Fuel Fix


OPEC pledge means record tanker cargoes reversing rout

OPEC’s pledge to maintain production quotas will sustain a record supply of oil cargoes in the Persian Gulf, giving ship owners the confidence to demand more money after charter rates plunged 76 percent in 11 weeks.  More »
A worker walks through pipes connecting storage tanks and pumps in the hydraulic fracturing process. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic, File)

Republicans press White House to explain natural gas task force

Congressional Republicans are pressing the Obama administration to say whether a new interagency task force focused on natural gas drilling will push new federal regulations on top of existing state mandates.  More »
Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett . (AP Photo/John Heller)

Pa. refinery tax credit to get lawmakers’ scrutiny

Gov. Tom Corbett’s proposed tax break of up to $1.7 billion to lure an integrated petrochemical industry to Pennsylvania will get scrutiny in the coming days by state lawmakers eager to ensure that taxpayers get a return on their money and question whether that amount of money is really necessary.  More »
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(AP file photo/Alastair Grant)

Pipe failure caused Feb. fire at Wash. BP refinery

BP says the Feb. 17 fire that shut down its Cherry Point oil refinery in Washington state near Ferndale was caused by a pipe failure in the crude processing unit.  More »
Honda Fit EV. (Photo: Honda)

Honda to recycle rare earths to be green

Honda Motor Co. said Wednesday it will start recycling rare earths and other key materials in hybrid auto batteries this year — a key innovation in the Japanese automaker’s effort to be green.  More »

TNT’s ‘Dallas’ offers modern spin on energy debate

Dallas captivated audiences about a backstabbing family driven and fuel by the booming Texas oil business, but a modern take on the classic soap opera takes a more contemporary view on energy.  More »
A natural gas drilling site in the Barnett Shale. (AP file photo/Donna McWilliam)

Chesapeake to cut 70 North Texas jobs

Chesapeake Energy Corp. said Tuesday it will eliminate 70 jobs from its North Texas workforce as it cuts back on natural gas drilling operations there.  More »
Photo: Courtesy SolFocus

Solar power could have saved $520 million last summer, study says

If Texas used more solar energy last summer, electricity customers could have spent a total of 10 percent less on power, according to a hypothetical analysis released today.  More »
Photo: Timothy A. Clary/AFP/Getty Images

Gulf drilling auction expected to net high bids

Federal officials will unseal nearly 600 secret bids for offshore oil and gas leases on Wednesday, during the first auction of drilling rights in the central Gulf of Mexico since the Deepwater Horizon disaster. Pent-up demand for the acreage, big discoveries in the region recently and high oil prices earlier this year are all expected to contribute to a robust sale.  More »
An oil pump works in the Persian Gulf desert oil fields of Sakhir, Bahrain. (AP Photo/Hasan Jamali, File)

Report: U.S. oil reserves flourished in 2011

U.S. oil reserves grew 9 percent in 2011 as companies funneled billions into exploring for new deposits across the country, according to an Ernst & Young study.  More »
Ron Saville examines sleeping quarters. The structure from Lone-Star Marine Shelters will sleep 76 persons, who will have their own televisions. Photo: J. Patric Schneider / Houston Chronicle

Longer stays with rig workers could aid U.S. inspectors

Federal inspectors evaluating the safety of offshore drilling operations need longer visits on water-based rigs, including more time eating meals with workers, talking with the crew and sharing their sleeping quarters, according to a National Research Council report issued today.  More »
A garbage truck running on compressed natural gas makes its way along its route in The Woodlands. Driver Servando Rosales says a resident who listened for a deep diesel sound had to chase after him when she realized a quieter machine was on the route. Photo: Jerry Baker / HC

GE introduces technology to make carbon capture affordable

GE has announced a new partnership to combine its gas turbine technology with carbon capture equipment from Norwegian producers, Sargas, to create the one of the world’s first gas-fired plants with integrated carbon capture for enhanced oil recovery.  More »
(Photo: Mathijs B/Flickr)

Texas gas line checked after man hurt in explosion

A utility official says the FBI is investigating whether a Dallas-area gas line was tampered with before a man was hurt in an explosion.  More »

Swift announces Texas natural gas production deal

Swift Energy Company has announced deal with Eagle Ford Gathering LLC to process natural gas in South Texas.  More »
(AP Photo/Charles Krupa)

Perfect storm sinking coal-fired generation, report says

A perfect storm of lower natural gas prices, new emission rules and weak national demand for electricity is causing many utility companies to ditch coal-fired power generation, according to a new report.  More »