Going backwards, further and faster…

June 5, 2008By Andy RowellBlog Post

Happy World Environment Day! Not so in America, though. It may be the most polluting and dirty oil on the planet, but American refiners are tripping over themselves to make investments to dramatically increase imports from Alberta’s oil sands. Figures released yesterday show that the oil industry is spending about $53 billion to expand or … Read More

Another US Refinery Blows Up

February 19, 2008By Andy RowellBlog Post

A huge explosion rocked a Texan oil refinery yesterday in a violent blast that shook buildings miles away and injured at least four people. One employee was hospitalized for burns, while three contractors were treated and released, said Blake Lewis, a spokesman for refinery owner Alon USA.

BP’s Browne Could Escape Court Grilling

January 28, 2008By Andy RowellBlog Post

The former chief executive of British oil giant BP, Lord Browne, can avoid extensive face-to-face grilling from plaintiffs’ lawyers about the deadly March 2005 explosion at the company’s Texas City refinery, the Texas Supreme Court has ruled. While the ruling directed a judge to enforce an agreement allowing for John Browne to give a one-hour … Read More

Kurds Continue to Expand Oil Industry

January 15, 2008By Andy RowellBlog Post

The row between the Kurds and Southern Iraq over is oil reserves and development of the oil industry (see yesterday’s blog) looks set to intensify. The Kurds are negotiating with two Canadian firms on a joint venture to construct an oil refinery and continue work on a second one to boost its fledgling oil industry.

Shell Sued for Refinery Pollution

January 8, 2008By Andy RowellBlog Post

Several green groups have sued Shell Oil and its affiliates, claiming the oil giant has for years released pollutants from its suburban Houston refinery that are well above state and federal limits. In their federal lawsuit, the Sierra Club and Environment Texas claim the excess air pollutants, including toxic chemicals benzene and 1,3-butadiene, are a … Read More

Explosion at Iraq’s Main Oil Refinery

January 7, 2008By Andy RowellBlog Post

Further trouble for Iraq’s beleaguered oil industry. An explosion today at a fuel storage tank caused a huge blaze at the country’s largest refinery some 180 km north of Baghdad, injuring at least 36 workers. The fire is said to be spreading. “This is the biggest fire I have ever seen at Baiji refinery. We … Read More

Victims of Oil

July 26, 2007By Mark FloegelBlog Post

The shop around the corner raised the price of sandwiches by a quarter this week. Although the housing meltdown is raising concerns that it may take the whole American economy down with it, prices are going up and the reason is the cost of oil. Oil, and therefore gas, prices remain at near-record levels. A … Read More

Refining Shortage Causes High Gas Prices

July 23, 2007By Andy RowellBlog Post 3 Comments

America’s high gas prices are being caused, in part, by what has been called an “invisible hurricane” – have been plagued by a record number of fires, power failures, leaks, spills and breakdowns this year, causing dozens of them to shut down temporarily or trim production. These mechanical breakdowns have created a bottleneck in domestic … Read More

BP Freezes Payments to Browne

July 10, 2007By Andy RowellBlog Post

It may not be such a happy retirement for Lord Browne. His former employer, BP has frozen payments worth more than £1.5m owed to him, while a court case is resolved. John Manzoni, the outgoing head of BP’s refining operations, is also having payments worth nearly £500,000 suspended.