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Cold, Hungry and in the Dark: Exploding the Natural Gas Supply Myth (Anglais) Broché – 30 mai 2013

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Book by Powers Bill

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Amazon.com: HASH(0x9fa995b8) étoiles sur 5 28 commentaires
16 internautes sur 16 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x9fae9e4c) étoiles sur 5 Solid Critique of "100-Year Supply"; Weak Case for Shortage 17 septembre 2013
Par Jamie M. Schmidt - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
Mr. Powers, as has been noted by other viewers, does an excellent job providing data and sources attacking the "100-year supply" myth. Throughout the book, Mr. Powers presented compelling evidence that the natural gas supply has been materially overstated by industry and other vested interests. The highlight of the book are the two sections in which Mr. Powers reviews US production data shale play by shale play - an analysis I have been unable to find anywhere else - and another section in which Mr. Powers shines a light on the holes in the Energy Information Agency's natural gas reserves data. These are among the strongest elements of the book, and I believe the pieces most appreciated by other readers.

That said, the other half of the book is spent on making the case that the U.S. will face a natural gas shortage. The case in this half of the book is weak and not as well supported as the other. After reading this portion of the book, I wasn't necessarily opposed to the idea that the US could face a shortage of natural gas, but I was far from convinced. Some of Mr. Powers arguments in this portion are lacking. For instance, Mr. Powers cites the decline in production in the majority of shale plays from 2010-to-date as evidence that the plays have already "peaked". While I don't necessarily disagree with his conclusion, the argument itself is wanting. My immediate reaction was to question if the producers that weren't forced to drill due to lease holdings and/or interest payments were shutting in wells and refraining from drilling in an attempt to hold out for higher natural gas prices. Mr. Powers never addresses this obvious question. A similar case arises when Mr. Powers conclusively indicates that U.S. demand for natural gas will increase because manufacturing is coming back to the U.S. Again, while I do not necessarily disagree with the assumption, there is never an incredibly strong and conclusive case. Several such quick assumptions are made to support the conclusion that the U.S. faces a gas shortage. While I'm not in disagreement with Mr. Powers, I'm far from convinced of his case.

I award the book four stars. The case against the EIA and the depth of the play-by-play production data are truly class-act and compelling. I knock a star off for the weak and sometimes wanting case for an imminent U.S. gas shortage.
16 internautes sur 18 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x9fc866e4) étoiles sur 5 The Reality of Shale Gas 3 juillet 2013
Par G. Denny Wright - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
Bill Powers offers a factual antidote to the incessant media message of US energy independence. His careful, three year, analysis of shale gas production (supported by over 600 footnotes and many charts and tables) brings to mind the detailed research of Michael Burry. Instead of poring over 100 page bond prospectuses, Power aims his magnifying glass on natural gas. In 2005 it was assumed that housing prices could never go down. Today, the same certainty is given to the continuation of low natural gas prices which will fuel a US manufacturing renaissance, power vehicles (Pickens Plan), provide electricity, and still have enough left over to export. Powers proves that these beliefs are myths, not facts. He starts by providing a history of the natural gas crisis in the 1970s and explains how coal and nuclear came to the rescue to finally reduce prices. He then explains why neither of those energy sources will help mitigate the price rise that he foresees. How can he be so sure that prices will rise? His detailed analysis reveals the terrible financing models of natural gas companies such as Chesapeake whose profits came more from land sales than production. In regard to the production increases from shale, Powers proves that drilling of a relatively small number of bountiful key "sweet spots" led to a rapid production increase followed by equally fast decreases. Against the backdrop of depleting and aging resources in the Gulf of Mexico, Texas, and other areas, Powers proves that shale gas is less of a miracle and more of another destructive bubble in the making. The strength of the book is the data which Powers provides to support his thesis. Where so many others offer their opinions regarding the current and future state of energy in America, Powers is a refreshing and factual voice. We would be smart to listen and follow his ideas for improving the efficiency of the energy grid, utilizing solar, wind, and other alternative energy resources. Michael Burry saw the future of housing many years before the collapse. Bill Powers sees a cold, hungry, and dark future unless we can tune out the siren song of energy independence and focus on the reality of natural gas production and prices in America. With massive debt and endless quantitative easing, we can't afford to ignore Powers' clear, factual, and vitally important message.
15 internautes sur 17 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x9fb1aa98) étoiles sur 5 Lots of details on natural gas resources 24 juin 2013
Par Andrew - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
I was looking forward to reading this book as I was looking for a clear rebuttal to claims of "100-year" supplies of natural gas in the US. Powers is clearly knowledgeable and the book contains many details concerning US shale gas plays including expected production rates. I was a bit disappointed with the writing style as the book takes the reader laboriously through each US state's production but doesn't seem to sum up results to support the conclusion. I felt like I was given a handful of bullets but no gun.
8 internautes sur 9 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x9fb549cc) étoiles sur 5 Quite a dark but neutral book on shale gas 10 juillet 2013
Par Rauli - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Format Kindle Achat vérifié
I read this after reading "Shale Gas: the promise and the peril". Both books were well written and researched, but ended up giving a quite different perspective on the situation of shale gas (even though, in the end, they are perhaps not so different in absolute terms, as both books predict some shale production in the future, but this book brings out the wide margin between its authors' (and his sources') estimates on reservers and the industry claims on resources (which they seem to try to sell as reserves whenever possible but which are totally different things). The other book concentrated a bit more on the other side: the envisronmentalists claims on this and that environmental damage, their (usual) scaremaongering that is not based on science and the supposed fact that shale production can be quite less harmful if best practices are used (the story of any modern capitalistic industry that is forced to cut costs because everybody is doing it).

For those more interested on reserves and the development of production, I recommend Cold, Hungry and in the Dark. Of the two books, it was slightly better both on content and readability, and if you are still hungry for more shale or maybe a bit more interested on a neutral view on its environmental effects and problems, I recommend Shale Gas - the Promise and the Peril.
10 internautes sur 12 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x9fd70618) étoiles sur 5 In-Depth Refutation of the Natural Gas Superabundance Myth 15 juillet 2013
Par Patrik Korda - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
This book can be quite deceiving considering the cover and the title reek of doom and gloom, the likes of which can be found on zerohedge. In fact, those who gave this book a bad rating but subscribe to the idea that natural gas reserves may be grossly inflated seemed to have expected what the cover suggests: a few simple talking points and a ton of ideology. However, this book is no such thing.

The book is jam-packed with data and takes several reads just to begin grasping the broad picture, especially for someone who is not a professional in the oil and gas industry. Consider that the notes full of sources (the stuff at the end of the book) span 44 pages. This is excluding the list of figures, tables, bibliography, and the index. Bill Powers provides several trillion cubic feet (no pun intended) worth of reports, charts, etc., to the point where the reader cannot help but appreciate the vast amount of knowledge that Powers has accumulated leading up to writing this book.

Bill Powers takes no prisoners. He not only takes on the natural gas superabundance myth from a fundamental supply & demand perspective, but also points out the conflicts of interests of the various companies, consulting firms, and individuals who are propagating the myth. Just one curious example is that of T. Boone Pickens, who has been a major proponent of H.R. 1835 and S. 1408, known commonly as the Nat Gas Act. It just so happens that as of December 31, 2011, Pickens owned 16.5 million shares of Clean Energy Fuels Corp. (NASDAQ: CLNE), one of the largest providers of natural gas refueling stations in the US, which would greatly benefit from the passage of the act.

The book starts off by taking the reader back in time in order to explain how the natural gas market in the US developed into what it is today. During and after WWII running up to the 1970's, the natural gas market was subject to price-controls using the byzantine system. The result of several decades' worth of artificially low prices was overconsumption and a natural gas crisis that materialized in the 1970's.

Bill Powers goes into detail when it comes to the 1970's gas crisis, and points out a curious development of rising prices yet falling production. Since natural gas is a finite non-renewable resource like oil, rising prices themselves could not offset the material reality that the easily accessible supplies had already been consumed. So what was the inevitable result? Demand destruction. Yet, unlike today, the US economy was nowhere near as reliant on natural gas, thus the pain is bound to be harsher this time around. The situation was so bad at one point that President Jimmy Carter attributed the shortage of natural gas to the loss of 500,000 jobs and to the closure of thousands of factories.

Bill Powers proceeds to describe the 1984 - 2000 period as the era of price stability and deregulation. Yet, a large part of this period of seeming tranquility was due to a massive increase in natural gas imports from Canada, which concealed the maturity and terminal decline of America's natural gas supplies. This is one thing that most people fail to appreciate: that the US is and has been a net importer of natural gas for decades. It is hard to imagine a country that has a superabundance of natural gas as a net importer. We do not see Qatar importing natural gas or Saudi Arabia importing oil on a net basis.

In terms of economic supply, the vast amount of data that Bill Powers presents is clear on the matter: US natural gas production peaked in 1973 at 56.53 billion cubic feet per day, which was 4 decades ago! Since then, the number of rigs and wells has increased exponentially, but still no new peak in natural gas production. So why on earth do people believe we are the next Saudi Arabia? The hope is that shale gas with the combination of fracking will save the day. However, shale gas production goes back to 1821 in the United States. Moreover, fracking began as early as the 1940's.

While the likes of Aubrey McClendon, CEO of Chesapeake, believe we have over 3 thousand tcf of natural gas, or approximately 125 years of the stuff at present rates of consumption; Bill Powers comes to a more sober estimate of 132 tcf, or only 6 years of the stuff at present rates of consumption. Powers arrives at this estimate by carefully analyzing past production and reserves state by state, and play by play in painstaking detail. McClendon, on the other hand, seems to pull his figure out of thin air. The most bullish estimate out there excluding that of McClendon seems to be by the consulting firm INTEK Inc., which compiles its information from the investor presentations of the various natural gas companies out there, including Chesapeake. INTEK Inc., estimates come out to a total of 750 tcf, which is certainly closer to the estimate of Bill Powers than Aubrey McClendon, and this is from the most bullish consulting firm out there.

Bill Powers goes on to provide lots of other information, including how the macro-economy will likely shift and several investment ideas. Overall, I think the man is rather objective, sober, and in some ways actually downplays the severity of the supply crunch that is looming ahead. One thing is certain: Be prepared for higher electricity bills!
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