Fuel Fix

(AP Photo/Charles Krupa)

EPA rules threaten older power plants

More than 32 mostly coal-fired power plants in a dozen states will be forced to shut down and an additional 36 might have to close because of new federal air pollution regulations, according to an Associated Press survey.  More »
John Alvin color illustration of Uncle Sam reaching up for a chain cutter that could free him from the slave shackles restricting his leg to oil barrels.

Loren Steffy: The myths of untapped oil

As we head into the presidential election next year, Democrats and Republicans are offering voters deceptively simple solutions to America’s complicated energy conundrum.  More »
A contractor closes a valve on his tanker truck at a Range Resources hydraulic fracturing operation Pennsylvania. (Keith Srakocic/AP)

Drilling in 2012: Production up; fewer leases

Marcellus Shale natural gas production is expected to keep rising in 2012, yet landowners may find that signing lease deals isn’t as easy as in years past.  More »

(Photo: David Paul Ohmer/Flickr)

FuelFix Newslinks |12.19.11|

Loren Steffy talks about the myths of untapped oil. Drilling is up in 2012, but companies are getting fewer leases. Is the 100-Watt days numbered?  More »
North Korean leader Kim Jong Il, right, and South Korean President Kim Dae-jung raise their arms together before signing a joint declaration at the end of the second day of a three-day summit in Pyongyang. In a breakthrough at the historic summit, the two signed an agreement aimed at easing half a century of conflict on the heavily armed Korean Peninsula and working toward its eventual reunification. Kim Jong Il, North Korea's mercurial and enigmatic leader whose iron rule and nuclear ambitions dominated world security fears for more than a decade, has died.  His death was announced Monday, Dec. 19, 2011 by state television from the North Korean capital, Pyongyang. He was 69. (AP Photo/Yonhap, Pool, File)

Oil falls for fourth day on death of Kim Jong Il

Oil dropped for a fourth day in New York as the death of North Korean leader Kim Jong Il prompted investors to sell equities and commodities, while Europe was scheduled to discuss its latest step to control the debt crisis.  More »
An oil spill seen near the town of  Usinsk, 1500 km (930 miles) northeast of Moscow, Russia.  Komi is one of Russia's largest and oldest oil provinces but ruptures in aging pipelines and leaks from decommissioned oil wells make oil spills in the region routine. (AP Photo/Dmitry Lovetsky)

Russia oil spills wreak devastation

On the bright yellow tundra outside this oil town near the Arctic Circle, a pitch-black pool of crude stretches toward the horizon. The source: a decommissioned well whose rusty screws ooze with oil, viscous like jam.  More »
Speaker of the House John Boehner, R-Ohio, speaks to reporters at the Capitol in Washington. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

Senate OKs payroll tax cut with Keystone XL provision

Senators racing for the exits after a year of bitter battles passed legislation today that would extend a Social Security payroll tax cut and jobless benefits for just two months, setting the stage for the next fight until February.  More »
Protesters of the proposed Keystone XL oil pipeline at a rally in Washington, D.C. (Puneet Kollipara / the Houston Chronicle)

TransCanada CEO says pipeline debate may persist

The chief executive of a company trying to build a pipeline to carry oil through six states from Canada to Texas said the national debate over the plan has “gone off on tangents” that touch on larger issues of U.S. energy and environmental policies.  More »
Shell's contracted drillship Noble Discoverer (is shown) in Dutch Harbor, Alaska.

Feds approve Shell’s Chukchi Sea drilling plan – with strings attached

The federal government today gave Shell Oil Co. the green light to drill up to six exploratory wells in the Chukchi Sea near Alaska, but major hurdles still remain before the company can launch its Arctic drilling program when ice clears next summer.  More »
Broken Light Bulb

Groups say light bulb compromise is no bright idea

Consumer, environmental and manufacturing interests all criticized a measure that delays new light bulb efficiency standards as part of a compromise to avoid another government shutdown.  More »
Fire boat response crews battle the blazing remnants of the Deepwater Horizon rig in the Gulf of Mexico in April 2010.  (Photo: HO/AFP/Getty Images)

Transocean asks judge to force BP to indemnify for damages

Transocean Ltd. (RIG)’s drilling contract with BP Plc (BP/) promised indemnification for damages from oil spilled below the surface of the Gulf of Mexico and should be enforced for claims over the Deepwater Horizon accident, the rig owner told a judge.  More »
Ted Glick, policy director of the Chesapeake Climate Action Network, speaks against the proposed Keystone XL pipeline during a rally in Washington, D.C. in October. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

GOP leaders: Pipeline stays in payroll tax bill

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell won’t back a compromise payroll tax cut extension unless the bill includes language aimed at forcing construction of a Canada-to-Texas pipeline, his spokesman said Friday, as top congressional Republicans insisted on the controversial provision.  More »
Demonstrators march with a replica of a pipeline during a protest of Keystone XL at the White House on Sunday, Nov. 6.  (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

General makes national security case for Keystone XL

As House Republicans insist they will not back down from a plan to push a speedy decision on the Keystone XL pipeline, one of President Barack Obama’s former top advisers makes the case that the project is essential for U.S. national security.  More »
(AP file photo/Paul Sakuma)

Shell moves closer to Westward Ho pipeline project

The Westward Ho should allow refineries to access the growing supply of domestic and foreign crude oil coming through St. James, the company said. The new pipeline would also complement new storage and logistics infrastructure that are currently being built in the St. James and Clovelly, La. areas.  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)

Brazil lawsuit against Chevron may scare investors

A business analyst says the nearly $11 billion lawsuit filed by Brazilian prosecutors against San Ramon, Calif.-based Chevron Corp. because of an offshore oil leak could scare away foreign capital needed to develop Brazil’s huge offshore oil deposits.  More »