Nuclear Regulatory Commission photo

Green groups urge court to halt nuke renewals

Environmental groups headed back to court on Wednesday to raise fresh challenges to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission's recent finding that spent fuel can be safely stored for decades at nuclear power plants after final closure.

The groups filed suit in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, charging NRC failed to live up to a court order to fully evaluate the safety of spent fuel held in pools and dry casks at plants if no permanent repository is built.

Oil

Shell hurt by oil price drop, names new chairman

AMSTERDAM (AP) — Shell, Europe's largest oil company, reported Thursday a small fall in third quarter net profit against a backdrop of sliding oil prices, and named former DuPont Chief Executive Charles Holliday to become chairman of the board in 2015.

Net profit was $4.46 billion, down 4.5 percent from $4.67 billion in the same period a year earlier. The 2014 figure includes a one-time $350 million provision for future tax liabilities in Australia.

Oil

Eni Q3 earns slide due to one-offs

MILAN (AP) — Italian oil giant Eni says third-quarter net profit slumped 57 percent, reflecting a one-off boost from capital gain in the same period of 2013.

Eni on Thursday reported net profit of 1.71 billion euros ($2.15 billion) for the three-month period ending Sept. 30, compared with nearly 3.9 billion euros in the same period last year that included a 3-billion-euro capital gain for the sale of a 20 percent interest in a Mozambique discovery. Adjusted net profit was up 2.5 percent.

Senate control could turn on 2 independents' moves

WASHINGTON (AP) — After millions of Americans vote next week, it's possible that one or two men will decide which party controls the Senate.

One is Sen. Angus King, a Maine independent who generally "caucuses" — or cooperates — with Democrats but says he might switch to the Republicans. The other is Greg Orman of Kansas, an independent candidate trying to oust Republican Sen. Pat Roberts.

Iran foils sabotage attempt on heavy water tanks

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iranian authorities have foiled a sabotage attempt involving tanks used for the transportation of heavy water, a key component in nuclear reactors, an Iranian newspaper reported on Thursday.

The independent Arman daily quoted Asghar Zarean, deputy head of Iran's nuclear department, as saying that Iranian nuclear experts thwarted the sabotage attempt "in recent weeks" but did not provide a more specific timing.

Guam to build $589M power plant to comply with law

HAGATNA, Guam (AP) — The Guam Power Authority is planning to build a $589 million power generator from scratch.

The Pacific Daily News reported Wednesday that the power authority plans to stop using its existing oil-burning power plants to comply with environmental regulations.

Plans for Antarctic marine reserve falter again

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — A plan to protect a vast swath of ocean off Antarctica by creating the world's largest marine reserve appeared headed for failure for the fourth time.

The countries that make decisions about Antarctic fishing finish a 10-day meeting Friday in Hobart, Australia.

Hopes fade for 18 trapped Turkish miners

ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — A senior government official says hopes are fading for 18 miners trapped in a flooded coal mine in southern Turkey.

Rescue workers are using huge pipes to pump water from 350 meters (380 yards) underground, but Energy Minister Taner Yildiz said Thursday that the operation is being hampered by mud and damage inside the mine.

After Fukushima, Japan gets green boom _ and glut

TOKYO (AP) — Like other Japanese who were banking on this country's sweeping move toward clean energy, Junichi Oba is angry.

Oba, a consultant, had hoped to supplement his future retirement income in a guilt-free way and invested $200,000 in a 50 kilowatt solar-panel facility, set up earlier this year in a former rice paddy near his home in southwestern Japan.

US voters deciding on billions for conservation

GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) — Voters across the nation are deciding whether to set aside billions of dollars for parks and preservation in what some environmentalists are calling one of the most significant elections for land conservation in American history.

Pollsters say it's one of the few places on Tuesday's ballots where voters of all kinds can find common ground.

The most money at stake is in Florida, California and New Jersey.

Sempra Energy photo

Natgas exports would grow economy but increase prices: EIA

Exports of liquefied natural gas in quantities of up to 20 billion cubic feet per day would likely raise prices for consumers and increase carbon emissions, but would also spur economic growth, according to a new analysis by the Energy Department's data wing.

The analysis, released Wednesday, was provided to Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz, who requested that EIA study the possible impacts of exports beyond the 12 billion cubic feet per day that has served as an informal upper limit to consideration by the department. 

Murray adds 100M tons to Illinois' coal holdings

ST. LOUIS (AP) — A leading U.S. coal company is adding roughly 100 million more tons of reserves and other resources to its southern Illinois portfolio, broadening its operations months after decrying federal regulation of the industry.

Ohio-based Murray Energy Corp. said Tuesday its purchases in Hamilton and Saline counties from Pennsylvania-based rival Consol Energy Inc. are strategically adjacent to the New Era mine operated by a Murray subsidiary, bringing its coal reserves nationwide to roughly three billion tons.

Democratic groups buy $1.3M in ads for NH race

WASHINGTON (AP) — A trio of Democratic-backing independent groups on Wednesday rushed to the air $1.3 million in TV ads to help New Hampshire Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, who at one time seemed heading toward a safe re-election.

Senate Majority PAC, Patriot Majority USA and Women Vote are running a joint ad criticizing Shaheen's Republican challenger, former Sen. Scott Brown, over his votes to protect subsidies for oil companies. The ad also blames Brown for exporting U.S. jobs to China and Mexico.

Dems rush to save suddenly vulnerable incumbents

WASHINGTON (AP) — Desperate Democrats are rushing to save suddenly vulnerable House incumbents, even in states where President Barack Obama cruised to double-digit victories, amid fresh signs of Republican momentum less than a week before the midterm elections.

The once friendly terrain of New York, California, Obama's native state of Hawaii and adopted state of Illinois all now pose stiff challenges to Democrats who are determined to limit their losses next Tuesday. Both parties agree the GOP will hold its House majority; the question is whether Republicans can gain enough seats to rival their post-World War II high water mark of 246.

Fewer grizzly bears dying in Yellowstone area

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — Fewer threatened grizzly bears are being killed in and around Yellowstone National Park, and scientists said Wednesday their numbers appear to be holding stable as officials consider lifting protections for the animals.

If the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service eliminates protections, it would open the door to limited hunting in the Yellowstone region of Idaho, Montana and Wyoming.

Oil

Chrysler recalls over 566,000 trucks, SUVs

DETROIT (AP) — Fiat Chrysler is recalling more than 566,000 trucks and SUVs in two recalls to fix malfunctioning fuel heaters that can cause fires and a software glitch that can disable the electronic stability control.

The recalls bring the newly merged company's total for the year to 6.4 million vehicles worldwide and 5.1 million in the U.S. as it continues to struggle with reliability problems. The total is short of Chrysler's annual record for recalls of 7.7 million set in 2000.

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