The Shale Daily Update – 4.23.2020

A new outbreak of COVID-19 could be taking place in Beijing. City officials have now shut down schools in their efforts to contain the outbreak.
Crude oil crisis caused by Coronavirus. Downward graph of crude oil value.; 3D; 3D Illustration

Here are 10 Things You Should Know About Oil and Gas Today.

The Big Story

As the Trump Administration sits on its hands while the U.S. shale industry burns to the ground, presumptive Democrat presidential nominee Joe Biden senses political opportunity. On Wednesday, Biden rescinded the promise he had made during the primary season to ban hydraulic fracturing, telling an interviewer based in Pennsylvania, “No, I would not shut down this industry. I know our Republican friends are trying to say I said that. I said I would not do any new leases on federal lands.”

Make no mistake about it, Biden did promise to shut down fracking in the U.S. during multiple nationally-televised debates. But, having now essentially secured the nomination, the former vice president obviously sees more to be gained by pandering to oil and gas producers in big electoral vote states like Pennsylvania, Ohio and Michigan than he does from pandering to anti-oil and gas activists who will likely vote for him in November regardless.

Isn’t politics a lovely business?

Biden Flip-Flops on Fracking, Now Says He Won’t Put 1.7 Million Workers Out of a JobExcerpt:

On Monday, presumptive Democratic nominee and former Vice President Joe Biden reversed the promises he made to green groups during the 2020 primary and pinky-swore he wouldn’t put 1.7 million workers out of a job by banning hydraulic fracturing for natural gas, better known as fracking. Jon Delano, the political editor at KDKA, the CBS News affiliate in Pittsburgh, Pa., interviewed Biden on Monday. He asked the former veep if he would shut down the industry that sustains roughly 200,000 jobs in Pennsylvania. “No, I would not shut down this industry. I know our Republican friends are trying to say I said that. I said I would not do any new leases on federal lands.”

On to other news:

Fracking to suffer largest monthly drop in history — reportExcerpt:

Fracking activity in the United States will likely fall by the largest monthly drop ever recorded as the novel coronavirus pandemic wreaks havoc on the oil industry, according to research published yesterday. Due to “ravaged global oil demand” and a supply surplus, the number of new fracking operations will drop 70% from March to April, from 550 to 162 across the Permian, Eagle Ford and Bakken basins, the data firm Rystad Energy said. Between February and March, Rystad had already observed a 30% decline in new frac operations across those same basins, the analysis said.

How the coronavirus has impacted the oil industry — and the future of the climate crisis – An interesting analysis here on how the oil bust will ultimately impact the economy.

Bankruptcy looms over U.S. energy industry, from oil fields to pipelines – Well, yeah, it sure does. Thanks for telling us something we already knew.

‘We Pulled the Plug’: As Oil Prices Plunge, Drillers in the Gulf of Mexico Shut Off Wells – Anyone thinking it’s only the shale business shutting down should read this piece. There is no shale production in the Gulf of Mexico.

Canadian energy sector shutting down production as low crude oil prices persist – The obligatory daily ‘Canada’s industry is shutting down, too’ piece.

New Mexico, Carlsbad leaders show economic worry as the oil market collapsesExcerpt:

The disruption in crude oil not only impacted the global market, already struggling from the effects of a seemingly concluded price war between Russia and Saudi Arabia but could prove devastating to local oilfield communities that rely on the industry for jobs and local revenue.

Situated on the western portion of the Permian Basin – believed to be the U.S.’ and possibly the world’s most active oilfield – Carlsbad was already bracing for the impact of the oil price collapse.

Mayor Dale Janway said the city’s budget and revenue from gross receipts taxes (GRTs) would “certainly” be affected as the city plans to reconfigure its finances in the wake of the market’s failure.

But more troubling, he said, was widespread job loss throughout the region as oil wells and drilling rigs were shuttered as demand fell for the products they produce.

20 Million Barrels Of Oil Stranded As California Runs Out Of Storage Space – Expect stories like this one from all across the country in the next few weeks.

Without fanfare, Houston unveils Climate Action Plan, shooting for carbon neutrality by 2050 – The Democrats who dominate the City of Houston’s government act on Rahm Emanuel’s old adage of “never let a good crisis go to waste,” sneaking this bit of enormously costly nonsense in while public attention is focused on the crisis itself. Despicable.

Drowning in crude, U.S. drillers say Trump strategic reserve plan is no lifeline – It certainly isn’t a cure-all, but it definitely would help.

North Dakota won’t declare production a waste yet, but will conduct public hearing on the impact — just in case – North Dakota’s Industrial Commission will follow the Texas Railroad Commission’s lead by conducting a hearing into limiting oil production, after which it will also do nothing.

That’s enough for today. Be careful out there.


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