LONDON, Aug 26 (Reuters) – China and the United States
appear headed for a damaging confrontation over the extent of
China’s territorial claims in the South and East China Seas.
Now that China has become the world’s largest importer of
oil, and energy more generally, the country’s need to develop
more indigenous energy supplies has become urgent.
LONDON, Aug 22 (Reuters) – “I believe and will prove that
our country is not deficient in oil reserves. If I can use my
20-year lifetime in exchange for a large oil field, I will.”
Those comments, recorded in an illustrated history of the
Songliao Basin published by China National Petroleum Corporation
(CNPC), are attributed to Wang Jinxi, an oil field worker who
became a hero of Communist China during the 1960s and 1970s.
LONDON, Aug 20 (Reuters) – For those trained in law, social
sciences and the arts, I have some bad news: the best days may
be over because the future belongs to scientists, engineers and
In high school and university classrooms across the United
States, a quiet revolution is underway as students adapt to a
difficult job market by choosing more quantitative disciplines.
LONDON, Aug 19 (Reuters) – Cheap natural gas is starting to
revolutionise traffic on U.S. roads, cutting bills for some of
the country’s heaviest fuel users while reducing carbon
emissions and other pollution.
The revolution is still in its very early stages. Gas
remains a niche vehicle fuel, with last year’s nationwide
consumption less than the amount of gasoline and diesel
dispensed in the tiny state of Vermont.
LONDON, Aug 15 (Reuters) – Following four decades of war,
sanctions, nationalisation and unrest, oil and gas producers are
gradually adjusting to rely less on the Middle East.
The countries around the Persian Gulf and on the Arabian
Peninsula still contain the greatest concentration of giant and
super-giant fields anywhere in the world and have some of the
most attractive oil and gas geology.
LONDON, Aug 13 (Reuters) – Gas-fuelled locomotives are not a
new idea. Plymouth Locomotive Company built the first
propane-fuelled rail engine as early as 1936.
The industry has experimented with natural gas-fuelled
trains on a small scale for the past 80 years without ever
moving beyond the prototype stage.
LONDON, Aug 12 (Reuters) – From modest beginnings in the
Barnett shale beneath the city of Fort Worth, unnoticed by most
energy analysts, horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing
spread across North America and transformed all aspects of the
energy landscape in under 10 years.
Now the most important question for energy analysts is what
technology will revolutionize the system next.
LONDON, Aug 7 (Reuters) – Bakken crude is no more dangerous
than other light sweet crudes and poses no greater risk when
transported by rail, according to a report prepared for the
North Dakota Petroleum Council (NDPC), which represents oil
producers and shippers in the state.
The NDPC report, written by engineering consultants Turner,
Mason and Company, and based on laboratory tests conducted by
the international inspection firm SGS, counters charges that
Bakken is unusually dangerous and pushes back against assertions
by U.S. government regulators that the oil is so uniquely
dangerous that it requires special safety measures.
LONDON, Aug 5 (Reuters) – By extracting a $13 million
penalty and imposing tough restrictions on future oil trading by
Arcadia and others, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading
Commission (CFTC) this week sent a powerful signal that laws
against market manipulation still have teeth.
The case challenges a now famous view expressed in 1991 by
commodities lawyer Jerry Markham that manipulation of commodity
futures prices had become an unprosecutable crime.
(“Manipulation of commodity futures prices: the unprosecutable
LONDON, Aug 4 (Reuters) – EU sanctions on Russia’s oil
sector will not seriously hamper the development of new oil
resources in either the short or the long term, though they
leave open the possibility of further escalation if relations
with Russia deteriorate in future.
Taken as a whole, the restrictions announced on July 31 are
best viewed as a piece of “sanctions theatre” designed to show
the public and Washington that the EU is doing something in
response to the downing of the Malaysian airliner over eastern
Ukraine while keeping the costs to EU energy firms as low as