The IEA’s World Energy Investment 2017 report predicts a slight increase in oil and gas investment this year, rising by 3 percent. That comes after a plunge of 44 percent between 2014 and 2016, a steep drop off due to the crash in oil prices. In 2016 alone, spending on oil and gas fell by 26 percent from a year earlier, dropping to $650 billion. This year’s expected increase will halt the slide in spending. However, things are not all well. The only reason the industry might avoid another year of spending contraction is almost entirely due to U.S. shale, which will see investment increase by 53 percent. Investment in the Middle East and Russia is “resilient,” but the global oil industry on the whole is retreating from complex megaprojects that, while expensive, represent consistent sources of supply over the long run. Instead, oil companies are focusing on short-cycle […]