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News from July 2008

5 states threaten to sue EPA to get carbon curbs

5 states threaten to sue EPA to get carbon curbs thumbnail

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Five states led by California on Thursday gave notice of their intent to sue the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency if it does not act soon to reduce carbon emissions from ships, aircraft and off-road vehicles. In a letter prepared by California Attorney General Jerry Brown, the five states and New York City […]


Community colleges tap into wind energy boom

Community colleges tap into wind energy boom thumbnail

Turbine technicians groomed, industry often grabs them before graduation BISMARCK, N.D. – With wind turbine towers popping up on the U.S. landscape at a rate of almost 10 per day, the need for people to maintain and repair them is reaching the critical point. Community colleges in North Dakota and other states are jumping at […]


MIT develops way to bank solar energy at home

MIT develops way to bank solar energy at home thumbnail

CAMBRIDGE, Massachusetts (Reuters) – A U.S. scientist has developed a new way of powering fuel cells that could make it practical for home owners to store solar energy and produce electricity to run lights and appliances at night. A new catalyst produces the oxygen and hydrogen that fuel cells use to generate electricity, while using […]


Green revolution emerges in smokestack China

Green revolution emerges in smokestack China thumbnail

LONDON (Reuters) – China, pilloried as the world’s biggest polluter, has quietly taken a lead in moving to a low carbon economy, an independent climate advisory group said on Friday. Although it is building one coal-fired power station a week and its carbon dioxide emissions have surged since 2002, from seven percent of the global […]


The Peak Oil Crisis: Smart Meters

The Peak Oil Crisis: Smart Meters thumbnail

It’s going to be an electric world. For those of you who have been following the peak oil story, it is becoming increasingly clear that liquid fuels for the average person’s transportation has a very short half-life. It won’t be long before we figure out that natural gas is too valuable for making stuff to […]


Australia: Tipping into recession

Australia: Tipping into recession thumbnail

CONSUMER spending and bank lending have slumped to recession levels, putting pressure on the Reserve Bank to start cutting interest rates before it has inflation under control. Retailers suffered their worst month in seven years in June as the money through the till dropped by 1 per cent under the weight of rising mortgage costs […]


Peak Oil Theory: Has Peak Oil Peaked?

Peak Oil Theory: Has Peak Oil Peaked? thumbnail

Whether the excitement over peak oil has peaked, with Matthew Simmons, Simmons & Co. International; David Kirsch, PFC Energy; Paul Kedrosky, Ten Asset management and NBC’s Janet Shamlian. Simmons argues that the Saudi production numbers cannot be trusted. CNBC (video)


Spain to cut speed limit in bid to reduce oil imports

Spain to cut speed limit in bid to reduce oil imports thumbnail

Spain has launched an ambitious plan to reduce energy consumption and save millions of euros on oil imports by cutting the speed limit to 50mph and handing out millions of low-energy use light bulbs. With the introduction of a broad swathe of measures between now and 2014, Spain’s socialist government hopes to reduce Spain’s oil […]


Travelers get angry over cost of fueling up

Travelers get angry over cost of fueling up thumbnail

Recent ● A Bay Area woman set fires in restrooms of two different gas stations (and a Starbucks). When arrested she told police that she


US Interior Secretary: New Oil Lease Plan May Include Closed Areas

US Interior Secretary: New Oil Lease Plan May Include Closed Areas thumbnail

The U.S. Secretary of the Interior Wednesday ordered the agency to start preparing a new five-year oil and natural gas lease sale program that will include areas currently under a congressional moratorium. The announcement will likely ratchet up the pressure on Democrats in Congress who have been under an concerted attack by Republicans to lift […]


Pemex cuts target to 2.8M barrels a day

Pemex cuts target to 2.8M barrels a day thumbnail

Petroleos Mexicanos, the third-largest oil supplier to the U.S., lowered its crude oil production target for a second time in as many months as its largest field, Cantarell, declined faster than forecast. Pemex, as the Mexican state-owned oil company is known, expects to produce 2.8 million barrels a day this year, said Vinicio Suro, managing […]


She

She thumbnail

Author of Disaster Preparedness Book Stocks Up ONE Friday afternoon a few weeks ago, as cable news channels carried bulletins that two government-sponsored mortgage lenders might go bankrupt, Kathy Harrison stood in the kitchen of her two-story, 19th-century farmhouse here, about 20 miles northwest of Northampton, laying out herbs from the garden. With commentators throwing […]


More Peak Oil Evidence: Exxon Production Falls 7.8%, Most In Decade

More Peak Oil Evidence: Exxon Production Falls 7.8%, Most In Decade thumbnail

production fell 7.8%, the biggest decline in at least a decade. Production tumbled 7.8 percent after assets were seized in Venezuela, Nigerian workers went on strike and record prices triggered contract clauses that give oil-rich governments a bigger share of output. CEO Rex Tillerson said that Exxon is spending $52 million a day looking for […]


UK: Consumer fury at hikes and profits

UK: Consumer fury at hikes and profits thumbnail

Consumers were left furious today as British Gas Centrica, which owns British Gas, made its profit announcement on the same morning that Shell, the world’s second biggest oil company, posted a near


Shell Says Nigerian Production Is Cut By 220,000 Barrels a Day

Shell Says Nigerian Production Is Cut By 220,000 Barrels a Day thumbnail

(Bloomberg) — Royal Dutch Shell Plc, Europe’s largest oil company by market value, said as much as 220,000 barrels a day of crude production in Nigeria is shut in because of militant attacks. As of today, 220,000 barrels a day of daily output is stopped, including 42,000 barrels following a pipeline attack on July 28, […]


Vancouver needs to plan for a post-oil world — now

Vancouver needs to plan for a post-oil world — now thumbnail

North American cities had better start adapting to a future characterized by climate change and depleting oil. Fewer parking lots. More condominiums. No more big highway upgrades. No further airport expansion. Emergency response and health care systems that can respond to the potential impacts of global warming and energy shocks. The future is here, declares […]


South Stream Russia-Europe Pipeline to Cost $20B

South Stream Russia-Europe Pipeline to Cost $20B thumbnail

Russia’s Energy Ministry has announced a preliminary cost assessment of the South Stream pipeline project, a major gas export route to Europe, at $20 billion, a ministry spokeswoman said Wednesday. The pipeline, which according to plan should carry 30 billion cubic meters of natural gas per year to Europe starting in 2013, will be built […]


Future threats to the Amazon rainforest

Future threats to the Amazon rainforest thumbnail

The reasons for land-clearing in the Amazon are compelling: cheap land and booming demand for commodities driven by a surging China and growing interest in biofuels. These factors have helped Brazil become an agricultural superpower — the world’s largest exporter of beef, cotton, coffee, orange juice, soybeans, and sugar, among other products — in less […]


Barack Obama’s green coal: Another myth from the change agent?

Barack Obama’s green coal: Another myth from the change agent? thumbnail

As a result of our consumptive lifestyles, the mountaintops of Appalachia, from Tennessee up to the heart of West Virginia, are being ravaged by the coal industry — an industry that cares little about the welfare of people or the land that it is adversely affecting with its mining operations. The debris from the holes, […]


Lufthansa Expands Cost Cuts as Fuel Expenses Rise

Lufthansa Expands Cost Cuts as Fuel Expenses Rise thumbnail

Deutsche Lufthansa AG, Europe’s second-biggest airline, is increasing efforts to cut spending this year to help counter rising fuel costs that are threatening earnings at its main passenger business. The passenger unit, Lufthansa’s biggest, will fail to match last year’s results if oil prices remain at record levels, Chief Financial Officer Stephan Gemkow said today. […]


S-K: Asiana Air Posts First Loss in Almost 3 Years on Fuel

S-K: Asiana Air Posts First Loss in Almost 3 Years on Fuel thumbnail

Asiana Airlines Inc., South Korea’s second-biggest carrier, posted its first loss in almost three years as the price of jet fuel, the airline’s single-biggest expense, rose to a record. Jet fuel surged an average 87 percent from a year earlier, eroding earnings at airlines worldwide and forcing at least 25 carriers to cease flying or […]


Russia: 2 More Coal Firms Come Under Fire

Russia: 2 More Coal Firms Come Under Fire thumbnail

The government’s antitrust probe into rising coal prices widened Wednesday to include Evraz Group and Raspadskaya, just days after Prime Minister Vladimir Putin attacked miner Mechel. The Federal Anti-Monopoly Service said in a statement Wednesday that it had launched an investigation into whether Evraz and Raspadskaya had abused their “dominant position in the market for […]


Tax hike would force German biodiesel closures

Tax hike would force German biodiesel closures thumbnail

Germany’s crisis-hit biodiesel industry faces further closures if the government goes ahead with plans to further raise biofuel taxes, a biofuels industry leader said on Wednesday. Germany’s government plans to increase taxes on biodiesel in January 2009 to 21 euro cents a litre, from 15 cents, in the next stage of its programme to raise […]


Inuit advocate against uranium mining in Greenland

Inuit advocate against uranium mining in Greenland thumbnail

Greenland’s environment should come before profits from mining, a leading Inuit spokesperson told American broadcaster CBS The president of the International Circumpolar Council in Greenland believes mining companies should not be permitted to remove uranium from Greenland’s underground, under any circumstances.‘Why should be spoil our nature and our people’s health,’ Aqqaluk Lynge told CBS News. […]


Gas prices fall, but drivers don’t feel relief

Gas prices fall, but drivers don’t feel relief thumbnail

Gas prices have declined for for the past two weeks, but try telling that to commuters around the nation. NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) — Gasoline prices may have fallen over the last 13 days, but the decline has offered little relief to long-distance commuters who still blanch at the pump every time they fill up. Motorist […]


Arctic ice bigger than 2007, but thawing long-term

Arctic ice bigger than 2007, but thawing long-term thumbnail

OSLO (Reuters) – Arctic sea ice is unlikely to shrink below a 2007 record low this year in a reprieve from the worst predictions of climate change even though new evidence confirms a long-term thaw is under way, experts said. The 2007 record raised worries of a melt that could leave the North Pole ice-free […]


In the tall grass, researchers find energy alternative

In the tall grass, researchers find energy alternative thumbnail

A perennial grass that grows as tall as 13 feet, requires little to no fertilizer, and can be stored away in bales almost indefinitely could be the next hope for efficient ethanol production. At least that’s the thinking of researchers from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign who have been field testing a sterile grass known […]


Sorghum taking root as a source for ethanol

Sorghum taking root as a source for ethanol thumbnail

FELLSMERE, Fla. There are no sweet sorghum ethanol plants in the U.S., though there are 10 grain sorghum ethanol plants, according to the National Sweet Sorghum Producers and Processors Association. Sweet sorghum has more sugar, and so higher energy content. It is primarily grown in the Southeast as livestock feed. To convert sweet sorghum into […]


Will pond scum become the new oil?

Will pond scum become the new oil? thumbnail

(CNN) — Pond scum. The thought typically evokes images that leave most people cringing, but it may one day occupy an important role in the nation’s energy supply. The current fuel crunch, driven fundamentally by a rising global demand for oil, has spurred debate among consumers, political leaders, academics and entrepreneurs about plausible alternatives. A […]


Oil will push U.S. inflation to 6%, CIBC’s Rubin forecasts

Oil will push U.S. inflation to 6%, CIBC’s Rubin forecasts thumbnail

The last bastion against an all-encompassing surge in U.S. inflation is set to fall, Jeff Rubin, chief economist at CIBC World Markets, said Wednesday. Wages are primed to jump as surging oil prices prompt the “triumphant return” of 1980s-style cost-of-living allowances (COLA), sending the U.S. inflation rate to 6% by 2009, Mr. Rubin said in […]


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