Wednesday, August 23, 2017

What #Energy Sources Power the World?

#FossilFuels represent about two-thirds of electricity usage; #Nuclear 10%; #Hydroelectric Power is the king of #Renewables

From Visual Capitalist:

What Energy Sources Power the World?

There are many types of maps out there, but one of the most telling ones is a simple satellite image of the Earth at night.

On these powerful images, the darkness is a blank canvas for the bright city lights that represent the vast extent of human geography. The bright spots help us understand the distribution of population, as well as what areas of the world are generally wealthier and more urban. Meanwhile, the big dark spots – such as over the wilderness in northern Canada, the Amazon basin, or in Niger – show areas that are not densely populated or more rural

The image above is based on this principle. It comes from NASA, and is a composite made from 400 separate satellite images from 2012. 

How Are These Lights Powered?

But what if we could differentiate, by "shutting off" lights that are powered by certain electricity sources?

Today's visualizations come from a nifty interactive website put together by  , and they breakdown the world's electricity by source: fossil fuels, renewables, or nuclear fission.

Fossil Fuels

To start, here are the places on Earth that are powered by fossil fuels.

(Click image to see larger version)
Fossil Fuels only

Globally, fossil fuels represent about two-thirds of electricity usage. It's also worth noting that fossil fuels also make up the majority of non-electrical sources needed for things like automobiles, aircraft, and ships, which are not shown on the map. 

For further interest, we have previously shown the evolution over time of total U.S. energy usage, as well as a detailed breakdown of current U.S. usage – both which are still dominated by fossil fuels such as oil, natural gas, and coal.

Nuclear Only

Here are the places on Earth powered by nuclear fission.

(Click image to see larger version)

Nuclear only

Nuclear makes up about 10% of all global electricity usage – and France is the world's most reliant country, getting about 74% of its power mix from nuclear. Also noteworthy is Japan, which has switched its major electrical source from nuclear to fossil fuels since the Fukushima incident in 2011.

Nuclear is a major source of energy in the rest of Europe as well.

Belgium (51%), Sweden (43%), Hungary (51%), Slovakia (55%), Czech Republic (35%), Slovenia (33%), Ukraine (43%), and Finland (33%) all draw significant amounts of their electricity from nuclear reactors.


Last, but not least, are renewables.

(Click image to see larger version)

It's important to remember here that hydroelectricity is the largest renewable energy source by far, and that countries like Canada and Brazil rely on hydro extensively. 

Outside of hydro, Italy is a leader in solar generation (6% of all electricity). Meanwhile, just eight countries host over 80% of all installed wind power: France, Canada, United Kingdom, Spain, India, Germany, USA, and China.

Finally, it's worth noting that there are four smaller countries that get all, or nearly all, of their electricity from renewable sources. Those include Iceland (72% hydro, 28% geothermal), Albania (100% hydro), Paraguay (100% hydro), and Norway (97% hydro, 2% fossil fuels, and 1% other).

See the nifty interactive animation here:

Saturday, December 10, 2016

#Mexico - Analysis #Energy from EIA

Energy Information Administration (EIA) Logo - Need Help? 202-586-8800

Mexico is a major producer of petroleum and other liquids and is among the largest sources of U.S. oil imports, accounting for 9% of U.S. crude oil imports in 2015. While Mexico’s oil production has steadily decreased since 2005, they remain the fourth largest producer in the Americas after the United States, Canada and Brazil. While the petroleum sector’s role has significantly decreased in recent years, it still generated 6% of the country’s export earnings in 2015. In 2014 in an effort to address declines in domestic oil production, the Mexican government enacted constitutional reforms that ended the 75-year monopoly of Petroleós Mexicanos (PEMEX), the state-owned oil company on domestic oil.

For more information on the Mexico’s energy sector, visit  

Mexico - International - Analysis - U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA)

Monday, October 24, 2016

The sorry state of #Venezuela's #oil fields

The decrepit state of aging oil fields is a crucial reason why Venezuela’s output is falling faster than that of any other major oil producer bar insurgency-riven Nigeria, despite having the world’s largest reserves.

Great article from Anatoly Kurmanaev on the sorry state of Venezuela's oil fields.

Venezuelan Oil Is Largely Staying in Ground or Going Up in Smoke

Anatoly Kurmanaev | Photographs by Miguel Gutiérrez for The Wall Street Journal

PUNTA DE MATA, Venezuela—This fading oil town has an eerie glow at night, illuminated by dozens of oil wells burning off precious oil and gas for lack of functioning equipment to process it.

Making matters worse, for every barrel of light crude burned off at Punta de Mata’s wells, Venezuela needs to spend dollars importing a barrel of diluent to mix with the very heavy oil produced in the country’s south.

“This is pure mismanagement,” said Carlos Bellorin, an oil analyst at IHS Inc. in London. “There’s no other rational explanation for such waste.”

The decrepid state of aging fields like Punta de Mata, which provide the bulk of Venezuela’s revenues, is a crucial reason why the country’s oil output is falling faster than that of any other major oil producer bar insurgency-riven Nigeria.

Venezuelan crude production shrank 11% to 2.3 million barrels a day in a year to September, according to government figures, and the consulting firm Medley & Associates expects the fall to accelerate in the next 12 months.


Overall, the number of working oil rigs in Venezuela declined by a quarter in the 12 months to September, according to Houston-based oil-field-service company Baker Hughes Inc. There are now more rigs drilling in Oman, where proven reserves are just 1.7% of Venezuela’s.

“I don’t think this government will be able to stabilize production even if the oil prices start to rise,” said Luisa Palacios, Medley’s Venezuela analyst....

Oilmen in Punta de Mata, once Venezuela’s major oil-producing hub, blame Venezuela’s production decline on government expropriations, corruption and collapsing wages that left state oil company Petróleos de Venezuela SA, known as PdVSA, increasingly hobbled.

The international oil service companies including U.S.-based Schlumberger Ltd., Halliburton Co. and Baker Hughes, which once drilled Punta de Mata’s wells and managed the flow of associated gas, are almost all gone, either squeezed out by billions of dollars of unpaid invoices or their local assets expropriated by the government.

As foreign companies began to idle drilling rigs and skilled workers left, output at the Northern Monagas Basin, which includes Punta de Mata, plunged two-thirds in the past decade, the steepest decline in the country, according to PdVSA’s regional managers.

Hit by the cash crunch, PdVSA is now trying to postpone $5-billion-worth of maturing bonds for three years, a move rating agency Standard & Poor’s said is “tantamount to default.”

PdVSA has already practically defaulted on its domestic debts. The company owed $19 billion to contractors—who provide everything from rigs to lunches—at the end of last year, according to its latest annual report.

After writing off $500 million in the country, Schlumberger, the world’s biggest oil-services provider, began to wind down operations at mature fields in June. It fired hundreds of workers, mothballed some rigs and said it would only work with PdVSA when prepaid in cash.

“Schlumberger just threw in the towel,” said Hector Navarro, a PdVSA production manager in Northern Monagas. “They left us to fend for ourselves.”

Earlier this year, a services subsidiary of Italian oil giant Eni SpA, called Saipem, removed its rigs from Northern Monagas and dismissed about 300 workers, according to the national oil union FUTPV. Saipem’s finance chief told investors in July that the company had “reduced almost to zero our operating exposure to Venezuela.”

As of this year, Halliburton will only drill for PdVSA when it is partnered with a foreign shareholder and has a better chance at getting paid, according to two company engineers in Venezuela.
Read the article online here:Venezuelan Oil Is Largely Staying in Ground or Going Up in Smoke - WSJ

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Cheap shipping rates are redrawing the Global #Oil Market

Cheap shipping rates are redrawing long established oil-trade routes, with some vessels spending weeks at sea 

From Norway to the Bahamas, from Algeria to Australia.

Ultra-low crude prices
combined with cheap shipping rates are encouraging a host of exotic new
oil trading routes that wouldn't look out of place in the latest travel

exporters are tapping into new markets as they attempt to work through a
glut in crude supplies that’s reshaping oil market economics and
redrawing decades-old shipping routes.

Read the whole article on Bloomberg here:  The Crazy, Mixed-Up Global Oil Market

The MasterEnergy Blog


Wednesday, June 1, 2016

#MustRead! #Vitol: How the World's Largest #Oil Trader Makes Billions

In its 50-year history, the publicity-shy energy company hasn't seen an annual loss. Now business is becoming more competitive than ever.

An excellent piece on the trading giant that is Vitol from Bloomberg's Javier Blas and Andy Hoffman

Inside Vitol: How the World's Largest Oil Trader Makes Billions

Friday, April 1, 2016

#SaudiArabia to Sell Stake in #Aramco by 2018

Saudi Arabia plans to sell a stake “of less than 5%” in the parent of its state-owned oil company, the kingdom’s deputy crown prince said, revealing details of a listing that could make it the world’s biggest publicly traded firm.

Saudi Arabia to Sell Stake in Parent of State Oil Giant by 2018 - Bloomberg

Saudi Arabia plans to sell a stake “of less than 5 percent” in the parent of its state-owned oil company, the kingdom’s deputy crown prince said, revealing details of a listing that could make it the world’s biggest publicly traded firm.
In an interview in Riyadh, Prince Mohammed bin Salman said his advisers were working on a plan to offer shares in all of Saudi Arabian Oil Co. rather than just some of its refining subsidiaries. Saudi Aramco, as the world’s biggest oil exporter is known, would be listed on the domestic stock exchange as early as 2017 and no later than 2018, said the prince, the king’s son and second in line to the throne.

“The mother company will be offered to the public as well as a number of its subsidiaries,” the prince, who heads Aramco’s supreme council, told Bloomberg in a five-hour conversation.
By committing to sell shares in the parent bin Salman will give investors a stake in the world’s biggest oil fields and expose the assets that underpin the kingdom’s entire economy to unprecedented scrutiny. Aramco controls about 10 times the oil reserves held by Exxon Mobil Corp. and based on a conservative valuation of $10 a barrel, the company could be worth more than $2.5 trillion.
Saudi Aramco’s listing is the centerpiece of a broader economic transformation that the kingdom is planning in response to a global oil glut that has driven down crude prices and slashed revenue from its most valuable export. Aramco pumps more than 10 million barrels a day of crude, exceeding the domestic output of all U.S. oil companies combined.
The prince’s plans also call for Aramco to become the world’s largest oil refiner, overtaking Exxon, mainly by adding capacity in Asia, as well as pushing further into petrochemical production.
“We will also announce Aramco’s new strategy and will transform it from an oil and gas company to an energy-industrial company,” he said.

Bourse Listing

The plan calls for listing a small stake on the Tadawul, as the Arab world’s largest bourse is known, the prince said. The size of the stake hasn’t yet been decided, but he said: “We’re talking about less than 5 percent.”
The rest of Aramco would still be owned by the government but controlled through a sovereign wealth fund, which as a result of the share sale would become the world’s richest.
The Public Investment Fund, which holds stakes in local companies including petrochemical giant Saudi Basic Industries Corp., would eclipse sovereign wealth funds in Norway and Abu Dhabi.
“Undoubtedly, it will be larger than the largest fund on earth. We will surpass $2 trillion,” the prince said.

IPO Options

In January, Aramco said officials were studying two main routes for an initial public offering: an IPO of its parent and the listing of a bundle of its oil-refining subsidiaries. The sale of shares in the parent company -- the route now signaled by the kingdom’s deputy crown prince -- would open the door for private investors to own a piece of the world’s largest oil fields.

Read the rest of the article on BLOOMBERG here: 
Saudi Arabia to Sell Stake in Parent of State Oil Giant by 2018

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Net #debt of publicly listed #oil & #gas cos has nearly tripled in last 10 years to $549bn, it's no longer so easy

Just a few years ago, when oil prices were $100 a barrel, banks were lining up to give international oil explorers access to billions of dollars to finance projects. Now the money is drying up, as oil prices stay mired in a prolonged funk. 

Oil Explorers Face Challenge to Secure Financing as Oil Prices Fall

Selina Williams

LONDON—Just a few years ago, when oil sold for about $100 a barrel, banks here were lining up to give international oil explorers access to billions of dollars to finance new drilling and projects.

But as oil prices stay mired in a funk, the money is drying up.

Senior executives from companies such as Tullow Oil TUWOY PLC and Cairn Energy CRNCY PLC have been meeting with their bankers for a biannual review of the loans that allow them to keep  drilling and building out projects.
For many European companies, it has been a nail-biting experience, as banks worry about the growing pile of debt taken on by oil companies with little or no profits. Several companies said they expect their ability to tap credit lines to be diminished after the reviews.

Some lenders have brought in teams that specialize in corporate restructuring to scrutinize  companies’ balance sheets, spending and assets, though not at Tullow or Cairn, a person familiar with the matter said. In the past, the reviews were generally conducted solely by banks’ energy specialists.

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