Sunday, April 27, 2008

American Petroleum Institute ad promotes climate catastrophe

Big Oil: 'Together, We Can' ignore global warming

26 Apr 2008 - The American Petroleum Institute, the trade organization for the oil and natural gas industry, has just begun running a feel-good commercial that argues "America's future" lies in drilling out domestic reserves of oil and natural gas.

Here's what the ad says:
Oil and natural gas powered the past. But the future? Fact is, a growing world will require more. 45 percent more by 2030, along with greatly expanding alternatives. We have substantial oil and natural gas resources right here. Enough to power 60 million cars and heat 160 million households for 60 years. With advanced technology and smart policies, together we can secure America's future. Log on to learn more. [Text: / The People of America's Oil and Natural Gas Industry]

The "facts" in Big Oil's ad are based on a 36-page API document [PDF] entitled "The Truth About Oil and Gasoline." This "primer" was published last week, with numerous figures and charts on oil company profits and gas prices, but nary a single mention of climate change or greenhouse gas emissions. More>>> Watch the Video

[I do question the (future) legal liability for this kind of advertizing given the growing scientific concensus on the causes and outcomes of climate change caused by carbon emissions. Editor]

Friday, April 25, 2008

The Peak Oil Crisis: The Case for 2008

Thursday, 24 April 2008 - It is conventional wisdom for most of the people following the peak oil story that we still have a few years to go before the real troubles begin. Some say 2011, others 2015 or later, but in general, among those calculating the depletion vs. new supply balance most have been talking about troubles starting in years rather than months.

Let’s ponder for a second the meaning of “peak oil.” Ever since the concept was invented some 50 years ago, peak oil has meant the point in time when world oil production increases to a level that never again will be reached. For most of us, however, peak oil will not be a point on a government chart, but will be the day when we drive up to a gas station and find the tanks empty, restrictions on how much we can buy, or more likely a price that makes us realize our lifestyles are going to change. We can no longer afford to use our cars in the manner that we have been doing all our lives.

In recent weeks there have been developments suggesting that the troubles associated with peak oil may be coming faster than many realize. More >>>

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Int'l energy forum voices concern over oil price hike

ROME, April 22 (Xinhua) -- Delegates at the International Energy Forum (IEF) expressed concern on Tuesday over the recent oil price hike, and called for dialogue between oil consuming and producing countries in a bid to cope with the situation.

At the 11th IEF, a two-day meeting which concluded here Tuesday, oil ministers from the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and other oil-rich nations, as well as heads of the world's major oil companies, said oil prices should be maintained at a level acceptable to both producers and consumers in order to ensure global economic growth.

A declaration issued after the meeting called on oil producers and consumers to intensify talks to better address the common challenges of high oil prices, supply security, the environment and sustainable development of energy. More >>>

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Earth Day: A Call For Energy Security

Tuesday: April 22, 2008 - Energy efficiency and conservation emerged as an important issue in the Pacific region due to the continuing increase in the world market oil prices which affect increases in electricity tariffs, transportation costs, prices of consumer goods and services.

As the world celebrates Earth Day today, the region is urged to focus on energy efficiency efforts to work towards regional energy security.

The Pacific Islands Applied Geoscience Commission’s Energy Adviser Koin Etuate says the use of Renewable Energy technologies and Energy Efficiency and Conservation practices at homes and offices should be recognised as part of the solutions to sustainable development and enhancing energy security.

“In the Pacific region we follow the global theme by highlighting the need to use renewable energy technologies and promoting efficient energy use and savings as possible ways to contribute to national development.”
Etuate says Pacific Island Countries are already committed to energy and economic development in both national and regional level through policies and programs.

“Pacific economies are the most vulnerable in the world to rising oil prices and they see the urgent need to reduce this vulnerability through mainstreaming energy security into national planning and budgetary processes improving energy efficiency and energy conservation.” More >>>

Monday, April 21, 2008

Energy Security as a Resource

Speaker To Urge Energy Efficiency

April 20, 2008 - Some people want to solve the would energy crisis by finding more energy, but guest speaker Marilyn Brown is focusing on reducing demand, rather than ways to provide more energy.

The Virginia Tech Dean’s Task Force for Energy Security and Sustainability will have world renowned expert in energy policy, Dr. Marilyn Brown, speak on Monday, April 21 at 1 p.m. as a part of the Virginia Tech Environmental Series.

The talk will take place in the multipurpose room in the Graduate Life Center. It is free and open to the public.

One of only 16 members of the National Commission on Energy Policy, Brown will speak on the topic “The Emergence of Energy as the Fifth Fuel.” Her talk will point to the use of energy efficiency as a resource just as coal, oil, natural gas and nuclear power are seen as resources. Energy efficiency focuses on reducing demand thus reducing the concerns of finding additional sources of fuel.

“Dr. Brown has been involved in a lot of very interesting policy activities nationally and has worked with several diverse groups and several of our faculty,” stated Dr. Jack Lesko, an engineering professor and member of the Task Force.
More >>>

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Crude oil hits a new peak at $117 a barrel news

19 April 2008 - Mumbai: Crude oil prices climbed to a record $117 a barrel on Friday despite a dollar rally and concerns of an economic slowdown in China.

US light sweet crude settled up $1.83 at $116.96 a barrel, before hitting a record $117. London Brent crude rose $1.49 to $113.92. The oil price rally has been aided by the sabotage of a major oil pipeline operated by Royal Dutch Shell by Nigerian rebels who vowed to step up attacks on oil installations. Shell, which currently pumps 400,000 barrels per day from the Nigerian fields, confirmed a small amount of production had been shut in.
Oil prices have more than quadrupled since 2002 as supply struggles to keep up with booming demand, especially in China and other emerging economies. More >>>

Friday, April 18, 2008

Wind Power Blows Big

Billionaire Texas Oilman Makes Big Bets On Wind April 18, 2008 - WASHINGTON - Legendary Texas oilman T. Boone Pickens has gone green with a plan to spend $10 billion to build the world's biggest wind farm. But he's not doing it out of generosity - he expects to turn a buck.

The Southern octogenarian's plans are as big as the Texas prairie, where he lives on a ranch with his horses, and entail fundamentally reworking how Americans use energy.

Next month, Pickens' company, Mesa Power, will begin buying land and ordering 2,700 wind turbines that will eventually generate 4,000 megawatts of electricity - the equivalent of building two commercial scale nuclear power plants - enough power for about 1 million homes.

"These are substantial," said Pickens, speaking to students at Georgetown University on Thursday. "They're big."

More >>>

Thursday, April 17, 2008

How not to prepare for peak oil

17 April 2008 - Now that the price of a barrel of oil has topped $115, the words "peak oil" can be found just about anywhere -- including in the headline of an April 16 Financial Times editorial.

But "Preparing for the age of peak oil" offers little in the way of advice for how civilization might face up to a carbon-constrained future through such measures as conservation or energy efficiency or alternative energy technologies. Instead, the editorial recommends that Russia, which recently shocked the world by acknowledging that its domestic oil production appears to have peaked, should disavow its cold shoulder to foreign oil companies and cut domestic taxes holding back the oil industry: More >>>

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Global Warming Could Severely Disrupt U.S. Oil Refineries, Warns Government Report

(NaturalNews) Weather changes caused by global warming could seriously disrupt the United States' ability to extract, refine and transport oil, according to a new government report. The study, conducted by climate change researchers at seven different Department of Energy labs, was the first to examine global warming's anticipated effects on the U.S. energy supply.

April 16, 2008 - According to the report, global-warming-driven storms are likely to severely damage oil extracting, refining and producing infrastructure. This occurred in 2005, when Hurricanes Katrina and Rita destroyed more than 100 offshore oil drilling platforms and damaged nearly 600 oil and natural gas pipelines. The resulting drop in production led to record high fuel prices throughout the United States. Such damage will become more common as the planet warms further, the report warned.
"Increases in storm intensity could threaten further (energy supply) disruptions of the sorts experienced in 2005," it said.
Adding to the impact, rising sea levels due to melting polar ice are expected to destroy coastal energy infrastructure, everything from oil refineries and liquid natural gas terminals to the ports where coal is imported and exported. More >>>

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Food or Fuel - That Is the Burning Question

BRASILIA, Apr 15 (IPS) - The difficult balancing act between fighting hunger, producing biofuels and defending the environment is at the centre of the debate at the 30th Regional Conference of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) in the Brazilian capital.

Experts from 33 Latin American and Caribbean countries, international agencies and non-governmental organisations began their technical meetings Monday at the Brazilian Foreign Ministry in Brasilia.

The aim of the conference is to assess conditions in the region, especially in the light of concerns caused by rising food prices.

"We must find a balance between fighting hunger, energy security and protecting the environment," said José Antonio Marcondes, spokesman for the Brazilian delegation at the conference, where meetings at ministerial level are to be inaugurated Wednesday by President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva. More >>>

Sunday, April 13, 2008

How to Spark an Energy Quest

April 6, 2008, A world with 6.7 billion people, a third of whom cook on dung or firewood and the rest depending on fossil fuels, needs far more energy options than it currently has, almost everyone agrees.

But consensus dissolves when it comes to the question of how best to identify, develop and spur the diffusion of new energy choices that don’t come with climate or security risks. The main focus for years has been on a climate bill or climate treaty that would cap emissions and cut the cost with trading of pollution credits so the cuts could be made by companies or countries that could do the job most cheaply. The cap would encourage conservation, drive innovation, and raise some money for basic research. More >>>

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

$100 Oil will now be normal

Running With the Bulls: EIA Says $100 Oil “New Norm”

April 9, 2008, 9:22 am Chalk up another convert from the oil bear camp: The U.S. Energy Information Administration has given up on seeing double-digit oil prices this year, and says $100 oil—and loads of volatility in crude markets—is the “new norm.” That’s a sudden shift from the $87 barrel of oil the EIA was forecasting in January.

What gives? For the U.S. energy agency, sustained high oil prices can’t be solely attributed to financial speculation, as many analysts insist. But it’s not entirely a supply shortfall either, though excess capacity is tight. Rather, it’s a double-whammy of increasing oil consumption in developing economies and greater domestic consumption in oil-exporting countries that offsets U.S. belt-tightening during the slowdown. More >>>

Saturday, April 5, 2008

The Peak Oil Crisis: The Transition

April 03 2008 - While waiting for the price of gasoline to get so high that we can’t afford to drive anymore, there is still some time to ponder just how the great paradigm shift of the 21st century is going to work out.
What will life be like 40 or 50 years from now? How many of the 6.6 billion of us will still be around? Will lifestyles be an all-electric version of the 20th Century or will inability to recover from rapidly falling supplies of fossil fuels leave us with qualitatively different lifestyles?

Among the handful of people that a) know we are on the verge of a very big problem, and b) ponder about it in print or on the internet, there are a wide range of opinions as to what the future will be like. Opinions run from the “doomers” who are convinced that only a few of the 300 million Americans and 6.3 billion foreigners are going to survive by moving to small self-sufficient rural communities and hunkering down through the anarchy. At the other end of the scale are those who are convinced that as soon as the Congress drops all this environmental nonsense and gives the oil companies unrestricted access to those billions of barrels of oil just off the coast, we will be set for centuries. More >>>