• 4 injured in fire at bio-diesel plant in Geismar

    Updated: 16 hr ago

    GEISMAR, La. (AP) — Authorities say four people are being treated for injuries after a fire erupted at a bio-diesel plant in Ascension Parish. Multiple news outlet reports the fire happened late Thursday night at the Renewable Energy Group plant on Louisiana Highway 30 in Geismar (GYS'-mahr). Ascension Parish officials say injuries are non-life threatening. The cause of the fire remains under investigation. Two workers were injured in a fire at the plant in April.

  • Officials plan to take state park in Vermont off the grid

    Updated: 17 hr ago

    DORSET, Vt. (AP) — The Vermont Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation and Green Mountain Power are planning to take the Emerald Lake State Park in Dorset off the grid. The Rutland Herald reports (http://bit.ly/1fYMjx8 ) the project aims to turn the park into an "ePark" powered primarily by solar energy. The plan is to replace an existing power line with solar panels that can generate up to 10 megawatts of electricity. The solar generation would be supplemented by new batteries that store electricity and allow power to be available regardless of whether the sun is shining. Installation is expected to start in the spring. The park will remain open through October.

  • Fired regulator: Brown pushed to waive oil safeguards.

    Updated: 17 hr ago

    SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — California's top oil and gas regulators repeatedly warned Gov. Jerry Brown's senior aides in 2011 that the governor's orders to override key safeguards in granting oil industry permits would violate state and federal laws protecting the state's groundwater from contamination, one of the former officials has testified. Brown fired the regulators on Nov. 3, 2011, one day after what the fired official says was a final order from the governor to bypass safety provisions of the federal Safe Drinking Water Act in granting permits to oil companies for oilfield injection wells. Brown later boasted publicly that the dismissals led to a speed-up of oilfield permitting.

  • Germany's BASF, Russia's Gazprom revive gas asset swap

    Updated: 17 hr ago

    BERLIN (AP) — Germany's BASF SE is reviving a planned asset swap with Russian gas company Gazprom that was called off last December. BASF said Friday that the two companies have agreed to complete the asset swap by the end of this year. It will be financially retroactive to April 2013. The swap had already received European Commission clearance at the end of that year. The swap will see BASF subsidiary Wintershall transfer its share in a jointly operated natural gas trading and storage business to Gazprom. In addition, Gazprom will get a 50 percent share in the activities of a unit that explores for and produces oil and gas in southern areas of the North Sea. In return, Gazprom and Wintershall will develop two additio

  • California governor's highway plan includes $65 driver fee

    Updated: 19 hr ago

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — More than two months after calling a special session to address California's transportation funding backlog, Gov. Jerry Brown has begun circulating a list of administration proposals on how to pay for it, including a $65 annual fee for drivers and increases in the diesel and gas taxes tied to inflation. A one-page "transportation package" released Thursday calls for $3.6 billion a year for repairs to California's crumbling transportation infrastructure. The $65 charge would generate $2 billion a year, while $500 million would come from fees charged to polluters and $100 million from so-called "efficiencies" at Caltrans, which the independent state legislative analyst has said is overstaffed.

  • Enel dedicates Origin wind farm in Oklahoma as others prepare to come online

    By Paul Monies Business Writer pmonies@oklahoman.com | Published: Fri, Sep 4, 2015

    A 150-megawatt project, owned by Enel Green Power North America Inc., was dedicated Wednesday with a reception and tour of the 18,000-acre site by federal, Oklahoma and tribal officials.

  • Lowest Labor Day gas prices since 2004 offer Oklahomans rare gift

    By Adam Wilmoth Energy Editor awilmoth@oklahoman.com | Published: Fri, Sep 4, 2015

    The average price of a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline Thursday in Oklahoma City was about $2.26, down 13 cents over the past week, down 20 cents over the past month and $1.01 less than one year ago, according to AAA’s fuelgaugereport.com.


    Published: Fri, Sep 4, 2015

    Oklahoma crude oil prices as of 5 p.m. Thursday: Oklahoma Sweet: Sunoco Inc. — $43.25 Oklahoma Sour: Sunoco Inc. — $31.25 Oklahoma oil and gas drilling activity posted Aug. 20: COMPLETION Custer: Encino Operating LLC; Black Bear No. 1-13H Well; SW/4 NW/4 NE/4 NE/4 (BHL) of 13-15N-18W; 143 barrels oil per day, 132,000 cu-ft gas per day; TD 13,540. Dewey: Mewbourne Oil Co.; Prostar 21 MD No. 2HCG Well; SW/4 NE/4 NW/4 NW/4 (BHL) of 21-16N-17W; 157 barrels oil per day, 212,000 cu-ft gas per day; TD 13,280. Hughes: Petroquest Energy LLC; Ethel No. 1-7H Well; NE/4 NE/4 NE/4 NE/4 (SL) of 07-07N-11E; 2,015,000 cu-ft gas per day; TD 10,340. Petroquest Energy LLC; Judith No.

  • Plugging in: Oklahoma energy briefs for Sept. 4, 2015

    Published: Fri, Sep 4, 2015

    Plugging in: Oklahoma energy briefs for Sept. 4, 2015

  • Asian stock markets ebb ahead of US jobs report


    SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Asian stock markets were mostly lower Friday as caution prevailed before the release of the monthly U.S. jobs report and the resumption of trading on Chinese stock markets next week. KEEPING SCORE: Japan's Nikkei 225 fell 1.1 percent to 17,976.77 and South Korea's Kospi dropped 0.9 percent to 1,899.20. Hong Kong's Hang Seng shed 0.2 percent to 20,886.89 and Australia's S&P/ASX 200 fell 0.4 percent to 5,007.00. Stock markets in Southeast Asia also were lower. US JOBS: The U.S. government issues the August jobs report on Friday, which could play a big role in whether the Federal Reserve decides to raise interest rates at its Sept. 16-17 meeting.

  • Thousands of gallons of oil spilled in Mississippi River


    COLUMBUS, Ky. (AP) — Part of the Mississippi River was closed as crews investigated an oil spill caused by the collision of two tow boats, the U.S. Coast Guard said Thursday. The collision Wednesday evening near Columbus, Kentucky, damaged at least one barge carrying clarified slurry oil. The cargo tank was ruptured, causing thousands of gallons of oil to spill into the river, the Coast Guard said. No injuries were reported. The river is closed from mile markers 938 to 922, Petty Officer Lora Ratliff said. The barge was carrying approximately 1 million gallons, but the breach was only in one area, affecting just one of its six tanks, Ratliff said. That tank holds 250,000 gallons, and Lt.

  • Effort fails to block PG&E tax break for gas explosion fine


    SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — An effort to block Pacific Gas and Electric Co. from getting a tax break on the $1.6 billion it was fined for the deadly 2010 San Bruno gas explosion has fallen short. State regulators imposed the record-setting penalty in April on the state's largest utility for the explosion that killed eight and destroyed more than three dozen homes in suburban San Francisco. A company spokesman says the costs are tax deductible, but state regulators say the deduction should not be allowed. SB681 by Democratic Sen. Jerry Hill of San Mateo would prevent the company from claiming the $115 million tax break. The measure fell two votes short of the required 27-vote supermajority Thursday.

  • SMEPA will buy power from second Lamar County solar site


    HATTIESBURG, Miss. (AP) — Origis Energy will build an additional 52 megawatts of solar energy capacity in Sumrall, selling the electricity produced there to South Mississippi Electric Power Association. SMEPA announced a letter of intent to buy the power Thursday. Mississippi Power Co. had announced in April that it would buy power from a twin 52 megawatt-facility that Origis, based on the Mediterranean island of Cyprus, plans at the Lamar County site. SMEPA said Origis plans to start selling power to the association before the end of 2016. When the Mississippi Power facility was announced, officials said it would cost $102 million. Origis couldn't immediately be reached for comment Thursday on the cost of the new facility

  • Trio charged with running $54M green-energy Ponzi scheme


    PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Three people were charged Thursday with running a $54 million Ponzi scheme built on promises of a green energy technology that would turn trash into fuel and "carbon-negative" housing developments, neither of which were ever fully developed, federal prosecutors said. Troy Wragg, 34, of Georgia; Amanda Knorr, 32, of Pennsylvania; and Wayde McKelvy, 52, of Colorado were charged with wire and securities fraud and conspiracy. It wasn't immediately clear if they had attorneys who could comment on their behalf. Prosecutors said the trio lied to investors that their "biochar" technology and "carbon-negative" housing in Tennessee made millions, but they had almost no earnings and used the money to repay earlier

  • Judge accepts charges against ex-head of nuclear power firm


    SAO PAULO (AP) — A federal judge Thursday accepted the charges filed by prosecutors against the former head of Eletronuclear, the state-owned company that operates Brazil's two nuclear power plants, for his suspected role in a bribery scandal. Othon Luiz Pinheiro da Silva will face trial for allegedly taking 4.5 million reals ($1.22 million) in bribes from construction companies for contracts involving the construction of the Angra 3 nuclear plant in Rio de Janeiro. Judge Sergio Fernando Moro said in a statement that he also accepted the charges filed against 14 others, including Flavio David Barra, the top energy executive at construction firm Andrade Gutierrez and da Silva's daughter, Ana Cristina Toniolo.

  • Settlement over decade-old Gulf oil leak filed in court


    NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Environmental groups have signed a settlement agreement to resolve their lawsuit against a New Orleans company that has failed to end a decade-old oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico. The agreement was filed Thursday in federal court. Taylor Energy Company announced details of the pact in a news release last week, before it was finalized. The New York-based Waterkeeper Alliance says the company will release more information about its efforts to stop oil from leaking at the site where one of its offshore platforms toppled during Hurricane Ivan in 2004. Taylor Energy also agreed to donate $300,000 to a Louisiana marine research consortium and pay an additional $100,000 for research on the ecological effect

  • The Latest: Mississippi River oil spill not affecting port


    COLUMBUS, Ky. (AP) — The latest on the oil spill along the Mississippi River that caused a section of the waterway to be shut down (all times local): ___ 5:30 p.m. Joe Hogancamp of Bardwell, Kentucky, was putting his 20-foot-long boat into the Mississippi River just downstream from where a collision of two barges sent hundreds of thousands of oil gushing into the mighty waterway. Hogancamp and his two friends were going out onto the river to do some dove hunting, but he said he might refrain from fishing in the area affected by the oil spill. "It might mess up some of the fishing," he said. "I'd say it's going to hurt the environment a little bit. I doubt we'll eat some fish (from the river) for a little w

  • Democratic support piles up for Iran nuclear deal in Senate


    WASHINGTON (AP) — Now a done deal, the Iran nuclear agreement gained critical backing from three more Democratic senators Thursday, boosting White House hopes of blocking a disapproval resolution in the Senate so the president won't have to veto it. Democratic Sens. Cory Booker of New Jersey, Mark Warner of Virginia and Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota announced their support in quick succession for the deal that aims to curb Iran's nuclear program in exchange for wide relief from economic sanctions. The announcement from Booker, in particular, was closely watched because he was under immense pressure from segments of the Jewish community in New Jersey to oppose the deal, and New Jersey's other Democratic senator, Bob Menende

  • Enbridge agrees to keep heavy crude out of Michigan pipeline


    MACKINAW CITY, Mich. (AP) — A company that ships oil through the Great Lakes pledged Thursday to keep heavy crude out of a pipeline in northern Michigan. Enbridge Energy already doesn't transport heavy crude in the Straits of Mackinac. The deal signed with state officials preserves the status quo and requires a 180-day notice if changes are proposed. "Although Enbridge does not and has not used Line 5 for heavy crude, I am pleased with the additional layer of protection this agreement provides to prevent an environmental and economic catastrophe in the Straits," said Dan Wyant, director of the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality. The Straits separate Michigan's two peninsulas where lakes Huron and Michigan co

  • Federal regulators back keeping Colorado coal mine open


    DENVER (AP) — Federal regulators have recommended that a northwestern Colorado coal mine threatened with closure partly over its impact on global warming remain open. The Interior Department's Office of Surface Mining Reclamation Enforcement issued its decision Tuesday, five days before a court-imposed deadline that congressional, state and local lawmakers had urged the office to meet to keep the Colowyo mine operating near Craig. The Interior Department still must decide whether to accept the recommendation to ensure the mine's future, but U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet said Thursday that the review "will help relieve significant anxiety in Moffat and Rio Blanco counties.