May's top stories: Gazprom signs China gas supply contract

Gazprom has signed a $400bn contract with China National Petroleum (CNPC) to supply 38 billion cubic metres of gas annually for the next 30 years. Hydrocarbons Technology wraps up the key headlines from May.


Gazprom signs natural gas supply contract with CNPC


Gazprom has signed a $400bn contract with China National Petroleum (CNPC) to supply 38 billion cubic metres of gas annually for the next 30 years.

Gas will be delivered through the Power of Siberia trunk line featuring the Yakutia and Irkutsk production centres, which were constructed to supply gas to Russia's Far East and China. Gazprom said $55bn will be invested in the construction of new production and transmission facilities.

ExxonMobil starts production at Papua New Guinea LNG project


ExxonMobil has started producing liquefied natural gas (LNG) from its $19bn plant in Papua New Guinea.

The first cargo from the project, which will also produce piped natural gas (PNG), is anticipated to be shipped to Asian markets soon.

The company said that production from the first LNG train will increase over the coming weeks, and work on the second train is progressing.

ExxonMobil affiliate ExxonMobil PNG will operate the project, which is anticipated to produce more than 9 trillion cubic feet of gas over 30 years of operations.

Texas oilfield explosion kills two and injures nine


Two men were killed and nine others injured following an explosion at an oil drilling site in Loving County, Texas, US.

The incident occurred when workers were using heavy machinery to replace a wellhead at the production facility.

The site is owned by RKI Exploration & Production, although reports suggest that none of the company's employees were at the site of the explosion.

Loving County sheriff Billy Hopper said that authorities received an emergency call on 30 April 2014 about the explosion near Orla, Texas.

Hess to sell retail business to Marathon Petroleum

US-based integrated oil company Hess has signed a $2.6bn agreement to sell its retail business to Marathon Petroleum subsidiary Speedway.

The deal includes all of Hess' retail locations, transport operations and shipper history on various pipelines, including around 40,000 barrels a day on the Colonial Pipeline.

Hess CEO John B Hess said that sale of the company's retail business marks the culmination of strategic transformation into a pure-play exploration and production company.

Sanchez Energy to acquire Shell's Eagle Ford assets in Texas


Sanchez Energy will acquire Shell's 100% working interest in Eagle Ford assets in south Texas for approximately $639m.

The company will acquire Shell's working interest in around 106,000 net acres in Dimmit, LaSalle, and Webb counties in south Texas, which includes around 176 operated producing wells and associated field facilities and infrastructure.

The assets include 60 million barrels of oil equivalent of proved reserves. Net production from the acreage in the first quarter of 2014 was around 24,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boepd), of which around 60% was crude and natural gas liquids.

UK looks to simplify shale gas procedures


The UK Government has launched a consultation into land access issues for the onshore oil and gas and geothermal industries.

The new proposals would simplify procedures which the government says are costly, time-consuming and disproportionate for the newer methods of underground drilling.

Shale oil and gas firms would be granted access to land below 300m from the surface, and the government also suggests that companies pay £20,000 per well to those living above the land and provide a clear notification system to alert local people.

WorleyParsons wins Trans Anatolian natural gas pipeline contract


Australia-based oil, gas and resource services company WorleyParsons has secured a new engineering, procurement and construction management (EPCM) contract for the $11.7bn Trans Anatolian natural gas pipeline project (TANAP) linking Turkey and Greece.

The 1,800km pipeline will transport Caspian natural gas from the Georgian-Turkish border to Turkey's western border with Greece. The planned capacity of the pipeline is 16 billion cubic metres of natural gas a year in 2020 to be increased to 23 billion cubic metres in 2023 and 31 billion cubic metres in 2026.

The governments of Turkey and Azerbaijan signed a memorandum of understanding in 2011 to develop the project, which will initially take production from the BP Shah Deniz stage two project in Azerbaijan.

IGas to acquire Dart Energy

UK shale gas firm IGas Energy has agreed to acquire Australia-based Dart Energy in a share-based deal worth approximately £117.1m.

Dart Energy holds 24 prospective shale gas licences in the UK. The company has farm-out agreements with GDF SUEZ and Total E&P UK for the funding and execution of shale gas and CBM exploration work programmes on some of the licences in the next three years.

IGas said that the deal would create an onshore oil and gas company with the largest area in the UK under licence of more than 1 million net acres, including the country's major shale basins.