South Korea is set to receive liquefied natural gas from the US for the first time as part of a 20-year sales and purchase agreement between US LNG exporter Cheniere Energy and Korea Gas that began over the weekend. Under the deal, signed in January 2012, Cheniere will supply about 10% of South Korea's total yearly demand.
North Dakota has seen an increase in wind and transmission projects under the wind energy Production Tax Credit and more wind-related investments will likely take place before the credit expires in 2020, said state Rep. Mike Brandenburg. NextEra Energy is seeking approval for its Emmons-Logan Wind Energy Center in the state, which could feature up to 133 turbines and has a power purchase agreement with an electrical cooperative in Minnesota.
The US Conference of Mayors passed resolutions aimed at improving the climate during a three-day summit that ended yesterday. The bipartisan group approved a pledge to support the transitions of cities to 100% renewable energy by 2035, and many pledged to live by the spirit of the Paris climate agreement despite the federal government's retreat from it.
Several reports, from the US Environmental Agency to the International Energy Agency to industry analysts, expect the electric vehicle market to substantially grow, albeit slowly over time. However, to drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions, the transportation sector must make and sell more EVs in a faster time frame, writes Ken Silverstein.
Cheniere Energy unveiled plans to expand its Sabine Pass terminal in Louisiana with the acquisitions of additional acres and build more, potentially smaller liquefied natural gas plants even though the global market is awash in supply. "Our goal is to leverage the existing infrastructure to build whatever the next round requires," Cheniere Director, President and CEO Jack Fusco said.
The port of Corpus Christi in Texas is on track to become the primary exporting hub in the US as crude exporters increasingly favor it as an alternative to the congested Houston Ship Channel. Corpus Christi is in the midst of an expansion that could eventually increase its daily crude export capacity from 960,000 barrels now to 2.8 million barrels, which compares with Houston's current 1.7-million-barrel export capacity.
Oil prices rose for the fourth consecutive day on Tuesday fueled by expectations that US crude stockpiles likely dropped by 2.25 million barrels last week. August West Texas Intermediate gained 56 cents to trade at $43.94 per barrel while Brent for August delivery rose 64 cents to $46.47.
The Texas Legislature has increased the Texas Railroad Commission's biennial budget from $176.5 million to $256.1 million, most of which will benefit the agency's well-plugging, oilfield cleanup and pipeline safety programs. The funding boost comes after years of underfunding and a shortage of inspectors responsible for monitoring wells.
BP is investing tens of billions of dollars in deepwater projects in the US Gulf of Mexico, hoping to eventually reduce the costs of offshore oil production by 50% or more at a time when competitors shun offshore investments. BP says its $9 billion Mad Dog Phase 2 would turn a profit even with $40-a-barrel oil, in stark contrast with the $100-per-barrel minimum oil price BP needed for new Gulf projects in 2013.
A University of Alberta study has found that hydraulic fracturing and saltwater disposal in North America have little to no impact on seismic events. Geophysicist Mirko van der Baan, who led the study, says the majority of fracking operations are "perfectly safe," although unanswered questions remain, such as why seismicity changes in some areas because of fracking operations.
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