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Top Eagle Ford news stories: May 13-20

Business troubles dominated headlines this week. Recap the top Eagle Ford news stories below.

5. Feds: Pipeline company failed to detect California oil spill

FILE - In this May 21, 2015, file photo, an oil-covered bird flaps its wings amid at Refugio State Beach, north of Goleta, Calif. Plains All American Pipeline said in a statement Tuesday, May 17, 2016, that a California grand jury has indicted the company and one of its employees in connection with the pipeline break. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, File)

FILE – In this May 21, 2015, file photo, an oil-covered bird flaps its wings amid at Refugio State Beach, north of Goleta, Calif. Plains All American Pipeline said in a statement Tuesday, May 17, 2016, that a California grand jury has indicted the company and one of its employees in connection with the pipeline break. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, File)

LOS ANGELES (AP) — An oil pipeline company responsible for a massive oil spill on the California coast a year ago didn’t do enough to prevent corrosion and its operators didn’t detect and react to the spill quickly enough, federal regulators said Thursday.

Plains All American Pipeline also didn’t have adequate systems in place to signal there was a major leak in the pipeline running near the Santa Barbara County coast, the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration said in its final investigation report.

Read more about the Plains All American Pipeline oil spill here.

4. Scientists head out to study Shell oil spill in the Gulf

Image: Jamie Grant via Flickr

Image: Jamie Grant via Flickr.

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Researchers are heading out to study the effects of a Shell leak of about 88,200 gallons of oil off the Louisiana coast in the Gulf of Mexico, a scientist said on Monday.

Last Thursday, a leak from a pipeline at the Shell oil production field was spotted and cleanup vessels began to skim oil off the Gulf on Friday.

The cleanup ended Monday evening. The leak was contained after wells flowing into the pipeline were shut in.

Read more about ocean oil researchers here.

3. Moody’s downgrades Saudi Arabia on lower oil prices

FILE - In this May 8, 2014, file photo, a man works at a construction site in Jiddah, Saudi Arabia. Saudi Arabia's credit rating has been downgraded by Moody's because of the long and deep slump in oil prices. Moody's Investors Service said Saturday, May 14, 2016, that it also downgraded Gulf oil producers Bahrain and Oman. It left ratings unchanged for other Gulf states including Kuwait and Qatar. (AP Photo/Hasan Jamali, File)

FILE – In this May 8, 2014, file photo, a man works at a construction site in Jiddah, Saudi Arabia. Saudi Arabia’s credit rating has been downgraded by Moody’s because of the long and deep slump in oil prices. Moody’s Investors Service said Saturday, May 14, 2016, that it also downgraded Gulf oil producers Bahrain and Oman. It left ratings unchanged for other Gulf states including Kuwait and Qatar. (AP Photo/Hasan Jamali, File)

NEW YORK (AP) — Saudi Arabia’s credit rating has been downgraded by Moody’s because of the long and deep slump in oil prices.

Moody’s Investors Service said Saturday that it also downgraded Gulf oil producers Bahrain and Oman. It left ratings unchanged for other Gulf states including Kuwait and Qatar.

Saudi Arabia is the world’s largest oil exporter. Moody’s cut the country’s long-term issuer rating one notch to A1 from Aa3 after a review that began in March.

Read more about Saudi Arabia’s credit rating here.

2. SandRidge Energy files for bankruptcy with $4.1B in debt

Oklahoma City. Image via Wikimedia Commons.

Oklahoma City. Image via Wikimedia Commons.

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — SandRidge Energy filed for bankruptcy protection Monday, saying it hopes to convert $3.7 billion of long-term debt into equity while allowing the company to keep its operations going.

The Oklahoma City-based company filed the Chapter 11 paperwork in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Texas. The petroleum and natural gas exploration company said it had the support of creditors who hold more than two-thirds of its $4.1 billion in total debt.

Read more about SandRidge Energy here.

1. Oil and gas company founded by Aubrey McClendon to close

aubrey-mcclendon-2-1.jpg-1-620x330-1

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — American Energy Partners, the Oklahoma City-based oil and natural gas company founded by the late energy tycoon Aubrey McClendon, is shutting down.

The company’s leadership team released a statement Wednesday saying it had decided to wind down operations but the five independent companies it had launched wouldn’t be affected.

McClendon co-founded Chesapeake Energy and served as its CEO before stepping down in 2013 and founding American Energy Partners.

Read more about American Energy Partners here.

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