Governor pans PG&E bankruptcy exit plan, wants 'radically restructured' utility
One day after embattled California utility Pacific Gas and Electric Co., or PG&E, and its parent PG&E Corp. jointly filed a revised Chapter 11 bankruptcy restructuring proposal, backed by $25.5 billion in settlements with wildfire victims, Gov. Gavin Newsom said the plan falls "woefully short" of the requirements of a 2019 state law.
US hit new high for proved oil, gas reserves in 2018, EIA says
Oil and gas proved reserves hit a new high in 2018, the U.S. Energy Information Administration reported, with natural gas proved reserves up by about 9% to 504.5 Tcf at the end of 2018 from a prior record level of 464.3 Tcf, and proved reserves of crude oil in the U.S. increasing about 12% to 43.8 billion barrels from 39.2 billion barrels at the end of 2017.
Liberty Mutual rolls out new coal exclusions; existing ties to phase out by 2023
Liberty Mutual Group Inc. will no longer accept underwriting risk for companies that derive more than 25% of their profit from the extraction or production of energy from thermal coal.
Higher power sector demand lifts US gas use by 2%
Natural gas consumption in the U.S. increased by 2% during the week ended Dec. 11 as higher usage in the power sector offset declining demand in the industrial sector.
"I would say that some technologies are definitely a lot more mainstream than others, but a lot more work [needs] to be done — certainly on the storage side — as we look to displace all fossil fuels and as we look to move towards a carbon-neutral environment," BNP Paribas Head of Energy, Natural Resources and Renewables Ravina Advani said at the S&P Global Platts Global Energy Outlook Forum in New York.
* Thirteen years after former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger signed into law the Million Solar Roofs Initiative, the actor and politician joined with his successor, former Gov. Jerry Brown, and solar industry representatives in celebrating the state's achievement of that milestone.
* During the third quarter of 2019, rooftop solar installations in Texas jumped by 32% compared to the same period in 2018, according to the Houston Chronicle, citing a report by Wood Mackenzie, with 32 MW of new capacity added.
* Delegations gathered at the COP25 climate summit in Madrid failed to hash out even a nonbinding agreement to ramp up efforts on climate change, Reuters reported. The participants ended the summit on Dec. 15, agreeing only to a declaration of the "urgent need" to address the issue.
* The U.S. will have a $70 billion offshore wind business pipeline by 2030, CNBC reported, citing Laura Morton, a senior director at the American Wind Energy Association. A 30-MW project off Block Island, R.I., is still the country's only operational project, however.
* The Bureau of Land Management has issued a new policy for effective vegetation management along electric transmission and distribution line rights-of-way to limit the risk of wildfires.
* Facing de-listing from the NYSE, oil and gas driller Chesapeake Energy Corp. is planning a set of measures to regain compliance with NYSE listing standards which could include a reverse stock split, the company said in a Dec. 13 release.
* After seeing record high average natural gas prices last winter, Southern California Gas Co. customers should pay less for gas this winter after state regulators loosened restrictions on withdrawals from the utility's Aliso Canyon storage facility and a vital pipe in the area was repaired, the U.S. Energy Information Administration said.
* WPX Energy Inc. agreed to acquire Delaware Basin-focused producer Felix Energy LLC for $2.5 billion.
* The Moody's 2020 outlooks for the producer and oilfield services sectors are stable amid forecasts for crude oil prices to remain range-bound but volatile.
* Phillips 66 announced a capital budget of $3.34 billion for 2020 that allocates $1.19 billion to sustaining capital and $2.15 billion to growth capital.
* Oil prices took a boost on Dec. 13, with Brent Crude hitting $65 per barrel, after oil production cuts and progress in U.S.-China trade negotiations encouraged buying, The Financial Times reported.
* Goldman Sachs pledged to not finance any oil exploratory work in the Arctic region and new thermal coal projects, including mining and power generation.
* U.S. lawmakers proposed bipartisan legislation to support the research and development of coal-derived carbon products.
* Citing slowing economic growth and increasingly difficult market conditions, Moody's Investors Service placed a negative outlook on the U.S. coal and steel sectors for 2020.
* Former New York City Mayor and 2020 White House hopeful Mike Bloomberg called to shut down all U.S. coal plants by 2030 and for the country to rely fully on clean energy by 2050 as part of a campaign energy plan.
* Foresight Energy LP requested an extension until the end of February 2020 in its restructuring talks with bondholders, after missing an interest payment in October, The Wall Street Journal reported. The company is majority owned by bankrupt Murray Energy Corp.
After falling below 800 rigs a week prior, the U.S. oil and natural gas rig count remained unchanged at 799 rigs during the week ended Dec. 13, according to the latest Rotary Rig Count released by Baker Hughes Co.
New from RRA
* The Public Utility Commission of Texas has denied a request by the City of El Paso for an extension of time for settlement discussions and for a PUC final decision in its review of the proposed acquisition of El Paso Electric Co. by Sun Jupiter Holdings LLC.
The day ahead
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