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News from April 2008

ANALYSIS – Bush drilling plan wouldn’t have eased pump prices

ANALYSIS – Bush drilling plan wouldn’t have eased pump prices thumbnail

WASHINGTON, April 29 (Reuters) – The Bush administration says the United States would be less addicted to foreign oil and fuel prices would be lower if Congress had only opened up Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to drilling. But that claim doesn’t reflect the long lead time to develop the refuge’s huge oil reserves, which […]


X Prize: $100 Million for Clean Fuels

X Prize: $100 Million for Clean Fuels thumbnail

In a bid to speed innovation, the foundation plans awards for breakthroughs in biofuels and other alternative-energy fields The X Prize Foundation made its name handing out $10 million awards for cutting-edge innovation in promising but thinly financed fields of research. But now the Santa Monica (Calif.) foundation is targeting one of the most-crowded contests […]


Peak Everything: Learn About Peak Oil

Peak Everything: Learn About Peak Oil thumbnail

Why is everything running out at the same time? The first in a series where we look at why those basic things that we take for granted, like water, food and fuel are getting expensive and scarce, all at once. In 1956, American geophysicist M. King Hubbert calculated that the rate of production of fossil […]


Gas to Hit $7 a Gallon

Gas to Hit $7 a Gallon thumbnail

Oil is currently priced in U.S. dollars. The Federal Reserve has feverishly tried to calm credit markets in recent months with lower interest rates, which are a kind of Valium for bankers. As interest rates drop, so does the value of the dollar.

wired.com


Oil to hit $200 a barrel despite rising supply

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Qatar’s energy minister is the latest Middle Eastern expert to predict fuel prices will hit new records Qatar, the resources-rich nation, has added its voice to warnings that the price of oil will hit $200 a barrel despite record levels of production among Gulf countries last month. Qatar’s energy minister, Abdullah bin Hamad al-Attiyah’s comments […]


‘Hypermiling’ drives savings as fuel costs soar

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PHILADELPHIA (Reuters) – As U.S. gasoline prices hit records on almost a daily basis, an increasing number of motorists are following a radical driving technique designed to eke out every last mile from a tank of fuel. Known as ‘hypermiling,’ the method can double gas mileage, even in gas-guzzling vehicles that would normally get less […]


Higher energy costs from climate bills

Higher energy costs from climate bills thumbnail

WASHINGTON – People will be paying higher energy prices under a Senate bill to limit greenhouse gases, but how much will depend on how well the country can shift away from burning fossil fuels, an Energy Department analysis said Tuesday. The Energy Information Administration said annual energy costs could increase on average of as little […]


Canada oil firm probed as hundreds of ducks die

Canada oil firm probed as hundreds of ducks die thumbnail

CALGARY, Alberta (Reuters) – Hundreds of dead and dying ducks could cost Canada’s biggest oil sands producer C$1 million ($990,000) after the migrating waterfowl landed in a pond of oily, toxic sludge in northern Alberta. Syncrude Canada’s operations were under investigation by environmental regulators on Wednesday after as many as 500 birds landed in the […]


Now we know why the automakers weren’t screaming over the CAFE rules

Now we know why the automakers weren’t screaming over the CAFE rules thumbnail

When Transportation Secretary Mary Peters announced the first round of new CAFE rules last week, there was nary a peep from the automakers who had complained so vociferously about the the 35mpg standard in the first place. Now there is a clue as to why they have been so quiet. Until now, the fuel economy […]


USGS/NOAA Abrupt Climate Change: Synthesis and Assessment Report

USGS/NOAA Abrupt Climate Change: Synthesis and Assessment Report thumbnail

(From Executive Summary) For this Synthesis and Assessment Report, abrupt climate change is defined as: A large-scale change in the climate system that takes place over a few decades or less, persists (or is anticipated to persist) for at least a few decades, and causes substantial disruptions in human and natural systems. This report considers […]


U.S. House Committee Invites OPEC Secretary General to Testify

U.S. House Committee Invites OPEC Secretary General to Testify thumbnail

(Bloomberg) — The chairman of the U.S. House Judiciary Committee invited the secretary general of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries to testify at a hearing on rising fuel prices. Representative John Conyers, a Michigan Democrat, sent a letter inviting Abdalla Salem El-Badri to testify at a May 22 hearing, according to an e-mailed release […]


OPEC and Peak Oil

OPEC and Peak Oil thumbnail

OPEC Yet OPEC has been virtually silent on this issue. This cannot be due to lack of interest or expertise: it now has its own research group that produces an annual World Oil Outlook and a Monthly Market Report that are equal to the best produced by any other energy forecasting group. OPEC is certainly […]


Shell Oil president: To cut price, produce more gasoline in U.S.

Shell Oil president: To cut price, produce more gasoline in U.S. thumbnail

… John Hofmeister, president of Shell Oil Co., the U.S. division of Royal Dutch Shell, addressed rising gasoline prices during an interview Wednesday with John Roberts on CNN’s “American Morning.” ROBERTS: What do you say to people who are in this budget crunch of trying to fill up the family car? HOFMEISTER: I say we […]


Americans unload prized belongings to make ends meet

Americans unload prized belongings to make ends meet thumbnail

NEW YORK – The for-sale listings on the online hub Craigslist come with plaintive notices, like the one from the teenager in Georgia who said her mother lost her job and pleaded, “Please buy anything you can to help out.” Or the seller in Milwaukee who wrote in one post of needing to pay bills […]


Bush rhetoric on energy strays from the facts

Bush rhetoric on energy strays from the facts thumbnail

WASHINGTON – President Bush put politics ahead of the facts Tuesday as he sought to blame Congress for high energy prices, saying foreign suppliers are pumping just about all the oil they can and accusing lawmakers of blocking new refineries. Bush renewed his call for drilling in an Arctic wildlife refuge, but his own Energy […]


Sudden energy crunch forces Juneau to conserve electricity

Sudden energy crunch forces Juneau to conserve electricity thumbnail

JUNEAU, Alaska – First, there was a run on energy-efficient light bulbs. When those ran out, people began asking for lamp oil. But when they started demanding clothespins in this land of mist and rain, it was clear Alaska’s capital city was caught in a serious energy crunch. “We sold all our clothespins the first […]


Mexico to reduce oil exports to US in 2008

Mexico to reduce oil exports to US in 2008 thumbnail

LOS ANGELES, Apr. 29 — Mexico will reduce its crude oil exports to the US by an average of 184,000 b/d throughout 2008, a situation that could continue for 2 years longer, reported a Mexican media outlet. Citing PMI Comercio Internacional, the Petroleos Mexicanos affiliate in charge of marketing, El Universal newspaper said a reduction […]


Siphoning off corn to fuel our cars

Siphoning off corn to fuel our cars thumbnail

As farmers feed ethanol plants, a costly link is forged between food and oil CHARLES CITY, Iowa – Erwin Johnson picks up a clump of the dark, rich soil that he has farmed for 35 years, like his father and grandfather before him. In a few months, this flat expanse of northern Iowa will be […]


Iran dumps U.S. dollar for oil trades

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OPEC’s second-largest producer, has stopped conducting oil transactions in U.S. dollars, a top Oil Ministry official said Wednesday, in a concerted attempt to reduce reliance on Washington at a time of tension over Tehran’s nuclear program and suspected involvement in Iraq. Iran has dramatically reduced dependence on the dollar over the past year in the […]


Clinton-McCain gas tax holiday slammed as bad idea

Clinton-McCain gas tax holiday slammed as bad idea thumbnail

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A gas tax holiday proposed by U.S. presidential hopefuls John McCain and Hillary Clinton is viewed as a bad idea by many economists and has drawn unexpected support for Clinton rival Barack Obama, who also is opposed. “Score one for Obama,” wrote Greg Mankiw, a former chairman of President George W. Bush’s […]


An Open Letter to Our Next President about Energy

An Open Letter to Our Next President about Energy thumbnail

Mr. or Madam President, Vice President Dick Cheney once famously quipped “The American way of life is non-negotiable.” I submit that while our next president might not be so brash in stating this, the root of our energy problems can be traced to this attitude. But, nature doesn’t negotiate. It doesn’t appear that any of […]


Deja Vu: The Fed’s Interest Rate Dilemma

Deja Vu: The Fed’s Interest Rate Dilemma thumbnail

Despite record passenger traffic, airlines are bleeding cash and going bankrupt. Food riots have cropped up around the world, Canada is paying farmers to kill pigs because feed costs too much, and rice, it seems, is in very short supply. While ethanol subsidies have created havoc, they don’t explain everything What’s missing in most analysis […]


Friedman: Dumb as We Wanna Be

Friedman: Dumb as We Wanna Be thumbnail

It is great to see that we finally have some national unity on energy policy. Unfortunately, the unifying idea is so ridiculous, so unworthy of the people aspiring to lead our nation, it takes your breath away. Hillary Clinton has decided to line up with John McCain in pushing to suspend the federal excise tax […]


ExxonMobil row masks true green dilemma

ExxonMobil row masks true green dilemma thumbnail

…While the Rockefellers beat their breasts, most shareholders will continue to love the fat Exxon dividend. Yet underlying the protest from the trust fund Rockers is a big problem for oil companies – their ever-increasing reliance on the support of governments and regulators. Exxon’s riposte to the climate change and peak oil lobbies is that […]


Shortages Threaten Farmers

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XUAN CANH, Vietnam Ms. Nha, her face weathered beyond its 51 years, said her growth was stunted by a childhood of hunger and malnutrition. Just a few decades ago, crop yields here were far lower and diets much worse. Then the widespread use of inexpensive chemical fertilizer, coupled with market reforms, helped power an agricultural […]


Gasoline costs force service firms to raise prices

Gasoline costs force service firms to raise prices thumbnail

Small companies such as pet sitters and housecleaners are finding it necessary to pass on some of the rising expense to customers as well as to cut back on driving. You know fuel prices have gotten out of control when even your dog walker is adding a surcharge to the bill. In the week ended […]


BA raises fuel levy for 10th time

BA raises fuel levy for 10th time thumbnail

British Airways, beset by market rumours that a fresh profit warning is imminent, hiked its fuel surcharges yesterday in response to the rising cost of oil. From Friday the surcharge will rise by BA shares closed near their recent year-low at 221p yesterday amid widespread speculation that it will issue its second profit warning of […]


British Airways is big loser as public stay grounded

British Airways is big loser as public stay grounded thumbnail

Nearly half the British public have vowed to fly less in the coming year to help the environment, according to a new survey that will alarm airlines struggling with record fuel prices and the fallout from the credit crunch. An exclusive poll for The Times shows that 46 per cent of consumers have pledged to […]


Hurrah! Oil profits are up

Hurrah! Oil profits are up thumbnail

Without the inflated earnings of multinationals, we’d be even worse off than we are now Hurrah for big oil profits. Seven million dollars an hour for BP and Shell, as the cost of jet kerosene bankrupts airlines and dear diesel puts up the price of just about everything from corn flakes to cucumbers. The cheer […]


UK: Threat of fuel protests returns as cost of petrol hits

UK: Threat of fuel protests returns as cost of petrol hits thumbnail

Ministers are preparing for a fresh confrontation with the road haulage industry as the About 250 lorries caused disruption in Central London, evoking memories of the refinery blockades of September 2000. Further protests are to be staged by hauliers and farmers around the country as campaigners try to keep the issue in the public eye. […]


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