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Study finds higher methane levels as well sites decline in Marcellus in US

A new study shows that background levels of methane in Northeast Pennsylvania in the U.S. increased significantly at a time when well drilling activity decreased, pointing to leaks of natural gas during production and transportation. Researchers from Drexel University found that atmospheric levels of the potent greenhouse gas increased by 100 parts per billion between…

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U.S. energy firms descend on West Texas’ Permian Basin as oil recovers

In most U.S. shale oil regions, energy firms are making strategic but cautious bets as the price of oil holds above $50 a barrel. In the Permian Basin of West Texas, the largest U.S. oil patch, the industry poured more than $28 billion into land acquisitions last year – more than triple what they spent…

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Scotland’s govt starts fracking and shale gas consultation

The Scottish Government has begun consulting on the future of unconventional oil and gas in Scotland, including on hydraulic fracturing or ‘fracking’, and coal bed methane extraction. Energy minister Paul Wheelhouse said: “As most of Scotland’s unconventional oil and gas deposits occur in and around former coalfields and oil shale fields in Scotland’s Central Belt,…

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US govt gives go ahead for $3 bn northeast shale as pipeline

Williams Cos. won U.S. approval to build its $3 billion Atlantic Sunrise natural gas pipeline expansion in the Northeast, ending a review that ran almost two years and forced delays in the project. The 200-mile pipeline will expand shipments from shale formations by enough to serve 7 million homes, according to Williams. The Federal Energy…

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Petrochina aims to reach 33% of China’s shale gas target by 2020

China’s energy giant PetroChina plans to step up shale gas development in the Sichuan province this year, aiming to meet a third of a 2020 government target for the unconventional resource, according to state media and a government official. News agency Xinhua reported that PetroChina will step up drilling in southern parts of Sichuan province,…

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Shale gas growth prompts Mitsubishi to expand its U.S. oil and gas business

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries will expand its operations related to supplying oil and gas-related machinery in the U.S., where further growth is expected in the shale gas production. The Japanese heavy machinery maker’s U.S. subsidiary, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries America Inc., recently set up a Houston-based unit to oversee production and sales of gas turbines and compressors…

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IEA sees big increase in US shale oil as prices rise

Increases in the price of oil will trigger a “significant” increase in U.S. shale output as OPEC and other producers rein in supply, according to the head of the International Energy Agency. “U.S. shale-oil production will definitely react strongly,” Executive Director Fatih Birol said in a Bloomberg Television interview in Davos, Switzerland. At $56 to $57…

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