Daily Archives: January 30, 2012

Treaty Energy finds oil in Belize

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Treaty Energy Corporation has said it has encountered oil with its first well at the Princess Concession in Belize.

Bill Lehane  30 January 2012 12:17 GMT

The New Orleans and Houston-based player said the San Juan 2 well would be completed and put into production in the wake of the find at the Stann Creek field, which Treaty estimates could contain up to six million barrels of recoverable oil.

Co-chief executive Andrew Reid said the San Juan 2 would be produced at this first pay zone, adding: “It is our plan to drill San Juan 1 deeper than San Juan 2 in the belief that there may be additional pay zones present.”

Initial examinations of cuttings show “lime characteristics with good porosity and high saturation”, Treaty said, adding the charactertisics appeared similar to oil producing lime plays in Texas.

“These plays have produced hundreds of millions of barrels of oil over the past century and have been the source of many of the great Texas success stories”, the company commented on Monday.

Drilling had begun on 24 January at the well near Independence Village, adjacent to the Port of Big Creek in the Stann Creek District.

Treaty detected hydrocarbons in the form of a gas register when it reached 1235 feet on Friday.

“This presence of C1-C4 gas readings indicated a geo-pressurized oil bearing zone/gas driven”, the player said. “As drilling continued the indicator steadily increased from the depth of 1235 ft with readings being taken at one-foot intervals.”

Consultants from Advance Geological Services said oil was present in the cuttings samples, and continued drilling showed a constant increase in hydrocarbon presence in the formation down to 1290 feet, after which there was a steady decline.

Treaty holds 200,000 onshore acres within the Princess Concession, where it believes there could be three oil-bearing fields of various sizes, as well as 1.4 million acres on the Paradise Concession.

Treaty is an international acquisition, development and production company focused on leases that are considered to have proven but undeveloped reserves.

Published: 30 January 2012 12:17 GMT  | Last updated: 30 January 2012 13:34 GMT

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Natural gas sector set up by Obama to be sabotaged?

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Industry insiders fear rules, taxes

By Ben Wolfgang

The Washington Times

President Obama spoke of the role natural gas must play in America’s energy future during his State of the Union address last week, but industry insiders fear it’s merely lip service designed to distract from what they consider the administration’s behind-the-scenes plan to sabotage the sector.

“They’re trying to make it more difficult for the industry to survive while the president is standing in front of the country saying we’re going to create jobs through hydraulic fracturing,” said Ken von Schaumburg, former deputy counsel at the Environmental Protection Agency during the Bush administration.

Mr. Obama “is talking the game, but you can’t support the industry and then have this aggressive rule-making process going on,” Mr. von Schaumburg said.

At the same time the president boasts of the nation’s vast shale gas deposits, his EPA is poised to make extracting that fuel much more difficult. The agency will this year release a widely anticipated study on hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” the use of water, sand and chemical mixtures to crack underground rock and release huge quantities of gas. The practice is widely used in Pennsylvania, North Dakota and other states, and has helped revitalize small-town economies and led directly to the creation of thousands of jobs in recent years.

Many in the gas industry fear that the upcoming EPA study will call for harsh new regulations on the process, and many environmental groups – a key constituency for Mr. Obama during this year’s re-election bid – are publicly pushing the administration to outlaw fracking entirely.

The EPA has already dealt a severe blow to fracking with the release of a report last year alleging the process was responsible for water contamination in Pavillion, Wyo. That study was met with ridicule from across the natural gas business because it was put out before being subjected to an independent, third-party review. While the EPA has promised such an unbiased look will be conducted, the study has likely already had a negative impact on the public perception of fracking.

Possibly making matters worse, Mr. Obama has over the past week repeated his calls for increased federal investment in the renewable energy sector, a policy some view as an effort to stack the deck against natural gas.

“Job creators and American consumers should welcome the president’s latest energy promises with suspicion,” Thomas Pyle, president of the nonprofit Institute for Energy Research, said in a statement following Mr. Obama’s State of the Union speech, during which he called for an “all-of-the-above” approach toward energy independence that relies heavily on American oil and gas reserves.

“In the same breath that he extolled the virtues of natural gas development and called for higher energy taxes on the companies that produce it, President Obama continues to press for more taxpayer subsidies for Solyndra-style green energy companies,” Mr. Pyle said.

Mr. Obama’s positive rhetoric toward natural gas could also represent a desire to please both sides of the debate, though the move to the middle has, thus far, seemed to satisfy no one. After the speech, environmental groups blasted the administration for being too timid and called for an all-out war on fracking.

“We can’t wait much longer for the clean energy revolution. We need to clean up a fossil fuel industry run amok, by ensuring … natural gas safeguards that go much further than what the president suggested,” Sierra Club Executive Director Michael Brune said in a statement after the State of the Union address.

So far, however, the administration has stopped far short of what the Sierra Club and other liberal groups want to see. Mr. Obama did, however, call for legislation requiring any company drilling on public land to disclose all chemicals used during the fracking process. Several states, such as Texas and Colorado, have already passed disclosure bills, and many leading companies voluntarily post detailed breakdowns of their chemical mixtures to the website fracfocus.org, an online clearinghouse.

Potential state or federal regulations aren’t they only problems confronting the gas industry. The explosion of natural gas extraction in areas like the Marcellus Shale region has glutted the market, keeping prices low for consumers but leading to diminished returns for drilling companies.

Last week, Chesapeake Energy, one of the largest players in the game, announced plans to reduce daily gas production by 500 million cubic feet, an 8 percent drop. The firm said it’s considering slashing production even further and predicts “flat or lower total natural gas production in the U.S. in 2012” as supply outstrips demand.

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USA: Cheniere, KOGAS Ink Sabine Pass LNG Deal

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Cheniere Energy Partners, L.P. said today that its subsidiary, Sabine Pass Liquefaction, LLC, has entered into a LNG sale and purchase agreement (SPA) with Korea Gas Corporation (KOGAS) under which KOGAS has agreed to purchase approximately 3.5 mtpa of LNG upon the commencement of train three operations.

Under the SPA, KOGAS will purchase LNG on an FOB basis for a purchase price indexed to the monthly Henry Hub price plus a fixed component. LNG will be loaded onto KOGAS’s vessels. The SPA has a term of twenty years commencing upon the date of first commercial delivery for train three, and an extension option of up to ten years.  Deliveries from train three are expected to occur as early as 2017.  The SPA is subject to certain conditions precedent, including but not limited to Sabine Liquefaction receiving regulatory approvals, securing necessary financing arrangements and making a final investment decision to construct the second phase of the liquefaction project.

KOGAS is our fourth foundation customer and we have now sold 16 mtpa of the 18 mtpa being developed at the Sabine Pass LNG terminal.  KOGAS is a strong addition to our portfolio of customers as it is the largest LNG importer in the world and the dominant gas provider for the Republic of Korea, a nation that is soon to become a Free Trade Nation with the U.S.” said Charif Souki, Chairman and CEO.We look forward to finalizing all necessary steps in order to begin construction of the first phase of our project early this year and more importantly, to becoming the first LNG exporter in the Continental U.S.

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