Daily Archives: November 15, 2010

Kiran Stacey

We newspaper journalists are used to lamenting the decline of newsprint – of watching slumping readership numbers with a sense of impending doom (obviously that applies less to us bloggers).

But one industry’s pain is another’s opportunity, and it seems this decline is reason for celebration among biomass-fuelled energy providers.

Pasi Laine, president of energy and environmental technology at Metso, the Finnish company which makes (among other things) boilers for biomass plants, tells me that the lack of demand for paper from the newspaper industry is freeing up forest to be used as fuel for energy plants. These trees were planted decades ago of course, assuming that newsprint demand would remain relatively stable.

One paper mill at Shotton has built a biomass boiler on its site to burn the waste produced from making recycled newsprint. But this new idea takes out that stage altogether.

What’s more, as wood is a renewable fuel source and produces less CO2 than oil, gas or coal, this development could be good news for the planet. But maybe less so for us beleagured reporters…

What’s fuelling Africa’s economic growth? Well, it’s fuel, partly. Whether you’re talking shipments of commodities overseas, or imported goods being snapped up by middle class Africans, the stuff mostly gets moved by truck on rough roads – and for that you need petrol.

That rising demand is one reason why a unit of Trafigura, a commodities trader, has agreed to pay $296m for BP’s petrol station and supply businesses in parts of southern Africa.

FT Energy Source

- Record US ethanol exports raise tax issue – FT

- Energy companies to face cuts in US subsidies – Barrons

- Gazprom expansion fuels hiring spree – FT

- BP assets boost Trafigura – FT

- BP’s Tony Hayward to set up energy advisory business – The Telegraph

- Greenland wants $2bn bond from oil firms for Arctic drilling – The Guardian

- Is ‘peak oil’ behind us? – NY Times Green blog

- Dominance of Petrobras may slow Brazil’s development – FT Special Report

- Plans to beef up Petrobras give cause for concern – FT Special Report

- Australia considers international carbon price policies – Argus

- Government blinks first in UK’s nuclear stand off – The Telegraph

- Ireland aims to capitalise on wave power – FT

- Is there a ‘Made in Germany’ premium for solar? – Reuters

- One third of UK electricity ‘will be green in a decade’ – The Times (£)

- Merseyside tipped as offshore wind hub – FT

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