Columnists are speculating we are now witnessing the Last Oil and Gas Rally (think of the movie, The Last Picture Show). To that I would say, not so fast.
The big event of this past week in the Permian Basin was the sale by Shell to Conoco. Conoco COP bought Shell’s mineral property for a tidy $9.5 billion. That would be some 225,000 acres producing 200,000 bpd. Check the COP website for a Mission Statement we can actually understand, succinct and to the point.
We are challenged with an important job to safely find and deliver energy to the world.
And I would remind that COP is the merger of Texas based Conoco and Oklahoma based Phillips 66, gee oil companies located in oil country. Shell plans to have a shareholder distribution and I gather COP plans to produce energy, see above. Wall Street seems to like the idea as COP rose from $56 to $63.81. The point here is that Houston-based COP sees a continued future for fossil fuels.
Electric cars compromise less than 3% of all U.S. vehicle sales. And walk through any parking lot and you see hulking 2.5 ton pickups, yes I know Ford already has an electric F 150 prototype.
But here are my concerns.
1. Toyota told the Japanese government their electric grid will not sustain all electric cars by 2030. The government ignored the advice. Here in Texas a mere four inches of snow shut down our power grid. I doubt we will be up and running grid-wise for all electric cars by 2030, unless you can do without home air conditioning.
2. Hurricane Ida made it clear that driving an electric vehicle in a storm-ravaged state would be near impossible. Electrics would be pressed to ford deep water. And with the power grid still down, there is no way to re-charge the vehicle.
3. And electric vehicles are expensive to purchase. Great to talk about them but another thing to find your next vehicle will cost $50,000.
4. And there was another big energy saver this past 1.5 years that had nothing to do with electric cars — what was it? And it is still working to reduce the carbon footprint judging by the vehicle traffic. And that would be online meetings, no gasoline required. COVID finally made online visits a reality. Most small meetings now take place online. This saves travel time and gasoline. Yet I have yet to hear Team Biden acknowledge this simple fact of life.
5. The Dutch shut down their only natural gas field and are now importing from Texas and their good buddies in Russia. Ditto for Asia. Natural gas is still a very clean and plentiful fuel which works when the sun does not shine.
Stocks have staged a strong rally back, but the tops of the last few months remain in place. Caution is advised as Xi and the Democrats attempt to turn back to massive central control.