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The Wall Street Journal: Oil News Roundup: November 20, 2006 5:15 p.m.


New York crude-oil futures fell slightly in quiet trade, pressured by continuing doubts about OPEC production cuts, as well as forecasts for seasonally warm weather. But the switch to a new front-month contract meant prices ended the day about $3 a barrel higher than Friday’s settlement. Here is Monday’s roundup of oil and energy news:

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EU PRODS RUSSIA ON ENERGY: The European Union urged Russia and other neighbors to commit to long-term energy contracts that will guarantee them customers and investments while securing affordable oil and natural gas supplies for the EU. The appeal, which came at the start of a two-day conference of officials from the EU and oil and gas exporting nations, underscored Western Europe’s desire to make energy a top priority at a time when its demand is growing, its own supplies are dwindling and world prices are high.

•U.S. Prods IEAE on Iran: The U.S. said it would accept Iran’s request for U.N. aid on seven nuclear projects but urged the International Atomic Energy Agency to deny assistance for a plutonium-producing reactor that can be used to make a bomb.

•Nigerian Hostages Released: Italian energy giant Eni said a two-week armed siege at a Nigerian crude oil pumping station it operates ended late Sunday, and that all hostages were released unharmed.

•More Nigerian Violence: Armed men forced their way into the offices of a Nigerian aid group in the southern oil hub of Port Harcourt, killing two people and wounding two others, the organization’s head said.

•Methane Levels Flatten: In what is possibly a sign that one contributor to global warming is under control, a new study finds levels of atmospheric methane have flattened in recent years after decades of growth, CNET reports. and its sister websites,,,,, and are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

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