US crude stockpiles gained 2.2 million barrels last week, versus analyst expectations for a 1.1-million-barrel drop, according to the Energy Information Administration. Gasoline supplies also rose by 800,000 barrels, and distillate stocks were down by 2.6 million barrels.
The Oklahoma House of Representatives has voted 51-46 to advance a bill that would change the state's wind energy tax credits by ending incentive payments for the industry beginning in 2019. The full state Senate will review the bill next.
Intel Corp. has returned approximately 80% of its water use to local watersheds and aims to return 100% of its water use by 2025. In addition to its watershed and river basin projects in five states, Intel has saved 3 billion kilowatt-hours of energy since 2012, said Todd Brady, Intel's global public affairs and sustainability director.
US crude exports climbed to a 25-year high of 2.33 million barrels per day last week, bringing the average for this month to 1.76 million barrels per day, according to the Energy Information Administration. Export volumes above 2 million barrels per day should become the new normal this summer as the widening price gap between West Texas Intermediate and Brent spurs demand for US oil.
Analysts expect North American explorers to report modest increases in oil and natural gas production in the first quarter of the year, with the exception of a handful of gas operators, including Gulfport Energy, which boosted gas production during the quarter by 35%. "We do not think companies will pivot to more aggressive programs at this time as E&Ps could be hit by the potential risk of incremental service cost inflation if oil prices hold these levels," said The Williams Capital Group analyst Gabriele Sorbara.
The recent decline in the price of Midland, Texas, crude to three-year lows is expected to give a financial boost to small, independent US refiners such as Delek US Holdings and HollyFrontier, whose facilities are equipped to process light, sweet crude from West Texas. "To have your major feedstock be in such abundant supply is unequivocally a positive for US refining," said Tudor, Pickering, Holt & Co. analyst Matthew Blair.
The Trump administration's tax overhaul may force pipeline companies such as Williams Cos. and Enbridge to refund as much as $18.5 billion of the money they charged to drillers, utilities and United Airlines before the new tax rules took effect. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission will only issue a decision on potential refunds and timing after reviewing comments from the industry.
Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy has won a contract to repower three wind farms owned by a subsidiary of NextEra Energy Resources in Texas. "As a multi-brand service provider, we can enhance the performance of V47 turbines with our cutting-edge solutions by delivering maximum performance and optimal energy output, allowing NextEra Energy Resources to achieve the best possible return on their investment," said Mark Albenze, CEO of Siemens Gamesa's Service Business Unit.
NTR has purchased the 12-turbine, 28-megawatt Aeolus in County Mayo, Ireland, from an undisclosed group of developers and will add it to its NTR Wind 1 fund portfolio, according to the company. "In just over three years, we have acquired 220 MW, with over 160 MW now constructed and producing clean energy," said Chief Investment Officer Manus O'Donnell.
Aeronautical research firm Bihrle Applied Research has spun off its machine learning capabilities to form a new company, Ardenna, that will offer smart drone inspection services for the wind industry and other critical infrastructure, according to the company. "Operations and maintenance organizations have begun looking to drones as a new tool for monitoring the health of their assets," said Business Lead David Patterson.
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