Tribpedia: Oil And Natural Gas

Tribpedia

For more than 100 years, Texas has been one of the nation’s key producers of oil and natural gas. After the discovery of the Spindletop oil field in 1901, oil production in the state increased at a rapid rate, reaching a peak in 1972. According to the Energy Information Administration, Texas was producing 3.4 million barrels a day ...

Read More...

Water Recycling Minimal but Growing on Texas Oilfields

Jonathan Jones, Field Supervisor for Water Rescue Services, holding partially cleaned fracking waste water.
Jonathan Jones, Field Supervisor for Water Rescue Services, holding partially cleaned fracking waste water.

As the drought continues to take its toll across the state, more oil and gas companies are considering the long-term benefits of water recycling, and state officials are trying to make that transition easier. Despite that momentum, recycling is far from a mainstream practice.

 

Jim Howell stands on the easement of the Exxon Mobile Pegasus pipeline which runs through his property in Gun Barrel City on Tuesday, Nov. 5, 2013.
Jim Howell stands on the easement of the Exxon Mobile Pegasus pipeline which runs through his property in Gun Barrel City on Tuesday, Nov. 5, 2013.

East Texans Seek Shutdown of Pegasus Pipeline

About eight months after a ruptured pipe spewed at least 210,000 gallons of tar sands oil in Arkansas, residents and some public officials in East Texas are calling on regulators to permanently shutter the Pegasus pipeline, which runs beneath local reservoirs and backyards. 

Attendees filled the Alexander Convention Center on Tuesday evening for a Texas Department of Transportation hearing in Cotulla, TX on their controversial plan to convert some paved roads to gravel to save money on maintenance.
Attendees filled the Alexander Convention Center on Tuesday evening for a Texas Department of Transportation hearing in Cotulla, TX on their controversial plan to convert some paved roads to gravel to save money on maintenance.

A New Boom for Oil, but a Bust for State's Rural Roads

As the Texas Department of Transportation blames a funding shortfall for its plans to convert some rural roads to gravel, South Texans argue they are being unfairly punished for the region’s drilling boom.

An oil & gas drilling rig is drilling a well for Pioneer Natural Resources in the Eagle Ford Shale formation near Yorktown.
An oil & gas drilling rig is drilling a well for Pioneer Natural Resources in the Eagle Ford Shale formation near Yorktown.

Eagle Ford Shale Region Sees Benefits, Concerns

Oil and gas representatives, along with academics, gathered in Laredo this week to discuss the economic benefits of the drilling boom in the Eagle Ford Shale. But concerns over the environmental impact of the boom persist.

Roughnecks repair a leaking oil well near downtown Kilgore.
Roughnecks repair a leaking oil well near downtown Kilgore.

Keeping Old Oil Wells from Leaking

  • 7Comments

When it comes to drilling deep into Texas to bring up oil and natural gas, things can go wrong. Sometimes wells, especially old ones, leak. 

Local pumper Bobby Thomason works on cleaning up an old well that was recently worked over to start producing again on a lease in Caldwell County near Luling, January 22, 2012.
Local pumper Bobby Thomason works on cleaning up an old well that was recently worked over to start producing again on a lease in Caldwell County near Luling, January 22, 2012.

New Technology Aids in Search for Untapped Oil Fields

  • 1Comment

In Texas, scientists have found that small amounts of oil and gas seepage lead to subtle changes in soil and rock formations — a discovery that could prove fruitful for oil and gas companies looking for undiscovered oil fields. 

Former gubernatorial candidate Debra Medina on Sept. 22, 2011, at a press conference on cronyism in Texas politics
Former gubernatorial candidate Debra Medina on Sept. 22, 2011, at a press conference on cronyism in Texas politics

Medina Leading Coalition Targeting Pipeline Expansion

Citing concerns about eminent domain abuse and the potential contamination of water resources, a coalition is asking state lawmakers to conduct interim studies and hold public meetings on the issue of oil pipeline expansion.

Chairman Barry Smitherman of the Railroad Commission of Texas in his office, May 31, 2013.
Chairman Barry Smitherman of the Railroad Commission of Texas in his office, May 31, 2013.

Texas Railroad Commission Chair Mulls Political Future

Barry Smitherman, the chairman of the Railroad Commission and former chairman of the Public Utility Commission, has earned praise as a smart and competent regulator. But he is also ambitious, and speculation is rife that he will make a bid for attorney general.

An oil & gas drilling rig is drilling a well for Pioneer Natural Resources in the Eagle Ford Shale formation near Yorktown.
An oil & gas drilling rig is drilling a well for Pioneer Natural Resources in the Eagle Ford Shale formation near Yorktown.

Railroad Commission Adopts Key Well Construction Rule

The Texas Railroad Commission passed a long-awaited rule on Friday to strengthen the construction of oil and gas wells. The commissioners hope to set an example for other drilling states.

A worker waits to load a piece of pipe, or casing, that will be lowered into the well at a Chesapeake Energy drill site in Dimmit County, Texas in the Eagle Ford Shale.
A worker waits to load a piece of pipe, or casing, that will be lowered into the well at a Chesapeake Energy drill site in Dimmit County, Texas in the Eagle Ford Shale.

Shale Boom Has Major Impact on Texas' Budget

Besides boosting the economies of remote towns, the shale boom has big implications for the Texas economy and budget. Already, taxes on oil and gas production have soared above the comptroller’s estimates. 

A recently installed, working pump jack sits near wind turbines in the Cline Shale region, near Maryneal south of Sweetwater.
A recently installed, working pump jack sits near wind turbines in the Cline Shale region, near Maryneal south of Sweetwater.

In Texas and Nationwide, Many Shales Left to Explore

Texas is already the top oil-producing state — and excitement about a new era is pervasive, thanks in part to improved technology. Exploration of new shales like the Cline in West Texas is underway, and some oilmen say it's like the old wildcatting days.

A road in the Eagle Ford Shale area in South Texas. The natural gas drilling boom is straining the region's rural roads. More than 1,000 loaded trucks are needed to bring a single well into production.
A road in the Eagle Ford Shale area in South Texas. The natural gas drilling boom is straining the region's rural roads. More than 1,000 loaded trucks are needed to bring a single well into production.

Cash for Road Repair in Shale Areas Proves Elusive

Efforts by state lawmakers to find money to repair South and West Texas roads torn up amid a drilling boom appear to be stalling, according to some officials working on the matter. Officials warn about the hazards of not maintaining these roads.