Regulation

Editor’s Notebook: Trouble in the Heartland

(P&GJ) — It seems that even CO2 pipelines — a centerpiece of the Biden administration’s net zero greenhouse gas reductions policy — can’t catch a break when it comes to getting out of the starting block where permitting and public opinion are concerned.

INGAA Publishes 2023 Climate Report

(P&GJ) — The Interstate Natural Gas Association of America (INGAA) has published its second Climate Report, highlighting member company progress in delivering reliable energy while reducing emissions.

Riposte Capital Pushes for Board Overhaul at Energy Producer SilverBow

One of SilverBow Resources Inc.'s largest investors is pushing the U.S. oil and gas producer to revamp its board to address governance concerns and boost its lagging performance, according to a letter reviewed by Reuters on Thursday.

Trans Mountain Faces Regulatory Hearing on Pipeline Variance Request

The Canada Energy Regulator (CER) has ordered the company building the Trans Mountain oil pipeline expansion (TMX) to appear at an oral hearing on Monday, as the regulator weighs whether to approve a variance request from the project.

Court of Appeals Affirms Dismissal of Lawsuit by Dakota Access Pipeline Protesters

A recent ruling by a three-judge panel from the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has upheld the decision made by a federal judge in 2021 to dismiss a legal action brought forth by demonstrators opposing the Dakota Access Pipeline.

INGAA Releases Key Initiatives Product to Boost Safety with Voluntary Efforts

(P&GJ) — The Interstate Natural Gas Association of America (INGAA) and its member companies have released their “Integrity Management – Continuous Improvement (IMCI) 2.0” program work products. The IMCI program is a series of voluntary initiatives to bolster the industry’s safety efforts.

FERC Approves Full Operations Restart for Freeport LNG in Texas

U.S. liquefied natural gas (LNG) company Freeport LNG received approval to return part of its export plant in Texas to full operation, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) said on Wednesday.

Geopolitical Realities Dim the Prospects for an Oil Embargo on Israel Amidst Middle East Tensions

The conflict has led many analysts, oil market watchers and politicians to draw parallels with the 1973 OPEC embargo, when Arab oil producers cut off oil exports to several allies of Israel, including the United States and Britain, following the Israeli-Arab war that year.

US Paves the Way for a New Era in Hydrogen: Federal Funding Boosts Clean Hydrogen Initiatives

The Biden administration strengthened its support for clean hydrogen back in October by funding a range of proposed development hubs spread across the United States.

Wolf Carbon Solutions Initiates Withdrawal of Carbon Pipeline Application in Illinois

Wolf Carbon Solutions has moved to withdraw its permit application in Illinois to build a carbon capture pipeline that would transport as much as 12 million tons of carbon dioxide annually to a storage site in the state, according to a company filing in the state regulatory commission docket.

TC Energy Receives FERC Approval for Virginia Reliability Project

Columbia Gas Transmission’s Virginia Reliability Project (VRP) is an expansion project that would replace two existing segments of the pipeline system to continue reliable and abundant natural gas supply.

Endesa to Safeguard LNG-Focused Dividend Despite $570 Million Court Order

Spanish power utility Endesa said on Monday it plans to shield its dividend payment from the impact of a court order to pay $570 million following a price review of a long-term LNG supply contract.

Texas Men Convicted in Attempted Sale of Iranian Petroleum, Face 45 Years in Prison

A U.S. jury has convicted two Texas men of trying to sell Iranian petroleum in violation of sanctions imposed by Washington and of conspiracy to commit money laundering, the Justice Department said on Friday.

ConocoPhillips' $8 Billion Willow Project Approvals Upheld by US Judge

A federal judge in Alaska upheld U.S. approvals for ConocoPhillips’ multibillion-dollar Willow oil and gas drilling project in the state’s Arctic on Nov. 9, rejecting environmental and indigenous groups' concerns that the project poses too large of a climate threat.

US Coast Guard Heads Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill Cleanup After Underwater Pipeline Leak

The U.S. Coast Guard was leading an oil spill clean-up in the Gulf of Mexico on Friday, partnering with local and federal agencies and companies after a Main Pass Oil Gathering Co. (MPOG) underwater pipeline began leaking.

Illinois Regulators Slash Gas Utility Rate Hikes and Halt Controversial Pipe-Replacement Program

(P&GJ) — In a sweeping rebuff of four different utilities, Illinois regulators have sharply curtailed record rate hikes proposed for more than 4 million gas customers across the state, while also blocking most spending on a controversial pipe-replacement program that has fueled a heating affordability crisis for consumers in recent years.

US Hydrogen Tax Credit Rule Faces 2024 Delay Amid Disputes Over Design

The Biden administration could push the release of a highly anticipated rule guiding the use of clean hydrogen tax credits into next year as Treasury officials struggle to resolve disputes between environmentalists and the industry over how "green" to make the incentive, according to two sources familiar with the administration's plans.

Texas Regulator Assesses Over $1 Million in Fines for Oil, Gas Operators

(P&GJ) — The Railroad Commission of Texas assessed $1,063,647 in fines involving 342 enforcement dockets against operators and businesses at the Commissioners’ Conference on Nov. 15.

Russian Pipelines Facing Significant Pressure from Tightening Sanctions

(P&GJ) — The Russian pipelines’ sector is experiencing serious pressure amid ever tightening sanctions and the ever-growing isolation of the country in the international arena. Historically, pipelines have been a strategic asset in Russia, with the largest volume of cargo coming in the form of crude oil and natural gas.

Proposed PHMSA Leak Detection Changes Run into Opposition

(P&GJ) — While the CEQ’s proposed NEPA changes would affect how all federal agencies review potential GHG emissions for various industry energy construction projects, the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) wants to restrict methane emissions for already-installed pipelines, as well as new ones.

Biden Wants to Count Emissions Downstream of Pipeline Projects

(P&GJ) — The Biden administration announced its latest effort to throw a wrench in pipeline construction. The Biden Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) wants to roll back Trump administration pro-pipeline changes to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).

Emerging Threats of Climate Change, Vandalism

(P&GJ) — Pipeline integrity management systems (PIMS) are now in common practice, driven by the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) requirements in the U.S. In June 2022, PHMSA updated an advisory bulletin on earth movement and geohazards, to monitor changing weather patterns and consider the risk posed by climate change.

Editor’s Notebook: It Could Have Been Worse, Revisited

(P&GJ) — With its approval of the Willow Project on the North Slope Alaska early this year, along with its continued of drilling permits on federal lands, the Biden administration has begun to show at least some desire to play ball where oil projects are involved, much to the chagrin of the anti-fossil fuel forces.

DOE Rejects Repsol's Bid to Reopen Approval for Venture Global LNG Export Plant

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) on Tuesday rejected for a second time oil major Repsol SA's request to reopen regulators' approval of Venture Global LNG's Calcasieu Pass export plant in Louisiana.

Pipeline Operators Increase Quality Checks Over Concerns of Metal Contamination in Texas Shale Oil

U.S. oil pipeline and export terminal operators are stepping up quality checks after finding an out-of-specification cargo that raised worries of excess metals contaminating Texas shale oil, operators and sources said.

Internal Corrosion’s Threat to Pipeline Integrity

(P&GJ) — Pipeline integrity is critical for ensuring the safe transportation of oil and gas products. Internal corrosion is an element of pipeline integrity that poses a significant concern for operators. According to PHMSA, “internal corrosion historically accounts for approximately 60% of all pipeline incidents caused by corrosion in transmission and gathering pipelines.”

U.S. Court Invalidates Sempra's Port Arthur LNG Permit Over Emission Limits

A U.S. court has removed an emissions permit for Sempra's Port Arthur LNG export terminal in Texas, potentially halting construction of the facility.

Aussie Court Halts Santos' Barossa Pipeline Near Tiwi Islands

Santos was told by a court on Wednesday to halt its pipeline project around 70 kilometers (43 miles) north of the Tiwi Islands pending a final ruling, although it was allowed to begin laying gas pipelines for a section of its $3.6 billion Barossa gas project.

US Plans to Buy 1.2 Million Barrels of Oil for Strategic Petroleum Reserve

The U.S. plans to buy 1.2 million barrels of oil to help replenish the Strategic Petroleum Reserve after it sold off the largest amount ever last year, the Energy Department said on Monday.

Trans Mountain Resumes Pipeline Expansion Work in British Columbia After Addressing Regulatory Concerns

The Trans Mountain oil pipeline expansion project on Tuesday said it had been allowed to resume work in a wetland area near Abbotsford, British Columbia, after correcting issues raised by the Canada Energy Regulator (CER).