Energy executives say that, despite low oil prices, they see a robust year ahead in 2015. In fact, more than half of 100 U.S. oil and gas chief financial officers (CFO) surveyed by BDO USA foresee growth in mergers and acquisitions (M&A) -- up 30 percent over those surveyed last year.
California is facing one of the worst droughts in their history, causing a State of Emergency that has been in place since January 2014. Nearly a year ago, Governor Jerry Brown asked residents to reduce their water use by 20 percent.
Water has made history in many ways. Settlements have traditionally formed around sources of clean water, and it wasn't until fresh water could be transported to all areas of the world that populations really flourished. But those blossoming populations may have overextended their resources.
Oil prices plummeted late in 2014, but despite this, robust merger and acquisition activity (M&A) in the first 10 months of last year drove an increase in the total transaction value for global upstream oil and gas M&A deals in 2014 -- up 23 percent to $173 billion, according to an analysis from IHS.
Recent growth in the 30-year-old small and medium wind turbine (SMWT) market is being attributed to state and federal incentives in the United Kingdom, Italy and the United States. That is according to Navigant Research who says that the industry is maturing due, in part to feed-in tariff policies in the United Kingdom and growing global demand for distributed generation.
Indiana Michigan Power (I&M) is not walking away from coal but the utility is steadily increasing the amount of wind power in its energy mix. Completion of the Headwaters Wind Farm in Randolph County means the utility will be able to reduce its coal use from 59.6 percent to 49.7 percent, a healthy amount, when it opens this year.
Responding to concerns about delays of coal deliveries to utilities during last year's unusually cold winter, the Surface Transportation Board (STB) has ordered BNSF Railway Company (BNSF) to provide a contingency plan for how it would handle any delivery delays in the future.
The start of the New Year is always an exciting time, especially when you have goals to achieve or milestones to celebrate. It's no different for utilities, many of which are ringing in the New Year on a high note.
The 220 megawatt natural gas fired power plant, Port Westward Unit 2, is a highly efficient facility designed for maximum flexibility to help meet real-time fluctuations in customer demand and integrate variable renewable resources. The plant is comprised of 12, 25,000 horsepower reciprocating engines, which are the first of their size in the country to run entirely on natural gas.
Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) has big plans for new technology in 2015 that will help transform utilities into more predictive and proactive operators and aid in providing detailed inspections, often in less time with greater accuracy and precision than traditional methods.
Starting off the New Year right, Xcel Energy has filed a plan that will more than double its renewable energy portfolio through a diverse energy mix and achieve nation-leading carbon emission reductions. The 2016-2030 Upper Midwest Integrated Resource Plan, filed with the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission, is driven by aggressive reductions in carbon emissions from 2005 levels -- a 30 percent reduction by 2020 and a 40 percent reduction by 2030 -- to meet expected federal carbon requirements.
California may get the spotlight for its renewable energy and related mandates, alternative energy jobs and other achievements, but other states are making their mark too. Pennsylvania has become a clean energy leader, according to a report from The Pew Charitable Trusts.
Communities which have passed laws banning or delaying hydraulic fracturing -- fracking -- have found oil and gas companies to be very tough opponents. In at least some instances, municipalities that passed no-fracking ordinances are being sued.
While the drop in oil and natural gas prices has alarmed many inside and outside the industry, heating oil customers in New Jersey and elsewhere are probably feeling a little warmer thanks to a corresponding reduction in their costs.
Early last week FierceEnergy reported that Southwestern Energy was defying industry trends by continuing to produce natural gas and invest in oil and gas assets and projects. In yet another surprising move, the company announced plans this week to up its capital spending for 2015.
Solar energy continues to make significant inroads across the country, as evidenced by the joint findings of GTM Research and the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), with falling prices and rapid industry growth being attributed to smart, effective public policies that allow consumers to choose renewable energy.
The Department of the Interior (DOI) has released a draft proposed federal regulation by the Office of Natural Resources Revenue (ONRR) governing the valuation of federal oil and gas, and federal and American Indian coal resources, as well as expanded guidance on the production of coal on public lands issued by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM).
The New York Power Authority (NYPA) will have two percent more money in its operating budget next year to help sustain the transformation that the state's power system has undergone toward becoming more intelligent, reliable and flexible.
XTO Energy has been fined for a Clean Water Act violation and will also will pay for restoration of eight locations harmed by unauthorized dumping of dirt, rocks and other fill material in wetlands and streams in West Virginia.
It's a natural reaction for oil and gas companies when prices are low: reconsider future projects or pull up stakes for the time being and wait for the market to stabilize. Southwestern Energy appears to have a completely different idea.