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Best of the Blogs, Energy: Nexen Inc. Acquired by CNOOC for $15 Billion


Plus, how bigger is better for the environment, and a new hybrid at no extra cost.

CBC News

Link: China's CNOOC Offers $15B for Calgary Oil Firm Nexen

"Calgary-based oil and gas firm Nexen Inc. (NXY) has agreed to be acquired by China National Offshore Oil Company (CEO) in a $15.1 billion US cash deal.

"State-owned CNOOC Ltd. will pay $27.50 per Nexen share. That price makes the deal the largest foreign transaction that Beijing has ever attempted.

"'This transaction will allow for significant investment in our business and opens the door to new opportunities for our employees,' Nexen's CEO Kevin Reinhart said in a release.

"Although Nexen's board is recommending the deal, the takeover must be approved by shareholders and various regulatory bodies. In particular, the deal will require the federal government's sign-off in Ottawa under the Investment Canada Act, which requires some foreign takeovers of Canadian companies to pass the "net benefit test" of being deemed a useful contribution to Canada's economy."

The Globe And Mail
Link: Gateway Pipeline Risks Exceed Rewards, BC Premier Says

"British Columbia Premier Christy Clark is warning that the environmental risks associated with a plan to sell Canadian oil to Asia through the Northern Gateway pipeline outweigh the economic benefits, leaving her at odds with the federal and Alberta governments.

"'The ability to export Canada's oil and gas resources from the west coast, be it to Asia, Western US, or otherwise is vital to the BC economy, as well as the national economy,' said Travis Davies, the spokesman for the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers. 'We have world-class energy resources, we are competing on the world stage, and we need access to world markets.'"

National Geographic: The Great Energy Challenge
Link: Sizing Up Wind Energy: Bigger Means Greener, Study Says

"One of the most popular trends in sustainable living is to go small: Live in a small house. Drive a small car. Have a small carbon footprint. So it seems contradictory that by going big-really big-energy equipment can become better for the environment.
But that's the case with wind turbines, according to a new study by the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich.

"The report, published in the American Chemical Society's journal, Environmental Science & Technology, looked at the energy it took to build, transport, maintain, and dispose of turbines, as well as the electricity the turbines fed into Europe's power grid.

"Using higher-capacity models reduces the number of turbines needed for a wind farm, says Fort Felker, director of the wind technology center at the US Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden, Colorado. For example, at today's capacities, 500 super-sized turbines could be installed instead of 1,000 smaller ones. By generating more energy with fewer machines, giant turbines can help reduce the price of wind power."

New York Times: Green
Link: When Beijing Cleared the Air

"As the Olympic Games draw near in London and some fret about the environmental impact, it might be instructive to look back on the measures taken when Beijing played host in 2008.

"Four years later, scientists led by Helen M. Worden at the federal government's National Center for Atmospheric Research have roughly quantified the extent to which the Beijing government's temporary crackdown on urban traffic reduced carbon dioxide levels.

"Even with significant uncertainties factored in, the amount is striking. An effort by one city (the world's 19th most populous metropolitan area, with 12.5 million people) led to emissions reductions that, if made permanent and multiplied by 360, would be enough to avoid the concentrations of greenhouse gases that could lead to dangerous levels of warming."

Autoblog Green
Link: 2013 Lincoln MKZ Configurator Comes Alive, Hybrid Option at No Extra Cost

"Lincoln (F) has officially fired up the configurator for the 2013 MKZ, keeping the option sheet fairly simple with a total of five trim packages. The party gets started with Premiere trim, which includes SYNC with MyLincoln Touch, a huge 10.1-inch LCD information screen and leather seating. Stepping up to Select trim will throw in a rear-view camera, wood steering wheel and new LED accent lighting outside for an additional $1,100.

"The MKZ offers buyers a total of five drivetrain options, from a 2.0-liter turbocharged EcoBoost four-cylinder or a 3.7-liter V6 in either front- or all-wheel drive configuration to a 2.0-liter hybrid. Interestingly enough, choosing the gas-electric powertrain doesn't add anything to the price, as it's the exact same price as the base engine, the 2.0-liter EcoBoost, for all trim levels. Head over to the configurator to have a look for yourself."
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