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Thursday, June 15, 2006


Going...Going...

The picture you see is the construction of another offshore oil production/drilling platform at Stavanger, Norway.

Nice!...

Wish it was here!...

The reality is now that, we have about six days left to get Exxon/Mobil, Chevron and the rest of the consortium back to the bargaining table and get a deal signed for the development of the Hebron-Ben Nevis oil field.

Reading an article in the New York Times on the stand that the Newfoundland and Labrador government has taken in negotiations has got me thinking about the implications of what is going to happen in the immediate St.John's area in the coming months,let alone the rest of the province. Already, I've noticed that the "for sale" signs are on the lawns a little longer and real estate agents are starting to have backed up inventories of properties that can't be moved.
You might have to register with the Times to get it.
See Danny's interview with the New York Times here:http://www.nytimes.com/glogin?URI=http://www.nytimes.com/2006/06/14/business/worldbusiness/14oil.html&OQ=_rQ3D1&OP=35854415Q2FQ27Q3BVzQ27RQ51!HbQ51Q51pkQ27kQ3CQ3CQ7BQ27Q3CQ7BQ27-Q2AQ27zPHatVHHQ27Q3BQ51b8RzPHatVHHQ27-Q2AQ51a8Q2B)pF8

It's the last line of the story that gets to me and I'll quote:
"I'm independently wealthy, so I'm not in the pay of any particular group or industry.I'm able to take tough stands"...

Trouble here is that, the common joe here is not independently wealthy,but we'd certainly like to have the chance".....

It's getting just a little bit slower in the taxi too...

If the deal gets shelved in six days time, cabbies in the St. John's area will have another couple of dry years where no one cares. I'm sure they remember the days of heading up to YYT and picking up the odd $140.00 fare to Bull Arm from someone freshly landed. The construction jobs at Bull Arm kept the Avalon and surrounding areas humming.

If the deal dies, so does the four billion dollar construction project for a new offshore platform.

My sources in Texas tell me it would have been the first of two.

Work gone, the chance to advance the province and to keep some of our kids home for a change. The chance to do something POWERFUL for a section of rural Newfoundland and Labrador. The longer it sits under the waves, the more likely we'll lose the construction project and the more likely that the companies will "glory-hole" the project and use the Hibernia platform to get the stuff up from the seabed.

Gone is another opportunity to advance the cause of building an oil industry, but perhaps Danny wants to do the deal on his own?....Lower Churchill...Hebron...What's next?...Orphan Basin?

Just where does the government draw the line on who has the right to the resource?

It's six days and counting...

Tuesday, June 13, 2006


It's the Final Countdown...

School is out this year on June 21st, not long away now, and it's been a heck of a year.
God knows it's been a hard one both for students, teachers, and parents.
For some it is also a day of reckoning for,when the end of the year comes, there won't be anything left to hold back some oil company employees who traded houses in places like Calgary,Alberta to start a new life amidst the prospects of founding another major oil field off the coast of Newfoundland and Labrador.
For when the school year ends, so will the prospects of those same families staying in Newfoundland. The arguement has been made that, maybe the Premier was playing a little too hard when it came to negotiations for royalties and other benefits from our resources and that's what has caused all the problems. The Hebron-Ben Nevis deal will die a slow and inglamorous death at the hands of a few who pushed just too hard.
What I hear is that the provincial government drove hard to have royalties paid out on the oil type there at $40 a barrel US while the oil companies agreed to $50 bucks a barrel, a $10 a barrel difference. That's what might have caused the province to lose a $4 billion dollar offshore platform that was just a little smaller than the Hibernia platform itself.
That's not all...
My sources in Texas also tell me that there was to be a second platform constructed immediately after the first was completed...
How much did we lose?....Really...
While an Irish billionaire explores the Placentia Bay area for a suitable site for a refinery and the world thirsts for our resource, did we let loose the dogs to play in someone elses yard?
Did we let the "kids out from school" without learning from them ourselves that, we could have had so much more in the way of benefits like keeping our kids here to work. Did we founder away our human resource to keep our natural resources in the ground?
Has the chance for a major step into the petroleum development field been thwarted by $10 bucks a barrel that couldn't have been negotiated to rise if the price of oil again rose along with it?
We've forgotten about escalator clauses my friends, and a St.John's lawyer was the first one to forget.
We've got until June 21/06 to get negotiations up and going again or it's going to be hard times on the Rock in another year or so. Get the adults in government and Chevron back to the table now before the kids get out of school because if not, we'll lose a lot more than royalties on $10 bucks a barrel.
As of today, we've got 7 days left to save it ...

Thursday, June 08, 2006


Al-Zarqawi Pays His Price

The man at the left got bagged today by the US military in a precision strike that was aimed at taking this character out in the first place.
Responsible for Gawd knows how many deaths, alledgedly he also was leading insurgents in attacks on Iraqi oil infrastructure.
Funny darned thing...
Every time you get a little positive news in the oil markets,there's always something that screws things up to the consumer.
When his "passing" was first announced this morning, oil prices, in electronic trading, lost well over $1.50 US on a barrel.

Lo and behold, the New York Mercantile Exchange opens and what happens?...
Oil is down today by .47 to it's close at $70.35US a barrel.

Gawd love the whole notion of security of supply and terrorism concerns that were expressed in the markets overseas this morning. Gone was the larger than expected drop that should have been seen in the markets in North America.
Gone is the notion that a "little good news" like this should have to the consumer and, gone should be the notion that we sit and not see anything done about it.

Is the exchange in New York the problem with pricing in itself?

I dunno about that but, I think we all know that there are huge commissions being paid out to keep them up!

Regards,

George