Houston Chronicle Energy News

Reporting from the daily edition.
Hundreds of cranes and vessels are at a standstill at Port Fourchon Friday Dec. 3, 2010, in Golden Meadow, La. The typically bustling port has slowed since the moratorium of drilling in the Gulf of Mexico. (AP Photo/Kerry Maloney)

Small producer pleads with Washington for deep-water permit

When federal officials lifted the ban on deep-water drilling in early October, Houston-based ATP Oil & Gas was ready to roll. More than 70 days later, the company is still waiting, despite lobbying hard for attention from Capitol Hill. (AP Photo/Kerry Maloney)  More »

Oil falls from 2-year high as China raises interest rates

 Crude oil fell from a two-year high in New York as China’s second interest-rate increase since October bolstered concern that economic growth will slow in the biggest energy-consuming country. Futures snapped five days of gains after the People’s…  More »
The bottom of the blowout preventer stack pulled from the site of BP's Macondo well. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

More warning gadgets wanted on offshore equipment

From Energy Secretary Steven Chu to the presidential oil spill commission, there is a growing consensus that drilling equipment must be improved by adding more gadgets and gauges to send warning signals when things go wrong. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert,File)  More »
Helge Lund

Norway’s Statoil kicks up its profile a notch

In the decade since it arrived in North America, Norwegian oil giant Statoil has kept a fairly low profile, but that may be changing. StatoilHydro CEO Helge Lund talks to the Chronicle about the moves.(AP Photo/Tom Hevezi)  More »

Rig’s crew called unprepared for Gulf oil disaster

The worst of the explosions gutted the Deepwater Horizon stem to stern.Crew members were cut down by shrapnel, hurled across rooms and buried under smoking wreckage. Some were swallowed by fireballs that raced through the oil rig’s shatter…  More »

Some in OPEC comfortable with $100 oil

CAIRO, Egypt — Oil importers are growing wary of the impact of prices near two-year highs as some OPEC members foresee a further rally to the $100-a-barrel level and Arab oil ministers gather for a meeting in Cairo. Japan’s economy minister said Frid…  More »

Iraqi oil minister says OPEC might meet before June

 The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries may meet before its next regularly scheduled gathering in June, Iraqi Oil Minister Abdul Kareem al-Luaibi said today. He also said he is “happy” with the current price of oil and that Iraq’s o…  More »

Exxon Mobil has Petrohawk deal

Exxon Mobil Corp. has agreed to pay $650 million for Petrohawk Energy Corp.’s natural gas wells and pipelines in the Fayetteville Shale, its second shale purchase this year. The sale of the wells, valued at $575 million, is complete and has an Oct. 1 e…  More »

Letter adds to oil spill dispute over conflicts of interest

A federal agency investigating the Deepwater Horizon disaster said Thursday that conflicts of interest are compromising the integrity of a test of key safety equipment. The chairman of the Chemical Safety Board, Rafael Moure-Eraso, complained that firm…  More »
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EPA takes over Texas pollution permits

The U.S. EPA’s move today taking away from state regulators the permitting process for air quality on major industrial facilities was praised by environmentalists and criticized by industry and Gov. Rick Perry’s office.  More »

Average national gas pump price rises above $3

NEW YORK — The national average for a gallon of regular gasoline topped $3 today. It’s the first time that the average retail price has been above $3 a gallon at Christmas. The average pump price rose about a cent and a half a gallon overnight, to $3…  More »

National gas prices go over $3 a gallon

• Check the Houston prices (still under $3) • • • NEW YORK — The national average for a gallon of regular gasoline topped $3 a gallon on Thursday, just in time for the holiday driving trips millions of Americans will take this week. T…  More »