Weekly Energy News Update – June 13th

While I was considering writing a bit about Qatar to start off, I think the news articles in this update illustrate the intensity of that issue well enough (and frankly it has completely overwhelmed Reuters for the past week, so if you want to know more just go here.) Instead, I think the beginning of these posts should continue to be a bit fun:

Driver Supercop from team "Maroc" gets out of his Microlino, during the start of the Wave Trophy 2017 tour, on Friday, June 9, 2017, in Zurich, Switzerland. The World Advanced Vehicle Expedition rally, now in its seventh edition, is the brainchild of

This pic comes from an EV rally that began in Switzerland this week.  Unfortunately the news piece does not go into the details of “Supercop from team Maroc”, so I am really hoping there is someone on the list studying these EV rallies and can provide a better explanation 🙂

Electric vehicle rally sets off in Switzerland (AP)

I have been up in the mountains of Norway for the past few days and this shot looking towards the Jotunheimen helps explain the delay in this week’s update. Always enjoy hiking on remote and majestic mountaintops, but it tends to put a damper on digital exchange.


Finance

BP violated contract when it blended Texas crude (Reuters)

Canada invites Chinese investment in oil sands (Reuters)


Grid

Battery storage: The next disruptive technology in the power sector (McKinsey)

We’ve discovered power grid-wrecking software (AP)


Labor

Norway oil workers agree wage deal, ending threat of strike (Reuters)

Coal unions call strike from June 19, will talk only to minister or secretary (India Times)


Pipeline

Standing Rock Documents Expose Inner Workings of “Surveillance-Industrial Complex” (The Intercept)

This is the second of three articles on this terrifying reality at the intersection of energy and state power.

Qatar has no plan to shut Dolphin gas pipeline to UAE despite rift (Reuters)

Most of the articles I have seen are focused on the impact the crisis has had on shipping out of Qatar, but few have noted the importance of this pipeline between the UAE and Qatar.

Virginia Power Company Pushing Employees to Protect Pipeline in Democratic Governor Primary (The Intercept)


Policy

CEOs Praised For Backing the Paris Accord Also Funded Lobbyists Pushing Trump to Withdraw (The Intercept)
Here is an interesting quote about membership from the IECA website:
“Corporate membership is exclusive to companies who are industrial energy consumers. This allows policy development that truly reflects a “consumers” point of view. Only corporate membership may vote on policy and decisions related to the organization.”

Supreme Court to rule on legality of patent review system (Reuters)

While this case is being argued due to conflicts over hydraulic fracking technology, it could have major implications for intellectual property rights as a whole. Definitely need to stay tuned!

Interior Secretary to make proposal on Bears Ears monument in test for protected land (Reuters)

Seeing that there is no actual oil, gas or coal resources in the designated area of the Bears Ears Monument , this seems like an example of symbolic politics that needs a rich anthropological analysis.

Agency shuts down long-running energy news digest (E&E News)

Unfortunately this is behind a paywall and I cannot find any additional information about this change at the U.S. Department of Energy. Perhaps someone else on the list knows more and could share? At present there is still a good deal of information available on the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy’s website.

China’s $10 billion strategic project in Myanmar sparks local ire (Reuters)

India’s power plants stranded as 50 million homes left in the dark (Bloomberg)

U.S. Gulf Coast groups concerned as Trump picks BP lawyer to top DOJ post (Reuters)

U.S. Army base goes green with renewable energy project (Reuters)

Apparently, decentralization of energy is important to U.S. policy making if it has strategic military implications

S.Korea plans energy U-turn away from coal, nuclear (Reuters)


Technology

Drilling rig in Norway gets all its power from land to cut emissions (Reuters)

Renault plans foray into energy market with mega battery (Reuters)

For electric cars to become a dominant mode of transportation, at some point the second hand battery market will need to become more developed. Renault-Nissan may have part of the solution here, but it would seem recycling will also be necessary.

World’s energy system not on track to meet climate goals (Reuters)

Yikes! “Only three out of 26 assessed technologies – electric vehicles, energy storage and mature variable renewables (solar PV and onshore wind) – are on track to meet climate targets, according to the IEA.

GE begins testing drones to inspect refineries, factories (Reuters)


Transportation

Number of electric vehicles on roads reaches two million (Reuters)

Still just a drop in the bucket… (.2% to be exact…)

Electric cars could soon charge on the move (India Times)


Coal

China to speed up closing small-scale coal mines to improve safety (Reuters)

Town That Helped Power Northwest Feels Left Behind In Shift Away From Coal (NPR)

India’s Adani backs go-ahead for $4 billion Australia coal mine (Reuters)


Gas

Gas shortages risk reversing ambitious push to expand Pakistan’s forests (Reuters)


Hydropower

Backers of Honduran dam opposed by murdered activist withdraw funding (Guardian)
Narrow canals system blocks Ranjit Sagar Dam’s power generation in Punjab (India Times)


Nuclear

India’s answer to Donald Trump on climate is nuclear power (Bloomberg)

The Nuclear Industry Is In Financial Meltdown (The Ecologist)


Petroleum

Crude oil, fuel shipping costs from Qatar set to rise on port ban (Reuters)

While the rising crisis in the Gulf has many connections with energy, this is perhaps one of the most pressing.

Qatar Gulf row roils LNG market, Shell tanker diverted (Reuters)

Petrobras removes contracting ban on Andrade Gutiérrez after plea deal (Reuters)

Oil production stages unlikely comeback in Congo Republic (Reuters)

Venezuelan refinery reels as PDVSA ships light oil to Cuba, Curacao (Reuters)

Colombia oil industry threatened by local opposition (Reuters)


Solar

India’s first solar satellite television service brings ‘magic’ to villages (Reuters)

IKEA’s New Jacksonville Store to be Covered by Solar Array (EnergyTrends)

Tesla, Sunrun expected to resume Nevada rooftop solar sales (Reuters)

World’s largest floating solar farm reflects China’s clean energy ambitions (AFP)

Solar energy boom turns to bust for Indian manufacturers (Reuters)

Vikram Solar planning to double manufacturing capacity in over three years (India Times)

Hmm, it would seem that the previous Reuters headline may be a bit excessive…


Wind

Lack of power lines hits sub-Saharan Africa’s biggest wind farm (Reuters)

A nice article that highlights how massive wind and solar projects, such as this project being built up around Lake Turkana, are dependent on the grid.

Competition for offshore wind ramps up in Massachusetts (AP)

Apple Adds 500MW of Wind and Solar Power in China, Targeting at 2GW (EnergyTrends)


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