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US rig count up 5 this week to 511

HOUSTON (AP) — The number of rigs exploring for oil and natural gas in the U.S. increased by five this week to 511. A year ago, 838 rigs were active. Depressed energy prices have sharply curtailed oil and gas exploration. Houston oilfield services company Baker Hughes Inc. said Friday that 418 rigs sought oil and 92 explored for natural gas ...

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Montana board to decide on fracking chemicals disclosures

fracking, bakken

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — Montana regulators are to consider a petition that would force companies to divulge more information about fracking chemicals they use to produce oil and gas. A 2011 state rule allows companies to conceal chemicals considered trade secrets. A group of landowners, environmentalists and health advocates oppose the trade secrets exception. They say it violates the public’s ...

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AP Exclusive: Iraq oil fires could jeopardize Mosul mission

Iraq fires

WASHINGTON (AP) — A fire at one of Iraq’s major oil fields could hinder military and humanitarian efforts as operations to recapture the Islamic State stronghold of Mosul get underway. Black smoke continues to billow into the air from the Qayara oil field, damaged by IS militants last month as they fled the town, creating health risks for civilians and ...

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The Latest: Accord reached on documents in ongoing Gulf oil leak

Company sues feds over funds for decade-old Gulf oil leak

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The Latest on a court fight over the confidentiality of documents related to an ongoing leak of oil from a site damaged by Hurricane Ivan in 2004 (all times local): ___ 11 a.m. Environmental attorneys and an energy company have agreed to work out differences over the confidentiality of documents concerning an ongoing oil leak in ...

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Company restarts gasoline pipeline after leak in Alabama

Colonial pipeline, gasoline pipeline

ATLANTA (AP) — Colonial Pipeline restarted the gasoline pipeline in Alabama that had been shut down because of a major leak, which caused shortages and surging fuel prices across the South. The pipeline was reopened Wednesday evening, company officials said in a statement. The pipeline leak was discovered Sept. 9 near Helena, Alabama, when state workers noticed a strong gasoline ...

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Pipeline will soon reopen, carrying gasoline to 5 states

natural gas pipeline, pipeline spill

ATLANTA (AP) — Gasoline should begin flowing again Wednesday — through a temporary bypass on a critical pipeline — after a major leak in Alabama forced a shutdown that led to surging fuel prices and scattered gas shortages across the South, a company official said Tuesday. The roughly 500-foot (152-meter) section of pipe serving as the bypass is now complete, ...

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Edwards defends contract with top fundraiser for legal work

Louisiana

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Defending his administration’s legal contract with a top fundraiser, Gov. John Bel Edwards on Wednesday accused Louisiana’s attorney general of fabricating politically motivated reasons for rejecting the lawyer’s contract to represent the state in litigation against oil and gas companies over coastal wetland loss. Edwards said Attorney General Jeff Landry either doesn’t understand or is ...

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North Dakota borrowing $6M for pipeline protest costs

DAPL protest

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — A North Dakota legislative committee has approved an emergency request to borrow $6 million to cover the cost of law enforcement related to the ongoing protest of the four-state Dakota Access oil pipeline. The state’s Emergency Commission, headed by Gov. Jack Dalrymple, voted Wednesday to borrow the funds from the state-owned Bank of North Dakota. The ...

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US stocks mostly higher as banks rise before Fed meeting

stock markets, wall street, federal reserve

NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stocks are slightly higher in indecisive trading Monday afternoon. Banks are gaining as investors wait for the Federal Reserve to meet this week, while health care companies take small losses. KEEPING SCORE: The Dow Jones industrial average rose 32 points, or 0.2 percent, to 18,156 as of 3:15 p.m. Eastern time. The Standard & Poor’s ...

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Swiss traders blame governments for dirty fuel in Africa

West Africa, dirty petrol, sulfur

LAGOS, Nigeria (AP) — Swiss commodity traders accused of deliberately blending toxic fuel and dumping it in West Africa say African governments are to blame for low standards and failure to invest in refineries and newer vehicles to lower exhaust emissions that cause respiratory and other diseases. “What is very clear is that the role of improving fuel quality in ...

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