Fuel Fix

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UK gives BP go-ahead on Shetlands drilling

The British government on Thursday gave oil company BP PLC the go-ahead to drill a new deep-water well in Scottish waters off the northwest coast of the Shetland Islands, rankling environmentalists.  More »
President Barack Obama speaks at Copper Mountain Solar 1 Facility in Boulder City, Nev. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

Obama touts faster southern Keystone; GOP calls it a political ploy

President Obama on Thursday unveiled a new process for speeding up the approval of infrastructure projects, especially the construction of the Keystone XL pipeline’s southern leg. But Republicans dismissed Obama’s trip to Cushing as a political ploy meant to take credit for the only part of the pipeline he has no control over.  More »
Demonstrators march with a replica of a pipeline during a protest against the Keystone XL Pipeline outside the White House on Sunday, Nov. 6, 2011, in Washington.  (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Survey says: Most Americans back Keystone XL

A majority of Americans want the U.S. government to approve the Keystone XL pipeline, according to a new nationwide survey. The poll results come as President Barack Obama heads to Cushing, Okla., to tout plans to fast-track the southern leg of the controversial project.  More »

Michael Reed fills his gas tank at a station in Charlotte, N.C. (AP Photo/Chuck Burton)

Gas prices near record price in Houston

Gasoline prices are fast approaching the record high price in Houston.  More »
The Valero Three Rivers Refinery in Three Rivers, Texas between San Antonio and Corpus Christi refines a lot of oil from the Eagle Ford shale. (Photo: John Davenport, San Antonio Express-News)

Valero says EPA rules a threat

Stringent environmental regulations that might get even tougher could prevent San Antonio’s homegrown Valero Energy Corp. from expanding in this country, one of its top executives said Wednesday.  More »
Jose Almaguer waits for his van to fill up with up with gas at Kroger on north Sherpherd Drive. He said it costs more than $100 to fill up due to the higher gas prices. (Photo: Cody Duty, Houston Chronicle)

Unhappy public not sure who to blame for high gas

Families canceling vacations. Fishermen watching their profits burn up along with their boats’ gasoline. Drivers buying only a few gallons of gas at a time because they can’t afford to fill the tank.  More »
The Cushing, Okla., pipeline hub.

Obama’s speedy Keystone review won’t accelerate Cushing pipeline

President Barack Obama’s promise to expedite review of the southern leg of TransCanada Corp. (TRP)’s Keystone XL pipeline won’t speed up the timeline for the project, which already is slated to start construction as soon as June.  More »
Pegasus, the winged red horse icon of Exxon-Mobil, is seen on a gas pump in Ferndale, Mich. (Photo: Carlos Osorio, Associated Press)

Exxon says ‘significant progress’ made to end Alaska gas dispute

Exxon Mobil Corp. has made “significant progress” toward resolving an Alaska natural-gas dispute, and more work remains to reach a settlement, David Eglinton, a company spokesman, said in an e-mail.  More »
This image taken Nov. 17, 2011, and released by Chevron, shows an aerial view of vessels in the cleanup of an oil spill in an offshore field operated by Chevron at the Bacia de Campos, in Rio de Janeiro state, Brazil.  (AP Photo/Ibama)

Transocean spared in Chevron spill probe by Brazil regulator

Transocean Ltd. (RIG), the rig operator at Chevron Corp.’s (CVX) $3.6 billion Frade project in Brazil, was spared by the country’s oil regulator in an investigation of a 3,000-barrel oil spill in November.  More »
President Barack Obama speaks at Copper Mountain Solar 1 Facility in Boulder City, Nev. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

Obama, GOP vie for upper hand on energy

Wooing a nation of increasingly angry motorists, President Barack Obama and his Republican rivals are all plunging into gas-pump politics, seeking the upper hand as energy becomes a driving issue in the election campaign.  More »
(Photo: Julien Tromeur, Flickr)

Oil falls below $107 amid China growth concerns

Oil prices fell below $107 a barrel Thursday in Asia after weak manufacturing data suggested China’s economy, and demand for crude, could grow less than expected this year.  More »
Alejander Ruiz, of AT&T, fills up his vehicle with Clean Energy Fuel at 7721 Washington in Houston. (Thomas B. Shea/Houston Chronicle)

Natural gas sub for vehicles will likely stay a dream for now

Vast supplies of domestic natural gas, unlocked by advances in drilling technology, have pushed down prices for the resource to their lowest levels in 10 years, providing a boost to those who argue for its use as a substitute for gasoline in consumer vehicles.  More »
President Barack Obama (AP file)

Obama seeks to speed up southern Keystone XL’s construction

President Obama will say Thursday he is directing agencies to do what they can to speed up approval of any federal permits needed to construct the southern leg of the Keystone XL oil pipeline from Cushing, Okla., to the Gulf Coast.  More »
This underwater image taken and released by Brazil's Environment and Natural Resources Institute, IBAMA, shows an oil spill in an offshore field operated by Chevron oil company at the Bacia de Campos, in Rio de Janeiro state, Brazil, Nov. 11, 2011. More than 2,600 barrels of oil may have spilled into the Atlantic ocean because of a leak at an offshore Chevron drilling site, IBAMA officials said Friday. (AP Photo/Ibama)

Charges filed against Chevron in Brazil

Federal prosecutors filed criminal charges against 17 oil company executives on Wednesday for an oil leak in the Atlantic, legal action that has prompted debate about whether it could slow Brazil’s effort to develop its massive offshore finds.  More »
Sunoco's Philadelphia refinery is on the banks of the Schuylkill River. The company plans to pull out of the refining business altogether, which could help put the Northeast region in a precarious position. Photo: MIKE MERGEN / HC

Financial woes fuel busy year for refining deals

The value of mergers, acquisitions and other deals involving refining assets surged 50 percent to $6 billion in 2011, fueled by industry’s financial troubles, according to an IHS Herold report.  More »