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Downstream news catch up: Week ending 9 May

Hydrocarbon Engineering,

RFS 2014

Possibly one of the biggest topics in discussion within the downstream industry last week was the RFS 2014 announcement from the EPA. API Group Director for Downstream, Bob Greco was very active in voicing his thoughts on the announcement. In a press briefing, Greco asked the EPA to include an adequate margin for error in order to protect consumers and preserve consumer choice. Greco also wrote to the US EPA Administrator saying that the EPA’s use of the waiver in 2014 is appropriate and necessary to acknowledge the ethanol blend wall and its potential to cause domestic product supply disruptions.

BIO, in a press release, said that the recent proposed rule for the 2014 RFS would increase emissions from the transportation sector and come very close to wiping out the reductions of the past four years. However, in the same release, BIO did welcome the White House National Climate Assessment.

Industry employment

For a long while, employment within the downstream sector and oil and gas industry as a whole has been a key topic of discussion on Energy Global and within Hydrocarbon Engineering. Last week, both Veolia and CH2M Hill announced their commitments to a UK government initiative to encourage more women to STEM subjects in hope of attracting more women to jobs in engineering.

A discussion of the skills gap and retirement was also brought to light on the website with a report from Mercer’s Energy Consulting practice. The company believe that the industry is in the middle of a talent crisis which could threaten the growth of oil and gas companies as well as the industry as a whole.

Q1 results

This time of year we see Q1 results. On Energy Global we reported that BASF saw a good start in its chemicals and agricultural business sections, however, there was a decline in sales for the company’s oil and gas segments. Chevron’s earnings for Q1 were announced and dropped from US$ 6.1 billion in Q1 2013 to US$ 4.5 billion for 2014. Chevron’s Chairman and CEO attributed this mainly to lower prices and volumes for crude oil. Energy Global also reported that Ametek’s Q1 results hit new highs. Records were reported for orders, sales, operating income and net income. 

Written by Claira Lloyd.

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