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Oil & Gas

Labour pledges energy bill review

13/03/2015

Labour will legislate to give the regulator the power to order energy companies to cut their prices by the end of the year if the party gains office at the UK general-election in May, Ed Miliband is promising. The Labour leader has indicated that one of his first acts in government would be to push through a bill requiring Ofgem to conduct a review of energy prices by the autumn, with the power to enforce reductions if they are deemed to be too high.

Oil & Gas

Iona Energy asks bondholders to extend terms

North Sea explorer Iona Energy has asked its bondholders to extend terms on its debt by about £90million until it can reach first oil on its Orlando field later this year or at the start of 2016. Last year the Toronto and Aberdeen-based raised £185million from lenders. But it has been hit by a double whammy of both falling oil prices and production problems at its main North Sea field in production, Huntington.

Oil & Gas

Sunrise generates first oil for Husky

13/03/2015

Canadian energy firm Husky Energy has started oil production at the Sunrise Energy Project in northern Alberta. Chief executive Asim Ghosh said: "Sunrise is the latest in a series of resilient, low sustaining capital projects to come online from our diverse portfolio.

North Sea

Oil and gas company cuts TV service in savings drive

12/03/2015

A North Sea oil and gas company has saved £600,000 by cutting Sky TV services from its offshore sites. Talisman Sinopic Energy UK has axed the subscription satellite TV service on its North Sea locations in an effort to save costs during downturn in the Scottish oil and gas industry.

Europe

Lords criticise “last minute measures” to keep Britain’s lights on

12/03/2015

The UK Government “sailed too close to the wind” before taking measures to keep the lights on, at a cost to taxpayers and the environment, peers have said. An inquiry by the Lords science and technology committee, prompted by concerns over blackouts as the country’s capacity to meet peak demand was squeezed, found it would take an “improbable” sequence of events to put the lights out nationally.

Oil & Gas

Venezuelan oil firm allegedly hit by money launderers

12/03/2015

The entire board of Spain’s Banco de Madrid has resigned after its Andorran owner was accused by the US of siphoning money from Venezuela's state oil on behalf of clients. The seven-member board stood down to “defend the interests of employees and clients” and “eliminate any doubt about the stability” of the bank.

Europe

Davey says UK expertise can drive climate change action

12/03/2015

The UK is to use its "world-leading" climate and adaptation expertise to help countries successfully tackle climate change, Energy Secretary Ed Davey said today. Launching the initiative at a round-table meeting of leading environmental organisations and UK Government officials in London, he said: "The UK is a global leader in tackling climate change and the major threat it poses to our prosperity and security.

Oil & Gas

Concerns over Cairn Energy’s £1billion tax bill

British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond raised concerns in India today over a £1billion tax bill charged to oil explorer Cairn Energy. Mr Hammond said Finance Minister Arun Jaitley had explained the Cairn case was started by the previous government and that he was powerless to stop it, but repeated his promise of no fresh retrospective tax litigation.

Oil & Gas

Celtique Energie will not appeal planning decision

12/03/2015

A shale company has decided it will not appeal against decisions to refuse planning permission to explore for oil and gas at two sites. Celtique Energie had applied to drill a temporary well to test for oil and gas in the South Downs National Park, near the village of Fernhurst, West Sussex, but the application was turned down in September last year.

Europe

Greenpeace keeps pressing for full disclosure of fracking report

12/03/2015

Greenpeace has appealed to Britain's transparency watchdog, the Information Commissioner, over the UK Government’s "repeated refusal" to publish the full version of a heavily redacted report on the impacts of fracking. The environmental campaigners want ministers to release the report in full before a crucial vote by Lancashire authorities on whether to allow shale firm Cuadrilla to frack in the area.

Europe

Stronger dollar softens oil price blow for European producers

12/03/2015

After taking a battering from the crash in crude prices, Europe’s oil and gas producers are gaining some relief from the relentless slide in the euro. France’s Total, Italy’s En and Repsol of Spain will benefit most from earning revenue from oil and gas sales in US dollars, the industry’s dominant currency, while paying a large chunk of salaries, rent and other costs in euros, according to data compiled by Bloomberg Intelligence.

Australasia

Solar powered plane touches down in India

11/03/2015

The pilots of a solar-powered aircraft on an historic round-the-world journey say they want the people of India to support their campaign for clean energy to save the global environment. Bertrand Piccard and Andre Borschberg spoke to reporters in the western Indian city of Ahmadabad a day after Mr Piccard flew the single-seat plane there from Muscat, Oman.

Oil & Gas

Subsea 7 boss takes hefty pay cut

11/03/2015

Subsea 7 has refused to say if more jobs will go across its global operations after it revealed 1,000 were shed in 2014. The energy service giant is also reducing its fleet capability by 10 vessels over a two-year period as it continues to look for ways to slash costs in the wake of the big drop in oil prices.

Oil & Gas

GDF Suez gets ready for first gas from Cygnus

11/03/2015

The largest new gas field to be discovered in the southern North Sea for 25 years is expected to lead to an economic boost across the east of England and a“massive benefit for UK industry". Gas will start flowing into Bacton later this year from the Cygnus field, one of the biggest projects in the southern North Sea for years.

Europe

Quakes force Dutch lawmakers to cut gas production

11/03/2015

Dutch communities rattled by earthquakes are upending Europe’s energy market. Towns in the northern province of Groningen sit atop the continent’s biggest gas field, where the Dutch government says exploration by oil and gas majors Royal Dutch Shell and ExxonMobil has triggered 196 earthquakes since 2013, damaging buildings and making home sales difficult.

Oil & Gas

APR invests in Myanmar power plant upgrade

11/03/2015

US "fast track" power firm APR Energy has commissioned a 20 megawatt (MW) expansion of its generation plant in Myanmar. The Jacksonville, Florida-based company said the investment would provide the Myanmar Electric Power Enterprise with a guaranteed minimum of 102MW of power generation.

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