Daily Archives: December 1, 2010

Kiran Stacey

The Obama administration has decided not to grant any new leases in the eastern Gulf of Mexico, off the coast of Florida, for the foreseeable future, as a result of the BP spill.

AP broke the story, reporting that the ban would last seven years:

A senior administration official told The Associated Press on Wednesday that drilling leases won’t be considered in the waters off Florida as part of the change. He spoke on condition of anonymity because the decision hadn’t been announced yet.

He said that because of the BP spill, the administration now understands the need to elevate safety and environmental standards. Before the spill, the administration had considered a plan to allow drilling in the eastern Gulf.

One note of caution: the NY Times has the same story, but is reporting that the ban would last “at least for the next five years”. Presumably the picture will become clearer when Ken Salazar has made the formal announcement this afternoon.

Kiran Stacey

How strong a hand will Chris Huhne, the UK energy secretary, take into the Cancun talks? Will he be able to persuade foreign ministers and negotiators that the UK is playing its part?

As recently noted by the WWF’s EU climate policy tracker, the UK rates highly for its overall government policy, being the only EU country with a legally binding long-term commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 80 per cent by 2050.

But the problem is, British MPs are now warning that progress towards those targets is “unacceptably slow”.

Sheila McNulty

The majors have a history of selling what they believe are their “cast offs” to the small, independent oil and gas producers because they see little value in them. When they all left the US for global markets, writing the US off as “mature” back in the 1970s, the independents picked up the pieces and carried on.

Not only did many continue to make a profit over the years, but they came up with new technology and expertise that cracked the code to making shale gas and now shale oil economic. The US is now a virtual boom town for energy resources.

So it is interesting to see that the majors, now back in the US and rushing to pick up shale assets from the independents, are selling their conventional assets in both the US and Canada.

Kiran Stacey

Earlier this month, Eon announced its plans to raise €15bn over three years to pay off debt and fund an expansionary drive outside Europe.

At the time, Johannes Teyssen, the chief executive (pictured), wrote to shareholders:

Our objective is to sharpen Eon’s profile as an international energy specialist and to increase our earnings strength by placing it on a broader, more international foundation.

Just three weeks into that three-year period, the company has already made its first move, selling its 3.5 per cent stake in Gazprom for €3.4bn. Teyssen said today:

FT Energy Source

- Shell and Gazprom in oil and gas alliance – FT

- Gazprom and Vitol to start trading rainforest – The Telegraph

- Russia and Ukraine settle gas dispute – FT

- Nigerian corruption squad focuses on Shell and Halliburton – The Times (£)

- NWR’s $1.2bn Polish coal bid lapses – FT

- Pertamina drops pursuit of Medco Energi – Argus

- Green investment groups’ fury over BP’s oil sands plans – The Times (£)

- BP to suspend construction of Alaska rig for safety review – Bloomberg

- US Interior Dept to consider new fracking policy – WSJ (£)

- British MPs fire broadside over missed energy targets – The Times (£)

- Wood Group wins $875m Israeli power plant – FT

- Hopes dim on Michigan solar plant – WSJ (£)

Cancun news: day three

- America plays tough at Cancun – The Guardian

- UN talks seek to define duties of rich and poor countries – Reuters

- Canada already on track to be fossil of the year at Cancun – DeSmogBlog

- India steps up at Cancun – Michael Levi

- Let’s look beyond carbon – Tim Yeo, The Guardian

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