• Army Colonel says he was retaliated against for blowing whistle on $43 million gas station

    Published: Tue, Nov 24, 2015

    An Army Colonel who blew the whistle on a task force that was responsible for building a $43 million gas station in Afghanistan says he is being retaliated against, according to a prominent U.S. senator. Army Col. John Hope was the director of operations for the $800 million task force when he questioned its lack of accountability, and then said he had “been singled out for retaliation and retribution” for “speaking truth,” according to a letter Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) sent to Defense Secretary Ashton Carter last week. The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction recently released a scathing report on one of the task force’s programs — the $43 million compressed natural gas station, which the IG said should have cost closer to $500,000.

  • 4.4, 3.0 magnitude Oklahoma earthquakes recorded Monday near site of Thursday's 4.7

    BY ALTHEA PETERSON, Tulsa World | Published: Mon, Nov 23, 2015

    The U.S. Geological Survey recorded two more Oklahoma earthquakes earlier today. First, a 3.0 magnitude temblor recorded 12:31 p.m. about 9 miles south-southwest of Cherokee in Alfalfa County. The epicenter was a few miles south of Thursday's 4.7 magnitude quake, which was the state's largest recorded since 2011.

  • USGS: Oklahoma has 'unheard of' seismicity that might produce 6.0 quake, but Cushing efforts indicate problem is manageable

    BY COREY JONES, Tulsa World | Published: Mon, Nov 23, 2015

    Oklahoma’s surge in seismic activity has cultivated a swath of land with earthquake sequences “unheard of” in any other comparably sized area of the globe and may also produce a 6.0 temblor, according to a U.S. Geological Survey geophysicist. But some efforts to mitigate quakes that rattled Cushing a year ago — through more stringent wastewater disposal regulations — have yielded positive empirical results, and it’s a clear indicator that  the issue of induced seismicity  is manageable. That’s according to Daniel McNamara, a USGS research geophysicist at the National Earthquake Information Center. Oklahomans remain shaken up as the state blasts through its earthquake record from only a year ago . In August Oklahoma surpassed 2014’s banner year of 584 earthquakes of 3.0 magnitude or greater. In 2015, Oklahoma Geological Survey data show a staggering 802 quakes of those magnitudes through Sunday afternoon.

  • Oil industry study indicates few Oklahoma wells are linked to earthquakes; USGS geophysicist thinks percentage is larger

    By COREY JONES, Tulsa World | Published: Tue, Nov 17, 2015

    A report on earthquakes released Tuesday by the oil and natural gas industry seeks to highlight that a relatively minute number of wastewater-disposal wells in Oklahoma and nationwide can be linked to induced seismisity. However, a spokeswoman for the group acknowledges that many of the studies cited in the report use models rather than actual wells, making such figures “speculative.” While scientists tend to agree that a small number of wells probably contributes to earthquakes, a research geophysicist with the U.S. Geological Survey said the report understates how many wells probably are involved but can’t yet be scientifically proven to be due to lack of resources and the complexity of the problem. Energy In Depth, a campaign of the Independent Petroleum Association of America, produced the report.

  • Energy Transfer Partners, Sunoco LP announce $2.2 billion drop-down deal

    Published: Mon, Nov 16, 2015

    Energy Transfer Partners announced a $2.2 billion so-called drop-down deal Monday that will complete the strategy announced last fall of transferring its high quality retail and field distribution assets to Sunoco LP. Dallas-based Energy Transfer Partners announced Monday that it will sell to Sunoco LP its remaining 68.42 percent interest in Sunoco LLC and 100 percent interest in the legacy Sunoco retail business.  The approximately $2.226 billion transaction will be effective as of Jan. 1, 2016, and is expected to close in February 2016, according to the company.

  • Williams employees updated on merger during town hall

    BY CASEY SMITH, Tulsa World | Published: Fri, Nov 13, 2015

    It's business as usual at Williams Cos. That's a primary message that employees of the Tulsa-based pipeline company received during an internal town hall meeting Tuesday, according to a document Williams Cos. filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Thursday. "Both Williams and ETE recognize that employees have many questions, but reinforce that as of right now, nothing has changed: it’s business as usual," the document reads under a section titled "What's Next?"

  • Tulsa energy company reports 40 percent decrease in 2015 earnings

    BY CASEY SMITH, Tulsa World | Published: Thu, Nov 12, 2015

    Helmerich & Payne Inc. reported Thursday a net income of $422 million from operating revenues of $3.2 billion for its fiscal year that ended Sept. 30, compared to net income of $709 million from operating revenues of $3.7 billion for its prior fiscal year that ended September 30, 2014. The Tulsa-based drilling company’s full-year net income works out to $3.87 per diluted share for fiscal year 2015, down 40 percent compared to the $6.46 per diluted share earned during fiscal year 2014. Included in net income per diluted share for fiscal years 2015 and 2014 are approximately $0.86 and $0.23, respectively, in after-tax income related to a combination of select items including long-term contract early termination compensation, gains from the sale of investment securities, abandonment charges and impairment charges.

  • 44 Oil Executives and Truck Drivers Were Just Arrested for a Multimillion-Dollar Scam

    Published: Thu, Nov 12, 2015

    Dozens of New York City-area energy industry executives and truck drivers were arrested Tuesday as part of a law enforcement probe into a suspected scam on customers. DNAinfo reports the bust includes over 40 "owners, executives and truck drivers from some of the city's largest fuel oil companies" who police accuse of rigging oil trucks to shortchange customers on heating oil. The alleged scammers, who DNAinfo reported include eight owners of fuel companies and three transportation depots, are accused of scamming developers and city agencies, including police and fire departments and those serving "the homeless and city schoolchildren." Alleged victims also included the owners of smaller buildings who purchased oil from the companies implicated.

  • Production grows at WPX Energy, but losses mount

    BY ROBERT EVATT, Tulsa World | Published: Wed, Nov 4, 2015

    Although WPX Energy reported record liquids production for their third quarter, losses at the Tulsa-based company continue to grow. WPX reported third-quarter revenue of $537 million, compared to $747 million in the third quarter of 2014. The company also reported a net loss of $234 million, or a loss of 93 cents per share, compared to net income of $62 million, or 30 cents per share, in the previous year. Losses have continued to mount, as the second-quarter loss was $30 million, and the first quarter had net income of $67 million. The company noted that significantly lower commodity costs decreased revenue by $159 million in the third quarter.

  • Magellan Midstream Partners posts solid gains, stock soars

    BY SAMUEL HARDIMAN, Tulsa World | Published: Wed, Nov 4, 2015

    Magellan Midstream Partners attributed its third-quarter success to high gasoline demand that drove volume through the company’s pipelines, as well as some issues at refineries that forced more product into Magellan pipes. The company posted earnings per share of $0.86 in the third quarter, which a sizable increase from the $0.68 a share guidance the company offered in August. Magellan’s stock rose on the good earnings news, up to $69.14 at the end of the day from $66.94 at the market’s opening.

  • Revenue drops sharply at ONEOK Partners, but profits outpace 2014

    BY ROBERT EVATT, Tulsa World | Published: Tue, Nov 3, 2015

    Revenue declined sharply year-over-year during ONEOK Partners' third quarter, but that didn't stop the company from boosting its profits. The Tulsa-based natural gas company reported third quarter revenue of $1.5 billion, down from $2.8 billion during the third quarter of 2014. However, net income rose to $226.9 million for the quarter, or 45 cents per share, up from $167.2 million, or 32 cents per share, the same time last year.

  • Lawmakers get update on earthquakes as Oklahoma on pace for 1,000 quakes this year

    BY BARBARA HOBEROCK, Tulsa World | Published: Fri, Oct 30, 2015

    The 90-day average of earthquakes has dropped, but the state still could see up to 1,000 temblors this year, a legislative panel was told Friday. The presentation was part of an interim study on earthquakes. Jeremy Boak, Oklahoma Geological Survey director, said the 90-day average for earthquakes in July began to go down. It dropped from about 5.0 per day to 3.5 per day, he said.

  • Oklahoma gasoline prices could fall even more

    BY JOHN STANCAVAGE, Tulsa World | Published: Thu, Oct 22, 2015

    The common price of regular unleaded gasoline dipped below $2 a gallon in Tulsa on Thursday afternoon, about a month after rising above that mark. Many convenience stores were posting $1.99 in the city, down from $2.02 the day before. “I wouldn’t say we’re in a free fall, but it’s definitely a nosedive,” said Chuck Mai, a spokesman for travel club AAA-Oklahoma.

  • Study: Quakes linked to injection well activity dating back to 1920s

    BY CURTIS KILLMAN, Tulsa World | Published: Wed, Oct 21, 2015

    A new study by the U.S. Geological Survey links injection well activity to most of the strong earthquakes in Oklahoma occurring not only in recent years, but throughout the 20th century. The study, released Tuesday, found that strong statistical evidence points to wastewater injection well activity as the cause of most Oklahoma earthquakes with a magnitude of 3.5 and greater. The evidence indicates there is a less than 1 percent chance that the correspondence between earthquakes 3.5 magnitude and greater occurring in the same area as injection well activity were random events, said Susan Hough, a USGS seismologist who was a co-author of the study along with colleague Morgan Page.

  • VIDEO: Tank explosion at Owasso rock quarry captured on helmet camera

    FROM TULSA WORLD STAFF REPORTS | Published: Wed, Oct 14, 2015

    A firefighter with the Limestone Fire Protection District had a camera mounted to his helmet that captured the moment a tank exploded at Tulsa Asphalt Monday. A fire at an Owasso rock quarry Monday caused a fuel tank at the site to explode, injuring three firefighters and sending two to the hospital. The blaze drew a large emergency response to Tulsa Asphalt, located near 66th Street North and 129th East Avenue.  The fire started Monday morning while employees were cleaning the tanks. The cause of the blaze is under investigation, according to Rogers County Emergency Management Director Scott Stokes.

  • Tulsa-based Williams Cos. outlines policy for possible layoffs

    BY JOHN STANCAVAGE, Tulsa World | Published: Mon, Oct 12, 2015

    More information has begun to bubble up about the proposed $37.7 billion merger between Tulsa-based Williams Cos. and Energy Transfer Equity LP. In a recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Williams said it did not anticipate widespread layoffs. Prior to this, Dallas-based ETE had said only that it would keep a “meaningful presence” in Tulsa. “We don’t expect the large majority of Williams employees to be impacted by potential severance,” Williams says in the latest filing.

  • Report: Williams Cos. investors file class action suit over ETE sale

    BY CASEY SMITH, Tulsa World | Published: Tue, Oct 6, 2015

    Two Williams Cos. investors filed a putative class action suit against the Tulsa-based energy company Monday, alleging that the $37.7 billion sale to Energy Transfer Equity announced last week undervalues Williams Cos. The lawsuit was reported by  Law360 , a subscription-based legal news service operated by LexisNexis subsidiary the Portfolio Media company. According to the Law360 report, the suit against Williams was filed in Delaware Chancery Court by Williams Cos. investors Richard Greenwald and Joyce B. Greenwald. 

  • Williams Cos. sold in $37.7 billion deal; ETE says it will keep a 'meaningful presence' of jobs in Tulsa

    FROM TULSA WORLD STAFF REPORTS | Published: Tue, Sep 29, 2015

    With more than 1,000 employees in Tulsa, the fate of Williams Cos. has been the source of much speculation since Dallas-based Energy Transfer Equity began pursuing it this summer. On Monday morning, ETE announced that it would buy Williams in a $37.7 billion deal. Energy Transfer Equity LP will pay $43.50 per share, a 4.6 percent premium to Williams’ Friday closing price of $41.60. Williams shares plummeted more than 12 percent Monday.

  • Williams, ETE announce acquisition in $37.7 billion deal

    FROM TULSA WORLD STAFF REPORTS | Published: Mon, Sep 28, 2015

    Dallas-based Energy Transfer Equity announced Monday morning that it would buy Tulsa-based Williams Cos. in a $37.7 billion merger deal. Energy Transfer Equity LP will pay $43.50 per share, a 4.6 percent premium to Williams' Friday closing price of $41.60. Williams' stockholders can choose shares of Energy Transfer Equity affiliate Energy Transfer Corp., cash or a combination of both. Williams' stockholders will also receive a one-time special dividend of 10 cents per share that will be paid immediately before the acquisition closes.

  • Report: Williams Cos. board to consider revised offer as early as this week

    BY CASEY SMITH, Tulsa World | Published: Wed, Sep 23, 2015

    Williams Cos. board of directors could meet as early as this week to consider a revised offer from Energy Transfer Equity, according to an exclusive report from  Reuters  on Wednesday. The article states that ETE has changed its original all-stock offer to buy Williams. Under the new deal, ETE would pay for about 15 percent of the Tulsa-based pipeline company in cash. Reuters reported that its anonymous sources are cautioning that the exact amount of cash the deal could include is still being negotiated.