The Department of Energy's (DOE) Office of Fossil Energy has awarded nearly $7 million to the University of Alaska at Fairbanks to study the use of polymer flooding as an enhanced oil recovery method for heavy oil targets on the Alaska North Slope (ANS) in the Milne Point Field. ANS reservoirs hold an estimated 20-25 billion bbl of heavy oil. The project is be managed by the National Energy Technology Laboratory.

SandRidge Energy Inc. is urging shareholders to vote for five of its nominees to the seven-member board and no more than two of the four independent nominees by its largest shareholder, Carl Icahn. In a letter, the company warned that Icahn "is seeking to gain control of SandRidge without paying an appropriate premium or participating in a competitive process." SandRidge is scheduled to hold its annual meeting on June 19.

A worker died after sustaining injuries on May 25 when an oil storage tank owned by West Virginia-based Hydrocarbon Well Services exploded in Doddridge County, WV, during operations to remove and replace it. Three other people were hurt, according to news reports. The crew was removing old aboveground tanks in a rural area. West Virginia regulators said the fire was likely caused by a torch. The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investigating.

The Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL)  which carries Bakken Shale oil from North Dakota to an Illinois hub, is marking its one year of operations on June 1. Sponsor Energy Transfer Partners LP said the pipe, which has transported more than 100 million bbl, is moving 500,000 b/d, or close to half of the Bakken’s daily production. A federal court case must still be resolved, but DAPL was allowed to continue operations pending further review.

EQT Corp., the largest U.S. natural gas producer after it acquired Rice Energy Inc., is evaluating another noncore acreage sale. The company said in a regulatory filing it is reviewing the possible sale of its production, gathering and pipeline assets in the Huron formation in West Virginia and Kentucky. The Huron announcement comes after the company sold noncore Permian Basin assets earlier this year for $64 million.

The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) has approved $738 million total to help fund actions by major state utilities to add more residential charging, direct current fast-charging, fleet infrastructure and charging infrastructure for medium- and heavy-duty vehicles. San Diego Gas and Electric is to receive $137 million from CPUC, while Pacific Gas and Electric Co. (PG&E) would receive a total of $258 million and Southern California Edison Co. is assigned $343 million. An additional $29.5 million is allocated for CPUC to evaluate the program.

Colorado efforts over the last six years have reduced volatile organic compound emissions by half in the Denver Metro/North Front Range area. Colorado Oil and Gas Association member companies operating in the nonattainment area are participating in a voluntary ozone-focused program. The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment confirmed that the levels of ozone have improved in the region, even as the population has steadily increased.

Alpine Silica plans to build two fracture sand mine facilities to serve customers in Texas and Oklahoma. The Kermit, TX-based firm, which already owns and operates one plant in West Texas with 3 million tons/year of capacity, plans to build a second plant in Van Horn, TX, and a third in Fay, OK, each with 3 million tons/year of capacity. Nearly 51 million tons of reserves are being added for the Fay project. No financial details were provided.