A recent survey of Tokyo Bay by the organizers of the 2020 Olympics found the presence of E. coli bacteria to be up to four times greater than the allowable level on one out of 12 days in August. Officials are concerned about water quality in the bay, which will be the site for the swimming portion of the Olympic triathlon, and plan to install triple-layer underwater screens.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., says that an agreement between the House and the Trump administration on the US-Mexico-Canada Agreement is imminent and that she hopes the House approves the trade deal this year. Discussions with US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer are "in a good place" regarding drug pricing, labor rights, environmental protection and enforcement, Pelosi says.
The oil and natural gas industry does not fear the rise of electric vehicles because gasoline automobiles only account for 25 million barrels of the roughly 100 million of daily global oil consumption, according to Pioneer Natural Resources CEO Scott Sheffield. Frank Macchiarola, vice president of downstream and industry operations at the American Petroleum Institute, agrees with Sheffield, noting that energy transitions take long periods of time and gas will be needed to generate much of the electricity used to charge electric vehicles.
US shale producers demonstrated "impressive execution" this year as they managed to increase oil production at a modest 2% rate while spending less on drilling and completions, Rystad Energy said. "U.S. shale companies are well-positioned to see an oil increase of about nine percent in the fourth quarter this year relative to the same period last year, growing 2019 volumes by approximately 16 percent over 2018," said Rystad's Veronika Akulinitseva.
US crude stockpiles gained 2.2 million barrels last week, exceeding analyst forecasts for a one-million-barrel increase, the Energy Information Administration reported. Gasoline supplies also climbed by 1.9 million barrels, while distillate inventories were down by 2.5 million barrels.
US oil and natural gas drillers plan to lower capital budgets for a second consecutive year in 2020, with spending expected to be about $4 billion below 2019 levels, according to Cowen & Co. More discipline should contribute to a healthier energy sector in the long run, but the short-term impact likely will be job cuts and an economic slowdown in Texas.
Callon Petroleum has modified its acquisition offer for rival Carrizo Oil and Gas in an attempt to win shareholder support for the merger, and has pushed back a shareholder vote to Dec. 20. Under the new terms, Carrizo shareholders will receive 1.75 Callon shares for each share held, leaving Callon shareholders with 58% control of the combined company.
The State-Tribal Relations Committee, which acts as a liaison with tribes in Montana, is asking the state's congressional delegation to push back the deadline for public comments on the Keystone XL pipeline's draft supplemental environmental impact statement. The lawmakers cited a "lack of formal consultation with tribal governments" and called for a "more rigorous and meaningful public comment process."
Offshore wind is expected to become a $1 trillion industry within 20 years and while states are doing everything possible to ensure the US' success, the federal government must also do its part by providing regulatory stability. "Offshore wind currently provides just 0.3% of global power generation, but its potential is vast," says Dr. Fatih Birol, the IEA's executive director. "More and more of that potential is coming within reach, but much work remains to be done by governments and industry for it to become a mainstay of clean energy transitions."
Equinor is developing the 816-megawatt Empire Wind project off the coast of New York, has a lease in Massachusetts and is scouting opportunities for renewables "all the way from the Northeast to Texas," says Equinor's Michael Wheeler. Equinor is interested in offshore wind projects, as well as land-based wind ones and floating offshore wind in California, he says.
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