USW workers rally in front to the Shell Building and City Hall on Friday, March 6, 2015 in Houston, TX. (For the Chronicle by Thomas B. Shea)

UPDATE: Steelworkers, Shell reach tentative deal to end refinery strikes

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The union and Shell, which is representing the industry in the talks, had been in continuous negotiations since Monday.
A striking United Steelworker Union member picketing outside the the Shell Deer Park Refinery Sunday, Feb. 1, 2015, the fist day of the strike.
( James Nielsen / Houston Chronicle )

Union, Shell in longest stretch of contract talks yet

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The dispute started with nine facilities but has since expanded to 15 refineries and chemical plants nationwide.
(Kimberly White/Bloomberg News)

Fuel-thirsty California looks to Eastern Canada, Asia for supply

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Tankers are bound for California after a spate of refinery shutdowns that propelled the premium for the state’s special blend of gasoline to a seasonal record.
(Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

U.S. crude stores up by 4.5 million barrels

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The Energy Information Administration said Wednesday crude inventories jumped to 448.9 million barrels for the week ending March 6. Analysts, according to data compiled by Bloomberg, had anticipated an increase in stores of 4.75 million barrels.
Dave Washington, left, Bobbie Thompson, and Kevin Hyde, United Steel Workers Local 13-227 members, employed by LyondellBasell Industries Houston, hold a strike claiming unfair labor practices at the oil refinery plant Monday, Feb. 2, 2015, in Pasadena, Texas. (Gary Coronado/Houston Chronicle)

Fitch: Prolonged refinery strike could affect gasoline supplies

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Though the ongoing United Steelworkers strike hasn’t had much impact on the market for refined products yet, it could if the strike continues for much longer, according to a new report by Fitch Ratings.
In this Nov. 17, 2014 file photo, smoke rises from the Syrian city of Kobani, following an airstrike by the U.S.-led coalition, seen from a hilltop outside Suruc, on the Turkey-Syria border. The mass beheadings of Egyptian Christians by militants in Libya linked to the Islamic State group have thrown a spotlight on the threat the extremists pose beyond their heartland in Syria and Iraq, where they have established a self-declared proto-state. Militants in several countries - including Libya, Egypt, Algeria, Yemen and Saudi Arabia - have pledged allegiance to IS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. (AP Photo/Vadim Ghirda, File)

Activists say airstrike hits Islamic State-held oil refinery

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Video from the Turkish Dogan News Agency showed the strikes Sunday night, which saw an enormous fireball engulf the refinery.
USWRally

Steelworkers rally at Shell HQ as talks set to resume Wednesday

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The marchers started at City Hall and went on to various buildings of oil companies they are battling with over labor contracts.

Changing Seasons in Energyland™

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As the seemingly permanent blanket of snow in my yard lifted this week to reveal the green, green grass below (albeit briefly), I am reminded that seasons change. But it is not just clocks and landscapes that are undergoing a shift, but also a veritable variety of elements in energyland™. So here are some such […]
A very large smokestack flare burns off flammable product after an explosion in a processing facility at the ExxonMobil refinery in Torrance, Calif. on Wednesday, Feb. 18, 2015. A small ground fire was quickly extinguished and the facility's flare system was triggered for safety reasons. Two workers suffered minor injuries. (AP Photo/Daily Breeze, Chuck Bennett)

California State Senate holds hearing in Torrance on refinery explosion

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Refinery owner Exxon Mobil officials, first-responders and representatives of government environmental agencies were scheduled to appear at the public hearing at Torrance City Hall.
(Cody Duty/Houston Chronicle)

Steelworkers fire back over unfair labor practice charges

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The National Right to Work Foundation is providing legal help to three employees of LyondellBasell who filed unfair labor practice charges against the union.