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Renewables beat oil, gas stocks; oil majors risking profitability


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Renewables beat oil, gas stocks; oil majors risking profitability

Top News

Renewables handily beat oil and gas stocks in 2019

A basket of major renewable energy providers outperformed the S&P 500, gaining 49% compared to the S&P 500's 29% rise over 2019. Oil and gas exploration and production companies, however, lost nearly 11%.

Slower shale growth may reignite investor enthusiasm for midstream, analysts say

Slowing U.S. oil and gas production provides a favorable opportunity for pipeline companies to regain their stride in the stock market and with reluctant investors, analysts at investment banking firm Mizuho said.

IEA warns oil majors risk profitability with slow response to climate change

Oil and gas companies are risking their long-term profitability by failing to act on climate change, which is already fueling a growing backlash against the industry, the International Energy Agency has warned.

American Resources agrees to sell Blackhawk affiliate Perry County coal assets

An affiliate of Blackhawk Mining LLC agreed to purchase at least one Perry County Coal mine and other assets from American Resources Corp. in a deal worth roughly $1 million.


"The plaintiffs have made a compelling case that action is needed; it will be increasingly difficult in light of that record for the political branches to deny that climate change is occurring, that the government has had a role in causing it, and that our elected officials have a moral responsibility to seek solutions. … We reluctantly conclude, however, that the plaintiffs' case must be made to the political branches or to the electorate at large, the latter of which can change the composition of the political branches through the ballot box," according to the majority opinion issued by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit, ordering a lower court to dismiss a case in which a group of young Americans sought to make federal agencies address and limit the impacts of climate change.


* In the wake of catastrophic wildfires that forced California's largest utility, Pacific Gas and Electric Co., into bankruptcy protection and related precautionary power outages that put millions of its customers in the dark, the state will redirect roughly $1.2 billion in battery and renewable energy incentives toward its most impacted communities.

* Democratic U.S. presidential hopeful Michael Bloomberg has pledged to help reduce the size and impact of major wildfires, including through the use of microgrids, and leverage federal data and funds to help cities, states and the private sector adapt to the impacts of climate change.

* Hydroelectricity may see more interest from utilities, governments and investors as the energy sector seeks out more noncarbon-emitting resources to meet various greenhouse gas reduction goals, according to Moody's.

* Solar developers in the U.K. are assembling pipelines of unsubsidized projects after the country's government phased out its supportive subsidy schemes. But the business case for the next wave of plants will include some caveats.

* Investments in the renewable energy sector and rising carbon emission costs could see Germany phase out lignite coal power generation before the 2038 deadline, Bloomberg News reported.

* Dominion Energy Inc.'s ability to receive regulated cost recovery for its planned 2,640-MW offshore wind project would be cemented by a pair of bills introduced in the Virginia General Assembly.

Natural gas

* An administrative law judge raised to $110 million a settlement that PG&E Corp. needs to pay for falsifying records and failing to execute properly a safety program for its underground gas and electric facilities.

* Enterprise Products Partners LP achieved operations at its Mentone cryogenic natural gas processing plant in Loving County, Texas. The facility has the capacity to process 300 MMcf/d of natural gas and extract more than 40,000 barrels per day of natural gas liquids.

* Natural gas pipeline capacity approved by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission almost doubled in 2019 from 2018 but was still dwarfed by the 30.6 Bcf/d certificated in 2017 at the peak of a Northeast buildout of pipelines moving Appalachian gas to demand centers.

* Evolution Well Services LLC secured a two-year contract to provide electric hydraulic fracturing services for an unnamed onshore oil and gas producer, starting in the first quarter of 2020. The technology could save up to $1.5 million in costs per month.

* A recent ruling overturning a local prohibition on natural gas in fuel cells could be a preview into legal challenges against a wave of municipal building gas bans and electrification codes.

* DCP Midstream LP and Apergy Corp. agreed to jointly develop digital solutions that combines artificial intelligence and industry expertise to increase asset reliability, enhance safety and improve efficiency of oil and gas operations.

* Attorneys general from 15 states and Washington, D.C., pressed U.S. regulators to withdraw a proposal that would broadly allow transportation of LNG by rail, which some in the natural gas industry have said will lead to safer and less costly shipment of the fuel in states where pipeline shipments are restricted.


* Suncor Energy Inc., Chrysaor Holdings Ltd. and Equinor ASA are among the final bidders who are vying to acquire Blackstone Group Inc.-backed oil producer Siccar Point Energy Ltd., Bloomberg News reported, citing sources close to the matter.

* The U.S. oil and gas rig count rose by five to a net 840 on the week, rig data supplier Enverus said, with the Permian Basin recovering to pre-holiday activity in the new year.

* Chevron Corp. has been granted another three months of operations in Venezuela by the U.S. Treasury Department, bringing the oil major's operations to April 22, Reuters reported. Other companies that received the waiver to operate are Schlumberger Ltd., Halliburton Co., Baker Hughes Co. and Weatherford International PLC, the Houston Chronicle reported.

* BP PLC will exit Iraq's Kirkuk oilfield after the oil major failed to secure a new expansion contract, Reuters reported.

* Separately, BP CFO Brian Gilvary will retire from his position and step down from the oil and gas supermajor's board of directors June 30.

* U.S. Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto, D-Nev., introduced a bill to stop the Bureau of Land Management from leasing public lands for oil and gas drilling that have low or no potential for development.

* The shipping industry may need $1 trillion in new investment to comply with carbon emissions goals for 2050, Reuters reported.

* OPEC is likely to continue oil production cuts through 2020, a research director for Wood Mackenzie told CNBC.


* Hallador Energy Co. unit Sunrise Coal LLC temporarily idled production at its Carlisle coal mine in Sullivan County, Ind., citing weak market conditions that led to oversupply in the domestic market.

* Former Blackjewel LLC President and CEO Jeff Hoops will provide an in-depth response to the investigation into his financial transactions, which was requested by the company and a committee of its unsecured creditors, by Jan. 21, according to a new court filing.

* The U.S. Energy Information Administration estimates energy-related carbon emissions would decrease by 2% in 2020 and by 1.5% in 2021.

* U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson pledged to end the country's aid for coal mining and coal-fired power plants, The Telegraph reported.


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A number of independent oil and gas producers are in the midst of a multimonth share price recovery — but industry observers are unsure what is causing the change in sentiment among investors.

New from RRA

* Utilities outperformed the broad market measures this week. Through midday Friday, the Dow Jones Utility Average increased 3.4%, while the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite rose 1.7% and 2.0%, respectively. Utilities had previously lagged the broader market measures for three consecutive weeks.

The day ahead

* Early morning futures indicators pointed to a lower opening for the U.S. equity markets. To view more SNL equity market indexes, click here. To view more SNL Energy commodities prices, click here.

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Click here to read about today's financial markets, setting out the factors driving stocks, bonds and currencies around the world ahead of the New York open.

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