Energy Correspondent
Tom's Feed
Jul 19, 2010

Higher ethanol blends needed to support US pipeline

WASHINGTON, July 19 (Reuters) – A pipeline carrying ethanol
from the corn-producing heartland of the Midwest to big East
Coast cities would not be feasible without government backing
and a mandate requiring higher ethanol blends in gasoline.

The U.S. Energy Department was required by Congress to
assess the economic feasibility of building an ethanol
pipeline, which is being pushed by the struggling industry.

Jul 15, 2010

Draft bill to cut U.S. ethanol tax credit by 9 cents

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Democratic leaders on the U.S. House tax writing committee plan to push legislation to extend billions of dollars in tax credits for biofuels and renewable energy sources.

The draft legislation, a copy of which was obtained by Reuters on Thursday, would extend for one year the ethanol tax credit and a tariff on ethanol imports at a cost of nearly $3.8 billion.

Jul 15, 2010

House bills punish BP, boost drilling safety

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Legislation that could bar BP from getting new offshore oil leases in the United States passed another hurdle in Congress on Thursday while a separate bill to boost safety requirements for offshore drilling advanced through another congressional panel.

The legislation is among several dozen bills pending that would rewrite the regulatory rulebook and raise exploration costs for oil companies as lawmakers try to prevent another disaster like BP’s massive spill in the Gulf of Mexico

Jul 14, 2010

US oil refining capacity down first time since 2003

WASHINGTON, July 14 (Reuters) – U.S. oil refining capacity
fell for the first time since 2003 as the weak economy reduced
demand for gasoline, diesel fuel and other petroleum products,
the Energy Information Administration said on Wednesday.

There were 148 refineries at the beginning of this year
with an operating capacity of almost 17.6 million barrels per
day, down 87,760 bpd from last year, the Energy Department’s
analytical arm said. It the was the first decline in total U.S.
refining capacity since 2003.

Jul 14, 2010

House committee passes ban on future BP leases

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – BP Plc’s safety record would bar the company from getting new U.S. offshore oil and gas exploration leases for seven years under bill language passed on Wednesday by a U.S. House committee.

The Committee on Natural Resources voted to pass an amendment by Representative George Miller, a California Democrat, that would prevent BP and other companies from getting new leases from the Department of the Interior unless they pass safety and environmental requirements.

Jul 13, 2010

BP puts well cap in place; U.S. issues new drilling ban

NEW ORLEANS/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – BP said it had installed a cap meant to halt the flow of oil from its ruptured Gulf of Mexico well on Monday and the Obama administration issued a new moratorium on deepwater oil drilling.

The British energy giant said it had installed the 40-ton containment device on the sea floor a mile (1.6 km) beneath the ocean surface and said “the stack completes the installation of the new sealing cap.”

Jul 13, 2010

U.S. issues new offshore oil drilling ban

NEW ORLEANS/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Obama administration issued a new moratorium on deepwater oil drilling on Monday, a move the industry said was unnecessary and would place tens of thousands of jobs at risk.

Shares in BP Plc shares surged and sources said the British energy giant is in talks with U.S. energy company Apache Corp and others to sell assets worth up to $10 billion.

Jul 12, 2010

New U.S. oil drilling pause to end Nov. 30

WASHINGTON, July 12 (Reuters) – President Barack Obama’s
administration issued a new six-month moratorium on deepwater
oil drilling in the Gulf of Mexico, replacing an earlier ban
that had been struck down by U.S. courts as being too broad.

Interior Department Secretary Ken Salazar announced the new
drilling ban that will suspend most deepwater activities, just
as the initial plan intended.

Jul 12, 2010

U.S. to use more ethanol in 2011, but smaller market share

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Ethanol and other renewable fuels must account for 7.95 percent of total gasoline sales in 2011 to meet Congress’ mandate for 13.95 billion gallons of renewable fuels expected to be produced next year, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said on Monday.

In 2010, renewable fuels are expected to account for 8.25 percent of total gasoline sales to reach the mandate of 12.95 billion gallons.

Jul 12, 2010

U.S. to issue new drilling ban, BP enters asset talks

NEW ORLEANS/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Obama administration prepared a new moratorium on deepwater oil drilling on Monday, seeking to make the industry safer while protecting thousands of jobs during the worst spill in U.S. history.

As oil from BP Plc’s damaged well gushed into the Gulf of Mexico for an 84th day, Interior Secretary Ken Salazar was due to unveil a more flexible six-month moratorium after a U.S. appeals court last week struck down the original freeze.

    • About Tom

      "I have covered energy issues from the Reuters Washington bureau since 1997. These days I'm writing about the Obama administration's overhaul of U.S. energy policy, which focuses on developing alternative energy sources like wind and solar power and seeks to reduce petroleum use. However, the United States and the rest of world will rely on oil as a major energy source for the forseeable future. That's why much of my reporting still looks at legislation, regulations and White House policies that affect the oil industry, petroleum supplies and fuel demand."
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