The Hidden Oil Gem for U.S. Oil Exports
There’s a terrible quote that often comes to my mind.
It goes, “Thirty years from now there will be a huge amount of oil — and no buyers. Oil will be left in the ground.”
No buyers, huh?
These words came from an interview with a former Saudi oil minister in 2000. Sheikh Ahmed Zaki Yamani might’ve been on to something. His thinking was that new discoveries, new technology, and strong E&P activity will crash prices within five years... and it looks like he was a few years off of predicting the U.S. shale boom.
Yet this former oil minister went beyond that. He also predicted that alternative technology like fuel cells would cut gasoline consumption by 100% by 2010.
But did he go too far?
I believe my colleague Luke Burgess hit the nail on the head earlier this week when he told you that nothing happens without energy.
Allow me to reiterate that: nothing!
Now, when it comes to fueling the world’s energy needs, most investors I’ve talked to hold the same opinion, more or less: oil is on its way out.
I know the growth stats aren’t as sexy for crude as they are for some of today’s renewable sources.
After all, oil consumption in the U.S. has been relatively flat for the last 30 years.
Truth is, U.S. oil consumption is projected to decline slightly over the next few decades.
And that, dear reader, makes me even more bullish on the U.S. energy sector.
Go Deep or Go Home
I honestly don’t think the average person understands how much crude the world consumes.
We’re talking about 100 million barrels every single day.
If the average barrel holds 42 U.S. gallons of crude, it’ll weigh roughly 300 pounds. In total, the world guzzles approximately 150,000 TONS of black gold.
That’s the equivalent of about 666 Statues of Liberty.
The concern isn’t over demand growth in the United States; it’s from countries like China and India. Oil demand in the Asia Pacific has skyrocketed since the 1980s and has grown to well over 30 million barrels per day.
To put that into perspective, the U.S. consumes about 20 million barrels per day.
And if there’s one thing we can count on, it’s that the U.S. will find a way to tap into international energy markets.
Does anyone else remember what happened for our LNG exporters a couple years ago?
One of the biggest issues was how U.S. LNG could reach growing demand in Asia. The supertankers that shipped LNG were simply too large to pass through the Panama Canal.
What was the solution?
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All it took was a little work and about $5 billion to widen the canal.
Last year, our LNG exports increased 278% over 2016’s volumes.
And thanks to that key investment in the Panama Canal, U.S. LNG exports to China increased five-fold!
We shipped 103 billion cubic feet last year to China, and all of it came from the Sabine Pass terminal in Louisiana.
Now it’s oil’s turn...
I Love it When a Plan Comes Together… But What’s Next?
More and more U.S. crude is flowing out of the Gulf of Mexico, and I can’t stress enough how early it is in the export game right now.
Take a look for yourself:
The surge at the tail end of the chart took place the moment Congress lifted the 40-year ban on U.S. oil exports. It took less than three years for companies to boost our oil exports to 2 million barrels per day last May.
The real question, however, is if you noticed the hidden shale gem found right next to this burgeoning bastion of oil exports.
You can see the Eagle Ford story taking shape, too, can’t you?
According to the numbers at the EIA, more than 1.4 million barrels of oil are extracted from this shale play in South Texas every day.
For the record, it’s our second-largest oil-producing region in the United States.
It’s bigger than the Bakken.
And it’s closer to those export terminals along the Gulf of Mexico than the Permian Basin.
This last point may be the reason BP just shelled out $10.5 billion for another shot at a shale fortune.
Over the next few weeks, we’ll walk through the best drillers in the Eagle Ford, as well as a few little-known drillers that are making big moves there.
Until next time,
A true insider in the energy markets, Keith is one of few financial reporters to have visited the Alberta oil sands. His research has helped thousands of investors capitalize from the rapidly changing face of energy. Keith connects with hundreds of thousands of readers as the Managing Editor of Energy & Capital as well as Investment Director of Angel Publishing's Energy Investor. For years, Keith has been providing in-depth coverage of the Bakken, the Haynesville Shale, and the Marcellus natural gas formations — all ahead of the mainstream media. For more on Keith, go to his editor's page.
Energy Demand will Increase 58% Over the Next 25 Years
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