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South Portland puts tar sands issue to vote
The Portland Press Herald
The Portland City Council voted to ask voters in November whether they want an ordinance to pre-emptively prevent so-called tar sands oil from flowing through the city. "It's now in the citizens' hands," said Mayor Tom Blake after the vote around 11 p.m. The council could have approved the ordinance itself, but chose instead to put it on the Nov. 5 ballot.
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MEMA member spotlight: Another round of donations to the MTEC lab facility
Dear MEMA Members,
It is with great enthusiasm that we send a sincere thank you to the following individuals and companies for their recent donations to MEMA Technical Education Center. These charitable contributions allow MTEC's training facility to remain competitive in the technical education sector, and allow the lab to stand out from others across the state. As we pride ourselves on quality training, these donations ensure that our graduates are armed not only with knowledge of current practices, but also with the hands-on skills necessary to stay ahead in today's ever-evolving industry.
MTEC to offer $700 education grant toward new HVAC professional program
MTEC instructors have strategically developed a three month long HVAC course that will prepare students to sit for Maine State licensing exams in an extremely accelerated time frame. For example, completion of the six week long Oil Module will eliminate six months of apprenticeship time required by the state for licensing. This new program will also provide students with nationally recognized EPA Certification, allowing them to preparedly seek employment in what is quietly becoming one of New England's leading workforces.
Canada to build rail network for increased US oil sales
Canada, currently the biggest source of U.S. energy imports, is seeking to expand that role. Calgary-based TORQ Transloading has proposed building a $100-million rail hub able to ship 168,000 barrels of oil per day to U.S. markets in Kerrobert, Saskatchewan.
Fuel assistance applications now taken
The Franklin Sun Journal
Western Maine Community Action and the ECU HEAT program are gearing up to help Franklin County households with their heating needs this winter. Applications for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program will be taken at Western Maine Community Action in East Wilton.
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Tar-sands opponents dealt blow by South Portland Planning Board
Keep Me Current
Whether they call in tar sands, oil sands, or diluted bitumen, South Portland residents and other regional environmentalists eager to keep the product out of local ports were dealt a serious setback recently.
State to ask for natural gas bids again
The state once again will seek bidders to provide natural gas to state facilities in central Maine. The Bureau of General Services announced it is seeking bidders to provide natural gas distribution services to state-owned buildings in Augusta, Hallowell, Waterville and Vassalboro.
Do crude oil shipments make rail less safe?
Energy Trends Insider
It's been just over a month since a train loaded with crude oil from North Dakota derailed and exploded in the Canadian town of Lac-Megantic, Quebec, killing an estimated 47 residents. In the interval since the accident, the relevant authorities have focused on ascertaining the cause of the accident and determining how best to improve rail safety. That conversation would benefit from some context that appears to be absent.
Top Saudi investor says US energy boom could doom kingdom's economy
According to the Wall Street Journal, Saudi billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal warned in a letter to Saudi Oil Minister Ali al-Naimi and others that the U.S. boom of shale oil and gas will reduce its thirst for Saudi crude oil.
API calls on EPA to lower 2014 ethanol mandate
CSP Daily News
The American Petroleum Institute has filed a waiver request for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to lower the ethanol mandate to below 10 percent of gasoline demand for 2014. API Downstream Group director Bob Greco said the move is designed to protect consumers and the U.S. economy.
New oil pipeline planned along Maine-Canada border
The Portland Press Herald
A Canadian company announced plans for a $12 billion pipeline capable of transporting 1.1 million barrels of crude oil per day — including the controversial "tar sands" oil from Alberta — over the northern tip of Maine and down its eastern border with New Brunswick.
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