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New Documents Show Oil Industry Even More Evil Than We Thought

big oilIn 1968, a pair of scientists from Stanford Research Institute wrote a report for the American Petroleum Institute, a trade association for America’s oil and natural gas industry. They warned that “man is now engaged in a vast geophysical experiment with his environment, the earth” — one that “may be the cause of serious world-wide environmental changes.”

The scientists went on: “If the Earth’s temperature increases significantly, a number of events might be expected to occur including the melting of the Antarctic ice cap, a rise in sea levels, warming of the oceans and an increase in photosynthesis.”

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Notorious Coal Baron Don Blankenship Sentenced to a Year in Prison

Don BlankenshipA federal judge in West Virginia sentenced former Massey Energy CEO Don Blankenship to a year in prison on Wednesday for conspiring to commit mine safety violations at his company's Upper Big Branch mine during a period leading up to the explosion there that left 29 miners dead in 2010.

Blankenship was convicted of the misdemeanor charge in December, but the conviction was explicitly not linked to the Upper Big Branch disaster itself and Blankenship's attorney worked hard to ensure the accident was hardly mentioned during the trial.

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Big Banks Aided Firm At Center Of International Bribery Scandal

Big BanksNo business can operate without bankers — not even the bribery business.

British financial giant HSBC and American bailout kingpin Citibank processed transactions, managed money and vouched for Unaoil, a once-obscure firm that is now at the center of a massive international corruption scandal. Police raided Unaoil’s Monaco offices and interviewed its executives on Thursday, a day after The Huffington Post and Fairfax Media first exposed the company’s practices. Law enforcement agencies in at least four nations are involved in a wide-ranging probe of the company and its partners.

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U.S. Oil Industry Giant Paid Millions To A Company At The Center Of Huge Corruption Scandal

KBRThe American engineering and construction firm KBR hired Unaoil — an obscure Monaco-based company now involved in a massive international bribery scandal — to help it win oil and gas contracts in Kazakhstan. KBR, which until 2007 was part of the oilfield services giant Halliburton, paid Unaoil millions of dollars from 2004 until at least 2009, according to thousands of internal documents obtained by The Huffington Post and Fairfax Media.

Halliburton and KBR have been in trouble for bribery in the past. After a years-long federal investigation, KBR pleaded guilty in 2009 to multiple criminal counts of violating U.S. foreign corruption laws by bribing Nigerian officials. KBR agreed to pay $402 million as part of a settlement. Halliburton and KBR also paid $177 million to settle SEC civil charges related to the same conduct. Three years later, Albert “Jack” Stanley, KBR’s former CEO, was sentenced to 30 months in federal prison for his role in the scandal. As part of the deal with the Justice Department, KBR agreed to waive many of its legal rights if it was caught violating bribery laws again.

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Why 175 Oil And Gas Companies Could Go Bankrupt This Year

Oil and Gas companies go bankruptAbout a third of U.S. oil and gas production and exploration companies are at high risk of going bankrupt in 2016, according to a new report.

The report, published Tuesday by consulting and business services firm Deloitte, looked at more than 500 oil and natural gas exploration and production companies worldwide. It found that 175 of the companies — or nearly 35 percent — were at high risk of going bankrupt, due largely to low oil prices. Together, these companies have more than $150 billion in debt.

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Scotland hosting new type of offshore wind program

Scotland floats new wind programThe Scottish government said it granted a license to the operators of what Edinburgh said may be the world's largest offshore floating wind energy development.

Norwegian energy company Statoil was granted a license for its Hywind pilot project that envisions up to five turbines installed by an anchoring system that developers said would facilitate deep-water installation.

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Oil Services Co.,Baker Huhes, lays off 10,500

Baker Hughes "Extreme market forces" are in play in the global energy sector, oil services company Baker Hughes said Tuesday in announcing widespread layoffs.

The company said it was cutting about 17 percent of its workforce, or around 10,500 jobs, as it works to streamline its finances amid the drop in exploration and production. During the first quarter, Baker Hughes reported revenue of $4.59 billion, a 20 percent decline year-on-year.

"Our first quarter results are a reflection of the extreme market forces faced by our industry since late December," Baker Hughes Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Martin Craighead said in a statement. "Consistent with past downturns, many of our customers have curtailed or canceled projects."

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