The Seismic Silence of ChiCom-19… And Fighting Back Against the Soviet-Saudi Assault on US Energy Security.

Guest “geoscientists without borders schist” by David Middleton

NEWS 31 MARCH 2020
Coronavirus lockdowns have changed the way Earth moves
A reduction in seismic noise because of changes in human activity is a boon for geoscientists.

Elizabeth Gibney

The coronavirus pandemic has brought chaos to lives and economies around the world. But efforts to curb the spread of the virus might mean that the planet itself is moving a little less. Researchers who study Earth’s movement are reporting a drop in seismic noise — the hum of vibrations in the planet’s crust — that could be the result of transport networks and other human activities being shut down. They say this could allow detectors to spot smaller earthquakes and boost efforts to monitor volcanic activity and other seismic events.

A noise reduction of this magnitude is usually only experienced briefly around Christmas, says Thomas Lecocq, a seismologist the Royal Observatory of Belgium in Brussels, where the drop has been observed.

Just as natural events such as earthquakes cause Earth’s crust to move, so do vibrations caused by moving vehicles and industrial machinery. And although the effects from individual sources might be small, together they produce background noise, which reduces seismologists’ ability to detect other signals occurring at the same frequency.

[…]

Nature News
Source: Royal Observatory of Belgium (Nature News)

With this reduction in background noise, they might finally be able to detect all the earthquakes that frac’ing doesn’t cause (if anyone is still frac’ing). While the Soviet -Saudi price war hasn’t hit US crude oil production yet…

US Crude Oil Production (thousands of barrels per day, EIA)

January 2020 was the third highest production rate in US history. The March 2020 Drilling Productivity Report indicates that tight/shale oil production will increase by 18,000 bbl/day in April, led by the Permian Basin (+38,000 bbl/d).

The Soviet-Saudi price war will soon hit production.

With oil prices in parts of the Permian Basin dropping below $6/bbl, the rig count is dropping faster than anytime in the past 5 years and it’s just a matter of time before we see a repeat of 2014-2016, or worse.

What can the Federal government do tho thwart this assault on our energy security?

Strategic Petroleum Reserve

US to Lease Space for Initial 30 Million Barrels in Emergency Oil Reserve
Timothy Gardner and Laila Kearney, Reuters

Fri, 04/03/2020

The Trump administration said April 2 it plans to lease space in the country’s emergency petroleum reserve for an initial 30 million barrels of oil in a bid to help struggling crude drillers, after a previous effort to buy oil for the stockpile was ditched over a lack of funding.

The storage lease plan for the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, or SPR, will involve an exchange of up to 22.8 million barrels of sweet crude, which is what most onshore drillers produce, and up to 7.2 million barrels of sour crude. All of the oil will be produced domestically, the Department of Energy (DOE) said.

The new plan could help the U.S. deal with a growing glut of crude oil that risks overwhelming commercial storage tanks and sending world energy prices deeper into a tailspin as the coronavirus pandemic slashes demand for fuel.

The DOE said it intends to eventually lease storage for an additional 47 million barrels, which would fill the SPR to capacity.

As oil prices tumbled 55% in March on the twin threats of crumbling demand and a race for market share between Russia and Saudi Arabia, two of the world’s top oil producers, U.S. President Donald Trump directed the DOE to fill the reserve “to the top.” But the DOE ditched that plan after Congress failed to allocate about $3 billion for the purchase in last month’s big stimulus bill.

The DOE said it expected the first crude deliveries for the lease to the SPR, which holds oil in a series of salt caverns on the Texas and Louisiana coasts, in late April to early May, and that it will be able to receive up to 685,000 bbl/d.

[…]

Hart Energy

A Reverse Oil Embargo

OIL 31 Mar 2020 | 18:46 UTC Washington
Trump considering crude oil import limits for US refiners: sources

Washington — President Donald Trump is considering a plan which would significantly limit US refineries from importing foreign crude and instead process Bakken, Permian and other domestic crudes, sources said Tuesday.

US Senator Kevin Cramer, a North Dakota Republican, pitched the idea to Trump during a roughly 40 minute phone call Monday.
“It just doesn’t seem rational to accept Saudi oil while they’re declaring a price war,” Cramer said in an interview Tuesday with S&P Global Platts.

Sources familiar with discussions within the White House said Tuesday that the import prohibitions were among the options Trump is considering to blunt the impact of the ongoing price collapse on the domestic oil and gas industry. A White House spokesman declined to comment on the record Tuesday.

Cramer said the new import prohibitions could be enacted by Trump under the International Emergency Economic Powers Act, which Trump used in 2019 to impose tariffs on Mexican exports after declaring illegal immigration a national emergency.

The proposal would include some exceptions, particularly for US refineries built to run crude grades unavailable in the US, Cramer said.

[…]

S&P Global Platts

Prior to the insane ChiCom-19 panic, the US produced about 12 million bbl/d of crude oil, but consumed about 20 million bbl/d. While Canada, by far, is our primary source of imported crude (~4.4 million bbl/d), we still import about 1 million bbl/d from Saudi Arabia and the Soviet Union (EIA). If the US curbed crude oil imports, we could find a buyer for every barrel of domestic crude oil production, even with the ChiCom-19 crimp in demand.

On the other hand, Saudi Arabia and the Soviet Union didn’t have sufficient domestic demand to consume their pre-price war production, much less the excess production they are dumping on the market. The US could very easily remove about 5 million bbl/d from global demand, available to the Saudis and Soviets.

While a reverse oil embargo wouldn’t drive up the average global price of oil (it is a global, fungible commodity), it could reverse the price differential between West Texas Intermediate (WTI, the US benchmark) and Brent (the international benchmark), with WTI trading at a premium to Brent.

So…

Frac on dudes!

Day 20 of America Held Hostage by ChiCom-19

As of yesterday, Dallas County (1,015) was a close second place to Harris County (1,106) in Texas ChiCom-19 cases.

Dallas CountyCHICOM-19
PopulationCasesDeaths
2,637,772101818
% of population with0.0386%0.00068%
% with, rounded0.0%0.00%
% without99.9614%99.9993%
% without, rounded100.0%100.00%

Can you say?

On working from home… If you start out closer to Day 2, you can accomplish this in a few hours…

Hey ChiCom-19… “Make my day”…

Soviet Union? ChiCom-19?

If you don’t care for my description of Russia as the Soviet Union, and all things coronavirus as ChiCom-19…

Geoscientists without borders?

Geoscientists without borders is a “real thing”… I don’t know what it is, but they handed out these goofy @$$ bandannas at the 2016 Society of Exploration Geophysicists convention…

It will finally come in handy!

CDC Now Recommends Americans Consider Wearing Cloth Face Coverings In Public

Nitwit Pinko Radio

163 thoughts on “The Seismic Silence of ChiCom-19… And Fighting Back Against the Soviet-Saudi Assault on US Energy Security.

  1. As far as I understand it – the strategic petroleum fillup is a rounding error compared with extended consumption declines in the US and Europe.
    In particular, a 3 month lockdown would likely yield 1 billion plus excess oil vs. consumption. SPR can take in maybe 180 million barrels? And that would be more than offset by Saudi and Russian increased production – if it happens.

      • “Prior to the insane ChiCom-19 panic, the US produced about 12 million bbl/d of crude oil, but consumed about 20 million bbl/d. While Canada, by far, is our primary source of imported crude (~4.4 million bbl/d), we still import about 1 million bbl/d from Saudi Arabia and the Soviet Union (EIA).”

        This is misleading because a big part of this is petroleum we import, refine, and export. We are energy independent but we also process, add value, and export petroleum products, which does not make us dependent, just industrial.

        • We (the USA) aren’t “energy independent” because we still need to import up to 40% of our crude oil. We are close to North American energy independece because we can source the majority of those imports from Canada and Mexico.

          We have become “energy secure” largely due to the “shale” revolution… We no longer have to primarily rely on unreliable, often hostile, nations for the life blood of our economy.

          The combination of the ChiCom-19 panic and the Soviet-Saudi assault on our energy security could take us back to the 1970’s.

    • “The Most Profitable Trade: ‘Oil All Over the Oceans Right Now’” By Javier Blas and Alex Longley on April 4, 2020
      https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-04-04/the-most-profitable-trade-oil-all-over-the-oceans-right-now

      … With oil demand in freefall, traders are resorting like never before to using the world’s fleet of supertankers as temporary floating storage facilities, filling them with millions of unsold barrels until better times. It’s an unusual trade, but one that’s among the most lucrative around right now, just when everyone on Wall Street struggles to make money. …

      The oil market has flipped upside down, with the cost of a barrel of oil today far below what the market is willing to pay in, say, six months or a year. It’s what traders call a contango market. As oil is cheaper today than in 2021, a trader can buy crude now, put it on storage, while simultaneously selling in the forward market, in effect locking in the price difference between the different dates. As long as the contango is wide enough to cover the cost of storage, finance and insurance, the transaction is profitable.

      … Earlier this week, the six-month contango in Brent market, a gauge of the economic viability of floating storage, widened to a record of $14.46 a barrel, surpassing the peak set in the 2008-09 crisis, when oil demand briefly plunged. …

      The traders aren’t the only ones making money. Shipowners are racking up exorbitant fees. Two years ago, the daily price of a standard supertanker, known as very large crude carrier, or VLCC, was about $18,000 a day. This year, one owner managed to get a record of more than $400,000 a day. …

      The glut, almost entirely caused by the demand collapse emanating from Covid-19, is a disaster for the wider global oil industry though. While the traders and the shipowners profit from the contango, Trump is eager for Saudi Arabia and Russia to work together to roll back production in order to lift prices and protect the jobs of workers in the U.S. oil industry. …

      With Trump pushing Riyadh and Moscow to act, the contango has narrowed, endangering the profitability of the floating storage trade. But it’s far from over. Even if the OPEC+ alliance cuts production by 10 million barrels a day, as Trump suggested, it won’t be enough to offset the drop in demand, which most executives say is far bigger than that. …

      • Your insistence on calling Russia “the Soviet Union” makes you look pretty ignorant.

        But carry on reducing your credibility with pointless jibes… and your schist-y word-“play”.

        BTW – as a percentage of GDP, the Russian government actually spends less than the US government.

        • The only substantial difference between the old Soviet Union and the new Russia, is that they lost control of their colonies.

          As for govt spending vs GDP, you actually believe either figure out of the Soviet Union?

          As to your whines about word plays, you are the only one who gives a schist.

        • Observer: I thought he was making a valid point, calling it ignorance indicates you are obfuscating the point. His point is that currently Putin’s Russia is acting like the “good old days” Vlad has worked tirelessly to restore. His credibility isn’t impaired in the least by this device. I got his point, why didn’t you?
          BTW, the Soviets produce oil, gas, and vodka. A communist country should spend far more than a non-commie USA. Not really valid to compare their GDP and spending to ours. Please try observing with your eyes open, you will miss less.

          • The US produces oil, gas and vodka, too. So I suppose that proves we can refer to the US as the Soviet Union now?

            And yes; a communist country should spend more than the US… but the Russian government doesn’t. NOW do you get the point?

          • Observer: I’m the one who got the point. The US GDP is much higher because it produces (even after transfer of so many jobs to other countries) far more than those three commodities and has never been referred to as the Soviet Union, so thanks for proving my point. What you suppose is not worth another keystroke.

          • Putin needs to be Putout
            He’s been in office since his Premiere days of 1999 and has been either Prime Minister/President from 1999-2008 then PM from 2008 – 2012, then President again from 2012 – Current.
            The guy is bordering on Tsar (ruler for life)

          • Observer

            April 6, 2020 at 9:06 am

            The US produces oil, gas and vodka, too. So I suppose that proves we can refer to the US as the Soviet Union now?

            And yes; a communist country should spend more than the US… but the Russian government doesn’t. NOW do you get the point?

            We ARE a Union of States

        • BTW – as a percentage of GDP, the Russian government actually spends less than the US government.

          Thanks for gittin’ on Middleton about this Observer. It’s about time someone did. I have some spare 2020 Putin calendars left if you haven’t gotten yours already. Pooty lookin’ mighty manly in these provocative propaganda shots, even in the puppy pictures!

          If we’re going to talk about GDP, we could talk about how one state in the great United States whoops up on Russia all day long – Texas. And this with 5 times LESS the population. What observations have you about that?

          https://www.forbes.com/sites/greatspeculations/2018/04/17/which-has-the-bigger-economy-texas-or-russia/#743a32fc70b9

          • The point is, by most definitions Russia is actually less “socialist” now than the USA.

            Thanks for the calendar offer, but as a minarchist I’m not really into leader-worship.

          • The point is, by most definitions Russia is actually less “socialist” now than the USA.

            You mean with all that freedom of the press, freedom of religion, and annexing portions of neighboring countries property by military force? It’s my understanding that +/- 33% of all workers in Russia are employed either by the State or in businesses where the primary stakeholder is the State.

            Is it a minarchist principle that the State should employ fully one third of all workers? And what about state ownership of business? I understood minarchism to advance the principle of less government, not more?

        • Sweetheart Deal: Uncle Sugar and the Sugar Lobby

          Gary North – July 30, 2019
          Printer-Friendly Format
          For over 200 years, the U.S. government has imposed quotas on the import of sugar into the United States. This has allowed domestic sugar producers the ability to charge more for sugar. Americans consume less sugar.

          Don’t think of this as cronyism. Don’t think of this as crony capitalism. Think of this as a government program to fight tooth decay.

          Then the government provides subsidies to the sugar industry. Think of this as a way to keep the industry healthy, and dentists, too.

          What’s that? You say that this sounds schizophrenic? Does the right hand not know what the left hand is doing. Of course it does. When the government greases the palms of special-interest groups, it uses both hands.

          This summer, my wife and I went to Canada to set up a Canadian bank account. Americans are not allowed to do this unless they journey to Canada. Canadians speak fluent English. Except for an occasional “aboot,” it is almost like conversing with an American.

          Before we left, my wife bought some candy. Canadian candy is made with sugar, not corn syrup, or “ethanol for sweet tooths.” When we returned to the USA, we were asked if we had bought anything. “Some candy,” she said. The immigration guard said, “A lot of people do that.” I’ll bet.

          The effect of sugar quotas is to drive American candy companies to Canada and Mexico. The candy can be imported without quotas. Only sugar in its pre-baking form is restricted. So, Americans lose jobs. But no one notices.

          https://www.garynorth.com/public/19778.cfm

          Just change word Oil for sugar

          Economic fascism is the doctrine that there is a government-business alliance that makes the nation wealthy or strong militarily. This idea has never had a judicial basis before. Now it does.

          The first fascist agency in post-Constitution history was the First Bank of the United States. It went out of existence in 1811. The Second Bank of the United States created a replacement: 1816 to 1836.
          https://www.garynorth.com/public/9722.cfm

  2. The SPR can hold about 714 million bbl. The inventory stands at about 635 million bbl. There’s room for about 80 million bbl.

    The only math that matters here is US production and consumption. They are exclusively purchasing domestically produced oil for the SPR. What Russia and Saudi Arabia is irrelevant to the 77 million bbl they currently plan to purchase. The SPR can currently take in about 685,000 bbl/d. Since most US production is light/sweet crude and about 2/3 of our refining capacity is geared toward heavy/sour crude, they will initiate “swaps”, selling heavy/sour crude from the SPR to refiners and replacing it with light/sweet crude from producers.

    The President has the authority to decide who we import oil from. He can exempt imports from Canada and, if necessary, from Venezuela. This could have the effect of taking 5 million bbl/d out of the global demand market, by sourcing it entirely from the Western Hemisphere. This will leave a lot of Saudi and Soviet oil floating around on tankers, if this option is pursued.

    • Yup, people generally don’t understand that it’s all about the regional market when it comes to oil price. Wyoming oil is about $15 right now – I imagine there are tens of thousands of wells being shut in about now that the monthly average price is reflecting the crash.

    • A fair point.
      But still doesn’t address the original question: would filling the SPR actually make any difference to fracking oil drillers?
      If the US suffers a 12% consumption decline due to nCOV for 3 months – that’s a bit less than the 80 million barrel available capacity for the SPR, but the delta would be 2.4 million barrels per day – which your note that the SPR could only take 635K of.
      And while this could be made up with the US banning oil imports – it still isn’t clear to me that the West Texas prices will dramatically diverge from the rest of the world, unless there is a federal government mandated price as well.

      • Yes, C1ue, they should just mandate the oil price for the North American market like they did in the 70’s…..and again windfall tax companies bringing in cheaper oil and reselling it until they wish they’d bought NA crude. Then taxpayer dollars aren’t used to fill a petroleum reserve that hasn’t been necessary for 20 years. Plus oil companies can actually prepare an annual budget and stabilize their supply industries as well. It would be far better than the energy sector being putinized and saudimized like they are now.

        • DMacKenzie,
          The only quibble I have is the strategic petroleum reserve is indeed needed. It is the US cache to keep the warfighters full if there is a shutdown of the world oil market.

      • Support U.S. oil, fill your gas tanks and drive about till empty then refill. Just driving produces zero CORONAVIRUS exposure potential while refilling your tank does create some potential for exposure

        • I drive for Doordash and Uber Eats, so that’s exactly what I’m doing, while taking reasonable precautions.

          • As a frequent driver, how would compare traffic now vs before the stay at home orders were sort of issued.

  3. “With this reduction in background noise, they might finally be able to detect all the earthquakes that frac’ing doesn’t cause… If anyone was frac’ing.”

    One of the biggest benefactors of this decline in background seismic noise would have been the Advanced LIGO gravitational wave (GW) detectors at Livingston LA, and Hanford WA, and the Italian one called Virgo. They were supposed to run their cooperative 3 instrument “O-3” operational observing run through April but shut down early 2 weeks ago to allow scientists, technicians and other support workers to comply with shelter at home orders for the COVID-19 epidemic.

    Apparently the small one in Germany GEO-600 (600 meter arms compared to the 4 km arms of A-LIGO and the 3 km arms of Virgo) though is still observing (collecting data).
    https://ldas-jobs.ligo.caltech.edu/~gwistat/gwistat/gwistat.html

    The GW science community could really benefit from a lowered seismic background right now to help study the background GW environment of the universe and look for alternate GW polarizations not predicted by General Relativity (and set even lower limits on their detect-ability and thus likelihood). Too bad they had to shut down IMO. This is one area where real science and physics is now occurring with CERN’s LHC in a long shutdown (Long Shutdown 2 (LS2)) for upgrades and originally not expected to start running again until 2021, which now will slip as upgrade work has likely slowed to crawl as well there with the COVID-19 epidemic.

  4. Entertaining posting David. I had the other problem with geophysics, not the benefit of less seismic activity the current situation is providing. In about 1986 I was working a gold exploration project in central Nevada, just a few miles north of the Nellis Test Range border, and about 80 miles west of the Groom Lake/Area 51 location. While I and another company geologist were doing field work on the project we saw very strange aircraft flying overhead, triangular shapes with subdued jet sounds. We wanted some geophysical data, and IP was the choice. This puts pulses of electricity into the ground at various frequencies, and then reads the frequency and strength that exits the ground at various electrode spacings and distances, looking for conductor characteristics. We got all set up and then turned on the receivers to check ambient noise, without the generator running, and were stunned to see tremendous amounts of electrical energy, bleeding through all frequencies, coming out of the ground. Turns out it was due to very powerful radars (and possibly other energy sources?) coming from the northern end of Nellis Range trying to detect the stealth fighters that we were seeing flying around. I called the test range public relations phone number and asked them if they had a schedule or worked on weekends and this generated a visit from the FBI, and these FBI Agents were not easy to convince about anything. Not a great day. Anyway, enjoy the seismic quiet and stay safe.

    • In the “old days,” seismic acquisition crews applied a 60 hz notch filter for power line noise. This had the effect of cutting out a lot of signal along with the noise. Fortunately, advances in data processing enabled us to attenuate power line noise in processing.

      • Ha! That 60 hz “notch filter” was more of a “V”. Amazing how often I had to ask recorders to turn it off in the middle of North Dakota, when they only had one or two power lines in the state.

      • It will be interesting to see how this all shakes out.
        If our activity increases smaller reverberations with the potential for decreasing larger ones through the gradual and constant release of small amounts of seismic energy, could the lack of constant small scale reverberations trigger larger scale sudden and potentially catastrophic releases of seismic energy?

    • Ron
      If you look at an aeronautical chart of Area 51, you should notice a power line extending between the desert to Groom Lake. There are no apparent facilities above ground to either produce or consume electricity except at Groom Lake.

  5. Millimeters ground displacement? I doubt it. I think the infamous “Hum” is less now, but still big trucks on highways which is the most of it. Still lots of air traffic.

  6. With the endless supply of money from Soros et al. billionaire club, the Greens should purchase their own oil reserve and use it to sequester carbon by making sure the oil is never burned. That way the money they are laundering from tax coffers in the western world could go back to its main source and you have that circular economy.

  7. Percent of world population that benefits from higher oil prices: 0.1% (holding majority of energy and bank shares)
    Percent of world population hurt by higher oil prices(rounded) :100%
    Percent of those rooting for higher oil prices, even though they are hurt by them, who are dumb suckers: 100% (not rounded)
    Percent of posts like these that you will allow to be published (estimate): 0%

    • This is exactly right. Low energy prices are a good thing for the rest of the economy outside of the energy industry. It’s exactly why we rail against renewables. Trump’s initial plan to buy oil at low prices to fill up the reserves was exactly the right strategy, so of course the Dems in congress blocked it, while pushing for payouts to their normal pet projects. Some shale producers may go under, but when oil prices go back up then somebody will be turning that production back on, guaranteed.

    • Your numbers are way off. Certainly, more than 0.1% of world population would benefit from higher oil prices, not the least of which are oil company workers and those in oil exploration, production, services and marketing, in addition to share holders.

      A quick search reveals that over 10 million in the U.S. are supported by income from oil and gas. The would be about 3%.

      • Scissor: I noticed Mr. Lerner saying only “majority” shareholders benefit. I was gonna ask him why minority shareholders don’t benefit. Then I noticed his math was off, his last line was off by infinity, since we saw his published post. I decided not to bother with him.

  8. “Geoscientists without borders is a “real thing”… I don’t know what it is, but they handed out these goofy @$$ bandannas at the 2016 Society of Exploration Geophysicists convention…”

    Someone justifying their budget?

  9. What does the Seismic Noise graph look like over decades? Is this reduction significant in the longer term? Or is it just noise?

  10. It’s not an oil price war; it is a supply and demand issue – too much supply naturally results in lower prices. Controlling oil price through a cartel (monopoly) imposes artificial supply shortages, and consequent higher prices. Free market pricing is hands-down more advantageous to the consumer, but places inefficient producers at a disadvantage. Fracturing shale to recover the small amounts of oil contained therein is an inherently inefficient (expensive) process, which cannot compete with more efficient means of production elsewhere in the world. Government subsidies will support inefficient energy production in the U.S., be it in the form of oil, wind or solar. Do you want to subsidize your oil industry so that you can pay more for this form of energy?

    • Charles April 5, 2020 at 11:28 am
      It’s not an oil price war; it is a supply and demand issue – too much supply naturally results in lower prices.
      —————-
      And surely USA is all about a free market – no subsidies to any one. Is this not what is being said about renewables?
      If it is too expensive to frac the don’t. Cheaper supplies are available from Russia and Saudi and free market says to purchase that (doesn’t it?).

      I don’t think I understand the USA “free market”

  11. David, thanks for another informative and entertaining post! It seems that the modelers of the COVID-19 dem-panic are closely akin to those working the AGW scam! Hopefully this will continue to be the case and we can all get back to work before the Green Raw Deal gets implemented by proxy.
    I think your tin-foil hat guy is not fully equipped; he needs a roll of toilet paper, some hand sanitizer and a box of wipes. And I am shocked, shocked I say, that he is not packing a pistol and rock hammer on his belt!

    • In fourteen counties of Northern California, population 700,000, the ChiCom-19 infection rate is .005% with a death rate of .000000000000000000000%. Wonder why the powers-that-be don’t plug those statistics into their models.

    • These are the no mitigation projected numbers for today that Scottish Sceptic gave to David a couple of weeks back: Sun 5 Apr 9,959,403 (cases) 298,782 (deaths).

      In actuality, we’re at ~330,000 cases and less than about 10,000 or so deaths. One might conclude that mitigation works.

        • The shoulder holster normally holds a S&W Model 586 .357 Magnum and two speed loaders.

          Disregard the wife comment above. Beats my Glock 17 with which I still can’t hit the side of a barn at 10 yards.

    • The shoulder holster normally holds a S&W Model 586 .357 Magnum and two speed loaders.

      • David, to paraphrase what my firearms instructor taught me 35 years ago: “Speed loaders! Those aren’t speed loaders! The only speed loaders in 357 magnum come with the Desert Eagle L5!”
        I was training with a S&W Model 586 at the time as well as a 686! My wife got the 586 in the divorce settlement. Rats!

  12. In the above article, the following is written:

    ‘the US produced about 12 million bbl/d of crude oil, but consumed about 20 million bbl/d. While Canada, by far, is our primary source of imported crude (~4.4 million bbl/d), we still import about 1 million bbl/d from Saudi Arabia and the Soviet Union (EIA). If the US curbed crude oil imports, we could find a buyer for every barrel of domestic crude oil production, even with the ChiCom-19 crimp in demand.’

    ‘While a reverse oil embargo wouldn’t drive up the average global price of oil (it is a global, fungible commodity), it could reverse the price differential between West Texas Intermediate (WTI, the US benchmark) and Brent (the international benchmark), with WTI trading at a premium to Brent.’

    This is pure nonsense!

    According to the latest EIA Weekly Petroleum status report, over the last 4 weeks the U.S. has indeed consumed about 20 MM bbls/day of petroleum products, but it has also produced an equivalent amount (13 MM bbls/day of oil, plus 7 MM bbls/day of other liquids).

    The U.S. has also imported about 8.5 mm bbls/day of oil and petroleum products while exporting around 9 mm bbls/day.

    The reason why the U.S. imports so much oil is that the oil that it produces (a lot of light and very light oil from shale) doesn’t match the needs of its refineries, a lot of which were built to handle heavy oil. The reason why it exports so much is that it has to get rid of the light oil for which it has no domestic market, plus it acts as a custom refiner for other nations.

    So what would happen if the U.S. put an import tax on oil.
    1. It would probably cripple its refineries who would lose their export market.
    2. It would not help the price of U.S. oil, as the marginal barrels of shale oil (which have no domestic market) would still need to be sold into the international market at world prices, which may even be lower thanks to the U.S. tax.

      • You are right. You make my point. The article confuses the two.

        According to the EIA report, the ‘Crude input to refineries’ over the last 4 weeks was about 15.5 MM bbls/day, and not 20 MM bbls/day as suggested..

        The U.S. consumes 20 MM bbls/day of petroleum products. However it produces more than 23.5 MM bbls/day of petroleum products (of which 5.5 mm bbls/day are exported), from this 15.5 MM bbls/day of crude oil plus 7+ MM of other liquids.

        The idea that in import tax could isolate the U.S. from the international oil market is, in my opinion, not realistic.

          • And that is the problem.

            The U.S. does not consume 20 MM bbls/day of crude oil. According to the EIA, it consumes (over the last 4 weeks) only 15.5 MM bbls / day of crude oil. And even at that, a significant portion of the resultant refined products is exported.

          • Your point?

            From the post:

            Prior to the insane ChiCom-19 panic, the US produced about 12 million bbl/d of crude oil, but consumed about 20 million bbl/d. While Canada, by far, is our primary source of imported crude (~4.4 million bbl/d), we still import about 1 million bbl/d from Saudi Arabia and the Soviet Union (EIA). If the US curbed crude oil imports, we could find a buyer for every barrel of domestic crude oil production, even with the ChiCom-19 crimp in demand.

            From the EIA:

            How much oil is consumed in the United States?

            Only a small amount of crude oil is directly consumed in the United States. Nearly all of the crude oil that is produced in or imported into the United States is refined into petroleum products such as gasoline, diesel fuel, heating oil, and jet fuel, which are then consumed. Liquids produced from natural gas processing are also consumed as petroleum products. Renewable biofuels, such as ethanol and biodiesel, are used as substitutes for, or as additives to, refined petroleum products. The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) includes biofuels in consumption of petroleum products. EIA uses product supplied to represent U.S. petroleum consumption.

            In 2019, the United States consumed an average of about 20.46 million barrels of petroleum per day, or a total of about 7.47 billion barrels of petroleum products.

            EIA

            Sources of the crude oil to feed the 20.46 million barrels (mmbbl) of petroleum per day:

             Crude Oil (mbbl/m) (mbbl/d) (mmbbl/d)
            Month U.S. Prod  Imports Total Total Total U.S. Imported
            Jan-20         395,077     198,663    593,740     19,152.90       19 67% 33%
            Dec-19         396,926     211,751    608,677     19,634.74       20 65% 35%
            Nov-19         385,989     174,486    560,475     18,682.50       19 69% 31%
            Oct-19         392,898     193,544    586,442     18,917.48       19 67% 33%
            Sep-19         374,356     194,340    568,696     18,956.53       19 66% 34%
            Aug-19         383,927     215,273    599,200     19,329.03       19 64% 36%
            Jul-19         366,514     214,988    581,502     18,758.13       19 63% 37%
            Jun-19         361,805     214,233    576,038     19,201.27       19 63% 37%
            May-19         375,507     221,900    597,407     19,271.19       19 63% 37%
            Apr-19         363,682     210,741    574,423     19,147.43       19 63% 37%
            Mar-19         368,644     209,541    578,185     18,651.13       19 64% 36%
            Feb-19         326,734     186,243    512,977     18,320.61       18 64% 36%
            Jan-19         367,548     233,126    600,674     19,376.58       19 61% 39%
            Dec-18         373,164     220,002    593,166     19,134.39       19 63% 37%
            Nov-18         359,979     226,251    586,230     19,541.00       20 61% 39%
            Oct-18         360,572     227,975    588,547     18,985.39       19 61% 39%
            Sep-18         344,930     227,795    572,725     19,090.83       19 60% 40%
            Aug-18         352,176     247,656    599,832     19,349.42       19 59% 41%
            Jul-18         337,621     246,014    583,635     18,826.94       19 58% 42%
            Jun-18         319,472     254,623    574,095     19,136.50       19 56% 44%
            May-18         324,245     242,857    567,102     18,293.61       18 57% 43%
            Apr-18         315,308     247,608    562,916     18,763.87       19 56% 44%
            Mar-18         325,625     236,216    561,841     18,123.90       18 58% 42%
            Feb-18         287,879     209,942    497,821     17,779.32       18 58% 42%
            Jan-18         310,548     248,552    559,100     18,035.48       18 56% 44%
            Dec-17         309,172     241,245    550,417     17,755.39       18 56% 44%
            Nov-17         302,120     230,230    532,350     17,745.00       18 57% 43%
            Oct-17         299,250     238,109    537,359     17,334.16       17 56% 44%
            Sep-17         285,356     219,708    505,064     16,835.47       17 56% 44%
            Aug-17         286,702     245,611    532,313     17,171.39       17 54% 46%
            Jul-17         286,287     245,369    531,656     17,150.19       17 54% 46%
            Jun-17         273,198     242,677    515,875     17,195.83       17 53% 47%
            May-17         284,659     263,106    547,765     17,669.84       18 52% 48%
            Apr-17         273,008     246,132    519,140     17,304.67       17 53% 47%
            Mar-17         284,028     253,114    537,142     17,327.16       17 53% 47%
            Feb-17         254,875     220,558    475,433     16,979.75       17 54% 46%
            Jan-17         274,763     262,811    537,574     17,341.10       17 51% 49%
            Dec-16         272,731     242,335    515,066     16,615.03       17 53% 47%
            Nov-16         266,924     240,691    507,615     16,920.50       17 53% 47%
            Oct-16         273,858     234,666    508,524     16,404.00       16 54% 46%
            Sep-16         256,015     241,213    497,228     16,574.27       17 51% 49%
            Aug-16         268,963     248,482    517,445     16,691.77       17 52% 48%
            Jul-16         268,018     250,986    519,004     16,742.06       17 52% 48%
            Jun-16         259,624     226,802    486,426     16,214.20       16 53% 47%
            May-16         273,504     245,749    519,253     16,750.10       17 53% 47%
            Apr-16         266,065     228,344    494,409     16,480.30       16 54% 46%
            Mar-16         281,760     248,383    530,143     17,101.39       17 53% 47%
            Feb-16         262,610     229,492    492,102     16,969.03       17 53% 47%
            Jan-16         285,111     236,065    521,176     16,812.13       17 55% 45%

            EIA

            While we do export some crude oil, mostly to Canada and Mexico, we are a net importer of crude oil. About 2/3 of our exports are refined petroleum products.

  13. “President Donald Trump is considering a plan which would significantly limit US refineries from importing foreign crude and instead process Bakken, Permian and other domestic crudes, sources said Tuesday.”

    This will really hit CA, MA and NY. CA imported 58% of its crude from foreign sources in 2019. California is a “fuel island” and has no pipelines linking it to petroleum or crude oil supplies. (I never could fathom why CA refuses to purchase crude and petroleum from American sources.) In MA and NY it’s the same story only it’s LNG and NG instead. NYC has 20,000 customers waiting for NG hookups. The state refuses to allow NG pipe lines and LNG facilities to be built. Some communities in MA have imposed moratoriums on NG hookups since 2014.

    • John, Commiefornia politicos feel much more empathy for their counterparts in Venezuela and Russia than they do for Americans! They want to support countries that share similar systems and goals with the CA elites; neo-feudalism and the rebuilding slave trade provided by the drug cartels. Other Americans want liberty and prosperity; in Commiefornia power is the only goal!

    • John
      You said, “This will really hit CA, MA and NY.” No great loss! (Says a former Californian.) Perhaps it will encourage them to speed up the lemmings going over the cliff.

    • You know the reason why the refiners didnt want to spend $2 bill on a new West Texas to California oil pipeline?
      “However, key refiners feared getting locked into long-term commitments to receive pipeline oil from West Texas. Valero Energy Corp and Tesoro Corp both preferred getting deliveries by rail, which gives them the flexibility to shop among crude oil supplies from different places including the Bakken oilfield in North Dakota. ”
      https://www.worldpipelines.com/business-news/03062013/energy_pipeline_giant_shelves_crude_oil_pipeline_plans_349/

      Some people havent kept up how oil moves without pipelines

      Plus theres these
      https://theodora.com/pipelines/united_states_pipelines_map.jpg

  14. From the article: “Sources familiar with discussions within the White House said Tuesday that the import prohibitions were among the options Trump is considering to blunt the impact of the ongoing price collapse on the domestic oil and gas industry.”

    Trump has been hinting about doing “something” if the Russians and Saudis don’t come to an agreement which will allow oil prices to rise. Trump is telling them he prefers they take care of this problem, but if they don’t, then Trump is going to take care of it, at least as far as the American oil industry is concerned.

    Buy American, Refine American! It sounds good to me.

  15. “the insane ChiCom-19 panic”

    Death toll: USA: 9483 World: 68,472 at 19:50 UTC

    Know anybody working in hospital ER in Houston?

      • LOL “ahead of the curve” … can’t wait to link to your comment two weeks from now.

      • You calculation of percentage is incorrect. As of now 329 million people have not been infected. There have only been roughly 333,000 confirmed cases.

          • You are numerically challenged. The NUMBER OF DEATHS is not a percentage. But that’s expected, the math department at SCSU is pathetic.

          • Consider this Mr. Middleton.

            Right now (22:40 UTC) the USA death toll is 9557.

            at 21:50 (50 minutes ago) it was 9543. That is an increase of 14 of 0.15%

            In the past 40 minutes the population of the USA did not increase 0.15% it increased about 400/329,000,000

            You really don’t get what the 2nd derivative is.

          • The number of deaths is always a percentage of the population. Only a total fracking retard wouldn’t grasp this concept

          • “The number of deaths is always a percentage of the population.”

            Unfortunately the percentage is growing.

            Tell me Mr. Middleton, what do you think will slow down or stop the growing percentage?

          • “The number of deaths is always a percentage of the population.

            Yup, correct.

            However, as each hour passes, that percentage increases.

            Next week that percentage is going to be a lot higher.

          • Next week that percentage is going to be a lot higher.

            And it still won’t be high enough to round to any number other than 0.0%, thank goodness. Again, that’s not to minimize the loss of life but to put it into proper perspective.

          • Did Dallas and Houston contract for refrigerated trailer trucks to hold the dead bodies when the mortuaries are filled?

          • Because the rate of infection in Texas has not peaked. (refer to Italy, Spain and NYC for what to expect)

        • The rate of change of the numerator exceeds the rate of change of the denominator. That is why there is PANIC .

          It’s all about the 2nd derivative Davie.

          • The rate of change is the same.

            Every death (numerator) reduces the population (denominator) by 1.

          • Still… 0.0%. Even if the total number of deaths triples, to rival theat of the seasonal flu, it will still be 0.0%.

          • No Dave, the 2nd derivative is why there is PANIC

            Hiding behind rounding error makes you an a-hole when viewed by the mathematically astute.

          • Dave. unless you are a total moron, you will know that COVID-19 has a higher mortality rate than the seasonal flu. Additionally we can vaccinate against the flu. We cannot do so against COVID-19.

          • We have no fracking idea what the mortality rate of ChiCom-19 is, because we have no idea what the denominator is. The vast majority of infections appear to be mildly symptomatic or asymptomatic.

            If one assumes that the number of asymptomatic or minimally symptomatic cases is several times as high as the number of reported cases, the case fatality rate may be considerably less than 1%. This suggests that the overall clinical consequences of Covid-19 may ultimately be more akin to those of a severe seasonal influenza (which has a case fatality rate of approximately 0.1%) or a pandemic influenza (similar to those in 1957 and 1968) rather than a disease similar to SARS or MERS, which have had case fatality rates of 9 to 10% and 36%, respectively.2

            Fauci, et al., 2020
            https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMe2002387

          • BTW Davie, death from seasonal flu and COVID-19 is additive. Having both operative simultaneously makes your argument stupid.

      • You are posting the same moronic talking point over and over.

        Henry, we get it. You are scared witless over a virus that has not killed as many as several severe flu seasons of the last half century. Stay away from people who are coughing, wash your hands frequently, don’t touch your face, and stay away from other people and you will be fine.

        I might also suggest stop posting meaningless numbers over and over. They are meaningless because delays in reporting between jurisdictions means those numerical changes you are touting could be days or weeks late. Also;
        – Over half of the numbers of cases and deaths in the US are from New York City Metro Area where the moronic leadership was encouraging mass transit and public gatherings as late and mid March.
        – The rest of the country has been emphasizing social distancing and doesn’t have the mass transit problems that NY has.
        – A suburban lifestyle with private automotive transportation decreases the chances of acquiring this virus greatly.
        I do worry about the health care workers though as they will see the cases up close and personal.
        When this is done and the numbers are looked at hard, we will find that this virus hit the poor and working class in urban areas harder than anywhere else, because they live in tighter spaces and depend on mass transit to get to work.

      • Clyde, first, there is a vaccine for the flu, there is no vaccine for COVID-19

        Second, you seem to forget that the deaths from COVID-19 are in addition to the flu.

        So, with the 80,000 estimated deaths from the flu, add in another 10-15-20 or 50 thousand from COVID-19 isn’t important?

        Can I ask you a very simple question?

        Do you have a relative that is over 60 years old with underlying medical issues?

        • “Henry Pool April 5, 2020 at 5:54 pm

          Do you have a relative that is over 60 years old with underlying medical issues?”

          Trick question, right?

        • So, with the 80,000 estimated deaths from the flu, add in another 10-15-20 or 50 thousand from COVID-19 isn’t important?

          Even adding the two numbers together, it still rounds to 0.0%
          Again, that’s not to make light of the loss of life, but to put it into perspective.

        • “Second, you seem to forget that the deaths from COVID-19 are in addition to the flu.”
          Close, but no cigar. Nitpicking, I know.
          Some of those who would have died from the flu get COVID19 instead. This year’s flu deaths, then, would be expected to be somewhat lower that it otherwise would have been. No way to estimate this.

        • Pool
          You have to understand that the vaccine is a crap shoot because those mixing the cocktail sometime guess wrong and it is essentially ineffective.

          A better comparison is this year’s average, about 44,000, with an additional 50,000 COVID would be equivalent to a really bad seasonal flu year, but nothing like the Spanish Flu.

          I am old enough that both of my parents died decades ago. Similarly, other relatives from their generation have also been dead for years. I’m the one with skin in the game. But, even though I don’t have “underlying medical issues,” I’m taking precautions to not expose myself to those who might be infectious. I’m being prudent, but not hysterical.

  16. So, Mr. Middleton, why would a person who advocates limited government/anti-socialist wish to have the government interfere in the “free market” price of oil? The oil industry has it’s ups and downs, and can take care of itself no?

      • You must be a socialist when you ask: “What can the Federal government do tho thwart this assault on our energy security?”

        I for one don’t want my tax dollars going to the oil companies. When prices are high I pay, and now that prices are low you want the taxes I pay to go to oil companies?

          • You begged: “What can the Federal government do tho thwart this assault on our energy security”

            Appealing for government help is ASKING.

          • Asking “what” the government is capable of doing is not asking it to do it. Furthermore, it was the introduction on the sections about what the government is doing and considering doing.

            I write for people who read English.

          • LMAO: Asking “what” the government is capable of doing is not asking it to do it.

            Good, then stop asking the government anything.

            How about you ask your employer to cut your pay so that the cost per BBL of your employer goes down?

          • “I write for people who read English.”

            You are funny. You want the government to intervene and save your sorry arse.

            Why can’t you lower your production costs and compete with Saudi Arabia?

      • Also Mr. Middleton, if the outfit you work for is highly leveraged, and you lose your job because the company goes bankrupt with low oil prices, don’t blame Russia or Saudi Arabia. Blame the CEO’s of your outfit, they’re the ones that ran the company into the ground.

      • Doesn’t matter who owns the product, selling it for what the market is willing to pay is called “supply and demand”, not “dumping”. Maybe you should attack all those countries that will not pay a high enough price to support your bankrupt U.S. shale industry. Just look at the balance sheets and stock prices of those companies before the foreign competition started so-called “dumping” their products; the bond holders were keeping the frackers afloat, and they are paying dearly for that privilege. By the way, there is nothing that Mr. Trump can do to salvage the U.S. oil shale industry. Save your money and build some nuclear reactors.

    • Mr. Pool: In this string, 10 of 15 posts are yours. You seem to be talking to yourself. Do you find that interesting?
      Middleton’s posts indicate good insight into oil & gas issues, both were at a low price ebb due to production. My guess is, he’s seen busts before and is prepared even though nobody saw this coming. This bust was caused by the insane ChiCom-19 and worsened by Putin’s manipulation, do you think that’s a normal market?

        • Mr. Pool: Irrelevant? Your odd desire to attack him is overbearing your reason. Did the Saudis just start producing oil in spring, 2020? Why didn’t they make US oil production by frac irrelevant in ’09, or ’10, or at anytime US production made the House of Saud and Russia less relevant to the US? My recollection is that they tried back then, being aware (as you seem to be unaware) that US production diminished their relevance, but they couldn’t drop the price enough to make frac uneconomical. Tried and failed to push US production down. Clearly, this latest gambit by Russia is an attempt to use ChiCom-19 financial panic (is that the word that triggered your inner troll?) to drive down US frac production, and Middleton’s spot on analysis is cause for US gov’t to react to Russia’s gambit.
          Your attempt to attack his credibility by saying his analysis is just a selfish “gov’t please save my job” is diminishing your own cred.

  17. My career was in the Postal Service; including seven years as a mail carrier.
    Every year, towards the end of summer, it was easy to know which days kids started school.

    Typically, the smaller school system started classes before the public school system.
    Their contributions to overall noise was a recognizable decline.

    Public school system followed soon after, leaving a notable eerie silence.
    It would take me two weeks to get used to the quiet.

    Human activity causes seismic and sonic noise.
    One wonders just how the CO₂ alarmists separate out the seismic and sonic pressure waves?
    Especially those temperature stations located in high human caused seismic and sonic noise locations; aka urban airports.

    What I thought odd, was I could never tell when the schools let out; unless there were kids running around outside.

  18. Yet another consequence from the Wuhan virus. The US biofuels industry is seeking a ‘bailout’, primarily from the demand crash in the markets for corn based ethyl alcohol additives to gasoline, but lobbying for a thick bailout schmeer over the bigger biofuels bagel also.

    I understand and commiserate with corn farmers that have become dependent on the ethyl alcohol market, as an aid for propping up corn prices. That said, let’s be honest, folks. Biofuels are an artificially created, artificially priced, non-competitive market, enforced and sustained only by dubious government mandates, regulations, and subsidies, and partially predicated on the fraud known as man made ‘climate change’. This is a fundamentally artificial and economically unsustainable market. As such, Biofuels are failing because of their own inescapably inherent weaknesses. Given our low cost, plentiful national supply and reserves of traditional ‘fossil’ fuels, the artificially created biofuels markets have wasted enormous resources that would have been better spent on meeting real, credible threats and needs. Even more insidious, the craven politicians behind this have made our corn farmers increasingly dependent on continuing their venal fraud. Real disasters have a way of focusing attention on real priorities and exposing the unnecessary. Biofuels are unnecessary waste. This may not be the ideal moment to ‘lance this festering boil’…. but it has to be done.

  19. It isn’t Fracking that causes the earthquakes (as far as anyone has measured), it’s the injection wells in certain places that inject waste water mostly from fracking. This is a well established relationship, but it only occurs in certain locations where the geology is sensitive to it. Oklahoma has several good examples of clear relationships of waste-water injection and small earthquakes.

    It is interesting that most people never even think of Oklahoma as seismically active. Oklahoma has a lot of small earthquakes every year, and that was before drilling ever even started.

    • Regulations about injection wells that have been put into effect recently have reduced the frequency of earthquakes in Oklahoma. Most of these quakes occur in north central Oklahoma, which is mostly rural. Most of them cause very little if any damage. We had one, several years ago, that even I felt (slightly) here in Eastern Oklahoma. It was a 5.2 magnitude, one of the largest in recorded history. It did very little damage. And we haven’t had anything even close to it since.

  20. I used to go to school in Belgium, a place called Tevuren. It was nice. Belgium has the largest lit road network in the EU.

  21. Death toll: USA: 9483 World: 68,472 at 2:30 UTC (April 6)
    ..
    USA: 9618
    World: 69,456
    ..
    Your calculated percentage has changed.

    • Your calculated percentage has not changed

      Fixed that for you.

      Even rounding the USA death total up to 10K and
      10K/329,000,000 still (rounds) to 0.0%

      It would have to climb a lot higher (much greater than 10x) before it stops rounding to 0.0%

      That’s not to minimize the loss of life, but simply to put it into perspective.

  22. Mr. Dave Middleton, can you answer me a question:?

    When someone dies as a result of the coronavirus, does the fact that his/her death is hidden by rounding error mean that that is not significant?

    • It’s no more, or less, significant than the myriad other ailments that kill 0.0% of Americans. We don’t self-immolate our economy in response to the myriad.

      • Good answer.

        I would add that if Saudi Arabia can make you irrelevant as Mr. Pool suggested, and you are very much alive, responding and answering questions, then death ought to have some significant power on relevancy.

        • As WWII pilots used to say, you can tell when you are over the target because you start taking flak.

    • It’s significant for his family but I don’t care and if gets a disease too bad and if I can something that might possibly prevent that (according to some model), but I don’t feel like doing it for some reason, then too bad – for him. I am not into modeling, not even into the modeling Trump was into.

      It’s the absolute final answer if someone tells me my choices may kill, very very very indirectly, some immuno-suppressed person: Too. Bad.

      Your health is your problem and none of my business.

      Oh, and I never kiss a baby or visit people for no absolute reason while ill.

  23. On a positive note, it appears that cases of Wuhan virus in Houston have peaked and likely in Harris County also. NYC is showing evidence of peaking and, contrary to what Mr. Pool says, flu and pneumonia cases and deaths are falling because of isolation as one would expect.

  24. Frac on… except that the Institute for Energy Economic Financial Analysis (IEEFA) study said that taking 34 major fraccing companies, they spent $189 B more than they earned from 2010 – 2019. Why would you want them to frac on while making massive losses of that scale?

    • All companies with less than a 50% profit margin spend more than they earn.

      Most, if not all, oil companies lost money (negative earnings) from 2014-2016, when oil was dropping from over $100/bbl to ~$30/bbl… But most of them managed to continue drilling, frac’ing and producing oil wells because: 1) there is a demand for crude oil; and 2) they were able to maintain positive operating cash flow.

      If the operators of tight/shale oil fields stopped drilling, frac’ing and producing oil, the US would quickly find itself, once again, dependent on foreign, often hostile, nations for 2/3 of the crude oil we need to keep our economy running.

      • David, I admire all your posts but your answer is wrong.
        An individual company is there to make money for its shareholders. Some sort of strategic issue (“US would quickly find itself dependent on foreign hostile…….oil we need”) is not a reason for a fraccer CEO to tell his/her shareholders we’re going to produce at a loss.
        You are mixing government strategy with individual company profit motive.

        • Keith, you post is what is wrong. He didn’t list it as a reason. You are (either disingenuously or due to a complete failure of reading comprehension) mixing what he did list as reasons (enumerated with the numbers 1 and 2) in the second paragraph with his statements in the third paragraph about what the results of stopping production would be (note the word IF at the start of the paragraph. reasons generally don’t start with the word if, as you’ll note from the complete lack of the word if in both of his enumerated reasons in the second paragraph).

        • Keith,

          If an oil company (“shale” player or conventional) stops drilling, they eventually go out of business. Right now, everybody is scaling back expenses to remain cash flow positive in a $30/bbl environment. A lot less wells will be drilled and production will decline until prices improve.

          So… An oil company can’t totally stop drilling. Even if they post negative earnings, they can stay in business as long as their operation cash flow is positive. This is business strategy.

  25. They should be able to eliminate background noise by measuring that first. Or maybe not.

    Good article and comments

  26. My understanding is that NY has mandated that any patient who dies WITH ChiCom-19, has ChiCom-19 listed as the cause of death. Have a heart condition and die from an MI, but test positive for ChiCom-19? Your death is reposted as caused by ChiCom. Have pancreatic cancer and a ChiCom-19 positive test? You will be listed as dying from ChiCom-19. Run down by a Grub Hub driver, while an asymptomatic ChiCom-19 carrier? Yep. ChiCom-19 killed you. Blow your own brains out after being forced to read another trollpost while mildly sickened? Yep. You too are a ChiCom-19 fatality.

    It’s meaningless to talk about rounding errors when the books have been cooked. Someone is going to great lengths to support this narrative of ChiCom-19’s lethality.

  27. best part of the Travis Tritt video?

    the headline on the newspaper in the coffee shop scene references Donald Trump paying off Ivanka during their divorce…

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