Midstream Monitor

Are you smack dab in the middle of the intersection between energy and politics, not sure which direction either is going, or supposed to go? We hear you. Now hear this: a new podcast, Political Sidetrack, that will provide insight on where the industry stands in the corridors of power and what to expect. Also, Tillerson's hearing; "Pipeline Purgatory"; and can President Trump make NGL prices great again? 
Natural gas prices are primed for recovery, thanks to LNG plants coming online and the prospects for piping gas into Mexico, partners at Sidley Austin LLP said. Also, Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick said he was happy that the state would no longer have "an enemy in the White House;" a study contends that renewables are adding to the value of gas storage; and the industry can expect a 32% hike in NGL prices this year.
There were struggles and disappointments, but from a stock price point of view, midstream companies rebounded nicely in 2016. Also, there could be complications if the next president ends up supporting a border-adjustment tax; an activist investor is encouraging a merger of EQT and Range Resources or Antero Resources; and NGL prices ended the year on a 25-month high.
This issue oversees the destination of much of the U.S. energy output, that is, overseas. Our cover piece explores opportunities opened up by expanded lanes in the Panama Canal, while an inside story examines the burgeoning business of building pipelines to move U.S. natural gas to Mexico. In an accompanying Midstream Audio report, two attorneys discuss how to navigate the complex legal terrain of Mexico's energy reform. Also, NGL may have started the year off slowly, but they sprinted to the finish in 2016.
The list of nominees to key positions in the Trump administration cabinet points to a growing hydrocarbon influence. ExxonMobil's Rex Tillerson (State) is joined by former Texas Gov. Rick Perry (Energy) and Oklahoma Atty. Gen. E. Scott Pruitt (EPA). Also, the trend to repurpose assets gains traction; Raven's new refinery has exports to Mexico in mind; and ethane prices hit a 29-month high. 
Environmentalists declared victory when the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers denied a key construction permit for the Dakota Access Pipeline. As far as the energy industry is concerned, however, it's just a temporary setback that will be remedied on Jan. 20, 2017. Also, barring a trade war, the oil and gas sector is primed to succeed during the years of the Trump administration; new projects are adding natural gas capacity in New England; and NGL prices are at a two-year high.
The stunning announcement that OPEC would cut production by 1.2 million barrels spurred increases in the price of crude and plenty of questions. Jeff Quigley of Stratas Advisors provides some answers. Also, CB&I was awarded a $200 million contract to build an LNG facility in Tacoma, Wash., and rising natural gas prices squeezed profit margins for NGL.
The Trump administration can be expected to move quickly to clear the way on energy infrastructure projects like pipelines, Washington insider Joe McMonigle said. Whether Harold Hamm will lead the Department of Energy in the incoming administration may depend on whether the president-elect can convince the Continental Resources CEO to leave the company he founded. Also, Houston-based Tudor, Pickering, Holt & Co. announced its merger with Perella Weinberg Partners; and Gregory Meece of Thompson & Knight discusses energy litigation in a downcycle in the new Midstream Connect video.
The U.S. presidential election may be over, but what will a Trump administration mean to the energy industry? Hart Energy gathered insights from industry pros to illustrate what to expect on a broad range of issues, from the Dakota Access Pipeline to the regulatory environment. Also, how the industry's good ol' boys network could hinder another kind of network—technology; and Karen Harbert warns energy execs that they must get their message across to the public.
The DAPL issue is about much more than a Native American tribe's land and water rights. Aspects of this conflict and the way they have played out will continue to pose significant challenges for the oil and gas industry. Also, we talk to Andrejka Bernatova of PennTex Midstream, a Thirty Under 40 honoree; Stratas Advisors provides insights on LPG exports; and Dominion makes a $1.73 billion dropdown.