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Shell Sketches Future With Drastically Fewer Fossil Fuels

Discuss research and forecasts regarding hydrocarbon depletion.

Shell Sketches Future With Drastically Fewer Fossil Fuels

Unread postby vox_mundi » Tue 27 Mar 2018, 11:44:21

Shell Sketches Future With Drastically Fewer Fossil Fuels

Image

Coal, oil and natural gas would plummet within the next couple of decades in a new report Royal Dutch Shell released Monday, envisioning a future where world leaders cut greenhouse gas emissions as laid out in the 2015 Paris climate deal.

Why it matters:
This is a company sketching a potential future where its primary products precipitously drop in use. That’s like [i]McDonald’s imagining a future without beef hamburgers.[/i] Meanwhile, Shell is one of the most aggressive global hydrocarbon producers addressing climate change by investing in other energy technologies.

Highlights of this hypothetical future:
- Governments adopt carbon taxes just under $50 per ton by 2030 that reach $200 by 2070.
Global coal demand has already peaked, oil demand peaks around 2025 and natural gas peaks around 2035.

- Solar becomes the dominant energy source around 2055.

- The shift to renewable energy is “affordable, being well within historical spending on the new energy system as a share of global GDP.”

Flashback:
- Shell CEO Ben Van Beurden told Axios earlier this month that oil demand could peak within seven years if the world took drastic action to cut carbon emissions — which is a big "if." That deal is not legally binding, and its force is in question given that President Trump has vowed to withdraw America from it.
... “It depends on what you want to believe. If you believe that Paris is going to be a success, that somehow the nations of this planet are going to get our act together, are going to be effective in devising and enforcing policies that will decarbonize the energy system, my expectation is then that oil demand will peak in 2025, 2026. That’s the Goldilocks scenario. It all needs to come together.”
— van Beurden

- van Beurden said he remains disappointed that Trump is pulling America out of the Paris deal, but said a shift to lower-carbon energy is “inevitable.”

- van Beurden’s comments on peak oil demand appear to be the most aggressive by any oil and gas executive on a topic that is central to the industry’s future profitability — and climate change.

- Shell announced late last year it would aim to cut the "net carbon footprint of its energy products by around half by 2050.”


U.S. Energy Market Found To Be More Unstable Over Past Decade

A trio of researchers with Carnegie Mellon University has found that the U.S. energy market has become more unstable over the past decade, and because of that, expert predictions have become more error prone. In their paper published in the journal Nature Energy, Evan Sherwin, Max Henrion and Inês Azevedo describe their study of the volatility of the U.S. energy sector, what they found, and suggest that some of the instability may be due to structural changes in the U.S. and world energy systems.

... The trio came to this conclusion after conducting a study of the energy system in the U.S. More specifically, they looked at energy statistics from 1952 to 2015, such as production numbers and prices. As part of their study, they looked at volatility for each year, which was calculated by factoring in the amount of change and how large it was. They also compared predictions made by energy experts with actual outcomes to see how well they fared over the same time period.

The researchers report that the most recent decade was the most volatile. They also found that the most recent decade proved to be the most challenging for experts to predict, as well, as they were wrong more often than in previous decades.

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Year-on-year changes for two energy quantities.

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Extreme changes for 17 energy quantities, from 1949 to 2014.

Estimation of the year-on-year volatility and the unpredictability of the United States energy system, Nature Energy 2018
Last edited by vox_mundi on Tue 27 Mar 2018, 12:11:22, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Shell Sketches Future With Drastically Fewer Fossil Fuel

Unread postby KaiserJeep » Tue 27 Mar 2018, 11:59:09

I'll believe this when I see it. Wait a minute, I'll turn 67 this year, so AFAIAC, it won't ever happen.
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Warning: Messages timestamped before April 1, 2016, 06:00 PST were posted by the unmodified human KaiserJeep 1.0
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Re: Shell Sketches Future With Drastically Fewer Fossil Fuel

Unread postby Plantagenet » Tue 27 Mar 2018, 17:21:56



Is Shell trying to fool people with their graphs? Look at their graph....they show oil use dropping since 1980! Shell shows oil consumption going down and down through time but actually global oil consumption is much higher now then it was back in 1980.

Back here in the real world oil use today is over 30% greater then it was in 1980----and its still going up.

This Shell report seems to be a bunch of nonsensical politically correct hoo-haw.

Given that Shell can't even present the facts about what has happened in the past honestly, its hard to take their projections into the future seriously, especially when the reason they give for the projected declines in oil consumption is the Paris Accords----when the Paris accords do not not call for cuts in fossil fuel consumption. In fact when you add up all the statements from the signatory countries, the paris accords call INCREASES in fossil fuel consumption, i.e. business as usual.

Cheers!
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Re: Shell Sketches Future With Drastically Fewer Fossil Fuel

Unread postby vox_mundi » Tue 27 Mar 2018, 18:50:58

Plantagenet wrote:


Is Shell trying to fool people with their graphs? Look at their graph....they show oil use dropping since 1980! Shell shows oil consumption going down and down through time but actually global oil consumption is much higher now then it was back in 1980.

Back here in the real world oil use today is over 30% greater then it was in 1980----and its still going up.

This Shell report seems to be a bunch of nonsensical politically correct hoo-haw.

Given that Shell can't even present the facts about what has happened in the past honestly, its hard to take their projections into the future seriously, especially when the reason they give for the projected declines in oil consumption is the Paris Accords----when the Paris accords do not not call for cuts in fossil fuel consumption. In fact when you add up all the statements from the signatory countries, the paris accords call INCREASES in fossil fuel consumption, i.e. business as usual.

Cheers!

Read the graph title slower, and more carefully.

The graph title refers to the Percent of Global Energy Use by Product Type - measured in percent - not tons, bbl, or cu.ft.

Everything is calculated as Gj. The individual components are compared against the total and expressed as a percent.

The percent of energy from gas, coal, and renewables, hydro nuclear increased relative to oil from 1980 to 2017 even though the amount of oil also increased during that period - just gas, coal and renewables increased faster - meaning they are a growing slice of the pie.

Remember, every year still has to total 100%

Get it?
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Re: Shell Sketches Future With Drastically Fewer Fossil Fuel

Unread postby vtsnowedin » Tue 27 Mar 2018, 19:36:27

Dose anybody know off hand what a $50/ton carbon tax works out to in $/gallon of gasoline or diesel?
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Re: Shell Sketches Future With Drastically Fewer Fossil Fuel

Unread postby vtsnowedin » Tue 27 Mar 2018, 19:47:36

Poking around I found this.
https://www.hunker.com/12284423/how-to- ... -generator
From that figure of10,884 grams of CO2 per gallon of diesel burned I get very close to 100 gallons to emit one metric ton of CO2 so that would be fifty cents a gallon.
Not a world breaker by any means and probably not enough to suppress demand sufficiently. I suppose you have to start them out slow then turn up the heat like the frog in the pot.
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Re: Shell Sketches Future With Drastically Fewer Fossil Fuel

Unread postby Plantagenet » Tue 27 Mar 2018, 22:11:18

vox_mundi wrote:Shell Sketches Future With Drastically Fewer Fossil Fuels

Image


The graph title refers to the Percent of Global Energy Use by Product Type - measured in percent - not tons, bbl, or cu.ft.

Everything is calculated as Gj. The individual components are compared against the total and expressed as a percent.

The percent of energy from gas, coal, and renewables, hydro nuclear increased relative to oil from 1980 to 2017 even though the amount of oil also increased during that period - just gas, coal and renewables increased faster - meaning they are a growing slice of the pie.

Remember, every year still has to total 100%

Get it?


Sure. Thanks for the explanation.

However, my point remains-----the graph doesn't match the actual data on world energy consumption. Fossil fuels currently account for almost 90% of world energy consumption---not the 75-80% shown in the Shell plot. Renewable energy and nuclear account for a bit over 10% of global energy production---not the ca. 20-25% shown in the Shell plot.

Image
World energy consumption from the annual Statistical Review of World Energy

Its hard for me to take the Shell projections into the future seriously when they can't even get the data right for past and present global energy use. And even Shell's own CEO admits that their assumption that the Paris Accords will magically cause fossil fuel use to rapidly dwindle away starting 5-6 years down the road is tantamount to a "Goldilocks scenario".

Image
Even the CEO of Shell admits their projection for a rapid decline in fossil fuel use is a Goldilocks scenario. That means it isn't very likely to occur.

Cheers!
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Re: Shell Sketches Future With Drastically Fewer Fossil Fuel

Unread postby Outcast_Searcher » Tue 27 Mar 2018, 23:01:37

vtsnowedin wrote:Poking around I found this.
https://www.hunker.com/12284423/how-to- ... -generator
From that figure of10,884 grams of CO2 per gallon of diesel burned I get very close to 100 gallons to emit one metric ton of CO2 so that would be fifty cents a gallon.
Not a world breaker by any means and probably not enough to suppress demand sufficiently. I suppose you have to start them out slow then turn up the heat like the frog in the pot.

I use 20 pounds of CO2 per gallon of gasoline as my round number for calculating things, so your 100 gallons per metric ton is reasonably close, for round numbers anyway.

Looking at web links, with diesel you get about 10% more CO2 per gallon, but I'm talking back-of-the-envelope calculations, to get a sense of the scale.

I think that you're right that you'd have to start small and keep increasing things to:

1). Make it politically viable to get started.
2). Make the cost enough over time to truly change behavior in a meaningful way.
Given the track record of the perma-doomer blogs, I wouldn't bet a fast crash doomer's money on their predictions.
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Re: Shell Sketches Future With Drastically Fewer Fossil Fuel

Unread postby kublikhan » Wed 28 Mar 2018, 00:41:22

Plantagenet wrote:Sure. Thanks for the explanation.

However, my point remains-----the graph doesn't match the actual data on world energy consumption. Fossil fuels currently account for almost 90% of world energy consumption---not the 75-80% shown in the Shell plot. Renewable energy and nuclear account for a bit over 10% of global energy production---not the ca. 20-25% shown in the Shell plot.

Its hard for me to take the Shell projections into the future seriously when they can't even get the data right for past and present global energy use. And even Shell's own CEO admits that their assumption that the Paris Accords will magically cause fossil fuel use to rapidly dwindle away starting 5-6 years down the road is tantamount to a "Goldilocks scenario".
The discrepancy arises because most global energy statistics don't include traditional biomass in their energy data. It is decentralized and undocumented so it is difficult to gather precise energy data on it. However if you include the energy consumption via traditional biomass, Shell's data for 1980 to present makes more sense.

About 2.4 billion people rely on traditional biomass, mainly for cooking and heating (IEA, 2002). Essentially all of those users of traditional fuels reside in developing countries, and most of them live in rural areas; low incomes and the lack of access to alternative, modern fuels explain their choice of traditional energy supply. By the late 1990s, IEA (1998) estimated that biomass accounted for approximately 14 percent of final energy consumption, roughly on par with electricity (14 percent).

Despite the significance of biomass at the world level, this energy source is often treated as a mere footnote item in most sources of global energy statistics. Traditional biomass energy usually is excluded from analyses of global energy demand trends. This energy source is not regularly monitored in the same way as conventional or commercial energy sources because of the difficulties associated with collecting biomass energy data and the decentralized nature of biomass energy systems. Nevertheless, most large countries gather at least some data on traditional biomass energy, and some international organizations assemble those national data and provide additional estimations. The Appendix to this paper summarizes the main international sources of this data. Biomass energy is mainly used in the household sector in developing countries, where on average it accounts for about 75 percent of the total final energy use. However, traditional biomass also provides an important fuel source for traditional industries and for services in urban areas as well as in rural zones.
Macro Patterns in the Use of Traditional Biomass Fuels
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Re: Shell Sketches Future With Drastically Fewer Fossil Fuel

Unread postby vox_mundi » Wed 28 Mar 2018, 03:05:55

plant wrote: ... Fossil fuels currently account for almost 90% of world energy consumption---not the 75-80% shown in the Shell plot. Renewable energy and nuclear account for a bit over 10% of global energy production---not the ca. 20-25% shown in the Shell plot


You forgot hydropower plant

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Re: Shell Sketches Future With Drastically Fewer Fossil Fuel

Unread postby Cottager » Wed 28 Mar 2018, 08:41:55

Plantagenet wrote:
vox_mundi wrote:Shell Sketches Future With Drastically Fewer Fossil Fuels

Image


The graph title refers to the Percent of Global Energy Use by Product Type - measured in percent - not tons, bbl, or cu.ft.

Everything is calculated as Gj. The individual components are compared against the total and expressed as a percent.

The percent of energy from gas, coal, and renewables, hydro nuclear increased relative to oil from 1980 to 2017 even though the amount of oil also increased during that period - just gas, coal and renewables increased faster - meaning they are a growing slice of the pie.

Remember, every year still has to total 100%

Get it?


Sure. Thanks for the explanation.

However, my point remains-----the graph doesn't match the actual data on world energy consumption. Fossil fuels currently account for almost 90% of world energy consumption---not the 75-80% shown in the Shell plot. Renewable energy and nuclear account for a bit over 10% of global energy production---not the ca. 20-25% shown in the Shell plot.

Image
World energy consumption from the annual Statistical Review of World Energy

Its hard for me to take the Shell projections into the future seriously when they can't even get the data right for past and present global energy use. And even Shell's own CEO admits that their assumption that the Paris Accords will magically cause fossil fuel use to rapidly dwindle away starting 5-6 years down the road is tantamount to a "Goldilocks scenario".

Image
Even the CEO of Shell admits their projection for a rapid decline in fossil fuel use is a Goldilocks scenario. That means it isn't very likely to occur.

Cheers!


If by fuels you mean only substances used to generate electricity and to move machines around - then probably you're right. But if we include all biofuels used worldwide for home heating and preparing of food - probably including them renewables could reach 20% boundary.
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Re: Shell Sketches Future With Drastically Fewer Fossil Fuel

Unread postby Plantagenet » Wed 28 Mar 2018, 11:08:19

vox_mundi wrote:
You forgot hydropower plant


No...thats definitely included in the annual statistical survey of world energy.

The discrepancy seems to be due to biomass energy, as Cottager proposed in his post above.

Biomass energy is very difficult to quantify, and its debatable if it should even be counted as an "energy source" like oil, NG, hydro, wind, etc. since it almost never actually is an energy source in the marketplace......its generally harvested and used in a single household. For instance, I cut firewood on my woodlot and use a wood stove to heat my house here in Alaska......but I don't think my personal firewood cache is quite the same thing as the oil, coal, NG, electrical and other industries.

Cheers!
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Re: Shell Sketches Future With Drastically Fewer Fossil Fuel

Unread postby ROCKMAN » Wed 28 Mar 2018, 11:38:24

A potential big carbon tax on motor fuels? Since 1959 the fed politicians have had the nerve to increase the motor fuel tax by about $0.15/gallon. Or about 1/4 of a penny per year. And now some fantasy it could be increased by as much as $0.50/gal in s as short time? Sure, as soon as every member of Congress decides he doesn't want to be re-elected. LOL.
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Re: Shell Sketches Future With Drastically Fewer Fossil Fuel

Unread postby Outcast_Searcher » Wed 28 Mar 2018, 19:05:53

ROCKMAN wrote:A potential big carbon tax on motor fuels? Since 1959 the fed politicians have had the nerve to increase the motor fuel tax by about $0.15/gallon. Or about 1/4 of a penny per year. And now some fantasy it could be increased by as much as $0.50/gal in s as short time? Sure, as soon as every member of Congress decides he doesn't want to be re-elected. LOL.

Yup. Heaven forbid we even try to take a meaningful step to disincentivize fossil fuel burning, since it might cost some politician an election, or might be inconvenient for some voters.

Instead, let's wait until the problems are so bad they are causing massive food shortages, water shortages, horrendous weather patterns, displacement of many millions of people via predictable SLR, etc, and only THEN try burning less fossil fuels. That approach should work MUCH better. :roll:

(I keep wondering how bad the obvious effects of AGW have to get before a LOT of voters get RPO (really pissed off) and it becomes their "single issue" for voting. I'm pretty much there. Now I just need some serious politicians to demonstrate why I should vote for them. Not that I'm expecting a lot of action on that front anytime soon). :(
Given the track record of the perma-doomer blogs, I wouldn't bet a fast crash doomer's money on their predictions.
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Re: Shell Sketches Future With Drastically Fewer Fossil Fuel

Unread postby ROCKMAN » Wed 28 Mar 2018, 19:32:25

Outcast - "Heaven forbid we even try to take a meaningful step to disincentivize fossil fuel burning.." What do you mean "we", white man? LOL. Who exactly is this "we" that would readily accept a huge increase in the price of a commodity that we consume very disproportionally to our percent of the global population? You're certainly free to speak for any group you wish. But you need to clarify whose mouths you're putting those words into. Especially if you're implying they represent anything close to a majority. Otherwise you're just speaking for just one lonely voice in the wilderness.
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Re: Shell Sketches Future With Drastically Fewer Fossil Fuel

Unread postby Zarquon » Thu 29 Mar 2018, 00:35:43

We had this discussion a few months ago, just look for "Republicans introduce carbon tax" or similar thread title. And IIRC I posted a graph showing what record-high gas prices did to annual miles driven in the US in 2009 or so. If an increase of a dollar or more doesn't discourage driving, 50 cents isn't going to force the Rockman into selling vegetables again. And an increase of $2/a is just adjusting the tax level to inflation.

On the other hand, introducing a harmless CO2 tax pretty would pretty much silence the critics. After that, any mention of CO2 and oil would evoke the same answer: "we're already taxing the stuff to high heaven. What ELSE do you nutjobs want?".

Why do you think Exxon's CEO Rex Tillerson called for a CO2 tax some ten years ago?
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Re: Shell Sketches Future With Drastically Fewer Fossil Fuel

Unread postby ROCKMAN » Thu 29 Mar 2018, 09:38:17

Z – “…to force the Rockman into selling vegetables again.” Actually, during in the 80’s bust I was trying to sell Lincoln-Mercury’s. An educated geologist is not suited to do much of anything else other then geology. LOL.

And the reason Rex et al are never going to be very worried about CO2 taxes or increased motor fuel taxes: as long as they are applied equally to all companies they would simply be passed thru to the consumers. And the politicians know that ExxonMobil et al will take out full page adds explaining that fact to the public. And that possibility scares the crap out of those politicians.
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Re: Shell Sketches Future With Drastically Fewer Fossil Fuel

Unread postby Outcast_Searcher » Thu 29 Mar 2018, 12:09:44

ROCKMAN wrote:And the reason Rex et al are never going to be very worried about CO2 taxes or increased motor fuel taxes: as long as they are applied equally to all companies they would simply be passed thru to the consumers. And the politicians know that ExxonMobil et al will take out full page adds explaining that fact to the public. And that possibility scares the crap out of those politicians.

All corporate taxes are passed on to consumers in the end, as long as they're broadly based. People broadly not understanding that (and I agree with you that many to most don't) is an example of the sad consequences of politicians getting what they want -- an ignorant electorate to feed upon.

What I'd like to see is an intelligent tax that would scale up significantly as people used more. Of course, this would require tracking and validation, and likely lead to all kinds of cheating and corruption.

So, since it's too difficult/inconvenient to fix, let's just destroy the planet instead. Unfortunate, but at least it's a future problem. (No not my attitude -- but the apparent prevailing attitude.)
Last edited by Outcast_Searcher on Thu 29 Mar 2018, 12:26:14, edited 1 time in total.
Given the track record of the perma-doomer blogs, I wouldn't bet a fast crash doomer's money on their predictions.
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Re: Shell Sketches Future With Drastically Fewer Fossil Fuel

Unread postby Revi » Thu 29 Mar 2018, 12:22:50

We are going to see a future with less fossil fuels, but the average person won't know it. It won't be because of climate agreements. We are going to lose access to them. We'll all have our phones and call an Uber to get around, or walk. The great thing about walking is that it uses much less fossil fuels, and you can carry along a bag and look for bottles and cans as well. We'll use a lot less fossil fuel in the winter too huddling in our tar paper shacks along the interstate overpass. See, the future isn't so bleak after all!
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Re: Shell Sketches Future With Drastically Fewer Fossil Fuel

Unread postby Outcast_Searcher » Thu 29 Mar 2018, 12:46:05

Revi wrote:We are going to see a future with less fossil fuels, but the average person won't know it. It won't be because of climate agreements. We are going to lose access to them. We'll all have our phones and call an Uber to get around, or walk. The great thing about walking is that it uses much less fossil fuels, and you can carry along a bag and look for bottles and cans as well. We'll use a lot less fossil fuel in the winter too huddling in our tar paper shacks along the interstate overpass. See, the future isn't so bleak after all!

In the first world, before shopping for tar paper shacks, perhaps it would make sense to wait for some objective evidence of actual supply shortages -- at least the beginning of a meaningful trend? Oh, and that would be shortages of relatively cheap, convenient, usuable energy for things like heating, motorized transport, etc. So that will include solar, wind, batteries, etc, which will be growing at a significant pace in coming decades.
Given the track record of the perma-doomer blogs, I wouldn't bet a fast crash doomer's money on their predictions.
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