Tuesday , September 17 2019
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Bill Gates to take over from Mystic Meg

Crystal Ball

One of humanity’s greatest failings is that we take someone who is accomplished in one field and assume that they are competent in all fields.  It is in this light that we should, perhaps, view Bill Gates’ claims that we will see a clean energy breakthrough in the next 15 …

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Saudi Arabia’s chest-beating is unconvincing

capped fracking well

Oil prices fell yesterday after Abdalla El-Badri, secretary-general of OPEC and Ali al-Naimi, Saudi Arabian oil minister effectively ruled out curbs in supply.  However, Ali al-Naimi’s comment that Saudi Arabia can live with an oil price as low as $20 per barrel has been treated with some scepticism. While it is …

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Will US fracking take up the slack?

Arial view of fracking

Speaking at the IHS CERAWeek conference,  Abdalla El-Badri, secretary-general of OPEC dashed hopes of a deal to address the world oil glut.  Taking claims about the increased efficiency of US fracking at face value, El-Badri claimed that any OPEC cut in production would immediately be taken up by US Shale.  …

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Why is Britain embracing third world energy status?

Scrap metal heap

The decade 1995-2005 was a boom time for Britain.  Memories of the recession of the early Thatcher years had faded.  The Cold War was over.  We were a nation more at ease with itself.  We were “Cool Britannia” – the world leader in soft power.  A good deal of it …

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Global Wind Energy Capacity Just Overtook Nuclear

Wind Turbine

The latest figures from the Brussels based Global Wind Energy Council show that total global wind capacity has risen to 432.42 gigawatts, with China leading the way.  This gives wind a slight edge over the 382.55 gigawatts of nuclear capacity according to the London based World Nuclear Association. In 2015 …

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A gloomy week ahead for the “oil industry’s Davos”

Ceraweek logo

Oil industry insiders from around the world will come together in Houston Texas this week for the annual IHS CERAWeek conference – often dubbed the “energy industry Davos.”  And with the heady days of $140 a barrel oil a long way back in the rear view mirror; the mood is …

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Europe Follows Amber Rudd on a Dash for Gas… but at what cost?

EU Energy Union

The European Commission’s Energy Strategy published on Tuesday is heavily reliant upon imported gas for the next twenty years.  Although the document claims to be about “energy security”, like the policies adopted by the UK government, the strategy leaves the European Union dangerously exposed to disrupted supplies from Russia, Libya …

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Nuclear Power Use-By Date Extension

Heysham Nuclear Plant

Nuclear power operator EDF is to extend the operational lives of four of its UK nuclear power stations.  Heysham 1 and Hartlepool will continue to operate until 2024, while Heysham 2 and Torness will run until at least 2030. The reasons for the extension are threefold.  First, inspection of the …

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Former Minister Raises Energy Security Concerns

Gas storage tanks

Charles Hendry, who served as Minister of State for energy between 2010 and 2012, has hit out at complacency over the decline of North Sea gas production and the UK’s increasing dependence upon imported gas from Russia and the Middle East. In 2012, disrupted supply from Russia to Ukraine had …

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