Fuelfix is moving. Here are the details.

Fuel Fix, the Houston Chronicle’s must-read source for energy industry news and analysis, is moving to chron.com, the Chronicle’s free site. Typing FuelFix.com should redirect you to the new site, which will host the same quality content you’ve come to expect. If you are not automatically redirected, you can click here to go to chron.com/business/energy. The transition …

Think before you sue: Tips for resolving oil and gas disputes

By Kathy Silver Doing business means inevitable disputes, and the oil and gas business sees plenty of these – no matter what the price of oil. Most trial lawyers love a good courtroom battle. But their clients would rather focus on business. So why isn’t there more serious effort toward early resolution of disputes in …

Crude inventories dive again

Crude oil inventories again fell significantly, draining U.S. stockpiles by more than 10 million barrels over the past two weeks, the Energy Department reported Wednesday. RELATED: The nation’s crude oil glut continues to shrink Commercial crude inventories fell 6.4 million barrels last week, following a 4 million barrel decline the previous week. Gasoline inventories fell by …

Average gasoline price in Houston slips again

Average gasoline prices in the Houston area fell 2 cents a gallon over the last week, the website GasBuddy reported. Prices slipped to an average of $2.17 a gallon on Sunday, down 11 cents from a month ago, but up 15 cents from the same day a year earlier, said GasBuddy, which tracks gasoline prices …

Commentary: Offshore sector not dead yet

By Julie Wilson News of the demise of the offshore industry may be premature. Production from offshore continues to rise: it’s 12 percent  higher than it was six years ago, and will be 10 percent  higher again in another six years, reaching over 503 million barrels of oil equivalent per day of oil and gas …

Gasoline prices slide as demand, crude weakens

Average gasoline prices fell nearly 4 cents a gallon in Greater Houston over the past week, a surprising decline at a time of the year when prices rises, according to GasBuddy.com, a website that tracks gas prices and refining actitiviy. Locally, prices average $2.21 cents  a gallon, Gas Buddy. Nationally, prices also fell about 4 …

Landlocked Oklahoma wants a piece of Mexico’s offshore industry

By Lydia DePillis Not every middle-of-the-country state can be a player in Mexico’s developing offshore oil industry, but if anyone has a chance, it’s Oklahoma.  The landlocked state has a native oil industry and a number of companies with expertise in onshore technology that can be transferred to deep waters. It even has an inland …

OTC Commentary: How digital technology is transforming oil

By Ahmed Hashmi Fourteen years ago, at its 2003 annual energy conference here in Houston, Cambridge Energy Research Associates (CERA) presented a bold vision of how digital technology might transform the world of oil and gas production. “The industry,” it declared, “is standing on the crest of the digital oil field of the future, which …

OTC Commentary: Collaboration could help deepwater stay competitive

By Stephen P. Thurston As thousands of people descend on Houston next week for the Offshore Technology Conference 2017, one of the questions on their minds will be: Can complex, deepwater projects compete for capital in a world where shale offers lower development costs and shorter production cycles? The answer is yes. Even in these times …

OTC Commentary: Big data comes to deepwater drilling

By Matthew Franchek An unexpected equipment failure can affect offshore producers much the way an unexpected closure of Interstate 10 affects Houston drivers. Everything comes to a stop. For drivers, that means lost time. For offshore operators, lost time means less money to the bottom line. That’s bad news for companies and their shareholders as …

OTC Commentary: Expanding offshore access is critical for energy security

By Erik Milito Last week marked the 100-day milestone for the Trump administration, and the White House is making steady progress on pledges to remove roadblocks to oil and natural gas development. At the heart of executive orders aimed at scaling back regulatory overreach, expanding offshore access and cutting through red tape on pipeline construction …

OTC commentary: Improving offshore economics

By Jeremy Thigpen As the offshore energy industry navigates the most severe downturn in decades, we are encouraged by the collaborative and innovative approaches we have witnessed to improve the economics of deepwater and ultra-deepwater drilling and production. Beyond the traditional push for lower product and service costs, our customers are actively engaging and challenging …

Models star at OTC

By Lydia DePillis There’s no kit manual for making an eight-foot long scale model of an oil tanker. Exploration companies don’t send instructions for how to re-create their ever-more-sophisticated inventions in miniature. That’s up to John Richard. With dexterity that belies his thick, large muscular hands, Richard constructs a wire circuit that will illuminate tiny …

OTC Commentary: Integration and collaboration in the forefront of drilling success

By Murat Aksoy For years, the industry has applied discrete drilling technologies and depending on enhancements of these to improve performance. While this has produced notable technical advancements, the logical next step is to fully integrate the well construction process by adopting a holistic, consistent, and collaborative approach to managing the entire drilling system. The …

OTC Commentary: Digital disruption in oil and gas: Are we there yet?

By Archana Deskus We hear a lot of talk these days about digital disruption. What does that mean for the oil and gas industry and the way we deliver energy to those who need it? “Digital disruption” is the transformation that occurs when digital technologies radically change the way companies operate, sometimes dismantling old business …

Gas prices slip as supplies grow

Gasoline prices in Greater Houston fell about two cents a gallon over the past week as plentiful supplies come into the market, according to GasBuddy.com, a website that tracks gas prices and refining activity. Gasoline average $2.25 a gallon in Houston Sunday, down from about $2.27 a week earlier, according to GasBuddy. Despite the dip, …

Commentary: Setting the record straight on West Ranch water

By Ed Longanecker From time to time, news outlets produce stories and headlines that lack the critical details that would otherwise allow their readers to have the full context, and thus a much better understanding, of a particular story. Now, the majority of the time this is not done intentionally or out of malice, but …

Commentary: Opportunity knocks in Moldova

By Steve C. Nicandros For years, conventional wisdom has warned against investing in places betwixt and between – countries that offer uncertainty, that face geopolitical challenges, that aren’t prepared for Western-style business. Moldova, one of the poorest and smallest countries in Europe, was considered such a place. Yet, in March, Frontera Resources Corporation signed a …

Rig count keeps growing

Energy companies sent 10 more rigs to U.S. oil and gas fields this week, continuing the steady increase in drilling activity. Texas accounted for six of the new  rigs, including one in West Texas’s Permian Basin and three in the Eagle Ford in South Texas, according to the Houston energy services company Baker Hughes. The …

Crude stockpiles fall again

Oil and gasoline stockpiles fell for the second consecutive week, a sign that the energy industry finally may be working through its stubborn supply glut. Commercial crude inventories declined by 1 million barrels last week, after falling 2.2 million barrels the previous week, the Energy Department reported Wednesday. Gasoline stocks fell by 1.5 million barrels, …

Commentary: Activists distort events to thwart offshore development

By Randall Luthi Companies that work in any offshore industry understand the seriousness of their work and take extra precautions whenever possible to preserve the waters they do business in. That’s why it’s frustrating when environmental activist groups attempt to mislead the general public about offshore industries and the important business they do. It has …

CERAWeek Day 5: What to look for

CERAWeek by IHS Markit wraps up Friday with a focus on policy and the future. Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, the number two Republican in the Senate, and Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, chairman of the Energy and Natural Resources Committee, discuss where energy policy is going under President Donald Trump and Republican-controlled Congress. The future of …

Commentary: Embracing digital labor in oil and gas

By Rachel Everaard What do we mean when we talk about digital labor? Forget robots and androids. Digital labor refers to the use of sophisticated software to manage repetitive, high-volume tasks across an enterprise — a transformation that has the potential to add significant value in the oil and gas sector. Leading oil and gas …

Commentary: An important new electricity source for Texas

  Texas has a mixed bag of fuels to generate the state’s electricity.  This includes natural gas (55 perent), coal/lignite (24 percent), wind (14 percent), nuclear (6 percent), and solar (1 percent). But this mix will keep changing since Houston and some other Texas cities are  “nonattainment” areas regarding air quality.  So, carbon emissions will …

CERAWeek Day 4: What to look for

Scott Pruitt, the recently confirmed administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau headline  Thursday’s proceedings at CERAWeek by IHS Markit, which will focus on power. Pruitt, who spent much of his career as Oklahoma attorney general suing the federal government over environmental rules, will speak during the program at lunch; …

CERAWeek Day Three: What to look for

CERAWeek by IHS Markit on Wednesday focuses on natural gas, globalization and emerging global markets for natural gas. The conference will take on push to retreat behind national borders in a panel, “Whatever happened to globalization? Among the speakers feature are Patrick Pouyanné, the chief executive of the French oil major Total; Charif Souki, the pioneer …

CERAWeek Day Two: What to look for

Oil is the focus today at CERAWeek, headlined by Saudi Arabia’s oil minister Khalid al-Falih. With crude prices stuck between $50 and $55 a barrel, the question remains whether OPEC will extend its agreement to cut output later this year, and what impact Falih’s comments will have on prices. The conference will also hear from …

Gas prices unchanged in Houston area

Houston area gasoline prices were unchanged over the past week as the national average rose, according to the website GasBuddy.com. Prices at the pump average $2.07 a gallon in Greater Houston, said GasBuddy, which tracks gasoline prices and refining activity. Nationally, the average price of gasoline rose about 2 cents to $2.31 a gallon. Local …

CERAWeek Day One: What to look for

CERAWeek kicks off Monday with the future of the oil markets front and center as prices stabilize between $50 and $55 a barrel after plunging to $26 a barrel just over a year ago. An agreement by OPEC and major oil producers such as Russia to cut output by some 1.8 million barrels a day …

Commentary: Better times ahead for energy industry

By Edward L. Monser When the world’s energy industry leaders meet here next weeat their annual CERAWeek confab, the price of oil will surely be front and center in most conversations. It usually is. Just behind, however, will be the industry’s inexorable tectonic shifts – toward natural gas and renewables, and away from coal. Nowhere …

730-mile Epic Permian-to-Corpus pipeline in the works

By Rye Druzin A trio of companies hope to build a 730-mile-long crude oil and condensate pipeline from West Texas to Corpus Christi. The so-called Epic pipeline would have a maximum capacity of 440,000 barrels per day of crude oil and condensates, a form of ultralight crude oil. The pipeline would take crude from points …

Commentary: Administration should support LNG development

By Charlie Riedl As Congress works to finish confirmation of key members of President Trump’s cabinet, it’s worth noting that one important issue has so far largely passed with relatively little exploration; the question of how much and how quickly the new Administration will allow natural gas to be shipped overseas. In one sense the …

Enbridge, Spectra to close on merger next week

The Canadian pipeline company Enbridge said Wednesday that it close its acquisition of Houston-based Spectra Energy next week after clearing all regulatory hurdles. Enbridge said it received approval of Canadian Competition Bureau and will complete the $28 billion merger Monday. The merger was earlier approved the Federal Trade Commission in the United States. In the merged …

Apache Corp. narrows loss

Apache Corp. on Thursday said it narrowed its losses in the fourth quarter, ending a year that was significantly better than 2016 and included a major discovery in West Texas. The Houston exploration and production company said it aggressively cut costs while meeting production targets, shrinking its loss for the three months ending in December to …

Royalties, taxes paid by Texas drillers plunged in 2016

By Lydia DePillis Texas’ top oil and gas association said Tuesday that taxes and royalties paid to state and local government fell significantly in the last fiscal year, reflecting the plunge in oil prices and decline in drilling activity during that period. Oil and natural gas producers generated a total of $9.7 billion in revenues …

Gas prices fall again; enjoy it while you can

Average gasoline prices in Houston continued their slide, falling another penny over the past week to $2.07 a gallon, according to GasBuddy.com, a website that tracks gas prices and refining activity. Local gas prices are down 6 cents a gallon from a month ago, but up 56 cents from a year ago as crude prices …

Gasoline prices fall in Houston area

Gasoline prices fell in the Houston area again as growing inventories temper the rise in oil prices, according to GasBuddy.com, a website that tracks gas prices and refining activity. The average price of gas in Greater Houston fell nearly 2 cents a gallon over the past week, slipping to $2.07 Sunday, GasBuddy said. Nationally, the …

Valero Energy Partners beats Wall Street expectations

By Rye Druzin, San Antonio Express-News San Antonio-based Valero Energy Partners beat Wall Street expectations with earnings of $60 million, or 77 cents a share, compared with Wall Street expectations of earnings around 70 cents a share. Valero Energy Corp. formed Valero Energy Partners in 2013 as a master limited partnership to own and operate …

Petroleum supplies rise, demand slips

Stockpiles of U.S. petroleum products rose significantly last week as demand slipped, the Energy Department reported Wednesay. Commercial crude inventories rose by 2.8 barrels, while gasoline stocks jumped by nearly 7 million barrels.  Inventories of all petroleum products rose by 8.9 million barrels. Demand for petroleum products, meanwhile declined. U.S. motorists consumed about 8.3 million …

Gasoline prices rise again

Gasoline prices continued to climb in Houston and across the nation, following crude oils rise in commodity markets. Average gasoline prices in the Houston area rose 1.1 cents a gallon this week to $2.13 a gallon, following a 6 cents increase the previous week, according to GasBuddy.com, which tracks gasoline prices across the nation. Prices …

Gas prices in Houston rise again

Average gasoline prices in Houston rose another three cents over the leak, following the steady climb in crude oil prices, according to the website GasBuddy. com, Gasoline averaged $2.05 cents in the Houston area Tuesday, up from $2.02 a week ago, according to GasBuddy, which tracks gas prices and refining activity. Gas prices are up …

Crude inventories shrink

U.S. crude oil stockpiles fell for the second consecutive week, adding support to prices that surged on reports that OPEC nations had agreed to cut production. Commercial inventories of crude fell about 900,000 barrels last week, after declining by about 1.3 million barrels the previous week, according to the Energy Department. Gasoline inventories, however, climbed …

Texas jury awards Boone Pickens $146 million in West Texas oil lawsuit

By Natalie Posgate of The Texas Lawbook  PECOS  –Two Midland-based oil companies and Dallas-based J. Cleo Thompson intentionally failed to meet their end of a 2007 agreement with Dallas oil mogul T. Boone Pickens to acquire and drill more than 160 oil wells in Reeves and Pecos counties, a West Texas jury ruled Wednesday. After about …

Commentary: Arctic energy could boost maritime industry

By Matthew Paxton Wit all of the amazing innovation going into transportation these days, those unaware might not envisage that such a historic trade as shipbuilding has a place. But in fact, the U.S. shipbuilding and repair industry continues to support more than 500,000 jobs nationwide and contributes over $39 billion annually to the U.S. …

Commentary: Seismic surveys play significant role in offshore drilling

By Andy Radford A decisive majority of American voters – 80 percent – support increased production of U.S. oil and natural gas, including 94 percent of Republicans, 76 percent of Independents and 71 percent of Democrats. Voters associate energy production with job creation, economic growth, energy security and lower energy costs, polling also shows. And …

Guest Columnist: Energy policy under President Trump: How much change is possible?

By Jim Krane For the US energy sector, a Trump presidency portends less regulation for fossil fuels and a retreat from reducing carbon emissions to fight climate change. Trump’s big campaign promises, however, were short on policy insights and his selection of energy advisers remains unknown. Trump’s statements promoting domestic energy are a perennial theme …

Commentary: The new energy company

By Reid Morrison The U.S. oil and gas industry has experienced a sea change as it navigates an unpleasant shift in commodity prices since the highs of 2014. And as the industry muscles through a slow recovery, exploration and production, oilfield services, and drilling companies  are finding they have stressed balanced sheets, income statements, and …

Profit surges for Valero’s pipeline subsidiary

By Rye Druzin, San Antonio Express-News Valero Energy Partners’ third-quarter profit surged 65.6 percent, exceeding Wall Street expectations. “We successfully integrated the operations of the Meraux and Three Rivers terminals into our system and remain on track to grow distributions at a target annual rate of 25 percent through 2017,” said Chairman and Chief Executive …