Are you feeling the market rebound? What I’ve heard from industry sources and the numerous reports I’ve read, the oil and gas market is recovering, although slowly. Last November OPEC agreed to remove 1.2 million barrels a day from their global oil production until July of this year. We’re hopeful that they will renew the agreement for another six months when they meet again in May. That’s one positive checkmark we’re heading in the right direction. The OPEC agreement pushed Brent oil above $50 a barrel from its terrible low of $26 in February 2016. That’s the second positive checkmark. The third checkmark is that shale is gaining momentum in several resource plays, especially the Permian Basin, and companies are cautiously hiring again in the three states OILMAN covers. Anadarko recently announced that it’s moving 200 employees to its Midland, Texas office. With all the positive news many are expecting to see oil above $60 by 4Q17. Many in the industry are also hopeful that this turnaround will increase drilling activity in the Gulf of Mexico. Which is the topic of this issue. Offshore exploration and production expenses are much higher than onshore, take shale production for example, and with a lower price per barrel as we’ve seen, it’s not cost effective for companies to drill offshore. Many companies are turning to big data, digital technology, and the internet of things (IoT) to improve future exploration and production. Equipment maintenance scheduling is an area companies are starting to use the data they capture. GE Oil & Gas uses data analytics to decrease the amount of time equipment is offline and improve its reliability by accurately predicting when servicing will be needed and schedule it in advance. By taking advantage of data to improve efficiencies, offshore operators will be in a better position during the market turnaround and reap the rewards.
Oil and gas companies are regularly faced with many industry-specific issues to overcome. Such issues, including exploration and drilling, are often complex and intricate processes with many unique challenges to overcome. Data analytics can play a massive part in streamlining some of the most fundamental operations that are involved in the oil and gas industry.