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By Robert Rapier on Dec 5, 2008 with no responses

Rank the Top 10 Oil Stories of 2008

As I recover from a backlog of work, one of the stories I plan to write is a post covering the top energy stories of 2008. Around that theme, Platts just put up a request for reader input on the top oil industry stories of 2008. Their poll runs until Christmas:

Rank the top 10 oil industry stories of 2008

Below is the way I would rank the Top 10. I had an easy time ranking the top five, but then it was more difficult to sort them out.

My top 10 oil industry stories of 2008:

  1. Crude prices soar in 1H, WTI tops $147, Brent right behind
  2. Prices collapse below $50 in 2H as demand retreats
  3. Ethanol’s struggles: VeraSun bankruptcy, others barely profitable, spreads collapse
  4. Push begins to lift offshore drilling ban in US; Obama and McCain differ on approach
  5. Capital crunch and low prices lead to deferred investment
  6. Shale gas supply in US surges, a new factor in supply/demand balance
  7. Credit crunch slows activity for once free-wheeling traders
  8. Diesel surges, gasoline/naphtha plunge; traditional cracks skewed
  9. Russian oil output to fall in 2008, first time in a decade
  10. Brazil subsalt finds continue to lift nation’s upstream prospects

A couple of options that weren’t on the list (I placed them in the suggestion box) were:

  • Peak oil becomes fashionable, then unfashionable again
  • Obama elected; potential major impact on energy policy
  • Feel free to share your own input. What other stories do you consider to be Top 10 material (not limited to the oil industry)?