The Interior Department Bureau of Ocean Energy Management on Thursday completed a multi-year environmental review that sets the stage for new oil and gas seismic surveys off the Atlantic coast.
The expected surveys do not mean new drilling will happen anytime soon, if at all, a department official said. But the results will replace outdated information on mid- and southern Atlantic plays that will be used to decide whether to offer new leases after 2017.
Rig demand has dropped as major oil companies cut their exploration budgets, according to Transocean Ltd., owner of the world's biggest offshore drilling fleet, which predicts it could take up to two years for demand to recover, Reuters reports.
GILLSBURG, Miss. (AP) — Residents living above an oil-rich shale formation that stretches across southwest Mississippi and Louisiana have been waiting on a boom for years. A steady trickle of drilling is already boosting the rural region's economy, and spending by two oil companies could make 2014 the year that many other locals finally cash in on the oil far beneath their feet.
Already, Max Lawson has spent hours watching the round-the-clock work of shoving pipe into the ground in his back pasture. The process began two years ago when Encana Corp. built a big gravel pad, but didn't take off until late last year when a convoy of 200 trucks carted in a drilling rig and other equipment to bore into the earth looking for oil.
"They call it the Gillsburg Christmas tree," he said while standing near the brightly lit rig. "It looks like a little city over here at night."
ATHENS, Greece (AP) — Greece's prime minister says the cash-strapped country could earn up to 150 billion euros ($206 billion) in three decades from offshore oil and gas deposits.
Antonis Samaras said Wednesday the rough estimate, which is worth nearly half of Greece's 320 billion-euro debt mountain, was "neither optimistic nor pessimistic," and could increase depending on further exploration results.
He said surveys have provided "very strong indications of significant" reserves off Greece's western coast, and work is ongoing in waters off the island of Crete in the south.
The shale drilling fad will recede and producers will return their focus to familiar offshore fields, predicts Michelle Michot Foss at the University of Texas' Bureau of Economic Geology, FuelFix reports.
The Interior Department Bureau of Ocean Energy Management is expected to finalize as soon as Thursday a programmatic environmental impact statement for new offshore Atlantic Ocean oil and gas surveys, according to industry sources.
Completion of the statement, begun more than three years ago, could set in motion reviews of applications by companies to conduct the first Atlantic geologic and geophysical surveys since 1988. The prospect of those surveys has raised hopes by industry and states that new areas will be opened to leasing after 2017.
Support for a review of any proposal to send Canadian oil sands crude through the Portland Montreal Pipe Line by Republican Sen. Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire has environmentalists wondering if she will rethink her support for the Keystone XL project, E&E reports.
The Supreme Court heard arguments in a case that pits an electronics manufacturer against North Carolina landowners over groundwater pollution and whether a state statute takes precedence over federal law that exempts toxic waste cases from deadlines, E&E reports.
All four candidates vying for the Republican nomination to challenge Sen. Kay Hagan, D-N.C., in the November election said they didn’t think climate change was a fact, when asked the question in a debate Tuesday night, The Hill reports.
Arch Coal’s investment in DKRW’s proposed coal gasification plant has cost it $57 million, according to the annual report the company filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Casper Star-Tribune reports.
The EU’s top energy official will discuss sending gas to Ukraine through Slovakia in negotiations Thursday, and on Monday Moscow hosts Kiev’s energy minister for talks on Russian gas prices for Ukraine, Reuters reports.
Phil Radford, who became the youngest person to head the American operation for Greenpeace, is departing after four years of working on broadening the environmental group’s reach, National Journal reports.
The Chinese Ministry of Environmental Protection has lifted an eight month ban on the country’s two biggest refiners starting new projects, after China National Petroleum Corp. and Sinopec met pollution targets, The Wall Street Journal reports.