|Day's range||10.44 - 10.44|
Enterprise Products Partners' (EPD) new Mentone cryogenic natural gas processing plant is set to help Permian producers to increase the commercialization of their products.
The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Pioneer Natural Resources, Chevron, Talos Energy and Murphy Oil
(Bloomberg) -- Kuwait plans to restart oil production by March at the Wafra field that it shares with Saudi Arabia, more than four years after the neighbors halted output.Wafra has been shut since May 2015, due to a dispute over Saudi Arabia’s renewal of Chevron Corp.’s concession there. The field will resume pumping by March, Kuwaiti Oil Minister Khaled Al-Fadhel said Wednesday by phone.Kuwait’s parliament voted earlier in the day to ratify the agreement the country reached with Saudi Arabia in December to resume production at their shared oil deposits. Fields in the so-called neutral zone can produce as much as 500,000 barrels a day -- more than each of OPEC’s three smallest members pumped last month.Kuwaitis and Saudis alike have said a resumption would be unlikely to add significant amounts of oil to the market within the current duration of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries’ production cuts deal, which runs until the end of March. The neutral zone, spanning more then 5,700 square kilometers (2,200 square miles), was created by a 1922 treaty between Kuwait and the fledgling Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. In the 1970s, the two Gulf Arab monarchies agreed to divide the area and incorporate each half into their respective territory while still sharing and jointly managing the zone’s petroleum wealth. The region contains two main oil fields: the onshore Wafra and offshore Khafji.Khafji was shut down in 2014 after a spat between the neighbors. The disagreement escalated over the Wafra field, when Saudi Arabia extended the original 60-year concession of the field, giving California-based Chevron, through its subsidiary Saudi Arabian Chevron Inc., rights there until 2039. Kuwait was unhappy over the announcement and claims Riyadh never consulted it about the extension.Chevron, which operates Wafra with Kuwait Gulf Oil Co., said in December that it expected full production there to be restored within 12 months.To contact the reporter on this story: Fiona MacDonald in Kuwait at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Nayla Razzouk at email@example.com, Bruce Stanley, Amanda JordanFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- Back in 1999, one of the most talked-about scenes in one of the most talked-about movies involved a dancing plastic bag. It was surely a more innocent time. Still, two decades on from American Beauty and its bag-shaped pretensions, this is an opportune moment to reiterate that it’s just trash. China has unveiled plans to curb the use of non-degradable plastic bags in supermarkets and malls across major cities as well as food-delivery services. The problem with plastic isn’t plastic, much of which is useful and likely irreplaceable. Rather, it’s that we produce a lot of low-value but long-lasting plastic — especially packaging — that overwhelms our waste-management capabilities (or inclinations, for that matter) and winds up polluting the planet. Plastic bags blowing about in a fall breeze aren’t, as the movie contends, a metaphor for the hidden wonders of suburbia; they’re an expression of failure.As my colleague David Fickling writes, growing demand for petrochemicals is an article of faith in the oil and gas business, and one that gets a lot more airing these days to offset the disquieting narrative of electric vehicles stalling out gasoline consumption. In its most recent Energy Outlook, BP Plc identified “non-combusted” demand for oil as the single-biggest source of projected growth through 2040, with single-use plastics accounting for almost 40% of that 5.5 million barrels a day.Under an alternative future in which governments phase out single-use plastics aggressively and ban them altogether by 2040, BP’s outlook has global oil demand peaking in the late 2020s. That seemed like a far-off jetpack era back when we were watching dancing bags but now looms with humdrum imminence. This matters a lot because the oil industry plans to invest north of $34 billion a year in petrochemicals through 2024, according to estimates from Sanford C. Bernstein — equivalent to building the entire fixed asset base of a supermajor, Chevron Corp.China’s latest plan isn’t anywhere near a worldwide moratorium on Ziplocs. Yet it presents a risk that goes beyond this or that forecast for oil demand.It just so happens that a day or two after Beijing’s announcement, the Bank for International Settlements released a new report called “The Green Swan.” This lays out risks posed to the global financial system by climate change and the limitations of current models in quantifying potential impacts. One point raised is that while economists traditionally support carbon pricing to mitigate climate change, “given the size of the challenge ahead, carbon prices may need to skyrocket in a very short time span towards much higher levels than currently prevail.” In other words, we left it too long, so we now need to make carbon prohibitively expensive.Analogous to that is the act of just prohibiting stuff — which is where China’s new regulations come in. Those aren’t carbon-related per se, but the mechanism is the same. In theory, a mixture of price signals, recycling programs and consumer education could moderate the problem of plastic pollution. In practice, less than a fifth of plastic is recycled, a finding sometimes framed as a growth-driver for the industry. The relatively low value of the product, use of mixed plastics and general consumer confusion over what goes into what recycling bucket are big obstacles to getting that figure higher.Faced with that, more national and local governments are choosing to effectively set the “price” for certain plastics at some level tending to infinity by just banning them. In that sense, the difficulties of recycling may be less a bull argument for plastics and more a precursor to drastic measures.The resort to policies of interdiction, rather than market-led solutions, is itself a green swan: fiat dislocation that is hard to model. It doesn’t take a global ban on single-use plastics to present a problem to an oil industry that has (a) made petrochemicals a central part of its growth story and (b) begun deploying billions already in projects ranging from Saudi Arabian Oil Co.’s Asian joint ventures to Exxon Mobil Corp.’s shale-linked crackers on the Gulf coast.“To stop plastic use entirely will be hard, but to kill demand growth will require solutions for only 3% of global demand each year,” writes Kingsmill Bond, energy strategist at Carbon Tracker and co-author of a forthcoming report on the future of plastic demand. An ethylene plant running at 60% of capacity wouldn’t be stranded per se, but it wouldn’t be a must-own either.The cloud of uncertainty gathering over future oil demand raises the industry’s cost of capital, manifested in demands for higher cash payouts. BlackRock Inc.’s Larry Fink made much the same point in last week’s climate letter (including the potential for green swans, though he didn’t use that phrase). Today’s teenagers don’t sit around filming pollution; they head to Davos and lambast tycoons about it. In this sense, China’s bag ban may be less important for its specific impact on oil volumes and more for its general impact on expectations of growth and thereby sentiment and risk premiums for oil-related assets. Much as I hate to admit it, sometimes a bag is more than just a bag.To contact the author of this story: Liam Denning at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Mark Gongloff at email@example.comThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of Bloomberg LP and its owners.Liam Denning is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering energy, mining and commodities. He previously was editor of the Wall Street Journal's Heard on the Street column and wrote for the Financial Times' Lex column. He was also an investment banker.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinionSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
Schlumberger (SLB) reported upbeat Q4 earnings on strength in its international operations. Meanwhile, Eni (E) announced the flow of first oil from the Agogo field, offshore Angola.
Oil prices fell on Tuesday morning as a deadly virus in China stoked fears of an economic slowdown, and even the escalation in Libya’s oil war couldn’t bring bullish sentiment back
(Bloomberg) -- Sign up here to receive the Davos Diary, a special daily newsletter that will run from Jan. 20-24.Microsoft Corp’s chief executive officer said he worries that mistrust between the U.S. and China will increase technology costs and hurt economic growth at a critical time.Using the $470 billion semiconductor industry as an example of a sector that is already globally interconnected, Satya Nadella said the two countries will have to find ways to work together, rather than creating different supply chains for each country.“All you are doing is increasing transaction costs for everybody if you completely separate,” Nadella said in an interview with Bloomberg News Editor-in-Chief John Micklethwait at Bloomberg’s The Year Ahead conference in Davos. That’s a concern as the executive said the world is on the cusp of a revolution around technology and artificial intelligence.“If we take steps back in trust or increase transaction costs around technology, all we are doing is sacrificing global economic growth,” he said.The Trump administration is considering steps to further limit the ability of U.S. companies to supply Huawei Technologies Co., China’s flagship tech company, in addition to pressuring countries around the world to avoid using its equipment for 5G mobile networks.The agreement signed last week between the U.S. and China was “not sufficient,” said Nadella, but represented “progress” on the issue of intellectual property protections for U.S. technology companies working with China.To enable different countries to use technology from outside their borders, Nadella suggested a system that relies on verification. For example, Microsoft has set up technology centers where various governments can inspect the Windows source code to satisfy themselves as to the security of the product.“There has to be a way for any country to be able to trust, through verification, the technology that they are using as part of a their infrastructure,” he said. “Mechanisms like that have to be in place, and then build trade on top of it instead of thinking of trade and trust as the same thing.”Two InternetsNadella said he worries about the development of two separate internets, noting that to some degree they already exist “and they will get amplified in the future” with massive technology companies already in place in China.The viewpoint clashes with Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, who has been skeptical about the idea that ongoing U.S.-China trade tensions could ever lead to a bifurcated system of two internets.China and the U.S. are the two leading AI superpowers, however the cooling political relations between them have slowed the international collaboration.Even amid the tensions, countries should find ways to establish global norms around cybersecurity -- such as agreements not to hack each other’s citizens -- privacy and responsible AI, Nadella said. “Despite whatever trade dynamic causes people to separate, you would hope people would recognize we all benefit from more global norms, not less.“ Earlier this month, in a blog post about his goals for the year, Nadella said these areas are essential to earn and sustain people’s trust.Nadella also warned that countries that fail to attract immigrants will lose out as the global tech industry continues to grow. The CEO has previously voiced concern about India’s Citizenship Amendment Act, which bans undocumented Muslim migrants from neighboring countries from seeking citizenship in India while allowing immigrants from other religions to do so, calling it “sad.”“Every country is rethinking what is in their national interest,” he said. Governments need to “maintain that modicum of enlightenment and not think about it very narrowly,” Nadella said, adding that “people will only come when people know you’re an immigrant-friendly country.“However, Nadella said he remained hopeful. “I’m an India optimist,” he said. “The fact that there is a 70-year history of nation building, I think it’s a very strong foundation. I grew up in that country. I’m proud of that heritage. I’m influenced by that experience.”Carbon IssuesMicrosoft has recently unveiled plans to invest $1 billion to back companies and organizations working on technologies to remove or reduce carbon from the atmosphere, saying efforts to merely emit less carbon aren’t enough to prevent catastrophic climate change.“We will now have to make sure all our data center operations are first consuming renewable energy,” Nadella said.Microsoft and Amazon.com Inc., along with other technology companies, have been criticized for supplying software and cloud services to large oil and gas companies like Chevron Corp. and BP Plc. BlackRock Inc.’s Larry Fink has been trailed to work and public engagements by protesters decrying the investment firm for inaction on global warming and other issues.Activists have been pushing for companies to stop working with the largest producers of greenhouse gases. BlackRock has said it will cut exposure to thermal coal as the world’s largest asset manager moves to address climate change.Nadella declined to comment on whether Microsoft would stop working with the major carbon producers. “The energy transition is going to include all of us,” he said.(Updates with comment about global policies on security, privacy in 12th paragraph)To contact the reporters on this story: Dina Bass in Seattle at firstname.lastname@example.org;Amy Thomson in London at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Giles Turner at firstname.lastname@example.org, Molly SchuetzFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
Given SM Energy's (SM) increasing focus on oil, specifically in the Permian and Eagle Ford regions, we believe that the company will be able to boost oil-weighted activity.
While LNG prices plunge due to a supply glut, this gives Sinopec (SNP) a leverage over Cheniere, which is the supplier in the potential $16-billion LNG deal.
Had there been no waiver extensions, Chevron's (CVX) exit would follow close on the heels of various other U.S.-based players that left Venezuela.
TOTAL (TOT) is on track with its long-term plan to add 25 GW of renewable energy by 2025. In this regard, it is going to develop the 800-MW Al Kharsaah Solar PV IPP Project in Qatar.
Eni (E) starts production from the Agogo oilfield only nine months following its discovery, supported by operational synergies from FPSO Ngoma.
The U.S. Treasury Department on Saturday granted permission for Chevron Corp, the last major U.S. oil company operating in Venezuela, to continue working in the country until April 22. The United States last year imposed sanctions that barred imports of Venezuelan oil and transactions made in U.S. dollars with Venezuela's state-run oil company PDVSA. The move was designed to starve the country of oil dollars and oust President Nicolas Maduro.
(Bloomberg) -- Chevron Corp. and four oilfield service providers won U.S. government approval to continue working in Venezuela for 90 days, allowing the companies’ access to the world’s largest reserves of crude despite sanctions on the crisis-stricken country.The U.S. Treasury Department decision is the fourth waiver granted since sanctions were announced in November 2018 in what is becoming a fraught quarterly ritual for the companies. Along with Chevron, the waiver also exempts Baker Hughes Co., Halliburton Co., Schlumberger Ltd. and Weatherford International Ltd. from sanctions.The waiver was extended through 12:01 a.m. Eastern time on April 22. The previous waiver was due to expire on Jan. 22.Venezuela’s daily oil production slumped to a 75-year low of 792,000 barrels last year as sanctions crippled the economy and cut off access to U.S. refiners. As a result, the nation’s crude exports that bankroll the regime tumbled to the lowest since 1985.While Venezuela accounts for only about 1% of Chevron’s global crude production, it remains strategically important given the nation’s vast untapped reserves. Proponents of Chevron’s position argued that withdrawing would cede market share and influence to Russian and Chinese companies.Chevron is the last remaining major U.S. explorer in the country. Rivals Exxon Mobil Corp. and ConocoPhillips exited a decade ago after then-President Hugo Chavez seized control of their assets.\--With assistance from Fabiola Zerpa.To contact the reporters on this story: Lucia Kassai in Houston at email@example.com;Kevin Crowley in Houston at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: David Marino at email@example.com, Brian Wingfield, Rachel GrahamFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- Microsoft Corp. unveiled plans to invest $1 billion to back companies and organizations working on technologies to remove or reduce carbon from the earth’s atmosphere, saying efforts to merely emit less carbon aren’t enough to prevent catastrophic climate change.The company’s Climate Innovation Fund will provide money over the next four years for equity investments, debt financing and other support for the development of carbon-removal technology. The fund won’t be used for Microsoft's philanthropic efforts on climate, although those will continue separately. The software maker is also pledging to be “carbon negative”, meaning it will remove more carbon than it emits, by 2030. “This is the decade for urgent action for Microsoft and all of us,” Microsoft Chief Executive Officer Satya Nadella said at an event Thursday at the company’s Redmond, Washington, campus.Engineers have devised ways to capture carbon dioxide, either pulling it from the exhaust of smokestacks or sucking it directly from open air. The gas can be stored underground or put to use — for example, it can be incorporated into products such as cement. Because most governments don’t impose a penalty or tax for carbon emissions, there’s currently no monetary incentive for companies to buy the technologies, and developers have struggled to turn them into viable businesses. Most remain stuck at the demonstration stage, building showcase projects that illustrate what could be done, if someone were willing to pay for it.“A billion dollars is a lot and a little at the same time when you think about the investment level that's probably going to be needed,” Microsoft President and Chief Legal Officer Brad Smith said Monday in a meeting with editors in New York previewing the event. It’s not clear what efforts or companies Microsoft will back — it will now start to consider options for deploying the fund. But there are various ideas and efforts already under development. Switzerland's Climeworks, for example, employs a reusable membrane to capture CO2 pulled through machinery by fans. It then sells the concentrated gas, marketing it to beverage companies and plastic makers. Carbon Engineering, based in Canada, uses a chemical reaction to remove carbon dioxide directly from the air, with the gas either stored underground or used to make fuel.Carbon capture, the vacuum cleaner the climate needs: QuickTakeAs it cuts its emissions, Microsoft plans to tackle the amount of carbon it generates and the emissions released into the environment by suppliers and customers. The company said it will use 100% renewable energy for all its buildings and data centers by 2025, and electrify all campus vehicles by 2030. That’s part of Microsoft’s plan to be carbon negative in 10 years, meaning it will remove more carbon from the atmosphere than it emits. Two decades after that, the software maker said it will have removed from the environment all the carbon it has emitted either directly or by electrical consumption since its founding in 1975.Some companies and local governments have been stepping up action on the environment, following the U.S. withdrawal from the Paris climate accord and amid rising concern about the pace of climate change. Companies like Microsoft and Amazon.com Inc. are also under pressure from employees to do more, with Amazon facing vocal protests from a group called Amazon Employees for Climate Justice. In September, Amazon announced what it called the Climate Pledge, a commitment to meet the goals of the Paris agreement 10 years early, and invited other companies to sign on. Microsoft last year joined the Climate Leadership Council to advocate for a carbon tax. And on Jan. 14, BlackRock Inc. Chief Executive Officer Larry Fink said climate change is “almost invariably the top issue that clients around the world raise with BlackRock.” Microsoft co-founder and board member Bill Gates is increasingly focusing on climate issues and plans a book on the topic later this year.Microsoft and Amazon, along with other technology companies, have also been criticized for supplying software and cloud services to large oil and gas companies like Chevron Corp. and BP Plc. BlackRock’s Fink has been trailed to work and public engagements by protesters decrying the investment firm for inaction on global warming and other issues. Greenpeace praised Microsoft for its pledge Thursday, but said the software maker needs to do more.“While there is a lot to celebrate in Microsoft’s announcement, a gaping hole remains unaddressed: Microsoft’s expanding efforts to help fossil fuel companies drill more oil and gas with machine-learning and other AI technologies,” Greenpeace’s Elizabeth Jardim said in an emailed statement. “To truly become carbon negative, Microsoft must end its AI contracts with Big Oil.”Part of Microsoft’s announcement Thursday addresses the actions of customers, and the company will begin a plan to have clients and suppliers use Microsoft technology to reduce their own carbon footprints. Starting next year, Microsoft will make carbon reduction part of its procurement deals. The company is announcing an Azure Sustainability Calculator that lets cloud customers look at their own carbon output and shows the benefits of moving to the cloud from in-house server farms—a shift that could benefit Microsoft’s Azure business."Microsoft is at the helm of what could be a new movement towards negative emissions; it’s a big step beyond what most companies have committed to. But to really shift the needle on climate change, we need 1,000 other Microsofts to follow-suit and turn rhetoric into action," the Environmental Defense Fund said in a statement.The company said it intends to take action on several types of emissions, including direct and electrical and heat use, but also the indirect carbon emissions that come from things like manufacturing, materials in its buildings and the electricity consumers use when deploying Microsoft products. At Microsoft, that indirect category is about three times the others combined. While the company said it has been “carbon neutral” since 2012, “our recent work has led us to conclude that this is an area where we’re far better served by humility than pride. And we believe this is true not only for ourselves, but for every business and organization on the planet,” Smith wrote in a blog post announcing the plans. Microsoft accomplished carbon neutrality, like most companies, by reducing and avoiding emissions, Smith said, but that’s no longer enough.“We will not solve this problem by doing nothing,” Smith said. (Updates with comments from Greenpeace in 10th paragraph.)\--With assistance from David R Baker and Max Chafkin.To contact the author of this story: Dina Bass in Seattle at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Jillian Ward at email@example.com, Andrew PollackFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
Wall Street rallied following the first phase of the U.S.-China trade pact, with Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 closing at record highs.
In a newly released interview, longtime environmental advocate and lawyer Robert Kennedy Jr. sounds the alarm about the climate crisis.