Berry Petroleum says CA moratorium to have no impact on 2019 performance
Berry Petroleum confirmed that today the Department of Conservation's Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources announced a series of initiatives directed at California's oil and gas industry, which are a result of legislation signed by Governor Gavin Newsom in October. One of the primary initiatives is a "moratorium (which) prohibits new extraction wells that use a high-pressure cyclic steaming process to break apart a geological formation to extract oil." Following the release, Berry announced that this moratorium will not impact the company's 2019 financial performance and only potentially impacts its future thermal diatomite wells. Additionally, the company said it has "an extensive bullpen of drilling opportunities and a diverse asset portfolio providing Berry with the opportunity to continue to generate top-tier shareholder returns." Trem Smith, Berry's Chair, CEO and President, said: "Berry's operations are designed to be nimble with the ability to respond in such a way as to accommodate and address this dynamic regulatory environment. We will continue to create and deliver top-tier value for our shareholders. We also remain committed to partnering with the state to bring affordable energy to all Californians in an environmentally sensitive and responsible manner-something we have already been doing proactively. However, in our opinion, this moratorium is not the most effective way to manage the industry and doesn't take into consideration the unintended consequences of such actions. These initiatives have the potential to have a lasting negative impact on Kern county in particular. The moratorium benefits only countries that export oil to California such as OPEC countries, which have poor social justice and environmental records, pay no California taxes and don't employ our citizens."