Simone Sebastian

Simone Sebastian

Simone is assistant editor for She's an award-winning journalist who has covered energy for the Houston Chronicle and education for the San Francisco Chronicle, among other major newspapers. You can follower her on Twitter, @SimonesNews. Contact her at 713-362-6145 or

Environmentalists fault oil industry for Hurricane Isaac accidents

Environmental groups say more than 90 possible leaks occurred during the storm. But many cases were small and federal agencies say damage to oil and natural gas facilities has been minor.  More »

Gulf Coast refineries look seaward for sales

When operators of Alliance refinery began efforts to shed the Louisiana facility in December, it became the latest in a string of U.S. refineries put on the block.  More »

Refinery workers on list of disappearing jobs

Petroleum pump operators are expected to lose 6,200 jobs between 2010 and 2020, a 14 percent decline, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.  More »

Shell to build world’s first oil sands CCS project

The carbon capture and storage project will cut more than a million tons of carbon from oil sands production in Alberta annually, Shell leaders said.  More »

Exit signs consuming billions of kilowatt hours each year

Businesses and other building owners are spending about $3 billion a year to keep exit signs illuminated 24 hours a day, seven days a week, according to federal information.  More »

Gulf of Mexico production ramps up after Isaac

Most of the offshore crews that evacuated ahead of Hurricane Isaac have returned, but more than half of Gulf of Mexico oil production remains shut in.  More »

RNC speakers talk energy

From Ann Romney to Clint Eastwood, here’s what key speakers at the Republican National Convention had to say about the nation’s energy issues.  More »

Fracturing sand industry launches group to address local worries

A new trade group in Wisconsin has developed standards for its members, which produce sand for hydraulic fracturing, to reassure skeptics that the business is safe and environmentally responsible.  More »

Debate swirls around new federal fuel efficiency mandate

While proponents herald the Obama Administration’s new vehicle fuel efficiency mandate as a win for the environment and economy, critics say say it could put drivers at risk.  More »

Yoko Ono launches anti-fracking artists coalition

Yoko Ono and her son Sean Lennon are launching a coalition of artists, musicians and filmmakers against hydraulic fracturing in New York state.  More »

TPC Group would go private with sale

A major producer of a key chemical in synthetic rubber, whose shortage has sent tire prices rising, would be sold to private equity firms under a deal that one analyst said under-values the Houston company.  More »

TPC Group chemical company enters $850 million sale agreement

Houston petrochemical company TPC Group has entered a deal to sell ownership to private equity firms First Reserve Corp. and SK Capital Partners in a deal valued at $850 million in cash and net debt.  More »

Oil industry capital expenditures to jump 13 percent in 2012

Worldwide spending by oil and natural gas companies is on track to break $1 trillion this year, with North America commanding the largest portion, according to an analysis by GlobalData.  More »

Conference drills in on natural gas issues

Energy industry leaders called for policies that encourage natural gas production in the United States, saying during a downtown Houston event Wednesday that restrictions on domestic energy supply threaten the nation’s economic and environmental health.  More »

Gulf of Mexico well costs up 10 percent, ConocoPhillips exec says

New government regulations on blowout preventers are contributing to higher well costs, a ConocoPhillips executive said during an industry event in downtown Houston Wednesday.  More »
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