The U.S. petroleum industry is still ringing in the New Year with much to celebrate. Oil prices are at highs not seen since late 2014 and the forecast for 2018 is looking good.
According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), operators are projected to increase overall domestic oil production by 10 percent, elevating output to more than 10 million barrels per day and surpassing the previous all-time high. With WTI price above $60 a barrel, the current outlook seems to be delivering just what every displaced oilfield worker and strapped owner/operator has been wishing for since the latest downturn.
Coupled with a Trump-sized regulatory rollback, 2018 promises to be a “YUUUGE” year for oil and natural gas, barring turmoil overseas or dramatic changes to output by OPEC and Russia. EIA projections expect U.S. LNG exports to average about 3 bcfd (billion cubic feet per day) this year, up from 1.9 bcfd in 2017.
BLM Leases – Recently, the Bureau of Land Management’s Butte Field Office announced a possible auction of 63,496 acres of federal public land for petroleum leases, with more than 4,000 acres of land in Park County.
Environmental groups were quick to petition, filing an administrative appeal. Park County Environmental Council and local landowners (Livingston) worry that potential drilling would negatively impact the tourism economy in the area.
The formal protest period on the proposed parcels ends this week. See more here.
Sage grouse – Since Governor Bullock signed an executive order (no. 10-2014) creating the Montana Sage Grouse Oversight Team and the Montana Sage Grouse Habitat Conservation Program, and the 2015 Legislature passed the Montana Greater Sage Grouse Stewardship Act to establish the Sage Grouse Stewardship Account, little has been done to move the ball forward through the Oversight Team.
As changes loom at the federal level, Montana has yet to approve a Habitat Quantification Tool to determine debits (impacts) and credits (conservation/improvements).
Without the HQT, projects face unnecessary delays and costs associated with waiting for the “go ahead”.
Pipelines – Montana received exciting news from MPA Member, ONEOK, which has proposed a 900-mile pipeline to transport up to 240,000 barrels per day of unfractionated natural gas liquids (NGL) from Sidney, Montana to Kansas. The proposal couldn’t be timelier, as record oil production in the Bakken may be threatened by the current threshold on flared natural gas at well sites – a problem far greater in North Dakota than in Montana, where the state regulatory agency (Montana Board of Oil and Gas Conservation) boasts a more than 90% capture rate.
The proposed Cedar Creek Anticline Pipeline will start in the Bell Creek oil field in Powder River County, Wyoming, and span 110 miles through Carter County into Fallon County, Montana. The pipeline will transport up to 400 million standard cubic feet of compressed carbon dioxide (CO2) per day for enhanced oil recovery (EOR).
The exact timing and schedule of the flood depends on future oil prices, permitting, and availability of CO2.
Last fall, MPA submitted comments in support of the pipeline to the BLM; CO2 EOR operations provide a responsible method of utilizing CO2, including underground storage of otherwise emitted sources of CO2 into the atmosphere. Because of the enhanced recovery capability of this method, there is also the benefit of less wasted oil reserves; those which would remain trapped without a source of recovery.
The Montana Petroleum Association is a non-profit trade association representing the nearly two hundred businesses which work to facilitate energy production in Montana. These include integrated and independent producers; lease operators; service providers; pipeline companies; refineries; as well as professional entities providing legal, financial, and additional regulatory support to the oil and natural gas industry.
Montana State Represenative, Derek Skees & The Montana Constitution
US Senate candidate, Ron Murray talks about Infrastructure in Montana and More.
Montana’s roads and bridges need continuous repair. As the 4th largest state, with temperatures ranging from -40 degrees below to over 100 degrees above, with two major Interstates and freight flowing north to south and east to west, our infrastructure takes a beating, and the upkeep takes money. We need to ensure that our highway funds are invested in fiscally sound projects and that budgets and schedules are met. Rules and regulations need to be reviewed and adjusted for efficiency, safety and providing a quality product.
Our world has changed and our communities aren’t the same as what we grew up in. Montanans need to be aware that our neighbor’s to the north have instituted liberal immigration policies that potentially leaves us open to vulnerabilities. Our northern border is an integral part of our national security and must be monitored and protected for our safety and security.
Montana’s official nick-name is the Treasure State, and for good reason! From our incredible landscapes, to the rich ground producing some of the best grains and livestock in the world, to our oil, gas and coal deposits and our mineral resources of palladium, platinum, gold, silver, copper and more, we truly live in the Treasure State! We need to focus on responsible natural resource development, with our neighbors and environment in mind, which can be achieved through cooperation between state and federal agencies and private enterprises. We, as Montana citizens, have so much to offer our great state and country. Through good stewardship and innovation, we can better fund our education system to insure our children carry on the Montana Values that we cherish.
Economic growth and stability is critical to keep our state moving forward. Our economic base needs to be broadened to provide more opportunities for entrepreneurs, college graduates, tradesmen and companies and industries looking to relocate or expand.
Per capita, Montanan’s enlist and serve our nation more than any other state in the union. We need strong leadership to make sure our veterans get what they earned and were promised. We need a healthy economic environment to offer employment and business opportunities for our veterans upon return from their enlistments.
Kathleen Williams, a three-term Democratic state lawmaker from Bozeman, has announced her candidacy for Montana‘s lone U.S. House seat.
Williams said in a statement Thursday that the political polarization in Congress is bad for the country and she would work with diverse interests to get things done.
In the state House of Representatives she helped shepherd through a water compact between the state and the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes.
Williams is a former Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks employee and now works for the conservation group Western Landowners Alliance.
She joins a Democratic field that includes Billings attorney John Heenan, former land-trust director Grant Kier and state Rep. Tom Woods of Bozeman. They are seeking to challenge Republican U.S. Rep. Greg Gianforte.
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Voices of Montana is MT's only statewide, daily, radio talk show. The show is a platform for Montanans to share their opinions on issues that matter to MT.
Paul and Laura Heaton’s son Grant is five years old and was diagnosed with Duchenne Musecular Dystrophy at the age of three. The Worden Montana family is asking for help from sellers of cattle. Please bring in a calf yearling cow or whatever you can to Billings Livestock for a special sale September 19th. Debra […]