. Also keep in mind that most transportation energy needs will have to be transferred to the grid.

      • My analysis shows George W. Bush wasn’t an oilman. He used to sell himself as one, but I consider him more of a rich kid who took up business administration and failed at it. I used to live in Texas when he was using his dad’s friends to get the Texas Rangers the stadium deal, and I knew people who knew him as well as Neal. They weren’t impressed with either one. I did hear Jeb was by far the good guy in the family.

        As for Iraq, based on the way the way was pumped up by the neocons, I got the feeling it was more of an Israel lobby job. I realize the USA has an anomalous idea about Israel, and bringing up the subject is extremely difficult. But it does need to be said. That war wasn’t pushed by oil interests, it was mainly the Israel lobby, backed by bubbas too stupid to understand Afghanistan was being left unfinished and that Bush was a retard when it came to handling a war.

        • Nick G says:

          No doubt Israel was a factor, but the Iraq war wouldn’t have happened without world dependence on ME oil.

          “‘I am saddened that it is politically inconvenient to acknowledge what everyone knows: the Iraq war is largely about oil.”

          Alan Greenspan

          • Maybe you wish to add statements by Kristol, Wolfowitz, and other members of the neocon elite?


            The WMD story was the lie they cooked up to create support for the invasion. The oil story is the cover. Behind it is the real story. The USA finds itself in a Middle East swamp because it happens to be where Israel is located, and almost everything the USA does nowadays is dictated by the Israel lobby working with the neocon Mafia.

            The others, like Cheney, are bit players in a much larger and lengthy theater play which will evntually take the USA to complete ruin. And the oil never really had a key role to play. Those 9/11 attacks were triggered by USA policy, which is mostly about sustaining an unsustainable crusade in the holy land.

            • Nick G says:

              Those 9/11 attacks were triggered by USA policy

              Yes, indeed. And what was that USA policy? It was the US response to Iraq invading Kuwait, over…..oil.

              Israel was established by the UK, after WWI. At that point the UK was deeply aware that it’s empire was entirely reliant on an oil-fueled navy, the oil for which came from…the Middle East.

              We would not be embroiled in the ME if it weren’t for oil.

              • Glenn Stehle says:


                On this one I have to throw my hat in the ring with you.

                Blaming our involvement in the ME on the Israel Lobby seems like the tail wagging the dog.

                The Jews, nevertheless, serve as a convenient scapegoat for the military-financial-petroleum complex to blame our misadventures in the ME on. And the Israel lobby seems more than happy to play along with the charade, willing for people to believe it really does wield that sort of power and influence. (For an explanation on why a small minority of Jews — the “exception” Jews, “parveneu” Jews or “court” Jews — volunteer for this role, see Hannah Arendt’s The Origins of Totalitarianism).

                And talking about comprehensive costs, it seems to me like the cost of all our military adventures in the ME would need to be included in the price of a barrel of oil.

              • No sir. I suppose most of you don’t read the original Osama bin Laden writings. I read the book, put out by the CIA, so their analysts could think properly about the organization they were trying to capture or destroy.

                Osama very clearly used a two layered logic. The lower level, used to mobilize the troops, listed 1. Israel and the abuse of Palestinians. 2. The USA backing for hedonistic and heretic dictators. 3. The way the USA continuously bombed Iraq after the swamp Arab revolt, and the way it cut off supplies to the Iraqi people.

                At a higher level, he focused the logic on the need to repel western imperialism, unite the Muslims under a Caliph to defend their society. In other words, he felt he was calling for a defensive jihad, hoping to unite the Muslims so they could choose a Caliph. The Caliph would then have the ability to call an OFFENSIVE jihad.

                The Israel factor is usually covered up or denied, because it puts the Israel lobby, which directs so much USA foreign policy, in opposition to USA interests. In a sense the USA is self destroying itself pursuing a stupid strategy. As long as the Israel factor is denied and not discussed, the USA will be losing this war.

                Here, try the version I hope it wasn’t sanitized to leave out the real deal


        • Don Wharton says:

          Apparently every meeting on Dick Cheney’s calendar re planning for the Iraq war was paired with a meeting with oil interests. This was substantial if circumstantial confirmation of the linkage with oil interests.

          • That is a lie. Cheney was worried about the potential for Saddam to repeat what he did in Kuwait and set several hundred wells on fire. But the main driver taking the whole country into supporting a blunder in Iraq was the neocon machine. They all lined up like loyal soldiers, from the NY Times to the Murdoch machine to the Pentagon gnomes working under Wolfowitz to sell the WMD lie. But the key was what they perceived to be Israel’s needs.

            The Israelis are very intelligent. Osama developed a strategy to bring the USA close, to have USA soldiers engaged close up with his forces. He saw the game as a simple war of attrition in which he had to bleed the USA over a period of 100 years or more. The Israelis saw through this and decided to let the USA fall in osama’s trap. The Israeli right are very keen on seeing the USA take casualties and develop islamophobia to an extreme, which allows Israel to proceed with the final solution: ethnic ckeansing of the Palestinian “problem”. This is why we see the relentless islamophobia campaign in the USA right wing media.

            The Israelis want the USA cover to get rid of the Palestinians and consolidate borders. They need to have a compact area, surrounded by Muslim clients, driven into clienthood by USA power. Thus Osama wants USA soldiers fighting and dying, and the Israelis want the same because it ratchets up hatred in the USA.

            Evidently we have a few idiots in the oil industry thinking USA control of Iraq is a good idea, but they are meaningless bit players. If the oil industry were that powerful, and if indeed the military were being used to control oil fields, we would have USA marines in Venezuela to control that huge Orinoco oil belt, there would be three giant pipelines from Canada to Houston, and the USA would be self sufficient using Western Hemisphere oil. But that’s not the way it works. What counts in USA foreign policy is Israel.

            • Don Wharton says:

              You have provided no evidence that my report is incorrect. I fully support the general thesis that there were many other things that contributed to this supremely bad decision. High on this list would have to be the false “intelligence” supplied by the CIA. I would be happy to concur with your suggestion that the neocon machine deserves much of the blame here.

              • Don Wharton

                I would have to take you to Houston, where I keep hundreds of books and a few hard drives with information.

                One very useful compact string is available in the American Conservative Magazine articles written in 2001-4. That magazine was run by Pat Buchanan and a couple of other real conservatives. They dug up a lot of dirt.

              • Don Wharton says:


                Nothing is either true or false because of the terms we adopt for our self identity. Obviously with 20/20 hindsight everyone, including most conservatives, realize that the Iraq war was a vast mistake. It is quite impressive that Pat Buchanan and others were digging up dirt on the neocons back in 2001-4. I was not tracking that at the time and I would be happy to give them credit for a job well done if that is what is what they did. I would argue that he did not do that because he was a “true conservative.” Most conservatives were strongly supporting Bush at the time.

                By the way, I was telling my liberal friends for years that it was absolutely nuts to imagine that we went to war in Iraq because of the oil. I pointed out that there simply was not enough oil there to justify the gargantuan costs. My argument was that they could not be that stupid. I tend to reject any conspiracy theory unless there is some solid evidence. It was not until one of my friends said OK, here is the evidence from the Cheney appointment log. Now they did not take and publish any records about what was discussed in those meetings. We are not mind readers. However, it was enough for me to accept that they really could be that stupid. There is no reasonable other interpretation for a compulsive pairing of meetings other than including the fossil fuel interests in the stampede to war.

                By the way, my recollection is that Sadam was paying $25,000 to the families of Palestinian suicide bombers. That surely gave Israel strong motivation to support the war effort. I am quite comfortable in supporting your claim that Israel also deserves some of the blame for the trillions in American resources wasted on on the Iraq war.

  18. The Wet One says:

    Just throwing this up here because it’s particularly noteworthy today (being October 14, 2015):

    Many good articles on the state of affairs and the pace of change in the world.

    • wimbi says:

      Yep, pretty awful, ain’t it? But we all know the cure, run around like crazy trying to find more oil.

      • Fred Magyar says:

        Well imagine if we did the alternative thing instead. Next thing ya know someone would be sayin we had a down right anti fossil fuel agenda going on there… Cain’t have dat! No siree!
        We gotta go and burn every last drop of da durn stuff. After all It’s god’s gift to huumantee. And you wouldn’t wanna go offend no god now, wouldya?

        But on a slightly more serious note, I noticed the mention of the elephants killed with cyanide for their ivory. I had read about that in a few other sources as well. I’m having a hard time with that news. Elephants are highly intelligent social creatures it must be absolutely devastating to their family groups. They are known to mourn and go back to visit the skeletons of their family members years after there has been a death.

        What kind of pathetic excuse for a human still wants to have an ivory sculpture or carving in the 21st century. Surely they must know where ivory comes from and what the true price for it is? The poachers are miserable bastards but it is the individuals with money who are creating the demand and they are the one’s I’d like to see punished very severely.

        As they say, life ain’t fair.

        • Glenn Stehle says:

          And yet, the holy war to save the elephants isn’t working.

          Why do you suppose that is?

          The enviornmentalists are having about the same level of sucess in their crusade to save the elephants as they are having when it comes to spreading the message about global warming. (For instance, see graph below on how the elephants in Africa have fared over the past few years.)

          And this failure comes in spite of the enviromentalists’ success in passing draconian new laws against ivory poaching and merchandising, and the environmentalists’ unholy alliance with the Department of Homeland Security and its Gestapo-like tactics, including the assumption of guilty until proven innocent.

          The enviromentalists and their Department of Homeland Security allies are doing their part to abrogate the civil and constitutional rights of Americans in an ever-expanding security state — all done in the name of some holy cause of course — but to what ultimate end, other than a quest for power?

          • MarbleZeppelin says:

            Holy War? Holy Misnomer.

            Glenn said “And yet, the holy war to save the elephants isn’t working.

            Why do you suppose that is?”

            Greed and selfishness is the answer. There are enough people who will do anything for money and enough people with lots of money who have no morality or ethics outside of themselves.

            But much like the dog that gathered bones and spent all it’s time gathering and protecting it’s pile from others. It just ended up alone as a pile of bones on it’s bones.

            • Glenn Stehle says:

              The crusade to save the elephants isn’t a holy war?

              Then what is it? What animates the fire in the belly to save the elephants?

              Can you explain this passion in terms of rational self-interest theory, selfish gene theory, or any other purely materialist doctrine?

              • MarbleZeppelin says:

                I can certainly explain why people want to save elephants. Many have empathy for other creatures, many have a knowledge of nature and natural systems, many have advanced beyond pure selfishness and greed. Evolution has given many the ability to see beyond themselves.

                Lower order humans only see the world through a very limited view of self-interest (akin to that of a spoiled child) and often do not see beyond materialism. They seem to have the inability to focus on the larger picture or use higher level thinking and emotions. Possibly a divergent branch but more likely considering the state of the world, a dead end.

                • Glenn Stehle says:

                  MarbleZeppelin said:

                  I can certainly explain why people want to save elephants. Many have empathy for other creatures….

                  Absolutely. Paul Zak did an intriguing lecture to The Science Network on that very subject:


                  Personally, I don’t get too bent out of shape about the suffering of animals. But my significant other does — no eating meat and the whole nine yards.

                  So I guess the world is large, or as they say in Mexico cada cabeza es un mundo (each head is a world).

          • MarbleZeppelin says:

            Holy War? Holy Misnomer.

            Glenn said “And yet, the holy war to save the elephants isn’t working.

            Why do you suppose that is?”

            Greed and sociopathic selfishness is the answer. There are enough people who will do anything for money and enough people with lots of money who have no morality or ethics outside of themselves.
            These same people destroy as much as possible around them to make money and don’t admit any responsibility for their acts.

          • Nick G says:

            environmentalists’ unholy alliance with the Department of Homeland Security

            What’s that?

            • Dennis Coyne says:

              I was wondering too. Glenn paints with a very broad brush. As far as I know environmentalists generally don’t work closely with the department of homeland security. Does Glenn have a better idea on how the elephants should be protected? I think this is up to the nations where the remaining elephants reside on how best to protect them. A very high tax on any ivory sold might help (make it 10 times the price of the ivory itself).

              Much of the higher electricity prices in Denmark and Germany are due to higher taxes on electricity for residential consumers relative to other European nations. This may result in lower taxes on income and lower sales taxes on other goods.

              • Glenn Stehle says:

                Dennis Coyne says:

                Much of the higher electricity prices in Denmark and Germany are due to higher taxes on electricity for residential consumers relative to other European nations. This may result in lower taxes on income and lower sales taxes on other goods.

                That is an empirical claim which should be easy enough to verify. Can you cite any references which do so, because my references say the very opposite:

                To encourage the expansion of green power production, the government guaranteed prices for electricity fed into the grid from renewable sources, such as wind turbines or solar panels….

                The government passes the subsidy cost on to consumers in a surcharge… The renewable energy surcharge levied on German households and businesses has nearly tripled since 2010 and now accounts for about 18% of a German household’s electric bill. All told, the subsidies amount to about €24 billion a year, according to Germany’s economics ministry.

                • Dennis Coyne says:

                  Hi Glenn,

                  You may be correct.

                  I used the page at the following link:


                  They use the term “taxes and levies (including VAT)” and I interpreted that, incorrectly, as a tax.

                  It probably includes the surcharge you mention, which is not a tax, but more of a transfer of income from ratepayers to the owners of renewable energy means of production.

                  Is this a huge problem for Germans? The UK price of electricity (where the taxes are very low) is about 10 Euro cents less than Germany. The average household uses about 3750 kWh per year or 312 kWh per month. This amounts to an extra monthly expenditure of 31 Euros per month(relative to the United Kingdom). The median income for a two income family in Germany is 39,000 Euros per year or 3250 per month, the 31 extra Euros for electricity amounts to less than 1% of income, not really a huge burden for the median household.

                  • Glenn Stehle says:


                    Good try with your “average household” argument. But upon closer examination, what we find is that it too ends up being long on lawyering and short on facts.

                    For not only are the enormous cross-subsidies which are lavished on renewables in Germany paid for by households, they are paid for by poorest of households — those who rent. Energy Transition blog explains:

                    Germany is an outlier. Far more than any other country, German power firms get most of their profits from small power consumers….

                    One reason is low home ownership; many Germans prefer to rent and put savings into their pension plans. Tenants will have a harder time going off-grid because they don’t own their roof….

                    For the time being, small German consumers continue to cross-subsidize the country’s biggest power consumers, while German policymakers have taken the first steps towards keeping these small customers captive.


                    The unholy alliance between Green Utopians and the German oligarchs is all about using the long arm of the government to rob from the poor and give to the rich. It’s about taxing the poorest of households and giving the money to the richest, or to households which own their own homes and which can afford the substantial up-front cost of installing renewables, which will then be paid for by taxes on the poor.

                    It’s a perfect example of what “socialism” and “liberalism” have come to look like in the 21st century.

                  • Fred Magyar says:

                    The unholy alliance between Green Utopians and the German oligarchs is all about using the long arm of the government to rob from the poor and give to the rich. It’s about taxing the poorest of households and giving the money to the richest, or to households which own their own homes and which can afford the substantial up-front cost of installing renewables, which will then be paid for by taxes on the poor.

                    Really? Come on! That is completely untrue and does not in any way reflect the reality in Germany.

                  • Dennis Coyne says:

                    Hey Glenn

                    You do know the difference between median and average, I hope.

                  • Glenn Stehle says:

                    Fred Magyar said:

                    Really? Come on! That is completely untrue and does not in any way reflect the reality in Germany.

                    Fred, that is not an argument. That is a proclamation, in which you marshall no empirical data to back it up.

                  • Glenn Stehle says:

                    Dennis Coyne says:

                    Hey Glenn

                    You do know the difference between median and average, I hope.

                    And what’s your point, since you use both words — “average” and “median” — in your comment?

                    Or is this what passes for argumentation in Green Utopia these days?

            • Glenn Stehle says:

              Nick G says:

              environmentalists’ unholy alliance with the Department of Homeland Security

              What’s that?

              The most notorious case was when the Department of Homeland Security, working in partnership with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Department, raided and shut down the Gibson Guitar plants in Memphis and Nashville, Tennessee.

              This short video documentary hits the high points of the types of abuses committed by the unholy alliance which exists between the environmentalists and the Department of Homeland Security:


              For the long version, there’s this from the Georgetown Law Journal:

              The Gibson Guitar raid drew more attention to the concept of overcriminalization and led many to ask why, and how, the federal government could use an environmental statute called the Lacey Act to execute a raid on a renowned company and threaten to criminally prosecute it for allegedly violating the civil
              laws of a foreign country. In many ways, overcriminalization is not a new concept, and many legal scholars have argued that America has been undergoing an overcriminalization wave for decades.7 Overcriminalization can roughly be defined as the criminalization of conduct that most people would not consider inherently wrongful or criminal….

              Initially passed as a narrow statute designed to address illegal wildlife poaching in a way that respected the concepts of federalism, the Lacey Act has transformed into a broad and sweeping federal law that can be used to target individuals and
              businesses that are not even aware they are engaging in criminal conduct… As the Lacey Act’s history so vividly illustrates, powerful interest groups may win out in their efforts to transform laws in accordance with their interests….

              The Lacey Act has evolved over time to criminalize behavior that many Americans would consider unobjectionable. Specifically, four key factors contributed to the Lacey Act’s development toward overcriminalization: (1) a substantial shift in the law’s purpose and objectives; (2) the centralization of the law’s
              enforcement scheme and strengthening of its penalties; (3) the inclusion of an unquantifiable number of foreign predicate laws that can trigger a violation of the Act; and (4) the watering down of the law’s mens rea requirements.


              And as civil rights activists note, the Gibson Guitar raid is typical of the wave of abuse the unholy alliance between the environmentalists and the Department of Homeland Security have unleashed on American citizens:

              And this isn’t an isolated incident. Just ask Harvey Silverglate, Boston lawyer, activist, civil liberties advocate, and author of Three Felonies a Day: How the Feds Target the Innocent. As he explains, the Feds routinely take advantage of the vagueness of many of our laws by starting from the target and working backwards, selectively prosecuting people they want to go after by charging them with crimes they often don’t even know exist.

              “We are in terrible trouble as a nation under law,” he says. “When you have a system predicated on jurisdictional interests rather than on specific, identifiable, understandable, definable violations of law, there is a great opportunity for tyranny.”….

              Worse, 95 percent of federal cases never go to trial, because “Justice Department prosecutors have engineered the system to make it too risky to go to trial,” often railroading people who are innocent. “They have built a conviction machine, not a system of justice.”….

              Throw unchecked prosecutorial discretion into the mix and you have a recipe for legal nightmares straight out of Kafka.

              • Nick G says:

                Uhmmm…why do you bring this up here?

                Why bring up the fact that US authorities are abusing civil rights in connection with elephant slaughter?

                The fact that US authorities can and do mis-use environmental law (along with just about every other kind of law you can think of) doesn’t seem to tell us much about environmental issues.

                • Dennis Coyne says:

                  As I said Glenn paints with a very broad brush, he should work for the Federal Government 🙂

                  • Glenn Stehle says:

                    Well I guess if “painting with a very broad brush” means making arguments based on concrete, detailed, empirical data, then I plead guilty.

                    I very much prefer it to the lawyerly rationalizations which you and Nick seem to prefer.

                • Glenn Stehle says:

                  °°°°Nick G says:

                  Why bring up the fact that US authorities are abusing civil rights in connection with elephant slaughter?

                  The fact that US authorities can and do mis-use environmental law (along with just about every other kind of law you can think of)…

                  So what exactly is your argument, Nick, that if everybody is guilty, then nobody is guilty?

                  Try telling that one to the judge the next time you go to court to fight a speeding ticket, and see how far it gets you.

                  °°°°Nick G said:

                  The fact that US authorities can and do mis-use…doesn’t seem to tell us much about environmental issues.

                  Did you watch the documentary film I linked?

                  The environmentalists cheered the Department of Homeland Security on in its violation of other people’s civil rights. The key phrase here, of course, is “other people’s.”

                  That, to me at least, tells us a great deal about enviromentalists, or more generally about human nature, because I don’t think environmentalists are unique in this regard.

                  • Ronald Walter says:

                    When you call yourself an Indian or a Muslim or a Christian or a European, or anything else, you are being violent. Do you see why it is violent? Because you are separating yourself from the rest of mankind. When you separate yourself by belief, by nationality, by tradition, it breeds violence. So a man who is seeking to understand violence does not belong to any country, to any religion, to any political party or partial system; he is concerned with the total understanding of mankind.”

                    ― Jiddu Krishnamurti


                    Especially if you call yourself a Democrat or a Republican, then you are being vilent.

                    If you can’t see how you are being violent, you’re blind being led by the dumb.

                    Bamboozle is the word of the day.

                • Nick G says:

                  I don’t think environmentalists are unique in this regard.

                  Well, that’s the point. That means that this is about the abuse of civil rights, not environmentalists, so it’s just a big distraction here.

                  Protecting the environment is a good idea, even if some of the people who identify themselves as “environmentalists” do wrong things.


                  • Glenn Stehle says:


                    No, it’s about what James Madison said: “Wherever a majority are united by a common interest or passion, the rights of the minority are in danger.”

                    Linked with the idea of a majority is that of a faction — “a number of citizens…who are united and actuated by some common impulse of passion, or of interest, adverse to the rights of other citizens.”

                    So everyone needs to be held accountable, and the environmentalists are no exception.

                    Dressing one’s agenda up in the garb of self-righteousness, regardless of how genuine the passion that actuates that sense of devotion might be, is no substitute for accountability.

          • Fred Magyar says:

            Yes there is poaching and then there are people who have money to spend on killing a majestic wild creature just so they can mount it’s head on a wall.

            For me it is very hard to understand what goes on in the mind of such a person that allows him to justify such an action! Does this person really not understand that such an animal is priceless and irreplaceable?

            I hope he bears the brunt of the full force of anger that will be vented towards him for a long long time to come by every single social media outlet there is. May he never have peace again! Of course the guy is probably a sociopath and couldn’t care less!


            German elephant hunter will be named and shamed, vows Zimbabwe taskforce Conservation group will track down and vilify hunter who allegedly paid £40,000 to kill one of Zimabwe’s largest elephants.

            …“He had a permit but he should have used his common sense to say, this is a majestic animal, and to report it to the authorities or to conservation groups. We would have collared it,” said Rodrigues.

            “We have our frontline investigators on this and we will find out his identity and we will make it public. What he’s done is just greed. He’s not guilty of breaking the law by not having a permit and a licence. He had all that. But to shoot an iconic animal is wrong.”

            • Ronald Walter says:

              How about hyenas? They’ll attack and kill lions too. Should they be prosecuted and persecuted too? They’re just trying to live, lions get in their way sometimes and hyenas are not very kind-hearted themselves. They should know better and leave lions alone, but it’s in their nature to be an enemy for a reason, lions will kill hyenas. It’s a jungle out there.

              I don’t even want to shoot a pheasant, better to watch them fly. I allow hunters to hunt pheasant and waterfowl though, can’t deny them the opportunity to shoot a pheasant or a duck. Don’t want to see a duck hunter walk away disappointed, just empty handed. The goose hunters leave and take the geese they shot. They don’t hear the geese at night wailing and in grief from the loss of some members of the flock. They do. That’s life and it’s not fair!

              Why don’t they hunt hyenas? Makes more sense.

              • Oh give me a break. Hyenas are a part of nature. Lions kill hyenas when they can and hyenas kill lions when they can. It keeps nature in balance.

                It is hard to carry on an intelligent conversation when people start getting stupid comparing what animals, in their natural habitat do, with what humans do with their guns.

                • Ronald Walter says:

                  “The competitive exclusion principle usually describes the competition of animals for a particular niche. But humans are animals also. We have been in the competition for territory and resources for thousands of years. And we have been winning that battle for thousands of years. But it is only in the last few hundred years that our complete dominance in this battle has become overwhelming. We are winning big time, we are quite literally wiping them off the face of the globe.

                  Every large animal in Africa, the lion, the giraffe, the rhino, every great ape in Africa, will all disappear. Every large species in Asia will go also, the tiger, the elephant the orangutan, the panda and even the bears of northern Europe, Asia and North America will all become extinct. They all occupy territory and take resources that can be taken by Homo colossus and Homo colossus will take that territory because it is simply in his nature to do so.

                  We will kill them all.

                  It would eventually have happened even if not one lump of coal, one drop of oil or one whiff of natural gas had ever been discovered… but it would have taken a few thousand years longer. Our weapon, our intelligence, would have given us such a great advantage over other species that eventually the competitive exclusion principle would have prevaled and wiped them all out. Fossil fuels only enabled us to explode our own population and therefore wipe out the rest of the earth’s megafauna a lot sooner.”

                  Ron Patterson, The Competitive Exclusion Principle


                  If humans are dumb enough to be smart enough to act like hyenas, to kill anything that moves, what are gonna do?

                  If you have a thousand geese eating your barley crop, will you fire three or four rounds of a 30-06 into the gaggle or let them eat for two days?

                  The farmer will shoot at the geese and feed the barley to the cattle.

                  Competitors out there everywhere.

                  • Glenn Stehle says:

                    Well maybe even Richard Dawkins, the high priest of material determinism, is getting soft in the head in his dotage?

                    Here, for instance, is what Dawkins said in a PBS interview:

                    I am very comfortable with the idea that we can override biology with free will. Indeed, I encourage people all the time to do it. Much of the message of my first book, “The Selfish Gene,” was that we must understand what it means to be a gene machine, what it means to be programmed by genes, so that we are better equipped to escape, so that we are better equipped to use our big brains, use our conscience intelligence, to depart from the dictates of the selfish genes and to build for ourselves a new kind of life which as far as I am concerned the more un-Darwinian it is the better, because the Darwinian world in which our ancestors were selected is a very unpleasant world. Nature really is red in tooth and claw. And when we sit down together to argue out and discuss and decide upon how we want to run our societies, I think we should hold up Darwinism as an awful warning for how we should not organize our societies.

                • Old Farmer Mac says:

                  Don’t forget Ronald is our resident court jester. He is pretty smart, actually VERY smart, but his comments are generally a mixture of sarcasm, satire, dry humor, realism, and the kitchen sink.

                  You simply cannot read them literally as anything except nonsense. But read them as word portraits and meaning may or may not be found. Reading RW is like looking at modern art, you either see something or you don’t. Sometimes I see something, sometimes I don’t.

                  I can make great sense of out of his five thirty seven by summing it up as this way, in plain english.

                  The world is a Darwinian place.
                  Overall message, get used do it.

                  Hyenas get bad press, lions and elephants get good press. Somebody ought to put in a word for hyenas occasionally.

                  His own flavor of dead pan humor. . I hear all sorts of stuff about noble elephants and lions, but VERY seldom a word from the environmental press about the beauty, grace, nobility, intelligence, group loyalty, etc etc of hyenas. Just poking a little fun.

                  People ought to hunt hyenas rather than elephants and lions. Poking fun at egotistical big game trophy hunters, even though he is apparently not opposed to sustainable hunting ( geese etc ).

                  I hunt and fish a little myself. This behavior is built into my genome. I will not personally ever kill a rare animal, but there are plenty of rabbits around this year, enough for the hawks to spare me a couple for the supper table.

                  It’s part of our nature, everybody ought to get used to it and accept it, just like we ought to accept that LGBT people are part of nature and we ought to just get used to them and accept them for what they are, no better and no worse than anybody else.

              • Fred Magyar says:

                Ronald, when hyenas and lions kill each other they are just trying to survive, that’s what they do.

                However, even as some twisted form of satire you can’t possibly equate that, with the behavior of some asshole, with a tiny flaccid penis, who plunks down $80,000 for the glorious right to murder a half century old, magnificent, sentient social creature such as the elephant in this story.

                Perhaps it is just me, but there isn’t anything that comes to mind that could possibly justify this kind of behavior. I’m sure that once his identity is revealed and is posted online he will come to deeply regret his lapse of judgement.

                Edit due to your response to Ron’s comment.
                I don’t buy the argument that we will just kill everything. Not all humans are Neaderthals. We do have amongst us individuals who stand out from the crowd. Here’s a few


                • Synapsid says:

                  ALL right, FredM:

                  Knock it off with badmouthing Neanderthals!

                  (Full disclosure:) Several percent of my DNA is Neanderthal.

        • The Chinese love ivory, nowadays they have a neofascist “communist” party and oligarchy in control. And these “communist” oligarchs aren’t that focused on niceties. They’ll drive Chinese to live and breathe in horrible conditions. My daughter worked in China, she was a college professor there, and she left after two years because the air contamination was bad, but what really scared her was the food and water contamination. So if a regime treats people this way, why should it bother to do anything about elephants?

          • Fred Magyar says:

            Not sure what China has to do with this story? I’m discussing a German hunter who purchased a permit to kill a trophy animal. This case has nothing to do with Ivory, poachers, air pollution or Chinese communists.

            • The others were discussing elephants and ivory. In that area the Chinese are real evil doers. They also cause a lot of problem buying rhino horns. They think it makes them manly men.

              • Glenn Stehle says:


                Well actually it was China who threw down the gauntlet in this latest round of moral one-upmanship:

                “China calls on US to follow its lead in eradicating ivory trade”
                Simon Denyer for the Washington Post
                Tuesday 9 June 2015 11.13 BST

                But Obama certainly picked the gautlet up:

                “Obama Proposes Sweeping Ban On U.S. Ivory Sales”
                BY NATASHA GEILING JUL 27, 2015 3:25PM

                What both China and the United States are doing is what the scientists who study these things call “cheap signaling.” The reason it’s “cheap” signaling, and not “costly” signaling, is because these largely symbolic gestures — which entail sweeping, blanket bans on all ivory sales — cost the real economies of China and the United States very little.

                The authorities slap a few antiques dealers and museum folks around, stripping them of their civil, legal and property rights, but that’s a small price to pay for the privilege of mounting one’s moral high horse and being able to claim moral superiority. (And when it comes to pious self-righteousness, the Green Utopians make John Calvin look like a rank amateur.)

                But more importantly, these draconian laws and the massive police aparatus necessary to enforce them move us closer to being a police state, something which politicians on both sides of the Pacific seem to be in thrall of:

                If the new ivory banning laws hold, no one in America will be allowed to buy, trade or sell anything made totally or partially of elephant or rhino ivory unless they can prove a piece existed prior to 1914….

                An ivory owner must prove their ivory is over 100 years old by providing documentation papers that are close to impossible to secure. To verify an item’s age, one must fill out lengthy forms, obtain DNA and carbon tests, a certificate from the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) and an appraisal from experts — most of whom no longer are willing to place a price value on ivory that cannot be sold. They do not want to become entangled in expensive lawsuits….

                Unfortunately, throughout the centuries carvers did not provide notarized affidavits and certificates of authenticity; most deceased relatives did not include original receipts and descriptions with their bequests; and virtually no one can prove when certain pieces of ivory entered the U.S. Thus, the majority of those who own ivory are stuck with it. It’s virtually worthless because most of it cannot be sold….

                It will take thousands of agents to enforce the new ban laws. They will have to search sales at auctions, flea markets, shows, exhibitions, house sales, import and export cargo stations, and more….

                If you own one piece or a vast collection of ivory objects, your best bet is to enjoy owning it and forget about selling or trading it. Perhaps the law will be changed, but until it does, Big Brother is controlling the market and playing hardball.

                “Ivory Ban Punishes Antiques Dealers”

                • Synapsid says:


                  No mention of ivory from walrus, hippo, mammoth, or mastodon? Or sperm whales?

                  If you have a collection of 19th-Century billiard balls it sounds like you could sell it. They’re likely mammoth ivory from Siberia.

  19. BC says:

    Banks have piggybacked on Wall St., PE, and hedge fund funding of the shale and energy-related transport sectors (having recently piled in anticipating a rebound in the price of oil), bubbling up commercial and industrial (C&I) loans to a share of final sales last witnessed at previous business cycle peaks.

    Historically, there is rarely a bubble or bubbles without banks following asset prices higher by piling in and levering up, growing loans at a compounding doubling time of 5-7 years, only to result bubbles that burst and must be bailed out.

    Well, the banks have done it again, and C&I loan charge-offs and delinquencies are bottoming and beginning to pick up again as in 2007, 1998, and 1989.

    BTW, wholesales sales and inventories are clearly recessionary, but Wall St. and most eCONomists are ignoring conditions in the real economy just as they did in 2008 and 2001 long after a recession had begun.

  20. Doug Leighton says:

    This is a good interview with Ben van Beurden, chief executive for Royal Dutch Shell, titled: SHELL CEO SAYS LOW OIL PRICES DID NOT SINK OFF-SHORE DRILLING IN ALASKA

    “…If you look at the Alaska development, this would have been a development that would of course take place many years from now. We were in the early stages of exploration. And then we would have had to have an appraisal phase. A development phase. So real oil production would be well into the next decade before it would come on…”

    “…Well, we sort of shy away from making predictions about the oil price because we know we will never get it right anyway. But we look at the fundamentals of the market. And the fundamentals of the market point to higher oil prices than we have today. And you don’t have to have it right on a quarter-by-quarter or year-by-year basis. As long as over the decades that your project will last, you have a pretty good view of where your project might be…”

    • Aws. says:

      Realized Doug’s link was for an Alaskan news site by the headline of one of the “most popular” articles…

      Man legally named Santa Claus wins council seat in North Pole

    • Old Farmer Mac says:

      In some what plainer terms, the Shell ceo said the company is willing to bet megabucks on the price of oil being UP enough to make drilling profitable even in the Arctic within ten years or so-IF the oil is there.

      What is not quite clear is whether the company has decided to post pone further exploration due to tight finances or due to a belief further exploration is a bad bet.

  21. Greenbub says:

    “Global offshore oil production in ageing fields will fall by 10 percent next year as producers abandon field upgrades at the fastest rate in 30 years, in the first clear sign of output cuts outside the U.S. shale industry, exclusive data shows.”

  22. Old Farmer Mac says:

    I personally think the actual installed costs of a solar pv system, in constant money , will fall by half in the USA within ten years.

    Progress continues.

    • SW says:

      Like all engineering, it is a cost benefit analysis. For space cells, we accomplish the same thing by making the back contact essentially a mirror. THis is very old technology. It is called a back surface reflector or BSR. THis works quite well because semiconductors are transparent to photons that have energy below their band gap i.e. the infrared energy responsible for much but not all of the heating that takes place in a solar cell. The remainder of the heating is caused by the difference between the band gap and the energy of the incident photon for those that are absorbed and hopefully converted. These thermalized electrons transfer energy to the crystal lattice in the form of phonons. A BSR can just as easily be employed for terrestrial PV. It is just a bit more expensive than some of the cheaper ways of making back contacts currently employed to drive the costs down. Is it more expensive than adding this stuff as a blanket on top of the arrays? I honestly don’t know. That would take some pretty sophisticated techno economic analysis. Analysis that I would guess is outside of the expertise of the group working on this project.

      • Watcher says:

        Avg US house consumes 30 KW-Hrs per day. That’s all you need to know.

        • wimbi says:

          It’s also nice to know that it is EASY to reduce that 30 to around 12 by very simple means, and fairly easy to do what I did and reduce it to 8 before I went to PV, put everything on electric, and still have a monthly bill of ZERO.

          Resistance is futile, hahaha.

        • SW says:

          That’s a stupid response.

          • wimbi says:

            And true. Lots of people have done it.

            What’s really stupid is continuing on the suicidal path of ff’s. Not only stupid, but criminal.

            And damned obvious to anyone with eyes to see.

            Thanks for the interesting info on space PV.

        • Dennis Coyne says:

          Hi Watcher,

          I have a 2500 square foot house and use 10 kW-hr per day, about a third of the “average house” and don’t really try that hard to save electricity. In many cases people waste electricity because electric rates in some places are very low, this will change as ancient coal fired power plants are shut down.

          My guess is that with a little work I could get electricity use down to 5 kWh per day, and Wimbi is below that I am sure.

          • Glenn Stehle says:

            You got me curious, so I went and pulled my electric bills to see what my average electricity usage is.

            During the past 12 months, it averaged 6.35 KwH per day.

            My last bi-monthly electricity bill was for $46 plus change, for a usage of 208 KwH per month.

            But of course I live in a place that has a very moderate climate — it gets neither very hot nor very cold. I have neither heating nor air conditioning in my house.

            • Dennis Coyne says:

              Hi Glenn,

              Very impressive, I live in a cold climate and have a radon problem so a radon mitigation system wastes energy 24/7 (probably about 1.5 kWh each day), I don’t use AC, but require a lot of heat in the winter.

              I think Wimbi said he got his usage down to 8 kWh/day before getting PV, but I don’t know if he was charging his Leaf at that point (which would increase his electricity usage).

              • wimbi says:

                We used to limit our electricity from coal by heating with wood, and cooking with propane/wood, and hot water with wood.

                6-8 kw-hrs/day. No AC. fairly hot here in summer, but we have well insulated 2000 sqft house and it works well to ventilate it at night and shut tight during day.

                Visitors thought we had AC until I barked “shut the door” when they just stood there saying a long goodby holding the door open to the hot mug outside.

                Our car was a nice honda fit. Gas, but pretty frugal.

                We live in a big hardwood forest and our neighbors do the work of getting it for us with pay of as much as they want for themselves.

                Then the light dawned (ha), I grabbed a lot of bargain PV, and reversed course to all electric for everything- cooking AC, hot water, everything, and gave granddaughter the fit and got a leaf.

                Now, I have not measured our actual kw-hrs, but it’s a lot. But we generate a lot more than we use. Oddly, about 30/day back to the grid in summer.

                The leaf gives us what feels like free transportation.

                I did it easy. Whatthehell, anyone of the so-called middle class strung along my road could do the same with less than the money they spent on their 150, the camper and that goddam boat that sits all year in their back yard.

                All of above is reason for me to have no sympathy at all for “solar costs too much”.

                or for “Coal is cheap”. when we don’t come close to paying its cost.

        • Watcher says:

          Avg US house consumes 30 KW-Hrs per day. That’s all you need to know.

          Has a powerful ring to it, doesn’t it? All those people out there choosing to spend more on power than they . . . should. Y’all should go door to door and yell at them.

          • Dennis Coyne says:

            Hi Watcher,

            They can waste their money however they choose, the point is that 2/3 of the energy used is just inefficient energy use. When electricity prices increase, electricity use decreases with very little change in lifestyle.

            • Watcher says:

              Maybe you should bring a gun when you knock on the door. To lend some authority to your demands.

              • Dennis Coyne says:

                Hi Watcher,

                That would be your approach. If people want to waste their money, that’s fine, as the cost of electricity increases, they can choose to become more efficient in their use of energy or waste a larger share of their income, again personal choice. I am not demanding anything people can spend their money as they see fit. The more that is wasted, the higher the price will be, eventually people change their habits as prices rise.

                • Caelan MacIntyre says:

                  “Maybe you should bring a gun when you knock on the door. To lend some authority to your demands.” ~ Watcher

                  “Hi Watcher,

                  That would be your approach.” ~ Dennis Coyne

                  Hi Dennis,

                  The problem with Watcher’s apparent ‘approach’ is that it’s ‘yours’ too, you ‘just don’t see it’, it’s done in your name, so to speak.

                  It is because the dystem is fundamentally corrupt, and you support it– the (USA) governpimp, yes? Its corruptions are embedded/structural.

                  So we have some people, including you, who can ‘afford’ to use (up) more plundered and pillaged energy, resources, land and slave labor than other people simply because ‘you’ have more money and the backing of various weapons and spy technologies and threats, like of violence and economic sanctions, and so forth, even though there’s no real ethical reason for much of it, is there? If so, do tell, I’m all ears.

                  Isn’t it neat how the ‘crony-capitalist-state’ dovetails into stuff like that? Like peak oil, energy usage, climate change, ecocide, resource depletion/despoilment, refugee crises, wars, crime, impoverishment, homelessness, landlessness, and so on? Those all have costs too. Who’s paying for them? Well, who incurred them?

                  So maybe you, too, should be paying properly for your lifestyle, your real/fair share of incurred costs, and by Watcher’s suggested edict-enforcement. What do you think? Did I just read 2500 square feet for the size of your house? Up here in Nova Scotia I find that even 1000 sq ft seems too big. What do you do with the extra 1500?

                  • Dennis Coyne says:

                    Hi Caelan,

                    It is Watcher suggesting edicts, I simply point out that I use considerably less than average for a medium size home, where I live.

                    Typically larger homes would tend to use more electricity, my house happens to be close to the US median new house size in 2013.

                    Any way, I am not suggesting the use of force so that people use less electricity. Tax externalities such as pollution so that these costs are not shifted to the less powerful members of society so that all costs are included in the price of electricity. Doing that would encourage the production of electricity that pollutes less and the higher prices would also tend to reduce the amount of electricity people would use.

                    We could opt for no electricity, but personally that is not a choice I would make, I think we could choose to use less electricity and the World would be better, so I start with me.

                  • Glenn Stehle says:


                    I’ve always admired the eloquence with which George Orwell expressed it in his essay “Rudyard Kipling”:

                    We all live by robbing Asiatic coolies, and those of us who are “enlightened” all maintain that these coolies ought to be set free; but our standard of living, and hence our “enlightenment,” demands that the robbery shall continue.

                    A humanitarian is always a hypocrite, and Kipling’s understanding of this is perhaps the central secret of his power to create telling phrases. It would be difficult to hit off the one-eyed pacifism of the English in fewer words than in the phrase, “making mock of uniforms that guard you while you sleep.”

                    It is true that Kipling does not understand the economic aspect of the relationship between the highbrow and the blimp. He does not see that the map is painted red chiefly in order that the coolie may be exploited. Instead of the coolie he sees the Indian Civil Servant; but even on that plane his grasp of function, of who protects whom, is very sound.

                    He sees clearly that men can only be highly civilised while other men, inevitably less civilised, are there to guard and feed them.

                  • Nick G says:

                    I’m not so sure.

                    It’s easy to say, like Jack Nicholson’s character, that “you don’t want to know the truth- you can’t handle the truth!”.

                    But, maybe the truth is that the wars, especially these days, are less to protect civilized men, and more to draft their children, scare voters into voting for their elected protectors of profit, and tax them for more war profits.

                    Take imported oil: It’s a myth that we exploit oil exporters. Instead, oil producers are exploiting their customers. The US would be far more affluent, far safer, far healthier if it were to eliminate it’s oil imports through a combination of proper taxation and higher CAFE requirements.

                  • Dennis Coyne says:

                    Hi Caelan,

                    How many people in your household? For two people 1000 square feet would be fine, for four it would be small for my taste. It is not only up to me, I am not a dictator and have to cooperate with other members of my family.

                    I could go smaller than 1000 square feet, but my partner would be very unhappy.

                    Last time I checked, you also live in a crony capitalist state, so look in the mirror.

                    There is no utopia, the World is far from perfect, if I had control over everything that happened in the World it might be perfect, but I am human, fallible, so probably not. What is ethical is not always crystal clear, there are many ethical dilemmas that are not easily solved.

                    I think trying to improve the existing system is a better approach, than starting from scratch. But to each their own.

                  • Caelan MacIntyre says:

                    Hi Dennis,

                    “It is Watcher suggesting edicts, I simply point out that I use considerably less than average for a medium size home, where I live.” ~ Dennis Coyne

                    Yes, and I pointed out another or broader context that Watcher’s comment and your subsequent response to it inspired, and that inspired not one but two comments from you, incidentally.
                    This an adult peak oil blog, as opposed to a Mickey Mouse peak oil blog.

                    “Anyway, I am not suggesting the use of force so that people use less electricity.” ~ Dennis Coyne

                    Sure, and I’m suggesting the use of force so that people in the USA use more energy and resources than their fair share. Of course this dovetails into your and others’ remarkable fetish for government.

                    “Tax externalities such as pollution so that these costs are not shifted to the less powerful members of society so that all costs are included in the price of electricity.” ~ Dennis Coyne

                    But what about simply making government non-coercive? If you can wrap your head around this tax-pollution thing, how about a non-coercive government?

                    “Doing that would encourage the production of electricity that pollutes less and the higher prices would also tend to reduce the amount of electricity people would use.” ~ Dennis Coyne

                    An easier, ethical, democratic avenue would appear to simply be to make government participation and tax payments voluntary. If this happened, many problems that currently exist might disappear, like fake government.

                    “We could opt for no electricity, but personally that is not a choice I would make, I think we could choose to use less electricity and the World would be better, so I start with me.” ~ Dennis Coyne

                    So start with you then and don’t include/speak for ‘us’ in your ‘we’. Start with you and look at the heart/core of the matter, like ethics and voluntary participation.

                    “How many people in your household? For two people 1000 square feet would be fine, for four it would be small for my taste. It is not only up to me, I am not a dictator and have to cooperate with other members of my family.” ~ Dennis Coyne

                    Tastes can change and we and our families have to cooperate with Mother Earth too and with other people on it.

                    See how a family of 11 makes their 1100 sq ft home work

                    “There is no utopia, the World is far from perfect, if I had control over everything that happened in the World it might be perfect, but I am human, fallible, so probably not. What is ethical is not always crystal clear, there are many ethical dilemmas that are not easily solved.” ~ Dennis Coyne

                    That’s a bit of a crock, a cop-out, unless you have an ethical-compass problem. Some people apparently do and can be found running corporations and government. In terms of ethical considerations, many things, such as torturing or bombing innocent civilians, are no-brainers and also go against written conventions. The ‘USA government’, for example, of course has ethical bankruptcy written all over it across history.

                    “I think trying to improve the existing system is a better approach, than starting from scratch.” ~ Dennis Coyne

                    Fine, let’s truly improve it then: Make it ethical/non-coercive/voluntary/transparent/etc., then worry about its tax structure later.

                    “But to each their own.” ~ Dennis Coyne

                    Well that’s the point: If it’s to each their own, then that’s ‘plural’ anarchy and no ‘limited/internal’ anarchy (government) in our faces where and when we don’t want them.

                    See also

            • SW says:

              In 1860 the average household created between 60 and 150 lb of horse shit per day.

              • wharf rat says:

                Thanks to the wonders of the net, that’s been reduced to 15 lbs of BS

              • Old Farmer Mac says:

                Horse shit is a very useful substance. Coal ash, on the other hand, is not.

                Of course getting it off the streets in town, when it WAS gotten off the streets, took a good bit of work.

                • Nick G says:

                  Which is why homes in big cities were built one half story off the street level: to get them above that mess.

    • Don Wharton says:

      The installed costs in Germany for PV have been running about half the US costs for some time. That certainly shows that it is possible.

      • Old Farmer Mac says:

        Precisely. I am thinking the Germans have gotten the costs of small systems about as low as possible, given current technology, and that any further cost reduction will be slow and incremental in Germany, coming as component manufacture is gradually scaled up and the manufacturers gradually discover ways to reduce their costs.

        It will take us a decade to catch up here in the USA.

        BUT we will catch up, eventually, once the electrical industry figures out that it needs to get behind solar power in order to make a few billion extra every year an extra five or ten thousand bucks or more EXTRA labor on a new house, not to mention making that much MORE going back and adding pv to old houses. Carpenters, roofers, and other tradesmen will also be in the game, but not nearly to the extent of the electricians.

        That is a powerful lot of loot, and it will mostly wind up in the pockets of distributors of pv components and electricians.

        The banks will be getting a cut too. The potential for banks is huge, with mortgage loans that could well average ten to twenty or even thirty or forty thousand bucks extra- with hardly any extra work on the part of the bank necessary.

        In the end the only people who are really going to invest any real work and money in slowing down solar will be the power companies and coal companies. Gas producers may conclude that gas plus solar is a combination good for gas, since it will be mostly coal that is displaced and gas works better for backup.

        Once a significant percentage of home owners have a personal pv system, pure electric and plug in hybrid cars will start looking like bargains to people who can mostly charge up basically for free, depending on their driving habits.

        There must be a few million owners of small businesses that will be able to charge up AT WORK if they install pv at their businesses.

  23. AlexS says:

    EIA’s Drilling Productivity Report numbers for the Bakken are now much more in line with the NDIC data, than a few months ago.
    The EIA expects the decline in Bakken oil production to continue. Estimated declines by month (kb/d):
    Jul-15 -6
    Aug-15 -17
    Sep-15 -21
    Oct-15 -21
    Nov-15 -23
    Cumulative July-Nov.: -89 kb/d
    November 2015 vs. Dec 2014 peak: -103 kb/d

    • AlexS says:


      It seems that the new DPR projections match your Bakken model

      • Dennis Coyne says:

        Hi Alex,

        Yes you are correct. The DPR seems to fall between my 120 well scenario and my 60 well scenario, probably around 90 wells per month would match pretty well with the DPR scenario. A lot depends on oil prices and I have given up trying to guess what they will be.

    • AlexS says:

      The EIA projects a sharp decline in the Eagle Ford C+C output from 1726 kb/d in March to 1366 kb/d in November (-360 kb/d). Permian production continues to increase

      • Toolpush says:

        It looks like the Eagles Ford, is doing what we expected the Bakken to be doing by now.

        The Eagles Ford rig count seems to also be in a consist decline, indicating further falls to come, while the Bakken count has been rather stable hovering around the 70 mark for the last few months.

        It will be interesting to watch how the Bakken producers handle winter? Will they hibernate, or pay the extra expenses associated with freezing conditions?

        2016 budgets will also be a point of interest.

        • AlexS says:

          In fact, the trend in the Eagle Ford and the Bakken rig count was quite similar over the past year. It started to diverge somewhat only since early July. Since then, the number of active oil rigs in the Eagle ford dropped by 19, and in the Bakken by 11. However that cannot explain the different dynamics in oil production, given that the lag between the well spud and the start of production normally exceeds 3 months.
          Furthermore, oil production in the Bakken has fluctuated within a relatively narrow range until July, while Eagle Ford output has peaked in March/April and started to decline from May.
          Possible explanations:
          1) there are more drilled but uncompleted wells in the Eagle Ford
          2) drilling productivity (wells per rig per month) was not improving in the Eagle Ford as rapidly as in the Bakken
          3) Initial production for new wells in the Eagle Ford is deteriorating
          4) Decline rates for legacy wells in the Eagle Ford are higher than in the Bakken

          Active oil rig count in the Eagle Ford and the Willinston basin (Baker Hughes)

          • Dennis Coyne says:

            Hi AlexS,

            The DPR estimates for the Eagle Ford are not good, their model cannot be easily checked because the RRC data is not very good, when the new RRC data comes out I will update my estimate for Eagle Ford Output. My most recent estimate of Eagle Ford output has March output at about 1580 kb/d in March, which is different from my model. It is likely that the average well profile of completed wells may have increased as companies choose only the best locations for well completion to try to approach positive cash flow (we did see this effect in the Bakken in 2014 and to a smaller extent in 2015). I made this assumption with the 100 new well per month scenario and get the following update (chart below).

            Output peaks in Sept 2015 at 1670 kb/d and drops by 100 kb/d by Dec 2015 and by 470 kb/d by Jan 2017 if 100 wells per month are added in 2016.

            • Dennis Coyne says:

              Hi AlexS,

              A big difference between the Eagle Ford and the Bakken is the rate of increase in output. The Eagle Ford ramped up more quickly than the Bakken with wells being added at a rate of about 200 wells per month over the past 12 months and a peak rate of 235 new wells per month in mid 2014. This leads to higher decline rates for the overall field. The peak completion rate for the Bakken over a 12 month period was 186 wells per month around Aug/Sept 2014 (center of the 12 month period).

              The Eagle Ford wells also have steeper decline rates than the Bakken wells. At present the Eagle Ford needs about 170 new wells per month to remain flat, the ND Bakken/TF needs about 130 new wells per month for relatively flat output. In each case output declines by less than 100 kb/d from August 2015 to Jan 2017 with the well completion rates of 170/month and 130/month.

              The Eagle Ford output estimates will be updated when the latest RRC data is released.

      • Ves says:

        If EIA did correct Abracadabra to their crystal ball than that decline in Eagle Ford is pretty significant?

      • Dennis Coyne says:

        Hi AlexS,

        I doubt the DPR estimate for the Eagle Ford, my model has the high point in Sept at about 1500 kb/d, the completion rate in Feb through May was only about 150 new wells per month and output in my model dropped to 1340 kb/d in April 2015 (the low point).
        If well completions drop to 150 new wells per month by Nov 2015 (August was 229 wells completed so that would be a 26 well per month decrease in completions from Sept to November), my model has output at 1450 kb/d in November 2015, a drop of 60 kb/d from Sept to November and an increase from April. See my scenarios up thread.

        • AlexS says:


          What is the data source in your chart for Eagle Ford?
          TRRC numbers for recent months are uncomplete .
          DrillingInfo database is unavailable to general public.
          So I have nothing to compare the DPR statistics.
          Do you think their EFS numbers for 1H15 were too high?
          Or you think they are assuming too big drop in EFS output?
          Also note that DPR numbers are for the “Eagle Ford region”, which apparently includes some non-EFS conventional production (similarly to DPR data for all other shale plays).

          • Dennis Coyne says:

            Hi AlexS,

            My estimate is based on RRC data and EIA data. I do not know what the DPR data is based on, but there is not that much change in the conventional output in the Eagle Ford region, but you are correct that some of the Eagle Ford output is probably conventional (probably about 70 kb/d). The problem with the DPR model is that it assumes the wells completed is a function of the rig count (with a two month lag), the model would probably be better if they used a 5 month lag for the rig count and maybe tried to account for the DUC inventory.

            I take eagle ford output divided by Texas statewide output (both from the RRC) and multiply by the EIA Texas statewide estimate. This assumes the incomplete reporting is uniform for all Texas output. So we know the percentage of all Texas output is from the Eagle ford (say 43%) and also assume that the EIA estimate is best (lately these have been close to Dean’s central estimate). I last did this in May for the RRC data, but recently updated using the most recent EIA estimates.

            • AlexS says:


              My conclusion is that we actually don’t have reliable information on Eagle Ford production.
              BTW, EFS share in total Texas production is not constant, as the Permian continues growing, while EFS may be in decline. And there is significant conventional production, which we cannot more or less accurately estimate

              • Dennis Coyne says:

                Hi AlexS,

                That is correct the percentage of Eagle Ford output changes monthly, the percentage is simply reported Eagle Ford output by the RRC divided by reported statewide Texas output. My latest estimate is based on the data released in June 2015 (April was the latest month reported at that time).

                I look up the output for all Eagle Ford fields, add them up and divide by statewide output to find the percentage of Eagle Ford output to Statewide output, then multiply by the most recent EIA Texas estimate (or Dean’s central estimate can be used). This is just an estimate and if the assumption that the percentage of incomplete data is consistent throughout Texas (similar for Eagle Ford, Permian, and other areas of Texas) is incorrect, the estimate will also be incorrect. It is a better estimate than anything else I have seen, but will not be perfect.

    • AlexS says:

      EIA DPR: Projected combined monthly declines for 7 key shale plays (kb/d)

      May-15: -5
      Jun-15: -35
      Jul-15: -57
      Aug-15: -76
      Sep-15: -79
      Oct-15: -78
      Nov-15: -94
      Cumulative: -423

      • shallow sand says:

        Enno, AlexS, Rune and others interested.

        4 separate blocks of non-operated working interests for sale in Bakken wells. If I get time will try to summarize opex per BOE. Feel free to look at energy net site. No CA required.

      • Huckleberry Finn says:

        For the EIA drilling productivity report for Natural Gas, I have noticed that EIA predicts a decline each month for the past 3 months and it has not happened. The starting number for each month is higher than the predicted ending number in the previous report.
        Is that correct? And if so why is EIA overestimating NG declines so consistently?

      • Dennis Coyne says:

        Hi AlexS,

        About 300 kb/d of the 400 kb/d decrease comes from the Eagle Ford. I would estimate that the change from May to November in the Eagle Ford Play will only be about 50 kb/d, so the overall decrease on LTO output would be reduced to 150 kb/d or an average of 25 kb/d each month from June to November (if the change was linear).

  24. Never seen a 66 there before.

    • shallow sand says:

      59 in the four counties which contain “the core.”

    • Enno Peters says:

      The last time there were 66 rigs in ND was in December 2009, when ND was producing 240 kbpod.

      • coffeeguyzz says:


        RBN energy is addressing those exact questions right now in a three part series on nat gas production in the USA.

        Suggest you , or anyone, check out their site as it is always highly informative.

    • Dennis Coyne says:

      Hi Ron,

      Yes that is quite low. If we assume it eventually bottoms at 50 rigs and each rig drills 1.3 wells per month, that’s 65 new wells spudded per month. If 120 new wells per month keeps output relatively flat (a slow decline of 80 kb/year) we would need 55 wells from the frack log each month, which Enno Peters estimates at about 900 DUCs (drilled uncompleted wells). That is enough for about 16 months, taking us to the end of 2016. The problem is that low oil prices are likely to result in fewer completed wells, oil prices might go up, hard to predict.

      • If we assume …

        Hi Dennis,

        I stopped assuming some time ago. There are just too many variables here. The number of wells completed, the average production of each well changes as sweet spots change, the changing decline rate, the price of oil… and a few other things I am sure.

        All I do anymore is just watch the data and take it for what it is. But… that being said… the Bakken is just a small part of the big picture. The article in my post up top says offshore mature fields will decline by 1.5 million barrels per day next year. That is 10 percent of their total production.

        That is not a good omen for what might be happening in the rest of the world. I think you, in other post, have grossly underestimated the decline rate in coming years.

        • Dennis Coyne says:

          Hi Ron,

          A lot will depend on demand for oil. Let’s say the estimate that mature offshore fields decline as much as 1.5 Mb/d over a 12 month period is correct. First why is this projected to occur? In large part because low oil prices decrease profits and reduce CAPEX. What will happen to oil prices if demand grows as projected and supply grows 1.5 Mb/d less than expected? They will likely rise, then profits increase, CAPEX increases and the decline in output is reduced, possibly to zero. Decline rates will mostly remain under 2% except in the case of severe recessions or depressions, in those cases reduced demand may reduce oil prices to the point that decline rates will be steep, maybe as much as 5% per year, but output will stabilize at a lower level after a few years and eventually the recession will end.

          A scenario with a depression starting around 2030 below, annual decline rates reach 5% for about 3 years, but mostly decline rates stay under 2% per year. Clearly nobody can predict when such a depression may occur or how long it will last, this is a scenario not a forecast. That is we assume a depression occurs (World Unemployment rates of 25% or more by 2033) which decreases oil prices due to low demand for oil as a result of falling income.

  25. shallow sand says:

    Anecdotal, again.

    Looked at annual production data from field we are in.

    Tremendous early 1980s drilling boom here, with highest number of completions in 1985. Production only fell slightly in 1986, fell much more from 1986 to 1987, despite price rebound.

    Production fell very slightly from 1997 to 1998, much more from 1998 to 1999 despite tremendous price rebound in 1999, and by an even higher percentage from 1999 to 2000 despite high prices. Production rebounded significantly in 2001.

    Finally, production barely fell from 2008 to 2009. Much larger drop 2009 to 2010, despite another tremendous price rebound.

    Again, just an old stripper field, but maybe supports long lag between crash and production drop.

  26. aws. says:

    With Market on Their Side, Electric Utilities Skip Fight Against Carbon Rule

    By Rebecca Smith, Wall Street Journal (paywall), Oct. 11, 2015 7:33 p.m. ET

    U.S. coal companies and at least 16 state governments are working on challenges to the Obama administration’s new rule limiting carbon emissions from power plants. Most electric utilities have a different strategy: They are embracing it.

    From Dominion Resources Inc. in Virginia to Dynegy Inc. in Houston to Ohio’s FirstEnergy Corp., electricity producers say they plan to comply rather than contest the regulation.

    The main reason, executives and experts say, is that economic forces are pushing the power industry inexorably toward a lower-carbon future.

    • Boomer II says:

      That article reinforces my contention that Republican politicians may find that before long there won’t be much political benefit in favoring the fossil fuel and related industries over renewables.

    • Electric utilities are regulated so they can pass on costs to their customers. They have to please their utility commissions, but also want good pr. This is why the Obama game is like cancer. Some innocent victims will have it and not realize they’re goners until it’s too late. This reminds me a lot of the bush bullshit about Iraq. Look where the USA is now, over $1 Trillion and 40 thousand casualties later….

  27. aws. says:

    Buy or sell? Both, if you listen to Canada’s oil patch (paywall)

    Jeffrey Jones, business section of the Globe and Mail, Tuesday, Oct. 13, 2015 6:42PM EDT

    The oil industry wants investors to sell its shares.

    Or so it seems. A scan of some of the submissions to Alberta’s Climate Change Panel and other recent communications from the sector’s lobby group leaves an unintended and unfortunate impression – that in good times or bad, oil companies are a lousy investment.

  28. Caelan MacIntyre says:

    ~ Double Bill ~

    “Go-o-o-od morning, slaves and welcome to another sedition of

    It’s The End of The World As We Know It and I Feel Fine.

    The show that believes that all cats are beautiful.”

  29. Caelan MacIntyre says:

    “Go-o-o-od morning, slaves and welcome to another sedition of

    It’s The End of The World As We Know It and I Feel Fine.

    The show where vibes go to get harshed.”

  30. Caelan MacIntyre says:

    The Parable of The Violent Tribe

    The State As A Monopoly On Violence

    Is Washington Trying To Start World War III?

    Swedes can be kept over the starvation line if only 25% of oil imports disappear,

    “…but we will experience food shortages and risk of starvation if a larger oil shock occurs (50-75%). Looking at the export-import data some commentators have estimated that 90% of all oil imports will be gone by 2030. And this is probably a conservative estimate since it doesn’t account for sudden shocks due to an economic crisis, conflict, and so on.” ~ PeakOil

    • Old Farmer Mac says:

      Caelan this one is for you.

      But everybody ought to read it. And lose some sleep over it. And forward the link to their friends.

      • Caelan MacIntyre says:

        Thanks for sharing, Old Farmer Mac. Nice leisure suit/human discoball.

      • The best way to confuse them is to have a couple of 16 year olds you trust with your passwords and swap cellphones and portable computers with them. I get suggestions to buy skateboards, visit Korea for video game training, and monster truck shows.

        • It has been my point before– the fact that other people can and do– by permission and otherwise– use our computers and, for example, metaphorically plant drugs on them, and otherwise lay down false tracks– plausible deniability, double agents and all that.

          But still, part of the idea behind Permaea is about turning the tables, such as if Permaea could integrate, say, Wikileaks and Anonymous as ‘plugins’ and for example, help create a public database of names and addresses for Governpimp™ and subsidiaries who want to give Permaeans a hard time. Easy to type about, though, and harder to implement, especially what with all the traitorism, lack of solidarity, general cluelessness, social irresponsibility and/or apathy running around.

  31. Ronald Walter says:

    The number of petroleum cars hauled in week 40 of 2015, 9,142. In 2014, week 40 petroleum cars hauled was 11,577.

    A noticeable difference. 20 percent less demand for rail deliveries for the oil.

    From Saturday evening to Wednesday late morning my vehicle traveled a total of four miles, two beer runs. Maybe a pint and a half of gas was consumed so my consumption is down for those four days by more than 50 times! There must be an award for an achievement like that, with a cash bonus, of course. 500 million dollars would be enough for now.

    No wonder BNSF is hauling 2400 fewer petroleum cars in a week.

    BNSF coal hauls increased from 44,000 plus coal cars to 46,000 plus from 2014 to 2105, week 40.

    Coal is a hot commodity!

    • Watcher says:

      Might want to start readjusting your comps, R. We’re now past significant oil price fall time frame for last year. Maybe comp to 2013 months.

    • MarbleZeppelin says:

      Overall, coal transport by rail is way down compared to previous years.

  32. Doug Leighton says:

    I’m not sure if this is a taboo subject, or not.


    “The location of bubble plumes off the Pacific Northwest supports the idea that gradual ocean warming at about a third of a mile down may be releasing frozen methane in the seafloor.”

    • MarbleZeppelin says:

      East Siberian Arctic Shelf methane venting to the atmosphere is found to be equivalent to previous estimates of the total world ocean methane venting.

      • Doug Leighton says:

        That’s an interesting paper that I hadn’t run into before.

      • Don Wharton says:

        Marble I have not read the article. However, Shakhova has a reputation that would suggest that we should want confirmation from other sources. I am certain that the IPCC would not put this finding in a future report without significant confirming evidence.

        • MarbleZeppelin says:

          Don, could you be more specific about Shakova’s reputation? Maybe some examples of how she got it.
          I doubt if we will get much confirming evidence aside from the Russians, due to the difficulty in studying this remote region.

          • Don Wharton says:

            I don’t have the time to properly address your question. Shakhova appears in a good number of videos and published reports that are available on the web. I have viewed a good number of them. In general I think that the IPCC is substantially understating the risks of global warming. In general I would be someone who is quite open to the positions she is espousing. However, she does strike me as being “alarmist” by my very liberal standards. I have also read extensively in the various IPCC reports and the wider literature. This suggests to me that the very conservative consensus building standards of the IPCC would never accept Shakhova without substantial confirming evidence. We need better tools, either with redundant teams with vastly more sampling of data, or better satellite measurements. This is a critical issue and humanity needs to invest in the science required to answer it.

            • She’s blowing methane.

            • Don Wharton says:

              She’s perhaps seeing a lot of methane in very small areas. Few people will trust her unless there is robust and widespread confirmation from sources that have not been promoting this specific message.

  33. Old Farmer Mac says:

    This link is about revisiting the data on the cost of renewable energy on the levelized cost basis. It goes into more detail than the recent discussion here.

    My own guess is that all the nice figures given are accurate within say plus or minus ten percent or so.

    This leads me to believe that wind and solar farms built in good spots TODAY will be producing electricity for the last half or two thirds of their expected life at less than the DIRECT monetary cost of coal and gas fired generation- given that I expect the cost of both coal and gas to increase sharply within ten years.

    Furthermore as Alan from Big Easy used to point out, a rail road tunnel built well over a century ago is still as useful as ever.

    Wind and solar farms will NEVER REALLY wear out. If necessary, as towers age , the up top generation equipment can be downsized a bit to allow for possible tower fatigue.

    And ground mounted solar panels can be swapped out piecemeal by a couple of technicians as the need arises.

    Hardly any of the infrastructure in either case will EVER need to be replaced outright, with the exception of turbines and generators- both of which can most likely be refurbished or remanufactured for another twenty years of service if newer more efficient designs aren’t more economical.

    OLD pv panels that are producing less will be easy to sell to people who have plenty of space and can justify larger arrays based on the low cost of used panels.

    Up thread someplace Doug linked to the SHELL ceo saying the current low price of oil was NOT the reason SHELL stopped Arctic exploration. I believe he was telling it like SHELL management thinks it is- that oil will be up sharply, up enough to justify Arctic extraction costs, within a decade.

    Maybe I am too pessimistic, but I just can’t see gas staying cheap for a decade or longer, and while there IS plenty of coal in the ground, governments mostly have a policy of deliberately inflating fiat money. Coal prices will go up based on nothing more than the actual cost of mining and delivering the coal. Various states and local governments and countries will find the possibility of an extraction tax on coal too good to pass it up- such taxes will be levied as sure as the sun comes up.

    Wyoming and Montana coal costs five times as much delivered in the southeast as it costs at the mine mouth. Those two states could put a five dollar a ton tax on their coal without any really serious loss of sales, just because of it costing so much to transport coal from the next closest available source.

    I could buy a Coca Cola for a nickel when I was a little boy. Now most people will not bend over to pick up a nickel except if they feel compelled to clean up after themselves if they drop a nickel.

    Methinks the death of inflation has been greatly exaggerated.

    • Doug Leighton says:

      Perhaps but coal use isn’t going to diminish anytime soon, at least in India.

      “Australia’s government has given its approval for one of the world’s biggest coal mines to be built by India’s Adani Mining in Queensland.”

      • Dennis Coyne says:

        Hi Doug,

        When the cost of coal (including the hidden health costs) go up to the point that electricity produced by coal is more expensive than alternatives, the less will be used.
        Countries such as Australia, the US, Russia, and South Africa should tax coal at the mine mouth to account for both the health costs and the global warming risk, but it will probably not happen. The external costs will be ignored and be a burden on the less fortunate, just as it has always been. So called “free” markets only are optimal if external costs are properly taxed and regulated.

        • Doug Leighton says:

          “Countries such as Australia, the US, Russia, and South Africa should tax coal at the mine mouth to account for both the health costs and the global warming risk, but it will probably not happen.” Is that what happens in the US? If so, I didn’t realize there was a nationwide tax (carbon tax) levied on coal in the United States.

          • Dennis Coyne says:

            Hi Doug,

            No it does not happen in the US, I said it should happen. I don’t believe carbon taxes are in place anywhere except Europe and maybe Japan, definitely not in the US, probably not in Russia and South Africa, possibly in Australia though it seems to depend on the most recent election. according to Wikipedia the carbon tax in Australia was repealed in 2014.

            The most effective way to tax fossil fuels is at the wellhead or mine mouth and simply add a carbon tax to any other taxes already collected.

            Unfortunately most countries are unwilling to do this, depletion will raise fossil fuel prices eventually, not the best way to do things, but it will move things in the right direction.

            • Old Farmer Mac says:

              Hi Dennis,

              Do you know of any good arguments against a government putting a severance tax on coal SIMPLY for the purpose of raising revenue?

              Of course the OWNERS of the coal so taxed wouldn’t like it at all, but people do seem to have a near insatiable appetite for government provided goods and services …..

              AND sooner or later an up and coming politician will figure out that he can get elected based on a” tax the coal and lower the tax on your house” platform.

              • Dennis Coyne says:

                Hi Old Farmer Mac,

                No the only reason I could see is fairness, if we are taxing coal, we should give some reason, pollution could be a viable reason, certainly there is more pollution from coal, than from oil or natural gas. The coal companies would argue that exported coal doesn’t hurt any US citizens from pollution so that coal exports should not be taxed. For those that think either that climate change is not a problem or that it is beneficial (I am not among those, but they do exist), such arguments would seem sensible and they would not want to hurt the hard working coal miners who might lose their jobs due to the tax on coal. I would argue that the health costs of coal burned in North America and the fact that just as many new jobs would be created in Wind Power and Solar Power as the jobs lost in the coal industry would make your idea a no brainer.

                I am influenced by the fact that the emissions of carbon dioxide per BTU of coal are higher than oil or natural gas so this would be a good place to start reducing our fossil fuel use. Next step oil, then natural gas.

                • Old Farmer Mac says:

                  I am thinking more on the lines of purely and simply raising revenue because revenue COULD be raised by taxing coal exported outside the jurisdiction of the government collecting the tax.

                  If for instance coal producers in country A have significantly lower production and shipping costs than producers from country B, then A could levy a modest tax on exported coal without doing much if any harm to the domestic coal industry.

                  Industry profits would be less of course- but so long as the tax levied is not EXCESSIVELY high, the industry should remain healthy.

                  Why SHOULD any industry be exempted from paying MORE taxes so other industries and individuals can pay LESS – other than politics?

                  Tax rates are raised and lowered on many many goods and services quite often.

                  From my pov the answer basically depends on which political dog wins the fight.

                  Some countries base their budget almost entirely on oil export taxes.

                  I just can’t see any reason why some countries will not eventually tax exported coal to the extent the domestic coal industry can pay.

                  It seems very likely to me that eventually coal WILL be taxed for this reason by some coal exporting countries that have relatively low production and shipping costs.

                  Pollution control is no doubt a good reason to tax coal, but it can also serve quite well as justification for collecting every possible dime in taxes – especially in export taxes.

                  Producers in countries with high production costs and high shipping costs can’t likely afford to pay much more, if any more, tax.

                  • Dennis Coyne says:

                    Hi Old Farmer Mac,

                    I misunderstood. So you are talking about taxes on exported coal. Here is the problem.
                    If all coal exporting countries don’t impose such a tax, then the country with the taxes puts their coal industry at a competitive disadvantage relative to coal exporters from Australia or South Africa (if the taxes were imposed on US coal producers).

                    Methinks the coal producers that get taxed would complain loudly.

                  • Nick G says:

                    I believe that WTO rules prevent signatory countries from taxing exports more than domestic consumption.

                    You have to tax all consumers equally.

                    Of course, you’re allowed to go the other way: you can apply sales/VAT taxes to domestic consumption and forgive them on exports.

                  • “I believe that WTO rules…”

                    WTO of course has little to do with democracy and in fact the Permaea manifesto has this link about the WTO:

                    WTO: Why Is It Bad For You?

            • Nick G says:

              Here are some, from the last time I looked:

              California Bay Area Air Quality Management District, which covers nine counties in the San Francisco Bay Area: carbon tax on businesses of 4.4 cents per ton
              Montgomery County: $5 per ton on single large coal plant, repealed for technical reasons by lawsuit.
              British Colombia, Canada: $30/ton.
              Quebec at about $3.50/ton.
              Alberta, Canada: $15/ton
              Boulder CO: .09 cents/kWH for commercial, .03 for industrial, .49 residential.

              • Old Farmer Mac says:

                I am not very knowledgeable about WTO regulations but it appears they are made to be broken or circumvented one way or another.

                Now I am pulling some numbers out of thin air to make this example but I can’t see any reason it couldn’t work.

                Let us suppose Australian coal producers have a four dollar a ton shipping cost advantage when selling coal to China, compared to the next cheapest country.

                So- Suppose Australia puts a two dollar a ton tax on ALL Australian coal, used domestically OR exported.Aussie coal would still be cheaper for the Chinese than coal from the next cheapest exporter.

                Now lets say Australia burns ten percent of production, and exports ninety percent.

                I believe it would be possible to sell the people of the country on the export tax, since for every dollar the coal tax costs them, they would get back eighteen in tax revenue.

                The coal companies wouldn’t like it of course , but when it comes to taxes, every body plays the hardest hard ball game possible.

                Some industries seem to get off awfully cheap, air ports for instance. Airlines pay virtually nothing it terms of fuel taxes, but they use airports built mostly or exclusively with tax money and haul a lot of freight these days as well.

                I am perfectly ready to vote for a fuel tax on jet fuel equal to the taxes I pay on gasoline and diesel fuel.

                And for what it is worth, I am ready to vote for a CONFISCATORY tax on every thing that belongs to anybody who is even remotely connected to any auto dialing telephone business. Damned phone rings all day, but I need it ON.

    • Most of the valuable equipment in a wind or solar kit will be like a surplus pt boat from ww2 in 30 years. Furthermore, they do have a maintenance cost. For solar and wind I would use opex equal to 3% of the capital investment, per year, until further notice. And then there’s the battery cost.

  34. Heinrich Leopold says:

    The weekly petroleum status report just came out:

    Total production 9,096 000 b/d
    Alaska 490 000 b/d
    Lower 48 8,606 000 b/d

    Domestic US production is just up 145 000 b/d and soon production will be down year over year. It looks like the decline in production starts in earnest.

    • AlexS says:

      Alaska: +3
      Lower 48: -79
      Total US: -76

    • AlexS says:

      EIA monthly vs weekly data:

      • Jeffrey J. Brown says:

        Based on the monthly EIA data, 9.6 million bpd to 9.0 million bpd (5/03 to 9/03), the exponential annual rate of decline would be about 20%/year. If this (net) rate of decline continued, US C+C production would be down to about 7.4 million bpd in September, 2016.

        Note that the observed two year net rate of decline in Louisiana’s gas production from 2012 to 2014 was 20%/year.

        • Dennis Coyne says:

          Hi Jeffrey,

          If oil prices remain less than $50/b until Sept 2016, possibly that might happen, but trends do not always continue, there have been many cases where output has declined, but very few where the decline rate has remained constant.

          From 1985 to 2005 the annual decline in US C+C output was about 2.5% per year, that would be a much better estimate of future decline rates of US output over the long term. We will see high rates of decline for 6 months or so and they will quickly diminish to the long term rate of decline.

          • Jeffrey J. Brown says:

            So, you expect that tight/shale wells will have long term rates of decline similar to conventional fields like Prudhoe Bay?

            Annual exponential rates of change in Louisiana’s marketed gas production (EIA) from July, 2012 to July, 2015, relative to July, 2012 (from mix of shale + conventional production):

            7/12 to 7/13: -22%/year
            7/12 to 7/14: -20%/year
            7/12 to 7/15: -16%/year

            The three year simple percentage decline in production was about 40%. Again, this was the net decline in Louisiana’s marketed gas production, after new wells were added.

            Measured from the monthly peak in December, 2011, it took about two and a half years for the exponential rate of decline in monthly marketed gas production to fall below 20%/year. The three year 12/11 to 12/14 rate of decline was 18.5%/year.

            • Doug Leighton says:

              Jeff, obviously you know this but others may not. The IEA 2008 World Oil Report concentrated on defining future decline rates. They published a production-weighted average decline rate worldwide of 6.7% as of 2007. This is predicted to rise to 8.6% by 2030 as more and more old giant fields pass their plateau and start to decline, and the long tail of global production shifts to smaller more rapidly depleted oilfields. As of the IEA 2010 World Oil Report the IEA stood by these predictions. REFERENCE: OILFIELD DECLINE RATES.

              And for a thorough (somewhat technical) analysis of Prudhoe Bay I recommend:



              “All evidence points to continuation of the established decline. To that end, two decline curves are calculated to project production rates to 2010: 7-9%/year low side and 12%/year high side. These decline curves bracket the range of production rates that can be expected from the continuation of aggressive operations.”

              • Jeffrey J. Brown says:

                And the question that I have periodically posed, to-wit: If it took trillions of dollars in upstream capex to keep us on an “Undulating Plateau,” in actual global crude oil production (45 and lower API gravity crude, i.e., the quantity of the stuff corresponding to WTI & Brent oil prices), what happens to global crude oil production going forward given the ongoing cutbacks in global upstream capex?

                Regarding life’s little ironies, we keep hearing that oil exports from a net oil importer, the US (with recent four week running average net crude oil imports of 6.8 million bpd), will have a meaningful impact on global oil markets, just as the US is currently showing a 20%/year annualized rate of decline in C+C production.

                • Fred Magyar says:

                  Regarding life’s little ironies, we keep hearing that oil exports from a net oil importer, the US (with recent four week running average net crude oil imports of 6.8 million bpd), will have a meaningful impact on global oil markets, just as the US is currently showing a 20%/year annualized rate of decline in C+C production.

                  Abracadabra! Now how does he do that?!

                  • MarbleZeppelin says:

                    The oil business and conservative right wingers want ANWAR and oil export. Those are right wing trophies. Won’t change much from an energy standpoint, will do a lot of harm, but they want that win. That will be two thorns in their sides that will be removed.

                • Longtimber says:


                  If this passes and we happen to get a superspike who would ever vote Rep again when your stuck in a gas line.

          • Dunno. We have more shale and deep water, and lots more marginal wells. It will depend on prices.

      • Amatoori says:

        Thx for quick updates AlexS. From which month back is the EIA numbers revisited?
        Had a feeling you had a shown graph on that before, or am I mistaken me? E.g. Weekly, STEO, and Revisited? One funny thing on the weekly prod. number today was the same as the build last week.

        Thx for all quick updates

        • AlexS says:


          The EIA monthly numbers are revised each month (last time on September 30). The STEO monthly numbers (last released on October 6) include the revised historical numbers (to August) and the EIA’s projections (to Dec. 2016).
          Weekly statistics are never revised. Hence the discrepancy between weekly and monthly numbers

  35. Watcher says:

    Pretty sure Libya is still shut in so don’t y’all worry yourselves about a little US output downtick.

    Iran and Libya should be able to make up that shortage.

    And don’t worry about pumping at a profit either. Profit is not physically required for pumping. In the New Normal, it’s not financially required, either.

    • HR says:

      Not trying to cheer us up are you?

      • shallow sand says:

        HR. Cue the often quoted $5 oil Economist article, which was in the 3/4/1999 issue.

        3/23/99 OPEC cuts, by 12/99 WTI had more than tripled.

        Oh yeah, this time is different, it always is per everyone, such as the author of said Economist article.

        And if this time is different, what are the various state governments going to do with over 1 million well bores, and the Federal with all those in GOM? Will take years to sort that one out.

        • Watcher says:

          Pretty sure Argentina is pumping at a profit at $77/barrel. That’s the price there.

          • Fred Magyar says:

            That has to be putting a bit of a strain on their currency reserves. I can’t imagine them being able to keep paying those prices for the long term if global prices remain depressed. But hey, I’ve kinda of given up on trying to make any sense whatsoever of the global economy, there really seem to be different rules applied for different people…

            • Watcher says:

              There are no rules. None that need exist. The substance is imaginary and it’s not Newton’s laws or any other law of nature. You can change definitions whimsically to keep the ball rolling, because if it stops rolling the people with the ability to change definitions lose their position. So what would you do?

              Argentina, btw, that oh so horrible place of decrepitude, exports food. Think about that. The only thing that matters . . . they have a surplus. mazamascience says they ended the growth of oil imports last year. Production flattened from a decline. That’s the only other thing that matters.

              • Dennis Coyne says:

                Hi Watcher,

                I am not familiar with the politics of Argentina.

                Let’s do a thought experiment. The US government restricts oil imports to some level that pushes the oil price up to $77/b when the rest of the World is paying $50/b where imports are allowed to flow freely (no oil import restrictions on the quantity imported or the price of those imports). Do you think members of Congress that voted for such a measure would be re-elected? I don’t.

                My guess is that the government in Argentina is not freely elected, if your often quoted $77/b (US dollar) oil price in Argentina is correct.

        • AlexS says:

          shallow sand,

          You said: “what are the various state governments going to do with over 1 million well bores, and the Federal with all those in GOM? Will take years to sort that one out.”

          It’s not the first time. The highest weekly US rig count was 4,530 recorded in December 1981. It dropped to 686 by July 1986 and bottomed at 488 in April 1999. It’s a boom and bust cycle

          • shallow sand says:

            AlexS. I agree it is a boom and bust cycle.

            My point is there are about 800,000 or so oil and natural gas wells that are defined as stripper wells, meaning 15 bbl per day oil, 90 mcf day gas, or less. That was in 2009. The average of all the oil strippers was 2.9 bopd and the average of all gas strippers was 26 mcfpd, if memory serves me correctly. (I looked at EIA chart a few minutes ago). This was in 2009, so I am sure these wells have declined more and many new ones added.

            At sub $40 oil and sub $2 gas at the wellhead, how many of these are under water?

            And, if prices do not recover these will all have to be plugged. Furthermore, if the operating companies go bust, depending on the state, there may not be enough money to plug them.

            • Dennis Coyne says:

              Hi Shallow sand,

              I think sub-40 oil is not a very realistic number, I think 45 to 50/b until 2Q2016 might be realistic, but this is very difficult to predict.
              Will there be more output from Libya and Iran that will balance declines from non-OPEC producers? How quickly will non-OPEC output decline? What will happen to World demand? Nobody can answer these questions with any accuracy, but my guess is that at sub 40 oil prices there will be relatively steep declines in non-OPEC output and relatively modest increases (or no increase) in OPEC output and such low prices would not last for more than a week.

              But I am usually wrong on oil prices.

        • HR says:

          I’ll tell you what partner, I ain’t buying this shit one damn bit. Yeah, everybody overbuilt and we have a surplus right now. Last time I checked that happens in real estate, ore, copper on and on. But there isn’t another market as important as crude. 94 million barrels a day and we’re in a terrible economy being strangled by these idiots that have no idea how to run a country or manage money. And demand is growing. Estimates of 1.5 million more needed barrels a day thru next year. Low prices cure low prices.
          I’ll kiss your ass if deep water oil doesn’t drop by 10-15% thru next year. Same with shale. What about the stripper guys? North shore Alaska? That’s at least 3 million barrels a day right there. With a net net of around 4 million barrels a day change with the increase in demand. Even with Iran and another million barrels, somewhere near a balanced market. One of my gripes about all the analyses done here is that it’s hard to tell what the conclusions are. And that’s what I’m looking for.
          A good question…are the shale guys drilling enough new holes to do how much production? What’s an educated guess?
          Furthermore I still maintain that on a worldwide arena, guys aren’t going to bust their ass to bring oil to market if they’re not going to make money. Or worse they’ll lose money. All the charts and talking heads will not change that.

          • Watcher says:

            Where was it being stored again? I forgot the amazing discovery of (2.5 mbpd surplus X about 450 days =) 1.1 billion barrels (and remember all those SPRs were already full). Where were those tanks again?

            If banks will loan money to pump oil, from shale or deep water or anywhere, and not care much if they aren’t paid back, then oil will pump.

            • Czesio z Grajewa says:

              Banks can lend currency. You call currency money, because banks don’t lend to companies that won’t repay it.

            • Old Farmer Mac says:

              It COULD be that the surplus question is as simple as dirt. At a hundred bucks a barrel, maybe there WAS a two million barrel surplus.

              At fifty bucks, maybe there is NO surplus.

  36. Boomer II says:

    I guess if Oklahoma can’t or won’t do anything, then we just wait and see what happens. If there is a major accident, I suppose it can serve as a warning.

    New Concern Over Quakes in Oklahoma Near a Hub of U.S. Oil – The New York Times: Scientists reported in a paper published online last month that a large earthquake near the storage hub “could seriously damage storage tanks and pipelines.” Saturday’s quake continues a worrisome pattern of moderate quakes, suggesting that a large earthquake is more than a passing concern, the lead author of that study, Daniel McNamara, said in an interview.

    • Those earthquakes are probably being caused by fault slip in minor faults, due to reservoir pressure being increased too high by water disposal operations. They should consider injecting in old abandoned gas reservoirs.

  37. aws. says:

    Duality in climate science

    A commentary published in Nature Geoscience (online Oct. 2015)

    Kevin Anderson,,

    Climate modellers are self-censoring their scenarios to conform to the dominant political paradigm

    Brief Abstract:

    The commentary demonstrates the endemic bias prevalent amongst many of those developing emission scenarios to severely underplay the scale of the 2°C mitigation challenge. In several important respects the modelling community is self-censoring its research to conform to the dominant political and economic paradigm. Moreover, there is a widespread reluctance of many within the climate change community to speak out against unsupported assertions that an evolution of ‘business as usual’ is compatible with the IPCC’s 2°C carbon budgets. With specific reference to energy, this analysis concludes that even a slim chance of “keeping below” a 2°C rise, now demands a revolution in how we both consume and produce energy. Such a rapid and deep transition will have profound implications for the framing of contemporary society and is far removed from the rhetoric of green growth that increasingly dominates the climate change agenda.


    In stark contrast, this commentary concludes that the carbon budgets needed for a reasonable probability of avoiding the 2°C characterisation of dangerous climate change demand profound and immediate changes to the consumption and production of energy. The IPCC’s own 1,000 GtCO2 carbon budget for a “likely” chance of 2°C, requires global reductions in emissions from energy of at least 10% p.a. by 2025, with complete cessation of all carbon dioxide emissions from the energy system by 2050.


    ‘Geo-engineering’ as systemic bias
    The analysis within this Commentary makes no allowance for carbon budgets being increased through the adoption of ‘geo-engineering’ technologies, specifically those delivering so-called negative emissions. Such technologies are ubiquitous in 2°C scenarios9,10, despite their remaining at little more than the conceptual stage of development. However, whilst speculative negative emissions are de rigueur, similarly imprecise Earth system processes (but with the potential to reduce the available budgets) are seldom included in quantitative scenarios.

    • Joshua Arthurs says:

      The only thing at risk from climate change is common sense and taxpayer’s wallets as liberals launch another one of their wealth redistribution schemes designed to bilk hardworking middle class taxpayers of billions of $ and exert control over the “takers” of society by giving them more hand outs.

      • Lorina Faustino says:

        You got it, Joshua!

      • Walt Sehorn says:

        That’s telling it like it is.

      • Joshua Arthurs says:

        Thanks folks. Clearly I’m not the only one who believes this way.

      • Ralph says:

        What a wonderful demonstration of confirmation bias.

        • Old Farmer Mac says:

          Joshua, Lorina, Walt and Ralph all working together for a week couldn’t come up with a decent description of the way the peer review process actually works on the grand scale.

          It gets sort of bothersome to repeat this , but for the sake of any kids or open minded people who unfortunately never took a real science class, here goes.

          First off you get published in a legitimate journal if you do original research. This publication is dependent on your research being carefully examined by at least three other people recognized as expert in the field. It will be rejected if they find serious problems.

          IF this were the end of the peer review process, it would indeed be POSSIBLE for like minded money grubbing unethical climate scientists to fake it and create fake journals.

          The problem with this scenario is that research journals are published and sold or made available free to anybody with the desire to read them. These outsider readers include literally TENS of THOUSANDS of scientists who work in OTHER FIELDS.

          A well known climate journal will number thousands of physicists, chemists, geologists, biologists, etc etc among its readers. Each and every one of these outsiders stands to make his name and his fortune if he can find anything wrong with the papers the journal publishes. Each and every last one of them!

          The entire process, in the end, is a lot like a long, long trial in a court of law, with the jury members being the scientists both in and OUT of the field of climate science. As a matter of fact, the large majority of the scientists ” on the jury” will NOT be involved in climate science at all.

          A very large majority of all practicing scientists who trouble themselves to examine the climate issue conclude forced warming is real and will get a LOT worse.

          A tenured science professor is ALWAYS on the look out for an opportunity to show any and everybody else up. That’s one of the two ways for him to make a name for himself, the other being to make original discoveries.

          • Ralph says:

            Maybe I should have made my comment a bit clearer. I was noting
            Joshua Arthurs , Walt Sehorn and Lorina Faustino confirming each other’s bias. I have chemistry degree from a (world top 10) scientific institution, and I am very much aware of the peer review process, and its overall track record. Tax payer funded science is now an extremely cut throat occupation, and every cent of funding has to be justified by publication if the next grant is to come your way. This tends to lead safe, middle of the road research, and few researchers going out on either limb of either too radical or too reactionary on any theme. My suspicion is that most climate research is not nearly alarmist enough. Very few of the scientist I know are tenured, they are on short term contracts. By contrast, commercially funded research feels a lot less pressure to publish, and you would be amazed at the number of medical trials that never make it to publication at all because they fail to demonstrate just how wonderful the effects of the billion dollar drug on trail have been. /sarc

            • Old Farmer Mac says:

              Sorry about that Ralph.!

              Since your comment followed right on behind the other three, who were commenting in part about confirmation bias among climate scientists, I jumped to the conclusion you were with them.

              My only pathetic excuse is that I had not yet had my wake up dose of caffeine. lol.

              I USUALLY recognize sarcasm when it is served with a shovel.

              A sarcasm tag is always useful in such situations. 😉

              I agree with you all the way in respect to your ten twenty eight.

              A lot of research that ought to be funded is not, and a lot that is is as you say, middle of the road safe.

              But eventually the people who are a little more radical come to occupy the middle of the road- if they turn out good results justifying other researchers following their lead.

              In the end , researchers eventually weed out the weak work, leaving only the strong, sort of like a sculptor creating a statue by removing every thing that IS NOT part of the finished work.

              I am perfectly willing to believe that forced climate change will be a lot worse, and will show up a lot sooner, than the IPCC models indicate.

              The only real reason I see to question the models is that imo the modelers overestimate the future supplies of fossil fuels.

              But otoh I don’t put too much faith in the models either way, because there may be and probably will be some unexpected things happening. There are probably some important but as yet unknown feed back loops both positive and negative etc.

              My personal guess is that the models are reasonably accurate at the lower end of expecting warming but not nearly pessimistic enough at the upper end. That puts us on the same page and maybe even on the same paragraph.

              • wimbi says:

                Good work, Mac. I would add a few words from the manager side of the R&D team.

                1) what’s the worst case?
                2)what are the consequences of worst case?
                3) what’s probability of worst case?
                4) how much effort should we expend to reduce probability?

                If worst case is not all that bad, and if worst consequences not either, and if probability is hot high, then forget it.
                Example Charley, go up town and get some beer for the beerblast tonight.
                Worst case, can’t find any, consequence, some less happy guys, probability, low.

                Decision- Go Charley.

                If worst case is very bad indeed, and if consequences are global catastrophe, and if probability is on high side, then work like hell to reduce it.
                Example- global warming. Worst case, catastrophe for biosphere, consequence. Real bad for all us bios, for a long time; probability, fairly high.

                Decision, sit around quibbling about capex of holes in permafrost. Then work like hell to dig those holes.

      • Jimmy says:

        I believe coming to a Peak Oil blog to refute climate change is what psychologists call ‘binary opposition disorder’. Someone needs an audience.

    • The commentary demonstrates nothing. It’s the typical bullshit we see in nature publications. Things aren’t going well for them in Paris.

  38. aws. says:

    Antarctic ice sheets face catastrophic collapse without deep emissions cuts

    Study finds that a global temperature increase of 3C would cause ice shelves to disappear, triggering sea-level rise that would continue for thousands of years

    Karl Mathiesen, The Guardian, Wednesday 14 October 2015 18.36 BST

    The new study “ultimately confirm[s] the suspicions of earlier glaciologists that the fate of ice shelves largely determines whether Antarctica contributes less than 1 metre or up to 9 metres to long-term sea-level rise”, wrote the California Institute of Technology scientist Alexander Robel in an accompanying comment piece in Nature.

    Hilmar Gudmundsson, a scientist at the British Antarctic Survey, said the changes between 2100 and 2300 were “large and alarming” although the degree of uncertainty was still high.

    In 2014, professor Eric Rignot, a senior researcher at Nasa, made the dramatic finding that the west Antarctic ice sheet and its 4 metres (13ft) worth of sea-level rise had already started slipping away. He said the paper’s assertion that the loss of this ice sheet could be stopped was “hardly believable” because the projections lacked reliable modelling of ocean circulation and iceberg calving. He said the loss of the West Antarctic sheet was “inevitable”; the only thing humans could control was how fast it goes.

    • Lorina Faustino says:

      Hmmm…’s not hard to find articles out there discussing how the largest antarctic ice cover ever seen on record has occurred during the AGW era. Your contradictory article from the taxpayer funded World of Research at politicized institutions like public universities and NASA just goes to show that plenty of complex thoughts and theories are out there; however, far more times than not simple common sense will be able to tell you what is really going on. It’s weather being weather and climate cycles being climate cycles. There will be stretches moving forward where I’m sure where winters are mild, ice cover much less, little to no snow, and so on. Though none of that means there is anything out of the norm going on. Nevertheless the taxpayer funded climate people are sure to still cling to any temperature change they think they see and link their misguided agenda to it. In other words, they’ll give a textbook example of what it is like to be in a cult, you blindly believe anything and everything that even remotely aligns and justifies your distorted world view.

      • Boomer II says:

        I don’t normally response to posts by people who aren’t regulars here and only want to challenge climate info, but since you make such a big deal about “taxpayer funded” research, can I assume you’re okay with research done by businesses, like the insurance industry?

        Climate Change: Insurance Issues | III: Insurance industry groups are studying the effects of climate change on the industry. The Geneva Association, whose members represent the world’s largest insurers and reinsurers, agreed in May 2009 to continue its CC I research project on climate change and its economic impact on insurance. In a comprehensive report, “The Insurance Industry and Climate Change–Contribution to the Global Debate,” the association sets out the issues and the role insurance can play in the process of adapting to the negative effects of change, particularly in developing countries.

        • Boomer II says:

          Here’s another one.

          SOA – Society of Actuaries – Determining the Impact of Climate Change on Insurance Risk and the Global Community Phase 1: Key Climate Indicators: The Casualty Actuarial Society, Canadian Institute of Actuaries, Society of Actuaries, and the American Academy of Actuaries’ Property/Casualty Extreme Events Committee have responded to this emerging risk by collaboratively commissioning committees to recommend, support, and perform research on climate change and assess the potential risk management implications for the insurance industry.

        • Boomer II says:

          Yet another.

          Climate change – Putting knowledge to use, devising solutions | Munich Re – Corporate Responsibility: Increased flooding, heatwaves, droughts and severe storms: for over 40 years, Munich Re has been researching the changes in the frequency of weather-related loss events and has made use of this knowledge to understand weather and climate risks better, and to develop solutions for them.

          • Lorina Faustino says:

            I just said that winters keep getting milder and milder, with ice cover much less, and with little to no snow, and so on!
            But the question is where the money comes from. This affects the research.

            • Dennis Coyne says:

              Hi Lorina,

              The insurance companies are funded by insurance premiums.

              • I seriously doubt insurance companies are financing much research. They may be doing something for propaganda purposes. If they can get a higher risk assigned to a region they do get to raise insurance rates when they work in a regulated environment. If the risk is exaggerated they pocket the excess charges.

                • Boomer II says:

                  When there are natural disasters, they do pay out more in premiums. They don’t just jack up the rates with abandon.

                  In areas with more fires, more floods, and so on, if the insurance rates themselves don’t go up, then governments end up subsidizing the rates.

                  It’s relatively easy to see a connection between natural disasters and increased rates. I doubt that the insurance companies need to “fake” disasters as an excuse to raise rates.

                  • Boomer II says:

                    Here’s this.

                    The fact that businesses are getting into the climate change picture has been my point all along.

                    I don’t deny that there is money to be made from renewable energy, energy efficiency, natural disaster preparedness, and so on.

                    That’s why the argument that it’s all a leftist conspiracy is a bit far fetched.

                    Call it a “new capitalist conspiracy” or a “libertarian conspiracy”, but the politics of energy changes as the money shifts.

                    If you think someone is after your money, someone is. Not leftists. Not Communists. CAPITALISTS. 🙂

                    Berkeley Lab Research Finds the Insurance Industry Paying Increasing Attention to Climate Change | Berkeley Lab

                  • Boomer II says:

                    I’ll add that there is a threat to fossil fuels. It’s that they aren’t as profitable as they once were.

                    And if other industries become more profitable, that’s where the money will go. And with that money will go political influence.

                    People call scream conspiracy all they want, but if economics shift investments elsewhere, that’s what will likely happen. Perhaps not as fast as the renewable and EV folks would like, but it will happen all the same, sooner or later.

          • Jimmy says:

            Yeah it’s amazing how 15 seconds on a search engine comes up with a lot of the answers if you really want to know. I doubt some people really want to know though. They just want to Troll the internet with their dumbfuckery.

        • Synapsid says:

          Boomer II:

          Thanks for this–I’ve been waiting a long time for someone to point out how much research on climate change is being done by the international insurance industry, and why. You spotted the appropriate opportunity and seized it. Good on ya.

          The more public awareness of this the better.

      • Lorina Faustino says:

        Of course I realize that the planet is going to hell in a handbasket, and that winters keep getting milder and milder, with ice cover much less, and with little to no snow, and so on. I just said that! But my beef lies with taxpayer funded climate people!
        But I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking Hmmm, what’s my agenda? So that’s why I am telling you straight up what it is. I have no conflict of interest, unlike the taxpayer funded climate people. Don’t believe them, believe me!

        • Fred Magyar says:

          taxpayer funded climate people.


        • SW says:

          You are an idiot. “Tax payer funded climate people”. Honestly. You are just a god damn idiot. That is like saying, tax payer funded Army people. Or tax payer funded insurance people you think that because a function is funded by the state it is evil. Well, you and your kind are fucking idiots. Period. Full stop. There is no reasoning with you. There is no point in even engaging with you because your logic is entirely inconsistent and self serving. It is trope. Devoid of intellectual content. Not worthy or a low grade moron.

          • Paul Helvik says:

            “you think that because a function is funded by the state it is evil”

            Well that is the absolute damn truth! There isn’t a thing the tax funded public sector can do that the free market can’t do more efficiently, effectively, and for less cost. Fortunately judging by the results of the last two congressional elections the majority of Americans clearly understand this. Republican majorities in both the House and Senate send a clear message that the role of lawmakers must be to reduce taxes, shrink government, and let the private sector reign.

            • Taxes have never been lower on the rich and super rich. The middle class is disappearing. If things continue as they are now there will soon be only the top 1% paying no taxes and collecting all the riches. The bottom 99% will be paying all the taxes and barely getting by.

              If by “the private sector” you are talking about all the mom and pop businesses then they are all going belly up. But if by “the private sector” you are talking about WalMart, Lowe’s, Dillards, The Home Depot, Hyundai, Honda, Ford, Chevrolet and all their ilk, then yes they are doing very fine thank you.

              And if we left everything to the Republicans the rich would continue to get richer and the poor would continue to get poorer.

              What really pisses me off is these damn Republicans have convinced these poor damn dumb country boys that they will keep protecting Guns and God and will keep the Gays in their place, completely ostracized from society and getting no rights whatsoever.

              If you are among the top 1% and a republican, I can fully understand your position. But if you are a good old boy or girl, among the bottom 99%, and believe these guys are on your side, then you are as dumb as fucking dirt.

            • Nick G says:

              How do you feel about police and fire departments, and the military?

              • Caelan MacIntyre says:

                Apparently, historically in the USA, cops started off as slave patrols. Now, they include pre-crime and killing kids before they grow up and become menaces to society. Ah, progress…

                “…when the police enforce the law, they do so unevenly, in ways that give disproportionate attention to the activities of poor people, people of color, and others near the bottom of the social pyramid. And when the police violate the law, these same people are their most frequent victims…

                The police have always been thugs, but they have traditionally been thugs in the service of elites. The crises of the 1960s produced an outbreak of police hooliganism directed against the citizenry… and a revolt against their own commanders and the civil authorities.
                The police, in short, became self-conscious political actors seeking to defend their own interests, advance their own agenda, act under their own authority, and increase their already substantial power.” ~ Kristian Williams, ‘Our Enemies In Blue’
                — —
                “…These ‘rich’ claim they own land, and the ‘poor’ are often denied the right to make that same claim. A primary purpose of the police is to enforce the delusions of those with lots of pieces of green paper… Those in power rule by force, and the sooner we break ourselves of illusions to the contrary, the sooner we can at least begin to make reasonable decisions about whether, when, and how we are going to resist.” ~ Derrick Jensen, ‘Engame’
                — —
                “It seems that the claim I and many others have made for years, that the ‘War on Terror’ is a gigantic fraud used to instill fear and further the creation of an unconstitutional surveillance state in America is absolutely true. The ‘terrorists’ they have declared war on are the American people themselves.” ~ Michael Krieger
                — —
                “[Chris] Hedges draws on classical literature and his experiences as a war correspondent to argue that war seduces entire societies, creating fictions that the public believes and relies on to continue to support conflicts… The Hurt Locker, an Academy Award-winning film, opens with a quotation from the book: ‘The rush of battle is a potent and often lethal addiction, for war is a drug.’ ” ~ Wikipedia

            • Boomer II says:

              Republican majorities in both the House and Senate send a clear message that the role of lawmakers must be to reduce taxes, shrink government, and let the private sector reign.

              If we ended all government jobs, all government contracts, and all government transfer payments, the US economy would crash.

              Republican politicians know that. They only talk about smaller government, but if they shut down the country, they would be held accountable by both business and citizens.

              I dare them to try it.

              • Boomer II says:

                In fact, as someone who thinks the world needs to consume less, I would be in favor of a massive government contraction to send everyone back to a time when each family had only one car, if that. To a time when everyone lived in small houses with few appliances. To a time when people walked and bicycled.

                Again, I dare the small government talkers to actual turn off all government money and then live with the results.

                • Boomer II says:

                  One trend we’ll likely see more of, and which may ultimately be good for reducing driving is privatization of roads.

                  We’re seeing it in certain areas where contracts to run expanded highways are being given to private companies (sometimes foreign-owned private companies). And rather than getting tax money, these companies set up tolls.

                  Going back to a system of toll roads, where those who drive on the roads have to directly pay for the roads may reduce the number of cars on the road. That is good for the environment.

                  • Greenbub says:

                    Wow, a world where only rich people can afford to go for a drive. Sounds great!

        • Ronald Walter says:

          How dare you question the motives of those who have developed a field of study of climate, the science. You think they only do it for the money. It is easy to be so cynical, maybe the cynicism is warranted, you can’t condemn the science, just the logistics become suspect.

          Taxpayers and taxpayer funded positions, government jobs, have been around for centuries. Somebody had to record daily temperatures in the sixteenth century and they did. In Sweden, somebody had to record some of that weather data back then, even if it was 500 years ago. Somebody got paid to record daily weather statistics.

          Galileo was dinking around with gravity with no financial support? No way, Jose! Tutoring, brainwashing students’ empty heads was his avocation, against the edicts of the Roman Catholic Church and its indoctrination, the goofy heretic! You will recant or the Pope will have to go to work doing God’s work.

          The Leaning Tower of Pizza (Pisa) was a perfect setting to drop great big ballbearings, sometimes mistakes are a blessing in disguise. The difference in the time when the earth is on one side of its revolution around the sun, say March 21st to when the earth is positioned on the other side of the sun on September 21st is 1000 seconds. Gravity makes it happen. The moons of Jupiter will tell you that is what happens when you are measuring time.

          Never mind that, back to who is compensated and for what.

          Unless of course, indulgences are granted, double standards, hypocrisy, corrupt practices, doctoring of what’s what, gerrymandering to steer the data to scare the besjeus out of everybody agenda driven to distraction give me the money beef, you may be onto something there. A right to question what is going on, to cast doubt, call on the carpet is sometimes necessary. You want to get to the bottom of the problem, find out what is really going on. I don’t blame you one bit. If you want to speak truth to power, you can.
          The speck in your eye will be easily found whereas the log in the eye of the person who is patronizing and condescending will never be found, the hypocrite factor.

          However, science seems to be doing something right when addressing the concerns of the amounts of fossil fuels being consumed. Totals of coal and oil consumed are known quantities and the effects are out there and quantifiable. Whether science can get it right all of the time or not, it can’t and won’t, nonetheless, an effort needs to happen, sometimes you can get it right, then something will always go wrong, but it is better than superstition. When it comes to rocket science, trial and error has its place, field testing is important. Works out the glitches, you end up with laser guidance systems that do work. Science does come in handy from time to time.

          When Halley’s Comet appeared in the sky the year Samuel Clemens was born, the year of 1835, people did not know what was possibly going to happen on earth, they were fearful.

          The sky was bright with the comet night and day, people were so frightened of what might happen to them a seventeen year-old girl, a virgin, was sacrificed. All in the hope the threat of the comet’s possible capability of raining fire and brimstone would be thwarted. The place was Oklahoma. Struck by fear, superstition prevailed, not common sense. Common sense tells me that superstition has less credence than science properly conducted, no crackpot junk science allowed.

          Common sense didn’t prevail in 1835 and it doesn’t mean a thing in 2015 either. Evidence the number of commercials for pharmaceuticals on commercial television, you only need to listen to the warnings while the commercial is airing to know something has gone terribly wrong, humanity is rife with nonsense.

          And nobody questions what is happening? No sanity allowed. Sometimes, the science is flawed.

          It is all going to hell in a hand basket in a hurry so says the cynical doomer. Enough to drive you to drink until you see pink elephants.

          When Joan Of Arc was imprisoned two prison guards were on duty to prevent Joan from being vulnerable to sexual assault if only one prison guard was on duty and the lone guard would happen to decide to let his desires be known, lust would have prevailed, not for the sex, but the lust to be the first to de-flower Joan. The lady doth protest too much so she was burned at the stake.

          Humans were irrational then, again in 1835, and still are today. It is irrational to believe humans can continue to use resources in the huge amounts being consumed and think it can continue with no consequences. Common sense tells you something must give, bend before it breaks.

          • Clueless says:

            “a seventeen year-old girl, a virgin, was sacrificed. All in the hope the threat of the comet’s possible capability of raining fire and brimstone would be thwarted. The place was Oklahoma.”
            You are making this statement for the year 1835 – The Halley’s comet year. Seems really far-fetched. In about 1832 a bunch of land was set aside as Indian Territory. So, there were some Indians there, who had no writing. No maps or compasses. Some of that land was named Oklahoma and opened to settlement in the land rush of 1889, which became a state in 1907. But, someone claims a “virgin sacrifice” in 1835 in Oklahoma. Absolute BS.
            Also, during the first half of the 19th century, the age of consent throughout the entire civilized world was in the range of 10 years old to 13 years old for girls [did not apply to boys]. Indians did not keep track of birthdays or age.

            • Ronald Walter says:

              Perhaps the most intriguing story surviving from the visit of Halley’s Comet in 1910 concerns the Oklahoma virgin who was nearly sacrificed to save the world when it came in contact with the Comet’s tail. The sheriffs arrived just in time to prevent the sacrifice of a virgin by demented Americans calling themselves “Select Followers.”

              The story first appeared on May 19, 1910 in at least two newspapers far from the alleged scene of the action in Aline, Oklahoma. However, data didn’t match concerning the young lady’s age, the place where she was found, and the clothes that she was wearing (or lack thereof). The position of the Oklahoma Historical Society is simply stated. “None of the above considerations confirm or deny the Jane Warfield story.”


              The story I read over twenty years ago probably had the wrong year and I will double check it in the future if I still have the publication. Seems as though it is all made up to a fool a gullible knothead willing to believe anything is true if it all sounds true. I will retract the misinformation. Sorry for having it all wrong.

              • MarbleZeppelin says:

                Why is it the wackos and the wreckers get all the media attention.
                I would love to see a headline like
                “95 percent of people in the world just went about their daily business or did good and helpful things today”

        • Boomer II says:

          But my beef lies with taxpayer funded climate people!

          That’s why I pointed out that insurance companies are doing their own research. These are privately owned companies. They are businesses, not supported by tax money.

          • MarbleZeppelin says:

            Notice that the beef is not defined or any supporting evidence has been produced. You have been hooked.

        • islandboy says:

          “But my beef lies with taxpayer funded climate people!

          Oh you poor things! It must be so hard, having to try and counter this global warming propaganda from all these powerful, evil, liberal, money grubbing, taxpayer funded “climate people”, all without any help from anybody or any funding whatsoever! Imagine how much easier it would be if you had the backing of some real money, say some giant corporations who might loose big time if FF use is curtailed or God forbid, replaced by renwables but, alas! No such source of help exists for you poor, wretched global warming deniers (or skeptics as I am sure you prefer to be called). /sarc

          Incidentally, while your winters are getting milder and milder, down here in the tropics, our summers, droughts and wildfires are getting wilder and wilder!

        • Jimmy says:

          re:my beef lies with taxpayer funded climate people!

          How about taxpayer funded Pentagon shaped cash machine for the warmongers? Does that appear on your radar anywhere? Seems to me your priorities are somewhat out of whack in both proportion to the sum of money involved and the sum of consequences for the nation.

  39. Old Farmer Mac says:

    Sometimes people with their hearts in the right place are just unable to bring themselves to even MENTION hard truths.

    Read this and weep.

    There is essentially a zero chance – and I do mean literally zero chance that the USA will EVER go to a fully organic system of agriculture so long as civilization as we know it, and our society as we know it, both survive.

  40. Ronald Walter says:

    For illustrative purposes only:

    Start counting, don’t stop. Keep counting, when you get to ninety million, you can stop. How long will it take to count to 90,000,000 if you can count one number per second?

    90,000,000 seconds had better be your answer.

    90,000,000/60=1,500,000 minutes.

    1,500,000 minutes divided by 24 hours equals 62,500 days.

    62,500/365=171.232876712 years to count to 90,000,000 at a rate of one number per second. Your grandchildren will have to begin where you stopped.

    Of course, if 90,000,000 people each say one number one through 90 million, it would take 90,000,000 people to count to 90,000,000 just one second, good thing there are plenty of people, makes the work go much faster, 90,000,000 times faster! har

    I digress.

    It takes one day to consume 90 million barrels of oil, or, in other words, oil is burned 62,500 times faster than you can count to 90 million, how many numbers you need to match the volume of oil consumed each day.

    Have to switch the units of measure to tons instead of barrels, it takes less time to count to 12,000,000.

    You would be able to count to 12 million within your lifetime.

    Alaska and Siberia along with northern Canada would not become a bog if the northern hemisphere would warm by 3 degrees Celsius, it would become a fen! ☺

    One movie I do recommend is The Snow Walker. It was released in 2003, and is based on a true story.

    And buttered popcorn, that’s why movies were invented, had to have something to do while eating popcorn. Have to recommend popcorn too.

    • Rune Likvern says:

      What happened to the part about 60 minutes in an hour? 😉

      • Ronald Walter says:

        Oh yeah, ich vergesse, so sorry. Have to redo the math. Everybody makes mistakes and it happens all of the time. Dang it anyhow. Two heads are better than one, even if one is a cabbage head. 😁

        90,000,000/60/60/24/365=2.85 years to count to 90,000,000.

        • Ronald Walter says:

          It will still take 1040.25 times longer to count to 90 million than it takes to burn that much oil in one day. A more realistic time frame.

          And 60 times 1040.25 is 62,415, so I was off by a factor of 60, that’s all.

    • Ralph says:

      The world burns one cubic mile of oil a year. It takes one second to count to one.

      I prefer salted popcorn myself.

      From the (East Anglian) fens, awaiting the return of malaria.


      And double checking my numbers, we burn 1.25 cubic miles of oil each year, if you include NGL, biofuels, CTL, GTL and refinery gain.

    • MarbleZeppelin says:

      Ronald W said “Alaska and Siberia along with northern Canada would not become a bog if the northern hemisphere would warm by 3 degrees Celsius, it would become a fen! ☺”

      Now let’s not get mired down in definitions. Ask Al K. Line about the difference between a bog and a fen. Just read a book about Wicken Fen, very grassy. Tundra areas will be more like boggy quagmires interspersed with ponds, lakes and in dry areas, sinkholes. Lots of sinkholes. Sinkholes on sinkholes.
      Maybe that is the collapse everybody is talking about. Should talk to Marsha Muskeg about that one.

      • Doug Leighton says:

        Most of Alaska, Siberia and northern Canada is already a (mosquito/fly infested) bog. Maybe when it gets warmer there will be a few more stunted spruce trees making life in these places even more wretched, if that’s possible.

        • MarbleZeppelin says:

          Permafrost collapse after shrub removal shifts tundra ecosystem to a methane source:
          Arctic tundra ecosystems are warming almost twice as fast as the global average1. Permafrost thaw and the resulting release of greenhouse gases from decomposing soil organic carbon have the potential to accelerate climate warming2, 3. In recent decades, Arctic tundra ecosystems have changed rapidly4, including expansion of woody vegetation5, 6, in response to changing climate conditions. How such vegetation changes contribute to stabilization or destabilization of the permafrost is unknown. Here we present six years of field observations in a shrub removal experiment at a Siberian tundra site. Removing the shrub part of the vegetation initiated thawing of ice-rich permafrost, resulting in collapse of the originally elevated shrub patches into waterlogged depressions within five years. This thaw pond development shifted the plots from a methane sink into a methane source. The results of our field experiment demonstrate the importance of the vegetation cover for protection of the massive carbon reservoirs stored in the permafrost and illustrate the strong vulnerability of these tundra ecosystems to perturbations. If permafrost thawing can more frequently trigger such local permafrost collapse, methane-emitting wet depressions could become more abundant in the lowland tundra landscape, at the cost of permafrost-stabilizing low shrub vegetation.

  41. Rune Likvern says:

    ”Banks’ sell-the-risk strategy underpins the shale oil boom. Lenders extended low interest credit to wildcatters desperate for cash, then—perhaps remembering the 1980s oil bust—wheeled the debt off their books by selling new stocks and bonds to investors, earning sizable fees along the way. “Everyone in the chain was making money in the short term,” says Louis Meyer, a special situations analyst at Oscar Gruss & Son. “And no one was thinking long term about what they’re going to do if prices fall.”

    • Heinrich Leopold says:


      Interesting link. What I find the most striking is the comment …..BofA Chief Executive Officer Brian Moynihan said in a conference call, “A lot of that risk is distributed out to investors.”… Banks are mostly out or have secured loans and small investors (unsecured lenders) are holding the bag. Interesting also the last production numbers from the FED. Natural gas production is down in September 4.6 % from last year (see last line in the table Natural gas NAICS code 2212). This is a big number and represents 3.5bcf/d lower production than last year. I am wondering where the FED gets this production number as this is not consistent with EIA production numbers.

  42. Watcher says:

    Yes, of course I walk around quoting bizarre $77 in Argentina because I pulled it out of the air.

    And who said anything about restricting imports as the mechanism for price definition. That’s your own bizarre scenario. Argentina reduced imports only because they produced more oil — because they decreed $77. $77 didn’t occur because they reduced imports. Vice versa.

    • Watcher says:

      hmm this belonged above.

    • Dennis Coyne says:

      Hi Watcher,

      You cannot decree the price to be $77/b unless imports are restricted. If Chile has imported oil at $50/b, why wouldn’t the Argentinians just drive to Chile and get a tanker of oil for $50/b and drive back to Argentina? Now perhaps people in Argentina prefer higher oil prices. Either tariffs are placed on oil imports (a tariff of $27/b) or Argentina limits imports to keep domestic oil prices high. The US could do the same, though I think the tariffs would break some trade rules, we restrict exports of crude, so I imagine we could restrict imports of crude and drive oil prices up. The domestic oil industry would probably like it, it would be tough to get re-elected in most places if you voted for such legislation.

  43. Rune Likvern says:

    For those taking an interest.
    One of the 15 companies I follow to some detail in Bakken(ND) is Oasis.
    Earlier the NDIC data showed a significant improvement in Oasis’ well productivity for the 2015 vintage….and increasingly this looks odd as data so far point to a collapse in the extraction and all of this cannot be due to statistical noise, ref also the chart below (actual data as per August 15).

    • That is a dramatic collapse. Is this real? Or is it an error in the data? How many wells are involved in this survey?

      • Runyan says:

        Perhaps they just did not choke their new wells?

      • Rune Likvern says:

        Ron (and others)
        The total number of Oasis operated wells are 622 all started as from Jan 2008 and per Aug 2015 and all in Middle Bakken and Three Forks formations.
        By vintage:
        2008: 14 wells
        2009: 10 wells
        2010: 35 wells
        2011: 80 wells
        2012: 128 wells
        2013: 129 wells
        2014: 174 wells
        2015: 52 wells (per Aug)
        Was this of any help?

      • FreddyW says:

        The last data point for 2015 must only have data from wells that started production in January. So I would not draw any conclusions from that.

        • Rune Likvern says:

          you are right. For Jan 15 NDIC reported start of production from 7 wells operated by Oasis and in the most recent months these Jan wells appear to have had some operational issues. So ignoring the last 2 months there still is a substantial decline.

          • FreddyW says:

            Yes that gives a better picture. But I would prefer if you only had data for for example the first three months and excluded the two last data points. Then there would have been no question marks.

        • You have the average production for 52 wells. A lot of conclusions can be drawn from that.

    • Amatoori says:

      Oh lord, that will go negative soon 🙂

      • Rune Likvern says:

        ..and when that happens (which will be a unique space time phenomenon) these wells will “suck in” the oil from other wells all over the Lower 48 and push the oil price upwards. 😉

    • MarbleZeppelin says:

      Looks like they were drilling some real duds this past year to almost stop producing at 8 months. How many wells are we talking about for 2015?

      • Rune Likvern says:

        All of the 2015 wells has decent monthly production numbers. A few may have had operational issues a month or so, but nothing out of a “normal” pattern.

        • MarbleZeppelin says:

          Then how do you explain the steep fade of oil production at 6 months. Guesses are good.

          • Rune Likvern says:

            The last two data points, for wells started in Jan and Feb 15 is to some degree influenced by what looks like operational issues. So looking at the data for the first 6 months and as of now the relative decline looks as the average.
            We still have to wait and see, but there is still the issue of understanding the sharp rise in the Gas Oil Ratio (GOR) for the 2015 vintage.

    • Rune Likvern says:

      Deleted and replaced.

    • Rune Likvern says:

      Oasis, development in LTO extraction from Bakken ND for all Oasis operated wells in Middle Bakken/Three Forks (chart below) started as from Jan 2008 and per Aug 2015.

      • Amatoori says:

        Is there any one of the other companies you follow showing any similarities as this skydive on Oasis 2015 Vintage?

        • Rune Likvern says:

          I have as of yet not updated all 15, but so far it is only Oasis I have found this with.

      • Old Farmer Mac says:

        Every one of these stacked long term tight oil production graphs I have ever seen looks just about like all the others but I am entirely unsure how many I have seen, or even if I have seen the same one several different times.

        Has anybody made a LIST of them, for different companies and areas, with links?

        How about some similar graphs for some conventional oil fields and deep water oil fields? All together in one spot?I am betting somebody has such list of links or maybe a lot of these graphs at one site.

        • Rune Likvern says:

          For Bakken we can look at all Bakken, by county, by pool, by company and by formation (within this a lot of combinations are possible) and we have also done so and published some of the results in the public domain.

          In the post/analysis linked below (it is 2 years old and likely due for a revision, but the message remains) I presented a relative comparison to some deepwater fields/discoveries with shale oil (Bakken) and the thing is that deepwater (depending on size of the discovery) recovers the oil faster than LTO.
          And there is something about speed of recovery and economics……

  44. The Baker Hughes Rig Count is out. US land rigs down 9, offshore up 1. Eagle Ford down 4, Permian down 2. US oil rigs down 10, gas rigs up 3.

     photo Baker Hughes_zps4y4ac3uq.gif

  45. MarbleZeppelin says:

    About how long does it take a rig to drill a horizontal well?

  46. Rune Likvern says:

    An update on Slawson in Bakken.

    Extraction developments for Slawson where the one company that had a considerable reduction in its LTO extraction as the oil price collapsed (ref chart below). According to NDIC data Slawson has not added any producing wells since Jun 15.

    It appears as Slawson has tried to adjust extraction with price movements, ref also the developments in 2008.
    This time it appears as the wells were “opened up” as the oil price moved up toward $60/b and per Aug 15 data it appears only a few wells at best are held back.

    Looking at data from other oil extraction areas it appears as a lower price incentivizes oil companies to increase extraction (production) to improve cash flows.
    As many oil companies now are more leveraged (taken on more debts) than in 2008 keeping cash flows as high as possible becomes paramount.

    • Ronald Walter says:

      Donald Slawson passed away in July of 2014. He contributed plenty to the development of the Bakken.

      A story on the work of Slawson Exploration in the Bakken printed in May of 2014 had this to say:

      “From its earliest days of drilling conventional Red River wells in Roosevelt County, Mont., in the early 1970s, to drilling its first horizontal Bakken well in 1989, its more recent exploration of the upper Bakken shale and the False Bakken, and its current middle Bakken and Three Forks development in the Stockyard Creek field in Williams County, N.D., Slawson has always been a leader when it comes pushing the limits of exploration.”

      “We aren’t right-minded” Slawson was quoted referring to drilling in the Upper Bakken.

      Also, it will take 2.85 years to count to 90 million, the 171 years is the amount of time needed to pay off shale debt. For shale debt yet to be paid, the minutes turn immediately into days, bypassing hours. 😁

      • Rune Likvern says:

        + 10 🙂

      • Caelan MacIntyre says:

        “For shale debt yet to be paid, the minutes turn immediately into days, bypassing hours.” ~ Ronald Walter

        Time-sublimation. ^u^

  47. B says:

    Oxy finally found a buyer for its vast Bakken acreage. Analysts are surprised at the low sales price.

    The buyer, Lime Rock Resources, already operates in the Bakken, but is a relatively new operator there overall, having just entered within the last year after acquiring nearly 50 wells in Mountrail County from MDU Resources (d/b/a Fidelity Exploration & Production Co.), another operator that has publicly stated a desire to get out of the Bakken altogether.

    There are some pictures of the “gleaming headquarters” at the link.

    Oxy to exit North Dakota’s oil fields in sale to private equity fund

    [Excerpt from article]
    Occidental Petroleum Corp, the fourth-largest U.S. oil producer, has agreed to sell all of its North Dakota shale oil acreage and assets to private equity fund Lime Rock Resources in a deal worth around $500 million, according to sources familiar with the matter.

    The sale, which marks the first exit of this downturn by a major oil company from the Bakken shale formation, includes all of Oxy’s roughly 300,000 acres in the state, including a 21,000 square-foot regional office built just three years ago.

    Lime Rock, which already operates in North Dakota, is buying the assets as the oil industry contends with the worst crude price crash in more than six years, a drop the fund used to its advantage.

    As recently as last fall, Wall Street had expected Oxy’s Bakken assets to sell for more than $3 billion.

    Lime Rock, which holds acreage in other U.S. shale plays, is already moving fast to cut costs by requiring all of Oxy’s North Dakota employees to re-apply for their jobs, according to one of the sources.

    Lime Rock and Oxy, both of which are based in Houston, declined to comment.

    The sale comes less than three years after Oxy spent $8.8 million on a gleaming blue and gray steel headquarters for operations in the state, which [Chief Executive Steve Chazen] bragged at the time helped boost the company’s oil production to an all-time high.

    Today, with oil prices at levels not seen in six years, the regional office in Dickinson near the state’s western edge holds far fewer employees than its size allows.

    An unstaffed lobby apportioned with eight lounge chairs and seven live house plants greets visitors.

    A sign directs all inquiries to a nearby phone to call one of 29 employees listed on a laminated directory.
    [End of Excerpt]

    • Rune Likvern says:

      B, thanks for sharing.
      This is interesting.

      FWIIW I ran the numbers on Oxy and the $500 Million (7% discount rate post tax) looks like a fair price for their wells and acreage.
      Below a chart showing developments in LTO extraction for Oxy in Bakken(ND) as from Jan 2008 and per Aug 2015.
      Oxy has not added producing well since Mar 15 and Oxy’s wells are amongst the poorest in Bakken, requiring an oil price well north of $100/b to turn a profit.

      This (inasmuch I have got it right) raises some interesting prospects.
      The new owner want their investment back with a decent return and as the acreage is poor this suggest they will not add many (if any) wells before the oil price moves into a level where these has the prospects of becoming profitable.

      • FreddyW says:

        I think it is interesting that they were able to stop the decline in production in older wells after Jan 15. Maybe they reduced choke so that the decline rates would look good before the sale. Do you have a similar graph showing GOR and water cut?

        • shallow sand says:

          Maybe some refrac’s account for this?

          • FreddyW says:

            I checked and the wells seems to have been online during the period. So likely no refrac. But I can confirm that GOR has increased alot starting around 10/2014.

            • AlexS says:

              Rune, FreddyW, thanks very much

              So, if all wells have been online, that means tremendous decline rates. How this could be explained?

              • Toolpush says:


                For what it is worth, my opinion, says the amazing productivity improvements the press has been crowing about, is the result of open the choke. This increases production of oil at the cost of a higher GOR.
                Once the gas is gone, and is below bubble point, artificial lift needs to be put in place, giving you a sugar high in the short term, followed by an increase in the decline rate. Most likely destroying the URR as well.

                Now how are they going to pay off these loans?

                Rockman explained a long time ago, when the going gets tough in the oilfield, good long term well management gets sacrificed for short term survival.

  48. Clueless says:

    I am going on a short vacation. (Okay, stop the cheering and clapping, I cannot hear myself think.) But, I think that about now is a rare opportunity. I think that Ron is right about peak oil NOW, [in my opinion, (and Ron’s)], is clearly in view. At these prices, shale oil is not economic; tar sand oil is not economic; deep water oil is not economic; arctic oil is not economic; and SLB says it is the deepest recession in the oil business in decades. To ramp up again to early 2014 levels will take several years. But, OPEC production is pretty much maxed out, as is everybody else at these prices. The economics majors are free to comment, but commodities can (and regularly do) triple or quadruple in a short period of time. This is because the marginal user will generally pay ANYTHING [no readily available substitution]. At what price do you want firetrucks NOT to fill up? How about ambulances? Police patrol cars? Food delivery trucks? Hospital back-up generators? Offshore drilling rigs that “rent” for $600,000/day? Airlines?
    Oil stocks started going down in mid-2013, and in the Fall of 2013 an executive from Transocean [RIG – the largest offshore driller (think BP blowout)] said that there was an “ill wind blowing.”
    Shallow Sand, I think that you might enjoy next year!!
    If I am wrong, please send a contribution to a suicide intervention charity.

    • MarbleZeppelin says:

      The run of the mill auto user can cut fuel use by 30 percent with no real impact on lifestyle (other than useless trips). With some more thought, effort and carpooling, down to 50 percent of original use.
      So the first part of the problem will be mostly just adjustment and complaining.
      If we don’t take that hint to move to more efficient vehicles, more electrics and other conservative/replacement methods, it won’t be pretty.
      So tighten the belt now, get used to it, I did years ago.

    • shallow sand says:

      Clueless. Lol. I’ve walked back from the cliff.

      Seriously, we actually were barely in the green 9/15 overall (OPEX, CAPEX, G & A). July and August were not, due to taxes, well fees and some CAPEX that had to be done.

      I’m taking a longer term view, although if WTI drops below $40 again I will likely get a little more agitated.

      Hope you are right! Have a good vacation!

  49. Old Farmer Mac says:

    With the closure of this nuke, Mass. is up against it . The nuke is old and about worn out, and the only clean base load and readily dispatch able power available is likely to be hydro from Quebec.

    The hydro will be there if they contract for it- but the transmission lines are NOT there – at least not yet.

    Now paint me a cynic, but even the greenest of of the green mostly D state level politicians will NOT allow the lights to go out.

    If the state does decide to go with gas, then more gas pipelines, not to mention gas generating plants, will probably have to be built. Given that power lines will come in from the less densely populated and less densely developed direction, my guess is that hydro will win out.

    The good people of Quebec will be glad for the jobs and the money.

    Coal is most definitely off the table in the rich state of Massachusetts, and will almost for sure REMAIN off the table where people are rich enough to do better.

    But how many of us actually believe that when the energy shit once starts hitting the fan hard and fast, coal will STAY off the table in places where the people can’t afford anything cleaner?

  50. hightrekker23 says:


    (Trouble posting)

  51. Watcher says:

    Still, the oil bust has left banks relatively unscathed. Asked why lenders weren’t seeing more losses from energy defaults, BofA Chief Executive Officer Brian Moynihan said in a conference call, “A lot of that risk is distributed out to investors.”

    • Greenbub says:

      Well, the banksters seem to have a good thing going. Wonder if they are selling the bonds to their own investment clients?

      • Watcher says:

        Of course! That’s the whole point.

        We have seen no shale default avalanche because they are doing what was done with MBS. When they, the bank, has risk looming, they deploy their sales people to sell the item aggressively to the unsuspecting.

        And again, you know who is complicit? Moodys, Fitch and S&P.

        Turn on any financial news during the day and you’ll be buried under oil drilling investment advertising. Packaged, securitized loans.

  52. Frugal says:

    Credit outlook worsens for some Canadian energy firms: Standard and Poor’s

    Financing or the lack of it is starting to bite in the Canadian oil patch.

    The credit rating agency said Friday it has taken “negative rating actions” on two big companies — Cenovus Energy (TSX:CVE) and Husky Energy (TSX:HSE) — along with four smaller ones.

  53. Caelan MacIntyre says:

    What’s really important is Brian and Ilsa:

    “What’s really important is that law-abiding middle-class citizens are deciding that playing by the rules is nothing but a sucker’s game.

    Just like the poker player who’s been fleeced by all the other players, and gets one mean attitude once he finally wakes up to the con? I’m betting that more and more of the solid American middle-class will begin saying what Brian and Ilsa said: Fuckit.

    Fuck the rules. Fuck playing the game the banksters want you to play. Fuck being the good citizen. Fuck filling out every form, fuck paying every tax. Fuck the government, fuck the banks who own them. Fuck the free-loaders, living rent-free while we pay. Fuck the legal process, a game which only works if you’ve got the money to pay for the parasite lawyers. Fuck being a chump. Fuck being a stooge. Fuck trying to do the right thing—what good does that get you? What good is coming your way?


    When the backbone of a country starts thinking that laws and rules are not worth following, it’s just a hop, skip and a jump to anarchy.

    TV has given us the illusion that anarchy is people rioting in the streets, smashing car windows and looting every store in sight. But there’s also the polite, quiet, far deadlier anarchy of the core citizenry—the upright citizenry—throwing in the towel and deciding it’s just not worth it anymore.

    If a big enough proportion of the populace—not even a majority, just a largish chunk—decides that it’s just not worth following the rules anymore, then that society’s days are numbered: Not even a police-state with an armed Marine at every corner with Shoot-to-Kill orders can stop such middle-class anarchy.

    Brian and Ilsa are such anarchists—grey-haired, well-dressed, golf-loving, well-to-do, exceedingly polite anarchists: But anarchists nevertheless. They are not important, or powerful, or influential: They are average—that’s why they’re so deadly: Their numbers are millions. And they are slowly, painfully coming to the conclusion that it’s just not worth it anymore.

    Once enough of these J. Crew Anarchists decide they no longer give a fuck, it’s over for America—because they are America.”

    In other words, politicians seem to furnish proof of the validity of Dunbar’s Number, 150, the maximum practical size for a human group.

    “Democracy is impossible in any group that is too large for people to know one another personally. Industrialism and large numbers go together, unfortunately, no matter how much it may be claimed that only a few adjustments are needed to set a large-scale political system back on the right track.

    Hence the interest in theories of anarchism…”

    A Crack In Time

  54. Heinrich Leopold says:

    The Bond Market and Fossil Fuel Production

    Over the last five years, the combination of high oil prices and record strong bond markets fueled a staggering rally of oil and gas production in the US. However, the recent slump of the high yield market brought production to a halt. Should yields spike further, there is a serious case for much lower production over the next few months. There is a high chance of a downward spiral of weaker bonds forcing companies to produce less weakening bond markets even further.

  55. Old Farmer Mac says:

    Try to forget WHERE this link originates, and just READ it, with an open mind.

    It is often said that war is merely the continuation of politics by so called other means.

    I find it amusing in the extreme that so many people are obsessed with AMERICAN power politics, for instance just about foaming at the mouth over our Sand Country adventures in pursuit of ACCESS to oil.
    (Note I said access, as witnessed by the fact we did not just SIEZE Iraq’s oil, etc. )

    These same people, apparently due to their hatred of all things Yankee, excepting their own generally very comfortable lives, are also prone to foaming at the mouth anytime any body mentions the POSSIBILITY other countries can and do play in the EMPIRE league.

    Now being a realist and a darwinist, as well as the self appointed token conservative in this forum, I have no problem admitting the USA is and has been militarily involved in Sand Country PRIMARILY because (as Willie the bank robber said of banks, that’s where the money is ) that’s where the oil is. I actually SAY so frequently.

    ( There IS a genuine commitment to helping local people out, but it is a minor consideration compared to the oil. We can’t be bothered or afford to help EVERY body out, so we help the ones who have stuff we want preferentially. )

    The thing is, Russia has national interests, and power enough, and talent enough, and leaders aggressive enough, to play in the big leagues too.

    Putin and company are not afraid to play for all the marbles.

    Russia has NOT given up on REMAINING a super power- and while the country is economically most emphatically not an economic super power, it has the potential to become one economically, and remains one militarily, at least near home territory.

    Putin is not afraid to play for all the marbles . MY opinion .

    I am not actually saying this is an accurate assessment of Russian intentions, but my old buddies who are retired military tell me the proper way to evaluate a potential enemies intentions is to forget what you THINK the enemy might do, and focus on what the enemy might be ABLE to do.

    Russia is certainly ABLE to pursue the goals outlined in this article.. Pursuit and success are different things of course.

    If Russia succeeds in making powerful friends with countries near to and hostile to Saudi Arabia, Russia could actually be in the catbird seat when it comes to the world oil market.

    Oil will still be the lifeblood of industrial civilization for a long time yet.

    • Fabio says:

      “We can’t be bothered or afford to help EVERY body out, so we help the ones who have stuff we want preferentially. ”

      Since you consider yourself part of the “we”, do “you” realize what you have done?

      Listen carefully:

      “my old buddies who are retired military”

      Sorry to hear that. Hope they haven’t been sent to Vietnam as well

      • Glenn Stehle says:

        I found the Putin speech difficult to understand. My hearing, after all, is not what it used to be.

        For others like myself, they might find it easier to read the transcript:

        It’s certainly worthwhile to take the time to listen to or read Putin’s speech.

      • Old Farmer Mac says:

        Hi Fabio,

        By “we” I mean the USA and our allies. We Yankees behave more or less, but mostly a little less , like every powerful country has always behaved. Being a realist, I see no need to apologize or reason to think any other country in our shoes, physically, materially, and morally would not have behaved as badly or worse.

        Any body who is willing to look the facts in the eye must agree that as bullies go, we are pretty soft hearted bullies and tend to do a lot more for our victims than we HAVE to do.

        Yes, a good many friends of mine went to Vietnam, some as volunteers, some as draftees. Some died, some are crippled up. I lucked out myself. Didn’t go.

        Two empires were at war, and Vietnam was a battle field.

        We won, not that battle , but we won the Cold War, more or less. The nukes may still fly someday.

        I do know a few Vietnamese who managed to move to this country and I do believe there are probably a few million MORE who would LIKE to, if they could.

        Poland for instance has always been unlucky in being a place where battles are fought by empires.

        Smaller countries have always been overrun when bigger ones fight. This is not apt to change.

        I can’t think of any place occupied in recent times by Yankee troops that has been as bad for locals as oh for instance Cambodia under Pol Pot.

        The Vietnamese people sure have done well in North Vietnam for themselves MANAGING THEIR OWN AFFAIRS without interference from meddlesome Yankees, haven’t they? I can’t say I have heard about any body WANTING to move to North Vietnam.

        Some of our allies are real assholes today and some have been real assholes in past times. But we never built a fence around a country, excepting for our own native people ( and those fences not in the last century ) and fenced them IN. We fence people out at worst.

        People who get all righteous about Yankee imperialism sure do seem to have an awesomely large blind spot for the imperialism of our current enemy Russia and our former enemy the old USSR.

        Now was the USSR /Cold War situation mismanaged? Well it sure could have been BETTER managed, in hindsight. But as pilots tend to put it, any landing you can walk away from is a good one, when you get right down to the nitty gritty.

        My own ethnic people have been enslaved and driven out of our home country as refugees. We no took Ireland and Scotland from people there before us . We have been slave owners and we have been mercenaries. My IMMEDIATE family apparently got here to these southern mountains a little too late to participate in killing or driving out the last local so called American Indians, but there is no doubt in my mind they would have participated so had they gotten here a little sooner.

        As one of the hookers put it in that great western novel Lonesome Dove, people ain’t nice.The world ain’t a nice place. SHE said “I ain’t nice”.

        Countries aren’t nice either, except when it is convenient.

        I DON’T know any Russians, but I bet if I did, I would think of them as nice people.

        But RUSSIA is NOT a nice country, when it comes to imperial ambitions.

        Neither is the USA.

        The KEY thing one needs to keep in mind about grand scale military thinking is that you FOCUS on everything that is POSSIBLE, rather than only what you think is likely.

        It is POSSIBLE Putin really is playing for all the oil marbles. If he can isolate Saudi Arabia geopolitically, Russia becomes the energy super power.

        • Fabio says:

          Being subject to decades of propaganda and misinformation (with some occasional intense sessions spread out along the way) can mold one’s beliefs to the point where an awakening to reality is virtually impossible, specially when one’s sense of self (the infamous “we”) is at stake.

          Anyway, I would like to highly reccomend the following podcast for anyone interested in USA government foreign policies and doctrines at the post USSR era.

    • Glenn Stehle says:


      It looks like those on both ends of the political spectrum are in agreement when it comes to our reasons for intervening in Syria and the broader middle east.

      It’s the oil, stupid!

      The wars over religion are a sideshow.

      It also looks like there’s agreement on how the alliances are shaping up, with the US, NATO, Turkey, Qatar and Saudi Arabia on one side and Russia, Syria, Iraq, Egypt, Israel and Iran on the other.

      There also seems to be agreement that Russia is takin’ names and kickin’ ass.

      Compare the article you linked, for instance, to this one by John Helmer:

      There is, nevertheless, still a great deal of disagreement on how we came to be in this disastrous situation, who is to blame, and what Russia’s intentions are.

  56. shallow sand says:

    Rune, thank you for the information you have provided.

    I think Q3 and Q4 numbers for WLL and OAS will be very telling regarding my definition of break even in the Bakken (flat production with cash flow neutrality). It appears by year end, production will have been relatively flat from 12/31/14 to 12/31/15 in the Bakken, maybe somewhat of a decline.

    Unfortunately, companies typically do not break down financials in each area of operation. However, we should be able to get an idea from others also, CLR in particular, also Triangle and HK.

  57. shallow sand says:

    Also, Rune, Enno and others who may be interested, I again urge you to review the non operated interests in Bakken and TFS wells located in Mountrail which are listed on energy net.

    Most of the wells are 2014-15. The rest are 2010-13. Some good illustrations of actual cost, including that CAPEX is ever present, even in the older wells and that the true costs, when non drilling and non completion CAPEX is included is in the $15-50 per BOE range.

    Further of interest is that liquids include not just oil, but plant products. The sale price for plant products is truly poor, $.15-.35 per gallon.

    • Rune Likvern says:

      Shallow, thanks…you are still hanging in there.
      Are plant products what EIA refers to as NGLP?
      With the quoted sales price these plant products can not cover fixed and variable costs (CAPEX + OPEX), $6.30 – $14.70/BOE. At those prices these (NGLPs) cuts into profits.

  58. For Noam Chomsky fans:
    Sam Harris slams liberals who “followed Noam Chomsky off the edge of the world”

    By most accounts, Harris wasn’t the resounding victor in the published email exchange with the esteemed linguist, but that didn’t stop him from slagging Chomsky and those who believe in the pernicious effect of American policy on the world at large.

    According to Harris, they are merely “liberals who followed Noam Chomsky off the edge of the world, and believe that everything that is happening in the Muslim world is the result of US foreign policy, [and that] there are no monsters in the world apart from ourselves and those we made.” While he is correct to criticize the solipsism inherent in many of Chomsky’s argument — the world will fall apart on its own just fine, after all — exonerating America of all responsibility for the current crises in the Middle East is just as fallacious a position. (Which, polemics aside, Harris no doubt knows.)

    His co-author Nawaz was equally adamant that the problem is Islam. “There are plenty of people on the politically correct side of this debate who are prepared to take the position that [Islam] isn’t a religion of war,” he explained. “The problem is, at the same time, what they’re not prepared to do is to recognize that, though it may not be a religion of war, it’s also not a religion of peace.”

    Nawaz — who served a 5-year prison sentence in Egypt for plotting against Hosni Mubarak while a self-professed Islamic extremist — said that link between Islam and violence has “something to do with Islamic connection between belief and action, ones interpretation of scripture to what one believes one must do.”

    • ChiefEngineer says:

      God didn’t create man, man created God from lack of knowledge. Religion is used by the wealthy and powerful to control the masses. The current Republican party would not exist without the uneducated blind followers.

      Religion is most effective when indoctrinated early in life or at weak moments. It’s why you see religion in early education, alcoholic programs and hospitals. Religion also uses socialization activities to keep it’s heard tightly in control.

      Great comment above Ron which bares repeating:

      “But if you are a good old boy or girl, among the bottom 99%, and believe these guys are on your side, then you are as dumb as fucking dirt.”

    • Glenn Stehle says:

      The evolutionary biologist David Sloan Wilson pointed out in this lecture to The Science Network that, in the highly reductionist world of Sam Harris and other New Atheists, the entire blame for everything that plagues humankind (including the seemingly endless conflict in the Middle East) can be laid at the feet of religion. (The slide below is from his presentation.)

      If life were only so simple as the two-world theory of the New Atheists would have us believe.

      Pretty much everyone, hailing from all points of the political spectrum, agrees that the conflict in the Middle East is being driven predominately, and has always been driven predominately, by politics, and especially geopolitics.

      Even though material and religious motives get so inextricably intertwined that sometimes it’s almost impossible to tell one from the other, the overwhelming concensus is that the conflict in the ME is being fueled almost entirely by material interests, and not religious or sectarian passions.

      As the popular saying goes: It’s the oil, stupid!

      • Pretty much everyone, hailing from all points of the political spectrum, agrees that the conflict in the Middle East is being driven predominately, and has always been driven predominately, by politics, and especially geopolitics.

        Just where did you find this survey of “pretty much everyone”? And just how far back does “has always been” go? If you have a link to that survey I would deary love to see it because I just don’t believe a dam word of it. You are just assuming that “just about everyone” agrees with you, and stating that as a fact, when in fact it is far more likely that far more people disagree with you, especially anyone that knows anything about the history of the Middle East. They have been at war for over twelve hundred years and will very likely be at war for at least that much longer. Twelve hundred years does not go back quite as far as your “always been” but that is far enough to get the gist of the almost constant violence that that has been going on in the Middle East.

        You are assuming that “politics” and “religion” are two distinct and different things. That is not the case even in Western societies an is definitely not the case in the Middle East. In the Middle East there is no politics without religion and no religion without politics. In the Middle East they are both basically one and the same thing.

        The Arab Spring started in Tunisia in December 2010. An Arab street vendor was slapped by a policewoman for not having a vendor’s license. He was so shamed by the act that he doused himself with gasoline and set himself on fire. Soon almost the whole of North Africa erupted in violence.

        Now if that was politics, it was entirely Middle Eastern politics and had nothing to do with the West. But those familiar with the Islam religion will tell you that it had far more to do with religion. In the mind of the true Islamist there is only Islam and nothing else. And in the Islamist world, women are not allowed to slap street vendors for not having a license.

        The Arab Spring, at least originally, had nothing to do with oil or geopolitics.

        If life were only so simple as those who blame politics for everything and blame religion for nothing would have us believe. They do this because they don’t understand that religion has its tentacles in everything, especially politics.

        • Glenn Stehle says:

          Ron Patterson said:

          Just where did you find this survey of “pretty much everyone”? And just how far back does “has always been” go? If you have a link to that survey I would deary love to see it because I just don’t believe a dam word of it.

          There’s this:

          Majorities in all four Muslim nations surveyed doubt the sincerity of the war on terrorism. Instead, most say it is an effort to control Mideast oil and to dominate the world.

          And this:

          Among the coalition of the “unwilling,” large majorities in Germany, France and Russia still believe their countries made the right decision in not taking part in the war….

          Americans have a far different view of the war’s impact — on the war on terrorism and the global standing of the U.S. — than do people in the other surveyed countries. Generally, Americans think the war…revealed America to be trustworthy and supportive of democracy around the world….

          Many people in France (57%) and Germany (49%) have come to agree with the widespread view in the Muslim countries surveyed that the America is exaggerating the terrorist threat….

          Publics in the surveyed countries other than the United States express considerable skepticism of America’s motives in its global struggle against terrorism. Solid majorities in France and Germany believe the U.S. is conducting the war on terrorism in order to control Mideast oil and dominate the world.

          And then there’s this:

          Five years after the invasion of Iraq, the leading reason British people now give for why we went to war is oil. A new ICM poll published today shows more people identifying oil as the real motive than any other reason, including the official grounds given variously by Blair, Bush and Colin Powell….

          The ICM survey asked people to identify “the real reason the UK went to war”, and offered four choices….

          Across all age ranges and across all social classes the number one answer came back the same: to gain control of Iraq’s oil.

          • Glenn quoted:

            Majorities in all four Muslim nations surveyed doubt the sincerity of the war on terrorism. Instead, most say it is an effort to control Mideast oil and to dominate the world.

            Glenn, do you believe the war on terrorism really has nothing to do with terrorism but is instead an attempt by the US to control Mideast oil and a desire by (the US President, or the US Congress, or the US Military, [please check which US agency it is that wishes to control Mideast oil and dominate the world] ).

            Do you think that the Arab Spring is all about an attempt by the US to control Mideastern oil? Remember it started in Tunisia and Tunisia has no oil. But I guess you may think it was all planned by the CIA or the NSA because they knew it would spread to other countries. Now that would be one hell of a conspiracy theory.

            I have no doubt that this is what most Mideast Arabs think but I would have though you had better sense.

            Question: What does “control Mideastern oil” mean? What would that entail? How could the US possibly control Mideastern oil? Somehow I just cannot picture how such a control would take place.

            First everyone said that we wanted to steal their oil. Then most everyone saw the fallacy in that scenario so now we are not out to steal their oil, just to control it. But just what the hell does that mean?

            • Glenn Stehle says:


              What I believe to be the predominate ultimate cause of the Arab Spring is succinctly stated by the Russian-American scientist Peter Turchin, who specializes in population biology and statistical analysis of the dynamics of historical societies, in War and Peace and War:

              Rampant inequality feeds into the perception of the extant social order as unjust and illegitimate, and creates excellent breeding conditions for the rise of revolutionary ideologies. In the early modern period, these ideologies took the religious form. Later, the dominant revolutionary ideologies were nationalistic and Marxist. Today, we are seeing the rise of religious-based revolutionary ideologies again, as the Wahhabism.

              Rampant, and growing, inequality certainly did exist in northern Africa — in Tunisia, Libya and Egypt. And it is highly unrealistic to say it “was entirely Middle Eastern politics and had nothing to do with the West.” Neoliberalism is very much a global political-economic system created and encouraged, if not imposed, by the United States and its NATO allies. And its consequences have been devastating for the world’s rank and file anywhere and everywhere it has been implemented.

              Here, for instance, is how Jack Shenker describes how neoliberalism impacted Egypt’s great unwashed:

              [A] newly-published report from the Egyptian government’s investment authority, GAFI, is one of the most significant and explosive pieces of writing to appear anywhere in the Middle East in recent years.

              It doesn’t mention the Muslim Brotherhood, or antisemitism, or artificial hymens, and so far it has garnered precisely zero coverage in the international press. What it does do is address an issue which day in, day out, shapes the lives of the vast majority of Egypt’s population and hundreds of millions of others beyond its borders….

              Since 1991, the year Egypt yoked itself to an IMF structural adjustment programme and embarked on a series of wide-ranging economic reforms, the country has been something of a poster child for neoliberal economists who point to its remarkable levels of annual GDP growth as proof that “Washington consensus” blueprints for the developing world can work. Coming on the back of an economic crisis precipitated partly by profligate government spending on arms sales (subsidised by US aid), the regime of President Hosni Mubarak signed up to an IMF loan that was conditional on economic liberalisation. Those conditions – relaxed price controls, reduced subsidies, an opening up of trade – were met with gleeful abandon.

              Ever since, the country has been subject to successive waves of neoliberal reform. In 1996 a huge privatisation drive kicked off – resulting in sham sales to public banks and regime cronies, a rapid deterioration of working conditions and a wave of strikes so powerful that one analyst labelled it the largest social movement seen in the Middle East in half a century.

              Then 2004 brought a new cabinet which swiftly cut the top rate of tax from 42% to 20%, leaving multimillionaires paying exactly the same proportion of their income into government coffers as those on an annual salary of less than £500. Special economic zones were created, foreign investment reached dizzying heights ($13bn in 2008) and, in the past three years, economic growth has clocked in at a consistently high 7%. The minimum wage, incidentally, has remained fixed at less than £4 a month throughout. The global business community applauded Mubarak’s rule as “bold”, “impressive” and “prudent”.

              So Egypt is now a glitzier, more prosperous land with pharaonic-style riches to match its pharaonic-style leader (now entering his 29th year in power). Except, as the GAFI report inconveniently points out, 90% of the country has yet to see any of the bounty… Egyptians have got steadily and dramatically poorer: when structural adjustment began 20% of the population were living on less than (inflation-adjusted) $2 a day; today, that figure stands at 44%. In the past decade, when GDP growth was at its strongest, absolute poverty has climbed from 16.7% to almost 20%. Chomsky called neoliberalism “capitalism with the gloves off”; it’s hard, looking at this jumble of statistics, to discern anything but a shameless hit-and-run job perpetrated by a tiny band of Egypt’s business elite.

              Of course this isn’t the first time that conservative economic theory has proved to have a catastrophic effect on the lives of ordinary people, especially in poorer countries, but this report – sponsored by the very government it criticises – is a particularly powerful example of just how dangerously flawed the idea is that making the rich richer can be a engine of society-wide economic progress.

              Timothy Mitchell argues that neoliberalism’s triumph is its double-thinking: it encourages the most exuberant dreams of private accumulation and yet aggressively narrows public discussion so that “the collective well-being of the nation is depicted only in terms of how it is adjusted in gross to the discipline of monetary and fiscal balance sheets”. Nowhere is that truer than in Egypt, a doublethink society where the ruling National Democratic Party can use its annual conference (held last weekend) to congratulate itself on wearing a western-tailored economic straitjacket while millions struggle to meet their basic daily needs.

              The conference was entitled “Just for you”. Whom that “you” was wasn’t specified, but it can’t have been any of the 90% shut out of Cairo’s miraculous economic boom. As the eminent Egyptian economics professor Galal Amin argues, “Those who continue to preach the trickle-down theory are likely to be the ones who do not really care whether anything trickles down at all.”


              • Goddammit Glenn, that has nothing to do with the US trying to control Middle Eastern oil. The word “oil” was not mentioned even once in your entire post. And “US” was mentioned only once but in no connection to control of anything.

                I find nothing to disagree with in this post. But you completely ignore my request as to the connection to US trying to control Middle East oil or any related bullshit.

                What is happening today in Israel or Palestine or whatever you choose to call it, has nothing to do with oil. What is happening in Syria has nothing to do with oil. Contrary to what you and I suspect a lot of people who post here believe, most of what is happening in the Middle East has not one fucking thing to do with oil. And when some guy like me asks you to make the connection, you change the subject just as you have done in the post above.

                • Glenn Stehle says:

                  Ron Patterson said:

                  What is happening in Syria has nothing to do with oil.

                  Oh but it does, as is explained here:

                  This “civil war” is not about religion

                  It’s the oil, gas and pipelines, stupid!

                  The proposed Iran-Iraq-Syria gas pipeline would be essential to diversifying Europe’s energy supplies away from Russia.

                  Turkey is Gazprom’s second-largest customer. The entire Turkish energy security structure relies on gas from Russia and Iran….

                  The Guardian reported in August 2013:

                  In 2009 – the same year former French foreign minister Dumas alleges the British began planning operations in Syria – Assad refused to sign a proposed agreement with Qatar that would run a pipeline from the latter’s North field, contiguous with Iran’s South Pars field, through Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Syria and on to Turkey, with a view to supply European markets – albeit crucially bypassing Russia. An Agence France-Presse report claimed Assad’s rationale was “to protect the interests of [his] Russian ally, which is Europe’s top supplier of natural gas”….

                  Knowing Syria was a critical piece in its energy strategy, Turkey attempted to persuade Syrian President Bashar Assad to reform this Iranian pipeline and to work with the proposed Qatar-Turkey pipeline, which would ultimately satisfy Turkey and the Gulf Arab nations’ quest for dominance over gas supplies. But after Assad refused Turkey’s proposal, Turkey and its allies became the major architects of Syria’s “civil war.”….

                  With the U.S., France, Britain, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Turkey — aka the new “Friends of Syria” colaition — publicly calling for the overthrow of Syrian President Bashar Assad between 2011 and 2012 after Assad’s refusal to sign onto the gas pipeline, the funds and arms flowing into Syria to feed the so-called “moderate” rebels were pushing Syria into a humanitarian crisis. Rebel groups were being organized left and right, many of which featured foreign fighters and many of which had allied with al-Qaida….

                  Since Syria is religiously diverse, the so-called “Friends of Syria” pushed sectarianism as their official “divide and conquer” strategy to oust Assad. Claiming that Alawites ruled over a majority Sunni nation, the call by the “moderate” U.S.-backed rebels became one about Sunni liberation.

                  Although the war is being sold to the public as a Sunni-Shiite conflict, so-called Sunni groups like ISIS, the Syrian al-Qaida affiliate Jabhat al-Nusra (the Nusra Front) and even the “moderate” Free Syrian Army have indiscriminately targeted Syria’s Sunnis, Shiites, Christians and Jews. At the same time, these same foreign nations supported and even armed the Bahraini government, which claims to be Sunni, in its violent crackdown on the majority Shiite pro-democracy demonstrations that swept the nation.

                  The Syrian government army itself is over 80 percent Sunni, which indicates that the true agenda has been politically — not religiously — motivated.

                  In addition to this, the Assad family is Alawite, an Islamic sect that the media has clumped in with Shiites, though most Shiites would agree that the two are unrelated. Further, the Assad family is described as secular and running a secular nation. Counting Alawites as Shiites was simply another way to push a sectarian framework for the conflict: It allowed for the premise that the Syria-Iran alliance was based on religion, when, in fact, it was an economic relationship.

                  This framework carefully crafted the Syrian conflict as a Sunni revolution to liberate itself from Shiite influence that Iran was supposedly spreading to Iraq, Syria and Lebanon.

                  But the truth is, Syria’s Sunni community is divided, and many defected to join groups like the Free Syrian Army, ISIS and al-Qaida. And as mentioned earlier, over 80 percent of Assad’s military is Sunni….

                  Most sectarian civil wars are purposely crafted to pit sides against one another to allow for a “divide and conquer” approach that breaks larger concentrations of power into smaller factions that have more difficulty linking up. It’s a colonial doctrine that the British Empire famously used, and what we see taking place in Syria is no different.

                  So, let’s get one thing straight: This is not about religion. It might be convenient to say that Arabs or Muslims kill each other, and it’s easy to frame these conflicts as sectarian to paint the region and its people as barbaric. But this Orientalist, overly simplistic view of conflict in the Middle East dehumanizes the victims of these wars to justify direct and indirect military action.

                  If the truth was presented to the public from the perspective that these wars are about economic interests, most people would not support any covert funding and arming of rebels or direct intervention. In fact, the majority of the public would protest against war. But when something is presented to the public as a matter of good versus evil, we are naturally inclined to side with the “good” and justify war to fight off the supposed “evil.”

                  The political rhetoric has been carefully crafted to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable. Ultimately, no matter the agendas, the alliances or instability brought on by foreign meddling, the calls for freedom, democracy and equality that erupted in 2011 were real then and they’re real today. And let’s not forget that the lack of freedom, democracy and equality have been brought on more by foreign meddling to prop up brutal dictators and arm terror groups than by self-determination.

                  The people in the Middle East once stood united and strong together against foreign meddling, exploitation and colonialism no matter their religious or cultural background. But today, the Middle East is being torn to shreds by manipulative plans to gain oil and gas access by pitting people against one another based on religion. The ensuing chaos provides ample cover to install a new regime that’s more amenable to opening up oil pipelines and ensuring favorable routes for the highest bidders.

                  And in this push for energy, it’s the people who suffer most. In Syria, they are fleeing en masse. They’re waking up, putting sneakers on their little boys and girls, and hopping on boats without life jackets, hoping just to make it to another shore. They’re risking their lives, knowing full well that they may never reach that other shore, because the hope of somewhere else is better than the reality at home.


                  • AlexS says:

                    Ron is right. What is happening in Syria has nothing to do with oil. It has to do with natural gas. And geopolitics.

                • Glenn Stehle says:


        • Glenn Stehle says:

          Ron Patterson said:

          ….it is far more likely that far more people disagree with you, especially anyone that knows anything about the history of the Middle East. They have been at war for over twelve hundred years and will very likely be at war for at least that much longer. Twelve hundred years does not go back quite as far as your “always been” but that is far enough to get the gist of the almost constant violence that that has been going on in the Middle East.

          And during that same 1200-year period that “they” have “been at war” and “almost constant violence has been going on,” we peace-loving Westerners have lived in a blissful state of non-violence?

          But of course that isn’t what the debate is about, is it? The debate is about whether all the war, violence and mayhem in the Middle is caused predominately by Islamic terrorists and their extreme religious passions, or whether it is caused predominately by the pursuit of material interests.

          Most people in the world, at least most people who live outside the United States (which, believe it or not, is most people in the world) believe that it is the US’s “effort to control Middleast oil and dominate the world” that has been the main driver behind all the violence and mayhem in the Middleast, and not the terrorism of Islamic religious extremists.

          • Hey, just reply to my post and hold the bullshit down please.

            Just how is ISIS and their beheading half the Iraqi Army an attempt by the US to control Middle East oil? Syria has a little oil but not much. Do you actually believe the conflict in Syria was all started by the US as an attempt to control Syria’s oil?

            No, you do not believe that. No one is that fucking dumb!

            • Don Wharton says:

              Ron, I’m sorry but I think he really is that dumb. I unfortunately paid some attention to what he had to say. He was supremely offensive and supremely dumb in defending an incredibly biased “report” by a fossil fuel front group. For a while I was thinking he had to be a fossil fuel shill. I don’t think he is. He goes off in a great many complex directions. He is just a sloppy and incoherent thinker in virtually all of those directions. I put some effort into accumulation data so I could nail him on some of his absurd claims. With further reading I think the best policy is to just drop in a short comment if other people get entangled in his various confusions. Life is short. It might not make any any sense to get mad about bad thinking when it is this predictable.

  59. Jeffrey J. Brown says:

    Re: US Crude and/or Condensate Exports

    As noted up the thread, it’s more than a little ironic that there are so many claims that oil exports from a net oil importer, the US, will have a material impact on global oil markets, even as US Crude + Condensate (C+C) production is declining.

    In any case, I just noticed something very interesting in the EIA Annual Energy Review data tables, which provide monthly and/or annual data back to 1950:

    Note that US total liquids net imports were up year over year, from 4.9 million bpd in August, 2014 (2014 annual average of 5.1) to 5.6 million bpd in August, 2015, a 14% year over year increase in net total liquids imports.

    • AlexS says:

      EIA’s Short-Term Energy Outlook gives slightly different picture (mb/d):

      • Jeffrey J. Brown says:

        So, the August, 2014 data match, but not the August, 2015 data. Given the production decline and given the year over year increase in liquids consumption, one would think that the Annual Energy Review data may be more accurate, but who knows.

        In any case, we have a discrepancy of 0.7 million bpd in net import numbers for August, 2015.

        • AlexS says:

          US C+C production (mb/d):
          Aug 2014: 8.83
          Aug 2015: 9.14
          Sep 2015: 9.01

          Total U.S. domestic liquids supply:
          Aug 2014: 14.40
          Aug 2015: 14.92
          Sep 2015: 14.74

          • Jeffrey J. Brown says:

            I was talking about the ongoing 2015 production decline in monthly production, as per your charts, combined with the year over year increase in liquids consumption.

            In any case, year over year US net imports are either flat or up (pick your EIA data base), and probably trending up going forward, subject to what happens to consumption numbers.

          • AlexS says:

            U.S. net crude and product imports (mb/d)
            Source: EIA Short-Term Energy Outlook, October 2015

            • Jeffrey J. Brown says:

              IMO, November, 2016 US net imports are far more likely to be 7 million bpd than 3.5 million bpd.

              For the very last and final time, we have two different EIA data bases, showing two different numbers. I can post the current Annual Energy Review data a thousand times, and you can post the STEO data a 1,001 times, but we would end up right back up at the same damn starting point, which doesn’t alter the fundamental fact that US oil production is currently declining and US liquids consumption is up year over year. What does that imply to you about the future trend for US net imports?

              In any case, take your pick of the EIA data bases, and do me a favor, get lost.

            • coffeeguyzz says:

              Alex, Mr. Brown

              Although the numbers are, at present, relatively small – and may never amount to much – there has been a launching of condensate exporting out of Perth Amboy, NJ, and, in the near future, liquid ethane out of Philafelphia.

              The condensate is on track to be 300,000 barrels a month, but the companies involved are embarking on ambitious expansion plans.

              The ethane is to be shipped on specially designed and built ships to supply cracker plants in Scotland. The dropoff in North Sea supply was to have caused a shutdown in the Grsngemouth facility, but now the expectations of Marcellus/Utica sourced ethane is prompting hopes that the plant will continue operations.

              The condensate is being sourced from the Utica in Ohio.

            • Enno says:

              As usual, many thanks for the numbers and charts, Alex.

              For some, data that conflicts with their views is very discomforting, while others appreciate it to enhance their own views.

            • Watcher says:

              I think you guys missed the operative word “net”.

              Petroleum product export (to Canada, Ven) is a significant player. Subtracts from the crude import. Condensate export? The numbers are poor.

              • AlexS says:

                We didn’t miss nothing. Both EIA sources calculate net imports as:
                Crude and condensate imports + petroleum product imports – Crude and condensate exports – petroleum product exports
                But their numbers are different. Will try to find out why.
                Most probably, there are differences in methodology.

          • Dennis Coyne says:

            Hi AlexS,

            The forecasts by the EIA are often wrong, if output declines and consumption continues to increase, then net imports will rise. If oil prices remain low (under $60/b) until Dec 2016, net imports may rise.

            A possible problem with the EIA statistics for imports and exports may be with refinery processing gain. In the EIA data if crude is imported and extra barrels are produced due to processing gain in US refineries, these barrels (from the refinery processing gain) are treated as US production whether or not the crude was imported. A further issue is that the EIA does not report consumption in barrels of oil equivalent. The data is very messy and difficult to make sense of.

            One possibility is to use the BP data and deduct biofuels from the consumption data and use the data in tonnes of oil equivalent for production and consumption to determine net imports.

            Jeffrey Brown expects the downward trend in US net imports will end soon, I tend to agree that this will occur between 2014 and 2018, impossible to know in advance when this will occur, oil prices will have a big influence.

            • AlexS says:


              There is no problems with the EIA statistics for imports and exports. As I have shown in this post

              the discrepancy between the Montlhy Energy Review (quoted by Jeffrey Brown) and the STEO numbers on US net imports is due to the fact that MER numbers are preliminary and (very rough) estimates, and STEO (released 2 weeks later) data is more reliable . The numbers for older months are the same in the two sources.

              As regards the EIA’s forecast, you are right, US net imports might increase next year, depending on the trends in production, consumption and changes in inventories.

    • Watcher says:

      CEOs need to have an excuse to provide investors (whose proxies might remove them from their jobs) and investors love to have excuses for why they are losing money. An excellent excuse is government interfering in commerce. So the oil export ban issue has legs.

      Since a billion+ barrels of oil has been ADDED to storage (that already existed in June 2014) in invisible tanks scattered around the world, one has to presume another billion or more could be stored in more invisible tanks in the upcoming year, and thus there need be no reason for optimism. Maybe we should research storage tank manufacturers to see who is getting the contracts to build these invisible tanks.

      OTOH, above is an article about how JPM underwrote Whiting’s refinancing so that Whiting could pay the loan they owed JPM (roll it over). With this kind of incest getting embedded, it’s only a matter of time before JPM and the other relevant banks sue someone (or hell, maybe kill someone) to force oil price up.

    • Doug Leighton says:

      So much for Weaning Off Fossil Fuels and Energy Independence. Maybe next year.

  60. Rune Likvern says:

    An update on EOG Resources in Bakken(ND).
    LTO extraction developments by vintage for EOG Resources from Jan 08 and per Aug 15, ref chart below.

    • Rune Likvern says:

      So far EOG operated wells in Bakken(ND) started in 2015 has been slightly poorer than those of 2014 and noticeably poorer than those of 2013, ref chart below.
      These are decent wells, but the low oil price hurts their profitability.

  61. Boomer II says:

    I sometimes don’t understand what some industry folks are thinking. What does this accomplish other than to make the public suspicious of oil transport?

    House bill could allow railroads to keep oil spill response plans secret | Bellingham Herald: WASHINGTON

    A House of Representatives bill unveiled Friday could make it more difficult for the public to know how prepared railroads are for responding to oil spills from trains, their worst-case scenarios and how much oil is being transported by rail through communities.

    • Old Farmer Mac says:

      You don’t have to be very smart to count trains and tank cars. Any body seriously interested in knowing how much oil passes thru his town can figure it out for himself. The sort of tank cars used to transport oil are seldom used to transport anything BUT oil of some sort or another.

      • Regex Wald says:

        The easiest way to tell what a tank car is carrying is to look at the mandatory hazmat placard. If the number on that is 1267, then the car is carrying crude oil, or was, when last loaded.

        But, really, if you see a unit train of nothing but tank cars, you can pretty safely assume the cars are carrying either crude oil or an ethanol/gasoline mixture. In the case of ethanol mixtures, the hazmat code will be 3475.

  62. Homo Fossilfuelis says:

    The Europeans bet wrong.

    The Japanese placed a much better bet.

    CNG, LNG, Fuel cells, ammonia, wood gas, powdered coal, compressed air, cow dung, condensed monkey milk, bah humbug to them ALL as far as being potential large-scale substitutes for electricity and electricity/gasoline and electricity/diesel for ground transportation.

    The technology waterfront has been covered–thoroughly surveyed over the past one hundred years.

    The future of ground transportation is electricity and electricity/gasoline and electricity/diesel power.

    The basic path ahead is crystal clear; the real big news from here on out will be innovations and continual development in refining the technology and achieving scale from mass production as acceptance becomes wider and wider.

    Unlike primary energy production and primary electricity production, where some people will continue to hold unrealistic hopes of some majik technology such as nuclear fusion or even more absurd ideas, the future path for ground transport power, as long as we have some kind of industrial-capable civilization, is set.

    Step changes in will come not from new power plants/drive trains but from the adoption of increasingly better technology refinements of all electric and hybrid power technologies, as well as continuing strides in automating vehicle guidance and control, smaller/lighter/slower vehicles in many venues, and the evolution away from ‘one-car-one-person’ to cars as a service, beckoned from the cloud…meaning a significant net reduction in the number of cars. Some of the ‘see the U.S.A. in your Chevrolet’ experiences will remain available for those who can afford the time off work and other direct expenses of medium-to-long distance car travels for leisure…both using the ownership/leasing as well as the rental constructs.

    The past couple of days my wife was in Hospital and I had the experience of watching..several times each day, people struggling to park their crew-cab, long-bed, towering, thousands of pound behemoth pick-up trucks in the hospital parking lot. I counted between 5-14 backups in various cases before the beast could be wedged into the spot, with the ass end hanging out into the drive lanes. For these folks, using the parking garage was a non-starter. I so wanted to ask these folks if they were employed in farming, ranching, or the construction trades or the landscaping biz, and if not, why the hell they were clogging up the streets and parking lots with these inappropriately large machines?

    I envision the future, when the low fuel prices party finally fades away, when these type of machines are used for appropriate purposes, not as urban cowboy commuter rigs for insecure people who have no idea on what else to spend their money on.

    Happy Motoring!

    • Jeju-islander says:

      Homo Fossilfuelis: That is an interesting article.

      “Another possible takeaway is that, if we really want to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the transportation sector, liquid fuels are looking like a dead end and electrification might be the best path forward. There’s no shortage of experts who believe that, and certainly that’s the lesson Volkswagen seems to be drawing from this fiasco. That said, it’s worth noting that Toyota, which was ahead of the pack in developing hybrid electrics in the late 1990s, actually doesn’t believe battery-electric cars are the future and is pouring R&D into hydrogen cars instead.”

      Which leads to an interesting quote from Toyota.
      “When asked why Toyota remained so cautious on electric vehicles, they said they take too long to recharge, despite battery innovations that have made them smaller, restricting them for short-range travel in cities.”

  63. Old Farmer Mac says:

    I predict hot times in a lot of places in Africa over the next few decades. Most African governments are none too stable and secure as it is, and as the oil depletes elsewhere , the remaining oil in places such as Kenya is going to be more and more important.

    Somebody is apt to be willing to guarantee the security of a pipeline to move that oil eventually.

  64. Doug Leighton says:


    “Eagle Ford and Bakken are the second and third largest oil producing shale formation regions in the United States, during the last three years. Together, Bakken and Eagle Ford in 2014 accounted for 54 percent of oil production and 19 percent of gas production among the top seven production regions.”

    Of course, Prudhoe Bay is fourth and, I think, Kuparuk Field (also Alaska) is seventh.

  65. islandboy says:

    Since, at the time of this post, this thread contains close to 500 posts (498) and I just posted something in the middle that I think contains an important disclosure about a post by a member here, I want to draw attention to my response to the post. I often cite sources which may be seen as having an obvious bias, for example the Fraunhofer ISE (Institute for Solar Energy Systems, Institut für Solare Energiesysteme in German). The fact that any bias would be obvious makes it a honest presentation of information even if biased.

    On the other hand, a regular poster here, in responding to something I posted, cited a source which, as it turns out is a shadow organization, created and funded by certain FF interests. The fact that this organization has been set up as an apparent attempt to distance the source from it’s funding, leads me to have a deep distrust of such organizations since, this a common tactic used by FF interests to spread anti-global warming and anti-renewable propaganda. This leads me to wonder if this individual is part of a well funded, organized campaign to spread anti-global warming and anti renewable messages on sites such as this one. To see who this individual is and what my fuss is about, here’s the URL of my post:

    Edit Fred, I think I may have unearthed at least one possibly, two members of Team Koch operating on this site, one the person I responded to in the linked post. The other one I think you can figure out.

    Nick, it is no use trying to debate with certain people on this blog. It would appear that their sole mission is to make sure that no pro renewable or pro global warming posts go unchallenged!

    To all, over my time on this blog I have tried to make my positions clear, in that, I live on an island and do not see imported FF as a sustainable energy option. Despite the challenges, I see renewable energy as the only long term hope for my island home and have never knowingly tried to mislead anybody here about renewable energy or my enthusiasm for it. I find thinly veiled attempts to mislead readers of this site, or any site for that matter, offensive.

    • Boomer II says:

      This leads me to wonder if this individual is part of a well funded, organized campaign to spread anti-global warming and anti renewable messages on sites such as this one.

      I quit reading his posts on this forum quite awhile ago. They are so long, so complicated, and often have so little to do with peak oil that I just skip over all of them now.

    • ChiefEngineer says:

      “I live on an island and do not see imported(recoverable) FF as a sustainable energy option”

      Brother, we all live on an island and unsustainable. It wouldn’t surprise me if Glenn is directly or indirectly seeing income from the Koch machine. I have believed Gail Tverberg has been on the take for a good 4 or 5 years now. Spreading her economic nonsense since shortly after the Democrats took the White House. The only thing the right offers to the country is to try to make the left fail and Jesus. As they ring the cash register.

    • Ronald Walter says:

      That is what I thought all along myself. Glenn is a spy! An outside agitator! A subversive with a fossil fuel agenda and out to kill all renewables! And he works for the Koch Brothers! Horror of all horrors! Another brainwashed messenger disseminating fossil fuel propaganda! Another tool to fool everybody all of the time!

      You might want to concentrate on matters of more importance rather than finding fault in others and then broadcasting what is perceived as an agenda driven presence, which is probably all the result of a wild imagination. Re-evaluate your priorities.

      Glenn has a knack for composing a sentence with good content.

      • HR says:

        Bravo Ronald

        This site is well on its way to becoming just another website filled with hate posts and that’s a shame. There are 10-15 guys posting good analysis and real time oil market updates which is invaluable and very enjoyable.
        Right now you just have to scroll thru half the posts made up of republicans are the root of all evil and global warming is going to kill you all tomorrow and you people are to stupid to understand and need to listen to what I’m saying or else blah blah blah. Look at the little link I found today and see how wrong you all are. Now some are being accused of being Koch brothers operatives and people are being screamed off the website. Fred Magyar is trying to kick Fernando off the site because his “thinking needs to be corrected” and SW is screaming at people because he doesn’t like what they have to say. From my standpoint, a majority of the global warming people are wanna be fascists.

        I’ve seen this happen at other websites. The leftists scream and scream until everyone leaves. You’ll be left with one or two leftists and they’ll still make comments and even ask questions. And of course there’s no one left to answer their questions and so they answer their own questions and then make another post.

        The way it’s going, that’ll be peak oil before long. And that’s a shame.

        • Doug Leighton says:

          “From my standpoint, a majority of the global warming people are wanna be fascists.” Wow, what a refreshingly balanced statement and yes I’d agree, Fred Magyar is one of those fifth column agitators, probably a pinko commie to boot. Ban that guy for sure.

          • Fred Magyar says:

            Fred Magyar is trying to kick Fernando off the site because his “thinking needs to be corrected”

            Yes! Beware my most awesome powers! Do not tempt fate by angering me! Bow before me, lest I place you in my sights and have you banned from this site forevermore!

          • Fred Magyar says:

            For the record, I’m only a pinko communist on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. That way there is no conflict and I can be a fascist on Tuesdays and Thursdays. I usually party (no pun intended) on Saturdays and I rest on Sundays.

            • Doug Leighton says:

              And, I suppose you’re recovering on Sunday owing to Saturday’s debauchery? Shame on you.

            • Ronald Walter says:

              It’s not Sunday anymore, it’s Funday. And let’s all pray it stays that way. 😁

          • HR says:

            It’s no sweat off my balls man. Ron seems like a nice guy and I’m just trying to give him a heads up. This type of back and forth keeps heading downhill until it gets very ugly. The last time I saw this at a website it ended in cross oceans lawsuits that lasted two years and cost the web owner a whole lot of anguish, time and money.

            But it’s not my problem. You guys have at it and I hope you get the results that you’re seeking and have yourselves a wonderful day.

            • HR, when you say “Ron” please distinguish which “Ron” you are talking about. How about saying “Ronald” to mean one Ronald Walter and just “Ron” when you are talking about me. Please! That will remove all confusion.


        • Boomer II says:

          There’s a reason why this forum tends not to represent the “Republican” viewpoint.

          It’s a forum about PEAK OIL. The Republican Party doesn’t talk about that much. I don’t hear Republican politicians say, “Here’s what we plan to do when oil becomes more scarce.”

          Now, I could do without political discussions here, too. That includes Fernando talking about Communist conspiracies. That includes people talking about science conspiracies.

          And so on.

          The reason the Kochs come up at all is that some of the drop-in commentators seem to be posting canned comments which appear to come from Koch-funded organizations. I could definitely do without any of that.

          As I have pointed out before, I don’t really pay much attention to the climate discussions because we have other reasons (e.g., economic, pollution, resource and land use destruction) to change our energy production, distribution, and consumption.

          I also try to point out, when we talk politics, that people here don’t factor in the libertarian Silicon Valley mentality when it comes to energy. The SiliconValley folks aren’t Communists by any means, but they have no interest in propping up fossil fuels and related industries. They see money to be made in new technology and don’t plan to be stopped in their pursuit of it.

          • Boomer II says:

            I’ll add that I think American politics goes where it is paid. It is so expensive to campaign these days that politicians need political donors and they are expected to promote what those donors want promoted.

            That means as economics shift, the profitable industries shift too and we get a different crop of millionaires and billionaires.

            The fossil fuel money will become less significant. Now there is more money in finance and Silicon Valley. The people in these industries have different priorities than the coal, oil, and gas folks. American politics will follow.

            It’s hard to see the current Republican Party gaining traction in the future because while they continue to keep their hardcore base stirred up with social concerns, they don’t advocate many economic policies geared toward the future. During the last presidential political campaign, there were some overtures to the libertarians in Silicon Valley, but that goes out the window with talk of restrictions on women’s rights, gay rights, and anti-immigrant campaigns.

            The climate issue is also ultimately a dead end for Republicans because weather and climate are going to do what they are going to do. Talk of conspiracies and unfunding research won’t change anything.

            • Boomer II says:

              More and more, the Republican Party talks about the past.

              But as the “past” dies off, the party becomes increasingly irrelevant.

          • Tristan Zuckerman says:

            Just remember that liberalism and leftist thinking is a known mental disorder. There’s a clear reason why your side keeps losing and losing and losing and losing….

            • Fred Magyar says:

              Just remember that liberalism and leftist thinking is a known mental disorder.

              Ah, but were it that simple, then we could just treat the one disorder…


              The moral roots of liberals and conservatives

              Psychologist Jonathan Haidt studies the five moral values that form the basis of our political choices, whether we’re left, right or center. In this eye-opening talk, he pinpoints the moral values that liberals and conservatives tend to honor most.

              Some people are able to step outside the Matrix. And those who can, tend to find this framing of liberalism vs conservatism to be rather unhelpful as far as understanding what is really happening in society and specifically with regards US culture.

              Describing things in plain black and white is just plain inadequate.

          • Jimmy says:

            re: There’s a reason why this forum tends not to represent the “Republican” viewpoint

            Ron’s PeakOilBarrel is also a rather intellectual blog. It seems to me that Republicans in general embrace anti science and anti intellectualism more so than the Democrats and undecideds. Republican’s are busy watching Honey boo boo, drag races and other such low end IQ entertainment activities. Of all the people I know (and I know a lot) I tend to observe that the stupider they are the more likely they are to make statements of support for the Republican party.


        • HR, I think Ronald Walter was just being sarcastic. Maybe you are too, though. ^u’

      • Jimmy says:

        Re: Ronald

        Troll Alert. why does he come to this website? It’s fairly clear that Ronald does not come here to contribute to a valuable discussion on the topics posted but wishes to instead sow discord by starting arguments or upsetting people, by posting inflammatory, extraneous, or off-topic messages with the deliberate intent of provoking readers into an emotional response and otherwise disrupting normal on-topic discussion for his own amusement.

        Probably votes Republican too.

    • Jeju-islander says:

      islandboy says: “… it is no use trying to debate with certain people on this blog. It would appear that their sole mission is to make sure that no pro renewable or pro global warming posts go unchallenged!”

      This site has a very diverse group of people writing on it. And a less diverse group of bots. Yes, every time there is a comment that is pro renewable or pro global warming we always get a stream of denialist propaganda from the bots and haters. Isn’t that to be expected? I am often amazed how dignified and calm the rational responses are to these repeated idiocies.

      But I think you are wrong to imply that this is the sole mission of the person you dislike. Glenn has a very abrasive style and has written on numerous topics. When he first arrived on this site about a year ago he made some very viscous attacks on Art Berman and Gail Tverberg for suggesting that the big drop in oil price was due to a drop in demand. He was correct, the peak oil community was fixated on either a) peak causes high prices because supply cannot match demand or b) high prices causes recession which leads to reduced demand. What everyone missed was the higher supply and stagnant demand leading to lower prices.
      In the year since I find that this site has become much less doomer oriented. I am not sure if I am correct but I think Glenn was a big factor in that change.

      • islandboy says:

        First let me say that I do not know Glenn apart from the posts that he makes at this site so I wouldn’t say I dislike him. I do not like the fact that he is trying to counter something I wrote by citing what has turned out to be a creation of vested interests, with no open disclosure of what those interests are. He appears to have read a vast amount of books and is very intelligent, far too intelligent to not have known what he was doing.

        As far as the less doomerish tone on this site goes, what about the input from people like wimbi, Boomer II, Old Farmer Mac, Nick G, ezrydermike, Longtimber, Fred Magyar, myself and others, highlighting developments on the demand side of Peak Oil. We have been engaging in discussions about energy efficiency, insulation, heat pumps, oil free transport, renewable energy and energy storage that, are pointing out positive developments that may have a chance of reducing world wide demand for FF energy in general and oil in particular.

        For several months now I have been posting data from the EIA’s Electric Power Monthly, when new data is posted by the EIA, attempting to show how solar energy may soon make a material impact on NG consumption in the US, assuming it is not already having a meaningful impact. Just on the most recent non oil and gas open thread, Political Economist and I had a lengthly discussion about renewables in China and in Germany, covering how renewables are impacting fossil fuel consumption and what levels of renewable penetration we thought might be possible. Nick G has been persistent to the point of annoyance with his messages about EVs being better and wimbi has been unfaltering with his “can do” attitude.

        I cant say that I agree that. Glenn was a big factor in the any change in the tone of this blog.

        • Jeju-islander says:

          islandboy: Thanks for the reply. I’ll backtrack on my claim that Glenn was a big factor in any change on this site. It is the event of oversupply that caused a rethink, not the person who drew attention to that event. But I think you should backtrack on the claim that Glenn has a ‘sole mission’. He is quite vocal on many topics.
          For instance if he is a member of Team Koch then is this their official political line. “It also looks like there’s agreement on how the alliances are shaping up, with the US, NATO, Turkey, Qatar and Saudi Arabia on one side and Russia, Syria, Iraq, Egypt, Israel and Iran on the other. ” I am unaware of any intelligent analysis from the Koch brothers. Have I missed something?

          Also I do not like viewing the world in binary terms. There are more possibilities than all or nothing. Your reply almost suggests that there is a battle between Team EV and Team Koch to get their message across. I agree that there has been an upsurge in interest recently in renewables and clean energy. That fact probably matches the rapid technical and infrastructural gains that alternative tech has made in the last few years. The delay in peak oil has allowed us to see a possible future and a way to avoid civilisational collapse.

        • Don Wharton says:

          Islandboy Please do not confuse vocabulary and/or eclectic reading with intelligence. They are not the same. Bad thinking is bad thinking even if the word usage and topic range might suggest that there should be some decent thinking there.

    • Songster says:

      When one of those persons talks about the insurance companies increasing attention to climate change as being a conspiracy to raise rates….that really says it all about that person.

      The other tries to ignore subsidies to the FF industry (and all of the other bad externalities) and then says “two wrongs don’t make a right” about the relatively small subsidies to renewables. Astonishingly biased logic.

  66. MarbleZeppelin says:

    US Economic Indicators. Railcar loadings and truck tonnage
    A friend of mine found this really thorough compilation of railcar loadings in graphical form. Both total and various commodity types including petroleum products. The big change in the rail industry is the large drop in coal loadings which is being compensated by other commodities, mostly by increases in intermodal.
    The drop in petroleum railcars lately is small relative to the increase since fracking started.

    Hope this explains what has been going on in the rail transport industry.

  67. Rune Likvern says:

    I have noted that shallow takes some interest in following developments for Whiting.

    Below a chart showing developments for Whiting operated wells in the Bakken (MB/TF, ND) as of Jan 2008 and per Aug 2015.

    So far for 2015 Whiting’s (average) wells very much are on the same (cumulative) trajectory as those of the 2014 vintage and as the average of all of Whiting’s operated wells.
    NDIC data show that Whiting has about 1,320 operated wells stated as of Jan 2008 and per Aug 2015.

    As per actual data as of Aug 2015 (starting Jan 2008) the following general observations have been made.
    1. Since the oil price collapse, starting the summer of 2014, it is hard to find the effects of the so called high grading of areas/wells.

    2. As of now there are sparse data on actual year over year decline from LTO wells as these ages.
    Data for the bigger operators in the Bakken (as of now) shows that late life (average) YoY declines is higher than modeled declines.
    (Given time this will be more thoroughly investigated and for some of the older wells (2008) data may be somewhat affected from revitalizing (refracking?) of wells.)

    • shallow sand says:

      Rune, thanks! It looks like 2015 production will be relatively flat. Given bulk of Whiting production is in Bakken, we should be able to get of sense of what “my breakeven” is for WLL (flat production/cash flow neutral.)

      • Toolpush says:


        Over all 2015 production looks flat, but if the last two months numbers are the beginning of a trend, then there may be a distinct fall of by the end of the year.
        We will have wait and see, but if the open choke theory is correct, then the decline may well increase.

        • shallow sand says:

          Toolpush. Yes, WLL is projecting company wide drop in the second half of 2015.

          Rune’s and Enno’s posts sure illustrate the need to keep adding wells to maintain production. This is why I think my definition of break even makes sense.

          The problem, of course, is break even doesn’t reduce debt principal. Falling production with no reduction in debt principal is a bad combo.

          • Longtimber says:

            ” one question many have asked is how have the major banks gotten through unscathed so far.”

            “This is especially true when one considers that the energy exposure of the big 3 TBTF banks is just over $150 billion. According to Bloomberg calculations Citigroup’s energy portfolio, including loans and unfunded commitments, swelled to $59.7 billion as of June 30, Bank of America’s to $47.3 billion, and JPMorgan’s to $43.6 billion, according to company filings.”


            • Boomer II says:

              If the investors are rich people using money they don’t need anyway, then I suppose the system is working well enough. The rich are bailing out the banks.

              If the investors are the middle class or funds that support the middle class, then it is likely to get messy.

              It’s so ironic that conservatives complain about bailing out the poor when it is the middle class and the wealthy that the government appears to be bailing out.

              And I wonder what would happen if somehow conservatives managed to eliminate the poor or at least not support them. Then would they keep moving up the ladder, eliminating the next level of citizen support until there is no one left to support other than the top .1%? Of course by that time the only money left in the system would either be fake or would be paid in by the wealthy because no one else would have any.

            • Caelan MacIntyre says:

              From the article:

              “In other words, JPMorgan was paid by its clients for the privilege of repaying JPM. Meanwhile the energy risk was offloaded to the dumbest men in the room, those who bought the stocks and bonds JPM had to sell…
              Actually, what JPM did is find a way to offload its risk to third parties.”

              JPM: “High five!”

              When you get a fractal/chaotic/butterfly-effect ‘seed’ that is the lack of ethics of the global ‘crony-capitalist-state legal systems’ (essentially, large-scale organized armed gangs and their slave/ideological captives) that integrate monopolies on violence and uphold coercive taxation and more land-grabbing by those simply with more money, then this ‘they-know-how-it-ends-and-it’s-not-pretty’ article just speaks about another example of the sort of poison snowflake on the tip of the contaminated iceberg of what we get.

              Insofar as any of the typical calls that we see to ‘bring anyone to justice’ naively/ignorantly misses the point of a ‘social technology’ system that is fundamentally unjust, so too do typical calls for transitional electromechanical (EV’s, PV’s, etc.) technology.

              I really don’t care about EV’s or PV’s or any other kind of ‘transitional technology’ because it’s not going to work if the aforementioned ‘social technology’ is not fixed first.

              “She ties the environmental crisis directly to capitalism-run-wild, and to the realization by the right wing that if we really address the looming environmental threat it will change everything about how we live.” ~ ChiefEngineer

              “No. She’s been fooled by right wing propaganda artists, who claimed that dealing with climate change would require socialism. It was a scare tactic…” ~ Nick G

              “you don’t know what Klein is talking about. You have completely misinterpreted her ‘connection’ to Heartland. Read her book.” ~ ezrydermike

              A focus on transitional electromechanical technology first before a focus on transitional social technology is putting the cart before the horse, and dog knows we as a species have a remarkable penchant for doing things ass-backwards or at least having things end up up-ended. That’s why we are here. And so it is that we continue on with the tradition, tough nuts to crack that we are.

              Onward and downward…

              • Caelan MacIntyre says:


                The rhetorical strategy which you employ is what is known as ‘lying by omission’. ” ~ Glenn Stehle

                “You can disagree without being insulting. Of course, trying to insult your debate partner will alienate the rest of the audience…” ~ Nick G

                This seems to assume that the audience is less informed about Nick G.

                Anyway, Nick G, speaking of which, and seeing as you seem to know better, how about we avoid insulting both Naomi Klein (‘fooled/scare tactic’?) and Mother Earth (your BAU green-tokenism/’ethics-lite’ promo)?

                • Old Farmer Mac says:

                  I strongly recommend that anybody who has not read it, read the Eric Hoffer book , True Believer.

                  True believers come in many flavors, religious, racial, political, doomer, technocopian, environmental, etc etc etc. Anybody who pays attention and knows a variety of people knows at least a handful of true believers and most likely LOTS of them. The biggest lot of all is probably the lot that believe in perpetual growth.

                  (There are belch fire v eight true believers and battery powered micro electric car true believers. I can flip my own personal cognitive dissonance switch and believe in EITHER belch fire v eights and Nissan Leafs at will, lol.)

                  Nick G is ok, he is just a technocopian true believer with either a bit of training in advertising and pr, which any business administration major gets as an undergrad, or maybe just an instinctive understanding of the importance of STAYING ON MESSAGE.

                  Every once in a while I toss a grenade at him, and he does admit that things can and might go wrong with his vision, so he is not quite RELIGIOUS about his technocopian beliefs.

                  And he MIGHT even turn out to be RIGHT, although I personally STRONGLY doubt it.

                  IF we had another fifty years of cheap oil and other one time gifts of nature , and fewer people, and the environment could STAND another fifty years of the current generation of BAU, he probably WOULD be right.

                  Technology CAN or COULD potentially provide solutions to the problems it has created- but not likely fast enough. Birth control and prosperity together would solve the population problem for instance.

                  The time frame is way the hell too short for technology to save humanity’s collective ass in my estimation at least, and in that of a lot of people a lot smarter than I am.

                  Glenn Stelle’s message is not so clear to me, but I AM reasonably sure he is not shilling for the Koch brothers. It is my privilege, as a naked ape, to believe that I know BETTER than anybody else, taken all around. We ALL believe that, when we get right down to the nitty gritty, lol.

                  So personally I think GS is wrong about some things, BUT since most of the authors he cites are unknown to me, I am not able to easily follow all his arguments. Some seem naive, some politically motivated perhaps, TO ME. Other folks mileage will vary.

                  Now as an aside and for what it is worth, all the conservative and republican bashing that goes on in this forum is goddamned guaranteed to guarantee nobody but liberals and democrats will ever read it, with the rare exception of somebody such as yours truly.

                  You cannot convince a man or woman of the truth of your arguments if you drive him or her away with insults before you even get to the stage of talking about the weather and mutual acquaintances.

                  And like it or lump it, there are as many or more of the R or SO CALLED conservative stripe out there as there are D or so called liberal stripe. The makeup of congress proves it.

                  • ChiefEngineer says:

                    Hello Caelan,

                    First off, I’m not an engineer and my screen name doesn’t make my dick hard or any longer.

                    Normally I don’t read your comments any more because I don’t have the time to decipher your writing style. But you quoted me above. So I went to work decoding your run on sentence.

                    I have a lot of respect for Nick G because he has enough vision and technical knowledge to see that humans don’t have to be doomed, but need to change BAU. Nick also has the discipline to keep his cool and stay on message against a lot of doomers on an oil blog. Nobody here knows exactly how the future is going to play out. So you might want to cut him a little slack on how he views how politics and energy play out together.

                    I don’t respect doomers like Tverberg who enjoy the fruits of our current situation and don’t have one idea on how to move forward. She would be the last person I would want to be in the trenches with in war.

                    MAC, the make up of congress doesn’t prove America is make up of conservatives. Most elections Democrats get more votes than Republicans but the Republicans have gerrymandered districts to CHEAT themselves into power.

    • Enno says:

      Great charts Rune, thanks.

      Your conclusions fit my observations as well.
      Nice to see from these charts that Whitening and EOG at least haven’ been choking wells this year, as there is are no obvious recent dips. The overal field decline for many Bakken companies is > 30% annually, while the DDA in the books is much less than that.

      • shallow sand says:

        Enno. I have noticed the Seeking Alpha authors are focusing more on Permian than Bakken or EFS. Am I imagining that?

        Will be very interesting to see Q3 on several companies given the terrible prices.

        • Enno says:


          I didn’t realize. It would have been nice though to have a similar well data availability and quality from Texas as we have for ND.

  68. AlexS says:

    RE: discussion on U.S. net imports of oil and petroleum products.
    Discrepancy between the EIA data from Monthly Energy Review (MER) and Short-Term Energy Outlook (STEO) is explained very simply.
    September 2015 MER numbers for the last 2 months (July and August) are preliminary (and very rough) estimates. All previous numbers from the two sources are the same.
    Similarly, as we have discussed in one of the previous threads, the latest MER numbers for US C+C production are preliminary estimates and tend to be seriously revised in the next STEO.

    Here is a table comparing statistics from MER and EIA statistical downloads (=STEO)

  69. Mr. Data says:

    Nice charts of U.S. Electricity generation by source.

    Wish they had maps/charts showing how electrify is exported across state lines.

    • MarbleZeppelin says:

      My local power company dropped it’s generation capability and became a power distributor. It joined up with a power generation company from the next state over, which supplies most of it’s power. I wonder if this was to get around the state mandate for renewables that the power companies must meet.

      • Don Wharton says:

        Power companies that become grid operators in general do not get away from an obligation to meet renewable energy mandates. Typically they will have to buy some energy from wind or solar providers.

  70. Ronald Walter says:

    A metric ton of oil is 37,200 yen over at Bloomberg today.

    Divide by 120, you have 310 USD per metric ton.

    Divide by 7.3 barrels per ton, the price of oil in Japan today is 42.47 USD.

    They must get a discount for large purchases.

    603, I think we’re at peak comments.

    Last winter in January a record temperature was set for the region. This October is among the warmest I’ve ever experienced, but not a record temp.

    Fall is the best time of the year.

  71. John S says:

    It looks like Art Berman’s views and analysis is finally getting acknowledged by the MSM. I am very happy for Art. He has taken a tremendous amount of abuse the last few years.

  72. Doug Leighton says:


    “A jump in global average temperatures of 1.5°C to 2°C will see the collapse of Antarctic ice shelves and lead to hundreds and even thousands of years of sea level rise, according to new research.”

    • MarbleZeppelin says:

      The rate of sea level change is too slow to capture the minds of the politicians and general populace.
      We have had up to a foot of sea level rise in the last fifty years and not much is being done because of that.
      Major storms, droughts and floods have not kicked a transistion into high gear.
      So it’s up to peak oil.
      Peak oil and economics will have a much more significant impact toward moving people and governments to transistion away from carbon burning. The side effect will be less global warming caused by people. Natural feedbacks are accelerating, so not sure how much the total effect of reduction will have on overall global warming.
      Of course, reductions in carbon burning will backfire somewhat as more light is allowed to reach the surface. But what is another watt/m2 in the long run? Bound to happen anyway.

      In the short run, oil and natural gas availability will play the major role in changing how we live. Except in those areas where lack of water occurs.

      • Boomer II says:

        Peak oil and economics will have a much more significant impact toward moving people and governments to transistion away from carbon burning.

        That’s why I don’t focus on climate discussions. It’s not perceived as an immediate problem.

        But look at what is happening with coal fired power plants. They are being phased out in favor of gas plants. Sure, regulations helped, but a bigger factor has been that gas is so cheap right now.

        The rebirth of nuclear hasn’t caught on, either. One reason is safety and disposal, but a bigger factor is cost.

        As solar and wind costs come down, people are going push for the cheaper option.

        Because people keep tossing out incompatibilities with the grid, I think you’ll see more distributed generation projects where companies and communities depend less on the grid whenever possible. In time either the grid will become more compatible with renewable energy or there will be more energy generation off-grid.

        And politics will change as money-making opportunities shift to non-fossil fuel-related industries.

        • Boomer II says:

          I notice that in this forum, we’ve got two Europeans who seem to be the primary opposition to renewable energy.

          I haven’t seen anyone based in California, Texas, and Colorado (to name several states pushing for more renewable energy) posting complaints here.

  73. shallow sand says:

    For those who contend KSA is just fine and dandy, take a look at today’s Bloomberg article which indicates the government has not paid bills for up to 6 months, apparently taking a cue from their shale brethren.

    • HR says:

      I somewhat follow all the chatter and charts about LTO profitability but I am mainly interested in the final analysis. I get bored with all the analysis, just not my thing but I applaud all the effort!
      Anyway, I mention the above because I am not sure what conclusions you guys have drawn, but I happen to have a report on my desk here that directly addresses the Bakken formation.
      The conclusion is that around a fourth of the wells in the Bakken are slightly profitable at the current price. This assumes a 20% IRR. The costs of the well, bopd, and other considerations go into the conclusion. Oasis looks the worst. Even continental is only somewhat profitable.
      The whole enchilada under the current circumstances is a bad deal. But their break even points are a lot lower than I would have figured. Wells that produce 800-900 barrels a day are the ticket but they are definitely a n the minority.
      Cheers / hope it helps

      • Watcher says:

        Why do you believe that report?

      • MarbleZeppelin says:

        To put what you said another way, the report shows that 75% of the wells are not profitable. Newer wells might be profitable for a time, older wells will not be. More highly fracked wells might be profitable for a short period since they should have a higher initial output.
        By profitable they mean they make money that month. No well in the Bakken should have long term profitability or be able to pay back it’s initial costs at these prices.
        There might be a few exceptions to that rule, some older wells that paid back the initial cost before the price dropped.

      • shallow sand says:

        HR. There are definitely wells that will be successful.

        I look at where we are at after 60 months. If we are still in the hole after 60 months, I think the well is not successful. That is my definition, so maybe I am looking at things the wrong way.

        A strong (above average) Middle Bakken well will produce 250K barrels of oil and 250K of gas in 60 months. Assuming non-down hole repair OPEX of $14K per month, $100K annually of down-hole repairs, 10% severance and extraction taxes, $2.00 per BOE of G & A, 100% gross working interest, 80% net revenue interest, $40 well head oil, $2.00 well head gas, $8,000,000.00 well cost, drilling, completion, artificial lift, tank battery etc., I come up with us being short $2,246,666.00 of payout after 60 months. This assumes no interest payments. If we borrow at 8% one half of well cost, we are now short $3,846,666.00 assuming no principal reduction.

        HR, this example is an above average Middle Bakken well. Sure, there are many examples of wells producing more than this. But not enough out of over 10K wells completed. TF wells on average produce less.

        Oil exploration is too risky IMO to be drilling and completing wells that will be economic failures on average.

        Q3 10Q will be interesting.

        • HR says:

          There’s a lot more in my report with the graphs and whistles and bells but the bottom line is that the current situation is a load of crap. Unless you’re a bankster and you have ulterior criminal motives.

          I’d put it up but what’s the point really. Plus its proprietary like a give a flip.

        • Enno Peters says:


          Nice summary.

          So far, 1378 Middle Bakken wells reached 60 months since first flow, and 25% of them (344) were above 250 kbo by then. The average over all these 1378 wells was 190.0 kbo.

          • AlexS says:


            thanks for the numbers.
            Based on your data, EIA’s estimate of average EUR for the Bakken wells of 203 kbo looks quite realistic.

          • shallow sand says:

            Enno. Thanks for all of the information you provide. Interesting that my “strong case” Middle Bakken well = 25% that have been producing for at least 60 months.

            There could very well be some improvement as time goes on, but I see no need to make complicated what is, in my view, a very simple calculation.

            There are clearly some wells in the Bakken of North Dakota that will do fine at $40 at the well, some even $20-$30 at the well. But, not that many.

            From what info I have read, and others have posted here, much of the EFS is worse. Apparently unconventional Permian is better than both, but I really think the jury is still out on how many wells there are really a good investment at these oil and natural gas prices.

    • Watcher says:

      ZH does a more comprehensive look.

      The Bloomberg article is sourced from 3 unidentified people.

      They close their cynical foray with :

      Via Morgan Stanley:

      Saudi Arabia are unlikely to support an OPEC cut in production, as the oil strategy appears to be working.

      Then there is that little bugaboo of . . . suppose they cut production and the price falls?

    • AlexS says:

      Saudi Arabia Seen Raising $32 Billion in 2016, Saudi Fransi Says

      Saudi Arabia will probably sell about 120 billion riyals ($32 billion) of debt in 2016 as the country seeks to prop up its finances after oil’s slump, according to Saudi Fransi Capital.
      Next year’s expected 10 billion riyals a month of sales will add to an estimated 135 billion riyals of debt issuance this year, analyst Aqib Mehboob wrote in a note to investors.
      Saudi Arabia is responding to the decline in crude, which accounts for about 80 percent of revenue, by tapping foreign reserves, cutting spending, delaying projects and selling bonds. Net foreign assets fell by about $82 billion at the end of August after reaching an all-time high last year. The country has raised about 75 billion riyals from debt issuance this year, according to the bank.
      Saudi Arabia’s public debt is among the world’s lowest, with a gross debt-to-GDP ratio of less than 2 percent in 2014. “Even with the government running a 20 percent of GDP deficit again, and only funding 25 percent of the deficit through bond issuance, the foreign reserves remain at very comfortable levels,” Mehboob said in the report.
      Falling for a seventh month in a row, net foreign assets held by the central bank dropped to $654.5 billion in August, the lowest since February 2013.

      • shallow sand says:

        And delaying payment for up to 180 days to contractors, like their shale brethren. Wonder what would happen if we didn’t pay our electric bill for 180 days?

        • AlexS says:

          shallow sand,

          The Saudis delay payments to contractors not because they are insolvent. KSA is too important a market for those contractors, so they have nothing to do but to accept the delays.
          Similarly, shale companies are too important clients for the banks and nobody is interested in bankrupting them.

          • shallow sand says:

            AlexS. I know KSA is not insolvent, but did they delay payments for 180 days when Brent was $100+? What does KSA have to fall back on if oil stays below $50 Brent for years?

            KSA did not see prices this low for this long when they made the decision not to cut Thanksgiving, 2014. Nor did they imagine the lengths shalers in the US would go to keep on drilling and completing uneconomic wells. I did not expect either, for that matter.

            I know KSA and most other exporting countries are far more economic than most US producers. However, I’d say none are enjoying what has occurred, despite claims to the contrary.

            I do not appreciate US shale BS re low oil prices, but I do not enjoy it from other parts of the world either. Schumberger’s CEO said this is the worst oil industry environment in decades. They do work worldwide, I understand, so I do not think the reference was solely to North American industry conditions.

            I am in the very small (less than 2%) minority in the US that wants higher oil prices. I am sure there are many more rank and file citizens in oil exporting countries that would like to see prices go up. KSA’s 2015 budget deficit equates to an over $3.5 trillion US budget deficit, which is a real eye opener.

            Continued inaction by OPEC hurts OPEC member states much more than it hurts the US IMO.

            I think there is a bigger chance for a production cut 12/4 than everyone else believes. I am not sticking my neck out too far, everyone believes there is zero chance.

      • Watcher says:

        Suppose they borrow $50 Billion at 3 or 4% and then say they aren’t going to repay it. Plenty of assets. Enough cash flow from oil. But they decide not to repay it. What could anyone do?

        One presumes they could not borrow more. One could be wrong about that, too. Suppose they borrow it from the central bank. Then not repay it. So what? Who could do anything about it? Who would want to?

      • Old Farmer Mac says:

        Renewables and electric cars are not going to save our collective butts from Peak Oil- at least not in the next ten to fifteen years. The geology of oil is pretty well understood.

        The Saudis probably believe they are on very safe ground borrowing money that they expect to repay with oil revenues.

        Most likely they believe they can leave the oil in the ground for now and get twice as much for it a few years down the road.If so, they would be fools not to borrow any money they need short term considering they can borrow it at a near zero interest rate.

  74. Toolpush says:

    Halliburton: “Drill Or Die” Mentality Could Lift US Rig Count In 1Q16
    Since August, our weekly drilling updates have warned of a sharp drilling decline coming in November and December as E&P budgets run dry. Today, Halliburton provided the same warning. CEO David Lesar said that most operators have exhausted their 2015 budgets and will take extended breaks starting as early as Thanksgiving. “Activity levels could drop substantially in the last five weeks of the year,” he said. “In my 22 years in this business, I’ve never seen a market where we’ve had less near-term visibility.”

    Based on this comment from Halliburton and our own view, we now believe it is possible that the US rig count, which stands at 751 today, could approach the 600 level by year-end. That would be a level not seen in the US since the late-1990s. We expect to see a slow trickle of rigs hitting the sidelines into mid-November and then larger drilling declines in late-November and December,

    “Drill or die”, or “Drill and die”, I am sure the difference in the two will be the oil price. Unless the oil price rises, the shales will eventually die, what ever financial shenanigans takes place.

    • Enno Peters says:

      Interesting article.

      • shallow sand says:

        The article and statements from Haliburton chief are very accurate, IMO, when those in charge are not personally liable for the debts and to stop drilling would mean to dismantle the companies, and dismantle their six and seven figure salaries.

        • Watcher says:



          It’s about salaries. Not profit.


          “Unless the oil price rises, the shales will eventually die, what ever financial shenanigans takes place.”

          Wrong. Shale won’t die. The companies might, but shale won’t. Capitalism might, but shale won’t.

          If you HAVE to have it, and you do indeed have to have it, then you’ll get it. You’ll nationalize the companies. You’ll force the labor at gunpoint. But you WILL get it.

          It is the one thing no one can see coming when they tell youngsters to major in Petroleum Engineering. They don’t tell them that to become GS-7 government employees, but that might very well be what is required.

        • ChiefEngineer says:

          Welcome to selfish American corporate capitalism. Not always the best use of resources, but nothing is perfect. Personally, I get the feeling current oil prices are political warfare against Russia and friends for aggression. Saudi policies otherwise don’t make much sense.

    • Greenbub says:

      A game of survival, with everyone involved being badly injured along the way.

  75. Old Farmer Mac says:

    For what it is worth-Miracles do happen, sort of, depending on how you define the term.

    It is apparently at least theoretically possible to build reasonably safe nukes that do not contribute to weapons proliferation.

    These people have REAL qualifications and REAL backing from somebody with CLOUT of the monetary kind.

    There is link to an article in the magazine in the text blurb accompanying this five minute video. I plan on reading it later, if it is not paywalled.

    I am not an engineer by training but I do know quite a bit about machinery, and if we have electricity enough, at affordable prices, given time we can pretty much electrify our entire transportation network excepting air and maybe ocean going shipping.

    What can’t be electrified can be run on rather small amounts of ordinary petroleum, synthetic oil from coal to liquid or even biofuels- or we can get by without it.

    I am not talking about something that can happen overnight but rather over a period of several decades, maybe a half a century or so.

    Air travel is useful but hardly ESSENTIAL technology and ships can be made to run on coal easily enough- if absolutely necessary.

    History is NOT over.

  76. AlexS says:

    According to Rigdata, despite a decline in rig count, the number of wells started (spud) in North Dakota increased from 118 in July to 140 in August and 153 in September

    North Dakota rig count, wells started and well starts per rig per month
    Source: Rigdata

    • AlexS says:

      Same data from 2012

    • According to the North Dakota Industrial Commission North Dakota had 112 spuds in July and 126 in August.

      • AlexS says:


        Rigdata is a reknowned and widely used source of statistics on oil and gas industry. But I have never used it previously and will not argue that their data is perfectly accurate.
        On the other hand, NDIC has a huge data base on North Dakota, but as Enno and Rune have shown, NDIC numbers on well completions are not accurate.
        So we can only guess whose numbers are better: NDIC or Rigdata

        • Enno Peters says:


          It will be interesting to learn which source turns out to be more reliable. But so far the raw data provided by NDIC has been rather good. The well completion numbers were interpreted by Helms himself (with some database queries), and were offered with a thorough disclaimer. He recently sent an email with an apology that he had made mistakes with those queries in the past.

    • Enno Peters says:

      Hi Alex,

      Something is wrong here. Two weeks ago I mentioned that it looked as if only 67 wells were spud in September, although I mentioned that there may be a small upward revision. Just a couple of hours ago, the NDIC released an update of all well statuses, to be found here:
      (the wells.dbf can be opened in Excel)

      It is very easy to see all the individual wells in there, and based on the update of today, it still looks as if only 67 wells were spud in September. It has 54 wells so far in Oct (until Oct 19), 121 in August, and 113 in July, very close to the numbers Ron also mentions here. October may still be revised upwards, but I expect that September will not change much anymore.

      The numbers you mention from Rigdata just look wildly off, especially given the rig count. I can’t explain the difference, but I think the data directly from the NDIC may be most reliable.

      In your graph, it shows > 300 wells spudded last December, while the NDIC only reports 154-167 wells spudded(depending on which wells you include) in that month.

      • Enno Peters says:

        So this is what I get:

        • AlexS says:


          Rigdata also has a separate set of quarterly data by key plays.
          The number of wells spudded in the Bakken in 4Q14 was 713. This is very close to (discontinued) Baker Hughes numbers (709)
          The 4Q14 quarterly number for North Dakota is 829, for Montana – 48
          Total: 877.
          Which implies 164 non-Bakken wells in the two states.

          For 3Q15:
          Bakken – 318 wells
          North Dakota – 411 wells
          Montana – 6 wells
          which implies 99 non-Bakken wells.

          • Enno Peters says:

            Thanks Alex,

            Still, the discrepancy looks too large to be only explained by non-Bakken wells. From the latest Director’s cut:
            “Over 98% of drilling now targets the Bakken and Three Forks formations.”

            If you have an account with Rigdata, it would be interesting to hear from them whether they can explain this difference.

          • AlexS says:


            I agree that the discrepancy looks very large. And, for some reasons, it is widening each December, when Rigdata numbers show a significant increase in well starts, unlike NDIC.

  77. AlexS says:

    Comparison of Bakken / North Dakota well statistics from various sources

  78. Nidia says:

    Corporate Taxes: All business structures pay taxes on the income made in that particular business.
    You need to seek Tax Filing Help if you would like stay away from Tax Levy
    complications like a Wage Levy or Bank Levy. Validation during – Data Import to ensure base data is correct resulting in generation of.

Comments are closed.