The Association of American Railroads said Thursday that 119,634 carloads of crude moved in the second quarter of 2014, up 8.6 percent from the first quarter, up 10 percent on the year-ago period and the most ever, according to FuelFix.
Iraq’s oil ministry says it plans to start legal proceedings at the Court of Piraeus in Greece against the shipping firm Marine Management Services, or MMS, whose tankers have transported crude produced independently by the Kurdistan Regional Government, Platts reports.
NEW ORLEANS (AP) — BP acted "recklessly" and bears most of the responsibility for the nation's worst offshore oil spill, a federal judge concluded Thursday, exposing the energy giant to roughly $18 billion in additional penalties.
BP's market value plummeted by $7 billion after the ruling as its shares suffered their worst percentage decline in almost three years. By Thursday afternoon, company shares had fallen almost 6 percent to $45.05.
BP PLC, which vowed to appeal, already agreed to pay billions in criminal fines and compensation to people and businesses affected by the disaster. U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier's ruling that BP acted with "gross negligence" deals instead with civil responsibilities, and could nearly quadruple what the London-based company has to pay in fines for polluting the Gulf of Mexico.
The judge held a non-jury trial last year to apportion blame for the Macondo well spill, which killed 11 men on the Deepwater Horizon rig and spewed oil for 87 days in 2010.
He ruled that BP bears 67 percent of the blame, Swiss-based drilling rig owner Transocean Ltd. bears 30 percent, and Houston-based cement contractor Halliburton Energy Services is responsible for 3 percent.
Oil edged lower Thursday morning following Wednesday’s strong rebound, after word that the American Petroleum Institute reported an increase in gasoline and distillate stocks last week. West Texas Intermediate crude for October delivery was 42 cents lower to $95.12 a barrel in electronic trading on the Nymex, while in London Brent crude dropped 20 cents to $101.57, Bloomberg reports.
Buckeye Partners LP’s $860 million deal to take on an 80 percent interest in Trafigura AG’s facilities to handle condensate in the Eagle Ford Shale – as well as company executives’ discussion of building another splitter -- reflects the wider industry’s increasing interest in the lightly processed product, FuelFix reports.
CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — The parts of the political base holding up President Nicolas Maduro appear to each have won a slice of power with a Cabinet shuffle that breaks up the control one man held over Venezuela's oil and economy.
After months of foreshadowing a big announcement, Maduro gave a sweeping presentation late Tuesday in which he sidelined his most powerful minister, Rafael Ramirez, divvying out his authority to appointees favored by different sectors in the coalition government.
Ramirez, a fixture of the South American country's 15-year socialist revolution, leaves his multiple roles of oil minister, president of the state-run oil giant PDVSA and top economic adviser. His departure strengthens the wing with close ties to Maduro's mentor, Hugo Chavez: Asdrubal Chavez, an engineer and cousin of the late president, steps in as oil minister; the populist leader's son-in-law, Jorge Arreaza, keeps his appointed role as vice president.
Word of a report from the American Petroleum Institute that U.S. crude inventories fell last week sent oil prices higher Wednesday, alongside hopes for an easing in the Ukraine crisis. West Texas Intermediate crude for October delivery came close to recovering its Tuesday losses, gaining $2.66, or 2.9 percent, to a settlement of $95.54 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, while in London Brent crude jumped $2.43 to $102.77, Bloomberg reports.
Oil prices bounced back after plunging Tuesday, but the upside was kept in check by substantial supplies and continuing demand concerns. U.S. benchmark crude for October delivery was 89 cents higher Wednesday morning in electronic trading on the Nymex, to $93.77 a barrel, while in London Brent crude gained $1.08 to $101.42, Reuters reports.
Rhea Suh -- an Interior assistant secretary who became the target of Republican anger during spring confirmation hearings – is leaving the government to become the president of the Natural Resources Defense Council, the environmental group that some in the GOP charge is the driving force behind the administration’s carbon rule, The Washington Post reports.
Adviser John Podesta says President Obama will back initiatives that help countries build their resilience in the face of risks from climate change when he attends the U.N.’s climate summit in New York next week, National Journal reports.
The sanctions package up for a vote in the Senate Foreign Relations Committee Thursday is aimed at companies -- like Exxon Mobil, BP and Shell -- that finance unconventional oil projects in Russia, including drilling in the Arctic, in deep water and in shale, Platts reports.
A report from the Energy Information Administration showing a spike in U.S. inventories last week pressured oil prices Wednesday. West Texas Intermediate crude for October delivery fell 46 cents to settle at $94.42 a barrel on the Nymex, while in London November Brent dipped 8 cents to $98.97, Bloomberg reports.
Chevron came up empty after investing money and scientists’ time in the search for commercially viable ways to get fuel from feedstocks, CEO John Watson told the Economic Club of Minnesota Tuesday, Bloomberg reports.
Environmentalists are encouraged by a ruling from U.S. District Court Judge R. Brooke Jackson in Colorado last week, which scrapped Obama administration moves to expand coal leasing on federal lands and also said regulators had to explain why they weren’t using a calculation on the social cost of carbon in making their decisions, E&E reports.
Now that solar modules are cheaper, SolarCity says it will install panels more densely on flat rooftops and put them angled toward each other in an east-west orientation, which should generate more power earlier and later in the day, at times when the electricity demand is higher, E&E reports.
By 2050 the Lincoln and Jefferson Memorials could end up as islands in a flooded Potomac River, under a scenario envisioned in a report issued by the Climate Central research group, according to The New York Times.