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Environmental Groups Gear Up to Stop US LNG Exports

The Sierra Club and other groups are taking on US LNG exports just when LNG is gainging support as a key response to Russia's aggressive behavior in Ukraine.The science behind their claims does not withstand scrutiny, and their timing couldn't be...

Posted April 8, 2014    

How Can US Natural Gas Reduce Europe's Dependence on Russia?

The EU's dependence on Russian natural gas is directly linked to its own gas production, which has fallen faster than EU member countries' demand for gas.While US LNG exports aren't an immediate remedy, due to permitting and construction...

Posted March 31, 2014    

Making Oil-by-Rail Safer

A series of rail accidents involving trains carrying crude oil has focused attention on safety procedures and even the tank cars used in this service.Another concern is the variable characteristics of the "light tight oil "now shipped by...

Posted March 24, 2014    

Will Shale Oil Growth Lead to New US Refineries?

The revival of US oil production is spurring new investments in refineries, including the restart or new construction of small refineries near these resources.How well such investments perform will depend on both the longevity of shale oil...

Posted March 17, 2014    

Energy Risks of the Ukraine Crisis

 Russia's intervention in the Crimean Peninsula poses few risks to Europe's energy supplies, but escalation or Western sanctions could change that assessment.If the crisis expanded to mainland Ukraine, the integrity of that country's ...

Posted March 5, 2014    

Can Solar Energy Fill the Hydropower Gap During California's Drought?

Although the scale of California's conventional hydropower remains much larger than that of solar power, solar's rapid growth provides a meaningful contribution to the grid.Solar power can work nearly anywhere, but installing it where it's actually...

Posted March 3, 2014    

A Solar Car for the Masses?

Ford is currently showing a concept car that addresses the shortcomings of solar-powered transportation in a clever way. If they can make it a cost-effective option, it would provide consumers a new kind of convenience, in contrast to the...

Posted February 25, 2014    

US Oil Demand Returns to Growth

Early estimates indicate that US oil demand grew by 2% last year, after several years of declining consumption.Although superficially consistent with recent GDP data, it's not yet clear whether this reflects a new trend or the results of...

Posted February 17, 2014    

Interpreting the State Department's Latest Assessment of the Keystone XL Pipeline

On Wednesday I participated in a webchat hosted by The Energy Collective on the subject of the emissions and market impact of the Keystone XL Pipeline (KXL). It was prompted by last week's release of the State Department's "Final Supplemental ...

Posted February 6, 2014    

The Pros and Cons of Exporting US Crude Oil

Calls for an end to the effective ban on exporting most crude oil produced in the US are based on a growing imbalance in domestic crude quality.At least recently, the ban has likely benefited refiners more than consumers. Assessing the ...

Posted January 30, 2014    

Converting Coal to Synthetic Natural Gas in China

With so much attention focused on China's shale gas potential, its growing synthetic natural gas industry is a wild card.In light of China's severe air quality problems,  trading smog for higher CO2 emissions is an understandable choice, but...

Posted January 22, 2014    

Canada: From Energy Supplier to Competitor?

In addition to its impact on global oil and natural gas pricing and trade, the shale revolution is altering the energy relationship between the US and Canada.This long-standing supplier/customer relationship is becoming more complex as producers in...

Posted January 14, 2014