Texas

Energy and Environment Reporting for Texas

Background

Tracking the players in the ever-growing energy and environmental world.

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Oil Prices Spell Bad News For Texas Budget Forecast

This week, oil prices dropped below $50 for the first time since February, a development that could upend the state’s predictions of oil revenue for this year. Estimates from the Comptroller of Public Accounts put oil prices at an average of just over $64 per barrel in 2015 and 2016. And, as of now, those [...]

Mexican Venture Capital Seeks Permian Basin Opportunity Amid Oil Downturn

This story was reported by Lorne Matalon in collaboration with Fronteras, The Changing America Desk. Mexican venture capital is hovering over distressed energy companies in the Permian Basin of Texas, the nation’s highest-producing oilfield. Those companies – including oil and gas drillers, and service companies – crafted budgets when the price of crude oil was 100 [...]

Legislation Aims to for More Oversight of Scrap Metal Recycling in Texas

Houston area residents who live near some scrap metal recycling facilities are inhaling dangerous levels of a metal carcinogen called Chromium Six. It’s the same pollutant at the heart of the class action lawsuit portrayed in the film Erin Brockovich. The Houston Chronicle first reported about the pollution in 2012, after the city received 189 complaints [...]

Looking for a Silver Lining in Falling Oil Prices in Texas

Economists and state officials are reaching for their calculators as to predict how  the Texas economy will respond to lower oil prices. We’re already seeing falling oil and natural gas revenues pinch incomes and constrain spending, including layoffs at some energy companies. But is there also a silver lining? Could the downturn in the energy [...]

West Texas to Mexico Pipelines On Track for 2017 Finish

A Dallas-based company looking to build two sizable natural gas pipelines from Far West Texas to Mexico says it plans to have both pipelines built and operating by early 2017. Energy Transfer won a contract from Mexico’s electricity commission to build the manage the pipeline’s construction. It’s estimated the two 42″ lines could carry a combined 2.8 [...]

Company Wants to Expand Nuclear Waste Site in Texas

A Dallas-based company is looking to expand its nuclear waste site in rural West Texas into a longer-term storage site for high-level radioactive waste. Waste Control Specialists (WCS) is asking the federal Nuclear Regulatory Commission to approve a new license to expand its above-ground storage facility in Andrews County to allow more radioactive types of waste. The [...]

It Looks Like Financial Markets Are Betting On Keystone XL

The financial markets may be betting that the Keystone XL pipeline is a done deal. The U.S. House and Senate have now both passed bills to force approval of the controversial pipeline.  The southern leg of the project already delivers oil from Cushing, Oklahoma to the Texas Gulf Coast. But approval of the full build-out [...]

Quiz: Beer, Coffee, or Crude Oil? Sometimes It’s Hard to Tell

Anyone who spends time looking at how oil is drilled for and refined around the world comes to notice something strange. The names people give to different types of crude oil can sound surprisingly delicious. In reporting on the role that benchmark oil prices play in moving the price of gasoline, I was introduced to [...]

How Crude Oil Prices Drive the Cost of Gasoline

If you’ve followed the drop in oil prices over the last few months you might have noticed the words “Brent” and “WTI” being thrown around without much explanation. The price of these benchmark crude oils influences everything from how big oil companies invest in drilling, to the amount you pay to fill up your car. So what [...]

From Pipeline to Pump, How Gasoline Gets to Your Car

By now, the initial surprise over low gas prices has worn off. But people looking for the very best deals might have noticed a trend: small, unbranded gas stations are often the first to cut prices. Many of them continue to stay competitive even when larger brand-name stations cut their prices as well. To understand [...]

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