Daily Archives: March 2, 2010

Ed Crooks

BP’s annual strategy presentation was delivered to analysts and investors on Tuesday, with the key headlines about the planned efficiency savings and production growth released beforehand.

Much of this is along the lines indicated at BP’s fourth quarter results. There is more detail in the press release, and a lot more in the slides and the webcast.

There was also a first appearance from Carl-Henric Svanberg, BP’s chairman, who sat silent throughout, but signed off saying: “I think your guys did well.”

Overall, the theme from Tony Hayward, the CEO, is that BP has great assets, in part thanks to the deals of the past decade, such as the takeovers of Amoco and Arco and the creation of TNK-BP, but is still not managing them as well as it could.

Kate Mackenzie

On FT Energy Source:

- US consumers: Spending their savings on gasoline

- A little of this… More US climate bill developments

- Gas market changes could hurt BP as well as Gazprom

- Scientists under scrutiny at ‘climategate’ hearing

- China coal *alert*

- Falklands oil dispute and subsidised nuclear bonds in Energy headlines

Further reading:

- Nabucco vs Southstream: the economics behind the geopolitics

- Small nuclear plants leaks less radioactive than nat gas drilling?

- The US lawyer tackling the EU over environment failings

- Washington is playing catch-up on the Eurasian energy/geopolitics nexus

- Why Walmart’s carbon cuts will make a world of difference

- Remember when Gazprom talked of becoming a trillion-dollar company…

- Separating the IPCC from climate science

Kate Mackenzie

A couple of stories late last week suggest that after months of uncertainty, the three senators leading a bipartisan push for climate legislation might be abandoning cap-and-trade in favour of a kind of sectoral mish-mash of the three main approaches to pricing carbon: cap-and-trade, cap-and-dividend, and a carbon tax.

Cap-and-trade is still floundering in US Congress, and Senators Lindsey Graham, John Kerry and Joe Lieberman are running very short of time to get a bill passed this year.

The Washington Post reports that Senator Lindsey Graham, the Republican in the trio, declared “cap-and-trade is dead” , citing unnamed participants in a meeting with Graham last Wednesday.

Kate Mackenzie

How much are Americans spending on gasoline – and is it too much, given the state of the economy?

Stephen Schork of the Schork Report has taken another look at the energy component of the latest personal consumption expenditure data, and found some worrying signs compared to other macro-economic figures.

Firstly, he says, the optimistic rumblings around the latest data set are unwarranted:

For instance, take the 0.1% increase in gross income. Factor in taxation and we find that disposable income (the amount consumers have to save or spend) actually dropped 0.4% between December and January. Where did people find the cash for increased expenditure? They broke open the piggy bank – total savings dropped by 21.5% to the lowest point since October 2008, while saving as a percentage of total disposable income fell from 4.22% in December to 3.32% in January. The talking heads seem to believe that low interest rates are encouraging people to spend money instead of saving it, and take out loans (or credit card debt) to fund high definition TV’s, a bullish indicator.

Schork doesn’t buy this explanation – there are too many bearish indicators, he says, such as consumer confidence and average duration of unemployment.

Kate Mackenzie

Phil Jones, head of the University of East Anglia’s Climate Research Unit, admitted he had “obviously written some very awful e-mails” at Monday’s parliamentary hearing into the stolen emails affair.

It’s a striking quote. But what else happened at the Science and Technology Committee hearing?

Firstly, the hearing was not on the merits of climate science itself, although Lord Nigel Lawson, a former UK chancellor who has written a book sceptical of climate change, was one of those on the committee putting questions to scientists and other officials. The terms of reference concern the implications for scientific integrity, the scope of the UEA’s own inquiry, and the independence of the other two key international climate data sets, Nasa and NOAA.

Kate Mackenzie

Climate expert admits ‘awful emails’ (FT)

US offers to mediate in Falklands oil dispute (FT)

Georgia utility to sell subsidised nuclear bonds (FT)

BP close to agreeing $200m shale gas deal (FT)

Lyondell rejects Reliance bid (Bloomberg)

China looks to Arctic shipping routes, possibly resources (FT)

Green energy programme drafted, says official (China Daily)

Petrobras on track for ultradeep GoM project (Houston Chronicle)

Eon puts US supply arms up for sale (FT)

ExxonMobil’s spending exceeds cashflow in 2009 (WSJ)

New IAEA head takes tougher line (FT)

Israel presses China over Iran sanctions (FT)

House Republicans plan to offer GHG endangerment reduction (Argus)

A warning on Europe’s forests (NYT)

West Virginia approves permit for CTL plant (Argus)

Saudi Arabia may nearly double supply of oil to India (Bloomberg)

Aramco steps up gas chase (UpstreamOnline)

BP adds non-executive director (BP)

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

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