Energy Roundup: Exxon vs. Chavez, Makin' Bakken, Expensive Exploration, and More

Last Updated Dec 10, 2008 7:37 PM EST

chavez.JPGExxon vs. Chavez; round one to Exxon -- ExxonMobil has won the first round in what may be a long arbitration battle with Venezuelan president, Hugo Chavez. In a ruling in a London court, ExxonMobile has won a court order to freeze assets belonging to Petroleos de Venezuela, Venezuela's state oil company, in a dispute over Chavez's attempts to take state control of Venezuelan oil projects. [Source: Washington Post]

Could Bakken lead U.S. energy independence? -- The Bakken Formation, which lies under parts of North Dakota, Montana, Saskatchewan and Manitoba, could help the U.S. wean itself off of the teat of foreign oil. According the U.S. Geological Survey, the Bakken Formation could hold up to 413 billion barrels. With that kind of Kuwait Kool-Aid, who need renewables, wind or natural gas? [Source: Bloomberg]

Exploration costs on the rise -- Let's hope that whole Bakken thing works out, because while prices are plummeting, exploration costs are rising. In fact, in just the last six months alone exploration costs rose a brisk five percent, according to Cambridge Energy Research Associates, a unit of HIS Inc. [Source: Rigzone]

Constellation begins wheeling and dealing with Electricité de France over nukes -- Constellation Energy says that its board has authorized the company to start discussions with Electricité de France about the French firm's proposal to acquire half of Constellation's nuclear business. [Source: World Nuclear News]

Cha-ching! Hot opportunities for renewables providers in Europe as EU firms up clean energy target -- European leaders in the European Union have agreed on a bill that will require the union to use renewable sources for 20 percent of its power by 2020. Call it the 20x2020 bill. Wind, solar and biofuels sales teams, start honing those PowerPoint pitches. [Source: Earth2Tech]

(Image courtesy Alvaro via Flickr, CC 2.0)