Energy & Environment Correspondent
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Sep 7, 2012

U.S. officials fret emergency oil won’t ease fuel prices: sources

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Obama administration officials told energy experts this week they worry a release of crude from U.S. emergency reserves would do little to temper global oil prices partly driven by tighter supplies of refined fuel like gasoline.

At an informal consultation on Thursday, mid-level officials from the National Security Council, the Department of Energy and other bureaus made clear a top concern was tight oil product markets caused by constraints in refining capacity, two outside energy experts who attended the meeting said on Friday.

Sep 7, 2012

White House consults experts as it mulls tapping oil reserve

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Obama administration officials met with a handful of oil market experts on Thursday as the White House considers the merits of another release of emergency oil reserves – potentially one much larger than the last.

The meeting, originally scheduled for August but delayed by summer vacations, did not center entirely on the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR), according to non-government sources who attended the meeting.

Sep 6, 2012

White House consults oil experts on SPR; some say “go big”

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Obama administration officials met with a handful of oil market experts on Thursday as the White House considers the merits of another release of emergency oil reserves — potentially one several times larger than the last.

The meeting, originally scheduled for August but delayed by summer vacations, did not center entirely on the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, according to nongovernment sources who attended the meeting. But it was still read by some as a sign that President Barack Obama is intent on pressing ahead with an unprecedented second tapping of government oil supplies.

Jul 29, 2012

U.S. probes Enbridge Wisconsin oil pipe spill; line still shut

WASHINGTON/CALGARY (Reuters) – The U.S. pipeline safety agency launched an investigation on Saturday into an oil spill in Wisconsin on Enbridge Inc’s network that briefly shut much of the company’s pipeline system feeding Canadian crude to the U.S. Midwest.

Enbridge’s 318,000 barrel per day Line 14 pipeline, which carries light sweet Canadian crude to Chicago-area refineries, was shut on Friday after an estimated 1,200 barrels of oil were leaked, and the Canadian company said on Saturday it did not have a restart time for the pipeline yet.

Jul 28, 2012

US pipeline agency probes Enbridge oil spill in Wisconsin

WASHINGTON, July 28 (Reuters) – The U.S. pipeline safety
agency launched an investigation on Saturday into an oil spill
in Wisconsin on Enbridge Inc’s network that forced the
partial shutdown of a main artery carrying light sweet Canadian
crude to Chicago-area refineries.

Enbridge’s 318,000 barrel per day Line 14 pipeline, part of
the Lakehead system, was shut after an estimated 1,200 barrels
of oil were leaked. This happened almost two years to the day
after another major spill in a different section of the line, in
Michigan.

Jul 27, 2012

Petition to waive ethanol mandate could come next week

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – At least one of four states hoping to ease requirements on adding grain-based ethanol to gasoline is expected to petition the federal government as soon as Monday, as the worst drought in 50 years threatens higher corn prices and lowers margins for livestock producers.

Governors from states that may petition the Environmental Protection Agency to waive the mandate known as the Renewable Fuel Standard, or RFS, include Republicans Nikki Haley of South Carolina, Dave Heineman of Nebraska, Rick Perry of Texas, and Democrat Mike Beebe of Arkansas, an ethanol industry source said.

Jul 25, 2012

U.S. EPA finds remaining water safe in famous fracking town

WASHINGTON, July 25 (Reuters) – The U.S. Environmental
Protection Agency is discontinuing water deliveries to four
homes in a rural Pennsylvania town that attracted national
attention after residents complained that natural gas drilling
polluted wells.

Further testing showed no reason for further action, the EPA
said on Wednesday.

The EPA had been delivering water since January to four
homes in Dimock, Pennsylvania where the agency did a second
round of water sampling after residents and local regulators
submitted data that suggested water at the homes could be
contaminated.

Jul 20, 2012

EPA to review mercury rule on new power plants

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. environmental regulator said on Friday it will review recently finalized limits on mercury emissions on new coal-fired power plants in a process that could ease the rules for companies building five new projects.

The Environmental Protection Agency finalized the first-ever rules on mercury pollution from coal plants late last year.

Jul 19, 2012

Analysis: Why the U.S. ethanol mandate is drought-resistant

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – At first glance, it would seem like a golden moment for critics of the U.S. law that requires more and more corn to be made into ethanol every year.

The worst U.S. drought in half a century has fueled a 50 percent surge in corn prices to a record of more than $8 a bushel, heightening fears of a food crisis. Even as the crop wilts, the farm economy has rarely looked healthier thanks to high property prices, widespread accessibility to insurance and a four-year commodity boom.

Jul 11, 2012

Romney campaign hits Obama admin’s delay of LNG exports

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A representative for Mitt Romney on Wednesday criticized Obama administration delays on whether to allow more natural gas exports, but stopped short of saying the former Massachusetts governor would speed the process should he become president.

The Obama administration, which must approve exports of liquefied natural gas, or LNG, to all but a handful of countries with free trade agreements, has approved one terminal for exports, Cheniere Energy’s Sabine Pass.

    • 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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