BMEWS
 
When Sarah Palin booked a flight to Europe, the French immediately surrendered.

calendar   Wednesday - March 23, 2011

Libya: Whose Side Are We On???

Rebel Oil Company Added To Proscribed Sanctions List

The United States on Tuesday added 14 companies owned by Libya’s National Oil Corporation to its sanctions list, including the Benghazi-headquartered Arabian Gulf Oil Company which has broken away from NOC and allied itself with the rebels fighting the forces of Libyan leader Moammar Qadhafi.

Agoco has been added to the US sanctions list despite the United Nations having recognized the rebels’ National Transitional Council, which late last week established a separate oil authority led by Agoco to oversee activities in areas under rebel control.

Before the current crisis, Agoco’s area of operations accounted for roughly 40% of Libyan output of around 1.6 million b/d. Agoco also operates an oil refinery and oil terminal at Tobruk.

Agoco has been offering Sarir crude directly to European buyers, market sources said earlier this week, although they added that these offers had been declined because of the complicated situation in Libya.

Um, is this Much Ado About Nothing? I’ve heard that the US doesn’t import any oil from Libya, as it’s the wrong kind for our distillation facilities. And to add insult to injury, even when combined with their natural gas production, Libya only manages to pump out about 2 million barrels a day during the best of times, which is enough to fill about ONE supertanker. ONE. Right now their production is at least 60% less than that.

Counter data: the previous link says we DO import oil from Libya. About 44,000 barrels worth per day. Which equates to 8 tankers full per YEAR, or 19 hours worth. The US consumes 10 tankers full per DAY (20 million bbls).

According to EIA January through November [2010] estimates, the United States imported an average of 71,000bbl/d from Libya in 2010 (of which, 44,000 bbl/d was crude)

So, while this sanction is kind of a stupid thing to do, the net impact on our market is going to be ((Jack_Shit * Diddly_Squat) ÷ Galactic_Infinity). Think of it as nothing more than another clear indicator of US foreign policy. Hey, maybe the US is actually against BOTH SIDES in Libya!! That ought to make us even more popular!!!!


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 03/23/2011 at 04:39 PM   
Filed Under: • Oil, Alternative Energy, and Gas PricesUSA •  
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Gee, thanks for the penny

UK to cut motorist tax by 1 penny per liter

While jacking production tax SIXTY PERCENT

Wouldn’t want those evil oil companies to make more profit than they deserve while prices are high you know old bean.

The UK government Wednesday said it would increase taxation on oil and gas production to 32% from 20% from midnight Wednesday to raise an extra $2 billion while the oil price remains high.

In its 2011 budget, the government said it would only cut the rate if the oil price falls below around $75/barrel.

“When oil prices are high, as now, UK oil and gas production is more profitable so it is fair that companies should contribute more,” it said. “The supplementary charge on oil and gas production will therefore increase to 32% from midnight tonight.”

The government said that in future years, if the oil price falls below a set trigger price of around $75/b on a “sustained basis”, it would reduce the supplementary charge back toward 20% “on a staged and affordable basis” while prices remain low.

The government said it would use the $2 billion to ease the tax burden on motorists by cutting fuel duty and delaying future planned increases.

It also said it would cut fuel duty by 1 penny per liter from 1800 GMT Wednesday “in recognition of high current oil prices.”


So, raise your hand if you think this will lower prices at the BP pumps in London. Raise your hand high, so teacher can see you clearly and then come around and give you a smack with the cluebat.

This is socialism in action: the government decides to “tax the rich” and it’s the little folks who end up paying the price. Gee, thanks for cutting us a whole 1p break. 50p savings on a whole tank, while the tax hit raises the price £5.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 03/23/2011 at 04:30 PM   
Filed Under: • Oil, Alternative Energy, and Gas PricesUK •  
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calendar   Monday - March 07, 2011

Drill, baby, Drill

Drill Here? No.

Drill There? Yes!





Brazil opens Lula oil field, starts pumping oil, only 3 years after discovery.



image

The Cidade de Angra dos Reis



ON BOARD THE CIDADE DE ANGRA DOS REIS — Brazil’s quest to remake itself into a global oil superpower is gaining momentum on this giant ship anchored about 200 miles south of Rio de Janeiro in the deep waters of the Atlantic Ocean. Crews on this tanker-like vessel recently began extracting the first barrels of oil from a giant field known as Lula, more than three miles below, that has been called the biggest oil discovery in the Americas in three decades. Production is still at a trickle as the project ramps up. But lessons learned here will be critical in developing a vast network of nearby “pre-salt” reservoirs that are estimated to hold 50 billion to 100 billion barrels of oil — enough to turn Brazil into one of the world’s top five producers of crude.

“The challenges to develop this area are very big,” Humberto Americano Romanus, a senior engineer with Petrobras, Brazil’s state-owned oil company, acknowledged as he stood on the Cidade de Angra Dos Reis on a hot, clear February day in the Southern Hemisphere’s summer. The stakes may be even bigger. Expected oil wealth from the region could be a “passport to the future,” as Brazil’s new President Dilma Rousseff said, for what is already one of the fastest-growing emerging economies in the world.

But there remain many technical challenges to pulling barrels of oil out of fields buried beneath more than a mile of water and two miles of rock. High pressures and corrosive conditions can wreak havoc on equipment, while a thick layer of shifting salt poses the constant threat of well bores collapsing in on themselves.

In addition, Brazilian lawmakers last year passed new protectionist regulations for the pre-salt region that some experts fear will add costs and impede growth.The situation highlights how the soaring promise of investing in a fast-growing developing nation like Brazil often collides with the frustrating reality of operating there. Still, experts say, when it comes to oil and gas, Brazil may be too good an opportunity to pass up.

Announced in 2007, the Lula field - originally called Tupi - was Brazil’s first major pre-salt discovery and is estimated to have 6.5 billion recoverable barrels of oil. It will figure prominently in Petrobras’ plan to spend $224 billion between now and 2014 on projects that double its current output of 2 million barrels per day.

The Cidade de Angra dos Reis - a giant vessel called a floating production, storage and offloading unit, or FPSO - moved into position in October. Anchored by more than a dozen pilings plunged into the seabed, it is producing about 14,000 barrels of oil a day. But soon it will reach 100,000 barrels per day as more wells come online and a natural gas pipeline is connected in March.

The FPSO Cidade de Angra dos Reis MV22 is moored in 2,149m of water in the Tupi field, Santos Basin. [ Just off the coast of Rio de Janeiro ]

MODEC converted the VLCC “M/V Sunrise IV” into the FPSO. The FPSO is capable of processing up to 100,000 barrels of oil per day and 5 million m3 of gas. The facility is designed for H2S and CO2 removal and is capable of reinjecting CO2 downhole at 550 bar [ 8000psi ] in addition to exporting sales gas to shore. The FPSO will initially gather production from five subsea wells and has the ability to accommodate four additional production wells in the future.

Perhaps just as valuable as the oil coming from those wells will be the knowledge gained at Lula - whose name changed in December from Tupi to the Portuguese word for “squid,” and perhaps not coincidentally, is the name by which popular former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, a champion of offshore development, is known to Brazilians.

It was on this vessel last fall that Lula, wearing bright orange coveralls, a hard hat and safety glasses, held up his crude-stained hands for the cameras to mark the start of oil production at the field.

Petrobras CEO Jose Sergio Gabrielli de Azevedo said the idea at the Lula field is to proceed slowly, determine how the pre-salt reservoirs behave and then apply the best recovery methods.
“The only way to learn with new reserves is producing,” he told reporters in a recent group interview at Petrobras corporate headquarters in Rio de Janeiro. “That’s what we are doing.”


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 03/07/2011 at 07:00 PM   
Filed Under: • Oil, Alternative Energy, and Gas Prices •  
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calendar   Tuesday - February 15, 2011

Socialist Nations Cancel Green Initiatives

While Teh World Watches Egypt

Canada cuts funding to wind farms and solar initiatives

UK cuts funding to bio-fuel research

both nations cite lack of cost cost efficiency among reasons

Look - Protests In Iran, Yemen, Syria!

Middle East In Turmoil!!

snip snip snip snip



Times of international turmoil are great moments for domestic governments to make important announcements they don’t want to be noticed. Especially if the announcement involves a sudden reversal in policy that could seriously embarrass the government.

So Friday afternoon was an ideal time for Ontario’s Liberal government to take a big chunk of its alternative energy program and chuck it overboard. Attention was riveted on Egypt, where spectacular events were unfolding.  The perfect opportunity for Premier Dalton McGuinty to engineer yet another major reversal, while paying a minimal price among voters.

After years of touting wind projects as a critical piece of the alternative energy puzzle, the government let slip — very quietly — that offshore wind projects are no longer part of the game plan. Turns out there just isn’t enough scientific evidence that offshore wind projects do a lick of good, said Brad Duguid, the energy minister.

“It’s simply a case of recognizing we need to take a closer look at the science on freshwater offshore wind projects,” said Duguid. “Right now there’s only one in the world we’re aware of, in Sweden. There’s a number of issues that need to be looked at before anything could ever be considered for approval.”

A thousand mostly rural residents across Ontario who were awarded solar energy contracts last summer have been told their projects have been put on hold.

That has left many with tens of thousands of dollars invested in projects for which they now have no prospect of getting any income.

“I’ve got $70,000 sitting right out in my backyard,” said Brian Wilson, who lives near Belleville, of his 10-kilowatt solar array. “I can go two doors down and they’ve got $70,000 invested, too.”

But they’ve both been told that they can’t connect to the electrical grid because of technical issues.
...
The province told 20,000 applicants across Ontario last year they had been awarded contracts for solar energy under what they called their microFIT program.

About 3,700 have been connected to date.

But about 1,000 have now been told they can’t be connected in the foreseeable future, because local utilities don’t have the wires or other equipment to carry their power to the grid.

The would-be solar entrepreneurs already had one bitter battle with the provincial government last summer, when the province slashed the rate being paid for power from some types of installations.

Meanwhile, over in the UK:

Carbon Trust funding cut by 40%

Cuts to the government’s low-carbon agency will cancel grants to biofuel projects and cause dozens of redundancies

The government’s leading low-carbon agency has had its funding cut by 40%, causing the cancellation of grants to a major biofuel scheme and other projects, and dozens of redundancies.

The Carbon Trust, whose mission is “to accelerate the move to a low-carbon economy”, will receive £50m from the government in 2011-12. It will end free on-site energy surveys for businesses and 35 of its 216 employees will lose their jobs.

“Public funding still remains necessary and important to achieving our mission, especially in catalysing low-carbon innovation to overcome market failures and in supporting smaller businesses to cut carbon,” said Tom Delay, the Carbon Trust’s chief executive. But with public funding “constrained”, he said, the trust would look to the private sector for investment.
...
But Adam Harvey, a chemical engineer at Newcastle University, said: “The cut is very much against the claim of David Cameron and the government that they would regenerate the UK’s economy via green technology – it’s the exact opposite in fact.”

Harvey’s research group had received a grant from the Carbon Trust as part of an £8m effort to develop biofuels from algae, but the funding has been axed halfway through the project.

From The Daily Bayonet

Solar and wind subsidies are unsustainable and always were.  As as soon as voters woke up to the billions being wasted on greenwashing, [Canada’s] McGuinty changed tack, but he owns the green agenda and is the father of the Green Energy Act come October it may be his end.  Let’s hope so.

“Greenwashing”. What a great term. And now loads of Canadians and Britons are going to suffer, not just the wasted tax money, but because they believed their government’s Green Initiative BS, and invested loads of their own money, “knowing” that the government would continue to subsidize them. That’s all off now. Reality bites, even for the Socialists. None of this will slow Obama down a step, of course.

Angering rural voters, and battering your credibility with the environmental crowd, aren’t great ideas if you run a government that faces an election in eight months. So it’s no wonder that Ontario’s Liberals sought to hide the bad news by releasing it when (they hoped) no one was watching. But the excitement in Egypt won’t last forever, and eventually people will notice that Ontario’s government, once again, has been forced into a humiliating retreat at considerable trouble and cost to individual Ontarians.

Jiggle the lever! This one isn’t flushing down the Memory Hole fast enough!


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 02/15/2011 at 02:06 PM   
Filed Under: • Democrats-Liberals-Moonbat LeftistsEnvironmentOil, Alternative Energy, and Gas Prices •  
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calendar   Saturday - January 15, 2011

the russians are coming?

I’m not terribly well versed on these things BUT ...
according to the radio, BT owns large energy holdings in the USA.

So ....

With the Russians now having a stake in BP for a sizable amount of cash ....
Does that now mean the Russians also will have a hold of any sort in the US?

BP gives 5% stake to state-owned Russian oil firm as they reveal plans to drill Arctic

By Rupert Steiner and Simon Neville

BP signed a major deal last night that will see the Russian government own a chunk of Britain’s biggest oil firm.

It sold 5 per cent of its shares – worth £5billion – to Russia’s state-owned energy firm Rosneft.  Both companies have also agreed to co-operate in drilling for oil reserves in the Arctic.

The historic share-swap deal could open up lucrative revenue streams for BP, which is the third largest energy firm in the world.

But it also raises fresh concerns about the take-over of UK firms by foreign companies – including those, like Rosneft, that are effectively a branch of an overseas government.

Questions will also be asked about the security of Britain’s energy supplies, given Russia’s history of playing politics with oil and other resources.

the rest is here


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Posted by peiper   United Kingdom  on 01/15/2011 at 04:00 PM   
Filed Under: • Big BusinessFinance and InvestingOil, Alternative Energy, and Gas PricesUSA •  
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calendar   Tuesday - December 21, 2010

Not Slow, Not Fast

Half Fast Green Idea:

New Wind Farm For Texas

Nearly Half A Billion In Stimulus Money

Windmills Made In China



image

new wind farm will chop birds in Texas into stir-fry size pieces



Powerful Democrats help Chinese energy firm chase stimulus money
Sen. Reid and Obama donors back company seeking $450 million in U.S. money

Top Democratic fundraisers and lobbyists with links to the White House are behind a proposed wind farm in Texas that stands to get $450 million in stimulus money, even though a Chinese company would operate the farm and its turbines would be built in China.

Making the “green” go halfway ‘round the world to stimulate the economy. Um, whose economy? Not ours!

The farm’s backers also have close ties with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., who, at the height of his hard-fought re-election bid this fall, helped blunt congressional criticism over stimulus dollars possibly going to create jobs in China by endorsing a proposal by the Chinese company to build a factory in his home state. Although his campaign received thousands of dollars in donations from the wind farm’s backers and Reid stood on stage with them at a campaign event they hosted, his office declined to answer any questions about the wind farm’s organizers or their plans for Nevada.

The wind farm, first announced more than a year ago, would consist of 300 2-megawatt wind turbines, each perched atop a 26-story-tall steel tower and spinning three blades — each half the length of a football field. The farm would span three counties and 36,000 acres in West Texas land best known for its oil.  Dubbed the Spinning Star wind farm, the project’s 600-megawatt capacity is, theoretically, enough to power 180,000 American homes and would be the sixth-largest wind farm in the country.

It is being planned by an unusual joint partnership between the U.S. Renewable Energy Group, a Dallas investment firm with strong ties to Washington and the Democratic Party, and A-Power Energy Generation Systems, an upstart Chinese supplier of wind turbines. Filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission indicate the Chinese are bringing financing and the turbines.

So this stimulus cash layout, which is all Chinese money to begin with, gets spent in China to build stuff that comes here to be run by China and will send profits back to China, while we taxpayers pay interest to China on the money that was borrowed to fund the thing in the first place. Oh yeah, that’s building a stronger America alright. I wonder how many jobs Saved Or Created™ this will count as? [ hmm, funny, we don’t here that magical phrase anymore, do we? ]

On Sept. 15, 2009, just weeks before he announced his new renewable energy venture that would tap Obama’s stimulus plan for hundreds of millions of dollars, McGarr met with Pete Rouse, one of three “senior advisers” to the president. Rouse was named acting chief-of-staff in October 2010 after Rahm Emmanuel announced his departure. Rouse was formerly the chief-of-staff for former Democratic Senate leader Tom Daschle. McGarr is the chairman of Daschle’s political action committee.

This last paragraph is a bit out of context. Read the article an it becomes clear, that the people behind this project are all big-time DNC cash donators and bundlers. ( and it’s an MSNBC article to boot, so you know this part is downplayed ) They’re tied into the Chicago Machine and the DNC Elites like white on rice. So this is just another case of Osneaky taking care of his peeps. Half a billion here, half a billion there, it’s not like it’s our money or anything. Or that the taxpayers will ever have to pay this cash back. Oh, wait. Um, never mind!

Meanwhile the Democrats continue their utterly false class warfare demagoguery on the Evil Rich™, while passing out zillions to rich folks and lobbyists who are in line with their agendas. I’m sure if this group wanted to put in the wind farm without sending a cent overseas they would not stand an ice cube’s chance in Hell of getting as much as a dollar in stimulus cash. But their plan will bleed America, so that half billion is pretty much guaranteed. Probably with another billion waiting in the wings for the inevitable cost overruns.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 12/21/2010 at 09:04 AM   
Filed Under: • Democrats-Liberals-Moonbat LeftistsEnvironmentGovernmentObama, The OneOil, Alternative Energy, and Gas Prices •  
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calendar   Thursday - October 28, 2010

Oops

Old Alaskan Oil Reserve Estimate was

Order Of Magnitude Too High


which means that the estimate of recoverable reserves has been downgraded 90%




Drill here, drill now ... drill what?

Oil prospectors at a remote Alaskan energy reserve have had their hopes of striking liquid gold dashed - after scientists discovered the vast plot contains just one tenth of the precious commodity they first thought.

The National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska (NPRA), which covers an area about one third of the UK in size, was believed to contain billions of barrels of oil, prompting major energy investors to buy up stakes there.

In 2002, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) estimated the 23 million-acre reserve contained 10.6 billion barrels of oil.

The U.S. Geological Survey says a revised estimate for the amount of conventional, undiscovered oil in the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska is a fraction of a previous estimate.

The group estimates about 896 million barrels of such oil are in the reserve, about 90 percent less than a 2002 estimate of 10.6 billion barrels.

The new estimate is mainly due to the incorporation of new data from recent exploration drilling revealing gas occurrence rather than oil in much of the area, the geological survey said.

“These new findings underscore the challenge of predicting whether oil or gas will be found in frontier areas,” USGS Director Dr. Marcia McNutt said in a statement. “It is important to re-evaluate the petroleum potential of an area as new data becomes available.”

The organization also estimates 8 trillion cubic feet less gas than a 2002 estimate of 61 trillion cubic feet of undiscovered, conventional, non-associated gas—meaning gas found in discrete accumulations with little to no crude oil in the reservoir.

“Recent activity in the NPRA, including 3-D seismic surveys, federal lease sales administered by the Bureau of Land Management and drilling of more than 30 exploration wells in the area provides geological information that is more indicative of gas than oil,” the geological survey said.

The petroleum reserve in Alaska has been the focus of significant oil exploration during the past decade, stimulated by the mid-1990s discovery of the largest onshore oil discovery in the U.S. during the past 25 years, the organization said.




So gosh, what a coincidence. Suddenly we don’t have any oil up there, now that the guy who doesn’t want us to have use any oil is in charge. And you know what’s really sad? After two years of BS about “shovel ready jobs”, 10 years of being aware of the intense level of media bias out there, the utter erosion of any faith in science (thanks a lot you hockey sticks) and a steady stream of proven lies from both the government and the media ... after all of that, I don’t know if I believe them. How can we be sure this isn’t another case of accidentally missing a zero? We can’t. And it plays right into a certain socialist’s agenda. News, or lies? It’s not like I can run up there and put a dipstick in the ground. 


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 10/28/2010 at 06:06 PM   
Filed Under: • Oil, Alternative Energy, and Gas Prices •  
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calendar   Wednesday - October 13, 2010

A Bad Precedent

China stakes claim to Texas oil and gas wells




State-owned Chinese energy giant CNOOC is buying a multibillion-dollar stake in 600,000 acres of South Texas oil and gas fields, potentially testing the political waters for further expansion into U.S. energy reserves.

With the announcement Monday that it would pay up to $2.2 billion for a one-third stake in Chesapeake Energy assets, CNOOC lays claim to a share of properties that eventually could produce up to half a million barrels a day of oil equivalent.

It also might pick up some American know-how about tapping the hard-to-get deposits trapped in dense shale rock formations, analysts said.

As part of the deal, the largest purchase of an interest in U.S. energy assets by a Chinese company, CNOOC has agreed to pay about $1.1 billion for a chunk of Chesapeake’s assets in the Eagle Ford, a broad oil and gas formation that runs largely from southwest of San Antonio to the Mexican border.

CNOOC also will provide up to $1.1 billion more to cover drilling costs.

The deal represents China’s second try at making a big move into the U.S. oil and gas market, following a failed bid five years ago to buy California-based Unocal Corp.

Am I the only one who sees this as a bad idea? It is suicidal for a nation to sell control of it’s strategic assets. Any of them. Gold, oil, timber, rare earths, heavy metals. These must NOT be owned by foreigners. Sure, if you want to sell some of the products to foreigners, that’s one thing. And maybe it’s Ok for foreign investment to own up to 35% of the stock in companies like these. But not majority shareholders or outright ownership.

China has poured some $20 billion in loans and direct investments into Brazil’s offshore oil exploration and production, for example. And last spring, the Chinese government loaned $20 billion to Venezuela to develop oil fields in its Orinoco River basin, with much of the work awarded to Chinese companies.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 10/13/2010 at 02:37 PM   
Filed Under: • Oil, Alternative Energy, and Gas Prices •  
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calendar   Wednesday - August 04, 2010

Suckas

From Carol, an email that also made it as a blog post, but started out as a letter to the editor. Is it true? I don’t know. Maybe it is. Maybe it’s only true for certain definitions of “truth”. But I love the closing line.



BP dupes the President

It seems a miracle that our beloved leader was able to convince BP to establish a $20 billion slush (oops, escrow) fund to compensate those hurt by the ongoing oil plume in the Gulf of Mexico. After all, he had no constitutional power to force them to do so; so had to resort to Chicago-style negotiating.

But, let us take a closer look at the effect on BP’s finances:

1. BP will establish a $20 billion fund, but will pay only $7 billion into it during 2010.

2. BP is a British corporation, but has a very large operating entity in the U.S.

3. By generally accepted accounting principles, BP must book the entire $20 billion expense in the year accrued. Therefore, they will book a $20 billion expense in 2010, reducing their U.S. tax liability by $7 billion.

4. Our dear leader also convinced this massive corporation to show their concern for the “small people” by withholding dividends to their shareholders for the last three quarters of 2010. This reduces their outward cash flow by about $7.5 billion, including approximately 40 percent of that amount to U.S. citizens. Assuming the Bush tax cuts will survive through 2010, the U.S. Treasury will lose another $450 million in taxes on that amount. We won’t even discuss the effect on the U.S. economy.

Let us review the results:

BP Cash Flow:

Escrow funding ($7 billion)

Dividend saving $7.5 billion

Tax savings $7 billion

Net favorable cash flow : $7.5 billion

US Treasury Tax Receipts:

BP Corporate income tax ($7.5 billion)

BP Shareholders ($0.45 billion)

Net unfavorable tax receipts ($7.95 billion)

I guess we really should expect this. After all, our dear leader is the most inexperienced man in any room he walks into.



DICK MILLER
Savannah

So, after all this mess, BP comes out $7 billion ahead? Awesome. But that’s only for this year. Next year they’ll still have to drop that much or nearly twice that into the escrow fund. But, it may not be needed! Because the End Of The World oil spill, the Worst Disaster Evah Evah Evah Evah!!!! seems to be mostly cleaned up already. That 75% of the oil that was spilled seems to have dissipated, degraded, or been sucked up. Go figure. Who knew? Well, Rush Limbaugh for one. And anyone who saw how rapidly Saddam’s mess in the Gulf in ‘91 was cleaned up. Or that IxToc oil spill in the Gulf that Mexico did some years back ... but the environmentally conscious seem upset that their doom and gloom 50 years of problems forecast might not last 1 entire year.

But don’t worry, Opersonalcleansingwipe will take full credit for everything.

Battle to halt BP oil spill is nearing its end, says Barack Obama

BP claims it has reached ‘significant milestone’ in efforts to permanently seal Deepwater Horizon well

Barack Obama today declared the US’s largest and most politically embarrassing oil spill near an end as BP said it had reached a “significant milestone” in its efforts to permanently seal the Deepwater Horizon well.

“The long battle is finally close to coming to an end, and we are very pleased with that,” said the president, who was strongly criticised for what was initially seen as a slow and weak response as millions of barrels of oil poured into the Gulf of Mexico.

BP said it had completed a process known as static kill, in which heavy mud was pumped in to plug the stricken well, producing a “textbook” result.

Obama described the static kill operation, and a report by government scientists that about 75% of the nearly 5m barrels of spilled oil has been dealt with by the clean-up effort or nature, as “very welcome news”.

The White House tried to ensure the administration would gain credit for leading what it called a “robust” response to the disaster by saying that the clean-up would not have been as successful if it had not pushed BP “every step of the way”.

Right, because playing golf, going to rock concerts, putting half of Louisiana out of work, hiring thousands of layabouts to put sand in bags while only working a third of a day for full day’s pay at a higher hourly rate than they’ve ever seen, and taking multiple vacations is what we all call a “robust response”. Plus letting all the various government departments have a festival of stepping on their own dicks and generally slowing things down and making them worse. Dimwit.

Leftists Displeased, Surprised by Disappearing, Dispersing Gulf Oil

RUSH: The New York Times, the Washington Post, it’s everywhere.  “On the Surface, Gulf Oil Spill Is Vanishing Fast; Concerns Stay—The oil slick in the Gulf of Mexico appears to be dissolving far more rapidly than anyone expected --” No.  There were a lot of us that expected this to happen.  “-- a piece of good news that raises tricky new questions about how fast the government should scale back its response to the Deepwater Horizon disaster.” Come on, New York Times, scale back?  Does the federal government scale back in anything?  It’s response?  The moratorium goes on, jobs shut down, drilling shut down, 135,000 jobs kaput, $20 billion shaken down from British Petroleum. 

Speaking of that: “BP said Tuesday that it plans to cut its U.S. tax bill by $9.9 billion, or about half the amount pledged to aid victims of the disaster, by deducting costs related to the oil spill.  A portion of that could be refunded from taxes BP paid in earlier years.  The company disclosed its intentions as part of its second-quarter earnings report, in which it said it would record a $32.2 billion charge to reflect the costs of the spill.  Under U.S. corporate tax law, companies can take credits on up to 35 percent of their losses.  The credit for BP could mean, however, that taxpayers will indirectly foot part of the bill for the $20 billion” shakedown that BP was forced to pay by Obama “to compensate people and businesses harmed by the disaster.” It doesn’t read that way in the Washington Post.  I used my own words to make the story accurate, calling it a shakedown.  Gonna cut their tax bill by $10 billion.  This is said to be the taxpayer indirectly footing the bill.

That seems to at least partially support the above numbers.

And this is the Washington Post: “Oil from the BP blowout is degrading rapidly in the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico and becoming increasingly difficult to find on the water surface, the head of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said Tuesday.  ‘The light crude oil is biodegrading quickly,’ NOAA director Jane Lubchenco said during the response team daily briefing. ‘Significant oil has been dispersed and broken down by bacteria.’

“A significantly more optimistic assessment of the environmental effects of the oil well blowout came Tuesday from Edward Owens, who worked with Exxon for four years on the Valdez spill in Alaska and who has been hired as a consultant to BP. Owens was quoted as saying the fragile Louisiana marshes would be close to pre-blowout condition within months and that the environmental impact on the gulf as a whole would be ‘quite small.’” Whoa.  Something’s going to have to happen to this guy.  Doesn’t he realize the permanent destruction of the Gulf is now settled science?

Read the rest if you want, it’s a Rush. And it only got better today.

from the NY Times article discussed by Rush:

The immense patches of surface oil that covered thousands of square miles of the gulf after the April 20 oil rig explosion are largely gone, though sightings of tar balls and emulsified oil continue here and there.

Reporters flying over the area Sunday spotted only a few patches of sheen and an occasional streak of thicker oil, and radar images taken since then suggest that these few remaining patches are quickly breaking down in the warm surface waters of the gulf.

Hmmm, no wonder the government wouldn’t let anybody fly over this. That kind of news goes completely against the approved story. And Cap & Trade had to move forward. Let no crisis go to waste ... even if you have to manufacture one? Or at least digitally enhance it?


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 08/04/2010 at 07:27 PM   
Filed Under: • EnvironmentOil, Alternative Energy, and Gas Prices •  
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calendar   Saturday - July 24, 2010

Billion Dollar Safety Investment

Oil Companies Pledge $1B For New Spill Containment System



Scared shitless that Obama is about to nationalize them, the Big 4 companies put oil spill R&D into high gear. Ok, that’s my opinion, but it’s pretty obvious, right?


Four U.S. oil giants announced a spill-containment system to be used to deal with deepwater blowouts in the Gulf of Mexico.

Chevron, ConocoPhillips, ExxonMobil and Shell have committed $1 billion to fund the initial costs of the system, which they say would be able to deploy within 24 hours and operate in waters almost 2 miles deep under harsh weather conditions, with an initial capacity to contain 100,000 barrels of spilled oil a day.

“As an industry, we must rebuild trust with the American people in order to demonstrate that we can produce energy in a safe and environmentally responsible manner,” Marvin Odum, president of Shell Oil Co., said in a statement Wednesday.
...
“If we all do our jobs properly, this system will never be used,” said Rex Tillerson, chairman and chief executive officer of ExxonMobil. “The extensive experience of industry shows that when the focus remains on safe operations and risk management, tragic incidents like the one we are witnessing in the Gulf of Mexico today should not occur,” he said.

The companies said they would form a non-profit organization, the Marine Well Containment Co., to operate and maintain the system.

While BP is not part of the initiative, the four companies said members of the oil industry would be invited to participate.

“The oil and gas industry has long been recognized as a technological leader, and the American public expects us to improve our ability to respond immediately to offshore incidents,” said Jim Mulva, ConocoPhillips chairman and chief executive officer. “The creation and development of this sophisticated system will greatly enhance industry’s ability to ensure a quick and effective response.”

The new system will be designed to be flexible, adaptable and able to begin mobilization within 24 hours and can be used on a wide range of well designs and equipment, oil and natural gas flow rates and weather conditions.  The new system will be engineered to be used in deepwater depths up to 10,000 feet and have initial capacity to contain 100,000 barrels per day with potential for expansion.
...
“As an industry, we must rebuild trust with the American people in order to demonstrate that we can produce energy in a safe and environmentally responsible manner,” said Marvin Odum, president, Shell Oil Company.  “Beyond Shell’s absolute commitment to oil spill prevention and robust well designs, additional safeguards must be strengthened across the industry to develop the capacity to quickly respond and resolve a deepwater well blowout in the Gulf of Mexico, regardless of how unlikely it is that this situation will reoccur.”

Work on this new containment system is being accelerated to enhance deepwater safety and environmental protection in the Gulf of Mexico, which accounts for 30 percent of U.S. oil and gas production and supports more than 170,000 American jobs.

The companies are also actively involved in significant industry efforts to improve prevention, well intervention and spill response.  This includes rig inspections and implementation of new requirements on blowout preventer certification and well design.  The industry has proactively formed several multi-disciplinary task forces to further develop improved prevention, containment and recovery plans.

The companies have reviewed the system with key officials in the federal Administration and Congress and will conduct briefings with other key stakeholders.

Well, this is nice. And I hope it all sits around and turns into rust without every being used. But like a gun in your pocket, it’s better to have it and never need it, than it is to need it and not have it. And the BP mess is a case of the latter, from an industry that took a 2 generation nap because they could. Now the dogs are barking, so they’ve got to do something. I’m sure they will: “this isn’t rocket science, it’s just plumbing”. But plumbing at the end of a really, really long wrench. High powered deep sea robots and subs? We’ll see what they come up with. And then we’ll see them test and train. And we’ll pay the price, but it’s still cheaper than government takeover.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 07/24/2010 at 05:01 PM   
Filed Under: • Oil, Alternative Energy, and Gas Prices •  
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calendar   Monday - July 12, 2010

Capped at last?

Breaking - Fox News has been reporting for the past hour that BP has their latest cap on the broken oil pipe, and that it appears to have contained the leak. BP has not yet released a statement. The latest cap has not yet been pressure tested as a stop valve; right now it is merely letting the oil flow to a takeup pipe. But nothing seems to be leaking, and that’s the important story.


image



BP Lowers New Cap on Busted Well in Latest Attempt to Stop Gushing Oil

NEW ORLEANS—A new cap has been installed on the leaking well in the Gulf of Mexico, offering hope of containing the gusher for the first time since BP’s deepwater rig exploded in April.

BP officials said Monday evening the cap was mounted on the well after two days of preparing the site and a day of slowly lowering it into place.

The company plans to run tests starting Tuesday to see if the cap can withstand pressure.

The old cap, removed Saturday, did not have a tight fit and allowed crude to escape.

The new cap will enable BP to capture all the oil and funnel it up to ships.

BP is drilling two relief wells so it can pump mud and cement into the leaking well for a permanent fix.



Not mentioned here, but heard earlier this afternoon, is that BP says the relief well that they are drilling is less than 50 feet away from intersecting the broken well pipe, a good distance underneath the sea floor. Plans are to inject several hundred feet of concrete down the old bore hole from the new line, sealing the broken well permanently.

Personally, I don’t understand why they don’t just pump the well dry ASAP, and then fill it with seawater or whatever they do with wells once they go dry.




Oh, and in “celebration” perhaps of this, Oblamblam and his thugs issued another drilling moratorium today, reworded they hope so that it passes court muster. They will do whatever is necessary to bring this country to it’s knees. Thanks for jack shit, 52ers.

Obama Administration Issues New Moratorium on Offshore Oil Drilling

The Obama administration issued a new moratorium Monday on deep-water offshore drilling that is no longer based on water depth and stresses new evidence of safety problems, hoping the revised ban will pass muster with the courts after the initial one was rejected.

“More than 80 days into the BP oil spill, a pause on deep-water drilling is essential and appropriate to protect communities, coasts, and wildlife from the risks that deep-water drilling currently pose,” Interior Secretary Ken Salazar said in announcing the new moratorium. “I am basing my decision on evidence that grows every day of the industry’s inability in the deep-water to contain a catastrophic blowout, respond to an oil spill, and to operate safely.”

The new moratorium was panned by industry groups and supported by environmentalists. [ yeah, well nooooo shit ]

Last week, a federal appeals court rejected the government’s effort to restore its initial offshore deep-water drilling moratorium, which was issued after the catastrophic Gulf oil spill in April. The moratorium was blocked first last month by U.S. District Judge Martin Feldman.

This looks like another loser from Team Loser. Especially if this industry, has now shown that it does have the ability to contain a catastrophic blowout like this one. Fargin bastige.

UPDATE: CNN has a statement from BP, and video of the new cap going on.

New Orleans, Louisiana (CNN)—BP says it has placed a new containment cap on its crippled well in the Gulf of Mexico that’s been gushing oil since an explosion and fire April 20.

The company hopes the new cap will be able to completely contain the leaking oil, but tests are still needed to determine its effectiveness.

Video supplied by BP showed robotic arms gingerly lowering the new 18-foot, 150,000-pound cap over the well, with little oil appearing to escape.

If the new cap does not completely contain oil from the crippled well, some may have to be brought to the surface to waiting containment ships. But under a worst-case scenario, there could be new damage to blowout preventer.

The “well integrity” tests are due to begin Tuesday morning, CNN’s Ed Lavandera reported on “The Situation Room.” The process could take anywhere from six hours to two days.

BP said in a statement Monday night that, “It is expected, although cannot be assured, that no oil will be released to the ocean for the duration of the test. This will not however be an indication that flow from the well bore has been permanently stopped.”

As efforts continued Monday to get the new cap in place, Allen and BP executives emphasized that work was also continuing on two relief wells, which he called “the final solution” to shutting down the leaking well.

The first relief well is now five feet away from the main well and, at 17,840 feet deep, it’s 30 feet above the hoped-for final casing point, BP’s Suttles said Monday. That’s where BP will run additional tests, then aim for the final intersection point. Given the closeness to the target, he said that BP was estimating “kill” operations to shut down the main well could take place at the end of the month.

real-time video is here, and a zillion other places as well.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 07/12/2010 at 08:00 PM   
Filed Under: • Oil, Alternative Energy, and Gas Prices •  
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calendar   Friday - July 09, 2010

Your Daily Two Minute Obama

Barack Obama: The great jobs killer

As former President Ronald Reagan might have said, “Obama, there you go again.”

The current occupant of the White House claims to know how to create jobs. He claims jobs have been created. But so far the score is Great Obama Depression 2.2 million lost jobs, Obama 0—a blowout.

Obama is as hopeless, helpless, clueless and bankrupt of good ideas as the manager of the Chicago Cubs in late September. This “community organizer” knows as much about private-sector jobs as Pamela Anderson knows about nuclear physics.

Oh I dunno; I’d give Pam a break. Who knows more about the dangers of two critical masses colliding? But give the rest of it a read just in case you’ve forgotten for one whole day about the BS, the union favoritism, the political payoffs, and how much the real economy is tanking.

Hey, speaking of tanking, how about that oil spill in the Gulf? Day 81. And the latest I hear is that the government continues to test that A Whale ship ... which could have sucked up and processed 168 million gallons of corrupted water by now had it been put to work when it arrived a week ago. Next thing we’ll hear is that the Coast Guard grounded them for insufficient life jackets. Or too much salt in the crew’s oatmeal. Or some other bureau-wienie nonsense.



Oh, and by the way, have you heard that the vast majority of cleanup workers along the beaches of the Gulf are either American blacks or illegal aliens? How about that one? With Americans suffering from near 10% unemployment, they have to hire foreigners? And guess who is doing that hiring? The government of course! Or was it BP? Or were these jobs only funded by BP? And then they (gov) have the moxie, the gall, to let the Labor Secretary, Congresswoman Hilda Solis, publicly complain about their working conditions, and that they don’t have ENOUGH interpreters!

She said workers cleaning up BP’s oil spill on the beaches of the Gulf of Mexico include minorities who often don’t have the interpretation services they need to understand how to handle contaminants.

Solis said the workers, some of whom she visited recently, are a “vulnerable population” that needs to be protected and that her office is directing BP to give them proper training in their spoken languages.

“What I heard overwhelmingly was that there were no interpreters that could provide them with information on how they could go about understanding what safety measures that OSHA (the Occupational Safety and Health Administration) is requiring them to take so they could be certified to be part of the cleanup,” Solis said.

She said the workers are often minorities, including African-Americans, Asians, Mexicans and Central Americans who work in 109-degree weather while wearing plastic coveralls.

I have heard elsewhere that these beach cleaners are paid $25 per hour, and because of the heat and OSHA rules they only work 1 hour in 3 but get paid for all of them. So it takes 3 of them to do one guy’s work for a day, at triple the price. Well, that’s for the ones who actually get assignments. The rest of them are still in training, forced to sit through the aptly named and federally mandated HAZWOPER 40 hours of training, so that they learn how to properly put a shovel full of sand in a plastic bag while someone else ties it off. And even that’s a circle jerk, rife with claims of payoffs, false training certificates, poor training and extortion.

image

What, you thought I was making that up?

Here’s a slide show from Al Reuters.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 07/09/2010 at 02:07 PM   
Filed Under: • Obama, The OneOil, Alternative Energy, and Gas PricesStoopid-People •  
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calendar   Tuesday - May 25, 2010

BOHICA, BOHICA

Congress Set To Quadruple Oil Tax





Oh you knew this one was coming. Especially with that amazingly serendipitous oil disaster down in the Gulf.

Responding to the massive BP oil spill, Congress is getting ready to quadruple—to 32 cents a barrel—a tax on oil used to help finance cleanups. The increase would raise nearly $11 billion over the next decade.

The tax is levied on oil produced in the U.S. or imported from foreign countries. The revenue goes to a fund managed by the Coast Guard to help pay to clean up spills in waterways, such as the Gulf of Mexico.

The tax increase is part of a larger bill that has grown into a nearly $200 billion grab bag of unfinished business that lawmakers hope to complete before Memorial Day. The key provisions are a one-year extension of about 50 popular tax breaks that expired at the end of last year, and expanded unemployment benefits, including subsidies for health insurance, through the end of the year.

The House could vote on the bill as early as Tuesday. Senate leaders hope to complete work on it before Congress goes on a weeklong break next week.

Lawmakers want to increase the current 8-cent-a-barrel tax on oil to make sure there is enough money available to respond to oil spills. At least 6 million gallons of crude have spewed into the Gulf of Mexico since a drilling rig exploded April 20 off the Louisiana coast.

President Barack Obama and congressional leaders have said they expect BP to foot the bill for the cleanup.

“Taxpayers will not pick up the tab,” Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., said Monday.

BP executives told Congress last week they would pay “all legitimate claims” for damages. But the government needs upfront money to respond to spills, as well as money to pay for cleanups when the responsible party is unable to pay, or is unknown. Money spent from the fund can later be recovered from the company responsible for the spill.

The Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund has about $1.5 billion available. Under current law, only $1 billion can be spent from the fund on a single incident. The bill would increase the spending limit to $5 billion.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce said the tax increase was hastily put together, without adequate study, to help pay for an unrelated bill. The tax increase was unveiled Thursday, without any congressional hearings to study its impact.

Depending on the kind of oil and the type of processing used, the refineries can get about 20 - 25 gallons of gasoline from a 42 gallon barrel. So the additional 24¢ worth of tax, if passed on solely to the gasoline market, would raise prices about another penny a gallon. Which means the price of gas will probably go up 50¢.

So while Harry Reid promises we won’t have to pay the cleanup bill for this latest mess, that’s only true in the real long run, after all the litigation and wrangling is over, assuming all of that goes the government’s way. Which means we’re paying for it, now, later, and forever.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 05/25/2010 at 01:39 PM   
Filed Under: • Oil, Alternative Energy, and Gas Prices •  
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calendar   Friday - May 14, 2010

Gee, too bad

Crude Oil Prices Dropping



Oil prices fell to near $73 a barrel Friday amid expectations a slower economic recovery in debt-saddled Europe will weigh on crude demand and rising U.S. crude stocks.

By early afternoon in Europe, benchmark crude for June delivery was down $1.21 to $73.19 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The June contract dropped $1.25 to settle at $74.40.

Crude prices have fallen about 15 percent from early last week as the dollar gained amid a debt crisis in Europe. A stronger dollar makes oil more expensive for investors with other currencies.

The euro fell Friday to $1.2469 from $1.2519 on Thursday, while the British pound was down to $1.4586 from $1.4609.

Oil traders have also been eyeing equity markets as an overall barometer of investor sentiment, and the Dow Jones industrial average fell 1.1 percent Thursday. Most Asian and European stock indices also dropped Friday.

“The price of oil is currently fighting a losing battle against the dollar and the equities markets,” said Mike Sander of Sander Capital.

Uh huh. Yeah, I noticed that the price at the gas station was down 7¢ a gallon. That’s after it went up 5¢ the week or so before that. When I see gas back down to $1.79 I’ll buy into this story. Until then it’s just another bit of hopenchange put out by the MFM.

And the euro is tanking. That’s a non-surprise too, ain’t it?


Meanwhile, back in the Gulf of Mexico ...

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When underground gas surged up uncontrollably through the well, desperate rig workers tried to cap it with a set of supersized emergency cutoff valves known as a blowout preventer. However, the device was leaking hydraulic fluid and missing at least one battery, and one of its valves had been swapped with a useless testing part.

Gee, thanks. Way to go, dumbasses.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 05/14/2010 at 08:38 AM   
Filed Under: • EconomicsOil, Alternative Energy, and Gas Prices •  
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Not that very many people ever read this far down, but this blog was the creation of Allan Kelly and his friend Vilmar. Vilmar moved on to his own blog some time ago, and Allan ran this place alone until his sudden and unexpected death partway through 2006. We all miss him. A lot. Even though he is gone this site will always still be more than a little bit his. We who are left to carry on the BMEWS tradition owe him a great debt of gratitude, and we hope to be able to pay that back by following his last advice to us all:
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Oh, and here's some kind of visitor flag counter thingy. Hey, all the cool blogs have one, so I should too. The Visitors Online thingy up at the top doesn't count anything, but it looks neat. It had better, since I paid actual money for it.
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