Queensland invites investment from mining companies

Informa Insights

Exploration Mining and Processing FundamentalsMore mining engineering projects could be set for Queensland in the near future, with the state government urging companies in the industry to invest.

Natural resources and mines assistant minister Lisa France said the Newman government is working hard to make Queensland an attractive spot for mining firms.

Ms France highlighted the importance of the resources sector to the local economy and said significant progress has been made in removing any regulatory burdens.

“We have an abundance of resources and we understand that exploration is where it all begins,” she explained.

“As a government, we are determined to find ways we can continue to cut unnecessary green and red tape.”

Ms France was addressing the Queensland Exploration Council Capital Raising Seminar last week (October 22), noting that the last 18 months have been particularly promising for mining developments.

She said the new process for exploration permits is a good example…

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Hydraulic Fracturing Controversy: An Opportunity for the United States to Lead and Set the Record Straight

Policy Interns

New estimates released Friday, October 4, by the Energy Information Administration (EIA), shows the United States (U.S.) pulling ahead of both Saudi Arabia and Russia in oil and natural gas production in 2013.  There’s no doubt that this rise to the top is a result of recent development in a new drilling technique known as fracking, a technique that has unlocked large quantities of oil and gas from shale rock formations.

Shale, a fine-grained sedimentary rock that can hold deposits of petroleum and natural gas , can be accessed using fracking and horizontal drilling. The success in using this technique in the United States has attracted interest in countries with shale reserves to want to exploit their reserves using fracking.

Fracking, the technology used to drill unconventional natural gas has its positive impacts including job creation, reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the long term by substituting natural gas…

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Article: China aims to cut costs associated with shale natural gas production

The costs associated with shale gas are beginning to bite in China as key executives are viewing current models as untenable.  China’s reserves are also more complex to extract than most, and this is not helped by the lack of appropriate drilling equipment in the country.  There is a feeling that costs, particularly fixed costs, will have to fall if shale technology is to be taken up by businesses as a mainstream energy source.

Chinese energy companies are looking for ways to reduce the cost associated with shale natural gas operations, executives say.

“We’re … considering cutting the costs by buying domestic drilling equipment [and] drilling wells in a large scale,” Ma Yongsheng, chief geologist for state-owned China Petroleum and Chemical Corp., was quoted as saying by the Platts energy news service Friday.

Platts reported it costs approximately $14.7 million to drill one shale natural gas well in the country.

Another executive, Jin Shumao, vice president of Chinese energy services company SPT Group, said the cost could be cut in half by the end of the decade.

China’s shale reserves are considered more geologically complex than those in the United States, where it costs approximately $3.2 million to drill a shale natural gas well.

The U.S. Energy Department’s Energy Information Administration said last week China is the only country outside of North America that has reported lucrative deposits of shale natural gas. Shale gas in China, however, accounts for 1 percent of its total natural gas production.

The full article is visible via the link below – Pankaj Oswal


Minister: fracking will “reindustrialise South African economy”

Global Risk Insights

Fracking in the Karoo region may offer a much-needed revitalisation of the South African economy, despite public protests against exploration and extraction. Benefits are likely to offset environmental and political risks.

Nearly a thousand protestors marched through Cape Town last Friday, carrying signs warning Shell South Africa to “Frack Off.” After lifting a moratorium on hydraulic fracturing – more popularly known as “fracking” – last year, the South African government published proposed fracking regulations on October 15th, drawing the ire of conservationist groups and residents of the shale-rich Karoo region.

The Karoo region, an 800-mile stretch of arid land between Cape Town and Johannesburg, may be the site of as much as 485 trillion cubic feet of shale gas reserves. If these estimates prove correct, South Africa, as home to the fifth-largest shale gas reserves in the world, could expect to reap the rewards of economic development…

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APPEA: Oil and gas training should be a priority

Informa Insights

Oil and gas fundamentalsOil and gas training should be made a priority in the wake of the federal election, an industry group has suggested.

The Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association (APPEA) claimed oil and gas training is one of several areas where the new government could provide the resources sector with the tools to experience further growth.

“[The government must] address the need for providing a skilled workforce for Australian energy developments through training and continuing access to overseas labour markets,” the organisation explained.

“To maximise investment, jobs growth and tax revenue, the new government must commit to policies that pursue more export sales, while also delivering more gas domestically to households and factories.”

Citing figures from Deloitte Access Economics, the APPEA said natural gas contributed around $30 billion to the national economy last year, with $8 billion paid in tax.

Not only this, the industry provided 100,000 jobs across the country…

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Article: CB&I announces technology contract from GS Caltex Corporation

In a major coup for CB&I, the company will be working for Caltex on the creation of a paraxylene.  The consulting for the unit in Yeosu, South Korea is a big business win for CB&I and something that will vastly improve Caltex’s efficiency in this regard.

CB&I announced today it has been awarded a contract by GS Caltex Corporation for the license, basic engineering and catalyst supply for a new paraxylene unit to be built in Yeosu, Korea.

The unit will use the BP paraxylene technology, exclusively licensed by CB&I, and will have a world scale design capacity. Start-up is expected in 2016.

The technology employs an innovative energy-efficient crystallization process to produce paraxylene and will provide GS Caltex with a reliable, low cost solution for its world scale plant.

“The energy efficiency and operating cost benefits afforded by this proven crystallization-based paraxylene technology are very attractive to the industry as evidenced by this latest award,” said Daniel McCarthy, Executive Vice President and President of CB&I’s Technology operating group. “The technology is employed in BP’s operating units and has proven to be robust and reliable.”

Paraxylene is an intermediate in the manufacture of polyester, a polymer used for a variety of applications from fibers to engineering plastics.

The full article is visible via the link below – Pankaj Oswal


The Oil and Gas Post: How US’ Oil Will Shape the World of Energy Diplomacy

American oil remains on the rise and it seriously affect the bread and butter exports from the Middle East and Russia.

Alphaenergy Belgrade

Last Friday (11th October 2013) the International Energy Agency announced that the US would become the world’s largest oil producer next year overtaking Russia. “With output of more than 10 million barrels per day for the last two quarters, its highest in decades, the nation is set to become the largest non OPEC liquids producer by the second quarter of 2014, overtaking Russia. And that’s not even counting biofuels and refinery gains,” the IEA said. (Reuters)

A growing oil production has enabled the United States to cede its ranking as a top oil importer to China.

This reshuffle in the oil importing and exporting statistics is likely to have an impact on energy markets as well as on a global diplomacy.

Impact on the prices

Firstly, with a strong American output West Texas Intermediate (WTI) – Brent spread is likely to blow out. The European benchmark crude’s premium to…

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