Energy briefs

** U.S. federal energy regulators on Thursday approved Freeport LNG’s request to return ship loading to service at its long-idled Texas liquefied natural gas (LNG) export plant. Freeport, the second biggest U.S. LNG export plant, shut after a fire in June 2022.

** Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry said Thursday that he was concerned fossil fuel companies were doubling down on oil and gas while moving away from renewable energy investments.

** U.S. diesel prices have dropped this month and could go lower, analysts said, an unexpected swoon that coincided with the start of a British and European Union ban on Russian fuel imports.

** Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm met privately with the leader of the Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI), the group that funded a recent study used to justify calls for a gas stove ban.

** The world’s largest zinc smelter is betting on electric car batteries and clean energy to help decarbonize its fossil fuel-driven metals refining business and hopes US President Joe Biden’s landmark climate bill will create opportunities rather than obstacles.

** Duke Energy Corp. will take a $1.3 billion impairment loss on the sale of its commercial renewable business, which it now expects to close later this year, according to its earnings release Thursday.

** A Nevada company that recycles batteries for electric vehicles has won a $2 billion green energy loan from the Biden administration.



** Russia announced Friday that will cut oil production by 500,000 barrels per day next month after Western countries capped the price of its crude over its action in Ukraine.

** India has announced its first significant discovery of reserves of lithium, a rare mineral crucial for manufacturing electric vehicles. The government said on Thursday that 5.9m tonnes of the mineral had been discovered in Jammu and Kashmir.

** Exxon Mobil Corp. is creating a global trading division to compete more aggressively with the likes of BP Plc and Shell Plc in the high-risk, high-reward world of energy derivatives.

** A state-owned Dutch company that is Germany’s biggest electricity grid operator said Friday that it plans to hold talks on selling its entire German business to the government in Berlin, which welcomed the announcement.