Fuel Fix

NRG Energy on Thursday completed a transformation at the Houston Zoo that will use the sun’s rays to fuel 30 park vehicles. (Cody Duty/Houston Chronicle)

NRG pushes solar to keep Zoo moving

All 30 electric vehicles the Houston zoo uses to haul food, supplies and even animals now get their power from sunlight.  More »
Airboats spur birds to fly among marsh at the Big Branch National Wildlife Refuge. (Jennifer A. Dlouhy/Houston Chronicle)

‘Best restoration project in the entire world’ (video)

See the results of an environmental restoration effort on Gulf Coast, where once barren land is now covered with grass and wildlife. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar visited the area Wednesday, saying he hopes it will become the “best restoration project in the entire world.”  More »
An oil pump works near Stanley, N.D. (AP file photo/James MacPherson)

U.S. oil production to surpass imports in 2013

The number of barrels pumped in the United States is expected to exceed the nation’s net oil imports, for the first time since 1995, according to federal projections.  More »
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Interior Secretary Sally Jewell speaks during a Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing in March.  (Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg)

Energy committee advances Interior secretary nominee — with strings attached

The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee voted in favor of President Barack Obama’s nomination of Sally Jewell to be Interior secretary on Thursday. But even supportive senators listed a series of concerns with the business executive.  More »
Sapphire Energy's algae farm in Columbus, N.M.(Sapphire Energy)

Tesoro to buy ‘green’ crude oil

San Antonio-based refiner Tesoro Corp. has agreed to purchase algae-derived “green” crude oil that will be made into diesel fuel at its West Coast refineries.  More »
Oil wells in the Midway-Sunset oil field in Fellows, Calif. (Jim Wilson/The New York Times)

California bills could delay fracking

Fracking for oil and natural gas in California could slam to a halt, at least temporarily, under legislation circulating in Sacramento.  More »
Baker Hughes employees work at a drill site. (Houston Chronicle)

Honghua seeks China shale gas asset, expansion with Baker Hughes

Honghua Group Ltd. (196), China’s biggest oil-drilling equipment exporter, is seeking to expand exploration services with U.S. partner Baker Hughes Inc. (BHI) and acquire a shale gas asset in China, Chairman Zhang Mi said.  More »
A oil transit pipeline runs across the tundra on Alaska's North Slope. (AP Photo/Al Grillo, File)

Senate passes overhaul of oil tax structure

A divided state Senate late Wednesday passed an overhaul of Alaska’s oil tax structure, amid fears it will blow a hole in the state budget and give too much to oil companies with no guarantees.  More »

Pennsylvania judge orders records opened in fracking case

A Pennsylvania judge, handing a victory to local media and health groups, ordered documents unsealed in a settlement between gas-drillers and homeowners who accused the companies of contaminating their water.  More »
(Image: Flickr/pawpaw67)

Tribe: Nevada coal plant falsified pollution data

Representatives of an Indian tribe fighting to force the closure of a coal-fired power plant outside Las Vegas said Wednesday they uncovered evidence that from 2006 to 2011, the state’s dominant electric utility submitted “phony” reports to the state about pollution levels near the plant, and avoided any penalty when the problem was discovered.  More »
Workers move a section of well casing into place at a Chesapeake Energy natural gas well site near Burlington, Pa. (AP Photo/Ralph Wilson, File)

NY appeals court to consider local fracking bans

A state appeals court was to hear two cases that pit the right of towns to control land use through zoning against the drilling industry and landowners who say state law trumps local authority when it comes to oil and gas development in New York.  More »
(Bill Montgomery/Houston Chronicle)

State House OKs electric market cost-benefit measure

A measure requiring cost-benefit analysis of regulatory moves affecting the state power market is part of legislation reauthorizing the state Public Utility Commission  More »