Drumbeat: August 6, 2011
Posted by Leanan on August 6, 2011 - 10:15am
Chief executive of the China-based think-tank Civic Exchange, Christine Loh, noted that energy policy is dominated by a supply-led mind set whereby the default response to energy shortages is building more power plants. This has led to a range of exploitative industries to fix energy problems, and to the neglect of a “demand-led mindset” which requires reducing the amount of energy needed, she said.
The region “must improve energy literacy,” said Ms Loh, adding that Asean ministers should listen to what scientists are saying about limited resources. She noted that with peak oil widely accepted as imminent, experts are now beginning to talk about the eventuality of peak coal and peak natural gas supply.
Oil rose for the first time in six days in New York and curbed the biggest weekly drop in three months as the U.S. added more jobs than forecast in July and the Italian government said it will speed up austerity measures.
NEW YORK – This week's scary stock market plunge has a silver lining: Gasoline is about to get cheaper.
That's because the same fears that forced a sell-off on Wall Street also brought down the price of oil.
KANSAS CITY, Mo.— The United States was so dependent on foreign oil that by 2008 it imported two-thirds of what the country’s refineries needed to produce enough gasoline, diesel and the other petroleum products to meet the country's needs.
But recently the federal Energy Information Administration reported that in 2010 imports had fallen far more than many realized — to 49 percent of the country’s needs.
TEHRAN (Reuters) - Iran will need some $40 billion this year to spur the development of oil and gas fields it shares with neighbouring countries, Oil Minister Rostam Qasemi said in his first interview since being appointed to the post, published on Saturday.
Syrians rallied in cities across the country demonstrating against the rule of President Bashar al- Assad as the U.S. advised its citizens to leave the country because of the unrest.
Tens of thousands of people marched yesterday in Aleppo, Homs, Qamishli, Deir Al Zour and the northern province of Idlib, said Mahmoud Merhi, head of the Arab Organization for Human Rights, and Ammar Qurabi of the National Organization for Human Rights.
Somali insurgents linked to al-Qaeda withdrew from the capital, Mogadishu, where about 100,000 people have arrived in the past two months seeking food, water and shelter amid a famine in parts of the war-torn country.
We may be relying heavily on an ever-increasing amount of Canadian crude to meet our oil fix, but Canada's natural gas troubles will only worsen as production from the oil sands grows to more than five million barrels per day in the coming decade. (Natural gas plays a vital role in the extraction process of deeply-buried bitumen.)
Remember, more than three-quarters of Alberta's oil production comes from oil sands operations.
As if that weren't enough, Canada isn't the only country crossing her fingers for more U.S. natural gas. South of the border, Mexico is also relying more on our supply.
LONDON (Reuters Life!) - Public bicycle sharing schemes such as Barcelona's "Bicing" program or London's "Boris Bikes" save lives and reduce greenhouse gas emissions, according to a study on Friday.
Bike schemes are becoming increasingly popular in cities around the world, with more than 360 already running, but their main aim is usually to ease congestion rather than boost health.
As record levels of power demand were set in Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma, New Mexico and part of Texas, grids were not equipped to help one another much.
TOKYO — Prime Minister Naoto Kan removed three top officials in charge of Japanese nuclear energy policy on Thursday, taking aim at the cozy ties between regulators and the power industry that were exposed after the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant accident.
Vancouver's Vision council has called the bluff of neighbourhood activists who have been leading a series of recent battles against development proposals by arguing that neighbourhoods can't accept new density and accommodate change without proper plans in place. Those plans will soon arrive.
In a couple of decades we may be looking at the end of life as we know it on this planet. "What is your personal carrying capacity for grief, rage, despair?" asks Keith in the first chapter. It's not just global warming but a confluence of catastrophes that cannot be blamed on Republicans or climate deniers or rich people with their personal jets, but on all of us, together. The culprit is industrial civilization, say the writers. "This culture destroys landbases. That's what it does," writes Jensen. "And it won't stop because we ask it nicely."
Do concerns about water shortages, peak oil, species extinction, and deforestation keep you up at night? Do you experience dread thinking about overpopulation and unchecked consumption? Have you or your family ever wondered if there is a better gauge of happiness and success than the accumulation of more stuff and a rising GDP? If the answer is yes than don't wait another minute, contact the professionals: GrowthBusters!
Rural landscapes of the future might have pyrolysis plants instead of grain elevators on every horizon.
Pyrolysis plants are processing centers where farmers would bring bulky crops such as switchgrass to be made into crude oil.
ScienceDaily — New computer modeling work shows that by 2100, if society wants to limit carbon dioxide in the atmosphere to less than 40 percent higher than it is today, the lowest cost option is to use every available means of reducing emissions. This includes more nuclear and renewable energy, choosing electricity over fossil fuels, reducing emissions through technologies that capture and store carbon dioxide, and even using forests to store carbon.