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Repairs at W Australia's Wheatstone LNG may take weeks

  • Market: Natural gas
  • 13/06/24

The platform servicing Western Australia's 8.9mn t/yr Wheatstone LNG may take weeks to return on line, operator Chevron said, as it conducts repairs on the offshore platform's fuel gas system.

Operations at the platform were interrupted from 10 June, disrupting supply to Wheatstone's LNG production and domestic gas facilities located near the Pilbara region town of Onslow.

The firm has started repairs on the Wheatstone platform, which is expected to be completed in coming weeks, a Chevron spokesperson said. LNG and domestic gas production will resume, following the safe completion of the repair works.

The WA Gas Bulletin Board's medium-term capacity outlook operated by the Australian Energy Market Operator shows Wheatstone's domestic plant off line until 26 June, meaning supply could return on 27 June.

The initial four-day disruption was expected to reduce production by 3-4 cargoes. But it is unclear how many more cargoes will be lost should supply return on 27 June as planned.

The exact date of restart at the facility could be anytime from 19-23 June, an offtaker with knowledge of the situation said.

Spot prices have risen again owing to the disruption. The ANEA price — the Argus assessment for spot LNG deliveries to northeast Asia for first-half July — was last assessed at $12.40/mn Btu on 13 June, up by 11¢/mn Btu from a day earlier and higher by about 69¢/mn Btu from two weeks ago.


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24/07/24

Repsol 2Q profit doubles but cash flow turns negative

Repsol 2Q profit doubles but cash flow turns negative

Madrid, 24 July (Argus) — Spanish integrated Repsol's profit more than doubled on the year in the second quarter, as lower one-time losses and better results in the upstream and customer divisions more than offset a weaker refining performance. But its cash flow turned negative as it completed the buyout of its UK joint venture with China's state-controlled Sinopec, raised investments and experienced weaker refining margins. Net debt was sharply higher, largely reflecting share buy-backs. Repsol has said it will acquire and cancel a further 20mn of its own shares before the end of the year, which will probably further increase its debt. It completed a 40mn buy-back in the first half of the year. Repsol's profit climbed to €657mn ($714mn) in April-June from €308mn a year earlier, when earnings were hit by a large provision against an arbitration ruling that obliged it to acquire Sinopec's stake in their UK joint venture. Excluding this and other special items, such as a near threefold reduction in the negative inventory effect to €85mn, Repsol's adjusted profit increased by 4pc on the year to €859mn. Repsol confirmed the fall in refining margins and upstream production reported earlier in July . Liquids output increased by 3pc on the year to 214,000 b/d, and gas production fell by 4pc to 2.1bn ft³/d. Adjusted upstream profit increased by 4pc on the year to €427mn. The higher crude production and a 13pc rise in realised prices to $78.6/bl more than offset lower gas production and prices, which fell by 6pc to $3.1/'000 ft³ over the same period. Adjusted profit at Repsol's industrial division — which includes 1mn b/d of Spanish and Peruvian refining capacity, an olefins-focused petrochemicals division, and a gas and oil product trading business — was down by 16pc on the year at €288mn. Profit fell at the 117,000 b/d Pampilla refinery in Peru after a turnaround and weak refining margins, and there was lower income from gas trading. Spanish refining profit rose on a higher utilisation rate and gains in oil product trading. Repsol's customer-focused division reported adjusted profit of €158mn in April-June, 7pc higher on the year thanks to higher retail electricity margins, a jump in sales from an expanded customer base, higher margins in aviation fuels and higher sales volumes in lubricants. Repsol swung to a negative free cash flow, before shareholder remuneration and buy-backs, of €574mn in the second quarter, from a positive €392mn a year earlier. After shareholder remuneration, including the share buy-backs and dividends, Repsol had a negative cash position of €1.12bn compared with a positive €133mn a year earlier. Repsol's net debt more than doubled to €4.595bn at the end of June from €2.096bn on 31 December 2023, reflecting the share buy-backs and new leases of equipment. By Jonathan Gleave Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

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Equinor 2Q profit supported by higher European output


24/07/24
News
24/07/24

Equinor 2Q profit supported by higher European output

London, 24 July (Argus) — Norway's state-controlled Equinor posted a small rise in profit on the year in the April-June period, as a lift in its European production offset lower gas prices. Equinor reported a profit of $1.87bn in the second quarter, up by 2.2pc on the year but down by 30pc from the first three months of 2024. The company paid two Norwegian corporation tax instalments, totalling $6.98bn, in the second quarter, compared with one in the first quarter. Equinor paid $7.85bn in tax in April-June in total. Its average liquids price in the second quarter was $77.6/bl, up by 10pc from the second quarter of 2023. But average gas prices for Equinor's Norwegian and US production fell in the same period by 17pc and 6pc, respectively. The company noted "strong operational performance and lower impact from turnarounds" on the Norwegian offshore, including new output from the Breidablikk field . Equinor's entitlement production was 1.92mn b/d of oil equivalent (boe/d) in April-June, up by 3pc on the year. The company cited "high production" from Norway's Troll and Oseberg fields in the second quarter, as well as new output from the UK's Buzzard field. But US output slid, owing to offshore turnarounds and "planned curtailments onshore to capture higher value when demand is higher", the company said. It estimates oil and gas production across 2024 will be "stable" compared with last year, while its renewable power generation is expected to increase by around 70pc across the same timespan. Equinor's share of power generation rose by 14pc on the year to 1.1TWh in April-June. Of this, 655GWh was renewables — almost doubling on the year — driven by new onshore wind capacity in Brazil and Poland. "Construction is progressing" on the UK's 1.2GW Dogger Bank A offshore windfarm , Equinor said. It is aiming for full commercial operations in the first half of 2025 at Dogger Bank A — a joint venture with UK utility SSE. Equinor was granted three new licences in June to develop CO2 storage in Norway and Denmark. The Norwegian licences — Albondigas and Kinno — together have CO2 storage potential of 10mn t/yr. The Danish onshore licence, for which Equinor was awarded a 60pc stake, has potential capacity of 12mn t/yr. Equinor has a goal of 30mn-50mn t/yr of CO2 transport and storage capacity by 2035. The company's scope 1 and 2 greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions amounted to 5.6mn t/CO2 equivalent (CO2e) in the first half of the year, edging lower from 5.8mn t/CO2e in January-June 2023. It also incrementally cut its upstream CO2 intensity, from 6.7 kg/boe across 2023, to 6.3 kg/boe in the first half of this year. Equinor has kept its ordinary cash dividend steady , at $0.35/share, and will continue the extraordinary cash dividend of $0.35/share for the second quarter. It will launch a third $1.6bn tranche of its share buyback programme on 25 July. By Georgia Gratton Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

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Gas discovery could extend Bolivia's export life


22/07/24
News
22/07/24

Gas discovery could extend Bolivia's export life

Sao Paulo, 22 July (Argus) — The estimated 1.7 Tcf of natural gas in Bolivia's Mayaya Centro-X1 field would expand the country's exporting capacity in 4-5 years but not much beyond that, according to market participants. The discovery — the largest find in Bolivia since 2005 and the first in the north of the country — was well-received in Bolivia and in neighboring countries. But some are skeptical about whether it actually holds 1.7 Tcf. "The government may be jumping to conclusions given the elements available so far," a hydrocarbons market consultant told Argus . Prior to the discovery, Bolivia was expected to cease exporting gas in 2030. By then, considering proved reserves, production will only be enough to supply domestic demand. Additionally, there are some logistics concerns, as the region around the Mayaya Centro-X1 field has no infrastructure for further exploration or pipeline transport systems. The mayor of the Bolivian capital La Paz, Iva Arias, said a hydrocarbons field would take 2-5 years to produce and start yielding royalties for the city. But if the reserves are indeed proven, the discovery would change Bolivia's natural gas reality, as its reserves dropped by around 70pc in the last decade. The expectations surrounding the find are added to the increasingly public animosity between President Luis Arce and former-president Evo Morales, his former boss. Both are claiming credit for the discovery and will use it to promote their 2025 presidential runs . Bolivia is still the largest exporters of natural gas to Brazil. State-controlled Petrobras and Bolivia's state-owned YPFB are partners in four Bolivian fields. Only four days prior to Mayaya Centro-X1 announcement, newly-appointed Petrobras chief executive Magda Chambriard visited Bolivia with Brazilan President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva and announced plans to invest $40mn to drill an exploratory well in San Telmo Norte in 2025. Brazilian company Flxus also plans to invest in Bolivian gas . By Betina Moura Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

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Australia’s Woodside to buy US LNG developer Tellurian


22/07/24
News
22/07/24

Australia’s Woodside to buy US LNG developer Tellurian

Sydney, 22 July (Argus) — Australian independent Woodside Energy is buying US LNG developer Tellurian, which is behind the planned 11mn t/yr Driftwood phase 1 project on the US Gulf coast. Woodside said the all-cash payment will position the firm as a global LNG powerhouse, with the purchase providing an "attractive entry" with more than $1bn spent on the Louisiana project to date. The deal values Tellurian at $1 a share with an implied value of $1.2bn. Driftwood's development plan envisions construction of five LNG production trains in four phases, totalling capacity of 27.6mn t/yr. Woodside is targeting completion of the Tellurian acquisition during October-December ahead of a final investment decision (FID) on Driftwood in January-March 2025, with its first LNG from 2029. The transaction adds scalable US LNG to Woodside's existing 10mn t/yr equity production in Australia, chief executive Meg O'Neill said on 22 July, with Driftwood complementing its existing output and enabling the company to better service customers while opening further marketing opportunities, including in the Atlantic basin. Tellurian planned to make a FID on Driftwood this year after beginning the plant's regulatory approval process in 2016. But the terminal does not yet have any publicly announced term customers. Contracts worth 9mn t/yr to supply Shell and trading firms Gunvor and Vitol were cancelled last year, as Tellurian did not reach a FID by the deadlines set out in the supply contracts. Woodside expects development costs of around $900-960/t for phase 1 and 2, which total 16.5mn t/yr capacity, implying a project worth about $10.6bn excluding pipelines. Phase 1 construction is under way with pilings for trains 1 and 2 complete, foundation work in progress and pilings under way for its LNG tanks, the firm said. Woodside earlier this year called off a proposed $53bn merger with fellow Australian independent Santos, with it focusing on completing its $12bn Scarborough project offshore Western Australia by 2026. By Tom Major Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

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Williams to resume Louisiana gas line construction


19/07/24
News
19/07/24

Williams to resume Louisiana gas line construction

New York, 19 July (Argus) — US natural gas pipeline company Williams on Friday told federal energy regulators it will proceed with construction of its delayed 1.8 Bcf/d (51mn m³/d) Louisiana Energy Gateway (LEG) gas gathering line in Louisiana. Williams' letter of intent to the US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) is the culmination of a series of lawsuits across multiple Louisiana parishes brought by US midstream rival Energy Transfer, which seeks to stop Williams and two other pipeline companies from crossing its own gas line in the Haynesville shale. While Williams is still waiting on a final ruling over two crossings in Vernon Parish, its recent legal victories over Energy Transfer and acquisition of necessary federal permits and easements from landowners have made it possible to commence construction of LEG, Williams said. The final ruling out of Vernon Parish will be decided "soon," Williams said. Williams said it intends to release its contractor to resume pre-construction activities along its right-of-way as early as 25 July, then proceed with construction. "But for the crossing litigation with Energy Transfer, construction of [LEG] would be well underway," Williams said. The litigation has pushed Williams' expected in-service date for LEG from late 2024 to the second half of 2025. Williams prevailed over Energy Transfer earlier this month in DeSoto Parish and in early June in Beauregard Parish . By Julian Hast Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

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