(Jim White III)
Dawn in the Big Bend of Texas; it shares some tectonic and geographic characteristics with the Permian Basin, home of the country's highest-producing oil field.
The Big Bend of Texas, so named for the way the region hugs a massive bend in the Rio Grande, is renown for its desert landscapes, open spaces and tranquility.
But parts of it lie within the oil-rich Permian Basin, the nation’s highest producing oil field thanks in large measure to fracking technology.
And now, Mexico is drilling at least 29 exploratory wells across the border from the Big Bend, a saying it wants to jumpstart fracking operations there.
Of course, fracking requires water. And in the Big Bend, some landowners are selling water for fracking, pitting some conservationists against private property holders, who also consider themselves to be good stewards of the land.
This week we have examined the opportunity and challenge for solar power in Texas. There are no state mandates or incentives for solar.
And the head of the Public Utilities Commission says Congress should end solar’s 30 per cent federal tax credit.
Despite that landscape solar is breaking through in parts of Texas, providing models that renewable energy advocates hope will resonate in the rest of the state, starting with the price of solar power. Continue Reading
Courtesy of KXWT
An oil rig south of Pyote, Texas, December 11, 2013.
This story was produced by member station KXWT.
The energy boom in the Permian Basin of Texas and New Mexico is driving one of the nation’s fastest growing regional economies.
But growth is tied to the price of oil and some prominent energy analysts suggest the price of crude will fall in 2014.
Oil wells operating round the clock represent the sound of a region transformed.
Modern technologies like fracking and horizontal drilling are cutting the cost of extracting oil and gas from what was once the floor of an ancient sea laced with hydrocarbons.Bob Randolph is an oil field supervisor working as a consultant with Arabella Petroleum. He runs crews drilling through the Permian’s porous shale. 140-foot tall rigs back up against each other on to the dusty horizon.
“Things are real good,” he said while scurrying around the base of one of the rigs.
“The drilling industry is doin’ good. Price of oil’s hanging in. Need the price of natural gas to come up a little bit but the oil field’s doin’ real good right now.”In Texas they say everything’s bigger. Never more true than in the Permian Basin today. Private jets compete for parking space. Rents are on a par with San Francisco. Streets are full of luxury cars, all symbols of wealth all pegged to oil and gas prices.