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USA | Energy in BC & beyond

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U.S. Keystone Report Relied Heavily on Alberta Govt-Funded Research

John H. Cushman Jr., InsideClimate News, Feb 7, 2014

State Department review used studies funded by Alberta agencies and carried out by Jacobs Consultancy, a subsidiary of a major tar sands developer.

More oil spilled from trains in 2013 than in previous 4 decades, federal data show

Curtis Tate, Bellingham Herald, McClatchy Washington Bureau, January 20, 2014

WASHINGTON — More crude oil was spilled in U.S. rail incidents last year than was spilled in the nearly four decades since the federal government began collecting data on such spills, an analysis of the data shows.

President Obama orders sweeping energy review

Laura Barron-Lopez, The Hill, Jan 9 2014

President Obama on Thursday ordered a sweeping review of energy strategy that will involve departments and agencies across the federal government.

Wall Street Giant Backs Away From Washington Coal Export Project

Oregon Public Broadcasting, Jan 7 2014

A multinational banking giant is backing away from a proposal to build the West Coast’s biggest coal export project near Bellingham, Washington.

Washington coal export project dumped by Goldman Sachs

John Upton, Grist, Jan 8 2013

Goldman Sachs is looking a tad less evil. It has dumped its holdings in a shaky project that would build the Gateway Pacific Terminal near Bellingham, Wash., intended to be the West Coast’s biggest coal export terminal.

Report: How a Mega Project Snafu Could Snarl America’s Gas Exports

Keith Johnson, Foreign Policy, Jan 2 2014

The expansion of the Panama Canal is on hold -- and so is the U.S. dream of sending energy to Asia.

Casselton, N.D. residents flee town after oil train explosion

David Shaffer & Susan Hogan, Star Tribune, Dec 31, 2013

A majority of the 2,300 residents of Casselton, N.D., heeded a warning to leave town Monday after an explosion that produced huge clouds of flames and smoke, according to the Cass County Sheriff’s Office.

Proposal would increase oil tanker traffic

Phuong Le, Associated Press, Chron.com, December 27, 2013

SEATTLE (AP) — The number of oil tankers in Washington state waters could increase almost sevenfold under a proposal by a Canadian pipeline company to expand the amount of crude oil it sends to the Pacific Coast.

More massive tar mats from BP oil spill discovered on Louisiana beaches

Bob Marshall, The Lens (New Orleans), Dec 18, 2013

The 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster was just a month old and BP’s crude oil was still gushing from the Gulf floor when state officials began to grasp the true scope of the insult to Louisiana’s coast: Beaches, estuaries and wetlands would be under assault for decades.

Regulator: ND oil rail shipments expected to spike

James Macpherson, Associated Press December 12, 2013

Regulator: North Dakota oil rail shipments expected to spike to 90 percent of production

U.S. ‘green billionaire’ addresses his motives for working to block Keystone

Alexander Panetta, The Canadian Press, 570News.com, Dec 14, 2013

WASHINGTON – Yes, the influential activist spearheading the fight against the Keystone XL pipeline has made a fortune in oil investments. Yes, he’s invested in a rival pipeline that would compete with Keystone.

Tar Sands Oil Boom Drives Push for A Northern Pipeline

Ed Struzik, Yale Environment 360, 29 Nov 2013

The rapid development of Alberta’s tar sands has spawned a new proposal for a 731-mile pipeline that would transport oil to the British Columbia coast. The project is strongly opposed by conservationists and First Nations leaders, who fear the environmental risks it would bring.

US Energy Independence: Another Pipe Dream, Says Analyst

Andrew Nikiforuk, TheTyee.ca, Dec 7 2013

Top geoscientist spells out startling depletion rates for high-cost shale gas, tight oil wells.

One of Canada's top energy analysts has warned investors and geologists that "the shale revolution" will not meet conventional expectations as a so-called game-changer in energy production.

Obama approves border-crossing fracked gas pipeline used to dilute tar sands

Jenny Uechi, Vancouver Observer, Nov 26 2013

While the fate of the controversial Keystone XL pipeline hangs in balance, the U.S. quietly approved another major border-crossing pipeline proposal by Kinder Morgan last week.  

Obama Approves Major Border-Crossing Fracked Gas Pipeline Used to Dilute Tar Sands

Steve Horn, DeSmogBlog, 26 Nov 2013

Although TransCanada's Keystone XL tar sands pipeline has received the lion's share of media attention, another key border-crossing pipeline benefitting tar sands producers was approved on November 19 by the U.S. State Department.

Rate design wars are the sound of utilities taking residential PV seriously

Imagine walking into your supermarket with a bag of zucchini from your garden and saying that you’d like to trade them straight up for an equal quantity of zucchini next month.

Peter Voser says he regrets Shell’s huge bet on US shale

Guy Chazan, Financial Times, Oct 6 2013

Peter Voser said the failure of Royal Dutch Shell’s huge bet on US shale was a big regret of his time as chief executive of the company.

Official Price of the Enbridge Kalamazoo Spill, A Whopping $1,039,000,000

Desmog Canada, 26 Aug 2013

The largest onshore oil spill in US history - Enbridge's ruptured Line 6B that released nearly 3 million liters of tar sands diluted bitumen into a tributary of the Kalamazoo River in Michigan - finally has an official price tag: $1,039,000,000 USD. That's according to newly disclosed figures released by Enbridge in a Revised Application to expand another one of its pipelines, the Alberta Clipper.

What will it take to catch PG&E's attention?

The Bakersfield Californian, Aug 24 2013

Sept. 9, 2010: A 30-inch PG&E gas pipeline burst in San Bruno, killing eight people, injuring dozens more and destroying 38 homes. In court documents, PG&E first tried to blame the rupture on a city sewer project that allegedly damaged a "state of the art" pipeline. Residents themselves were accused of somehow being negligent.

Why Pushing Alternate Fuels Makes for Bad Public Policy

John DeCicco, Yale Environment 360, 22 Aug 2013

Every U.S. president since Ronald Reagan has backed programs to develop alternative transportation fuels. But there are better ways to foster energy independence and reduce greenhouse gas emissions than using subsidies and mandates to promote politically favored fuels.

Burst Pipeline's Spill Plan Is None of Your Business, Suggests Regulator

Naveena Sadasivam, InsideClimateNews.org, Aug 20, 2013

PHMSA has released ExxonMobil's spill response plan for the ruptured Pegasus pipeline—but most of the crucial elements have been completely redacted.

California attorney general announces $750M refund from Canadian utility Powerex

Dale Kasler, Sacramento Bee, Friday, Aug. 16, 2013

In the biggest refund yet from the California energy crisis, a government-owned Canadian utility today agreed to a $750 million settlement with state officials and the state's largest utilities.

Attorney General Kamala D. Harris Announces $750 Million Settlement Stemming from California Energy Crisis

Press Release, Kamala Harris, California Attorney General, August 16 2013

SAN FRANCISCO -- Attorney General Kamala D. Harris today announced a $750 million settlement with Powerex over claims arising from the 2000-2001 California energy crisis. The vast majority of the settlement money will go to ratepayers of California’s largest utilities.

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