<a href="http://youngpetro.org/2013/03/06/how-is-it-possible-to-produce-oil-from-sand/"><b>How is it possible to produce oil from sand?</b></a> <a href="http://youngpetro.org/2011/10/09/people-engineers-and-spe-members/"><b>People, Engineers and SPE Members</b></a> <a href="http://youngpetro.org/2012/12/19/if-i-were-a-prime-minister/"><b>If I Were a Prime Minister…</b></a> <a href="http://youngpetro.org/2012/12/26/polish-shales-delayed/"><b>Polish shales delayed?</b></a> <a href="http://youngpetro.org/2013/01/11/russia-continues-the-policy-of-states-companies-monopoly/"><b>Russia continues the policy of state companies’ monopoly</b></a>
 

Summer adventure with Schlumberger

Summer adventure with Schlumberger

For an ambitious student there is no better way to spend summer vacation rather than doing an internship and I was lucky enough to go for the six weeks during summer 2017 to UK as an intern in Drilling & Measurements Department, Schlumberger. Here is the story of one of the best summers I had so far…

We all started together, along with the rest of European interns, from HSE training and Introduction in Westhill, UK. For three days we had a possibility to discover company policies, structures and businesses. Taking the opportunity that we were at the moment all living together in the area of Aberdeen we were spending evenings sightseeing the city and getting to know each other. What’s more our wonderful mentor and my manager took us out one evening so we could talk in a more relaxed atmosphere. It was a great opportunity for us to meet other SLB’s employees and get an insight about their work.

After that we were transferred to our direct bases, which for me was in Dyce. Thanks to one of the trainees, who took care of us at the beginning we were able to get to know the base, daily life of all employees and spent some time in the workshop. We were learning about the tools and jobs that people do in the base do on a daily basis. Everyone were very friendly and willing to share their knowledge. It was a good experience to see how many projects are being handled there and how many people are working to provide the best service possible to the clients. We didn’t get the chance to get used to the office life because already at the end of our first week we got the info that we are starting offshore survival training in order to go offshore if needed. New adventure – great! The training took five days and started with two days of HSE training again. For a while I was irritated that we were repeating same things we’ve learned just a week ago but soon I understood why. I was aware of the fact that working in O&G Industry is demanding, often the environment is very harsh and dangerous, but I didn’t know that it is one of the safest Industries in the UK. According to researches it is even safer to work in O&G than in Education or Civil Engineering! And it is due to the fact that companies are investing in rising the awareness among their employees and in the newest technologies to make our work safer.

After every module of the training we were taking a test to prove the knowledge that we have gained and that we are ready to move on to further topics. The training was concluded with two days of practical training and assessment during which we needed to get out from a room on fire or escape drowning helicopter. Of course all of the exercises were just simulations and we were being observed by our instructors or divers but still the sensations were unforgettable. It was both scary and exciting to me and I was hoping that maybe we’ll get the chance to go offshore for few days if I’ll be lucky… But right after we finished the training on Friday we got the info that we’re actually going offshore on Monday. After a short briefing I knew that I was flying to Cork, Ireland and then to a drillship, StenaIceMAX as a sample catcher in Mud logging (Geoservices). I was supposed to stay there for one week which later extended to three weeks and it was great because I could learn much more about the drilling process, the ship, the services and people working there than during a few days stay.

I arrived on Tuesday very excited about my very first chopper flight and stay offshore. The ship and the crew was very helpful and friendly, they helped me very much to accommodate on the ship, which was important to me as a newbie offshore. I also needed to get used to the night shift and it took me few days. At the moment they were not drilling but running a riser hence there’s not much work for mudlogging and we’re getting ready for drilling which was planned to start on Saturday so I was preparing bags for the samples, labelling them and in the meantime observing mud engineer testing sensors. As drilling started I needed to collect various samples of the cuttings and the mud. It isn’t a rocket science but as you are constantly observing drilling parameters (to know when you should go for the next sample or when you can expect a little break to have a dinner ;))  you’re learning about the correlations between them and the drilling process. I also learned from our Data Analyst, that it is important to pay attention if there are notably bigger pieces of rock showing on shakers as this may be a sign of increasing pressure in the formation. Whenever the ROP was allowing me to have a break I was looking at samples with our Mud loggers and geologists, later I learned how to do calcimetry (a test allowing to determine the amount of calcium carbonate in our cuttings). There were some nights quite tiring, for example when we were drilling quite fast – 40 m/h therefore I was catching samples every 15 minutes so after that I was sore and tired but thankfully this marvelous ship is equipped with sauna which brought me a huge relief. During drilling few breaks I was spending my time with guys from MI-SWACO and our DA, who explained me lots of his job tasks, the technology behind the sensors that they’re using and measurements done, there, in mud logging. He showed me all the sensors and explained in the smallest bits how they work, you could tell that he’s really passionate about his job.

The plan for the next few days on the rig was to run the casing, cement it and start drilling the next section ASAP. Unfortunately, as there was a storm forecasted we needed to detach the riser from the seafloor due to safety reasons so that has postponed the drilling a little. Due to the weather conditions we also had problems with the internet connection. We spent those shifts on labeling and housekeeping because we needed to secure our loose equipment as well as the boxes with samples to avoid them moving during the storm. Fortunately we survived that storm, it wasn’t as bad as we expected it to be.

Stena IceMAX is the most expensive drillship ever built, our client was drilling an exploration, deepwater well so the technology that was being used there is very impressive. The aim of the internship is to learn as much as possible, so when there was no drilling I was visiting guys from different services, learning about Data Analyst or FLAIR Engineer job. I really enjoyed being a part of such a big and demanding project and I’m glad that I met there so many friendly people who were willing to share their knowledge. The thing that impressed me the most was the ROV equipment from Oceaneering company. It is used to control the work of BOP and the operations of running and disconnecting a riser. It amazes me that thanks to this technology we are able to work on the seabed which is 2 km below us and sometimes even observe some animals living there which were interested in this equipment. Like I said, the ship crew was extremely helpful and nice, the Assistant Driller took me to the very top of the derrick so I could see the whole platform and immensity of the ocean on the horizon, I was attending safety and organizational meetings with all of the most important people on the ship, I even took part in a training on Well Control organized during the drilling break. Even though there are so many different companies engaged in one project there is no rivalry, everyone are working together for the common target and are eager to cooperate.

During the internship I was assigned a project which was to carry out a calibration of Reserval Chromatoghraph and Total Hydrocarbon Gas. Reserval is the instrument used by Geoservices and it’s also the name of the service offered to clients. It’s aim is to determine the amount of alkanes containing in mud returns. Reserval gas system is an instrument which separates hydrocarbons alkanes containing from 1 to 5 (methane to normal-pentane) particles of carbon in a capillary column producing an analytical result via gas chromatography. It is also often the only instrument providing real time data regarding gas content. Calibration is a procedure that relates an output quantity to an input quantity and measures system under given conditions. Knowing the vapor point of measured gases the time of adsorption is determined and we can input this data to the Reserval. This way we can check exactly how much gas we have in a given interval of time.  Precise calibration validates the general function of the Reserval gas analyser and is mandatory when starting up the Reserval in a new location. Calibration check for this system has to be done every week and two Reservals are used- Main one and a backup. During my stay on the ship we had doubts whether the system is working correctly so considering the fact that there was no drilling planned for the day we decided to run a full calibration. The difference between full procedure and a check is as follows. During calibration we have to set the settings regarding times of adsorption, expected pressures and theoretical concentration of our gases to the system to be sure that they comply with original settings basing on Standard working instruction available to all employees. Calibration check is basing on the original settings and requires injecting predefined concentrations of gases. Calibration and quality checks are based on GSS-SWI-002-0021B standard working instruction. It is run by sequentially injecting various predefined concentrations of calibration gas to the Reserval and comparing the results to previous calibrations. If the difference exceeds 5% the recalibration must be performed. Once the calibration is completed the logs will be issued.

High-quality, reliable hydrocarbon analysis is critical for having safe and efficient drilling operations. Having knowledge about the content of C1-nC5 gases and total hydrocarbons (total gas) in mud returns gives the opportunity to monitor gas safety levels in shakers room and on a drill floor and characterize formations and reservoirs. Chromatograph calibration and regular quality checks provide certainty that the results and logs received from the gas system are accurate.

The amount of knowledge that I’ve gained during this internship is huge. Due to the fact I’m studying Petroleum Engineering I could apply my academic knowledge to the things I saw in the DnM base or on the ship but I would never be able to gain this amount of practical knowledge at the University. That is why I am grateful that I was given such a remarkable opportunity. DnM services are the center of drilling operations, they gather real time data and are vital to  successful and safe operations. Being a part of Schlumberger, even for a short time, has given me insight to all of the aspects of drilling, I was able to work along great professionals and my work was actually useful. I was given the tools, knowledge and tasks that were a part of daily life of the service. On the other hand  I could also see the perks of working in this industry – it often requires you to be away from home for long weeks, work in unusual and often unfriendly conditions and you never know when you’re coming back or how long you’ll stay at home, because you can be bumped from a helicopter and informed half an hour in advance (like I was). This is the reality of the Industry and I see it as a plus of the internship that no one will hide it from you. In my opinion, this unpredictability undoubtedly makes your life very adventurous, exciting and you get to travel a lot. I was also very lucky to be assigned to the Stena IceMAX, very high standard ship and I’m aware of the fact that not always the conditions offshore are that good. In conclusion, I think I came back from Scotland as a much more experienced engineer than I was before, I know that I will be able to use this knowledge in my future and I hope to come back there one day.

 

‘East meets West’ 2017!

‘East meets West’ 2017!

From 4th to 7th of April for the 8th time SPE AGH Chapter was organizing ‘East meets West’ International Student Petroleum Congress and Career Expo. We have gathered around 250 participants representing 26 countries and numerous companies from E&P sector. This year’s edition was special thanks to SPE International which enabled us to host European Qualifier to Student Paper Contest and Petrobowl. It is worth to mention that the winners of above contests will represent European region at ATCE Conference in October in San Antonio, Texas.

The winner of SPC Undergraduate was Wojciech Labuda, from AGH UST with the paper on ‘Profitability calculations of abandoned mine methane production in the Upper Silesian coal basin’. In the Postgraduate category the best was Dongue Dongue Dietrich Kevin representing Imperial College London, with the ‘Study of grid effects on leak-off rate calculation for a numerical fracture propagating model’. The best from PhD’s was Marsha Maraj from London South Bank University presenting the paper on ‘Deriving the pore size distribution of selected reservoir material using a combined microCT and NMR approach’.

Traditionally, we had the Poster Session during which selected students could present the results of their researches and compete in the contest. All the contestants presented a very high substantive level and Yiqun Liu from DTU was announced the winner. Needless to say, emotions were running high during Petrobowl Contest. It gathered 23 teams from Europe and Caspian Region and resulted in 5 teams which will represent this region at ATCE. They were from University of Stavanger, Herriot Watt-, Gubkin-, Leoben University and the best team- AGH UST! Congratulations to all, it was a pleasure to watch you!

Debates are always a very popular point in EMW’a agenda. It was no different this year with „HSE Aspects in Oil & Gas Industry” and „Womens role in modern O&G Industry” debates. The panelists who have taken part were extremely experienced professionals and thank to that the audience could gain knowledge, interact by asking questions and raise a discussion. Both panels showed that the future of our Industry and the situation of women in s.t  is bright despite the crisis.

This Conference though wouldn’t have been such a success if not for the Partnering Companies: MOL Group, Schlumberger, Baker Hughes, EuRoPol GAZ and PGNiG. Their support enabled to organize the Congress, gave students the opportunity to find out about the chances of employment and take part in the recruitment organized by Schlumberger.

This conference is and always has been all about bringing young people together in the center of Europe, creating the environment which will enable them to gain knowledge, exchange experience and develop friendships. Seeing you all there was a true reward for the year of preparations and I hope that our efforts will resulted in fruitful event and great memories. If you haven’t take part in this edition – do not worry, next year we see each other in Krakow with even bigger amount of knowledge and experiences!

New technology for geothermal wells by Baker Hughes

New technology for geothermal wells by Baker Hughes

Even though oil and gas wells are the majority of all the wells drilled around the world, we all know that drilling also applies for water wells, geoengineering  and geothermal energy. This sustainable source of energy is growing in its popularity although it requires highly advanced technologies. Geothermal energy utilizes the heat from the Earth to generate electricity and to provide heating for various structures. The energy can either be used directly, in the form of geothermal wells which connect to sources of water and steam heated by the Earth, or indirectly, in the case of systems which pump water through hot regions under the Earth’s crust.

Lubricants, drilling fluid and all of the equipment needs to be resistant to extremly high temperatures and demanding conditions. In order to overcome these challenges Baker Hughes, which has worked on almost all the geothermal wells ever developed, developed and successfully demonstrated an advanced drilling system designed for these critical conditions.

Using full metal drill bit to break the formation, and a full metal drilling motor known in the Industry as a “metal-to-metal motor” achieved a directional deep well. This innovative system, thanks to it remarkable advancement and reliability can have a far-reaching impact and successful future achead. Not only does this technology opens more geothermal resource areas for development, other subsurface sectors such as fossil and nuclear energy are ready to embrace this recent development. These sectors can leverage the work funded by the geothermal energy sector for their own gains.

It is not yet possible to estimate economic potential of this techonology but expanding Enhanced Geothermal Systems alone could eventually lead to more than 100 gigawatts of economically viable electric generating capacity in the continental United States—enough to power more than 100 million homes.

Thanks to such a investments of companies in developing new technologies and research, we can create path toward improved energy security and a stronger economy.

 

Sources:

www.bakerhughes.com

www.energy.gov

http://www.wisegeek.com

BP delivered a massive jobs boost.

BP delivered a massive jobs boost.

Today BP has announced a commitment to stay at the North Sea for the next 40 years.  The installation of the modules for its Clair Ridge platform and the imminent arrival of the storage vessel Glen Lyon has been hailed as a “once in lifetime” double win for the region. Thanks to that investment they will be able to hire more than 500 people and exploit over one billion barrels of oil.

Since O&G sector is now going through hard time according to plummeting oil prices and driven down by reducing the employment, such information is a good sign that the industy will recover. More than 65,000 jobs have gone with more redundancies in the pipeline across the sector due to numerous projects being put on hold. Operators have slashed costs as profit margins have dropped significantly over the past two years.

In reference to Mr. Ian Wood’s opinion industry will recover in 5 years. The new jobs are linked to the hook-up and commissioning of the two projects with the work expected to last 18 months.

Source: http://www.oilandgaspeople.com

More offshore jobs in Norway since 2018.

More offshore jobs in Norway since 2018.

Since we have heard the assumptions that the price of oil will improve next year, many experts are announcing their opinions in this field. The Norwegian Oil and Gas Association has also published the report forecasting rise of need for recruitment by 2020.

The new report, conducted by the International Research Institute of Stavanger, says that the workforce will be declining till 2018, when it will bounce from the bottom and rise back to current levels by 2020- necessitating 13,000 new hires, in addition to the openings due to attrition.

“Based on the new figures we can affirm that those who start on a technological education in autumn 2016 are likely to be welcomed with open arms by the oil and gas industry once they have graduated,” said Karl Eirik Schjøtt-Pedersen, the Association’s CEO. On the other hand these are not yet optimistic informations for people currently looking for work or employed, because it shows that 10, 000 more positions will be reduced by 2018.

According to Prime Minister of Norway, Erna Solberg’s, speech the petroleum market is in tough situation now indeed, but exploration of North Sea would be there for three decades more. Solberg also encouraged industry to redouble its efforts to cut carbon emissions in its activities.

Source: http://www.maritime-executive.com

Oil prices will rally according to IEA report

22 February, 2016 News No comments
Oil prices will rally according to IEA report

Though trying to predict oil prices is said to be a fools game it is very hard to stay away from questioning. Especially because this market is volatile and the political situation is the main determinant. After watching prices crash through floor after floor in the worst slump for a generation, the industry is eager for answers and it gets it- the IEA predicts that global oil supply and demand to rebalance in coming years.

International Energy Agency is at the heart of global dialogue on energy, providing authoritative statistics and analysis. In its annual report, which was released today, says that the market will begin rebalancing in 2017 – and by 2021 the United States and Iran are seen leading production gains among non-OPEC and OPEC countries, respectively. This view is predicated on the expectation that U.S. shale oil production drops 600,000 bpd this year, and by 200,000 bpd in 2017. The IEA projects that global oversupply will be wiped out by 2018. Once the market will start to rebalance, prices will rise also, the availability of easy resources will rally. Thanks to efficiency gains IEA speculates growth of production by 1.2 million bpd in U.S. and global oil supply to rise by 4.1 million bpd from 2015-2021.

According to energy market long-term speculations are the most suitable. So far, shale bankruptcies have been limited to smaller outfits, the one thing the stress on companies hasn’t done is destroy production. Meanwhile, on the international scene, the Saudi-Russian accord announced Tuesday, to which Venezuela and Qatar have also signed up, would cap production at January’s levels.

See more: www.iea.org; www.bloomberg.com, www.oilprice.com

Great expectations – COP21.

Great expectations – COP21.

It has been over a month since Paris Climate Conference had place. That was the biggest meeting of its kind since the andoption of Kyoto Protocol in 1997 and it connected representatives of 196 countries from all over the world. The overarching goal of the Paris Agreement (global agreement that was negotiated) is to reduce greenhouse gas emission to limit the global temperature increase. Thinking about climate change and global warming we often think that it is connected with supporting the suistainable energy sources, blaming countries that base their energy production on conventionals and … this is partialy true, but how does it affect oil&gas sector?

In fact ten of the world’s big oil companies, mainly from Europe, jointly acknowledged that their industry must help address global climate change and said that they agreed with the United Nations’ goals of limiting global warming. This initiative was caused by the need of convincing skeptical world that energy companies, which base on fossil fuels, are serious about their impact on climate change problem. Even despite the fact that none of the American biggest oil companies took part in this statement Mr. Dudley, who is chief executive of BP, told reporters in Paris: “I think we can make the difference, almost every company here has large investments in the United States.” Changing the world’s energy mix is not easy. It will take time. Even with an exponential increase in investment in alternative energy, forecasts predict that fossil fuels will still make up a large share of the energy mix in 2040. Less than the 80% share of today, but almost certainly well over 50%.

Supplying growing need of world’s population in energy and lowering greenhouse gas emissions requires technology development and transparent reporting. Oil and Gas Climate Initiative listed actions and instruments that they plan to introduce. Those included cleaning up their own operations, reducing methane emissions that escape from oil and gas installations, internal award, compensation schemes and exchange of information. Many experts say that solutions like putting a price on carbon or the trading of carbon-emission permits will only inevitably rise the prices of fuels, but still are most efficient. The carbon tax paid by Statoil in Norway has for decades been the highest in the world. That has helped them to be one of the most carbon-efficient producers of oil and gas in the world. It works.

What is more, not all fossil fuels produce the same amount of carbon dioxide when consumed. Shell and Total have already invested in natural gas bussiness in recent years, which emits much less carbon than oil and two times less than coal. So, replacing coal with gas in the power sector would reduce emissions in the EU by around 450m tonnes of CO2 a year.

Taking a more global look on the global warming unfortunately only EU countries are strongly commited to reduce emissions so goods produced by local companies become more expensive, customers choose those produced in developing countries, for example China, which contribution to carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is 30% and that creates a vicious cirle. Provided that China will stop the rise of greengases emission till 2035 other fast developing countries like India, south Asian, South American and African countries (together hold 20-30% of world’s CO2 emission) will not accept any of the restrictions unless they will get refund. If it comes to United States, contribution is 15%, The Byrd–Hagel Resolution is in force, what means that they cannot enter into any international treaty that could be harmful for their economy, but happily shale revolution which takes place there nowadays will enable lowering emission. With almost 0% of emission these countries are affected the most, but also their voice is the weakest- Small Island States such as Bahamas and Maldives. While others count financial profits and losses for these countries further rise of water in oceans may mean the end of their existance.

The agreement in Paris matters enormously. Not because it brings solutions and firm treaty that will be strictly kept by all the participants. But what it does, is that it has a vital value of creating a place for discussion and shows that diversity is important and even choices that every member of society make everyday matter. Pessimism will not bring about radical change. And pessimism will not orient us towards the solutions for climate change.

Sources:

http://www.theguardian.com/

http://www.nytimes.com/

An Essential Skill Many Graduates Lack

An Essential Skill Many Graduates Lack

What comes to mind when we talk about skills future employers want to see in recent graduates is; communication, problem solving, leadership, creativity, and adaptability skills. While such skills are undoubtedly in demand, an essential skill many employers want graduates to have which you might not even have thought about is called quantitative reasoning skill. You are probably wondering what quantitative reasoning skill is all about? To give you a little bit of understanding, consider the following example:

You are given a calculation based question to solve, and you are asked to take a decision based on the result you get from your calculation. The decision might be to either invest in a new business opportunity or not, or to choose a product based on the product’s price and quality and the list goes down. The skill required to take such decisions is called quantitative reasoning.

What is quantitative reasoning skill?

Quantitative reasoning skill ( QR ) is the ability to understand and use quantitative information to come to a solid conclusion. It involves the application of basic mathematical, and critical thinking skills to draw justified conclusions from facts and evidence available at hand. QR is considered among the most important intellectual skills such as communication fluency, information literacy, and analytical thinking that all university graduates should acquire.

Why QR is so important?

The importance of QR skill comes from the fact that it is a real world skill that future employers want you to have. Whether you are taking engineering, science, or even arts major, quantitative reasoning is a skill everyone need these days. There is no major I can think of that does not need a quantitative understanding. Whether you are still student, recent graduate or even having a career right now, cultivating this skill is a crucial factor that will determine how successful you will be.

But, do all graduates have this important skill?

As a recent graduate, I can tell you the answer. Not all students who graduate have this skill. And even those graduates who have QR skill, it may not be as strong as required by employers. The issue comes down to few reasons. First of all, students are often not informed by the academia about the importance of this skill in their career readiness and life in general. Therefore, they can not develop something they do not know its benefits for them or why they need it in their career.

The second reason is the misconception that QR skill is already thought in math classes. The truth is, there is a huge difference between QR and math. It is true that QR utilizes the basic mathematical skills in getting the calculation result, however it is more about the meaning of the calculation results rather than how to perform the calculation itself. As a result, academic subjects are more into recalling math procedures rather than encouraging students to think critically about problems in real-life contexts.

How do you cultivate and develop QR skills?

For you to have the ability to understand and use statistical data to make informed decisions, you must first have a sense of numbers, measurements and what they really represent. This is due to the fact that your accurate sense of numbers and measurements backed by a strong mathematical knowledge base is what will enable you to make accurate conclusions.

Once that put in place, the next step is to practice quantitative reasoning in diverse settings. Find problems that require you to think critically, analyze data, interpret numbers to reach decisions based on those results you get from solving such problems. A better way is to practice solving problems in real-life contest. That means taking problems from current real-life events. This will surely motivates you to go beyond recalling procedures and solving mathematical problems to think critically about the result you get and relate what you learn to the real life.

As a student or recent graduate or even having an entry level career, you need QR skills more than any other skills in your daily life and your career readiness. Strong quantitative reasoning skills will allow you to make sense of complex situations in your everyday life and enable you to make informed choices and decisions. It is never too late to learn something new, if you have that skill, make it better, and if you do not have it, go and cultivate it.

The O&G Industry Downturn: What It Means For Recent Grads? And How To Survive It?

The O&G Industry Downturn: What It Means For Recent Grads? And How To Survive It?

It was June 2014 when the oil and gas industry started to experience a downward market. Oil prices fell sharply to around $70 per barrel by November 2014, and this marked an end to a four-year period of price stability above $100 per barrel. Besides the geopolitical and economic factors responsible for the drastic change in oil prices, the prominent factor for the crash of oil prices was the unbalance between supply and demand.

According to the December 2014 monthly update of the United States Energy Information Administration ( EIA ), there was an increase in supply of liquid fuels by 1.8 million B/D to 92 million B/ in 2014, whereas demand did not keep pace. The global demand was low due to high oil prices for too long and low economic activities. On the other hand, supply was up because of U.S. shale oil boom, and the return of Libya’s production. Decreased demand and increased supply directly leads to low oil prices.

It was expected that the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries would play its conventional role of protecting the oil prices by reducing its quota to balance the supply and demand as it always did. However, what OPEC did was totally the opposite. OPEC decided to not cut production in a new strategy to protect its market-share. Consequently, the O&G industry was dealt a crushing blow. The crash in oil prices has led to many layoffs, spending cut backs, project deferrals, service price deflation, renegotiation and significant delays at major projects and this officially announces that the O&G industry is in a downturn.

What The Downturn Means For Recent Grads?

The crash in oil prices especially after November 2014 -when OPEC decided to stick to its market-share strategy- has led to many layoffs from both operating and service companies along with a slowdown in the hiring activities or completely putting a freeze on hiring. As a consequence, many O&G professionals have lost their jobs and fresh graduates are finding it extremely hard to secure a job in an industry they spent four years earning an entry ticket to.

The increase in the number of people seeking jobs -both due to the current layoffs that left many professionals unemployed and recent graduates- accompanied with few or no job postings from O&G companies has undoubtedly made 2014 a pivotal point where a transition in the market type from “candidate-driven market” to a “client-driven market” took place.

In a client-driven market where demand for jobs is much higher than what is being offered, the competition is extremely high and the possibilities of securing a job is much lower especially for recent graduates. Job applicants with experiences and job training are more preferred than recent graduates in such a market. This is due to the fact that the value they add to the company comes much faster than what fresh graduates do, and this is due to the longer time required to train fresh graduates.

Even in the case of fresh graduates job openings; in a client-driven market, O&G companies are at an advantage of having a chance to choose the best candidates with even less salary. This is due to the fact that in a client-driven market, many applicants compete over few job openings unlike in a candidate-driven market where prospective candidates are currently working, and there is a need for new workforce which gives an advantage for any applicant to get the job with less competition.

Low oil prices and its consequences on the hiring activities has also driven many petroleum related courses’ graduates to either divert into different industries -sometimes not even related to their field of study- or spend their time at home doing nothing other than killing time waiting for the market to recover. It is true that fresh graduates and professionals who lost their jobs due to the crash in oil prices are experiencing a bad time, but this is the price to keep the industry going and guarantee an even-keeled revenue stream and business sustainability.

How Can Recent Grads Survive The Downturn?

It is important to keep in mind that the oil and gas business is boom and bust by nature, this is not the first price bust in the O&G industry and definitely will not be the last. A similar downturn occurred in the late 1980s through the 1990s and the most recent downturn occurred in 2008. Downturns are harsh realities that can not be avoided as it is the nature of this business. What you can do as a recent graduate who is passionate about this industry is to navigate the industry during the downturn in the following ways:

1- Keep in mind that it will get worse before it gets better as the current events in 2015 are indicating signs of no price recovery such as the continuous increase in production from Iraq, Iran and Libya and few other countries, China’s dramatic slowdown, refining maintenance season which is about to begin soon, Greek crisis and lifting sanctions from Iran. Knowing that things will get worse will ignite the fire within you to take the following advice seriously and work hard.

2- Get informed about the current events in the oil and gas industry. Know where layoffs happened, which sectors are more affected and which are still having employment activities and apply for them. Besides, knowing where new projects are taking place will help you to increase your possibilities of getting a job by applying for jobs in response to the need.

3- Diversify. This means keeping your petroleum engineering skills broad. It doesn’t matter what your focus is or what your final year project was, you should learn about other engineering disciplines, and read more. It also means cultivating new skills that will surely set you apart from the rest of your peers.

4- Widen your connections. This is a very crucial point not only for getting a job, but also for your career development and success. Create a LinkedIn profile if you do not have one, make it professional, start adding people and network with them. Attend conferences and events related to your industry. All those will help you widen your network, which comes with an advantage of increasing opportunities.

5- Volunteering. Volunteering during a downturn has career benefits. Apart from enhancing your industry network which surely can help you get a job, it develops your leadership skills, provides a résumé boost, and it gives you access to technical information. Never underestimate the outcomes of any volunteer activity even if it is not related to your field of study. Just go for it, and learn. Chances are, it will pay you back later.

6- Get a job that will help you be independent and support you to make a living. It does not matter where as long as you work, and make money. And if you can afford to further your education, do so. This adds value and helps increase your chances of getting a job later especially if you further your study in business administration, finance and so on.

The downturn is going nowhere at least for the end of 2015, and it is your decision how to react to that. If the O&G industry is your passion, I trust you will fight and win the battle. But before that happens, a lot must be done, so start now.

Plans for the better.

Plans for the better.

Third largest integrated energy company in the U.S. and the fifth largest refiner in the world ConocoPhilips, said it is planning to add drilling rigs in 2017 in essential shale acreage in the United States, because it expects a recovery in the price of crude oil. Conoco, after cutting its asset spending plan nearly 30 percent this year, to $11.5 billion, told investors it expected to increase the number of rigs in its Eagle Ford acreage in South Texas to 12 in 2017 from an average of 7 this year. In North Dakota’s Bakken, the rigs will double to 10 in the same period. Theese bold steps stem from the belief in the long-term viability of drilling for shale oil.  As we all know oil&gas industry is cyclical, it runned high over the last decade but when oil prices tumbled down 50 percent since June, to about $50 a barrel it, declined. Conoco’s chief executive, Ryan Lance, said that price recovery was likely to be “volatile”.

Source: http://www.nytimes.com