Sunday, September 19, 2010

ODAC Newsletter - Sep 17

The three major organizations that forecast long-term oil demand and supply – the International Energy Agency (IEA), the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), and the United States Energy Information Administration (EIA) – along with oil companies and consulting firms, believe that OPEC will reconcile predicted global demand and non-OPEC supply. But they are wrong: OPEC output will not meet such projections, because they are based on flawed and outdated forecasting models...

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Opec at 50: cartel faces new challengesJavier Blas, Financial Times, 14 Sep 2010View original article

As the Opec oil cartel celebrates its 50th anniversary, the club can reflect over its recent success. Amid the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression and a savage reduction in oil demand, the cartel has, against the odds, fruitfully anchored oil prices at $75 a barrel...

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Unconventional Gas and Raised Oil Recovery Are Focus for Saudi Aramco's Samuel Ciszuk - IHS, Commodities Now, 14 Sep 2010View original article

Having built up a spare crude production capacity of over 4 million b/d, Saudi Aramco's priorities will now be gas development—where an increasing focus on unconventional gas is needed—to meet spiralling domestic demand, while its oil position will be sustained through, over the long term, raising recovery levels to 70% at its main onshore oilfields.

IHS Global Insight Perspective
Significance Saudi Aramco expects to continue growing its oil reserves mainly through improvements to its recovery levels, hoping to raise those to 70% and add 40% to crude reserves "over time", while its domestic gas shortage is to be met over the long term by the company moving into the exploitation of unconventional gas reserves in the kingdom...

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Bracing For Peak Oil Production By Decade's EndWallace Forbes, Forbes, 13 Sep 2010View original article

Charles Maxwell is senior energy analyst at Weeden & Co. Maxwell discusses where oil's production peak is and how that affects investments.

Charles Maxwell: The use of petroleum in the world is now up to about 30 billion barrels per year. The rate at which we have found new supplies of petroleum over the last 10 years has fallen to an average, of only about 10 billion barrels per year...

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BP cited for North Sea safety failures: reportAFP, 15 Sep 2010View original article

BP failed to comply with emergency regulations on oil spills at four out of five of its North Sea installations which were inspected last year, a report said Wednesday, citing official records.

The British oil giant had not complied with rules on regular training for offshore operators on how to respond to an incident, according to inspection records obtained by the Financial Times newspaper...

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BP insists deepwater drilling in North Sea will go aheadTerry Macalister, The Guardian, 15 Sep 2010View original article

BP is determined to press ahead with plans to drill deepwater wells west of the Shetlands despite criticism of its "outrageous" attitude to the risks of drilling in the US and worries about its North Sea safety record.

The company is still in talks with the government and privately recognises the Deepwater Horizon disaster makes it a highly sensitive issue but said it would probably start work next year...

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Obama asks for millions for oil, gas oversightAFP, 14 Sep 2010View original article

US President Barack Obama asked Congress for more than 90 million dollars to reform oversight of the offshore oil and gas industry, following the Gulf of Mexico oil disaster.

Some of the money would be raised by more than doubling the fees the government charges firms for inspecting their offshore facilities, Obama told House of Representatives speaker Nancy Pelosi in a letter...

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Oil spills hit on land, too: Aging pipelines imperil MidwestMark Guarino, Christian Science Monitor, 14 Sep 2010View original article

Two oil spills between late July and last week in Michigan and Illinois are expected to significantly raise prices at Midwestern gas pumps even as they raise questions about the aging infrastructure of pipelines delivering oil and natural gas from Canada to Midwestern refineries.

The two broken pipelines are owned by one company: Enbridge Energy Partners of Calgary, Alberta, a firm that is poorly regarded by environmentalists for a large, and increasing, number of spills that have dumped millions of gallons of crude into the environment over the past decade...

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BP well could be 'killed' by Sunday: US spill overseerAFP, 15 Sep 2010View original article

BP is on the cusp of finishing drilling operations to seal its blown-out Macondo well in the Gulf of Mexico and could declare it permanently "killed" by Sunday, a top US official said.

"We're moving faster than we expected," retired US Coast Guard admiral Thad Allen said, adding that engineers were drilling the last 20 to 25 feet (six to 7.5 meters) of a relief well that will allow them to pour in a final seal of heavy drilling mud and cement...

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Crude Oil Declines as Enbridge Says Midwest Pipeline Will Start TomorrowMargot Habiby,, 16 Sep 2010View original article

Oil fell the most this month as Enbridge Energy Partners LP prepared to start a pipeline that supplies Canadian crude to refineries in the U.S. Midwest.

Futures dropped as much as 2.5 percent after Enbridge said it plans to send oil through the pipeline early tomorrow after repairing a leak in Romeoville, Illinois, that was discovered last week. The timetable is in compliance with an agreement with federal regulators. Another pipeline was shut in August...

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Shell CEO: Nat Gas To Play Prominent Global Energy RoleAngel Gonzalez and Mark Peters, Wall Street Journal, 13 Sep 2010View original article

Natural gas, boosted by recent breakthroughs in its production and its relatively small carbon footprint, will play a prominent role in the world's energy future, as long as global energy policies allow it to fill an increasing share of demand, Royal Dutch Shell PLC's (RDSA, RDSB) Chief Executive Peter Voser said Monday.

"If we create space for natural gas to grow, natural gas will change the world's energy landscape for the better," Voser said at the World Energy Congress in Montreal...

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Unconventional Gas: Cheap Gas Coming?Paul Stevens, Chatham House - The World Today, 14 Sep 2010View original article

In the last decade America has rapidly developed a new source of gas found naturally in rocks. It now provides a fifth of national needs. Such gas is present in Europe too, and whether or not it is practical to extract it, it is already having an effect on future supplies.

In the last decade America has rapidly developed a new source of gas found naturally in rocks. It now provides a fifth of national needs. Such gas is present in Europe too, and whether or not it is practical to extract it, it is already having an effect on future supplies...

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EPA to Widen Drilling StudySiobhan Hughes - Wall Street Journal, Rigzone, 14 Sep 2010View original article

Environmental Protection Agency officials said that they plan to widen their investigation into a natural-gas drilling technique that the energy industry says is critical to tapping huge new supplies of natural gas.

Controversy over whether the practice -- called hydraulic fracturing, or fracking -- poses a risk to drinking water and public health drew hundreds of people to an EPA hearing here Monday...

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UK to boost gas stashUpstream, 15 Sep 2010View original article

The UK's gas storage capacity is set to rise by 15% after the government today gave the go ahead to WINGAS Storage to convert its Saltfleetby onshore gas field into an underground gas storage facility.

Saltfleetby in Lincolnshire is the UK's largest onshore gas field and will provide between 700 million to 800 million cubic metres of new gas storage capacity...

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Fears £9bn clean coal programme could be drastically scaled backTim Webb, The Guardian, 14 Sep 2010View original article

The Treasury is reviewing the government's £9bn clean coal programme amid growing fears in the energy department that it will be drastically scaled back.

Senior sources within the energy department believe the plan for four new clean coal pilot plants – funded by a £9bn levy on consumer electricity bills – are the most vulnerable to cuts...

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A Multi-Trillion-Euro Price Tag for Energy EfficiencyDer Spiegel, 13 Sep 2010View original article

Chancellor Angela Merkel's plan to make Germany's residential buildings the most energy-efficient in the world has run into resistance within her cabinet. The project's price tag could be as high as 2.4 trillion euros -- and the minister responsible told SPIEGEL it is impracticable.

It was Berlin's decision to extend the lifespans of the country's nuclear reactors that has received the most attention. Since Chancellor Angela Merkel's government presented its new energy strategy last week, hardly a day has gone by without yet another voice being added to the national wrangling over atomic energy. This weekend will see a large anti-nuclear demonstration in Berlin...

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World's largest offshore windfarm set to open off Kent coastTerry Macalister, The Guardian, 12 Sep 2010View original article

Vattenfall's Thanet farm set to open as National Grid confirms wind-generated electricity has hit a new peak

The world's largest offshore windfarm, which cost over £750m to build, is poised to open off the coast of Kent, with 100 turbines producing enough electricity to supply heat and light for 200,000 homes...

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An ill wind blows for Denmark's green energy revolutionAndrew Gilligan, Telegraph, 14 Sep 2010View original article

Denmark has long been a role model for green activists, but now it has become one of the first countries to turn against the turbines.

To green campaigners, it is windfarm heaven, generating a claimed fifth of its power from wind and praised by British ministers as the model to follow. But amid a growing public backlash, Denmark, the world's most windfarm-intensive country, is turning against the turbines...

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'Privileged' opposition holding back wind farm developmentThe Ecologist, 10 Sep 2010View original article

Onshore wind sites being ignored because of threat of local resistance as analysis points to unfulfilled potential of community-driven projects

Prime locations for wind energy are being ignored because of a 'privileged' and politically active local opposition, suggests new analysis of English windfarms applications...

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Warning on target for green energyFiona Harvey, Environment Correspondent, Financial Times, 10 Sep 2010View original article

Drastic new measures will be needed if the UK is to meet its target of generating 15 per cent of its energy from renewable sources by 2020, the government's climate change watchdog has warned.

The UK generates only 3 per cent of its energy from such sources, despite more than a decade of policy measures intended to raise that figure substantially...

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Biofuels May Replace Half of EU Gasoline by 2020 Using Waste, Study SaysBloomberg, 14 Sep 2010View original article

Biofuels made from plant waste and municipal trash rather than food crops could replace more than half of gasoline used in the European Union by 2020, Bloomberg New Energy Finance said.

The 27-nation bloc could produce 90 billion liters (24 billion gallons) of next-generation ethanol in 2020, or about 65 percent of predicted fossil gasoline consumption, the London- based research group said today in a study. At least 100 refineries a year could be built in the region from 2013, according to the report...

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Biofuels: Alternative fuels fail to live up to the hypeEd Crooks, Financial Times, 12 Sep 2010View original article

In the search for new feedstocks to provide the fuels of the future, one of the latest ideas is to use dirty nappies. Amec, the UK-based engineering group, is developing a process to use discarded disposable nappies and other plastic materials that are not now recycled to make a synthetic diesel fuel...

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Plan to generate electricity from waste food in GwyneddBBC Online, 14 Sep 2010View original article

An anaerobic digestion plant to treat 15,000 tonnes of food waste annually and generate electricity as a result is being proposed for Gwynedd.

It would be built at the Llwyn Isaf tip near Clynnog and would treat waste using "micro-organisms" to produce bio-fertiliser...

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Climate change advisers urge UK to prepare for changeRichard Black, BBC Online, 16 Sep 2010View original article

The UK needs to prepare itself quickly to deal with the impacts of climate change, government advisers warn.

The Committee on Climate Change (CCC) says climate effects are already being felt in the UK in the form of higher temperatures and changing seasons...

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A Possible Solution to Europe's Clogged RoadwaysChristian Wüst, Der Spiegel, 06 Sep 2010View original article

Experts in the transportation sector are excited about CargoBeamer, a new German transshipment technology designed to shift more truck freight to the railways. The innovative system could ease congestion on the roads and help the environment.

For some people, the profession of long-distance truck driver used to be considered a dream job. Those days are long gone...

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Nottingham named England's least car-dependent cityDan Milmo, The Guardian, 14 Sep 2010View original article

Nottingham has been named as England's least car-dependent city in a survey that exposes inconsistent planning across the country with one of the nation's newest conurbations, Milton Keynes, labelled the worst for cyclists and bus users.

Award-winning bus services, a European-style embrace of the tram and a bias against out-of-town shopping centres were cited as powerful incentives for residents of Nottingham to leave their cars at home, according to a report by the Campaign for Better Transport. By contrast, Milton Keynes, trumpeted as the epitome of modern urban dwelling in the 1980s, is criticised for a reliance on the motor vehicle to get people from A to B...

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America’s delusions of energy independenceTN loan program helps businesses go green

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