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Thomas Paine

To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

2 September - My Yahoo!

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Global Warming Policy Foundation * complete with 'bad reputation' warnoff

Alaska Explores Extracting Oil From Shale Rock

Sunday 2 September 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

Alaska, which has fallen behind North Dakota in oil output and whose Prudhoe Bay oil fields are waning, is exploring the possibility of extracting oil from the source rock on the state’s North Slope. Canada may have its Albertan oil sands, and North Dakota has its Bakken oil formation. But don’t count Alaska out when it comes to producing unconventional oil. Alaska, which has fallen behind North Dakota in oil output and whose Prudhoe Bay oil fields are waning, is exploring the possibility of extracting oil from the source rock on the state’s North Slope. The state has leased more than half a million acres … (Read More)

Green Protectionism: EU And China On Verge Of Solar Energy Price War?

Sunday 2 September 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has called for a frank assessment of a solar panel trade dispute with China. The EU is mulling an anti-dumping inquiry into China after the US took similar action in one of the world’s fastest-developing markets. “I suggest the European Commission and China try to solve the issue through communications, rather than by resorting to anti-dumping proceedings,” Merkel told reporters Thursday morning during her two-day trip to China. “There is still time, so the best way is consultation,” she said. Merkel struck a different tone on Friday, however: “We are not out of the woods yet. … My plea is that … (Read More)

Bangkok 2012: EU Signals It Will Not Adopt New Unilateral CO2 Target

Sunday 2 September 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

The European Union appears unlikely to adopt tougher targets for carbon emissions this year after an official at the UN climate talks in Bangkok was quoted as saying further cuts were ‘wishful thinking’.  The EU’s current ambitions for 2020 involve reducing emissions by 20% on 1990 levels, improving energy efficiency by 20% and increasing the share of renewables in the bloc’s energy mix by 20%. In recent months there have been moves for the EU to increase those 2020 targets to 25% or 30%, but a report from the PushEurope campaign group reveals that at an informal session of the UN talks currently taking place … (Read More)

Germany’s Energy Policy: Insane Or Just Plain Stupid?

Saturday 1 September 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

Germany’s middle-class is bearing the brunt of the green energy transition for both the industry and the poor. Soon Germany may not have the economic engine to carry the rest of Europe through its financial crisis. Angela Merkel will have to find another coalition or her government may fall. After the tsunami destroyed the Fukushima plants, Germany moved quickly to shut eight nuclear power plants, and made plans do away completely with their nuclear capability. Despite the best safety record of any industry in the country, and the critical role nuclear plays in fueling German industry, Germany’s past experience with large tsunamis was just too … (Read More)

Carbon Wars Go Global

Saturday 1 September 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

The Australian: In the latest proof of Labor’s “whatever it takes” strategy, the government has accentuated its climate change policy differences with Tony Abbott, while offering industry potential cost savings to make carbon pricing in Australia more acceptable. Labor’s aim is to change the politics surrounding its unpopular carbon pricing scheme. It seeks to project three messages — that carbon pricing is here to stay, in Australia and in the world; that the Opposition Leader’s aspiration to dismantle the scheme is doomed; and that business has an incentive to think about how to make carbon pricing work, not how to abolish it. This week’s announcement is … (Read More)

Shale Revolution Produces Oil Discovery In Poland

Saturday 1 September 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

San Leon Energy, a leadering player in the development of Poland nascent shale gas industry, provided the country’s resouce sector with news of a announces tight oil discovery. The drilling was targeting the Main Dolomite trend in the Southern Permian Basin and reached a depth of 1,167 meters. “Initial evaluation of the results from core and wireline logging results indicate the primary target in the Zechstein Main Dolomite is highly fractured and contains moveable oil. Oil was recovered to the surface during initial clean out of the well.” – the company informed. “It is very encouraging to be able to report oil in our first … (Read More)

Robert Zubrin: The Green War On The Poor

Saturday 1 September 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

The green tax plan is a declaration of war on the poor. In a nearly full-page op-ed appearing in the business section of the August 25 New York Times, Cornell professor Robert H. Frank lays out the new green agenda for tax policy. According to Professor Frank, stopping global warming may require carbon taxes of about $300 per ton of carbon dioxide emitted, and by implementing such taxes, we can also balance the federal budget. “If such a tax were phased in,” Frank says, “the prices of goods would rise gradually in proportion to the amount of carbon dioxide their production or use entailed. The price of gasoline, … (Read More)

Schlumberger’s Clever Frack Takes Aim At Gas Costs

Saturday 1 September 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

Production costs of natural gas from unconventional fields could tumble in the United States if a new technique developed by Schlumberger lives up to its billing. The world’s largest oilfield services company by market value and others working in the industry have suffered this year because the runaway success of hydraulic fracturing (fracking) and horizontal drilling techniques to extract so-called unconventional gas has created a glut and caused a price slide. But using a proprietary system called Hiway that only became commercially viable last year, Schlumberger’s fracker in chief believes he has knocked a lump out of the infant industry’s three major cost components; water, … (Read More)

China’s Underground Race For Shale Gas

Saturday 1 September 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

A new land rush is hitting China. This time, it’s not about investments in high-priced urban real estate, but about underground energy resources in provinces such as Guizhou and Anhui. About 70 Chinese companies — from large, state-owned energy companies to private sector firms — are lining up to bid in China’s second auction of shale gas exploration rights, expected to take place this summer, according to the China Daily. “The activity is feverish,” says Ming Sung, Shanghai-based chief representative of the Clean Air Task Force (CATF), a Boston nonprofit working with the Chinese government and companies to introduce environmentally responsible shale gas mining practices. According … (Read More)

Tim Wilson: EU Carbon Link Just More Hot Air

Saturday 1 September 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

ANY business that buys cheap European emissions permits now may find them worthless by the end of the year. Linking emissions trading schemes isn’t as easy as the Gillard government makes it out to be. On Tuesday, Climate Change Minister Greg Combet announced that the government was scrapping the floor price for carbon permits in a post-2015 emissions trading scheme. The rationale is that it will remove the need for extra complex regulation for Australia’s ETS now that it will be linked to Europe’s. If the price floor were kept in place it would create a regulatory nightmare for our government as it chased companies … (Read More)

Hopes Of Slashing CO2 Emissions Just Blowing In The Wind

Saturday 1 September 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

ALONGSIDE the politics of the carbon tax, a floor price, a linking to Europe or whether a direct investment scheme would be better than a market-based scheme, the bottom line surely must be whether any carbon emissions actually are being saved. The early signs are that a $23 carbon tax has displaced some marginal high-cost generation in South Australia and Queensland, but it is too soon to say whether this is a trend or coincidence. But any gains are swamped by the findings of a two-year analysis of Victoria’s wind-farm developments by mechanical engineer Hamish Cumming. His analysis shows that despite receiving hundreds of millions of dollars from green energy … (Read More)

New Paper: The Phase Relation Between Atmospheric CO2 And Global Temperature

Friday 31 August 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

An important new paper published today in Global and Planetary Change finds that changes in CO2 follow rather than lead global air surface temperature and that “CO2 released from use of fossil fuels have little influence on the observed changes in the amount of atmospheric CO2.“ The paper finds the “overall global temperature change sequence of events appears to be from 1) the ocean surface to 2) the land surface to 3) the lower troposphere,” in other words, the opposite of claims by global warming alarmists that CO2 in the atmosphere drives land and ocean temperatures. Instead, just as in the ice cores, CO2 levels are found to … (Read More)

Gas Prices Around The World

Friday 31 August 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

A few weeks ago Bloomberg featured the “Highest & Cheapest Gas Prices by Country, where they ranked 60 countries by the average retail gas price at the pump and by the “pain at the pump,” which is measured by the percentage of average daily income needed to buy a gallon of gas.  Here are some of the findings: 1. Based on both the retail price of gas and “pain at the pump,” Venezuela has the cheapest gas in the world at $0.09 cents per gallon, cheaper even than bottled water. 2. The world’s highest retail gas price is found in Norway, where it would cost almost $400 … (Read More)

UN Panel Blows Cold Air On EU Renewables Policy

Friday 31 August 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

A United Nations body has found that the European Union has failed in its commitments towards transparency and public participation in renewable energy policies – a move which has been hailed as a victory by wind farm opposition groups. The Compliance Committee for the Aarhus Convention, an international agreement on environment policy transparency, claimed the EU – which is a signatory – has failed to put in place a proper regulatory framework and clear instructions on how to consult local populations in their renewable energy plans. In the firing line are the national renewable energy action plans (NREAP) that all 27 EU countries have submitted under the … (Read More)

Green Taxes On Fuel Bills Nearly Double, Consumer Group Says

Friday 31 August 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

Green taxes on energy bills have nearly doubled in two years to almost £100 as companies pass on the costs of becoming environmentally-friendly to households. Some industry insiders believe that bills could increase by between 50 per cent and 100 per cent by 2020. According to Energyhelpline.com, the website, green taxes make up £91.50 of a typical annual dual fuel bill of £1,310. This compares to £56.50 in February 2010. The website, which based the figures on statistics from Ofgem, said that the total extra cost to UK households of green taxes and rising fuel prices is over £2 billion a year. Energy companies are … (Read More)

Russia: Shell-Shocked From U.S. Shale Over Shtokman

Friday 31 August 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

Russia will just be one of many gas producers competing for European and Asian export share. At no stage will Moscow be setting the price or volumes of global gas supplies. Anybody left paying oil indexed prices in Europe can expect to go bust. It’s been coming for a long time, but Gazprom has finally canned its 3.9tcm Shtokman gas development in the Barents Sea. France’s Total and Norway’s Statoil can breathe a collective sigh of relief as Gazprom’s triumvirate partners, ducking out of an increasingly expensive $20bn Arctic development. But as far as Russian Inc. is concerned, this is a strategic shocker. Far from … (Read More)

Russia To Adjust Energy Strategy Due To Shale Gas Boom

Friday 31 August 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

The Russian Energy Ministry plans to adjust its strategy for the period until 2030 because of the growth in shale gas production in the United States and liquefied natural gas output in the Asia-Pacific region, Energy Minister Alexander Novak said, Interfax reported Thursday. Recent technological breakthroughs have spurred a global shale gas boom, which has sent prices into a downward spiral and eroded Gazprom’s sway in the natural gas industry. “We’re currently thinking of adjusting our energy strategy to take into account the challenges facing the sector in general, and the changes that have taken place in recent years, including those related to the shale … (Read More)

Mark P. Mills: The Next Great Growth Cycle

Thursday 30 August 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

Today’s techno-pessimists say technology and America have plateaued. Such naysayers flourish during economic recessions. They have been wrong in every one of the 19 economic downturns we have experienced since 1912. They’re wrong again. Every time reality proves Malthusians wrong following each crisis, they say a variant on the same thing: I may have been wrong before, but I’m right this time. Apple went public in December 1980, before today’s 50 million millennials were born. And there followed the longest run of economic growth in modern history, spanning five presidencies from Reagan through Clinton. Apple grew to become the world’s largest market cap company and a … (Read More)

IPPR Credibility Gone With The Wind

Thursday 30 August 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

Earlier this month Guido showed how he who pays the IPPR calls the tune, and now it seems the Labour wonk-shop have been at it once again. Today they have published a report making the case for wind power. Apparently wind is an effective way of reducing carbon emissions and can provide a secure and reliable source of energy for the future. Who would argue such a thing? Dig a little deeper and you will see that two of the three authors of the report are senior employees of GL Garrad Hassan: It turns out that GL Garrad Hassan is an energy company that specialises in both … (Read More)

The Burst Pipe-Dream Of Energy Saving

Thursday 30 August 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

Policy-makers are calling for oil and electricity to be used ever more efficiently. But scientists say that measures like banning light bulbs and home insulation are as good as useless to help reduce energy consumption. The family of Karl-Günther Lohas is the dream of Germany’s energy policy: The teacher from Stuttgart has replaced all light bulbs, from the cellar to the attic, with LED lights long before the ban against light bulbs goes into effect in September. He has rendered harmless the energy-consuming stand-by mode of the TV with a timer and invested in a new refrigerator with an efficiency rating of A Triple Plus. … (Read More)

Antarctic Warming & The Guardian

Thursday 30 August 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

Letters to the editor, 28 August: You report (Arctic ice melt likely to break record as 100,000 sq km disappears per day, 24 August) that research just published in Nature says that warming in the Antarctic “where temperatures have risen about 1.5C over the past 50 years” is unusual but not unprecedented. That gives the impression that typical temperatures in Antarctica have risen by about 1.5C. In fact, there was no statistically significant increase in average Antarctica temperatures over the 50 years to 2006. (The relevant study, of which I was a co-author, was published in Journal of Climate last year.) The latest Nature research refers to warming at … (Read More)

Germany Hits Brakes on Race to Renewable Energy Future

Thursday 30 August 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

The share of renewable energies in Germany’s power mix has shot up so high that the electricity grid and the subsidy framework has been unable to keep up. Now, the government wants to slow down the process. German commentators say that the current chaos endangers the entire project. Many scoffed at the initial target that Chancellor Angela Merkel set last June, when she announced that Germany was turning away from nuclear power and toward renewable energies. Her government decided that by 2020 renewables would make up a 35 percent share of the energy mix. It was, said many experts at the time, an impossible goal. … (Read More)

Dark Clouds Gather Over China’s Once-Booming Solar Industry

Thursday 30 August 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

China’s push into solar energy was supposed to be a proud example of how the country was advancing into hi-tech manufacturing. But now the whole sector is on the brink of bankruptcy. Two years ago, LDK Solar, one of China’s largest solar panel makers, built a new, state-of-the-art factory in the central city of Hefei. It sits in one of the city’s industrial parks, a big LDK Solar logo on its wall, with the New York-listed company’s slogan underneath: “Lighting the Future”. “It cost 2.5 billion yuan (£250m) to build, the majority of the equipment was imported from Germany, and it hired 5,000 staff,” said … (Read More)

Benny Peiser: Europe ‘Dithering’ Over Joining Shale Revolution

Wednesday 29 August 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

The blockage of shale gas exploration has led to a new rush to coal and could leave Europe even more reliant on Russia for its energy needs – but there are signs that the anti-shale campaign is losing momentum, says Benny Peiser European countries may soon have to import shale gas from Russia if the green energy lobby has its way. The prospect of even deeper reliance on Russian gas together with a new rush to coal burning may be the unintended yet inevitable consequence of the ongoing opposition by green campaigners and policy-makers to domestic European shale development. Just as the German phase-out of … (Read More)

Coal Greens Love Buoyed By Shale Gas Hydraulic Fracking

Wednesday 29 August 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

The world’s most abundant fossil fuel could be tapped without moving mountains, delivered without trucks or trains and burned without greenhouse-gas emissions. The technology to make this possible has been around for decades. Underground coal gasification was pioneered by Sir William Siemens in the 1860s to light London’s streets. Vladimir Lenin hailed the method in a 1913 article in Pravda for its potential to rescue Russians from hazards of underground mines. Despite its early boosters, the technology never caught on in the U.S., mostly for cost reasons. Now the improvements in seismic mapping and drilling that lit a fire under the U.S. fracking boom may … (Read More)

Russia Sees Shale Gas As Eventual Risk To Gazprom’s Revenue

Wednesday 29 August 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

Russia’s economy ministry sees “serious” risks posed by shale gas to the revenue of Gazprom beginning in 2014, as higher supply from the nontraditional hydrocarbons may hurt prices and demand for Russia’s pipeline gas. “Gazprom had undervalued the importance of shale gas, but is starting to look at it seriously,” Deputy Economy Minister Andrei Klepach said Tuesday as he presented a weaker outlook for the country in 2012 and beyond. Russia satisfies about a quarter of Europe’s demand for gas, which generates revenue for the budget. Mr. Klepach added that the ministry also saw a lower outlook for gas prices in Europe, driven by both … (Read More)

New Evidence That Water Vapor Is A Negative Feedback

Wednesday 29 August 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

A paper published today in the Journal of Geophysical Research asks the question, “Why does the temperature rise faster in the arid region of northwest China?” The runaway greenhouse theory alleges that warming from greenhouse gases will be amplified by increased evaporation and atmospheric water vapor. According to the theory, wet areas with the most atmospheric water vapor should warm faster than arid areas with less. However, observations from 1960-2010 show that the dry region of China warmed faster than the rest of China and the entire globe. The authors explain this apparent paradox as primarily due to the Siberian High, a natural atmospheric circulation. … (Read More)

Merkel’s ‘Green’ Shift Forces Germany To Burn More Coal

Tuesday 28 August 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

Germany’s largest utilities are shunning cleaner-burning natural gas because it’s more costly, while the collapsing cost of carbon permits means there’s little penalty for burning coal. European Union carbon emissions may rise 43 million metric tons this year because of increased coal burning at power stations. Chancellor Angela Merkel’s government says RWE AG (RWE)’s new power plant that can supply 3.4 million homes aids her plan to exit nuclear energy and switch to cleaner forms of generation. It’s fired with coal. The startup of the 2,200-megawatt station near Cologne last week shows how Europe’s largest economy is relying more on the most-polluting fuel. Coal consumption … (Read More)

US Energy Revolution: Fossil Fuels To Keep Booming No Matter Who’s President

Tuesday 28 August 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

Despite the vicious political attacks over energy policy in the United States, the recent boom in oil and gas production will likely continue, no matter who wins the White House. Whether it’s a Republican or a Democrat in the Oval Office, the energy boom that’s occurred in this country over the last few years is unlikely to subside. On Thursday Mitt Romney pledged to make North America energy independent by 2020. That goal was unthinkable a decade ago. But a lot has changed in the last few years, largely thanks to higher oil prices. The technology to extract oil and gas from shale rock was commercialized. … (Read More)

New Paper: Arctic Sea Ice Extent 8,000 Years Ago Was Less Than Half Of ‘Record’ Low 2007 Level

Tuesday 28 August 2012 | Posted by: Administrator

  A paper published in Science finds summer Arctic Sea Ice extent during the Holocene Thermal Maximum 8,000 years ago was “less than half of the record low 2007 level.” The paper finds a “general buildup of sea ice from ~ 6,000 years before the present” which reached a maximum during the Little Ice Age and “attained its present (year 2000) extent at 4,000 years before the present” Horizontal axis is number of years before the present. Multiyear sea ice reached a minimum between ~8500-6000 years ago during the Holocene Thermal Maximum (HTM). Excerpt: In general, our sea-ice record for North Greenland follows the Holocene climate development, … (Read More)
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