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Effects of low oil prices on US shale production: OPEC calls the tune and shale swings

What happens when Saudi Arabia, the world’s swing producer of oil, rejects its traditional market-balancing role? The job falls to American shale oil producers, which, initial data show, appear to be assuming the Saudi role. Using data collected by the Austin energy analytics firm Drillinginfo, Baker Institute energy fellow Jim Krane and energy studies graduate…

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Minority of shale facilities in US produce most methane emissions – study

Leaky equipment at a small number of natural gas compressors, processors and pipeline facilities account for a big chunk of the methane escaping into the air, according to the latest reports from a national collaboration between energy companies and the Environmental Defense Fund. Two peer-reviewed studies published Tuesday in Environmental Science & Technology involved researchers…

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UK’s Grangemouth Petrochem plant: no future without local shale gas industry

Scotland’s largest petrochemical plant at Grangemouth is unlikely to have a long-term future unless an indigenous shale gas industry can be developed, according to the firm that owns it. Chemicals giant Ineos proposes using shale gas as a raw material for its chemicals plants and has revealed plans to put millions into exploration. But developing…

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French energy firms join forces to put the case for shale

Several French energy companies have joined forces in an attempt to change perceptions of the shale energy sector in the face of the country’s long-standing ban on hydraulic fracking despite France having to import nearly all its oil and gas. “Shale has become a taboo, it’s become an ideological, almost religious debate,” said Jean-Louis Schilansky,…

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Algeria sticks to shale gas development, unfazed by protests, apparently

Algeria’s state energy company Sonatrach will press ahead with plans to develop shale gas reserves and refuses to yield to protests by local communities and environmental groups, its interim chief executive officer said. The comments are the clearest for a while out of Algeria. Last month Prime Minister Abdelmalek Sellal said Algeria would not begin…

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US shale oil & gas productivity improvements, crude production and Moore’s Law

There have been huge improvements in the US oil and gas industry’s productivity over the last few years.  Things are getting better and better.  In fact that is part of the problem.  Producers have just become too productive for their own good. We’ve seen the consequences of this kind of productivity improvement before, not in…

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