In this week's news, Suncor production should be back to normal by the end of the month, and Iowa state regulators gave permission to begin construction on the Bakken pipeline.

Iowa state regulators gave permission June 6 for construction to start on the Bakken oil pipeline, despite a complaint by the Sierra Club that the action is illegal.

The approval by the Iowa Utilities Board authorizes Texas-based Dakota Access to begin digging on land outside the jurisdiction of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, which hasn’t granted permits for water crossings, and where other authorizations have been provided. The pipeline will cross primarily farmland in Iowa, according to The Des Moines Register.

The vote to allow construction to proceed was 2-1 with the meeting lasting only five minutes. Construction started last month on the $3.78 billion underground pipeline project in North Dakota, South Dakota and Illinois.

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Suncor Production Should Be Back to Normal By End of Month
After wildfires forced Suncor Energy to shut down production, Canada’s largest oil company says it expects to ramp up its oilsands production all the way back to “normal” rates by the end of the month.

Suncor announced its plans June 6, and said it would return to “pre-fire” production rates within a week at its mining operations and by the third week of June at its steam-based plant.

Royal Dutch Shell Plans Petrochemical Plant in Pennsylvania
Royal Dutch Shell PLC gave the go-ahead for a multibillion-dollar petrochemical plant in Pennsylvania.

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The company first announced in 2012 that it was considering building a plant about 30 miles north of Pittsburgh in an industrial area along the Ohio River. The plant is expected to create 6,000 construction jobs and 600 permanent jobs and draw chemical companies and other manufacturers to the region, according to The Wall Street Journal.

This is welcome news for the struggling shale play area that has been hit hard by low energy prices, causing several thousand layoffs.

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