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Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Energy News Roundup

Exploration & Production Spending to Cool Off in 2007
(Rigzone)After two years of massive increases, the pace of oil and gas capital spending growth will slow down in 2007, as U.S. companies temper their North American budgets in the wake of weakening natural gas prices, according to a survey released Monday by Lehman Brothers.
Exploration and production spending will increase by 9% in 2007 to nearly $300 billion, according to a Lehman survey of 300 public, private and government-owned oil companies. In 2005 and 2006 capex among these firms grew 20% and 30%, respectively.

XX My take -- E&P is slowing down because oil companies say they're taking a more conservative view on natural gas prices. However, internationally, E&P spending will rise 13% (thanks, Saudi Arabia!) and Chevron is planning to spend $20 billion in 2007 -- 20% more than this year.

Still, we need more spending in North America if we're going to become more energy independent.

Even with cheaper oil, energy hot in '07
(AP/Business Week) While supplies look ample now, "the continuing demand for oil and gas is unrelenting," said John Hofmeister, president of the U.S. subsidiary of Royal Dutch Shell PLC. The International Energy Agency forecasts world oil demand to rise to almost 86 million barrels a day, with consumption growing in China and across the Middle East at an annualized rate of 5.4 percent. At the same time, potential supply problems loom, including the war of words between Iran and the West over Tehran's nuclear ambitions and unrest in Nigeria.

XX My take -- $80 oil in 2007. That's my target.

Nation's energy grid could power almost 185 million electric cars
(TG Daily) Washington DC - A Department of Energy report shows that the U.S. energy grid could support up to 185 million electric or hybrid cars. The department believes a switch to the newer vehicles would clean up the environment and could even improve our national security situation by reducing the need for imported oil.

XX My take -- this is where my interest in oil and my enthusiasm for nuclear power come together. Our EXISTING energy grid could support 185 million electric cars. Let's build more nuclear power plants, upgrade the power grid, and tell the Sunni and Shiite extremists what they can do with their oil.
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