Donlin Gold mine to put down $322 million ahead of time; Oil is here to stay

State of Alaska issues two key permits for Donlin mine
Ravenna Koenig, Alaska’s Energy Desk, January 21, 2019

On Friday the state of Alaska issued two key permits for the proposed Donlin Gold mine in the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta. One is the reclamation plan approval, which outlines how Donlin Gold would clean up the mine site after the project is over. The other is a waste management permit, detailing how the company plans to deal with tailings, waste rock and wastewater related to the mine. Along with the reclamation plan, the state also increased the amount of money Donlin Gold will be required to put down ahead of time for the mine’s cleanup. That figure — which appeared in an earlier draft as $317 million — has been bumped up to $322 million. The state says the revision was made to cover the cost of maintenance for a permanent road that would be built to access to the mine.

Our Take: Great news for Donlin!   This is just one example of the level of commitment this company has to responsibly develop Alaska’s resources for the benefit of all Alaskans – more than 20 years and hundreds of millions of dollars spent just to get to a final investment decision.

BP CEO Bob Dudley sees solid oil demand growth despite fears over global economy
Tom DiChristopher, CNBC, January 22, 2019

BP is expecting solid growth in oil demand this year despite growing concerns about a global economic slowdown, CEO Bob Dudley said Tuesday. The British energy giant forecasts the world’s appetite for oil will grow by another 1.4 million barrels per day in 2019. That compares with demand growth of 1.3 million bpd last year, according to the International Energy Agency, a policy advisor to developed nations. The 2019 projection puts BP’s view in line with the latest forecast from the Paris-based IEA, but ahead of OPEC, which sees demand growing at a more tepid 1.29 million bpd. “We’re not actually seeing this worrying thought that it’s all going to start falling,” Dudley told CNBC in an interview at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

Our Take:   The world needs, and wants, more oil. #deathoffossilfuelsisgreatlyexaggerated

Billionaire investor David Rubenstein says US-China trade talks are likely to end in months and the government should reopen in days
Brian Schwartz, CNBC, January 22, 2019

Carlyle Group founder David Rubenstein said Tuesday that U.S.-China trade negotiations are likely to end in months and the U.S. government shutdown will probably conclude in the next few days. “My view on the China negotiations is that it is likely something will come to pass in the next few months. I think both sides recognize that’s it’s not in either sides interest to have this go on,” Rubenstein said in an exclusive interview with CNBC on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

Our Take:   Rubenstein is the former husband of former ADN owner Alice Rogoff – you know – the one who came to town to interfere in Alaska elections and failed to pay her debts to Alaska businesses?    

Enviros granted legal status to fight proposed LNG project at Port of Brownsville
Sergio Chap, The Houston Chronicle, January 21, 2019

Federal regulators have granted environmental activists’ legal status to challenge Texas LNG, one of three liquefied natural gas projects proposed at the Port of Brownsville. In a Friday notice, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Deputy Secretary Nathaniel Davis granted Save RGV From LNG a motion to intervene in a permit application filed by Houston liquefied natural company Texas LNG. “SaveRGV states that it has an interest in the proceeding because SaveRGV and its members have environmental, aesthetic, and economic interests that are directly affected by the project,” Davis wrote in the notice. “SaveRGV’s motion is unopposed.”

Our Take: This is a disturbing decision. At a time when there is record private investment in resource development allowing ENGO’s to intervene in projects adds an element of instability that is the enemy of investment.