The Senate left Washington on Thursday after a contentious month that has left backers of the $5.4 billion Keystone XL pipeline searching for a way to get a vote to approve the controversial project after falling short on an energy efficiency bill that it was linked to.
The authors of a bill that would mandate approval, Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., and Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D., said they would press for a vote after senators return on June 2. But the path ahead appears as uncertain as ever, with Hoeven looking at new legislation while Landrieu said she still wants to vote on the efficiency bill and Keystone as a package.
TransCanada CEO Russ Girling told Bloomberg this week that shipping tar sands oil by rail is a more expensive option than moving it via pipeline, but his company is examining the possibility given the latest delays in its Keystone XL project.
Overall first quarter profit for TransCanada Corp. dropped 8 percent but adjusted earnings gained and revenue was up on higher pipeline demand during the bitterly cold winter, The Wall Street Journal reports.
This isn't the first time uncertainty about the route of the Keystone XL pipeline through Nebraska has led the Obama administration to delay in a permitting decision.
President Barack Obama cited the undetermined final alignment through the state when he denied the project in early 2012. That was the same reason State Department officials on Friday gave for extending a national interest determination review of the revised route, a move that likely puts off a decision until 2015 -- until after the mid-term elections.
The decision was scored as blatantly political by project proponents over the weekend, criticism that will continue for months to come. Yet it also opens the administration to renewed public pressure from opponents to reject the $5.4 billion TransCanada line once and for all.
Obama administration officials on Friday declined to say when they might approve or deny construction of the Keystone XL pipeline from Canada, following the announcement by the State Department of a new delay in completing its review process.
Senior department officials, who briefed reporters on condition of anonymity, denied trying to slow the $5.4 billion oil sands crude pipeline project past the November elections, as critics charged after the announcement.
NELIGH, Neb. (AP) — Opponents of a proposed pipeline that would carry oil from Canada south to the Gulf Coast have stamped a massive message of resistance into a Nebraska field that is in the project's path.
The artwork, which covers 80 acres and was done last week, reads "Heartland#NoKXL." It is the latest protest environmentalists and landowners have employed against TransCanada's proposed Keystone XL pipeline.
Critics of the pipeline want President Barack Obama to reject the project because they fear it could contaminate groundwater and contribute to pollution.
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Following an intensive amendment process that began last week, the House Resources Committee on Wednesday passed out its rewrite of a bill aimed at advancing a major liquefied natural gas project.
The committee considered dozens of proposed amendments and debated many of them at length — even some that were ultimately withdrawn — over the course of several days.
Co-chair Dan Saddler, R-Eagle River, said he thought Alaskans could take comfort that the committee did "good, hard work." Rep. Peggy Wilson, R-Wrangell, said she thought the bill was fair to all concerned.
Higher gasoline sales may translate into a higher Renewable Fuel Standard, Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy told an investors’ conference in New York, although she didn’t provide any specific figures, Bloomberg reports.
Worry that weak manufacturing data from China and Europe might slow global demand weighed on oil prices Tuesday, as did a strong dollar. WTI for October delivery plunged $3.08, or 3.2 percent, to settle at $92.88 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, while in London Brent crude slumped $2.45 to hit a 16-month low of $100.34 a barrel, Bloomberg reports.
Republicans from the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee as well as the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee -- who are investigating the influence the Natural Resources Defense Council has on Environmental Protection Agency policy decisions in the wake of a New York Times story on the issue -- have written to the regulators and the environmental advocacy group demanding that they turn over documents, The Hill reports.
The first half of 2014 saw the country’s electricity prices -– averaging 12.3 cents per kilowatt hour -- increasing faster than they have for the last five years, according to statistics from the Energy Information Administration, The Hill reports.
Texas has enough generating capacity to handle autumn demand including potential emergencies, the Electric Reliability Council of Texas said Tuesday, adding that preliminary projections figure the same for winter as well, barring a period of unusually high demand that also coincides with fuel shortages, Platts reports.
George P. Bush, a candidate for Texas Land Commissioner, told the Texas Tribune in an interview that he believes climate change poses a serious threat for the state, particularly from Gulf coast flooding, adding that he supports more reliance on natural gas and renewable energy for electricity.
Project on Government Oversight investigator Michael Smallberg says Department of Energy waivers allowing national lab consultants to serve on DOE’s Commission to Review the Effectiveness of the National Energy Laboratories run counter to the panel's mandate from Congress, according to E&E, which provides details of the waivers revealed through a Freedom of Information Act request.
Pam Haze, who retired Friday after decades of government service, was the top career budget official at the Interior Department for the past six years, winning plaudits from both sides of the aisle on Capitol Hill, E&E reports.
The Environmental Protection Agency and the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality have both approved permits for the Formosa Plastics Corp. to start work on expanding its Port Comfort petrochemical facility to include a unit to convert propane to propylene, as well as an ethane cracker, a company spokesman told FuelFix.