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Monday, Sep 01st

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Tiny lizard could block Texas oil, gas exploration

Sagebrush lizardDeep in the West Texas sand dunes is something that some say could threaten the state's oil and gas production: A tiny lizard. But it's not just any lizard: It's a dunes sagebrush lizard, also known as the sand dune lizard.

This little brown reptile is a concern for state officials, who hope that federal officials don't designate it an endangered species. That, they say, could disrupt oil and gas exploration in the heart of Texas' oil country, leading to higher gas prices and shrinking dollars for schools.

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Are We on the Brink of Burying Nuke Power Forever?

This may be the moment history has turned definitively against atomic energy.

But what truly sets this moment apart is not just the radioactive nightmare. There have been others. There will certainly be more.

What's unique about now is the Solartopian flip side. It is the irrepressible fact that we have finally reached the green-powered tipping point.

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In Rebuilding Iraq’s Oil Industry, U.S. Subcontractors Hold Sway

US contractors dig for Iraq oilAmerican drilling companies stand to make tens of billions of dollars from the new petroleum activity in Iraq long before any of the oil producers start seeing any returns on their investments.

Lukoil and many of the other international oil companies that won fields in the auction are now subcontracting mostly with the four largely American oil services companies that are global leaders in their field: Halliburton, Baker Hughes, Weatherford International and Schlumberger. Those four have won the largest portion of the subcontracts to drill for oil, build wells and refurbish old equipment.

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Israel Authorises Mining of Natural Gas off Gaza Shore in Defiance of Palestinian Sovereignty

The Israeli Ministry of Infrastructure has demanded permission from the gas company Nobel Energy to start working in developing the natural gas field that was found off the Gaza Strip shoreline, under the pretext that Israel fears gas shortages in the coming year.

Israel gets natural gas from Egypt through an agreement in which Israel pays less than internationally recognised prices to Egypt. After the Egyptian uprising and the toppling of Hosni Mubarak, the Egyptian people demanded that the channeling of gas to Israel would be stopped until a new agreement could be reached, so that the Egyptian people could benefit first from their natural resources.

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After Japan, where's the next nuclear weak link?

Where is the next nuclear weak link?Imagine a country where corruption is rampant, infrastructure is very poor, or the quality of security is in question. Now what if that country built a nuclear power plant?

It may sound alarming but that is what could happen in many developing countries which are either building nuclear power plants or considering doing so - a prospect that raises serious questions after Japan's experience handling a nuclear crisis.

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Swiss Move to End Nuclear Era

Swiss phase out nuclear powerThe Swiss government Wednesday decided to exit nuclear energy by phasing out the country's existing nuclear plants and seeking alternative energy sources, in a response to security concerns following Japan's nuclear disaster.

Switzerland is the second country in Europe, after Germany, to drop nuclear energy as an electricity source after protests flared up amid fears that the reactor meltdown at Japan's Fukushima Daiichi plant, which was hit by an earthquake and a tsunami in March, could be repeated elsewhere.

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3 nuclear reactors melted down after quake, Japan confirms

Japan's Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant experienced full meltdowns at three reactors in the wake of an earthquake and tsunami in March, the country's Nuclear Emergency Response Headquarters said Monday.

The nuclear group's new evaluation, released Monday, goes further than previous statements in describing the extent of the damage caused by an earthquake and tsunami on March 11.

Tokyo Electric avoided using the term "meltdown," and says it was keeping the remnants of the core cool. But U.S. experts interviewed by CNN after the company's announcement in May said that while it may have been containing the situation, the damage had already been done.

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