oil & gas

Implications of the Drop in Crude Prices

Sub-$70/barrel oil is rapidly changing the operational climate for US oil and gas production. As highlighted in the December 4th Houston Business Journal article, “Oil price drops means businesses need to mitigate risk now,” a reevaluation of financial risk and mitigation measures is necessary to remain viable and profitable in this new environment. The article focuses at the CFO level of financial evaluation and posed the following hypothesis: “The survivors will be those producers that […]

Oil Theft in the Eagle Ford Shale

Oil field theft is not new, but with the rapid development in the Eagle Ford Shale, the opportunity for extensive and pervasive theft has expanded.  Today’s article in the San Antonio Business Journal highlights the impactthat such theft has on not just the companies from whomthe oil was stolen, but also the community as a whole.  Indications from law enforcement and oilfield history are that this is far from an isolated case.  However, oil field […]

Critical Analysis of Pipeline Safety and Security in Mexico

When it comes to pipeline safety and security, our two neighbors provide an interesting and illustrative contrast. To our north, Canada’s oil and gas industry’s safety and security standards, with regards to pipelines, mirror and even surpass those of the U.S. The oil and gas sector is privately owned and operated and government’s involvement, though substantial, is limited to necessary oversight and regulation of the industry and its infrastructure. Our southern neighbor, Mexico, tells a […]

The Vulnerability of South Texas Pipelines

I have often said that opportunities along the U.S.–Mexico border are as vast as it landscape. However, those opportunities are not without risk. Texas Railroad Commissioner David Porter’s most recent press release highlights the real threat that exists in South Texas [Porter Voices Concerns Over South Texas Pipelines Commissioner Visits Sites along Texas-Mexico Border]. Commissioner Porter is correct in his assessment that “the unfettered flow of illegal aliens complicates [oil and gas industry] efforts” to secure […]

Security Risk: The Missing Ingredient in Pipeline Integrity Management

“When it comes to pipelines, security is today where corrosion was 20 years ago.” This candid assessment, from Phillip Nidd, Vice President of Operations at Dynamic Risk USA, really distilled our impressions and understanding of security’s role at the 29 September – 3 October 2014 International Pipeline Conference in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. The remark came in response to our question about the use of pipeline ILI (Inline Inspection) tools to detect and assess security threats. […]