News bites: Shell offshore drilling rig grounded in Alaska

From the Chronicle:

The episode also cast doubt on whether Shell Oil Co. will be able to resume its hunt for Arctic oil this year.

The 29-year-old Kulluk conical drilling unit was unmanned when it plowed into rocks on the southeast side of Sitkalidak Island Monday night in Alaska, and there were no major injuries. But Coast Guard and Shell officials were still battling stormy seas Tuesday to assess the full extent of environmental damage and figure out a plan for recovering the stranded rig.

Shell pursued drilling in Alaska’s Beaufort and Chukchi seas last summer, but had to postpone its plans because of a series of equipment-related delays and a deadline to exit the waters before the return of winter ice.

In other oil news, oil prices in New York jumped to the highest level in nearly three months after the House and the Senate agreed on a deal to avoid the “fiscal cliff,” Bloomberg reports.

The Atlantic discusses former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s (R) legacy on climate change in the United States.

Bloomberg previews the forthcoming lobbying battle for energy incentives in possible tax overhaul negotiations next Congress.