- A sharp production decline in March, combined with
- A sharp increase in well counts in February and March;
- The Manifa project, which had been put on the shelf, has been restarted; and
- Reports of a new paper by a senior Saudi oil official that oil production will not rise in the next five years.
In early March, I wrote a Qwest for Returns essay entitled Is Saudi oil production peaking? I pointed to the often cited US diplomatic cables from Wikileaks. Moreover, the blogger Satellite o'er the desert used Google Earth imagery found that the latest Haradah III development reached its production target using 60% more wells than originally projected.
In the words of the late Matt Simmons, when Saudi production peaks, so will the world.
That's why, despite my near term reservations about the markets, where an economic downturn would be devastating for commodity prices, I remain a long-term oil and commodity bull.