Coal

India may be catching up with China in terms of GDP growth but it still lags far behind on electricity provision. The contrast between the two global heavyweights is stark: nearly 404m Indians currently live without any electricity at all, compared to 8m Chinese.

What’s more, while China is projected to achieve universal electrification by 2015, India won’t be fully electrified until 2030, according to a new report from the International Energy Agency.

Sheila McNulty

As if there were not enough gas in the US.

The US Geological Survey has discovered that much of what it thought was oil in the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska is actually gas. It says in a new report that new estimates are for 896m barrels of conventional, undiscovered oil and 53 trillion cubic feet of conventional, undiscovered, non-associated gas within the reserve and adjacent state waters.

This compares with estimates made in 2002 of 10.6bn barrels of oil. The new estimate, roughly 10 per cent of the 2002 estimate, is due primarily to new data from recent exploration drilling that revealed gas rather than oil in much of the reserve. Nonetheless, the new assessment also indicates 8 trillion cubic feet less gas than the 2002 estimate of 61 trillion cubic feet of undiscovered, conventional, non-associated gas. Non-associated means there is little to no crude oil in the reservoir.

Yet that is still a surfeit of gas and, as such, is just one more reason why the US should take advantage of its broad gas reserves by offering government incentives to build an energy infrastructure to use its gas.

Kiran Stacey

With just a week to go until the US midterms, the narrative seems to have been set: the Republicans are going to do well because of anger at the Obama administration towards two things in particular: a lack of jobs and the healthcare bill.

But there may be another element at play which is feeding into this heady mix: the cap-and-trade bill.

Yesterday, the Journal published an interesting article about the way in which Democratic Congressman Rick Boucher’s support for the bill is losing him votes in his native Virginia. Apparently locals are angry that Boucher voted for a bill that they regard as anti-coal.

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