China Cancels Military Meeting With Vietnam Over Territorial Dispute

HONG KONG — State-run newspapers in Vietnam and China reported in recent days that senior military officials from the two countries would hold a fence-mending gathering along a border where their militaries fought a brief but bloody war in 1979. But Tuesday, the scheduled start of the gathering, came and went without any of the coverage in the state news media that readers in the two countries had expected. The Chinese Defense Ministry later said in a terse statement that it had canceled the event “for reasons related to working…

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Saudi Prince’s Elevation Will Have Far-Reaching Consequences in Energy

As the new heir apparent to the throne of Saudi Arabia, Prince Mohammed bin Salman will play an even more influential role in world oil markets at a time when big crude-producing nations are struggling to prop up prices. Prince Mohammed, who was named crown prince on Wednesday, has upended the traditional Saudi energy model in the nearly two and a half years since his father ascended the throne. Whereas the royal family had previously been content to leave the running of the oil industry to seasoned technocrats, the prince…

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Too Hot to Fly? Climate Change May Take a Toll on Air Travel

In recent days, American Airlines has been forced to cancel more than 40 flights in Phoenix. The reason: With daytime highs hovering around 120 degrees, it was simply too hot for some smaller jets to take off. Hotter air is thinner air, which makes it more difficult — and sometimes impossible — for planes to generate enough lift. As the global climate changes, disruptions like these are likely to become more frequent, researchers say, potentially making air travel costlier and less predictable with a greater risk of injury to travelers…

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Libya’s Increased Oil Production Thwarts OPEC’s Reduction Plans

HOUSTON — The price of oil keeps sinking, and there is no shortage of reasons: American oil companies are producing too much petroleum. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries has not cut production enough. Motorists around the globe are not driving enough to shrink crude and gasoline inventories as quickly as expected. But the biggest wild card in the equation — one that could tip prices at the pump from one day to the next — is oil-rich Libya, among the most unstable countries in North Africa. Contrary to…

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Economic Scene: Fisticuffs Over the Route to a Clean-Energy Future

Could the entire American economy run on renewable energy alone? This may seem like an irrelevant question, given that both the White House and Congress are controlled by a party that rejects the scientific consensus about human-driven climate change. But the proposition that it could, long a dream of an environmental movement as wary of nuclear energy as it is of fossil fuels, has been gaining ground among policy makers committed to reducing the nation’s carbon footprint. Democrats in both the United States Senate and in the California Assembly have…

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Exxon Mobil Lends Its Support to a Carbon Tax Proposal

Exxon Mobil, other oil companies and a number of other corporate giants announced on Tuesday that they are supporting a plan to tax carbon emissions that was put forth this year by a group of Republican elder statesmen. The group, the Climate Leadership Council, unveiled a “conservative climate solution” in February that would fight global warming by taxing greenhouse gas emissions and returning the money to taxpayers as a “climate dividend.” The underlying idea is that, by making energy derived from fossil fuels more expensive, the free market will move…

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Both Climate Leader and Oil Giant? A Norwegian Paradox

Greenpeace Norway has sued the government, arguing that granting new permits to drill in the Arctic is inconsistent with its obligations under the Paris accord, which seeks to keep the global rise in temperatures since the preindustrial era below 2 degrees Celsius. In May, Statoil began work on five new exploration wells in the Barents Sea, and the company is bullish on the prospects. It says that it explores only in ice-free waters. (Cleaning up an oil spill in ice is next to impossible, environmentalists say.) A spokesman, Morten Eek,…

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OPEC Took Aim at U.S. Oil Producers, but Hurt Itself, Too

HOUSTON — Picture a three-year-old tug of war waged across the globe that leaves both sides wobbly and scarred but unmoved. That’s one way of looking at the high-stakes competition between the world’s big oil exporters and the companies drilling in American shale fields. The struggle for dominance of the 97-million-barrel-a-day global market has left a scorecard that few in the oil patch could have anticipated three years ago, when oil sold for over $100 a barrel — more than twice the current price, which is near 12-month lows. With…

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Energy Department Closes Office Working on Climate Change Abroad

WASHINGTON — The Energy Department is closing an office that works with other countries to develop clean energy technology, another sign of the Trump administration’s retreat on climate-related activities after its withdrawal from the Paris agreement this month. The 11 staff members of the Office of International Climate and Technology were told this month that their positions were being eliminated, according to current and former agency employees. The office was formed in 2010 to help the United States provide technical advice to other nations seeking to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.…

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How Retiring Nuclear Power Plants May Undercut U.S. Climate Goals

But opposition abounds. In Ohio, the American Petroleum Institute is waging a fierce campaign against a bill to subsidize the state’s two nuclear reactors. In Pennsylvania, a coalition of natural gas producers and manufacturers has railed against state subsidies. “Competitive markets are working well on behalf of consumers,” said Steve Kratz, a spokesman for Citizens Against Nuclear Bailouts. “Any effort to favor one industry over another would just cause electricity prices to increase and hurt everyone from ratepayers to large-scale manufacturers.” Is saving nuclear worth the cost? From a climate…

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