Breitburn Energy To Acquire QR Energy

breitburn_logoBreitburn Energy Partners LP (NASDAQ:BBEP) of Los Angeles announced on July 24th that it will acquire Houston-based QR Energy, LP (NYSE: QRE) in a transaction valued at $3 billion.

The merger will make Breitburn the nation’s largest oil-weighted upstream oil and gas master limited partnership, with an enterprise value of $7.8 billion and daily production of approximately 57,300 boe/d (barrels of oil equivalent per day), 67% of it liquids. Continue reading

DOGGR To Review Waste Water Injection Rules, Shuts Some Kern County Disposal Wells

The Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resources (DOGGR) said on July 18th that it will conduct a full review of the state’s Underground Injection Control (UIC) Program to ensure it complies with requirements of the Safe Drinking Water Act.

The announcement came two weeks after DOGGR issued emergency orders to shut down 11 Kern County waste water injection wells. It later lifted two of those orders.

The review, which will be conducted in conjunction with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will take 12 to 18 months, said DOGGR.

The review will examine both previously approved UIC wells as well as current approval practices, to ensure that they are consistent across the state and that injections comply with state and federal laws and regulations. Continue reading

Oxy Names California Leadership

Occidental Petroleum (NYSE: OXY) on July 17th announced the leadership team for its new California Resources Corporation (CRC) subsidiary. Todd A. Stevens will be President and Chief Executive Officer, and William E. Albrecht will be Executive Chairman of the Board.

In February Occidental announced plans to move its headquarters from Los Angeles to Houston and establish CRC as an independent oil and natural gas exploration and production company operating exclusively in California.

Stephen I. Chazen, Occidental’s President and Chief Executive Officer, said the two men “bring proven leadership abilities and more than 50 years of combined industry experience. Both have played an important part in building and managing our California operations for over 15 years.” Continue reading

DOGGR Regulations Deadline Extended to July 1, 2015

The final deadline for DOGGR to implement permanent regulations on fracking under SB 4 has been extended by six months, to July 1, 2015.

The change was incorporated in a little-noticed “trailer bill” amending the state budget, passed and signed into law on June 20th by Gov. Jerry Brown, which took effect immediately.

The revised deadline avoids a potential scheduling problem for DOGGR (the Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources of the California Department of Conservation.) The previous deadline for the agency to issue permanent regulations, as specified in SB4, was January 1, 2015. However, the deadline for DOGGR to file a required statewide Environmental Impact Report on well stimulation activities is July 1, 2015.

Thus DOGGR could have been obliged to issue final regulations under Senate Bill 4 several months before the completion of the EIR – with the possibility that the findings in the EIR could then have required revisions to those just-issued regulations. Setting both deadlines to the same date eliminates that potential conflict.

SB4 required DOGGR to establish temporary regulations for all well stimulation treatments including hydraulic fracturing and acidizing wells. It also establishes requirements for testing, monitoring, public notice, and permitting.

Chevron Updates Q2 Outlook

Chevron Corporation (NYSE: CVX) reported on July 10th in an interim update that earnings for the second quarter 2014 are expected to be higher than first quarter 2014. The San Ramon-based company said this is a result of gains on asset sales and an absence of impairments in the prior quarter. Continue reading

Chevron Sells Interests in Africa

Chevron Corporation (NYSE: CVX) announced on June 13 that its subsidiary, Chevron Global Energy Inc., has sold its 25 percent non-operated interest in a producing oil concession in southern Chad and the related export pipeline interests to the Republic of Chad for approximately $1.3 billion.

“This sale demonstrates our focus on strategically managing our portfolio to maximize the value of our global upstream businesses,” said George Kirkland, vice chairman of San Ramon-based Chevron Corporation.