Energy

Your Money
2:37 am
Tue February 10, 2015

The Great Solar Panel Debate: To Lease Or To Buy?

Elizabeth Ebinger in Maplewood, N.J., bought her solar panels, while neighbor Tim Roebuck signed a 20-year lease. Both are happy with the approach they took, and both are saving money on energy bills.
Jeff Brady NPR

Originally published on Tue February 10, 2015 11:12 am

More than 600,000 homes in the U.S. have solar panels today — up dramatically from just a few years ago, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association. Leasing programs that require little or no money up-front have played a key role in that growth.

But here's a question for homeowners: Is it better to lease or buy?

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Energy
6:05 am
Sat February 7, 2015

Fourth Energy Company Plans Layoffs In Oklahoma City, Tulsa

SandRidge Energy explores for and produces oil in shallow, conventional, domestic basins primarily in the Mississippian formation in Northwest Oklahoma and West Kansas.
Credit Provided

For the fourth time in a week, an Oklahoma energy company has announced layoffs because of low oil prices.

Team Oil Tools says it will close its manufacturing facility just east of downtown Tulsa in April and let its 95 workers go. The company makes oil and gas drilling equipment.

PostRock Energy Corp. said Thursday it's reducing staff at its headquarters by about 25 percent and will cut expenses to reduce operating costs by nearly $4 million a year.

The oil producing company had 57 employees at the end of 2013. A precise number of layoffs wasn't released.

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Energy
7:28 pm
Thu February 5, 2015

Federal US Appeals Court To Convene In Norman -- Among Cases Is Challenge To Keystone XL Pipeline

The 10th Circuit Courthouse in Denver. The judges are coming to Oklahoma to hear several cases.
Credit Sheri & Brian / Flickr.com

A federal appeals court that usually meets in Denver will be hearing cases in Oklahoma next week.

University of Oklahoma officials announced Thursday the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit will hear oral arguments for ten cases next week at the College of Law in Norman.

The judges will convene Tuesday and Wednesday in the college's Dick Bell Courtroom.

Among the cases on the court's docket is one challenging a federal permit that was authorized for the construction of the Keystone Gulf Coast Pipeline.

In February 2012, the Army Corps of Engineers authorized a permit allowing the construction of TransCanada’s Keystone Gulf Coast Pipeline.  The United States District Court of the Western District of Oklahoma affirmed the Corps actions.  Sierra Club, Inc., Clean Energy Future Oklahoma, and the East Texas Sub Regional Planning Commission (collectively “Appellants”) are appealing that decision.  They claim, in part, the Corps did not analyze the environmental consequences the pipeline could have such as the risk and impacts of oil spills or the cumulative and uplands impacts as required by the National Environmental Policy Act (“NEPA”).  Appellants also claim the Corps also violated the Clean Water Act and the Administrative Procedure Act. 

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Business
5:23 pm
Thu February 5, 2015

Planning Through Oil Booms Helps Small Producers Weather The Busts

Tracy Perryman is production manager for his family's small oil company in Luling, Texas. B.J.P. Inc. owns 116 wells that, combined, produce about 100 barrels a day.
John Burnett NPR

Originally published on Fri February 6, 2015 9:55 am

Hard times have hit the oil fields. A barrel of West Texas Intermediate crude has dropped from a high of over $100 to less than $50. But Tracy Perryman, a small oilman in Luling, Texas, has learned how to survive the lean times.

Oil companies that take on a lot of debt sometimes don't survive the downturns. But veterans of oil busts have learned how to plan for the inevitable price plunges.

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StateImpact Oklahoma
9:51 am
Thu February 5, 2015

Inhofe, Pruitt Sound Off On EPA's 'Waters Of The United States' Rule

Senator Jim Inhofe Facebook

A rare joint Congressional hearing in Washington Wednesday took up the issue of ‘Waters of the United States,’ the Environmental Protection Agency’s attempt to more clearly define which bodies of water qualify for federal protection under the Clean Water Act.

Republicans at the hearing — including Oklahoma’s senior U.S. senator and state attorney general — are convinced the move is a vast overreach of the EPA’s power that will place everything from ditches to farm ponds under government control.

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StateImpact Oklahoma
8:36 am
Thu February 5, 2015

Wind Power ‘Superhighway’ Could Help Transform Panhandle Into U.S. Energy Hub

A wind turbine under assembly near Balko in Oklahoma's Panhandle. When completed, the turbine will be part of Apex Energy's 300-megawatt Balko Wind Project.
Joe Wertz StateImpact Oklahoma

The wind energy boom has largely evaded Oklahoma’s Panhandle, but new turbine projects and a proposal for a $2 billion transmission line could transform the prairie into a national wind energy hub.

But the projects are being planned amid uncertainty at the state Capitol, where tax credits for the wind industry are in the crosshairs.

FILLING IN THE TRANSMISSION GAP

Despite being one of the state’s richest sources of wind energy, the Oklahoma Panhandle is home to very few wind farms.

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Energy
8:33 am
Wed February 4, 2015

Oklahoma Injection Well Ordered Shut Down After Earthquakes

Seismologists say oil and natural gas disposal wells, like this one near Sparks, Okla., are likely triggering earthquakes in Oklahoma.
Credit Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

A SandRidge Energy injection well has been ordered shut down because of numerous earthquakes near the well in north-central Oklahoma.

The Oklahoma Corporation Commission issued the order Tuesday after a 4.1 magnitude earthquake was recorded in the area on Friday. The well is the second to be shut down since the commission began a new monitoring system in 2013.

Injection wells are used to dispose of wastewater produced from oil and gas wells. Several studies have linked injection wells and earthquakes.

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Your Money
7:57 am
Wed February 4, 2015

Looking For Even Cheaper Gas? Go Generic At An Indie Station

Traffic moves along Route 21 in downtown Newark, N.J., where a gas station lists the price for regular unleaded gasoline at $1.72.
Julio Cortez AP

Originally published on Tue February 10, 2015 1:44 pm

By now, the surprise of cheap gas has probably worn off.

But drivers on the hunt for the very best prices have noticed a new trend: Small, independent gas stations are often the first to cut prices when the price of crude oil falls. This has a lot to do with how gas is bought, sold and moved from pipeline to pump.

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Environment
5:21 am
Wed February 4, 2015

Hard To Clean Up Wastewater Spills From Oil Wells Into N.D. Stream

Originally published on Wed February 4, 2015 6:40 am

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

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Business
5:07 am
Wed February 4, 2015

Demanding Higher Wages, Refinery Workers Strike Shell Oil

Originally published on Wed February 4, 2015 6:40 am

Copyright 2015 KUHF-FM. To see more, visit http://www.houstonpublicmedia.org.

Transcript

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