EnergyWatch

News from the Houston Chronicle energy team
Exxon Mobil Corporation has filed permits to increase activity at their Beaumont refinery. The company reportedly plans an expansion that will the make the facility the largest in the United States. (Jake Daniels/The Enterprise)

Exxon may be expanding its Beaumont refinery

Reuters reported in July that Exxon was considering a third crude distillation unit at the Beaumont refinery, potentially doubling its current 344,600-barrel per day capacity with a multi-billion dollar project.  More »
Smoke rises from railway cars that were carrying crude oil after derailing in downtown Lac Megantic, Quebec, Canada. The fiery explosion killed at least 47 people in Canada in July 2013. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Paul Chiasson, File)

Quebec oil train disaster settlement for victims’ families

Chicago-based law firm Meyers & Flowers says it will be closely reviewing the settlement to determine whether the defendants are paying sufficient funds.  More »
(oilfieldservicesgrandeprairie.com)

Oil layoffs slowed in March, but firms still say 12,800 jobs will get axed

So far, Texas is outpacing every other state in planned layoffs, with 47,000 job cuts this year.  More »
(Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Commentary: Excess across the Energy Complex

FuelFix Voices contributor Matt Smith looks at “six slices of excess” in the energy landscape.  More »
(AFP/Getty Images)

Petrobras pension fund losses said to reach $1.9 billion

Founded in 1970, Petros is Brazil’s second biggest pension fund with more than 72 billion reais under management in 2013.  More »
(Dmitry Beliakov/Bloomberg News)

A pipeline developer is suing 103 West Virginia property owners to get access to their lands

Mountain Valley Pipeline LLC’s lawsuit seeks access to the properties to conduct a survey for a possible pipeline route.  More »
Screen grab from a video released by Diario Campeche Hoy of the Abkatun A-Permanente platform  on the Gulf of Mexico's Campeche Sound on fire on April 1, 2015.  An explosion and a fire erupted on an offshore oil platform operated by Mexico's Pemex on Wednesday, killing at least four workers, injuring 16 and forcing 300 to be evacuated. (AFP photo/Diario Campeche Hoy)

Mexico says oil spill avoided after deadly offshore blaze

At least four workers died and two suffered life-threatening injuries in an explosion that engulfed the platform in flames Wednesday, forcing 300 people to abandon the facility.  More »
A driver refuels her car at a gas station of PetroChina, a subsidiary of CNPC (China National Petroleum Corporation), in Luoyang city, central China's Henan province, 19 August 2014. (File, Bloomberg)

China’s fuel demand to peak sooner than oil giants expect

Sinopec has offered a view of the country that should serve as a reality check to any oil bull.  More »
A fireball goes up at the site of an oil train derailment in Casselton, N.D. (AP Photo/Bruce Crummy, File)

Engineer of oil tanker train sues BNSF for Casselton crash

The accident about 30 miles west of Fargo happened when a train carrying soybeans derailed in front of a BNSF oil train, causing that train to also derail and set off a fire that could be seen from nearly 10 miles away.  More »
A man works on the construction of a Petrobras offshore platform at the BrasFels shipyard in Angra dos Reis, Brazil, Wednesday Sept. 22, 2010. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

Petrobras signs $3.5 billion accord with China Development Bank

Petrobras is slashing investments, selling assets and seeking alternative financing options as it grapples with ways to book corruption losses in its financial statements.  More »
Photographer: Daniel Acker/Bloomberg

Reckoning arrives for cash-strapped oil firms amid bank squeeze

April is a crucial month for the industry because it’s when lenders are due to recalculate the value of properties that energy companies staked as loan collateral.  More »
(AP Photo/Brennan Linsley)

Samson Resources says it may seek bankruptcy protection

Oklahoma oil producer Samson Resources says it doesn’t expect to be able to repay its debt with income from battered oil fields and it may have to file for chapter 11 bankruptcy protection or face liquidation.  More »
(AFP/Getty Images)

Construction company embroiled in Petrobras scandal files for bankruptcy

Brazil’s biggest builders have been struggling to make payments to creditors as they defend themselves from allegations that they bribed the oil company for contracts.  More »
(David Paul Morris/Bloomberg)

Mayors from Vancouver and other Canadian cities are trying to halt a Kinder Morgan pipeline

The mayors of seven towns in British Columbia want the proposed Trans Mountain pipeline expansion put on hold.  More »
(Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images)

Another state joins the fight against the White House’s new fracking rules

The Obama administration is requiring companies that drill on federal lands to disclose chemicals used in hydraulic fracturing.  More »