Editor’s note: Each Friday, Talk Business & Politics provides “Energy In-depth,” a round-up of energy and regulatory news.
U.S. ENERGY OFFICIALS DISCUSS POWER GRID MODERNIZATION EFFORTS
Representatives from the U.S. Department of Energy and several of its national laboratories gave presentations on Thursday concerning the modernization of the nation’s electric power grid at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s April meeting. Some of the topics discussed at the forum included grid security threats, the nation’s changing energy mix, challenges of extreme catastrophic events such as a terrorist strike or hurricane, and new energy market opportunities.
The presentations were made by presentations of DOE, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Idaho National Laboratory, Sandia National Laboratories, and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. To view the presentations, click here.
OPEC CHIEF SIGNALS THAT CARTEL MAY FREEZE OIL OUTPUT IN JUNE
Secretary General Abdalla S. El-Badri said Thursday that the global crude oil market cartel needs to try and return to a more “balanced situation” where energy commodity investors feel more comfortable and confident in making the necessary long-term investments, and not allow supply to outstrip demand. Ed-Bardi’s remarks, delivered at the 17th International Oil Summit in Paris, led to speculation that the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) could halt or lower crude oil at the 13-nation oil producing group’s next meeting in June.
The OPEC chief also forecasted in his presentation the global energy demand to increase by almost 50% by 2040, with non-fossil fuel energy expected to make up about 22% of the global energy mix. To view El-Badri’s presentation and entire transcript of his Paris speech, click here.
SCHLUMBERGER CEO: OIL AND GAS INDUSTRY OPERATING IN ‘FULL-SCALE CASH CRISIS’
Schlumberger Chairman and CEO Paal Kibsgaard said Thursday that the ongoing decline in global activity in the oil and gas industry and the rate of activity disruption has “reached unprecedented levels as the industry displayed clear signs of operating in a full-scale cash crisis.”
Kibsgaard made his remarks on Thursday after the oilfield service giant reported first quarter losses at just over $1 billion. The global supplier of drilling technology, integrated project management and information solutions to oil and gas company’s like ExxonMobil, Shell and BP also reported that quarterly revenues fell 36% to $6.5 billion compared to $10.2 billion a year ago.
Schlumberger, which has major offices in Houston, Paris and The Hague, Netherlands, closed on its $15 billion merger of rival Cameron International on April 1. The global oilfield service conglomerate has pared nearly a quarter of its global workforce, or nearly 35,000 workers, over the past two years. Schlumberger operates a regional office in Conway that supports Southwestern Energy and other natural gas drillings in Arkansas. The company has been mum on how many jobs in Arkansas have been downsized.