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Sally Jewell

With the Olympic Mountains in the background, the Polar Pioneer drilling rig arrives in Port Angeles, Wash., aboard a heavy-lift transport ship in April. Shell Oil Co. hopes to use the rig for exploratory drilling during the summer open-water season in the Chukchi Sea off Alaska's northwest coast, if it can get the permits. (Daniella Beccaria/seattlepi.com via AP, File)

Obama administration gives thumbs up to Shell’s Arctic drilling plans

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Shell moved one step closer to resuming its $6 billion quest for crude in the Arctic on Monday, with the Obama administration’s approval of its broad plan for exploratory oil drilling in the Chukchi Sea north of Alaska.
Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, speaks during the opening panel discussion of IHS Energy CERAWEEK on Monday, April 20, 2015, in Houston. ( Brett Coomer / Houston Chronicle )

Quotable CERAWeek: Memorable lines from energy industry leaders

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The new reality of oil, was the biggest topic, and the executives who took the stage focused on detailing how their companies would survive.
Interior Secretary Sally Jewell at the 2015 IHS CERAWeek (Houston Chronicle)

CERAWeek: Interior Secretary Jewell aims to reassure wary oil executives

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Interior Secretary Sally Jewell will go before a crowd of wary energy industry executives Monday to make the case that federal regulations are essential to reassure a worried public.
In June, GE tested this prototype 20,000 psi ram blowout preventer at its Houston Technology Center. The 20ksi program also includes new wellheads, connectors, control systems, and riser systems. (GE Oil & Gas)

Feds unveil plan for keeping offshore oil wells in check five years after Gulf spill

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The measure codifies many of the steps that companies have already taken to better keep offshore wells in check, including more rigorous maintenance and testing of the blowout preventers that act as a last line of defense against uncontrolled surges of oil and gas.
The Polar Pioneer, a drilling rig contracted by Shell for Chukchi Sea exploration in 2015, is transported across the Pacific on the heavy-lift vessel Blue Marlin. (Photo: Vincenzo Floramo / Greenpeace)

Feds launch review of Shell’s Arctic drilling plan

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Federal regulators have begun a 30-day review of a broad plan that forms a framework for Shell to resume Arctic drilling this summer. The company also must obtain permits for each proposed well.
The Polar Pioneer, a drilling rig contracted by Shell for Chukchi Sea exploration in 2015, is transported across the Pacific on the heavy-lift vessel Blue Marlin. (Photo: Vincenzo Floramo / Greenpeace)

Shell’s Arctic drilling plans on track as Obama administration OKs lease sale

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The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management says there’s more than four times as much oil in the Arctic’s Chukchi Sea as it previously estimated.
(Eddie Seal/Bloomberg)

Oil industry to Obama: Stop excluding Atlantic drilling leases

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Oil industry leaders on Monday pressed the Obama administration to reverse course and schedule two auctions of drilling rights in the Atlantic, not just the single sale now penciled in for 2021.
The Polar Pioneer, a drilling rig contracted by Shell for Chukchi Sea exploration in 2015, is transported across the Pacific on the heavy-lift vessel Blue Marlin. (Photo: Vincenzo Floramo / Greenpeace)

As Obama administration weighs Arctic drilling, Shell moves rigs to region

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Shell is moving its drilling rigs to the Pacific Northwest, ahead of critical government decisions on the company’s Arctic exploration plans.
Workers adjust piping during a natural gas hydraulic fracturing  operation at an Encana Oil & Gas Inc. drilling site in western Colorado. (Brennan Linsley/AP)

New federal mandates target hydraulic fracturing

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Although the rule only applies to development on public and tribal lands — where there are more than 100,000 oil and gas wells today — environmentalists have argued that tough federal protections could provide inspiration for state regulators.
A jar holding waste water from hydraulic fracturing is held up to the light at a recycling site in Midland, Texas. (AP Photo/Pat Sullivan)

Feds to impose hydraulic fracturing mandates

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The Bureau of Land Management regulation set to be issued Friday has drawn fire from industry leaders who insist well-tailored state rules are better than one-size-fits-all federal mandates.