MACKAY, Australia (AP) — The Australian mining boom built over a decade on Chinese hunger for energy and raw materials is turning into bust for many business owners as China's cooling growth reverberates through a country accustomed to winning from the rise of an Asian economic giant.
BEIJING (AP) — Voracious demand for wood to feed factories for exports and satisfy wealthier consumers at home has turned China into a magnet for the illegal timber trade, causing other countries to strip their forests as Beijing does little to discourage the practices, an environmental group said in a report released Thursday.
The Australian government pushed a new 30 percent tax on big mining companies through Parliament on Monday but faces an uphill battle to reduce the tax burden on struggling companies outside the booming commodities sector.
The Senate passed the legislation 38 votes to 32, allowing the government to take a bigger slice of profits from a mining boom driven by Chinese and Indian demand for raw materials.
A senior official with the American Council for Capital Formation, which is funding “Unlock Crude Exports,” a new push to repeal the ban on shipping U.S. crude overseas, says doing so would allow the country to take full advantage of its energy boom, FuelFix reports.
The Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed rule to limit air pollution from refineries could have the opposite effect because it would force installation of new flaring systems instead of continuing the trend of reducing flaring, according to comments the American Petroleum Institute filed on the regulation, The Hill reports.
Oil was sliding again early Thursday after the Federal Reserve wound up its asset-purchase program and the Energy Information Administration reported the highest level of U.S. production since the 1980s. West Texas Intermediate crude for December delivery fell 81 cents to $81.39 a barrel in electronic trading on the Nymex, while in London Brent lost 86 cents to $86.26, Bloomberg reports.
Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., made a pointed reference to her influence as chair of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee while Republican candidate Rob Maness emphasized his support for increased oil and gas drilling, during the final debate of the campaign before the state’s Nov. 4 “jungle primary,” The Times-Picayune reports.
Republican Senate candidate Scott Brown visited the Seabrook nuclear plant Wednesday, and later in a statement accused incumbent Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H., of failing to support nuclear power, but she responded by saying nuclear energy is an important part of the fight against climate change, The Associated Press reports.
Osaka Gas Co. and Chubu Electric Power Co., which have contracted to buy gas from the proposed Freeport LNG terminal, will also supply $1.2 billion toward construction of the first unit, while $3.85 billion will come from Japanese banks, FuelFix reports.
Plaintiffs in a class action lawsuit against Exxon Mobil over a 2013 oil spill in Arkansas filed a motion in court this week demanding that the company make public documents about the maintenance and repair of the Pegasus pipeline, The Associated Press reports.
A spokesperson for the European Commission says a marathon negotiating session Wednesday failed to generate an agreement in the gas dispute between Russia and Ukraine, and talks are continuing Thursday, Reuters reports.
Iran may still be wrestling with finding a way to cut a deal with the West over its nuclear program, to ease biting sanctions, but falling oil prices have added even more pressure to the situation, The New York Times reports.