Daily Archives: August 13, 2009

FT Energy Source

Guest post by Omar Abbosh

Europe has long been in the vanguard of the world’s response to climate change, as its 20/20/20 targets demonstrate. But as we head towards December’s Copenhagen climate talks, it is clear that Europe is not only failing to meet its own targets, but that its failure to introduce a true single energy market is undermining its ambitions to lead the post-Kyoto world.

Europe must generate well over 30 per cent of its electricity from renewables to meet its 2020 goals. That is more than triple today’s levels. Judging from the investment plans of Europe’s largest energy companies, we will undershoot that target by 40 per cent.

In a perfect single energy market, renewables investment should gravitate to the most cost effective locations, where most power can be generated at the lowest cost and with the least need for ‘base load’ back up from conventional fuel sources.  These locations are where the sources are in greatest abundance. Solar power would be concentrated in the Mediterranean and wind would be turning more turbines in the UK than anywhere else.

Kate Mackenzie

On FT Energy Source:

Natural gas, literally under pressure

Climate culture wars

Australian emissions trading scheme bites the dust, for now

Bjorn Lomborg answers readers’ questions on geo-engineering and the cost of avoiding climate change

Further reading:

US would have to double nuclear power by 2030 to meet its energy targets, says EIA (Washington Times)

Russia’s strong pursuit of Arctic resources makes rivals nervous (Forbes)

An update on ‘free energy’ survivor Blacklight (Bnet)

Cellulosic biofuel needs $90 a barrel to begin competing with oil (WSJ)

Failed hedge fund Amaranth settles over natural gas market manipulation fine (Dealbook)

Turning algae into oil, with help from fish (NY Times)

Poland unveils its nuclear power roadmap (OilVoice)

Visiting ConocoPhilips’ oil sands site (New Energy & Fuel)

Reliance exits Venezuela bid, leaving ONGC to find a new partner (Economic Times)

By Izabella Kaminska

US natural gas prices are refusing to budge higher with the rest of the energy complex:

US Natgas prices - FT

This has led some to wonder why, especially since natgas rig counts are actually decreasing. According to Baker Hughes, the number of rigs drilling for natural gas has dropped 58 per cent from a peak of 1,606 on September 12, 2008.

Nevertheless, as Bloomberg reported on the wire earlier this week, the US energy department was still predicting stockpiles to reach a record 3,800bn cubic feet by November.

Kate Mackenzie

With the global economic crisis pushing unemployment higher and an international climate change deadline looming, the old jobs-versus-the-environment dichotomy was bound to get a bit of a workout.

Despite the best efforts of many governments to link together economic stimuli, environmental measures and ‘green jobs’, those tensions are still welling up.

Kate Mackenzie

As expected, Australia’s emissions trading scheme, or CPRS (carbon pollution reduction scheme) was voted down in the Senate, despite polls showing the measures were supported by the majority of voters. This comes as no surprise to observers, and has seen bitter accusations of cynical politicking levelled by all parties.

The government’s insistence on a showdown vote, even though it was clear it would lose, is seen as an attempt to use ‘wedge politics’ against the conservative opposition, rating poorly in the polls. The defeat has been talked about as a ‘double dissolution’ trigger: if a bill approved by the House of Representatives, where the governing Labor party has a clear majority, is twice rejected in the Senate, this provides the government of the day with a means to dissolve both houses of parliament – including the entire Senate, which has terms twice as long as the lower house.

US natural gas industry fears damage from trading curbs
Worries that regulatory upheaval could dry up business (FT)

India plans green overhaul
Fresh impetus before key Copenhagen talks (FT)

IEA warning over oil trade rules distortion
Downplays link between speculators and oil prices (FT)

Subdued recovery in global oil demand
IEA warns evidence of recession bottoming out is ‘patchy’ (FT)

CAO trials European cross-border power auction
Trial of flow-based auction method will be held end of August (Argus)

Oil refiners opt for long-term strategy
With world energy demand low, some refineries face closure (FT)

Luck and oil boost BHP’s balance sheet
Company delivers final dividend of 41 cents a share (FT)

Sinochem to buy Emerald Energy
Chinese chemicals company to buy for £532m (FT)

Australia’s Arrow says it had talks on asset sales
Discussions included potential change of control (Reuters)

Pemex needs oil at $70/barrel to sustain projects, Kessel says
Focus for state-owned company on deep sea wells (Bloomberg)

Shell joins carbon capture plant race
Only major oil company to enter race in UK (FT)

Soco targets Africa as Asia lifts revenue
Production from Vietnam and Thailand buoyed revenues (FT)

Sterling Energy pumps up
Launch of deeply discounted fundraising expected (FT)

Energy Source is no longer updated but it remains open as an archive.

Insight into the financial, economic and policy aspects of energy and the environment.

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