Energy and Environment Reporting for Texas


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

Latest Posts

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 […]

What’s Behind the Earthquakes in Dallas?

Tremors on the Rise Across Texas People in Dallas were surprised by a swarm of small earthquakes that started shaking the city a couple of days ago. There have been a dozen by the latest count.  And the quakes, though new to the Dallas area, are just the most recent in a major upsurge in […]

Amid a New Swarm of Quakes, Researchers Head to Irving

Updated 1/6/14 with more comment from Railroad Commission and information on Tuesday January 6th earthquake. A team of seismologists headed to the North Texas town of Irving Monday.  Like some other Texas towns, Irving has experienced scores of small earthquakes lately, 20 since last September, including a magnitude 3.5 quake that struck on January 6th. And the […]

Keystone XL or Not, Canadian Crude Already Shipping Out From U.S.

Congress’ attempts to force approval of the Keystone XL pipeline have re-ignited debate over the project, which would allow more crude oil to flow from the tar sands of Canada to refineries on the Gulf Coast.  It’s also re-ignited debate over what could happen to that oil once it gets to Texas. President Obama and […]

Oil & Gas Executives Bullish On Future

Survey says: energy executives see U.S. oil & gas outlook bright and getting brighter but worry about new EPA regulation. It’s been a big week already for Houston’s oil & gas industry with the proposed takeover by Halliburton of Baker Hughes. Economists say it’s one sign the industry is optimistic about the future. Some other signs are […]

New Federal Regulation Coming For Oil and Gas Well Pollution

The federal government says the oil & gas industry is the largest industrial source of pollution that creates smog. In coming months, Texas drillers could learn what the government plans to do about it. New pollution rules could mean that thousands of oil & gas wells in Texas will have to have their leaks fixed. “It’s an […]

Responding to Quakes, Texas Passes Disposal Well Rules

From Texas Tribune:  Texas regulators on Tuesday tightened rules for wells that dispose of oilfield waste, a response to the spate of earthquakes that have rattled North Texas. The three-member Texas Railroad Commission voted unanimously to adopt the rules, which require companies to submit additional information – including historic records of earthquakes in a region– when applying […]

Why Is the U.S. Still Importing So Much Oil?

Texas is leading the way in a massive boom in U.S. oil production: oil exports are higher than they’ve been since the 1950s, when the Suez Canal crisis caused a brief jump in shipments. Imports have dropped significantly, but even with that decline, Americans still import about a fourth of the oil they use. We called Tad Patzek, […]

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