Bundestag Votes On Minimum Wage Law

Germany is drafting strict anti-fracking regulations, but fracking opponents say the current plan doesn’t go far enough, citing loopholes regarding depth and fracking fluid chemistry. “Although the proposed policy has the protection of public health and drinking water as its highest priority, the fracking ban only applies at a depth shallower than 3000 meters. Additionally, the testing of technology is permitted if the fracking liquid won’t endanger the groundwater.” [Deutsche Welle]

Algeria plans to arrest its recent natural gas production decline when state-owned Sontatrach starts up 6 new fields over the next few years. Most of these new fields have been developed in partnership with European operators including Repsol, Total, GDF, Edison and RWE-DEA. [Reuters]

Shipments of crude oil by rail have significantly increased in recent years – part of a larger trend unfolding throughout the US – and regulators are seeking to manage the risks associated with greater volumes of oil moving by railroad. Wyoming, a state with a long history of oil and gas development, appears less concerned with the trend than some other jurisdictions less accustomed to oil and gas activity. [Casper Star-Tribune]