Εμφάνιση αναρτήσεων με ετικέτα Oil. Εμφάνιση όλων των αναρτήσεων
Εμφάνιση αναρτήσεων με ετικέτα Oil. Εμφάνιση όλων των αναρτήσεων

Τετάρτη, Φεβρουαρίου 25, 2015

Obama vetoes Keystone XL pipeline bill

The U.S. President Barack Obama vetoed the Keystone XL pipeline bill Tuesday, reiterating that the decision to build the project belongs to the government.

"Through this bill, the United States Congress attempts to circumvent longstanding and proven processes for determining whether or not building and operating a cross-border pipeline serves the national interest," said Obama in his veto message.


"This act of Congress conflicts with established executive branch procedures and cuts short through consideration of issues that could bear on our national interest, including our security, safety and environment, it has earned my veto," said Obama.

In a statement, U.S. Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell said: "It's extremely disappointing that President Obama vetoed a bipartisan bill that would support thousands of good jobs and pump billions of dollars into the economy."

The Senate will soon vote on an override no later than March 3, said McConnell.

However, right now the Republicans didn't get a veto-proof majority both in the Senate and the House.

The Keystone XL oil pipeline which is designed to go from Canada through the U.S. State of Montana and South Dakota to Nebraska has been delayed by the U.S. government for several years as the government failed to finish its environmental impact evaluation. 

  Xinhua - china.org.cn
25/2/15
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Κυριακή, Φεβρουαρίου 22, 2015

Obama Moves Forward on Arctic Drilling Despite Cleanup Challenges

The US Department of the Interior has proposed long-awaited federal regulations for oil and natural-gas in Alaska's Arctic region. Environmentalists have pointed out that the environment makes it nearly impossible to clean up spills.

The regulations point out the challenges in drilling in the Arctic environment and mandate extensive contingency plans for a swift response to spills. 

Spills are notoriously difficult to clean in the frigid and remote waters. Such rules include having an additional rig that could drill a relief well in the event the company loses control of the primary well.

According to analysis compiled by the National Energy Board, conditions in the area present huge obstacles to any potential cleanup efforts, even during the busy summer months. Looking at how wave heights and ice patterns could prevent the use of cleanup tools such as in-situ burning, containment and the use of dispersants, they determined cleanup would be impossible 20% of the time in June, 40% of the time in August and 65% of the time in October. After October, any response would most likely have to be deferred until the following season.


No company is yet drilling the Chukchi and Beaufort seas off the coast of Alaska yet, but Royal Dutch Shell is planning on starting exploratory drilling this summer. ConocoPhillips and Statoil also have leases in American Arctic areas but have yet to announce any drilling plans. However, Shell’s summer drilling will not be governed by that rule since it won’t be in place by then and would only apply to drilling operations farther in the future.

Shell was involved in a disastrous attempt to drill in the Arctic in 2012 when it was towing its Kulluk oil rig out into Dutch Harbor by ship. The ship lost control when a winter storm hit and the rig, along with 150,000 gallons of fuel and drilling fluid, later washed up along pristine Alaska coastline.


As a result, the Environmental Protection Agency fined Shell $1.1 million for violations of the Clean Air Act as a result of the Kulluk’s engines releasing nitrogen oxide, ammonia and other pollutants and they cited Shell with 33 air permit violations.

Since then, oil companies and environmentalists have been waiting to see how the Interior Department would react to industry lobbying efforts to drill in Alaska. It is believed that the region holds between 24 billion barrels of oil and 104 trillion cubic feet of gas comprising as much as 13 percent of the world’s undiscovered oil reserves and 30 percent of its undiscovered gas reserves, a potential boon for American production.

  sputniknews.com
 21/2/15
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Τρίτη, Φεβρουαρίου 17, 2015

Oil Prices Rising, Brent Crude Now Selling for Over $62 a Barrel

Brent crude has climbed to $62 per barrel in Asian trade on February 17, despite growing uncertainty regarding the Eurozone's future which has been caused by the recent failure in Greece's debt negotiations.

On the New York Mercantile Exchange, light crude futures for March delivery were traded at $53.16 per barrel, while on London’s ICE Futures exchange Brent crude for April delivery mounted by $0.70/1.1% reaching $62.10 a barrel.


Meanwhile the talks over a new financing deal for Greece broke down Monday, sparking controversy between Athens and its creditors. 


A growing uncertainty regarding the economic prospects of Greece within the bloc is predictably undermining the euro. 

In contrast, the US dollar is strengthening steadily. Experts note that the trend is likely to sour oil-market sentiments; however, Brent crude has beaten its second-highest record since the beginning of the year.
 [sputniknews.com]
17/2/15
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Σάββατο, Ιανουαρίου 31, 2015

US Lawmakers Urge Obama to Recall Plans for Offshore Drilling

The United States should recall its plan to conduct offshore drilling which might threaten the state of New Jersey environment and economy, US Senators Robert Menendez and Cory Booker, and Congressman Frank Pallone said in a letter to US President Barack Obama.

“The plan’s proposal for oil production in Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia would put New Jersey’s economy and shore communities at significant risk,” Menendez, Booker and Pallone said Friday. “We strongly urge you [President Obama] to consider removing all Atlantic planning areas prior to the issuance of the next draft of the Five-Year Plan.”

Lawmakers are concerned that in case of a drilling accident the state will see consequences similar to those after the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill catastrophe in the Gulf of Mexico, which caused long term marine and coastal damage, according to the letter.

Menendez, Booker and Pallone urged the White House to consider offshore energy production on wind power.

“In our home state of New Jersey, and for shore towns up and down the Atlantic coast, offshore oil drilling would present a risk to communities and businesses that depend on a clean and thriving coastline,” lawmakers said.

This week President Obama’s administration released a five-year Outer Continental Shelf Oil and Gas Leasing Program which may lead to the United States drilling for gas and oil in portions of the Atlantic Ocean, as well as opening new sections of the Gulf of Mexico for exploration.
 http://sputniknews.com/us/20150131/1017577632.html#ixzz3QOQA2NPL

 31/1/15
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Τετάρτη, Ιανουαρίου 21, 2015

US Senate Likely to Vote on Keystone XL Next Week

The US Senate will likely vote on the Keystone XL Pipeline bill next week before advancing it to US President Barack Obama’s desk for approval, Republican Senator from North Dakota John Hoeven said, following the president’s State of the Union speech on Tuesday.
 “I anticipate that next week sometime we’ll have a vote in the Senate [on the Keystone XL Pipeline bill] hopefully advance it and go to conference with the House and then send it to the president [Obama],” Hoeven said during an interview with C-SPAN when asked when the Keystone XL Pipeline bill would be voted on in the US Senate.

Senator Hoeven argued that President Obama was taking credit for the United States, producing more oil and gas and becoming more energy secure. However, Hoeven said that if the president vetoed the Keystone bill, as he has stated previously, he would be “holding up the kind of infrastructure we need to continue to do it again.”

During State of the Union address on Tuesday, Obama urged Congress to pass a bipartisan infrastructure plan that could create more jobs than the current Keystone XL Pipeline proposal, allowing the company TransCanada Corporation to build and operate the pipeline from Alberta, Canada, to the US Gulf Coast.

The US Senate will likely vote on the Keystone XL Pipeline bill next week before advancing it to US President Barack Obama’s desk for approval, Republican Senator from North Dakota John Hoeven said, following the president’s State of the Union speech on Tuesday.

“I anticipate that next week sometime we’ll have a vote in the Senate [on the Keystone XL Pipeline bill] hopefully advance it and go to conference with the House and then send it to the president [Obama],” Hoeven said during an interview with C-SPAN when asked when the Keystone XL Pipeline bill would be voted on in the US Senate.

Senator Hoeven argued that President Obama was taking credit for the United States, producing more oil and gas and becoming more energy secure. However, Hoeven said that if the president vetoed the Keystone bill, as he has stated previously, he would be “holding up the kind of infrastructure we need to continue to do it again.”

During State of the Union address on Tuesday, Obama urged Congress to pass a bipartisan infrastructure plan that could create more jobs than the current Keystone XL Pipeline proposal, allowing the company TransCanada Corporation to build and operate the pipeline from Alberta, Canada, to the US Gulf Coast.
 http://sputniknews.com/us/20150121/1017159145.html
21/1/15
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Δευτέρα, Ιανουαρίου 19, 2015

Cleanup begins on Yellowstone River for oil leak near Glendive

Cleanup efforts have begun on the Yellowstone River downstream from where an oil leak was reported over the weekend.

According to Paul Peronard, the on-scene coordinator for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, crews are using two techniques to cleanup the estimated 50,000 gallons of oil that leaked into the river from the Bridger Pipeline company's Poplar pipeline system on Saturday.

The crews are using a traditional boom, which doesn't work well in the swift water conditions, so it is being backed up by secondary capture point near Crane, which is located between Savage and Sidney about 30 miles away from the spill site.


At the secondary location crews are using what is called an ice slotting technique in which cut holes in the ice and then capture the oil using a boom that is lowered through the ice.

Finding a location where the ice was thick enough was difficult because of the condition of the ice needing to be combined with a location to get trucks and pumping equipment to the river.

Should the oil reach Sidney, there is no water intake in Sidney on the Yellowstone River.

There is a water intake for Savage on the Yellowstone River, and crews have placed a preventative boom there and are making preventative arrangements around the Intake Diversion Dam.

The Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks has joined the emergency response team. Both Pallid Sturgeon, which are endangered, and Paddlefish are in the area.

Crews are attempting to keep oil from getting to the confluence of the Yellowstone and Missouri rivers where both of the fish species spawn.

Meanwhile, authorities said residents in the Glendive area who have smelled petroleum in their water need to call 406-377-3318 ext 16. The number connects to a city office, but they are taking information off an answering machine because the office is closed.

Callers will need to leave their name, number, and the address of where the smell was detected.

Officials are mapping out where the smells are reported.

As of 11:30 a.m. Monday, authorities said they still believe there is not a problem in the water distribution system. They have flown samples out of the water treatment plant in Glendive to a lab in Billings to be tested.

 http://www.kxlf.com/news/cleanup-begins-on-yellowstone-river-for-oil-leak-near-glendive/
19/1/15
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Παρασκευή, Ιανουαρίου 16, 2015

Canarias ve como un “éxito” el fin de las prospecciones petrolíferas de Repsol

El presidente de Canarias, Paulino Rivero, afirmó este jueves que su Gobierno considera "un éxito para las islas" y "una garantía para las próximas generaciones" la paralización de las prospecciones petrolíferas que estaba realizando Repsol en aguas próximas a la región.

En un comunicado, Repsol informó este viernes que "el análisis de las muestras obtenidas en el sondeo denominado Sandía confirma la existencia de gas sin el volumen ni la calidad suficientes para considerar una futura extracción".

Rivero insistió, en una rueda de prensa, en que "no hay que fiarse" de esta decisión de Repsol, porque "puede obedecer a razones electorales" del Partido Popular (PP). "No hay que descartar esta posibilidad, por eso seguiremos batallando en todos los frentes para garantizar la protección de las aguas próximas a Canarias", insistió el presidente canario.

Por su parte, el presidente del Gobierno de Lanzarote, Pedro San Ginés, ante la posibilidad de que esta retirada de Repsol pueda ser temporal, exigió al Ministerio de Industria, Energía y Turismo que se suspendan "definitivamente" los permisos de exploración petrolífera otorgados a Repsol en aguas canarias. San Ginés, también mostró su "satisfacción" por el anuncio de la petrolera.

La opinión del Gobierno español es muy diferente. El subsecretario del Ministerio de Industria, Enrique Hernández Bento, calificó hoy como "una muy mala noticia para los intereses energéticos de España" el anuncio de Repsol de paralizar los sondeos en Canarias.

Las prospecciones petrolíferas que se estaban realizando en Canarias se situaban a 54 kilómetros de la Isla de Fuerteventura y a 62 de la de Lanzarote.

  http://mundo.sputniknews.com/ecologia/20150116/1033329305.html
16/1/15
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Russian oil company CEO says oil price could reach $25 per barrel

The price of oil could fall to $25 per barrel, head of Lukoil Vagit Alekperov told journalists on Friday.

Alekpetov said that based on the latest statements from Saudi Arabia, he cannot rule out a price drop to $25. He added that he expects significant price fluctuation this year, considering that by January 15 the price varied within a 10% range.


"That has never happened before" Alekperov said.

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) reported Thursday the global oil demand forecast has been raised for 2015 to 92.3 million barrels per day from 92.26 million bpd. The US oil output forecast for 2015 has been raised to 13.81 million bpd from 13.72 million bpd. 


The organization also said it expects decline in demand for oil from organization’s member-states in 2015 by 100,000 barrels per day to 28.8 million barrels. 

After the announcement the price of Brent futures for February delivery grew by 0.7% on the Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) in London on Thursday to $49.07 per barrel.
   http://itar-tass.com/en/economy/771549
16/1/15

Πέμπτη, Ιανουαρίου 15, 2015

US sets goal to cut methane emissions by oil, gas industry

The US government on Wednesday announced a new goal to cut methane emissions from the oil and gas sector by 40 to 45 percent from 2012 levels by 2025, as part of its efforts to fight climate change.

"Today's actions on methane emissions are an important step to take on climate change, putting us on track to achieve President ( Barack) Obama's goal of cutting net greenhouse gas emissions 26-28 percent below 2005 levels by 2025," the White House said in a statement. "Achieving this goal would save up to 180 billion cubic feet of wasted natural gas in 2025 -- enough to heat more than 2 million homes for an entire year."

To meet that goal, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will issue a proposal to set standards for methane emissions from new and modified oil and gas production sources this summer, while the Interior Department will update its standards to reduce methane leaks from wells on public lands, the White House said.

In addition, the Department of Energy will get 25 million US dollars in funding to develop and demonstrate technologies to identify and reduce natural gas leaks.

Methane, a major component of natural gas, accounted for nearly 10 percent of US greenhouse gas emissions in 2012, of which nearly 30 percent came from oil production and the production, processing, transmission and distribution of natural gas, said a statement from the EPA.

While methane emissions from the oil and gas industry have declined 16 percent since 1990, they are projected to increase by about 25 percent over the next decade if no additional steps are taken, the EPA said.

The United States is now the largest natural gas producer in the world, and its oil production is at the highest level in nearly 30 years, according to the EPA.

   Source: Xinhua - globaltimes.cn
15/1/15
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Σάββατο, Ιανουαρίου 10, 2015

US House approves Keystone XL pipeline (266 votes to 153)

The Republican-controlled House approved the Keystone XL oil pipeline easily on Friday, ignoring the recent veto threat against this project from US President Obama.

The House passed the project by 266 votes to 153, the tenth time that the chamber has passed the pro-Keystone legislation. The Senate is set to consider the legislation next week.


Just hours before the House's vote, Nebraska's Supreme Court overturned a lower court decision to greenlight the construction of the project, ruling out one of the arguments that the White House can block the project.

The White House spokesman Eric Schultz said in a statement that the administration would incorporate the court's decision into its evaluation of Keystone.

"President Obama is out of excuses for deciding whether or not to allow thousands of Americans to get back to work," Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell said in a statement referring to the court decision.

But Schultz also reiterated the president's veto threat saying the House bill still conflicts with longstanding presidential authority and the review process of complex issues bearing national interests.

"If presented to the president, he will veto the bill," said Schultz.

The 7-billion-US dollar project is proposed to go from Canada through the US State of Montana and South Dakota to Nebraska, where it would connect with existing pipelines to carry more than 800,000 barrels of crude oil a day to refineries along the US Gulf Coast.

The project has been delayed for years as critics say it could worsen climate change by enabling further growth from the oil sands, which create higher greenhouse gas emissions than some other forms of production.

But Republicans insist that it will create jobs and enhance US energy security and Mitch McConnell has said the first bill that the Republican-led Senate will bring to President Obama's desk is the approval of the Keystone XL pipeline.

The White House said on Tuesday that President Obama would not sign the legislation approving the Keystone XL pipeline project before the State Department finishes its review process even if the Congress passed the controversial legislation.


Analysts said at present Republicans still do not have a veto- proof majority to pass the bill.

 Source:Xinhua - globaltimes.cn
10/1/15
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Πέμπτη, Ιανουαρίου 08, 2015

Leave coal, oil in ground for climate's sake (study)

The Middle East must leave 40 percent of its oil reserves in the ground, and China, the US and Russia most of their coal if global warming is to be curbed, researchers said Jan. 7.
    
Globally, a third of oil, half of gas and over 80 percent of coal reserves must be left untouched until 2050, according to a novel breakdown of "unburnable" fossil-fuel stocks published in the journal Nature.

     
This is the sole way to meet the UN target of limiting warming to 2.0 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) over pre-Industrial Revolution levels, said co-author Christophe McGlade of University College London.
     
"Policymakers must realise that their instincts to completely use the fossil fuels within their countries are wholly incompatible with their commitments to the 2 C goal," he warned.
     
The UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change estimates that for a good chance of meeting the target, further emissions of Earth-warming greenhouse gases must be limited to about 1,000 billion tonnes (gigatonnes).
     
But global fossil fuel reserves, on current estimates, would emit three times this total if used, said the study.
     
UN members are negotiating a global carbon-cutting climate pact to be signed in Paris in December.       
At current rates, emissions are steering the world towards potentially catastrophic warming of 4 C or more, scientists say.
     
"Companies spent over $670 billion (565 billion euros) last year searching for and developing new fossil fuel resources," said McGlade's colleague and co-author Paul Ekins.
     
"They will need to rethink such substantial budgets if policies are implemented to support the 2 C limit, especially as new discoveries cannot lead to increased aggregate production."      

For their project, McGlade and Ekins made a best estimate of quantities and locations of oil, gas and coal resources, and then assessed how much could be safely used, per region, up to 2050.
     
They used two scenarios -- one with "widespread deployment" of carbon capture and storage (CCS) facilities, a technology in its infancy, and one with no CCS.
     
Even if CCS is widely implemented, over 430 billion barrels of oil must be left unburned, the pair said.       
Under this scenario, the Middle East has over half the world's "unburnable" oil -- more than 260 billion barrels or 38 percent of its stock -- equal to about eight years of global production calculated at 2013 levels of 87 million barrels per day.
     
Central and South America must leave 58 billion barrels alone, Canada 39 billion and the former Soviet states 27 billion.
     
About 95 trillion cubic metres (3,354 trillion cubic feet) of gas should remain unburned, the study found -- again the bulk (46 trillion cubic metres) is held in the Middle East and 31 trillion by former Soviet states.
                     
Countries with large stocks of coal, including developing nations that rely heavily on the resource to fuel their fast growth, also face challenges.
     
China and India would have to leave nearly 70 percent of their reserves under a scenario with CCS, and Africa almost 90 percent, according to the findings.
     
Among developed nations, Europe would have to leave 78 percent of its coal and the United States 92 percent.
     
"These results demonstrate that a stark transformation in our understanding of fossil-fuel availability is necessary," said the study.
     
"Although there have previously been fears over the scarcity of fossil fuels, in a climate-constrained world this is no longer a relevant concern: large portions of the reserve base... should not be produced if the temperature rise is to remain below 2 C."      

Experts Michael Jakob and Jerome Hilaire, in an analysis published with the study, said the uneven distribution of "unburnable" reserves highlighted challenges to finding a carbon-cutting pact.
     
"Only a global climate agreement that compensates losers and is perceived as equitable by all participants can impose strict limits on the use of fossil fuels in the long term," they wrote.

 AFP - hurriyetdailynews.com
8/1/15
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Τετάρτη, Ιανουαρίου 07, 2015

Shell to Pay Approximately $83Mln for Niger Delta Oil Spills

Amnesty International and the Centre for Human Rights and Development (CEHRD) has welcomed an offer by oil giant Shell to pay the Nigerian Bodo community 55 million pounds ($83 million) in compensation for its oil spills in the Niger Delta in 2008, according to a statement issued by Amnesty on Wednesday.

On Wednesday, Shell agreed to make an out-of-court settlement of 35 million pounds to 15,600 fishermen and 20 million pounds to the Bodo community for the environmental damage caused by the oil spills, according to the statement.

"While the pay-out is a long awaited victory for the thousands of people who lost their livelihoods in Bodo, it shouldn't have taken six years to get anything close to fair compensation," Amnesty global issues director Audrey Gaughran said in a statement.

Amnesty International and CEHRD have been supporting Nigeria on the spills case since 2008, but court proceedings against the Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria only began in 2011.

"The compensation is a step towards justice for the people of Bodo, but justice will be fully achieved when Shell properly cleans up the heavily polluted creeks and swamps so that those who rely on fishing and farming for their income can begin to rebuild their livelihoods," Styvn Obodoekwe of CEHRD said.

Shell has accepted responsibility for the oil spills occurred in the Niger Delta in August and December 2008 but seriously underestimated the volume of oil split. During three-year long legal battle, the company revealed that some of its pipelines were old, contained "major risk and hazard" and needed to be replaced. According to Amnesty, the company did not act on this knowledge to prevent the oil leaks.

Environmental restoration of the area where the oil spills occurred is possible but may take 25 to 30 years, according to the United Nations Environment Program.

 [sputniknews.com]
7/1/15
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Τετάρτη, Δεκεμβρίου 17, 2014

Romania discovers biggest oil gas deposit in 30 years

Romania discovered a new deposit of crude oil and natural gas, which may be the biggest discovery of its kind in the past 30 years in the south, a Romanian oil company announced Wednesday.

According to OMV Petrom, a subsidiary of the Austrian group OMV, the deposit was discovered at a depth of 2,500 meters in the south of Buzau County.

The estimates obtained from the production tests indicate a potential production per well of 1,200-2,100 boe per day.

The discovery has been made under the onshore exploration partnership signed in 2010 by OMV Petrom and Hunt Oil Company of Romania, the company said, adding that the exploration investment led to this discovery amounts to 5 million euros (6.25 million US dollars).

OMV Petrom is the largest producer of oil and gas in southeastern Europe, with an annual production of crude oil and natural gas of 66 million boe.

 Sources: Xinhua- globaltimes.cn
17/12/14
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  • New oil and gas field discovered in Buzău County. Probably the largest in the last 30 years in Muntenia ...

OMV Petrom in partnership with Hunt Oil Romania found a new oil and gas field in the south of Buzău County. According to a press release, the field was discovered in Perimeter VIII Urziceni Est by drilling the exploration well Padina Nord 1, at a depth of over 2,500 meters at approx. 7 – 12 km away from mature fields, in production for more than 50 years. Estimates from production tests indicate a potential production per well of 1,200 – 2,100 boe per day from two geological layers. The exploration investments that led to this discovery by OMV Petrom and Hunt Oil amount to EUR 5 million.

“It is potentially the largest discovery in the past 30 years, in the Muntenia region. This year, we have made the largest exploration investments since privatization. It is important to continue exploration activities, as 90 percent of fields we are operating are mature ones and reached their production peak years ago. Currently, we supply about 40 percent of Romania’s oil and gas demand”, said Gabriel Selischi, member of OMV Petrom Executive Board, responsible for Exploration and Production.

In the coming period, the two companies will continue testing operations to determine the production potential of the discovery and will be acquiring seismic data in the region to build on this early success. The discovery was made within the onshore exploration partnership closed in 2010 by OMV Petrom and Hunt Oil. The partnership targets the exploration of two onshore perimeters: I Adjud and VIII Urziceni Est, the operator being Hunt Oil.
http://www.romaniajournal.ro/new-oil-and-gas-field-in-buzau-county-probably-the-largest-in-the-last-30-years-in-muntenia/
17/12/14

Σάββατο, Δεκεμβρίου 13, 2014

Boat protest against Canaries oil prospecting

LANZAROTE, Spain: Protesters plunged half-naked into the icy sea and unfurled banners on Saturday (Dec 13) to try to stop oil prospecting near Spain's Canary Islands, a major tourist destination.

Ten boats from the archipelago took protesters eight nautical miles from where Spanish firm Repsol is exploring with a view to possibly drilling off the islands in the Atlantic ocean.
Protesters warn the oil and gas project is a threat to the environment and the tourist industry on which the Canary Islands rely. They say drilling would raise the risk of an oil spill like the Deepwater Horizon disaster that struck at a BP oil prospect in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010.

The government says finding oil could create thousands of jobs and reduce Spain's dependency on energy imports. The country currently imports 80 per cent of its energy. The beaches on the archipelago off northwest Africa are a popular draw for tourists from Britain, France and elsewhere.

Opponents of Repsol's operations are furious at the Spanish government for authorising Repsol to probe below the sea bed 50 kilometres from the islands of Lanzarote and Fuerteventura.

Environmentalists have branded it a threat to dolphins and other local fauna and flora. "I have been a boat owner for 10 years and what they are doing here pains me. I am sick of seeing the sea polluted and destroyed," said Samuel Rocio Garcia, 32, a protester who dived into the water.

On board one of the boats was the leader of the local government from the island of Lanzarote, Pedro San Gines Gutierrez. He said the protest was "a symbolic act of vigilance" to try to monitor the activities of the Rowan Renaissance, the ship Repsol is using to probe below the sea bed.

Spanish authorities last month temporarily impounded a boat of the environmental campaign group Greenpeace after it protested at the Repsol project in the same area. Spain said the crew had defied orders to leave a restricted zone.

On Nov 15, three Spanish navy boats rammed vessels in which Greenpeace activists were approaching the Rowan Renaissance, a video distributed by Greenpeace showed. An Italian protester fell in the water and was injured, Greenpeace said. It said its activists were protesting peacefully.

Τρίτη, Δεκεμβρίου 09, 2014

El Tribunal Superior de Canarias rechaza suspender las prospecciones petrolíferas

Los jueces del Tribunal Superior de Justicia de Canarias rechazaron hoy suspender cautelarmente las prospecciones petrolíferas que se están realizando a 54 kilómetros de la Isla de Fuerteventura y a 62 de la de Lanzarote, en el archipiélago canario.

El Gobierno de Canarias había solicitado al tribunal la "paralización temporal" de los sondeos mientras se resolvía el recurso que presentaron contra la autorización que dio el Ministerio de Industria Repsol, la empresa encargada de las prospecciones.

El Tribunal Supremo ya dio apoyo al real decreto de 2012 del Gobierno conservador de Mariano Rajoy, en el que amparaba las prospecciones de la petrolera.

Contra este decreto, que abría la puerta a los sondeos, se presentaron hasta siete recursos, la mayoría de organizaciones ecologistas, Izquierda Unida y el propio Gobierno Canario. Todos alertaban de los "daños medioambientales" que podían ocasionar estos sondeos.

Las prospecciones de Repsol en Canarias, que comenzaron el pasado 18 de noviembre, llevan tiempo siendo el tema central de las disputas entre el Ejecutivo central y el canario.

Paulino Rivero, presidente del archipiélago, se respalda en el 75% de apoyo de la población, que rechaza las prospecciones que se están realizando.

[sp.ria.ru]
9/12/14
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Δευτέρα, Δεκεμβρίου 08, 2014

Israel's Greatest Ecological Catastrophe Unfolding in Arava Desert

The crude oil spill in the Arava Desert, southern Israel, is 'twice as bad as initially estimated,' according to the Israeli Eilat Ashkelon Pipeline Company....

"The volume of crude oil that spilled into the Arava Desert last week is 60 percent larger than the amount that was originally reported, the company responsible for the pipeline acknowledged on Sunday night," Haaretz, the Israeli news agency reported.
Although the Eilat Ashkelon Pipeline Company (EAPC) initially reported of a spill between one million and 1.5 million liters, it later revised its calculation to three million liters. However, the company reported on Sunday a report issued by the company on Sunday has revealed that some five million liters of crude oil spilled out of the pipeline last Thursday, December 4.

"We were skeptical about the figures provided by the company from the start," a ministry official said on December 8, as cited by Haaretz.

Meanwhile damage control teams have already removed 13,000 tons of polluted soil in order to reduce the impact of the pipeline leak.

The Times of Israel notes that according to weather forecasts heavy rainfall is expected in the region later this week. It has sparked concerns among ministry officials over the possibility of further contamination of the area, including the Gulf of Eilat, home to rare coral reefs, which could be damaged by the leak, the media outlet stresses.

Haaretz notes, however, that dams are being erected in order to prevent the oil flowing into this area.

"It's the biggest ecological disaster Israel has seen. This is because of the material itself, crude oil, which is particularly hard to flush out, and the location of the spill [on the reserve]," Gilad Golub of Israel's Environmental Services Company told Agence France Presse.

The Times of Israel notes that Eilat residents have already filed a lawsuit against the pipeline operators referring to the tremendous environmental damage caused through negligence.

"Mellish is demanding NIS 220 million ($55m) to rehabilitate the environment in coordination with the Environment Minster and the Israel Nature and Parks authority, as well as another NIS 180 million ($45m) for the 48,000 residents of Eilat for damage to their health and discomfort caused by the ecological disaster," the media outlet reports.

More than 80 people on both sides of the Israel-Jordan border have complained about health problems caused by the spill.

[sputniknews.com]
8/12/14
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Πέμπτη, Δεκεμβρίου 04, 2014

Oil pipeline bursts near Israel-Jordan border.(the reason for the spill was under investigation)

An oil pipeline rupture has caused thousands of cubic metres of crude oil to spill into the Arava desert in southern Israel near the border with Jordan, officials said Thursday (Dec 4).The incident took place just north of the Red Sea resort city of Eilat and 500m from the frontier. 

The spill was "a couple of kilometres long", according to an Israeli environment ministry spokeswoman who was unable to give more specific information.

She said it was unclear whether there was any foul play and environmental authorities would open an investigation. "They have forces on the ground that prevented it from spreading to Jordan," she added.
The leak involved a 245km pipeline carrying crude oil from the southern port city of Ashkelon on Israel's Mediterranean coast to Eilat. 

Ronen Moshe, spokesman for the Eilat Ashkelon Pipeline Company (EAPC), said the spill happened at 12.45 am on Thursday in a new section of the pipeline.
"The leak has been stopped," he said, adding that the reason for the spill was under investigation. "There are dozens of people in the field taking care of the aftermath," he said, indicating there had been no impact on supply. According to the company's website, the EAPC was founded in 1968 and serves as a land bridge for transporting crude oil between the Red Sea and the Mediterranean.

Δευτέρα, Δεκεμβρίου 01, 2014

Eco Global News - GEO Flash News - (December 2014 -a)

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Jorge Rodríguez, viceconsejero del Gobierno de Canarias, denuncia en declaraciones a Sputnik que las prospecciones que Repsol inició hoy a 54 kilómetros de la isla de Fuerteventura y a 62 kilómetros de la de Lanzarote "no traerán ningún beneficio a las islas Canarias, ni siquiera en el caso de que estos sondeos tengan éxito".......................Canarias dice que las prospecciones petrolíferas no traerán ningún beneficio a las islas

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(November 2014 -b)

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(November 2014 -a)

Πέμπτη, Νοεμβρίου 27, 2014

Oil prices sink as OPEC rejects output cut

Oil prices sunk to fresh four-year lows on Thursday, with New York crude plunging below $70 a barrel, after OPEC decided against cutting output despite a huge oversupply in world markets.
At about 16:10 GMT, West Texas Intermediate for January delivery struck $69.11 per barrel -- last seen on May 25, 2010. Brent North Sea crude for January hit $72.74, a level last witnessed on July 7, 2010.
Asked whether the oil OPEC had decided not to reduce production, Saudi Arabian Oil Minister Ali al-Naimi told reporters in Vienna: “That is right.”

He was speaking after a five hour meeting of the producer group broke up.
Kuwait’s Oil Minister Ali Saleh al-Omair confirmed the decision, saying there will bot “no change” in OPEC’s oil output.
Oil prices have fallen by more than a third since June as increasing production in North America from shale oil has overwhelmed demand at a time of sluggish global economic growth.
The cartel, whose largest producer and exporter is Saudi Arabia, will meet again in June next year, said an OPEC delegate.
Tariq Zahir, analyst at Tyche Capital Advisors in New York, said and the slide in U.S. crude could continue below $65 a barrel in coming weeks, a factor that may start to challenge the economics of North American shale oil production.

“I really think we will start getting into a price war,” Zahir said. “I think you would be a little crazy to try to pick a bottom here. I expect to see a bounce but any bounce will be sold into.”

He added trading volumes were reasonably strong on Thursday despite many U.S. traders being off for the Thanksgiving holiday.

Oil analysts said the OPEC decision left the oil market vulnerable to much bigger falls as abundant supply of high quality, light crude oil floods world markets, much of it from shale oil in North America.

“Saudi Arabia and OPEC will have to live with a prolonged period of low prices for any dent in U.S.-shale or production levels to happen,” said Harry Tchilinguirian, senior strategist at BNP Paribas in London.


[english.alarabiya.net with Reuters]
27/11/14

Τετάρτη, Νοεμβρίου 19, 2014

US Senate fails to approve Keystone XL pipeline. (just one vote short of the 60 needed)

The U.S. Senate on Tuesday failed to pass legislation approving construction of the controversial Keystone XL pipeline after the Republican-controlled House approved the same bill last week.
The Democratic-led Senate voted 59 to 41 to defeat the legislation that would bring Canada's oil sands to refineries in the United States, just one vote short of the 60 needed for passage in the 100-member chamber.


The 7-billion-U.S. dollar Keystone XL project is proposed to go from Canada through the U.S. State of Montana and South Dakota to Nebraska, where it would connect with existing pipelines to carry more than 800,000 barrels of crude oil a day to refineries along the U.S. Gulf Coast.

The project has been delayed for years as critics say it could worsen climate change by enabling further growth from the oil sands, which create higher greenhouse gas emissions than some other forms of production. But Republicans insist that it will create jobs and enhance U.S. energy security.

The State Department said in April that it will provide more time for relative federal agencies to review the Keystone XL pipeline project, "based on the uncertainty created by the on-going litigation in the Nebraska Supreme Court which could ultimately affect the pipeline route in that state".

U.S. President Barack Obama also said last week that lawmakers should not "short-circuit" the federal review of the pipeline that is already underway. The Nebraska Supreme Court is expected to issue a verdict on the route of the pipeline by the end of this year, according to local media.

The Senate is likely to advance the Keystone XL pipeline legislation again next January, when Republicans take over the majority in the upper chamber. But it's unclear whether Obama will veto the bill if the Republican-controlled both chambers approve the legislation. Analysts said the controversial pipeline has become a potent symbol of energy and environmental policy to serve both sides as a political tool.  

  Xinhua - china.org.cn 
 19/11/14
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Related:

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