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More college grads want to work for energy firms

Energy companies are becoming more popular among college students, the latest in an annual survey shows.  More »

Venezuela officially joins Mercosur trade bloc

Venezuela was officially welcomed into the Mercosur trade bloc Tuesday, giving that nation’s leader Hugo Chavez a long-awaited political prize and strengthening links among the region’s agricultural and energy powerhouses.  More »
(San Antonio Express-News)

Valero may split off retail operations

Valero Energy may split its retail business from the rest of the company. It is reviewing several ways to separate its retail operations, including a distribution to shareholders, the company said.  More »
A liquefied natural gas tanker arrives in Houston in 2008, shortly after the Freeport LNG terminal began operations. (Steve Campbell / Houston Chronicle)

Freeport LNG inks deal to sell natural gas to Japanese utilities

Two of Japan’s largest utilities have signed a deal to buy liquefied natural gas from a Freeport, Texas plant over the next two decades. The move allows Freeport LNG to take advantage of Japan’s thirst for natural gas and gives U.S. producers another potential avenue for exporting the fossil fuel to Asian markets.  More »
(Photo: Houston Chronicle file)

Wait-and-see mode for Texas electric consumers

The much-discussed wholesale electricity price hike starts tomorrow, leaving some to ponder whether electricity providers will pass on the higher costs to consumers.  More »
Total headquarters outside Paris. (AP file photo/Jacques Brinon)

Total to hunt for oil in Iraq’s Kurdish north

French oil giant Total S.A. said Tuesday it has acquired an interest in two oil exploration areas in Iraq’s Kurdish north from Marathon Oil Corp., joining U.S. oil majors Exxon Mobil Corp. and Chevron Corp. in the self-rule region.  More »
(Associated Press)

Power provider loses appeal of EPA oversight

The largest power generator in Texas lost an appellate court challenge Monday over federal supervision of state clean-air regulations.  More »
The Cushing, Okla., pipeline hub.

Enbridge near 30-year high on earnings growth

Enbridge Inc. (ENB), the largest transporter of Canadian crude to the U.S., is trading at its highest level in almost three decades as it shakes off criticism over oil spills, delays in new crude routes and valuation concerns.  More »
Beach-goers walk on the sand near the San Onofre nuclear power plant in San Clemente , Calif.  (AP Photo, Lenny Ignelzi, File)

Ailing nuke plant may restart by 2013

The operator of California’s troubled San Onofre nuclear power plant told state regulators the damaged reactors may restart by the end of the year, according to documents obtained Monday by The Associated Press.  More »
(AP file photo)

Forget polar bears, worry about keeping the lights on

Maggie Koerth-Baker, science editor at BoingBoing.net, says she was motivated to write her latest book, “Before the Lights Go Out,” after listening to her husband, an energy efficiency analyst, come home and talk shop.  More »
Solar panels are seen on the roof of a Wal-Mart Supercenter in Baldwin Park, Calif. Wal-Mart, with 4,522 stores in the U.S., expects to have 1,000 solar-powered locations by 2020. Reed Saxon/AP Photo

Wal-Mart Beats Apple, Ikea In U.S. Solar Installations

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (WMT), the world’s largest retailer, has installed more than 150 U.S. solar projects and expects to have as much as 90 megawatts of capacity by year-end, more than Ikea Group and Apple Inc.  More »
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Cnooc said to seek $5 billion of offshore debt for Nexen buy

Cnooc Ltd. (883) is seeking about $5 billion in offshore financing from foreign banks to back its acquisition of Canada’s Nexen Inc. (NXY), according to two people familiar with the matter.  More »