Pollution

Noble Energy agrees to settle Colorado air pollution case

DENVER (AP) — Large oil and gas driller Noble Energy has agreed to a settlement over alleged air-pollution violations north of Denver, a deal federal officials say could cost the company up to $73.5 million.

The proposed deal, filed in federal court Wednesday, comes after regulators found the Houston-based company's oil storage tanks were emitting thousands of tons of volatile organic chemicals a year because of undersized vapor control systems, contributing to the region's ozone pollution problem.

Oil

Exxon Mobil firms to pay nearly $5M for Arkansas oil spill

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — The Justice Department says two subsidiaries of Exxon Mobil have agreed to pay almost $5 million in government penalties for a 2013 oil spill in a central Arkansas community.

As part of a consent decree set to be filed in a Little Rock federal court Wednesday, the companies would pay about $3.2 million in federal civil penalties in addition to addressing pipeline safety issues and oil-response capacity. They would pay $1 million in state civil penalties, $600,000 for a project to improve water quality at Lake Conway and $280,000 for the state's legal costs.

Oil

$134M proposed for 10 BP-funded oil spill recovery projects

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — State and federal officials overseeing $1 billion provided by BP PLC to spur recovery from the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill said Monday that they're proposing another 10 projects totaling $134 million.

About $700 million to repair environmental damage and enhance recreational access has been allocated previously, although some of that work has yet to begin.

Oil

What's changed in offshore drilling since BP spill

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — As oil gushed from BP's ruptured well five years ago and public outrage built by the day, the Obama administration issued a six-month moratorium on drilling in the Gulf of Mexico.

When the well was finally capped after nearly three months, political and industry pressure mounted on the White House to lift the ban, which it did about a month earlier than planned.

Oil

5 years after BP spill, drillers push into riskier depths

ON THE GULF OF MEXICO (AP) — Five years after the nation's worst offshore oil spill, the industry is working on drilling even further into the risky depths beneath the Gulf of Mexico to tap massive deposits once thought unreachable. Opening this new frontier, miles below the bottom of the Gulf, requires engineering feats far beyond those used at BP's much shallower Macondo well.

But critics say energy companies haven't developed the corresponding safety measures to prevent another disaster or contain one if it happens — a sign, environmentalists say, that the lessons of BP's spill were short-lived.

Oil

Secrecy shrouds decade-old oil spill in Gulf of Mexico

OVER THE GULF OF MEXICO (AP) — A blanket of fog lifts, exposing a band of rainbow sheen that stretches off the coast of Louisiana. From an airplane, it's easy to see gas bubbles that mark the spot where an oil platform toppled during a 2004 hurricane, triggering what might be the longest-running commercial oil spill ever to pollute the Gulf of Mexico.

Yet more than a decade after crude started leaking at the site formerly operated by Taylor Energy Company, few people know of its existence. The company has downplayed the leak's extent and environmental impact.

Oil

$5 billion in BP oil spill settlement payments so far

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The man who oversees settlement payments to people and businesses claiming economic losses as a result of BP's 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill says more than $5 billion has been paid out.

Patrick Juneau announced the milestone in a Wednesday news release, five days ahead of the disaster's fifth anniversary.

Oil

Exxon: $8.9B sought in New Jersey pollution case 'not real'

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — Exxon Mobil's top lawyer said Wednesday that a heavily criticized $225 million pollution settlement with New Jersey was reasonable and that the nearly $9 billion initially sought by the state shouldn't be used as a barometer because it was calculated using faulty methodology.

The settlement announced in March has drawn criticism from environmentalists and lawmakers in both parties who have said the state should have waited for a judge's ruling instead of settling for what they have a characterized as pennies on the dollar.

Oil

Mexico oil spill affects drinking water for Tabasco city

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Mexico's Gulf coast state of Tabasco has set up an emergency plan to supply drinking water to the capital of Villahermosa after oil thieves punctured a pipeline, contaminating rivers that normally supply the city.

The spill late last week sent workers with the state-owned oil company scrambling to limit damage, and four of Villahermosa's water treatment plants were shut down as a precaution.

Canadian crews work to contain fuel spill in Vancouver bay

VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) — A fuel spill has spread over areas of Vancouver's picturesque English Bay, coating waters in an oily sheen, a Port Metro Vancouver spokesman said Thursday.

John Parker-Jervis said a bulk vessel that carries grain appears to have been the source of fuel that spilled into the bay Wednesday. The bay is surrounded by apartments, businesses and the city's jewel, Stanley Park.

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