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This July 8, 2013 file photo provided by Surete du Quebec, shows debris from a runaway train in Lac-Megantic, Quebec, Canada. (AP Photo/Surete du Quebec, The Canadian Press,File)

$338 million fund in deadly oil train derailment close to approval

Barring any surprises, the timeline would allow payments to be made to victims of the disaster by year’s end, said Robert Keach, the bankruptcy trustee. About $83 million is being set aside to settle wrongful death claims.
In this March 25, 2014 photo, a worker oils a pump during a hydraulic fracturing operation at an Encana Corp. well pad near Mead, Colo. The first experimental use of hydraulic fracturing was in 1947, and more than 1 million U.S. oil and oil wells have been fracked since, according to the American Petroleum Institute. The National Petroleum Council estimates that up to 80 percent of natural oil wells drilled in the next decade will require hydraulic fracturing. (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley)

Encana to sell Colorado fields for $900 million

The Canadian oil company drills for hydrocarbons primarily in Texas and Alberta shale formations. In Colorado, it produces a daily haul of 14,800 barrels of oil and 52 million cubic feet of natural gas on the 51,000 net acres it plans to sell.
(Daniel Acker/Bloomberg)

Keystone XL developer seeks different approval for route

Former Gov. Dave Heineman approved the Nebraska route in 2013 under a state law that allowed TransCanada to use eminent domain against holdout landowners, but opponents sued and the project has been mired in state courts ever since.
Jeb Bush, former governor of Florida and 2016 Republican presidential candidate, speaks to attendees at the Iowa State Fair Soapbox in Des Moines, Iowa, U.S., on Friday, Aug. 14, 2015. Sampling a fried Snickers bar and sidestepping a few hecklers, Bush made his way through the Iowa State Fair on Friday as he tried, and at times showed signs of struggling, to present himself as a fresh voice in the Republican presidential field. Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg *** Local Caption *** Jeb Bush

Jeb Bush wades into oil export debate, calls for ending ban

The former Florida governor is calling for ending the 1970s-era law prohibiting the U.S. from exporting crude oil at a time when domestic petroleum production has grown rapidly over the past decade.
Jed Hamilton and Kevin Harun take part in the University of Houston 2015-2016 Energy Symposium.  (Craig H. Hartley/For the Chronicle)

Exxon Mobil official promotes Arctic exploration

“If the U.S. stands in the background, Russia will move forward, and things won’t be as good as they could be if the U.S. had a seat at the table in the Arctic,” said Jed Hamilton, senior Arctic consultant at Exxon Mobil Upstream Research Company.
In this July 6, 2013, photo, smoke rises from railway cars from now defunct Montreal, Maine & Atlantic Railways company that were carrying crude oil after derailing in downtown Lac Megantic, Quebec, Canada. (Paul Chiasson/The Canadian Press via AP)

Judge poised to sign off on oil train disaster settlement

A $338 million settlement fund for victims of a fiery train derailment that claimed 47 lives in Canada is poised for final approval, but payments could be held up by a legal challenge from one of that country’s largest railways
(David Paul Morris/Bloomberg)

Canadian court rules villagers in Ecuador can pursue class action lawsuit against Chevron

The Supreme Court of Canada said in a unanimous decision that the company can be pursued in the country for its alleged actions in Ecuador, in a case that’s spanned more than two decades.
Categories: Legal issues
Oil wells in the Franja del Orinoco region of Venezuela (Houston Chronicle)

Crash could cost cities in U.S. and Canada cities $170 billion

The losses, which represent about 2 percent of combined GDP for the 35 cities studied, surpassed estimates for the impact of natural disasters such as floods and earthquakes as well as terrorist attacks, the London-based insurance market said Thursday in a report.

ConocoPhillips starts up deep oil sands project in Canada

ConocoPhillips says it’s bringing up its first barrels of oil in a large Canadian oil sands project that has been under construction for five years.
Workers move a section of well casing into place at a Chesapeake Energy natural gas well site. (AP file photo/Ralph Wilson)

Canada’s Penn West to cut workforce 35 percent, slash spending

The firm’s board of directors will also take a cut in compensation, as its board chair’s annual retainer will be cut in half and other directors will have retainers reduced by 40 percent.