EnergyWatch

News from the Houston Chronicle energy team
T. Boone Pickens (Photo: Associated Press)

T. Boone predicts good chances for natural gas legislation

After spending nearly three years and more than $80 million of his own money to tout his energy plan, billionaire oilman T. Boone Pickens says he finally is about to have something to show for his effort.  More »
A geologist contractor works to find pockets of oil near Prudhoe Bay in Deadhorse, Alaska. (Kevin Fujii/Houston Chronicle file photo)

Jobs outlook: 5K geoscientists, engineers to leave industry by 2014

In a survey out today, oil field services giant Schlumberger attempts to quantify the impact of the “great crew change” and suggests the oil and gas industry’s global workforce is likely to see more women and workers from developing nations fill the void left by retirees.  More »
BOEMRE Director Michael Bromwich in front of a mic in Houston the first week of September (Getty Images)

Bromwich: Can’t blame Seahawk bankruptcy on BOEMRE

The industry narrative is that Seahawk Drilling was done-in by the post-Macondo drilling moratorium. Michael Bromwich, the nation’s top offshore energy regulator, suggests the company’s woes pre-dated the Gulf spill.  More »
(Photo: David Paul Ohmer/Flickr)

FuelFix Newslinks |03.29.11|

Libyan Oil Co. under new management. More calls to end gas tax break. China will drive energy M&A.  More »
(Photo: Houston Chronicle file)

Is Texas electric competition working for consumers? Let’s look at an old bill

A colleague’s electric bill from 1995 seems to be quite a bit cheaper per kwh than her current bill. We look into whether current rates could beat her old bill.  More »
This 1957 Cadillac, once owned by Frank Sinatra, was allegedly purchased with illegal kickback funds by Bellaire's Jonathan Barnes. (Photo courtesy of Mecum Auctions)

Oil traders’ trial pushed back, Sinatra car auction set for mid-April

A pair of men accused of bilking LyondellBasell out of $80 million are scheduled for trial on Aug. 8, but filings raise the possibility of a plea deal. Some of the assets seized in the case, including a Caddy once owned by Frank Sinatra, go on the block next month.  More »
transocean_60_mins

60 Minutes: U.S. energy firms take advantage of foreign tax havens

The report mentioned two Houston oil and gas companies — offshore drilling contractor Transocean and oil field services firm Weatherford International — that recently moved their corporate headquarters to Switzerland.  More »
(Image: letocarri/Flickr)

Dreading the sunlight: Energy cos. comment on pending payment rules

One requirement of Congress’ post-recession Wall Street overhaul would force publicly traded energy firms to share details of their overseas payments. It’s supposed to reduce the risk of the “resource curse” in developing nations, but many in the industry say it would put them at a competitive disadvantage.  More »
(Photo: David Paul Ohmer/Flickr)

FuelFix Newslinks |03.28.11|

Love nat gas? Then learn to love oversight. Statoil scores deep-water permit. The divine hand of CO2.  More »

ConocoPhillips gets extension for Colorado campus plan

The Houston oil giant, which had been required to submit a final plan by early next month, as a follow-up to preliminary plan filed in late 2009, now has until April 6, 2012, to turn in the final plan.  More »
(Image: Jurvetson/Flickr)

Deep-water permitting process ‘not a black hole’ says Chevron

Getting back into the deep-water Gulf of Mexico for drilling has been a slow process, but it’s not because of a lack of communication, says Chevron’s Gary Luquette.  More »
Rep. Joe Barton, R-Texas (AP Photo/Haraz N. Ghanbari)

Lawmakers urge state, EPA to settle air pollution squabble

“These issues should be resolved,” said Rep. Joe Barton, R-Arlington, at a hearing in Houston of the battle between the Environmental Protection Agency and Texas regulators over the way air pollution permits are handled.  More »
An offshore rig drills for oil in the North Sea.  (Photo: Erik Christensen)

U.K. oil production tax may block $3 billion of field sales

The tax changes announced by the chancellor of the exchequer in this week’s budget will lower the value of fields on the block in the U.K. continental shelf, where deals have already been hampered by the cost of dismantling decades-old platforms, analysts and executives said.  More »
(Photo: David Paul Ohmer/Flickr)

FuelFix Newslinks |03.25.11|

Macondo lessons learned put to work. Texas/EPA battle better stop. Marcellus drilling fee possible.  More »
Chevron is drilling an exploration well into Moccasin Prospect on Transocean's Discoverer Inspiration, an ultra-deepwater drillship, located about 240 nautical miles from Leesville, Louisiana in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico shown Tuesday, March 30, 2010. The vessel has the capability to drill wells in 12,000 feet of water to a total depth of 40,000 feet. (Melissa Phillip/Chronicle)

Chevron says safety is priority with deep-water permit

Chevron Corp. says it is applying lessons learned from last year’s Deepwater Horizon accident to make sure the drilling project regulators approved on Thursday will be the safest well possible. The permit issued by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management…  More »