QS Energy, Inc.

STWA Market Watch: U.S. Energy Boom Spurring Ambitious Expansion of Nation’s Crude Pipeline System

September 4, 2014

A recent article in the Oil & Gas Journal finds that the continued surge in upstream production is driving a strong increase in newly constructed and proposed crude pipeline projects, resulting in close to 6,000,000 barrels of new capacity. Data from the Association of Oil Pipe Lines (AOPL) estimates approximately 10,000 miles have been added to the U.S. petroleum liquids pipeline network during the past 4 years, a system comprised of some 57,051 miles of crude oil lines, 64,024 miles of product lines, and 59,853 miles of natural gas liquid lines.

Nick Snow, Oil & Gas Journal Washington editor, reports that producers, industry trade organizations and government regulators are increasingly focused on ensuring existing infrastructure is optimally maintained and new lines are designed, constructed and operated with higher safety standards and a best practices approach to construction management.

"We have more domestic production than ever. We need to find ways to move it," commented Peter T. Lidiak, American Petroleum Institute pipeline director. "The pipelines haven't been there, so railroads, barges, and even some trucking has picked up some of the capacity. We need to get the crude to where it has to go in the safest way possible.”

According to statistics compiled by the American Petroleum Institute and AOPL, in 2012 U.S. operators delivered 14.1 billion barrel crude and products over 185,599 miles of interstate pipeline. AOPL president Andrew J. Black says that while newly constructed pipeline projects have been “significant”, further takeaway capacity is essential to keep up with domestic production, especially in shale hotspots such as Bakken, Eagle Ford, Permian Basin, etc.

"…we're still increasing crude supplies in regions that don't have pipeline capacity to take it away. There's good potential to match often lower-priced domestic crude supplies with refineries that need them. But that potential has yet to be realized," he stated.

Read the full article on the Oil & Gas Journal website.

Energy Industry’s Investment in Technologies to Mitigate Greenhouse Gas Emissions Delivering Results

According to industry data gathered by the Department of Energy and the Energy Information Administration, the U.S. oil and natural gas industry has invested an estimated $58 billion since 2000 to mitigate its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. This commitment to more energy-efficient and environmentally-sound technologies is apparently paying off. Analysis of CO2 emitted by the oil and gas industry collected under the EPA’s Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program shows a drop of 22 percent based on data from 1990 to the present day.

Reports published by the American Petroleum Institute say a large portion of the reductions can be attributed to leaner, more efficiently run refineries. Among the clean tech innovations increasingly in use is cogeneration, a process that produces electricity to operate the refinery while capturing the resultant waste heat for use in refining the oil or gas. Also contributing to a drop in the industry’s carbon footprint is the adoption of lower carbon fuels (natural gas primarily) and renewable sources of energy such as solar and wind to help power pipeline pumping stations, storage facilities and refineries. The EAP says that these and other steps have cut CO2 emissions at oil refineries by 36 percent from 1996 to 2008.

The API further points out that the industry is gradually moving away from the widespread practice of “flaring” in the field and at refineries, a method of burning off methane and other gases produced during drilling and at storage and refining facilities. Equipment to capture these by-products and put them to use is credited with improving air quality in the immediate area surrounding these activities.

Additional information is available in ‘Environmental Expenditures by the U.S. Oil and Natural Gas Industry 1990 - -2012’, an API report here (.PDF document).

AOT Clean Tech Flow Assurance

As a trusted supplier of clean tech technologies to the energy sector STWA is ideally positioned to help our customers improve the efficiencies of their crude extraction and transportation operations while supporting their mission to become more sustainable.

While the primary motivations for deploying AOT are principally viscosity reduction and resultant flow improvement, we continue to see an evolving appreciation of the benefits AOT can deliver beyond overall pipeline performance gains. For example, even though our technical presentations at industry conferences typically focus on the use of dielectrophoresis (the application of non-uniform electrical field to change the mechanical properties of fluids) for improved flow assurance, many of our conversations with executives and engineers here in North America and in Europe point to the value of our technology as a contributor to corporate environmental stewardship.

To this end, through experience gained from customer engagements and our research partners at Temple University we continue to optimize the performance capabilities of the first two AOT Midstream production units. In doing so we have had the opportunity to capture and quantify the operational efficiencies that hold the greatest potential to impact our customers’ commitment to sustainability.

AOT: Energy Efficiency Characteristics and Infrastructure Performance Benefits

Pipeline System

Minimized Viscosity: Non-uniform electrical charge aggregates impurities in crude, reducing drag and particulate-caused resistance within pipeline  

Continuous Reliable Flow Assurance: By being calibrated specifically to grade of crude being transported and the characteristics of the pipeline, flow is improved and turbulence is reduced

Reduced Pressurization: Viscosity reduction and better flow enable pipeline to be operated with less pressure, mitigating maintenance and elevating safety

Equipment Lifecycle: Better flow reduces bottlenecks, enables system to operate at lower pressure with less friction, minimizing wear and tear of mechanical equipment

Pumping Station

Less Energy Consumption: Lower viscosity and better flow result in less energy used per barrel pumped

Equipment Maintenance Savings: Operating with less resistance and lower pressure can extend life of pump station equipment and increase time between repairs

Environmental Impact

Lower CO2 Emissions: Less energy consumption throughout the pipeline infrastructure reduces greenhouse gas (GHG) released at pumping stations during transport

Minimized Use of Chemicals: Lower reliance on flow assurance additives results in increased volume capacity and mitigates removal and disposal of by-products during processing at the refinery

Revenue/Overhead Considerations

Protects Company Assets: Optimizing performance of pipeline infrastructure maximizes useful life of hard assets such as pipeline and equipment and lowers the potential for fatigue and failure

Increased Toll Rates: Higher volume of crude transported results in greater revenues due to more barrels moved daily

Improved Energy Efficiency: Less energy consumed at pumping station(s) contributes to better overall pipeline system performance

Leverages Carbon Neutral Programs: Documented mitigation of GHG emissions enables operators to qualify for carbon credit or other CO2 emission reduction opportunities

As always, we thank you for your support and look forward to your continued comments.

Best regards,

Greggory Bigger
Chief Executive Officer, Chairman of the Board
STWA, Inc.

Investor Relations & Media Contact:

STWA, Inc.
Tel: (805) 845-3581
E-mail: investor@stwa.com

Source: Save The World Air, Inc.