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News from June 2008

As Gas Prices Rise, Teenagers

As Gas Prices Rise, Teenagers thumbnail

SCHAUMBURG, Ill. From coast to coast, American teenagers appear to be driving less this summer. Police officers who keep watch on weekend cruising zones say fewer youths are spending their time driving around in circles, with more of them hanging out in parking lots, malls or movie theaters. The price spike in gasoline, to an […]


Fuel prices sink fishing profits

Fuel prices sink fishing profits thumbnail

Leaping fuel prices are sinking the fortunes of America’s commercial fishermen, some of whom may soon call it quits for good. In Alaska, boats that typically haul in rockfish and perch sit docked for prolonged periods. In Texas, shrimpers are traveling to Mexico just to buy cheaper diesel. And along the East Coast, lobstermen are […]


Bad hurricane season could cause natural gas spike, analysts say

Bad hurricane season could cause natural gas spike, analysts say thumbnail

As the Atlantic hurricane season enters its second month, many energy industry observers are taking bets on how a major storm in the Gulf of Mexico could affect already volatile commodity prices. In 2005, three big hurricanes walloped the Texas-Louisiana coastline – home to key oil refineries and major offshore natural gas operations – and […]


Zambia: British Petroleum Ups Aircraft Fuel By 50 Percent

Zambia: British Petroleum Ups Aircraft Fuel By 50 Percent thumbnail

THE price of Jet A-1 fuel for aircraft has been increased by about 50 per cent with immediate effect due to soaring prices of crude oil at the international market. The increment has, however, shocked Zambian Airways, which has described the move as unprecedented and a blow to the aviation industry. Zambian Airways chief operations […]


Worse Than Grandma’s Depression (Kunstler)

Worse Than Grandma’s Depression (Kunstler) thumbnail

This isn’t so funny anymore. Intimations of a July banking collapse rumbled though the Internet this weekend while mainstream news orgs like The New York Times and CNN pulled their puds over swift boats and Amy Winehouse’s performance technique. Something is happening, and you don’t know what it is, do you Mr. Jones…? to quote […]


This economic panic is pushing the planet right back down the agenda

This economic panic is pushing the planet right back down the agenda thumbnail

Almost everyone seems to agree: governments now face a choice between saving the planet and saving the economy. As recession looms, the political pressure to abandon green policies intensifies. A report published yesterday by Ernst & Young suggests that the EU’s puny carbon target will raise energy bills by 20% over the next 12 years. […]


Chevron’s Nigeria Strike Leaves Oil Output Unaffected

Chevron’s Nigeria Strike Leaves Oil Output Unaffected thumbnail

Chevron Corp.’s worker strike in Nigeria last week didn’t cut oil production from the West African nation, Petroleum Minister H. Odein Ajumogobia said. Output is about 1.886 million barrels a day, Ajumogobia said today in an interview in Madrid, where he is attending the World Petroleum Congress. Nigeria produced 1.9 million barrels a day in […]


Australia: Fuel protest causes F3 slowdown

Australia: Fuel protest causes F3 slowdown thumbnail

Motorists driving to Sydney from the Central Coast face delays during peak hour this morning due to a protest by truck drivers The protest was about soaring fuel prices, the Transport Workers Union said. Sydney Morning Herald


Truckers in France protest high fuel prices

Truckers in France protest high fuel prices thumbnail

Truck drivers protesting soaring fuel prices have slowed highway traffic outside Paris and other French cities. Labor union officials say 40 protests nationwide are designed to win reductions in gasoline taxes and other government measures to offset rising world fuel prices. France’s traffic information center says truckers who were driving at a snail’s pace brought […]


Russian oil exports fell 5.3% to 757mln bbl in Jan.-May

Russian oil exports fell 5.3% to 757mln bbl in Jan.-May thumbnail

Russia’s crude oil exports fell by an estimated 5.3%, year-on-year, in January-May 2008 to 103.3 million metric tons (757 million barrels), the Economic Development Ministry said Monday on its web site. The decline was due to lower crude output and increased supplies to domestic refiners, the ministry said. Russia’s oil exports to the Commonwealth of […]


Car sales drop-off feared

Car sales drop-off feared thumbnail

Detroit’s automakers and, indeed, the entire auto industry, are expected to report a historic drop-off in monthly auto sales Tuesday — a plunge that helps explain why the automakers are dramatically, and decisively, cutting production at factories during the months aheadFreep


Moving Beyond Corn

Moving Beyond Corn thumbnail

Investors are pouring new money into companies developing alternative ethanol-production technologies. Sources like paper pulp and barley are gaining attention as the merits of corn-based ethanol as an alternative fuel source is being questioned by environmentalists and politicians because of the fuel’s link to rising food prices. In May, oil-and-gas giant Marathon Oil Corp. led […]


EIA revises down U.S. April oil demand by 4.2 pct

EIA revises down U.S. April oil demand by 4.2 pct thumbnail

U.S. oil demand in April was 863,000 barrels per day less than previously estimated and down 811,000 bpd from a year earlier, putting petroleum consumption at the lowest level for any April month in six years, the Energy Information Administration said on Monday. The lower oil demand was due to rising fuel prices and a […]


Mounting Costs Slow the Push for Clean Coal

Mounting Costs Slow the Push for Clean Coal thumbnail

WASHINGTON President Bush is for it, and indeed has spent years talking up the virtues of


GM, Ford shares decline ahead of June sales report

GM, Ford shares decline ahead of June sales report thumbnail

Options strategist Frederic Ruffy at Web information site WhatsTrading.com said GM’s stock is also down amid concerns about energy prices and the automaker’s financial problems. U.S. automakers including GM and Ford were expected to post double-digit decline in U.S. sales in June when they report monthly sales on Tuesday. Reuters


Iraq throws open door to foreign oil firms

Iraq throws open door to foreign oil firms thumbnail

BAGHDAD (Reuters) – Iraq opened its giant oilfields to foreign firms on Monday, putting British and U.S. companies in pole position five years after U.S.-led troops invaded the country to oust Saddam Hussein. The move to invite bids for the development of Iraq’s largest producing fields should mark the return of the oil majors, whose […]


Human rights, rare species on EU biofuels agenda

Human rights, rare species on EU biofuels agenda thumbnail

BRUSSELS, June 30 (Reuters) – The European Union is near to agreeing standards for biofuels that put human rights and endangered species high on the agenda, a diplomat chairing the negotiations said. But the critical issue of how much CO2 they should save is as yet undecided. Biofuel use is soaring as developed countries try […]


Adding Fuel to the Oil and Gas Boom

Adding Fuel to the Oil and Gas Boom thumbnail

Had I written such a headline a decade ago — heck, just five years ago — I might have looked like a prescient genius. Writing it as I do now, years after oil and gas company stocks have exploded, oil itself sits north of $140 a barrel, and many feel that big oil has ruined […]


Britain seeks to set pace in carbon capture quest

Britain seeks to set pace in carbon capture quest thumbnail

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain announced a shortlist of four firms on Monday in a tender to build the world’s first commercial-scale power plant to burn coal and gas without adding to global warming. Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) promises a technological solution to soaring emissions of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide from fossil fuel burning […]


France says EU may need to reconsider biofuel goal

France says EU may need to reconsider biofuel goal thumbnail

PARIS (Reuters) – The European Union may have to reconsider its target of getting 10 percent of transport fuel from renewable sources such as biofuels by 2020, or extend the deadline, incoming EU president France said on Monday. Biofuel use is soaring as developed countries try to curb dependence on imported oil and cut emissions […]


Auto sales: bleak, but is it the bottom?

Auto sales: bleak, but is it the bottom? thumbnail

DETROIT (Reuters) – U.S. auto sales in June are expected to post a double-digit decline, dropping to a 15-year low as record gas prices killed the market for trucks and SUVs and made it impossible for many drivers to swap out for more fuel-efficient, new cars. Now the urgent question for investors has become whether […]


US ‘won’t allow’ Iran to shut key Gulf oil route

US ‘won’t allow’ Iran to shut key Gulf oil route thumbnail

MANAMA (AFP) His remarks followed comments by the chief of Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guards, General Mohammad Ali Jafari, who issued a new warning last week against any attack against his country over its controversial nuclear drive. “It is natural that when a country is attacked it uses all of its capabilities against the enemy, and […]


Hoarding Nations Drive Food Costs Ever Higher

Hoarding Nations Drive Food Costs Ever Higher thumbnail

BANGKOK The restrictions are making it harder for impoverished importing countries to afford the food they need. The export limits are forcing some of the most vulnerable people, those who rely on relief agencies, to go hungry.


Bill McKibben: When Words Fail

Bill McKibben: When Words Fail thumbnail

Climate change activists have chosen a magic number I ALMOST NEVER write about writing I


Petrofraud and the New Depression

Petrofraud and the New Depression thumbnail

Petrofraud is a word I coined to describe the the great con job that is the Bush administration Once these statements would have sounded outlandish; the ravings of an extremist. Now, however, we all know it to be true. Even those who still fancy themselves


AP-Yahoo News poll: 9 in 10 hit hard by gas prices

AP-Yahoo News poll: 9 in 10 hit hard by gas prices thumbnail

WASHINGTON (AP) Nearly half think that hardship will be serious. To cope, most are driving less, easing off the air conditioning and heating at home and cutting corners elsewhere. Half are curtailing vacation plans; nearly as many are considering buying cars that burn less gas. As the price has spiraled upward so, too, has the […]


The US Offshore Drilling Argument: The Debate Between Now Versus Waiting a While

The US Offshore Drilling Argument: The Debate Between Now Versus Waiting a While thumbnail

The question of whether we should or should not drill is again in the news. Locations of concern include coastal waters such as those near Florida; the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) (beyond state coastal areas); and the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR). Many are saying drilling doesn’t make sense. I believe that it makes sense […]


Report: U.S. ‘preparing the battlefield’ in Iran

Report: U.S. ‘preparing the battlefield’ in Iran thumbnail

WASHINGTON (CNN) — The Bush administration has launched a “significant escalation” of covert operations in Iran, sending U.S. commandos to spy on the country’s nuclear facilities and undermine the Islamic republic’s government, journalist Seymour Hersh said Sunday. White House, CIA and State Department officials declined comment on Hersh’s report, which appears in this week’s issue […]


Crude today is dirt cheap: Matthew Simmons

Crude today is dirt cheap: Matthew Simmons thumbnail

There are projections that oil may touch $200 a barrel by year-end. Do you think we are heading towards such a situation? There are so many whacky theories swirling around the world on why oil prices stunned everyone. Speculators are mostly betting that crude will soon crash, so I suspect this group of investors is […]


Cries in the Dark (Roscoe Bartlett, James Woolsey, Andy Karsner, Robert Hirsch)

Cries in the Dark (Roscoe Bartlett, James Woolsey, Andy Karsner, Robert Hirsch) thumbnail

How serious is America’s energy crisis? These four voices want to make sure policymakers don’t dismiss it — again. The oil shock of 1973 came and went. So did the panic after the Iranian revolution six years later, when oil prices shot to record highs. Gone, too, is the brief flurry of fear that followed […]


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