The public comment period on a new Transportation Department rule to boost the safety of oil shipments by rail ends Tuesday, with industry groups set to reiterate their stances that Bakken crude can be safely transported if properly classified and handled.
The American Petroleum Institute and the American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers were to file their comments by the deadline, and both planned to hold conference calls planned with reporters to highlight their views.
BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — The oil industry's lead trade group released new standards on Thursday for testing and classifying crude shipped by rail after prior shipments were misclassified, including a train that derailed in Canada and killed 47 people.
As with earlier orders from the federal government, the industry standards leave it to individual companies to decide how often to test crude in order to gauge its danger.
Bakken crude is safe enough that no further treatment is needed before it’s transported by rail, oil company executives told the North Dakota Industrial Commission Tuesday, The Wall Street Journal reports.
SAO PAULO (AP) — Brazil's state-controlled Petrobras oil company said six workers were injured in a fire at a refinery in the state of Sao Paulo.
Petrobras said in a statement it is investigating what caused Thursday's fire at the Henrique Lage refinery in the city of Sao Jose Campos. It is Brazil's third largest refinery, with a capacity to refine 250,000 barrels of oil per day.
The Sierra Club, Earthjustice and ForestEthics have filed a lawsuit to force the Department of Transportation to ban older DOT-111 tank cars from carrying crude, in the wake of a spate of explosions and fires after derailments, The Hill reports.
Oil and gas workers who open hatches on top of tanks at well sites are exposed to a higher level of benzene than is considered safe by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, according to a study published in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Hygiene, the Los Angeles Times reports.
Department of Transportation rules to tighten safety standards on oil trains is really a disguised Obama administration attempt to rein in fossil fuel development, climate change skeptic Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, R-Calif., told a senior DOT official at a hearing Tuesday, National Journal reports.
Freight trains carrying crude oil will be barred from being left unattended, under new rules being proposed by the Department of Transportation intended to prevent runaway train disasters like the derailment in Lac-Megantic, The Hill reports.
House Science, Space and Technology subcommittees hearing, "Bakken Petroleum: The Substance of Energy Independence." DOE Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Fossil Energy Christopher Smith, PHMSA Deputy Administrator Timothy Butters to testify.
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.
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit on Thursday lifted a stay on the Environmental Protection Agency’s implementation of its Cross-State Air Pollution Rule, although legal arguments on challenges to some aspects of the regulation are set to take place next March, E&E reports.
Producers for American Crude Exports, or PACE, for short, is made up of more than a dozen independent oil companies who would like to see the decades-old U.S. ban on crude exports overturned, Reuters reports.
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission staff has cleared the Constitution pipeline on its environmental impact, leaving Commissioners to make the final decision on the project, which is intended to add some 650 million cubic feet of natural gas capacity in New York and New England, FuelFix reports.
If the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission approves changes that PJM Interconnection will suggest to the rules, it’s possible the wholesale electricity market manager might find a way to keep a demand response program going despite legal challenges, E&E reports.
Rising global supply and sluggish demand were continuing to weigh on oil prices. U.S. benchmark crude for December delivery dropped $1.08 to settle at $81.01 a barrel on the Nymex, $1.74 lower than the price a week ago, while Brent finished at $86.13, a loss of 70 cents on the day and 3 cents less than last Friday’s settlement price, Reuters reports.
ConocoPhillips, alongside partners including BP and Exxon Mobil, has announced what it says is the first new drilling in the North Slope’s Kuparuk River Field in nearly a dozen years, a well to come on line in 2016 that will add 8,000 barrels a day of production, Platts reports.
In one of the most hotly contested and expensive House races in the country, Rep. Nick Rahall, D-W.Va., is battling against Republican candidate Evan Jenkins and powerful conservative groups backed by the Koch brothers, The New York Times reports.
Kristin Jacobs – who has turned in a strong performance in her campaign to be elected to the Florida House of Representatives in a flood-prone Miami district – is one of a number of candidates who are successfully pressing climate change as an issue even when polls say it’s not a top voter concern, The New York Times reports.
Opower says pilot programs run in Vermont and Southern California over the summer, which involved contacting customers to ask them to go easier on their air conditioning and then reporting back to them on how much electricity they saved compared to their neighbors, cut usage by nearly 3 percent on a number of hot days, The Washington Post reports.