DrumBeat: March 24, 2007
Posted by Leanan on March 24, 2007 - 9:32am
Rising sea levels and melting polar ice-sheets are at upper limits of projections, leaving some human population centres already unable to cope, top world scientists say as they analyse latest satellite data.
..."Observations are in the very upper edge of the projections," leading Australian marine scientist John Church said.
"I feel that we're getting uncomfortably close to threshold," said Church, of the CSIRO's Marine and Atmospheric Research.
The energy crisis has rocketed from a textbook concept into the most pressing political issue of our time. Future energy supplies are increasingly vulnerable and global consumption is expected to escalate dramatically, increasing by 71% in 2030 and continuing to rise. Energy shortages would have a dramatic impact on every area of modern life: business, transport, food, health and communications. This looming crisis has drawn scientific minds and encouraged radical research into arcane technologies, such as the once-neglected area of nuclear fusion.
Nuclear power is STILL not a solution to our energy needs OR our environmental needs. It does not solve global warming. It's a killer.
After seeing the cost of gasoline rose 20 cents per gallon in the past two weeks, Gov. Janet Napolitano wants federal energy officials to investigate the sudden spike in energy prices that is hitting Arizona.
Iran, embroiled in a nuclear row with Washington, is asking more clients to pay for oil in currencies other than the dollar and 60 per cent or more of its crude income is in other units, an official said yesterday.
BP PLC's Russian venture unexpectedly revealed plans to bid for a 9.44% stake in state-owned oil producer OAO Rosneft Friday, just hours before top BP executives including Chief Executive John Browne met with Russian President Vladimir Putin for talks aimed at easing BP's expansion into Russia.
With Prudhoe Bay oil reserves in decline 6 percent a year, it is essential that new areas be opened for oil exploration and development. With state budget surpluses this year and oil throughput declining in the trans-Alaska oil pipeline, we will be facing budget deficits as early as next year.
There is currently no strategy or proposal on the table for the needed energy conversion to renewable sources for transportation and energy production. For all the hoopla about Al Gore's movie "An Inconvenient Truth" and given Senator Gore's own background in the Executive and Legislative branches of the Federal Government, there is little in the way of concrete policy proposals that have been introduced as a cornerstone of a new energy policy.
China is on course to overtake the United States this year as the world's biggest carbon emitter, estimates based on Chinese energy data show, potentially pressuring Beijing to take more action on climate change.
The world should invest 10 billion dollars annually to halve deforestation in the fight against global warming, Nicholas Stern, the author of a key climate change report, said Friday.
This week over 300 of the senior industry, investor and policy figures in the global wave and tidal energy sector gathered in the QEII Centre in Westminster to hear a rallying call and message of optimism for this major energy market of the future.
Businesses in the country would have to brace themselves for more difficult times ahead with the power rationing exercise set to worsen as the country's energy crisis deepens.
Many businesses have already either shut or cut down drastically on production following the non availability of power in adequate supplies.
A raid on suspected terrorists in northern Iraq failed after Iraqi soldiers ran out of gas and couldn’t send half their men to the mission, a U.S. commander says.
Foreign energy companies can't book Bolivian oil and gas reserves as theirs, Bolivian Hydrocarbons Minister Carlos Villegas said, the El Diario newspaper reported Friday.
...Villegas added companies that continue to book Bolivian reserves as theirs will be expelled from Bolivia.
Called Oil-15, or O-15, the new order put together by Daniel Yergin, chairman of Cambridge Energy Research Associates, includes all OPEC states — barring Indonesia — and includes five others that have the highest potential to increase supplies by 2015. Besides Canada, they are Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Brazil and Russia. The group is projected to produce 72.7 million barrels per day, or 69 per cent of total global oil output.
The Mexican Oil Enterprise (PEMEX) will have to invest between eight and nine billion dollars additionally a year to just maintain crude and natural gas production, asserted an official from that branch.
Building a strategic partnership with Iraq is important for Tokyo as Iraq's oil supply and its stability greatly affects the national interests of Japan, which is heavily dependent on energy resources from the Middle East.
Based on experience from previous oil and gas projects in Burma, Human Rights Watch expressed concern that the proposed construction of overland pipelines to transport the gas will involve the use of forced labor, and result in illegal land confiscation, forced displacement, and unnecessary use of force against villagers. Revenue from gas sales would also serve to entrench the brutal military rule in the country.
As the California Solar Initiative (CSI) moves into its fourth month, solar businesses in the state are still figuring out how to maneuver through the changing industry landscape and handle some of the issues that have arisen from the state-wide program.
A top venture capitalist and a prominent biotechnology industry business consultant today both said that the biofuels industry is poised for exceptional growth and that ethanol from cellulose appears to be the most promising alternative fuel over the long-term. During keynote speeches at the World Congress on Industrial Biotechnology and Bioprocessing, Vinod Khosla of Khosla Ventures and Dr. Jens Riese of McKinsey & Co. also highlighted the significant reductions in greenhouse gas emissions achievable with ethanol from cellulose.
The government plans to produce bio-energy by utilising biomass plants, residues like wheat straw, rice husk, cotton sticks, corn cobs, kallar grass and other salt tolerant plants.
Mexico will control domestic corn prices further to make sure rising global costs do not push inflation up and hurt consumers, President Felipe Calderon said on Thursday.
There are biofuel crops that can be grown with much less energy and chemicals than the food crops we currently use for biofuels. And they can be grown on our less fertile land, especially land that has been degraded by farming. This would decrease competition between food and biofuel. The United States has about 60 million acres of such land -- in the Conservation Reserve Program, road edge rights-of-way and abandoned farmlands.
Another snag has cropped up in the Iran-Pakistan-India (IPI) project, which must be handled carefully. India has threatened to pull out of the $7 billion dollar gas pipeline project if Islamabad does not bring down the transit fees it wants to charge for allowing the pipeline to pass through its territory to India. The pipeline is going to be 1,036-km long inside Pakistan and the task of looking after it will be Islamabad’s. It will pass through areas that will have to be ‘tamed’ at great developmental expense and careful political bargaining with local stakeholders.
India's hopes of tapping into Myanmar's gas resources might have hit a dead end, with Yangon pitching for China instead. India's problems with Myanmar follow US moves to strangle the US$7.4 billion Iran-Pakistan-India pipeline.
"The Iraqi oil industry has been stuck for the last couple of years." says Manoucher Takin, an analyst at the Centre for Global Energy Studies in London.
"Nothing has really changed.
"It's not that officials have done nothing. The problem is, they can't do much because of the security situation."
But a lot of us who are managing data centers are still in the same boat we were in three years ago. Only the situation is much worse. I completely underestimated the long term impact of not enough physical consolidation (buildings, data centers, storage, servers, etc.).
The first full year of Peak Oil, that is structural undersupply simultaneously affecting markets in different world locations, is at minimum possible, and increasingly probable for June 2007-June 2008.
This may be an on-again/off-again phenomenon, but will surely add more power to oil price volatility. Volatility, and downside risk for the near-term oil price is due to many factors, notably the following...
The news that China is about to buy all the natural gas from Burma’s offshore wells clearly shows how helpless Korea is against Asia’s super-power. Energy experts have criticized the government for failing to take necessary measures and instead bragging about its dubious energy achievement. In a nutshell, Korea has failed in its energy diplomacy.
Across the UK, this energy gap equates to a 31.5 per cent shortage at peak demand by 2020. This is the equivalent to an area the size of Scotland and then stretching all the way down to the Humber estuary being without power in peak winter periods.
Ecuador is losing 500,000 U.S. dollars every day as a result of protests by local residents at Amazon-based production sites of Brazilian state oil company Petrobras, President Rafael Correa said Friday.
Petrobras stopped pumping crude oil eight days ago in the Amazon area when local people started protesting and damaging pipelines at oil production sites, demanding the hiring of local residents, rehabilitation of local roads and other services.
President Hugo Chavez said China is set to rival the United States as Venezuela's top oil buyer as he announced new plans with the Asian powerhouse to jointly ship oil, build refineries and expand crude production.
US Congress Holds Hearing on Oil Dependence (with downloadable RealMedia files)
The U.S. Congress has held a hearing Thursday on how rising global demand for oil is affecting U.S. national security. Some lawmakers and energy experts say America's dependence on oil imports limits the ability of the United States to meet its foreign policy goals.
Final energy consumption in the EU-25 countries increased by 12.6% between 1990 and 2004, according to the European Environment Agency. Between 2003 and 2004, total final energy consumption grew by 1.1%. The fastest growing sector is transport, followed by households and services.