Fuel Fix

(Buster Dean/Houston Chronicle)

Congress set to renew drilling permit program

A program accelerating government processing of drilling permits on federal land could get new life if Congress passes a sweeping defense authorization bill next week.  More »
Rex Tillerson, chairman, president, and CEO of ExxonMobil Corp. ( Johnny Hanson / Houston Chronicle )

CEO says Exxon Mobil can be “successful” with $40 oil

West Texas Intermediate climbed Wednesday to $67.98 per barrel, while futures sank to $63/72, the lowest price in five years.  More »
(AP Photo/Matthew Brown)

Sub-$50 oil surfaces in North Dakota as regional discounts swell

Crude sold at the wellhead in the Bakken shale region in North Dakota fell to $49.69 a barrel on Nov. 28.  More »

(AP Photo/Steve Helber)

AAA: Expect gas prices to fall at least 15 cents over holidays

Gas prices are dropping to levels not seen in almost five years.  More »
The United Kalavryta, shown here in the Gulf in late July, remains anchored about 60 miles off Galveston's coast. (Courtesy: U.S. Coast Guard)

Tanker’s fate unresolved after historic deal

Lawyers representing Baghdad and Erbil met for 20 minutes behind closed doors with a U.S. federal judge on Wednesday to discuss the case involving a tanker carrying Kurdish crude that has been trapped in legal limbo since late July but no action was taken.  More »
(Johnny Hanson / Chronicle)

Nature article questions natural gas optimism

The report highlights conflicting estimates about the long-term viability of increasing natural gas production, and warns that acting on the assumption natural gas will always be cheap may not be ideal.  More »
The West Texas sky silhouettes a Linn Energy pumpjack in the Permian basin. (Linn Energy)

Production up, but methane emissions down in Permian Basin

Even though energy companies are pulling more oil out of the Permian Basin, methane emissions have been declining in the West Texas drilling hotbed.  More »
(AP Photo/Gerald Herbert, File)

Ex-BP executive fighting Gulf oil spill charges

Among the defense arguments are: one count is unconstitutionally vague; the congressional subcommittee investigation that Rainey is accused of obstructing had not been properly authorized; and one of the charges takes Rainey’s statements about the flow rate from the well out of context.  More »
Gas drilling sites in Arkansas for Southwestern Energy.
Southwestern Energy drilling pipe and a drilling rig stand ready in Arkansas' Fayetteville Shale Play, where a productive year helped boost Houston-based Southwestern to the No. 1 spot on the Chronicle 100.  (Southwestern Energy)

Southwestern Energy to pay $300M for gas-rich land in Pennsylvania

Southwestern Energy Co. is planning to pay $300 million for thousands of acres in a natural gas-rich region of Pennsylvania, little more than six weeks after its multibillion-dollar purchase of gas land nearby.  More »
AFP PHOTO / Karen Bleier

Brent rebounds from $70 as oil rout stutters

Crude is in a bear market as the U.S. pumps the most oil in more than three decades while global demand slows.  More »
Vladimir Putin, Russia's president. (Andrey Rudakov/Bloomberg)

Cheap oil is hitting these countries the hardest

The pain being felt in OPEC countries is likely being taken as good news in U.S. foreign policy circles.  More »
(Eddie Seal/Bloomberg)

Battlecat snags $220 million in equity for South Texas drilling

The company has leases in the Eagle Ford Shale and will focus development there and in other shale plays in South Texas.  More »
Bidirectional flows

Northeast gas pipelines turn two-way as region becomes major producer

Pipelines companies have planned modifications that will allow 8.3 billion cubic feet of gas per day to leave the Northeast via bidirectional flows.  More »
(AP Photo/Matthew Brown, File)

Green groups sue DOT over oil-by-rail regulations

The groups want the Transportation Department to block refiners and other shippers from using older, rupture-prone tank cars to move crude from the Bakken formation in North Dakota.  More »
(AP file photo/Hadi Mizban)

Oil rally fizzles as Kurds reach deal on exports with Iraq

The deal allows the shipment of 300,000 barrels a day of Iraqi Kirkuk blend to Turkey’s Mediterranean port of Ceyhan along a pipeline operated by the Kurds.  More »
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