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The real story behind Saudi Arabia’s oil games thumbnail

The real story behind Saudi Arabia’s oil games

The near $50 drop in oil prices since June has led to rampant speculation about Saudi Arabia's master plan. As the world's biggest producer of crude oil, Saudi Arabia has a lot of influence on prices. One theory is that the Saudis are intentionally crashing oil markets to undermine Iran. The implication is clear: Saudi Arabia is once again using oil as a weapon to weaken its political rivals. But here's the catch: The health of the Saudi economy -- and some would argue, the viability of the Saudi state itself -- remains extremely dependent on oil. Despite numerous initiatives and billions of dollars spent on efforts to diversify the Saudi economy, oil proceeds continue to account for 90% of export earnings, approximately 80% percent of government revenues and about 40% of GDP. Saudi's oil woes: The Saudi government owns all natural resources in ...

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General Ideas

Peak Oil, World Oil Production Decline Acknowledged

John Hofmeister, Founder & CEO, Citizens for Affordable Energy and Joshua Saks, Legislative Director, National Wildlife Federation discuss the XL Pipeline Hofmeister, the former president of Shell Oil, acknowledges what perilously few in the general public know or choose not to accept which is that Peak Oil is real and it is here now. The age of cheap, easy and abundant crude oil is over.

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To Change Everything: An Anarchist Appeal thumbnail

To Change Everything: An Anarchist Appeal

A video collaboration with CrimethInc. To Change Everything: An Anarchist Appeal If you could change anything, what would you change? Would you go on vacation for the rest of your life? Make fossil fuels stop causing climate change? Ask for ethical banks and politicians? Surely nothing could be more unrealistic than to keep everything the way it is and expect different results. Our private financial and emotional struggles mirror global upheaval and disaster. We could spend the rest of our days trying to douse these fires one by one, but they stem from the same source. No piecemeal solution will serve; we need to rethink everything according to a different logic. To change anything, start everywhere. Download PDF

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Yemen risks disintegration as south rejects Shi’ite group’s takeover thumbnail

Yemen risks disintegration as south rejects Shi’ite group’s takeover

No sooner had Yemeni President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi announced his resignation than his country's tenuous political fabric began to disintegrate. Provinces across a nation barely held together by a complex web of tribal and religious alliances said they would no longer take military commands from Sanaa after the Iranian-allied Shi'ite Houthi group besieged Hadi's home and palace this week. The emerging fragmentation of the Arabian Peninsula country has sparked fears of the "Somalization" of a state which is home to a revitalized al Qaeda insurgency as well as a neighbor to top oil exporter Saudi Arabia. For Washington, Yemen's splintering would make it hard to carry out a counter-terrorism strategy against al Qaeda plotters who have targeted it and its ally Saudi Arabia and claimed responsibility for the Jan. 7 Charlie Hebdo attacks in Paris. Through Hadi, a supporter of U.S. drone strikes on ...

SOU Reboot thumbnail

SOU Reboot

"I want Americans to win the race for the kinds of discoveries that unleash new jobs – converting sunlight into liquid fuel; building the next generation of sailing ships; creating revolutionary prosthetics, so that a veteran who gave his arms for his country can play catch with his kid; and undertaking the vital work of ecological restoration on a scale unseen since Franklin Roosevelt's Civilian Conservation Corps." Jan. 20, 2015: Mr. Speaker, Mr. Vice President, Members of Congress, my fellow Americans: We are fifteen years into this new century. Fifteen years that dawned with terror touching our shores; that unfolded with a new generation fighting two long and costly wars; that saw a vicious recession spread across our nation and the world. It has been, and still is, a hard time for many. But tonight, we turn the page. Tonight, after   Some see the past ...

nuclear fusion and the promise of a brighter tomorrow thumbnail

nuclear fusion and the promise of a brighter tomorrow

The countryside of Saint-Paul-lez-Durance in Provence is a serene terrain of thickly wooded hills. On chilly January mornings, the air becomes thick with mist and the sky glows red as the sun pokes up above the horizon at dawn. By mid-morning, that haze is usually gone, leaving behind a bright blue sky with only the faintest wisp of high-altitude cloud. As picture-postcard scenes go, it is as rural and peaceful as it gets. But incongruously nestled among these hills and vineyards, the most sophisticated, expensive machine ever built is slowly taking shape at the local Cadarache nuclear facility. It is a scientific collaboration on a worldwide scale, meant to tackle one of the biggest challenges of the 21st century – with the human population growing every year, how do we continue to make ever more electricity past 2050 (the date that ...

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Power breakdown plunges Pakistan into darkness thumbnail

Power breakdown plunges Pakistan into darkness

Pakistan was plunged into darkness after a key power transmission line broke down early on Sunday in an incident blamed on a rebel attack, the latest reminder of the country's crippling energy crisis. The power failure, one of the worst Pakistan has experienced, caused electricity to be cut in major cities throughout the country, including the capital Islamabad. It was later restored in much of the country, with the national power company saying normal distribution would resume within hours. Officials said the blackout began after midnight when a transmission line connecting a privately-run power plant to the national grid was damaged. A senior official at the National Grid station in Islamabad said around 80 percent of the country was hit by power breakdown. An AFP reporter in the eastern city of Lahore said the airport was also affected by the breakdown. Minister of State for Water ...

Report highlights how natural gas “fracking” is causing earthquakes thumbnail

Report highlights how natural gas “fracking” is causing earthquakes

North-central Texas is experiencing a surge in earthquakes like never before, and a recent study says the cause could be natural gas hydraulic fracturing, a process more popularly known as "fracking." The liquid waste left over from pumping natural gas out of the ground is apparently greasing little-known fault lines in the region near Dallas-Fort Worth, triggering waves of earthquakes that, in some cases, are damaging buildings and people's homes. Published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academies of Sciences (PNAS), the study evaluated seismic activity near fracking disposal wells located underneath the Barnett Shale, as well as near drilling sites on the Eagle Ford Shale in South Texas and the Bakken Shale in North Dakota. Seismologists found that fracking waste water is creating conditions whereby otherwise stable fault lines are slipping from all the added moisture. In each of the areas ...

Iran announces record gas production thumbnail

Iran announces record gas production

Iran said on Saturday that it has been able to produce a total of 105 million cubic meters of sweet gas per day (mcm/d) from five prioritized projects in the country’s energy hub of South Pars from June 2013.     The National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) said the projects – phases 12, 15&16, and 17&18 – are scheduled to produce 15 mcm/d more gas per day before April 2015. This, the NIOC said in a statement, is unprecedented in the history of Iran’s oil industry. The company added that Iran faced a daily shortage of about 160 mcm/d of natural gas last winter. However, it said, there will be no shortages this winter given the extra production from the five prioritized South Pars projects. NIOC further said it will launch seven new platforms – three at Phase 12 and four at phases 15 ...

Hype, Broken Promises, and Shales thumbnail

Hype, Broken Promises, and Shales

The term shale revolution has been used so much that it almost has no meaning anymore. But were shales ever really the energy panacea promised or merely a self styled hype machine? Would the frenzy in drilling ever have truly taken off if it weren’t for cheap money? These are valid questions which have not been explored adequately because too many investors, journalists and elected officials were caught up in shale mania. But was this ever truly an exercise that would provide long term benefits to American consumers? It is an inarguable fact that shales have produced copious quantities of hydrocarbons in the past few years but this is not really surprising given that the wells, by their very nature, produce the most oil or gas they will ever produce in the first twelve months or so of their lives. So ...

Oil Dinosaurs Face Extinction: State Oil Companies And The Meteor-Strike Of Low Oil Prices thumbnail Oil Dinosaurs Face Extinction: State Oil Companies And The Meteor-Strike Of Low Oil Prices
State-owned oil companies that don't slash expenses to align with revenues and boost critical ...
Pickens: Producers can’t keep drilling at $45 oil thumbnail Pickens: Producers can’t keep drilling at $45 oil
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Energy tycoon Boone Pickens predicted on Friday that oil prices would be back near ...
President Barack Obama to pay respects to new Saudi King thumbnail President Barack Obama to pay respects to new Saudi King
U.S. President Barack Obama will travel to Saudi Arabia on Tuesday in order to ...
How we went from peak oil to too much oil thumbnail How we went from peak oil to too much oil
It’s not the worry we’ll run out of fossil fuels that’s the problem any ...

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