Bakken Shale News http://bakkenshale.com Bakken Shale News, MarketPlace, Jobs Sat, 25 Apr 2015 01:19:45 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.1.1 Bakken Rig Count Falls Below 80 http://bakkenshale.com/drilling-rig-count/bakken-rig-count-falls-below-80/ http://bakkenshale.com/drilling-rig-count/bakken-rig-count-falls-below-80/#respond Sat, 25 Apr 2015 01:16:50 +0000 http://bakkenshale.com/?p=7242 Bakken Oil Workers

Bakken Oil Workers

The Bakken-Three Forks rig count dropped by five to 79 rigs running across our coverage area by midday Friday.

In recent Bakken news, the Department of Transportation  issued an emergency order on Friday that establishes a maximum speed of 40 miles an hour for certain trains going through high threat urban areas.

Read more: DOT Tells Oil Tankers to Slow Down

The U.S. rig count fell again this week by another 22 ending at 932 rigs running by midday Friday.  A total of 225 rigs were targeting natural gas (and increase of eight  from the previous week) and 703 were targeting oil in the U.S. (31 less than the previous week). The remainder were drilling service wells (e.g. disposal wells, injection wells, etc.)  79 rigs are running in the Williston Basin across MT, ND, and SD. 78 are in ND alone.

Bakken Oil & Gas Rigs

By midday Friday, the Bakken oil rigs dropped to 78 rigs.  WTI oil prices continued to increase this week and were up $1.60 from the previous week, trading at $57.34/bbl on Friday afternoon. The WTI-Brent saw an increase of $1.83 by week’s end, landing at $65.28. There was one natural active gas rig in the area and futures are trading at $2.25/mmbtu by midday.

McKenzie County continues to lead development this week but fell to 32 running rigs. Williams (17) and Mountrail (14) counties are the next closest producers. View the full list below under the Bakken Drilling by County section.

Activity continues to be dominated by horizontal drilling:

  • 79 rigs are drilling horizontal wells
  • 0 rigs are drilling directional wells
  • 0 rigs are drilling vertical wells

Be sure to visit our Bakken Job Listings to search openings and come back weekly for updates or sign up for alerts – Daily or Weekly Email Alerts

Bakken Drilling by County

County State Previous Week Current Week County State Previous Week Current Week
MCKENZIE ND 36 32 BILLINGS ND 0 0
WILLIAMS ND 17 17 BOTTINEAU ND 0 0
MOUNTRAIL ND 14 14 BURKE ND 0 0
DUNN ND 12 12 GOLDEN VALLEY ND 0 0
DIVIDE ND 4 3 MCLEAN ND 0 0
RICHLAND MT 1 1 MERCER ND 0 0
DANIELS MT 0 0 RENVILLE ND 0 0
DAWSON MT 0 0 STARK ND 0 0
FALLON MT 0 0 WARD ND 0 0
ROOSEVELT MT 0 0 MCHENRY ND 0 0
SHERIDAN MT 0 0 MCHENRY ND 0 0
VALLEY MT 0 0

Bakken Oil & Gas Rigs

Fracking Companies Likely to Close

Pipeline Safety Strengthened in North Dakota

Halliburton Lays off 10% of Workforce

What is the Rig Count?

The Bakken Shale Rig Count is an index of the total number of oil & gas drilling rigs running across Montana and North Dakota. The rigs referred to in this article are for ALL drilling reported by Baker Hughes and not solely wells targeting the Bakken formation. All land rigs and onshore rig data shown here are based upon industry estimates provided by the Baker Hughes Rig Count.

Read more at bakerhughes.com

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Fracking Companies Likely to Close http://bakkenshale.com/news/fracking-companies-likely-to-close/ http://bakkenshale.com/news/fracking-companies-likely-to-close/#respond Thu, 23 Apr 2015 17:46:43 +0000 http://bakkenshale.com/?p=7235 More Fracking Companies Likely to Cose

More Fracking Companies Likely to Cose

Will 50% of the fracking companies be gone by the end of the year?

This is precisely the opinion of Rob Fulks, pressure pumping marketing director at Weatherford International Plc, who spoke with Bloomberg at the annual IHS CERAWeek in Houston last week. Fulk predicts that of the 41 current companies that provide fracking services, only 2o will still be viable at year’s end.

At the start of 2014, there were 61 fracking service providers in the U.S. and those numbers have decreased as the demand for fracking has dropped off dramatically. Many firms are forced to leave wells unfinished because they are no longer economically viable. Another reason for the decline is the big mergers over the last few months, including Halliburton;s plan to buy Baker Hughes.

Related: Halliburton to Merge With Baker Hughes

Weatherford has had their own share of troubles, announcing plans this week to plans to cut 18% of its staff by the end of the second quarter. These actions are part of a spending cut designed to save the company $640 million this year.

According to Bloomberg, Fulks wouldn’t say whether Weatherford is want to acquire other fracking companies or their unused equipment. “We go by and we see yards are locked up and the doors are closed,” he said. “It’s not good for equipment to park anything, whether it’s an airplane, a frack pump or a car.”
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Pipeline Safety Strengthened in North Dakota http://bakkenshale.com/news/pipeline-safety-strengthens-in-north-dakota/ http://bakkenshale.com/news/pipeline-safety-strengthens-in-north-dakota/#respond Wed, 22 Apr 2015 12:46:56 +0000 http://bakkenshale.com/?p=7227 Bakken pipeline threatened

Pipeline Construction

On Monday, Governor Jack Dalrymple took steps to strengthen the state’s regulatory oversight on crude pipelines by signing House Bill 1358.

This legislation provides $1.5 million for a study of pipeline technology and gives the state greater authority to regulate construction.

After a series for accidents involving leaks and accidents, Gov, Dalrymple sought help from the federal Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration in order to help fund university research in pipeline safety.

Related: PHMSA Offers Pipeline Safety Grants

Gov. Dalrymple offered a statement, saying that “This legislation builds on our ongoing work to enhance pipeline safety in North Dakota. With this bill’s passage, North Dakota will require significantly more from pipeline builders and operators. At the same time, the state has significantly expanded its pipeline reclamation fund so that we can also resolve land and water restoration needs that are more than 30 years old.”

The issue of pipeline safety and environmental concerns have increased as more oil has been produced in the United States and producers must find ways to move the product. TransCanada Corporaiton has been working since 2008 to get approval to extend the Keystone, allowing another 800,000 barrels of petroleum to flow from the Bakken region to the Gulf Coast.

Related: Obama Issues Keystone Pipeline Veto

Read more at legis.nd.gov

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Halliburton Lays off 10% of Workforce http://bakkenshale.com/news/halliburton-lays-off-10-of-workforce/ http://bakkenshale.com/news/halliburton-lays-off-10-of-workforce/#respond Tue, 21 Apr 2015 17:26:55 +0000 http://bakkenshale.com/?p=7219 Halliburton Reports 2015 Q1 Loss

Halliburton Reports 2015 Q1 Loss

This week, Halliburton announced first quarter losses of $643 million and acknowledged that they have cut 9,000 jobs over the past two quarters.

The Houston-based oil giant has been forced to scale back operations in light of plummeting energy prices. They confirmed on Monday that the number of layoffs represent approximately 10% of their workforce.

Related: Halliburton Closing Minot Facility

Acting CFO Christian Garcia said “We are continuing to take a hard look at our operations and additional actions will likely be required in the second quarter. We believe that the long-term prospects of the industry remain sound. We are excited about the pending Baker Hughes transaction, which will significantly enhance the growth potential of our organization”

In light of the $35 billion takeover of Baker Hughes, Halliburton is selling several business to secure the necessary regulatory clearance. Once the merger is approved by antitrust regulators, the new entity will surpass Texas-based Schlumberger as the world’s largest oil drilling company.

Related: Halliburton to Merge With Baker Hughes

Read more at halliburton.com

 

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DOT Tells Oil Tankers to Slow Down http://bakkenshale.com/news/dot-tells-oil-tankers-to-slow-down/ http://bakkenshale.com/news/dot-tells-oil-tankers-to-slow-down/#respond Mon, 20 Apr 2015 13:15:07 +0000 http://bakkenshale.com/?p=7210 Crude by Rail

Crude by Rail

The DOT’s Federal Railroad Administration issued an emergency order on Friday that establishes a maximum speed of 40 miles an hour for certain trains going through high threat urban areas.

Related: Bakken Crude by Rail Under Attack

Citing “gaps in the existing regulatory scheme”, the agency beefed up the 2014 voluntary agreement by making this speed limit a requirement for trains hauling crude oil and other flammable liquids. The emergency order defines affected trains as:

  1. 20 or more loaded tank cars in a continuous block or 35 loaded tank cars of class 3 flammable liquid
  2. AND at least one DOT-111 tank car loaded with class 3 flammable liquid
The emergency order states that “Speed is a factor that may contribute to the severity of a derailment or the derailment itself. Speed can affect the probability of an accident. A lower speed may allow for a brake application to stop a train before a collision, or allow a locomotive engineer to identify a safety problem and stop the train before an accident or derailment occurs.”

The requirements go into effect immediately and carry potential penalties of $105,000 dollars for companies that don’t comply.

This order is one of many attempts by the DOT to address this huge issue of rail safety including two previous emergency orders in the last two years. The department has also proposed a more comprehensive series of regulations that are under review by the White House that includes a stronger tank car design and better train braking systems.

Read more at fra.dot.gov

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Bakken Rig Count Falls to 84 http://bakkenshale.com/drilling-rig-count/bakken-rig-count-falls-to-84/ http://bakkenshale.com/drilling-rig-count/bakken-rig-count-falls-to-84/#respond Fri, 17 Apr 2015 20:31:54 +0000 http://bakkenshale.com/?p=7207 Crude by Rail

NTSB Urges Tougher Standards

The Bakken-Three Forks rig count dropped by five to 84 rigs running across our coverage area by midday Friday.

In recent Bakken news, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is urging tougher standards for oil tankers carrying Bakken crude.

Read more: Crude by Rail Facing Tougher Standards

The U.S. rig count fell another 34 to 954 rigs running as of today. A total of 217 rigs were targeting natural gas (a decrease of eight  from the previous week) and 734 were targeting oil in the U.S. (26 less than the previous week). The remainder were drilling service wells (e.g. disposal wells, injection wells, etc.)  84 rigs are running in the Williston Basin across MT, ND, and SD. 83 are in ND alone.

Bakken Oil & Gas Rigs

By midday Friday, the Bakken oil rigs dropped to 84 rigs.  WTI oil prices increased $4.10 from the previous week, trading at $55.74/bbl on Friday afternoon. The WTI-Brent saw an increase of $5.58 by week’s end, landing at $63.45. There are currently no natural active gas rigs in the area and futures are trading at $2.63/mmbtu.

McKenzie County continues to lead development this week but fell to 36 running rigs. Williams (17) and Mountrail (14) counties are the next closest producers. View the full list below under the Bakken Drilling by County section.

Activity continues to be dominated by horizontal drilling:

  • 83 rigs are drilling horizontal wells
  • 1 rigs are drilling directional wells
  • 0 rigs are drilling vertical wells

Be sure to visit our Bakken Job Listings to search openings and come back weekly for updates or sign up for alerts – Daily or Weekly Email Alerts

Bakken Drilling by County

County State Previous Week Current Week County State Previous Week Current Week
MCKENZIE ND 41 36 WIBAUX MT 0 0
WILLIAMS ND 16 17 BILLINGS ND 0 0
MOUNTRAIL ND 15 14 BOTTINEAU ND 0 0
DUNN ND 12 12 BURKE ND 0 0
DIVIDE ND 4 4 GOLDEN VALLEY ND 0 0
RICHLAND MT 1 1 MCLEAN ND 0 0
DANIELS MT 0 0 MERCER ND 0 0
DAWSON MT 0 0 RENVILLE ND 0 0
FALLON MT 0 0 STARK ND 0 0
ROOSEVELT MT 0 0 WARD ND 0 0
SHERIDAN MT 0 0 MCHENRY ND 0 0
VALLEY MT 0 0

Bakken Oil & Gas Rigs

Will Bakken Man Camps Disappear?

Bakken Production Expected to Decline

PHMSA Offers Pipeline Safety Grants

What is the Rig Count?

The Bakken Shale Rig Count is an index of the total number of oil & gas drilling rigs running across Montana and North Dakota. The rigs referred to in this article are for ALL drilling reported by Baker Hughes and not solely wells targeting the Bakken formation. All land rigs and onshore rig data shown here are based upon industry estimates provided by the Baker Hughes Rig Count.

Read more at bakerhughes.com

 

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Will Bakken Man Camps Disappear? http://bakkenshale.com/news/bakken-man-camps-disappear/ http://bakkenshale.com/news/bakken-man-camps-disappear/#respond Thu, 16 Apr 2015 18:04:15 +0000 http://bakkenshale.com/?p=7200 Budget Cuts Affect Man Camps

Budget Cuts Affect Man Camps

As low crude prices continue to ravage the industry, the latest victims may be the man camps throughout the Bakken. These camps that have housed thousands are slowly emptying, and some are folding for good.

Read about Bakken Housing, Lodging, Hotels, & Man Camps

Man camps provide temporary employee housing to oilfield workers and have been a prominent feature dotting the landscape since the oil boom brought an influx of people to the region. These camps often provide dining, laundry, and recreational facilities and were given as a perk when things were hopping. But with energy companies tightening their belts, providing housing for workers is quickly on the chopping block for some companies. Instead of offering these perks, some employers are asking workers to cover their own rent, clothing, and transportation.

Jeff Zarling, president of Williston (N.D.)-based Dawa Solutions Group told Bloomberg, “It was a necessity of recruiting. But today, what we’re seeing is companies want to get out of the housing business.”

Several companies have recently announced intentions to get out of the man camp business including Capital Lodge, one of the largest man camps in the Bakken that has plans to downsize and become a commercial hotel-style operation. Civeo Corp reported an 89% decline in their share price this year. The company slashed its workforce on Monday and said revenue could fall by a third.

Read more at bloomberg.com

 

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Crude by Rail Facing Tougher Standards http://bakkenshale.com/news/crude-by-rail-facing-tougher-standards/ http://bakkenshale.com/news/crude-by-rail-facing-tougher-standards/#respond Wed, 15 Apr 2015 18:17:47 +0000 http://bakkenshale.com/?p=7197 NTSB Calls for Stricter Rail Standards

NTSB Calls for Stricter Rail Standards

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is urging tougher standards for oil tankers carrying Bakken crude.

Related: Bakken Crude by Rail Under Attack

In a 10 page letter to the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA), the NTSB outlined its findings from their study of recent train derailment accidents and concluded that the current fleet of DOT-111 tank cars rupture too quickly and result in spillage and ignition. The agency also found that performance of the industry’s enhanced CPC-1232 rail car is unsatisfactory.

Controversy over the safety of moving crude by rail has skyrocketed as several high-profile accidents have recently made headlines. This combined with a sharp increase in crude by rail since the start of the oil boom has many concerned.

Related: Crude by Rail Up 1700%

“We can’t wait a decade for safer rail cars,” said NTSB Chairman Christopher A. Hart. “Crude oil rail traffic is increasing exponentially. That is why this issue is on our Most Wanted List of Safety Improvements. The industry needs to make this issue a priority and expedite the safety enhancements, otherwise, we continue to put our communities at risk.”

Based on their study, the NTSB gave the following recommendations that would require:

  1. All new and existing tank cars used to transport all Class 3 flammable liquids be equipped with thermal protection systems that meet or exceed the thermal performance standards
  2. All new and existing tank cars used to transport all Class 3 flammable liquids be equipped with appropriately sized pressure relief devices that allow the release of pressure under fire conditions and that minimizes the likelihood of energetic thermal ruptures
  3. An aggressive, intermediate progress milestone schedule, such as a 20 percent yearly completion metric over a 5-year implementation period, for the replacement or retrofitting of legacy DOT-111 and CPC-1232 tank cars to appropriate tank car performance standards
  4. Establishment of a publicly available reporting mechanism that reports at least annually

Read more at ntsb.gov

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Bakken Production Expected to Decline http://bakkenshale.com/news/bakken-production-expected-to-decline/ http://bakkenshale.com/news/bakken-production-expected-to-decline/#respond Tue, 14 Apr 2015 16:54:09 +0000 http://bakkenshale.com/?p=7189 Bakken Production Will Decline in May

Bakken Production Will Decline in May

For the first time since the Energy Information Administration (EIA) began tracking drilling productivity, the agency reported on Monday that oil and gas production will decrease for the Bakken and other shale formations across the country.

Shale production has been a major player in boosting US output to more that 4 million bpd and has played a key role in the collapse of oil prices worldwide in 2014.

Production from the Bakken formation has increased 28% year-over-year despite declining rig counts across the area.

Related: Record Production for Bakken

The EIA estimates that the Bakken will experience a decline of 23,000 barrels of oil a day to 1.3 million in May. Natural gas will also decline by 21 million cubit feet per day.

Speaking with Bloomberg, Carl Larry, head of oil and gas for Frost & Sullivan LP  said, “We’re going off an inevitable cliff because of the shrinking rig counts. The question is how fast is the decline going to go. If it’s fast, if it’s steep, there could be a big jump in the market.”

Read more at eia.gov

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PHMSA Offers Pipeline Safety Grants http://bakkenshale.com/news/phmsa-offers-pipeline-safety-grants/ http://bakkenshale.com/news/phmsa-offers-pipeline-safety-grants/#respond Mon, 13 Apr 2015 16:06:18 +0000 http://bakkenshale.com/?p=7185 Bakken pipeline threatened

Pipeline Construction

As oil pipeline safety concerns escalate across the country, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) is ramping up its efforts to meet the growing demand for innovation.

Related:ND Defines Stricter Rules for Pipeline Construction

In addition to hiring more that 100 new safety inspectors this year, the PHMSA will also be awarding $2 million in grants for students and faculty to research pipeline safety solutions. These grants designed to expose new engineers and scientists to the technical side of the energy transportation sector.

“We’re not simply offering grants through the CAAP; we’re demonstrating to engineering and technical students that their disciplines are in demand in the energy pipeline sector,” said PHMSA Acting Administrator Timothy Butters. “PHMSA provides safety oversight for the country’s 2.6-million-mile pipeline network, and we need out-of-the-box thinkers.”

Grant proposals will be evaluated on scientific merit, quality, management plans, work tasks, budgets and schedules. The PHMSA is specifically seeking projects that address technical gaps in the following areas:

  • Preventing and Mitigating Pipeline Corrosion
  • Developing Locatable Plastic Pipelines
  • Developing Inspection Tools to Quantify Pipe Strength and Toughness
U.S. Senator for North Dakota John Hoeven, commented“As we work towards building a comprehensive ‘all-of-the-above’ energy plan for our country, it’s important to ensure that we build the right kind of infrastructure to support our energy needs, now and into the future,” Hoeven said. “We must ensure that our infrastructure is reliable, safe and efficient, and this grant will enable universities to do the innovative research that will do just that.” 

The debate around the safety of cruse pipelines has heated up since the shale oil boom in 2008. Most recently, President Obama delayed the Keystone pipeline when he vetoed bill saying he wants to hold off a final decision until further environmental reviews are complete.

Related: Obama Issues Keystone Pipeline Veto

Read more at phmsa.dot.gov

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