EnergyWatch

News from the Houston Chronicle energy team
(Photo: David Paul Ohmer/Flickr)

FuelFix Newslinks |10.14.11|

Kiddie pools and flare guns at La. refinery. Does $45 million matter to BP? Too soon for oil apocalypse.  More »
China has been seen as a prime export market for U.S. coal. (AP photo)

Next on Republicans’ list: EPA’s proposed coal-ash rule

The House will likely approve a bill Friday to block the Environmental Protection Agency from issuing its first-ever regulations restricting how utilities can dispose of coal ash.  More »
This plastic childrens pool was used to catch leaks at Pelican Refining's Lake Charles, La. refinery. The Houston-based company pled guilty to a number of violations of U.S. environmental laws and to obstructing justice during the EPA's investigation. (Photo: EPA)

Houston refiner pleads guilty to environmental crimes *update*

A kiddie pool, a flare gun from Walmart and bypassed emissions controls were all part of normal operations at a Lake Charles, La. refinery owned by Houston-based Pelican Refining, according to the EPA. The company has agreed to pay a $12 million fine for environmental regulations and lying to investigators.  More »
(Photo: Anadarko)

Anadarko ponders office expansion

Exxon Mobil might not be the only big energy company planning to expand north of Houston.  More »
A cyber security analyst works in the "watch and warning center" during the first tour of the government’s secretive cyber defense lab in Idaho Falls, Idaho. The Homeland Security Department's Control System Security Program facilities are intended to protect the nation's power grid, water and communications systems. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)   Summary

Cybercrime becomes bigger threat to energy industry than terrorists

In the past energy industry security was all about terrorist threats to facilities and overseas kidnappings. These days cyber espionage is the bigger problem.  More »
(Photo: David Paul Ohmer/Flickr)

FuelFix Newslinks |10.13.11|

Spill fines begin. Fear of hackers, not jihadists, tops for energy security. Support for EPA rules.  More »
(Image: Flickr/Double--M)

Transocean accused of not honoring spill subpoenas

Transocean must comply with subpoenas issued by the Chemical Safety Board in its investigation of the Deepwater Horizon accident, the Justice Department says in a Houston lawsuit.  More »
In efforts to protect power lines, area crews are cutting down trees that have become hazardous due to drought. Salvatore Rangel cuts down a tree on Gladys Tuesday. Guiseppe Barranco/The Enterprise

CenterPoint: report dead trees near power lines

CenterPoint Energy is asking residents to report dead or drought-stricken trees near power lines to ensure electricity service won’t be interrupted, the company said this morning.  More »
Williams Tower in Houston's Galleria area is named after the pipeline giant. (Photo: Hines)

Williams’ last-minute bid for SUG assets fell through

After apparently losing a bidding war for Houston-based Southern Union Co., pipeline giant Williams Co. made a last-minute bid for a handful of SUG assets. That deal has fallen through.  More »
Homeowner Doug Shoemaker demonstrates the Reliant e-Sense App to home improvement expert Bob Vila, while on a tour in his home in the 6th ward, Tuesday, Oct. 11, 2011, where Reliant Energy outfitted twelve families with smart meters and accessories, on a street called "Innovation Avenue." (Karen Warren / Houston Chronicle)

Houston neighborhood turned into smart meter laboratory

Reliant Energy has equipped 12 homes in the 6th Ward just West of Downtown Houston with a wide range of smart meter-enabled devices.  More »
(Photo: David Paul Ohmer/Flickr)

FuelFix Newslinks |10.12.11|

Neighborhood turned electric lab. Judge denies Halliburton fraud claim. Williams’ last-second SUG bid.  More »
(AP file photo/Paul Sakuma)

GE invests in Summit Midstream expansion

GE Energy Financial Services has put $145 milliion behind midstream pipeline and processing firm Summit.  More »