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Qatar reported Dec. 3 it would withdraw from the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries on Jan. 1, 2019, putting an end to its 57-year membership of the oil producers’ cartel. Qatar, which said it intends to focus on its natural gas production, made the announcement ahead of the Dec. 6 OPEC meeting.

ConocoPhillips has set a capital expenditure budget for 2019 of $6.1 billion, which is flat to its expected full-year 2018 capex, excluding acquisition costs. The 2019 budget does not reflect potential dispositions that may occur in 2019.

Hess Corp. will allocate some 75% of its $2.9-billion 2019 exploration and production capital and expenditure budget to high-return growth assets in the Bakken and in Guyana. Net production is forecast to average 270,000-280,000 boe/d in 2019, excluding Libya, compared with 245,000 boe/d in 2018. Bakken net production is forecast to average 135,000-145,000 boe/d in 2019.

Virginia Atty. Gen. Mark R. Herring (D) announced that the state’s Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) and Water Quality Board sued Mountain Valley Pipeline LLC (MVP) for alleged repeated environmental violations in five southwestern Virginia counties over the past year, particularly during major rain events.

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