Sen. Michael Bennet, D-Colo., said he will support lifting the ban on crude oil exports if it is part of a broader U.S. energy plan addressing climate change and energy security.
Thirteen states, led by North Dakota, asked US District Judge Ralph Erickson to expand a temporary injunction against the federal water rule to all states. The Environmental Protection Agency and the Army Corps of Engineers were "quick to abandon their uniform applicability concerns in favor of seeking to limit the scope of this Court's ruling," the states wrote in a filing.
Royal Dutch Shell's $70 billion deal with BG Group received approval from the European Commission on Wednesday. The takeover would improve Shell's profitability and resiliency in the face of a sustained period of low oil prices, Shell CEO Ben van Beurden said. The deal is expected to be completed early next year.
US District Judge Denise Casper on Wednesday ordered an "expedited schedule" from the Securities and Exchange Commission for its final rule on how oil, natural gas and mining companies must report payments to foreign governments. The commission's delay of over four years violates the Administrative Procedure Act, Casper ruled.
A bill repealing the ban on crude oil exports could clear a House of Representatives committee, possibly next week, three lobbyists familiar with the matter said. Louis Finkel, executive vice president for government affairs at the American Petroleum Institute, said exports are increasingly gaining "bipartisan support."
Schlumberger on Wednesday said it acquired synthetic diamond maker Novatek Inc. and Novatek IP in a move that is expected to help Schlumberger's drilling capabilities. The company did not disclose the cost of the acquisition.
India is planning to make nearly 70 oil and gas fields available for auction through a revenue-sharing model and dual license for conventional and unconventional exploration. The policy changes are designed to encourage private and foreign interest, though the fields are not considered economical.
The industrial real estate sector in North American shale plays has not seen any decreases in costs despite a slump in oil prices, as the sector still sees demand surpass supply, said Mike Elliott, managing principal at Energy Real Estate Solutions. The improvement in the US economy has led to several developers' return to primary and secondary markets, resulting in fewer developers operating in shale plays, Elliott said. He added that for each energy merger and acquisition activity, "we see a surge in real estate activity."
Despite protests and a decline in oil prices, hydraulic fracturing remains profitable for drillers that use advanced technologies, such as automation, computer programs and dissolvable plugs. For instance, through supervisory control and data acquisition systems that allow real-time and remote data collection, WPX Energy's operational efficiency in oilfields has improved significantly, said Kent Hejl, completion manager at the company.
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