Regulation ///

Granholm confirmed to lead agency key to Biden’s climate goals

Jennifer Granholm was confirmed as Secretary of Energy, putting the former Michigan Governor at the head of agency that will play a key role in implementing President Joe Biden’s ambitious climate agenda.

Keystone XL’s demise shifts crude oil shipments to railways

Without Keystone XL, rail will become a more important way for Canadian oil to reach U.S. Gulf Coast refineries, which need the heavy crude to replace declining supplies from Mexico and Venezuela. And more rail traffic means greater derailment risk.

Biden’s Interior nominee on fossil fuels: “the Earth is here to provide for us”

Deb Haaland’s assurances during her nomination hearing appeared to provide little comfort to Senate Republicans, who argued that the Democratic lawmaker’s criticism of fracing, support for pipeline protesters and endorsement of the Green New Deal make her unfit for a job that includes overseeing energy development on federal land.

Biden to mend fences with Trudeau over Keystone XL, other U.S.-Canada trade issues

After four years of bruising trade battles with Donald Trump, the Biden administration already has canceled a permit for TC Energy Corp.’s Keystone XL oil pipeline and threatened new “Buy American” provisions for government procurement contracts.

Biden interior pick Haaland’s fossil fuel stance draws GOP opposition

The Senate ultimately is still expected to confirm Haaland, but the slim control Democrats have means Haaland needs every vote she can get. Joe Manchin, the West Virginia Democrat who is chairman of the committee considering her nomination, threw into doubt the fate of another Biden nominee last week.

Nigeria blocks Shell’s bank accounts over oil pipeline dispute

A Nigerian court restricted Royal Dutch Shell Plc’s access to its bank accounts in the West African country amid a legal dispute with a local oil producer over a pipeline deal six years ago.

Angola to allow oil and gas drilling in some nature preservation zones

Angolan lawmakers revoked a ban on exploration for crude and natural gas in protected natural reserves, including the Kassanje Basin and the wildlife-rich Okavango River Basin.

Texas energy commissioner says grid spending placed green politics over reliability

Texas Railroad Commissioner Wayne Christian says recent winter storms would not have had such devastating consequences had it not been for decades of poor policy decisions prioritizing unreliable renewable energy sources at the expense of reliable electricity — something Texans now know is essential to everyday life.

Mexico plans tax breaks for Pemex among limited fiscal aid options

Lowering Mexico's tax demands on Pemex, its biggest taxpayer, could help the oil giant reorder its finances as it struggles with a $110.3 billion debt load, sinking production, and some of the highest tax obligations of any oil company in the world.

Texas rattles gas markets by limiting out-of-state sales during blackouts

Texas Governor Greg Abbott told a media briefing on Feb. 17 that he was banning gas from leaving the state through Feb. 21 to ensure in-state power generators had ample supplies. Abbott said he was forced to act as millions of Texans remain without power for a third day amid frigid temperatures, with no clear timeline for restoring service.

Iran calls U.S. oil tanker seizure an ‘act of piracy’

Iran said an attempt by the U.S. government to seize 2 million barrels of oil aboard a Greek-owned tanker was “an act of piracy,” as tensions between Washington and the Islamic Republic show little sign of easing under Joe Biden’s presidency.

Biden and his climate team disparage workers as part of their fossil fuel rhetoric

Vice President Kamala Harris drew derision on social media after she told a West Virginia television station that people could be put to work reclaiming abandoned “land mines.” A day earlier, climate envoy John Kerry said during a White House briefing that displaced laborers face “better choices” making solar panels and installing wind turbines.

Texas prioritizes natural gas to electricity plants amid record winter storms

The Texas Railroad Commission is taking action to prioritize natural gas supplies to support electricity generation, as the state faces multiple days of record cold temperatures.

Canada’s Trudeau rejects a NAFTA challenge to Keystone XL shutdown

Canadian Trade Minister Mary Ng said she is focusing her efforts with the new Biden administration on mutual U.S.-Canada interests despite early policy hiccups that risk further fracturing ties between the two nations, whose commercial relationship is worth $725 billion a year.

Regulators crack down on Texas shale gas flaring

Texas’s energy regulator is taking an uncharacteristically critical approach toward burning off excess natural gas, a sign that growing pressure from environmentalists and investors to curb the controversial practice is paying off.

Net zero regulation: Russia will replace all the U.S. oil Biden wants to ban

Investors are betting that Russian oil giants such as Lukoil, Rosneft and Tatneft will rally as they mop up market share from rivals in the U.S. and and other countries seeking to switch to clean energy.

Equinor wins decade-long court fight over Nigeria oil profits

Equinor ASA said the Nigerian Supreme Court overturned a ruling that had threatened to divert 1.5% of the company’s profits from one of the country’s largest oil fields to a former consultant.

Canada may seek U.S. payback via NAFTA after Biden cancels Keystone XL

To “retroactively remove regulatory approval on the basis of which an investment was made is, in my view, a slam dunk case of a claim for damages through NAFTA under the investor protection provisions,” Alberta Premier Jason Kenney said on Tuesday.

U.S. signals Biden’s tough stance on Iran with new oil seizure attempt

The Department of Justice filed a case in a U.S. district court, seeking to seize the cargo on the Greek-owned Achilleas tanker. The U.S. alleges that Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and the IRGC-Qods Force covertly shipped the oil abroad.

Oxy teams with Macquarie to deliver world’s first carbon-neutral oil from Permian basin to India

The transaction between Oxy and India's Reliance Industries is the energy industry’s first major petroleum shipment for which greenhouse gas emissions associated with the entire crude lifecycle, well head through combustion of end products, have been offset.