Fuel Fix

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Gasoline prices start falling

Pump prices have dropped 6 cents over two weeks to a national average on Friday of $3.88. Experts say gasoline could fall another nickel or more next week.  More »
Trucks dump dirt at an oil sands mine operated by Suncor in Alberta, Canada. The facility, which started operating in 1967, extracts tar-like bitumen from the oil sands. Once diluted with other materials or upgraded into a synthetic crude oil, the hydrocarbon can be transported by pipeline to refineries in the U.S.  (Jennifer A. Dlouhy/Houston Chronicle)

EU delays vote on stamping oil sands with anti-environment label

The European Commission is set to delay voting on whether to label oil from oil sands as worse for climate change than other forms of crude, delivering a victory to Canada.  More »
The Valero Refining Company, in Corpus Christi. (AP Photo/Paul Iverson)

EPA settles with refiners over fake renewable fuel credits

The Environmental Protection Agency reached settlement agreements with ExxonMobil Corp., Shell Oil Co. and other refiners after the companies bought renewable-fuel credits from a company that is accused by regulators with fraudulently claiming it had made clean fuel.  More »
This is an undated handout photo issued by Total E&P UK Ltd of Total's Elgin PUQ (Process/Utilities/Quarters)  platform. A two-mile exclusion zone has been set up around the offshore platform in the North Sea which has been evacuated after a gas leak, Tuesday, March 27, 2012. The leak on Total's Elgin PUQ platform, about 150 miles (241km) off the coast of Aberdeen, led to the evacuation of all 238 workers on Sunday. (AP Photo  / TOTAL E&P UK Ltd)

Total says Elgin gas leak rate has dropped

Total SA, Europe’s third-largest oil company, said a natural-gas leak that has lasted for more than three weeks in the U.K. North Sea has decreased to about one third of an initial estimate.  More »
A dispersant plane passes over an oil skimmer on April 27, 2010 as it cleans oil in the Gulf of Mexico near the coast of Louisiana. (AP file photo/Patrick Semansky)

Spill response firm bulks up on skimmers and boom

The Marine Spill Response Corp. has bulked up its arsenal of skimmers, boom and planes that can be tapped in case of a spill.  More »
Interior Secretary Ken Salazar officiates as Retired Rear Adm. James Watson is sworn in as director of the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement, with his wife Anne Watson, holding a Bible. (Photo: Tami Heilemann/Interior Department)

Watson: The lessons we learned from Deepwater disaster

Two years ago, as the crew of the Deepwater Horizon drilled into a massive new oil find deep under the Gulf of Mexico, the seemingly unthinkable happened: One of the most technologically advanced drill rigs in the world, valued at $560 million and commanded by professionals and engineers with decades of training, exploded and sunk after a series of catastrophic failures.  More »
BP's Atlantis platform in the Gulf. (BP image)

The Atlantis documents that BP didn’t want anyone to see

Last week, I wrote about the documents that have finally been made public in a court case over BP’s Atlantis platform in the Gulf of Mexico:  More »
Eleven wooden crosses have been erected on the beach in Grand Isle, La., bearing the names of 11 men who died in the Deepwater Horizon disaster two years ago. / HC

Steffy: 11 deaths refute offshore drilling safety myths

The wooden crosses rise from the beach in Grand Isle, La., each bearing the name of one of the men who died 40 miles offshore two years ago.  More »
A sign tower reaches toward the sky at the entrance to Schlumberger's Sugar Land campus. (AP file photo/Pat Sullivan)

Schlumberger 1Q profits jump 37.8 percent

Oil services giant Schlumberger Ltd. says profits jumped 37.8 percent in the first quarter thanks to strong drilling activity in the Gulf of Mexico, north Africa and the Middle East.  More »
People fill the tanks of their vehicules at an YPF station in Buenos Aires, Argentina,  Thursday, April 12, 2012. Spanish Industry Minister Jose Manuel Soria  has warned that the government will interpret any "hostile gestures" against Spanish companies abroad as an act of aggression, in an apparent reference to a conflict with Argentina over an oil company controlled by Spain's Repsol. YPF,  which is 57 per cent owned by Repsol,  has rejected Argentine government pressure to plough some of its profits back into the South American country.(AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko)

Repsol required to buy Eskenazi YPF Stake

Spain’s Repsol YPF SA (REP), whose YPF unit was nationalized by Argentina this week, agreed in 2008 to buy back the Eskenazi family’s shares in that oil company in the event that Repsol loses majority control.  More »
Total's Port Arthur refinery (Dave Ryan/Beaumont Enterprise)

Total talks with Argentina about boosting natural-gas output

France’s Total SA (FP), Europe’s third- largest oil producer, is in talks with Argentina about increasing natural-gas supplies by more than 5 percent after the country took control of YPF SA in a dispute over crude output.  More »
A worker repairs an oil pipeline at Rumaila oil fields, near the southern city of Basra, Iraq, Sunday, Oct. 9, 2011. A pair of bombs struck two oil pipelines on Friday in southern Iraq, causing a temporary cut in production at the country's largest oil field, officials said Saturday. (AP Photo / Nabil al-Jurani)

Iraq plans to start second offshore crude export facility today

Iraq will begin operating a second offshore mooring facility for crude exports from the Persian Gulf, Dhia Jaafar, director general of Southern Oil Co., said.  More »