Sierra Club seeks to block natural gas terminal

Sierra Club seeks to block natural gas terminal

The Sierra Club said announced last week that it wants to block a Virginia energy company’s plan to export liquefied natural gas through a terminal that it owns in Maryland, a report from Reuters said.

“The environmental group, which opposes the export terminal as part of its wider fight against natural gas drilling from shale deposits, can weigh in on certain changes at the site of the proposed terminal under a 1972 legal agreement. The Sierra Club says that under that settlement, it has a say over whether Dominion can convert an import terminal at Cove Point, near a state park, into an export plant. Dominion’s CEO disagreed with that view during a conference call with analysts on Thursday,” according to reporter Ayesha Rascoe.

Via PennEnergy

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Repsol YPF said to cut gas shipment on Argentina noncompliance

Repsol YPF said to cut gas shipment on Argentina noncompliance

Repsol YPF SA (REP) blocked a shipment of liquefied natural gas to Argentina because the government failed to supply the Madrid-based company with a letter of credit, Matt Craze reports for Bloomberg.

Spain’s largest oil company diverted the course of the vessel on April 27 after the letter failed to arrive, said the person, who asked not to be identified because Repsol hasn’t made details of the shipment publicly available. Repsol requires the letter of credit for shipments after Argentina defaulted on $95 billion in debt in 2001, the person said. YPF, Repsol’s Argentine unit, anticipated Repsol would block shipments in order to ‘damage’ Argentina after the government seized control of the company this month, YPF said on its website April 28,” according to Craze.


EPA official under fire for ‘crucify’ quote quits

EPA official under fire for ‘crucify’ quote quits

Politico reports the Environmental Protection Agency’s Al Armendariz has quit.

“The EPA regional administrator who suggested the agency was out to ‘crucify’ lawbreaking oil and gas companies has resigned. Al Armendariz said he regrets his comments and doesn’t wish to be a distraction for the agency, he wrote in a letter to EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson on Sunday. Armendariz headed EPA’s Region 6, which covers Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas. Last Wednesday, Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) unveiled a 2010 video of the regional administrator making controversial comments about EPA enforcement against oil and gas companies.Armendariz said his policy is analogous to Romans overtaking villages, noting that they would “crucify” the first five men they saw as an example. The EPA would do the same to law breakers, he said,” according to the article written by Dan Berman and Erica Martinson.

Links to previous Daily Energy Dump postings on this here, here, here and here 


Coal’s rocky future

Coal’s rocky future

“Coal is in a struggle with a perfect adversary: ultracheap natural gas. With all the shale reserves unlocked by fracking, gas prices have steadily declined since mid-2008, to the point where they’re hovering around $2 per million British thermal units for the first time in a decade. That’s lower than coal prices. The natural gas is all domestically derived energy, so the country’s fuel import bill doesn’t go up. It’s clean. And it’s so abundant that the industry may run out of places to store it. Utilities that switch to natural gas are already passing savings on to customers. In 2013 residential U.S. utility bills should fall 1 percent,” Matthews Philips said in Businessweek.


Solyndra leaves toxic waste, serious environmental, health and safety issues

Solyndra leaves toxic waste, serious environmental, health and safety issues

Solyndra continues to amaze. After wasting $500 million in taxpayer-funded subsidies, it closes its doors and leaves an environmental mess for the someone else to clean up.

“Three months ago, CBS 5 caught Solyndra tossing millions of dollars worth of brand new glass tubes used to make solar panels. Now the bankrupt solar firm, once touted as a symbol of green technology, may be trying to abandon toxic waste.”

Via Katie Pavelich at Townhall


Energy Committee warns EPA official he’ll be hauled in to testify

Energy Committee warns EPA official he’ll be hauled in to testify

Over at PJTattler, Bridgett Johnson notes the Energy and Commerce Committee is asking for numerous documents relating to the Environmental Protection Agency’s enforcement priorities, strategies and procedures for Region 6. That is the Dallas, Texas office of EPA official Al Armendariz’s who, it was revealed last week, said he wanted to “crucify” oil companies. Armendariz has since apologized.

“While you have apologized for these comments, there is genuine concern that your comments reflect the agency’s overall enforcement philosophy,” a letter from Energy and Commerce Committee Fred Upton (R-Mich.) calling Armendariz to testify said.

 

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Energy Transfer Partners to buy Sunoco for $5.3 billion

Energy Transfer Partners to buy Sunoco for $5.3 billion

In a deal that could gas-price and fuel shortage worries this summer, Pipeline operator Energy Transfer Partners LP said today it will buy Sunoco Inc for $5.3 billion in stock and cash to get into the more lucrative crude oil transportation business as natural gas pricesstay weak according to Reuters.

Sunoco shareholders will receive $25 in cash and 0.5245 Energy Transfer units, or $50.13, for every share they own, the article said. The offer represents a 22.5 percent premium to Sunoco’s Friday close of $40.91 on the New York Stock Exchange. 

“Sunoco, which was once a major independent refiner in the Northeastern United States, plans to end nearly 120 years in the U.S. refining business as high crude prices and slumping demand squeeze profits. Sunoco, which plans to get out of the refining business, said it will continue talks with private equity firm Carlyle Group LP for a joint venture to run its 335,000-barrel-per-day Philadelphia refinery. A deal with Carlyle would save the refinery, the biggest on the U.S. East Coast, from a planned closure.” 

Via Yahoo News


Oil & gas glossary definition of the day

Oil & gas glossary definition of the day

Today’s Oil & gas glossary definition of the day is Air drilling: A drilling technique whereby gases (typically compressed air or nitrogen) are used to cool the drill bit and lift cuttings out of the wellbore, instead of the more conventional use of liquids. 

The advantages of air drilling are that it is usually much faster than drilling with liquids and it may eliminate lost circulation problems.

The disadvantages are the inability to control the influx of formation fluids into the wellbore and the destabilization of the borehole wall in the absence of the wellbore pressure typically provided by liquids.


New bioenergy project from AREVA in Thailand

New bioenergy project from AREVA in Thailand

The global provider of EPC biomass power plants AREVA along with its local partner ENSYS have been selected for the construction of a biomass power plant located in the Supanburi Province, northwest Thailand, according to a brief in BiomassEnergy. 

“The plant will be fueled by biomass residues like rice husk and bagasse — a fiber remaining after the juicing of sugar cane husks — and is estimated to generate a total output of 9.9 MW electrical power, enough to provide 6000 to 8000 households with  green electricity. The project is scheduled for completion end of 2013.”


Assessing the untapped potential of hydropower

Assessing the untapped potential of hydropower

An inventory survey of existing dams in the United States by the Oak Ridge National Laboratory found that 54,000 have some potential for generating renewable power, according to an article by Bob Petz at Ecology.com.

“Harnessing the potential of existing, non-powered dams is attractive from a number of perspectives. Because the dams are already built, construction costs would be lower and generating capacity could be brought online more quickly. From an environmental perspective, using existing dams to generate power would theoretically have little added ecological impact, although actual impact would vary depending upon the site and the generating methods used.”

There are more statistics and a list of the top 50  non-powered dams and their hydropower potential at the link.

Via Topix.


Scientists develop liquid solar cells; can be painted onto surfaces

Scientists develop liquid solar cells; can be painted onto surfaces

Scientists at the University of Souther California have developed a potential pathway to cheap, stable solar cells made from nanocrystals so small they can exist as a liquid ink and be painted or printed onto clear surfaces, according to an article in ScienceDaily. The researchers discovered a synthetic ligand that not only works well at stabilizing nanocrystals, but actually builds tiny bridges connecting the nanocrystals to help transmit current.

“The solar nanocrystals are about four nanometers in size — meaning you could fit more than 250,000,000,000 on the head of a pin — and float them in a liquid solution, so ‘like you print a newspaper, you can print solar cells,’ said Richard L. Brutchey, assistant professor of chemistry at the USC Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences.”


Wind farms may contribute to global warming, new research suggests

Wind farms may contribute to global warming, new research suggests

A new study from the State University of New York at Albany casts doubt on the utility of wind farms, and that wind farms may contribute to global warming, according to Melissa Stusinski at the Inquisitr.

“While wind energy is known to be cleaner than burning fossil fuels, researchers have found that wind farms have a direct effect on the environment around them, warming the local climate by as much as 0.72 degrees Celsius per decade.”

Added update: This article is a bit more detailed.

Via Instapundit


Natural gas is on a roll, executive declares

Natural gas is on a roll, executive declares

A top executive with one of the nation’s largest utilities said economic and regulatory factors are combining to push coal-energy companies to switch over to cheaper and cleaner natural gas, according to Eric Lipton at the New York Times Green blog. “Nicholas K. Akins, chief executive of Ohio-based AEP, said the company plans to retire 5 of its 25 coal-burning plants and shut down coal-powered units at other plants it owns in a shift that collectively means the elimination of about 5,000 megawatts of capacity. The result will be that by 2020, only about half of the power AEP produces will come from coal, down from about 67 percent last year. [...] “Renewable energy is expected to contribute a larger share of power to AEP’s mix by 2025, Mr. Akins said, but perhaps not as much as expected because of a decline in federal subsidies and continuing repercussions from the bankruptcy of Solyndra, the California solar manufacturer that collapsed last year despite receiving a $535 million federal loan guarantee.”


How much more will you pay to drive this summer

How much more will you pay to drive this summer

The U.S. Energy Information Administration “in its weekly report on fuel prices, said it now projects that the average price of a gallon of gasoline could hit a record $3.95 this summer,” according to Joseph B. White at The Wall Street Journal. “Gasoline prices could hit record levels this summer, the government forecast Thursday, and gasoline consumption could sink to the lowest level since 2001.”

Via Minyanville.com


U.S. land rig count was down -1.40% this week, down 27 rigs from last week

U.S. land rig count was down -1.40% this week, down 27 rigs from last week

For the week ending April 27, the total U.S. rotary rig count was 1,945 down 27 rigs from the previous week. Compared to last year, there were an additional 115 rigs drilling for oil & gas, a net increase of 6.3% year over year, according to EnergyDigger.com.

By state, Texas leads all others by a good margin with 921 with Oklahoma and North Dakota coming next with 198 and 196 rigs working, respectively. Pennsylvania counts 97 rigs as of week’s end. There are 28 states with active rigs working, nine of them with only one — Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Michigan, Nebraska, Nevada, Oregon, South Dakota and Virginia. 

Only two states have any offshore rigs going, Louisiana with 41 and Texas with four.


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