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UK does the right thing… at the wrong time!

Oil Tanks

Data from the UK Department for Energy and Climate Change shows that North Sea oil and gas production rose last year – the first increase since 1999.  Oil production was 13.4 per cent higher and natural gas production was 7.8 per cent higher than in 2014. The additional production came …

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Could “sea eggs” solve our energy storage problem?

Sea Eggs

According to Rebecca Harrington in Tech Science European countries have added so much renewable energy generation that they are undermining electricity grids that were designed for large-scale fossil fuel generation: “Since renewable energies like wind and solar can’t provide energy 24/7, battery storage captures it for when the wind’s not …

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Demand for electric cars could crash the Grid


World electric vehicle (EV) sales grew by nearly 60% last year according to a new report from the Frankfurt School. Although EVs only make up a tiny fraction of vehicles on our roads, the fact that sales have grown in the face of low oil prices suggests that they could …

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More bad news in the North Sea

Oil Storm

Despite George Osborne’s budget measure to cut around £1bn of supplementary taxes on North Sea oil companies, investment in future production continues to fall. Until now, most of the losses resulting from low oil prices have been felt by the small oil companies.  However, global players like Shell and ConocoPhillips …

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The next generation of climate change disputes

Hydroelectric dam

As the tide of public opinion tips ever further toward the reality of climate change, a much greater arena of dispute has opened up.  Once we acknowledge that climate change is happening, we move on to the much thornier question of what we should do about it.  Here, the moral …

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Oil’s Minsky Moment… or something a lot worse?

Oil Crash

An editorial in the Financial Times notes the similarity between the volatility in traditional financial markets documented by economist Hyman Minsky and the new volatility in the oil market: “A period of stability leads to rising investment, financed by borrowing, which drives up asset prices until cash flows generated by those …

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Rooftop solar could provide 40 percent of US electricity

Rooftop Solar

A new study by the US National Renewable Energy Laboratory claims that rooftop solar alone could meet 40 percent of current US electricity demand.  The figure has been: “revised upwards by more than 80 per cent since the last study in 2008, mostly because of improvements of module efficiencies, building …

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Saudi Arabia seeks to lock-in market share

Oil Refinery South Africa

Faced with the massive increase in output from US shale, Saudi Arabia faced a stark choice between cutting production in order to maintain prices, and turning the taps on in order to maintain its share of the global market for oil.  It chose the latter; with the result that prices …

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UK oil production rises… for now

UK oil production rose last year according to a report from the US Energy Information Administration.  But before you get too excited, the sobering fact is that even with the increase of around 100,000 barrels per day; UK output is just a third of its 1999 peak. More alarmingly, the …

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Andrea Leadsom highlights Britain’s energy predicament

Andrea Leadsom

In taking on the anti-fracking movement, Minister of State for Energy, Andrea Leadsom has highlighted just how bad Britain’s energy predicament is.  In a briefing note on the Politics Home website she states: “As things stand, we have 40% of our gas being supplied from the North Sea basin and …

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