Plans call for development to begin in 2013. Each plant will produce between 7,500 to 40,000 Diesel Gallons Equivalent (DGE) per day of capacity, subject to current and future contractual commitments. According to Joseph Farley, Director of Business Development, “We see a need for LNG and CNG as another important supply fuel to the Oil & Gas industry and service providers. Producers and Suppliers of Oil & Gas are looking for ways to cut their fuel cost and by switching to Natural Gas for their rigs, frac units and fleets they can save millions of dollars each year.
“AmericaCNG.Com,Inc along with their Strategic Alliance Partners(SAP) can convert the trucks, the frac units and the drilling rigs to run off CNG. Thigpen Energy, one of our SAP, is a field service company that specializes in the installation and operation of natural gas fueling infrastructure, be it CNG, LNG or field gas.
“Gas safety equipment, crew safety training and fuel reconciliation are all part of the Thigpen Energy solution. By utilizing our LNG processing, storage and transportation capabilities we will be able to wholesale the fuel, plus transport the fuel to each well site, regasify it back to CNG, and sell it to drillers, suppliers, service companies and converted vehicles…”
“We have the capability to turn around a project in about 180 days for the smaller units out in the field.”
Another SAP is Alternative Gas Processing Inc.. They supply wellhead gas processing equipment for methane and NGL’s, portable LNG fuel skids, and LNG and CNG transportation modules. Methane and NGL recovery at the well head can be accomplished with no out of pocket expense to the producer in specific targeted areas.
The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) said in a report that the U.S. dry natural gas production has increased since late 2005 due mainly to rapid growth in production from shale gas resources. However, there have been two notable instances (see red ovals in the chart) in the last seven years when natural gas production leveled off during a period of falling spot natural gas prices.
The first was during the recent economic recession and the latest began in the fourth quarter of 2011 and continued through the first quarter of 2012.
Weather events (see green ovals) have also affected U.S. natural gas production.
The major events over the past seven years that have caused dry gas output to level off or even decline include:
- Hurricanes Katrina and Rita (Sep-Oct 2005) – Disrupted up to 12.2 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) in offshore natural gas production.
- Hurricanes Gustav and Ike (Sep 2008) – Disrupted up to 9.5 Bcf/d in offshore natural gas production.
- Economic recession and falling prices (Oct 2008- Sep 2009) – Reduced industrial and manufacturing activity, and lower electricity use eased demand for natural gas as a feedstock and a power generation fuel. Natural gas prices fell sharply as a result.
- Winter well freeze-offs (Feb 2011) – Disrupted up to 7.5 Bcf/d in natural gas production from Texas to Arizona, when water froze inside wellheads during extremely cold weather and blocked gas flows.
- Supply overhang and falling natural gas prices (Oct 2011-Mar 2012) – A warm winter that reduced heating fuel demand and record high gas inventories resulted in a nearly 50% drop in gas prices, causing some energy companies to postpone new drilling and cut back on some existing operations.
Natural gas production was relatively flat between October 2011 and March 2012, when Henry Hub spot gas prices declined from just above $3.50 to around $2.00 per million British thermal units in March. Preliminary EIA data indicate a slight drop in production during March, according to the Natural Gas Monthly report released on May 31.
Of the five large gas-producing states tracked monthly by EIA—Texas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Wyoming—New Mexico had the highest percentage decline in its March gross natural gas production, down 2.2 percent from the previous month, while Texas had the largest volumetric drop, down 150 million cubic feet per day. States that EIA does not presently track on a monthly basis, such as Pennsylvania, may have seen their gas output increase during March.
- EIA: U.S. Surpassed Russia in Dry Gas Production in 2009 and 2010 (mb50.wordpress.com)
- Natural gas boosted by short covering (business.financialpost.com)
- Natural gas: What are the bulls thinking? (business.financialpost.com)
Robert Drummond, president of Schlumberger North America, (left) talks about his company as Jeremy Aumaugher, south division operations manager, listens to questions about expansion of their business to support clients in the Eagle Ford Shale.
Photo: TOM REEL, San Antonio Express-News / San Antonio Express-NewsBy Vicki Vaughan Updated 12:26 p.m., Thursday, March 8, 2012
Schlumberger, the world’s largest oil-field services company, threw open the doors Wednesday to its new operations plant in southern Bexar County, where it was drawn by proximity to the Eagle Ford Shale.
“This is a big deal for us,” Robert Drummond, president of Schlumberger North America, said as he stood before shiny trucks in a spic-and-span warehouse that’s part of a $19 million investment.
The new facility is a critical addition to Schlumberger’s south division operations, which encompasses the New Mexico, West Texas and South Texas, he said.
Construction of the company facilities, which occupy three sites on Fischer Road near the intersection of Interstate 35 South and Loop 410, began in December 2010, company officials said.
Schlumberger — which is based in Houston, Paris and The Hague, Netherlands — employs almost 400 in the San Antonio area, a total that is likely to grow to 500 employees in the coming months, officials said.
San Antonio’s nearness to the shale has meant that the company hasn’t had a problem recruiting employees, whose work ethic “is excellent,” Drummond said.
The South Bexar facility employs managers, engineers, health and safety employees, equipment operators, maintenance and electronic technicians, and laboratory workers.
Salaries at the operations center range from $25,000 to $85,000 a year, said Jeremy Aumaugher, south division operations manager for pressure pumping. Employees also are eligible for performance bonuses, he said.
However, some employees may work 60 hours a week or more and be away from home for periods of time, Aumaugher said.
The company’s biggest labor needs are for truck drivers, while mechanics and electronic technicians make up another key category, he said.
“We’re in competition, obviously, with others who do the same work as us,” Drummond said. “We want to be the employer of choice in North America, meaning not only (in) compensation but work conditions, facilities and safety environment.”
Schlumberger’s center will handle its customers’ demands for pressure pumping, which is used to enhance the flow of oil and natural gas in hydraulic fracturing. It also will provide cementing services, a process used to surround a well’s casing, or pipe.
Schlumberger’s operations occupy 60 acres. One facility occupies a 35-acre site that includes bays for maintaining, fueling and washing trucks. There’s a 15-acre bulk plant capable of storing 20 million pounds of sand for use in hydraulic fracturing, a cement blending area, a 39,028-square-foot warehouse, a laboratory and a support and training facility on 10 acres.
At a ceremony Wednesday at Schlumberger, Economic Development Foundation Chairman Henry Cisneros said: “This is a great, global company doing important work. The more you can succeed here, it is ‘mission accomplished’ for us.”
As drilling in the Eagle Ford Shale has exploded, a number of oil-field services companies have established a presence in the region, including Houston-based Halliburton Co. and Baker Hughes Inc., Switzerland-based Weatherford International Inc. and Canada-based Sanjel.
In addition, a number of oil production companies drilling in the Eagle Ford Shale have opened offices in San Antonio.
- Eagle Ford construction is booming – San Antonio Express-News (wpvins.wordpress.com)