- Saudi Arabia vs. West Texas. Saudi Arabia’s Ghawar oil field, discovered in 1948, is the largest oil field in the world, currently producing 5 million barrels of oil per day. However, the Permian oil basin of West Texas is capable of producing 8 - 10 million bpd in oil, gas and liquids. The "sweet" spot for the Ghawar is about $100/barrel; the ideal price for the Permian is about $70 to $75/barrel. When oil prices rise to the $70 range, the Permian will take over as the largest oil play in the world.
- "February 24, 2017" is now a historic date in the US natural gas market. For the first time ever, natural gas storage levels rose during a winter week. (Note: temperatures throughout much of the US have been higher than normal this winter, and natural gas storage is particularly sensitive to fluctuations in weather - natural gas is consumed directly by furnaces and boilers in homes and businesses for heating, and natural gas is used to generate electricity, which then fuels electric heat pumps and radiant heaters.)
- A cautionary note about a respected peer-reviewed article in an academic journal... (AES Members have access to the article.) Researchers reported that on average, there are about 5 leaks and spills for every 100 hydraulically fractured wells each year. The study went on to say that North Dakota had the highest rate of accidents while Colorado companies reported just 11 accidents per 1,000 wells annually. However, the evidence is unreliable - the total number of accidents is unknown, and there is no reliable state trend. For instance, North Dakota requires operators to report spills of 42 gallons or more, while Colorado and New Mexico do not ask for anything smaller than 210 gallons, and Texas - the nation's top oil and gas producing state - was not included in the study because detailed data was not available.
- The US typically imports more than it exports, but that is not the case with coal. In 2016, the US exported 41 million tons of metallurgical coal and 18 million tons of thermal coal - and imported only about 10 million tons. Exports are and have been a lifeline for many coal companies in the last few years. With the newly rewritten NAFTA and TPP trade deals, the US cannot export coal to large Asian markets like Vietnam and Japan; so, Australian and Canadian coal companies will benefit.
- Nuclear power does better under state ownership than it does under market-driven forces, and the collapse of the Toshiba-Westinghouse nuclear construction deal is further evidence. Nuclear power in Eastern Europe, Asia and the Middle East benefits from state-ownership. Furthermore, in the US, only the Tennessee Valley Authority, itself a government corporation, has been able to bring a new nuclear reactor into operation in the last 20 years.