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NATIONAL
February 15, 2014 | By Molly Hennessy-Fiske
CARRIZO SPRINGS, Texas - Just a few years ago this was a sleepy town of 5,600, and people eked out a living from the land. They farmed, worked ranches and leased their property to hunters to make a few dollars. Now, an oil and gas boom is transforming the economy of south Texas, turning Carrizo Springs into a busy city of at least 40,000. Texas oil companies, tapping a vast formation called the Eagle Ford shale, have nearly doubled oil production over the last two years and by next year are expected to produce 4 million barrels a day. That would catapult Texas ahead of Iran, Iraq and the United Arab Emirates to become the fifth-biggest oil producer in the world.
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SPORTS
February 3, 2014 | By Broderick Turner
  DENVER -- Clippers All-Star point guard Chris Paul is inching closer to playing basketball again, perhaps as soon as Friday night when his team hosts the Toronto Raptors at Staples Center. Paul, who has sat out 16 games because of a separated right shoulder, has been doing some shooting and running drills on his own. He hasn't practiced with the team because the Clippers haven't practiced recently. But after the Clippers had a shootaround Monday, Coach Doc Rivers said Paul "gets on the floor and we go over plays.
NATIONAL
January 30, 2014 | By Ralph Vartabedian
After investing an estimated $5 billion in recent years into oil exploration in the offshore Alaskan Arctic, Shell announced Thursday that it will abandon any renewed drilling effort this year. The company cited a federal appeals court decision last week that found the Interior Department had awarded permits to Shell based on inadequate information, a major triumph for environmental groups that had been battling Shell for years. “This is a disappointing outcome, but the lack of a clear path forward means that I am not prepared to commit further resources for drilling in Alaska in 2014,” said Ben van Beurden, who took over as the company's chief executive four weeks ago. “We will look to relevant agencies and the court to resolve their open legal issues as quickly as possible.” The statement leaves open Shell's option to resume exploration of the Arctic waters in the future.
NEWS
January 30, 2014 | By Scott Martelle
Shell's decision to give up on Arctic Ocean oil drilling for 2014 is good news for the environment. Now if only the oil companies - and the Obama administration - would give up altogether on the idea of drilling in such a remote and harsh place . Yes, there are arguments for ramping up domestic oil production to reduce our dependency on foreign oil, but the bigger issue is our dependence on oil, period. It's mind-boggling that we talk about trying to reduce global warming caused by burning fossil fuels while at the same time pursuing policies that will bring us more fossil fuels to burn, and at a cheaper price.
NATIONAL
January 22, 2014 | By Maria L. La Ganga
SEATTLE - The U.S. government violated the law when it opened millions of acres of the Arctic Ocean to offshore oil drilling, a federal appeals court ruled Wednesday, possibly delaying plans by companies such as Royal Dutch Shell to drill off the northwest coast of Alaska in the near future. The U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco ruled that the Interior Department did not properly evaluate the impact of oil development in the Chukchi Sea when it sold more than $2.6 billion in development leases in the environmentally sensitive area in 2008.
SPORTS
January 9, 2014 | By Broderick Turner
J.J. Redick eased his way onto the Clippers' court Thursday wearing his practice gear, his right hand wrapped lightly in a black brace. Redick took part in some shooting drills with teammates, another strong indication that the Clippers' starting shooting guard would be available to play Friday night when they host the Lakers at Staples Center. He has been out for almost seven weeks recovering from a broken right wrist and torn ligaments on the side of his right wrist. Clippers Coach Doc Rivers didn't give a definitive answer on whether Redick would play against the Lakers, saying before practice Thursday, "J.J.
SPORTS
January 2, 2014 | Chris Erskine
What you probably didn't know about Monday's Bowl Championship Series championship is that it will be played on an entirely fresh field, placed directly atop the one you saw Wednesday at the Rose Bowl. Like a blanket over another blanket. Senseless, right? By all accounts, that Rose Bowl field was still nearly flawless after Wednesday's game, but that didn't stop groundskeepers. Foolish perfectionism is a Pasadena birthright and one I don't condone. Yet that's exactly what is behind this all-new grass, which requires a Herculean effort on a frazzled five-day time frame.
HEALTH
December 20, 2013 | By Emily Dwass
When my son and daughter were youngsters, once a year I'd have a disagreement with their pediatric dentist. He wanted to do routine annual X-rays, and I would protest because neither child ever had any cavities. His response: Dental X-rays are an important diagnostic tool, representing a small speck in the sea of radiation that we receive by inhabiting planet Earth. It turns out we both were right. Dental X-rays are essential for detecting serious oral and systemic health problems, and generally the amount of radiation is very low. But new thinking on dental X-rays is that the "one size fits all" schedule is outdated.
BUSINESS
December 17, 2013 | By Shan Li
While the country has enjoyed an oil and natural gas boom thanks to new technologies, the Interior Department has failed to keep up and raise royalty rates to maximize revenue on public lands, according to government auditors. That's especially a problem for onshore drilling, where "Interior officials are currently unable to make timely adjustments to royalty rates," a report from the U.S. Government Accountability Office said. The Bureau of Land Management, for example, didn't go through with plans last year to bump royalty rates on public lands to 18.75% from 12.5%, the report said.
SCIENCE
December 9, 2013 | By Amina Khan
Billions of years ago, when early life was just taking hold on Earth, Mars was home to an ancient lake filled with the right chemical ingredients for life to thrive, scientists said Monday. Drilling into dry rock, NASA's Curiosity rover has discovered signs that Gale Crater was once watery, perhaps ringed with ice and snow, and could potentially have hosted an entire Martian biosphere based on a type of microbe found in caves on Earth. Such primitive organisms, called chemolithoautotrophs, feed on chemicals found in rocks and make their own energy.
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