Rising gas prices have again shifted the political debate between those calling for more drilling to meet America's fossil fuel dependency and those advocating for investment in alternative energy sources. Many environmentalists are convinced that we are nearing the day when fossil fuels are tapped out, or too expensive or too harmful to extract.
The temperature isn't the only thing that seems to be rising lately in the Granite State, so are gas prices. The cost of a gallon has gone up by about 20 cents in the last month and it shows no signs of slowing down. Some are predicting that by the summer we may be paying upwards of 5 dollars for a gallon of gas. Global energy markets blame harsh weather in Europe, tensions with Iran and a cutback in exports from such countries as Syria, Yemen and South Sudan. Some suggest that higher gas prices may not only affect the average driver's wallet, but upcoming political races as well, as we
Shell Oil Co. has chosen a site near Pittsburgh for a major, multibillion-dollar petrochemical refinery that could provide a huge economic boost to the region.
Dan Carlson, Shell's general manager of new business development, said Thursday that the company signed a land option agreement with Horsehead Corp. to evaluate a site near Monaca, about 35 miles northwest of Pittsburgh.
Gasoline prices have risen about 50 cents a gallon since January. The national average for regular gas stands at just above $3.80 per gallon.
Pity the drivers on the West Coast. Prices there have been much higher. At a Chevron station in Culver City, Calif., the price on Tuesday was $4.45 a gallon.
"I do building maintenance," Ursula Matthews said as she filled her tank. "I do a lot of driving from place to place. It's hurting me. I cannot raise the prices [of my services] with the economy what it is."
Anti-Nuclear groups are angered by a decision of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to exclude them from the re-licensing process for the Seabrook Nuclear Plant.
A number of groups filed for intervener status so that they could file objections to the plant's extension of its operation to 2050. The coalition of environmental organizations planned to argue that renewable energy resources, such as wind power, could ultimately replace nuclear power. But the NRC ruled that their argument lacked merit, because that replacement power isn't available now.
Airplanes use a lot of energy to get from place to place, but they also create a lot of it - especially, say, when they're slowing down and landing. Engineers at the University of Lincoln are looking at how to harness that energy so airplanes can power themselves.
Economists say many industries are looking up this year. But perhaps none has a better outlook than the energy sector.
New drilling technologies and rising fuel prices have generated a boom in drilling — and lots of high-paying jobs for people with the skills to work in the oil patch. On some college campuses, companies are so eager to find petroleum engineers that they are offering jobs to students even before they have graduated.
A woman picks carrots on her farm as she explains her fears that no one will buy them since the radiation fallout in March 2011 in Fukushima, Japan. A year later, challenges persist for farmers in the region.
Credit Doualy Xaykaothao for NPR
Yoshiko Watanabe stands near where her roadside vegetable stand used to be in Kawauchi village in Japan's Fukushima prefecture.
The mountain village of Kawauchi lies partly inside the area deemed unsafe because of high levels of radiation in Japan's Fukushima prefecture. Chiharu Kubota uses a high-pressure water gun to hose down buildings there.
Radiation is still leaking from the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant, which suffered multiple meltdowns immediately after last year's earthquake and tsunami.
Rising gas prices have been the big energy story of the past several weeks. But many energy experts say that's a sideshow compared with the really big energy event — the huge boom in oil and natural gas production in the U.S. that could help the nation reach the elusive goal of energy independence.
Since the Arab oil embargo of 1973, energy independence has been a Holy Grail for virtually every American president from Richard Nixon to Jimmy Carter to Barack Obama.
Part two of a two-part series on the Keystone XL pipeline
Gas isn't like a rare bottle of wine that fetches a high price just because it's rare. But at the same time, no one can agree what drives gas prices. Demand for gasoline in the U.S. is at its lowest point in more than a decade; domestic oil production is at an eight-year high.
Part one of a two-part series on the Keystone XL pipeline
Gas prices are spiking once again; the cost of a gallon of regular unleaded is about 12 percent higher than it was a year ago. But winter typically isn't the time for a rise in gas prices. Demand for gasoline is at a 14-year low and domestic oil production is at an eight-year high.
The USS Abraham Lincoln sailed from the Persian Gulf through the Strait of Hormuz on Tuesday. This photo was taken from the bridge of the aircraft carrier and shows U.S. aircraft parked on its flight deck. In the background, a U.S. destroyer patrols.
Credit Jumana El Heloueh / Reuters/Landov
A helicopter from the aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln hovers over an Iranian patrol ship during a transit through the Strait of Hormuz on Tuesday.
The dispute over Iran's nuclear program has again rocked oil markets. And Iran is threatening to close the Strait of Hormuz, which is just 34 miles wide yet serves as the passageway for 20 percent of the world's oil.
This is not a new drama. In fact, it was a recurring issue in the 1980s. Still, there's been relatively little activity among Gulf oil producers to find alternative routes to get their oil to market.