Energy & Environment Correspondent
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May 17, 2013

Oil price probe widens, US senator wants Justice Dept help

LONDON/WASHINGTON, May 17 (Reuters) – A European probe into
possible oil price manipulation expanded with the investigation
of a small niche trading house in the Netherlands and a key U.S.
senator on Friday called for the Justice Department to join the
investigation.

Dutch trading house Argos Energies, a mid-sized trading
company that deals in physical oil products and owns storage
facilities, was visited by inspectors from the European
Commission on Tuesday, a source familiar with the investigation
said on Friday.

May 11, 2013

Exclusive: U.S. decision on Keystone XL pipeline seen dragging past summer

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Obama administration is unlikely to make a decision on the Canada-to-Nebraska Keystone XL pipeline until late this year as it painstakingly weighs the project’s impact on the environment and on energy security, a U.S. official and analysts said on Friday.

The decision may not be made until November, December or even early 2014, said a U.S. official, as President Barack Obama will not rush the process, which still has a number of stages to work through. One of those stages has not even begun yet and will run for months.

May 9, 2013

U.S. blacklists firms for evading Iran oil sale sanctions

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States has blacklisted two companies it says helped Iran evade sanctions on oil sales and slapped penalties on four Tehran-based firms it says helped the Islamic Republic enrich uranium, the latest efforts to pressure Iran’s nuclear program.

“As long as Iran tries to evade our sanctions, we will continue to expose their deceptive maneuvers,” David Cohen, the undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence at the Treasury Department said in a news release.

May 8, 2013

Senators seek to block Iran from billion-dollar reserves

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Legislation introduced by a bipartisan group of U.S. senators on Wednesday would block Iran’s access to billions of dollars worth of foreign currency reserves in the latest congressional effort to slow development of the Islamic Republic’s disputed nuclear program.

Lawmakers in Washington say the government in Tehran taps the reserves held in banks around the world, mostly in euros, to get around U.S. and EU sanctions on oil sales that have damaged Iran’s economy.

Apr 30, 2013

Saudi embraces US oil boom even as kingdom’s output steadies

WASHINGTON, April 30 (Reuters) – The oil minister of Saudi
Arabia, the world’s top crude oil exporter, welcomed the U.S.
energy renaissance on Tuesday but added that the boom in new
global output may hold the kingdom’s production at current
levels until the next decade.

“This is good news,” Ali al-Naimi said about the U.S. oil
and gas production boom at the Center for Strategic and
International Studies in Washington, in a speech billed as his
first on energy in the United States in four years.

Apr 30, 2013

Saudi-U.S. relations to withstand North American oil boom

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Experts say Asia and Iran are the keys to maintaining a strong – but evolving – U.S.-Saudi Arabia energy relationship.

Saudi Oil Minister Ali al-Naimi is expected to share his optimistic view on the future of Asian oil demand on Tuesday when he gives a major energy speech, billed as the first in the United States in four years.

Apr 23, 2013

US environment regulator slams Keystone pipeline review

WASHINGTON, April 22 (Reuters) – The U.S. environment
regulator on Monday said the State Department must take a harder
look at climate and other impacts of the Canada-to-Texas
Keystone XL oil sands pipeline before the Obama administration
issues a final decision on the project.

The Environmental Protection Agency rated the State
Department’s 2,000-page March 1 draft review of the TransCanada
Corp pipeline project as “insufficient,” in a letter to
department officials as a public comment period ended on Monday.

Apr 12, 2013

U.S. targets companies accused of evading Iran sanctions

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States on Thursday slapped financial penalties on an Iranian businessman, a Malaysian bank and a network of companies it accused of attempting to evade international sanctions on Iran’s nuclear program through money laundering.

The Treasury Department blacklisted Babak Zanjani and First Islamic Investment Bank for providing financial and other support to the National Iranian Oil Company.

Apr 11, 2013

U.S. targets web of companies accused of evading Iran sanctions

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Treasury Department said on Thursday it has imposed sanctions on an Iranian businessman, a Malaysian bank and a network of companies it accused of attempting to evade international sanctions on Iran through money laundering.

The department blacklisted Babak Zanjani, the businessman, and First Islamic Investment Bank for providing financial and other support to the National Iranian Oil Company.

Apr 9, 2013

Alberta premier takes U.S. Canadian crude accidents in stride

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A pair of recent accidents that spilled Canadian crude oil in the United States is part of doing business in the energy industry and should not prevent the Keystone XL pipeline from moving forward, Alberta’s premier said on Tuesday.

“We have to be honest about the fact that if we do have energy development, there is the risk of really unfortunate incidents,” Alison Redford, whose province is home to Canada’s oil sands, said during a panel at the Brookings Institution.

    • About Timothy

      "I cover U.S. energy and environment policy and climate change. Moved to DC in late 2009 after a decade in New York. Author of "Diminishing Resources:Oil," which is one in a series of books for young adults."
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