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Energy / Natural Gas

  • AGL Resources (GAS) is A Risk Worth Taking

    When the price of oil was in freefall it understandably captured a lot of attention. The same fate befalling natural gas, however, was of less interest to most media outlets. In many ways that is understandable; the price of natural gas has a much less direct effect on the vast majority of consumers than that of oil, so stories about it don’t drive ratings. The fact is, though, that the decline in natural gas prices was, if anything, more spectacular.When oil was in full decline from September to December of last year natural gas prices held up pretty well, supported…

  • An Unlikely Winner Of The Ukraine-Gazprom Row

    With the help of Ukrainian tycoon Dmitry Firtash, Turkmenistan,that unsung gas giant that boasts the world’s fourth largest reserves, could very be the clincher in securing Ukraine’s energy security. During a meeting with Turkmen Deputy Prime Minister Rashid Meredov on March 27, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko sent a shot across the bow to Moscow by expressing his desire to resume Turkmen gas imports as an alternative source to Gazprom’s dominance. Poroshenko essentially hinted at a nifty gas deal sealed back in 2006 by Dmitry Firtash’s RosUkrEnergo (RUE), whereby Ukraine imported 40 billion cubic meters of gas from Turkmenistan and Kazakhstan…

  • Exxon Urges U.S Congress To Soften LNG Export Laws

    Exxon Mobil Corp. says the United States may be a big loser in both energy and trade if it doesn’t open up the export of liquid natural gas (LNG). “If policymakers don’t revisit and redress some significant legal and regulatory problems … then the U.S. could be left behind during one of the great historic developments in global energy and trade,” Rob Franklin, president of Exxon Mobil’s Gas & Power Marketing Co., told the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies in Washington. Franklin said Congress should repeal the law requiring a public-interest determination for exporting LNG to countries with…

  • EU Could End Russian Gas Bullying In One Fell Swoop

    A regulator with the European Commission could alter Europe’s long-term energy security this week. Europe’s competition commissioner is set to formally file charges against Russia’s Gazprom on April 22 for violating anti-trust laws. The case has been several years in the making, one that went on hold after Russia’s intervention in Ukraine last year. The EU’s top anti-trust regulator Margrethe Vestager will charge Gazprom with limiting competition in Europe’s energy markets. One complaint is that in bilateral deals with several eastern European countries, Gazprom allegedly links natural gas prices with cooperation on other areas of political significance. If a certain…

  • Ukraine Turning Its Back On Gazprom

    Quantitative indicators show a dramatic reorientation of Ukraine’s natural gas supply strategy. Dependence on Gazprom has become a thing of the past. Kyiv is demonstrating political resolve to pursue supply diversification and adapt to changing market conditions with the European Commission’s backing. Along with supply diversification, Ukraine’s business practices in the gas trade with Russia are also changing momentously. For the first time in independent Ukraine, the current political leaders have no corporate or personal interest in the gas business, nor do they depend on interest groups linked to the energy sector. Related: Media Spin On Oil Prices Running Out Of…

  • Why Cheap Natural Gas Could Be Here To Stay

    While everyone is watching oil prices bounce around at low levels, natural gas prices are also at their lowest levels in years.   Crude oil is filling up in storage tanks around the country, but natural gas follows more of a seasonal pattern. Between the warmer months of April through October, natural gas producers build up inventories. Then in the colder months, U.S. businesses and consumers burn through some of that storage to keep warm. Related: Top 12 Media Myths On Oil Prices With the winter behind us, peak demand is over for the year. And compared to the harsh winter…

  • Shell Betting Its Future On LNG

    Could the largest energy deal in over a decade begin a new wave of mergers and acquisitions? Is LNG really the future? How Will ExxonMobil Respond? And perhaps more importantly, does the mega-deal between Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A) and BG Group (LON: BG) portend the end of the bear market for oil? Shell announced on April 8 that it agreed to buy BG Group for an eye-popping $70 billion. The move was surprising, in the sense that a lot of companies in recent years have reined in their spending on high-cost projects outside of North America. Shell, in the midst…

  • Another Major Player Just Signed Onto Mexican Natgas Exports

    That's ONEOK Partners. Specialist operator of a 36,000-mile pipeline network for natural gas and liquids across the southern U.S. This week, ONEOK said it has struck a joint-venture deal to add one more pipeline project to its portfolio -- a 200-mile line to carry natural gas from the Permian Basin of Texas to the Mexican border.Related: Why The Oil Price Collapse Is U.S. Shale’s Fault The pipeline is being advanced in partnership with Mexican midstream operator Fermaca Infrastructure. Owner of the Tarahumara gas pipeline, which spans northern Mexico to the border crossing near the town of San Elizario, Texas. The planned…

  • North American LNG Export Dream Evaporating

    The rush to export natural gas from North America was nice while it lasted. But the spot prices for liquefied natural gas (LNG) in Asia have collapsed, leaving a shrinking opportunity on the table for the plethora of export proposals. Much of that has to do with oil prices falling by half over the past year because LNG prices are linked to the price of oil in much of the world. The latest data from Platts shows that the Japan/Korea Marker (JKM) – the benchmark for LNG in northeast Asia – fell to just $7.279 per million Btu (MMBtu) for…

  • Gazprom Feeling The Heat From Sanctions And Low Energy Prices

    Cracks are widening in Russia’s flagship natural gas producer Gazprom. The state-owned gas company has suffered mightily under the weight of western sanctions and the fall in energy prices. And the results are beginning to show. Gazprom announced that its net income plummeted by 70 percent in 2014, which will result in a cut in its dividend. Those numbers represent the cumulative blow from a bad year for Gazprom in 2014. The company’s troubles went beyond low oil prices and sanctions. Due in part to the conflict in Ukraine, Europe has shown renewed resolve to break Russia’s energy grip, with…