Weekly Energy News Update – June 25th

This week’s News Update is brought to you by Last Week Tonight. Last Sunday evening John Oliver gave one of his best performances to date and it is all about the coal industry in the U.S. You can see the segment in its entirety here:

However, I would encourage you to do so soon. Oliver has attracted a defamation suit by one of the coal executives he critiques in the segment.

John Oliver, a giant squirrel and a defamation lawsuit by a coal industry titan (Washington Post)

Although it is too early to know if this will even make it into a court room, HBO may eventually take down the clip from youtube just as a precaution. Enjoy!


Finance

Big Oil turns to big data to save big money on drilling (Reuters)

Data analytics is saving oil companies billions of dollars and they are all investing heavily in expanding this technology. The intersection of big data and big oil could be a very timely research topic.

China, India, Japan hamper Asia oil demand growth, efforts to balance market (Reuters)

At least in China, many aspects working against petroleum. There are austerity measures, a social movement encouraging people to drive less and the arrival of bike sharing programs in some of the largest cities. Electric cars are still far in the minority, but these other issues must be having an impact on the market.

Renewable energy no longer a niche to institutional investors (Reuters)


Grid

Trump Power Study Riles Trade Groups Before It’s Released (Bloomberg)

A number of groups are preparing reports in preparation for the DOE analysis of the US grid that was ordered by Rick Perry. Most likely will come out in the next week. The AEE report can be found here.

Poland’s power grid can handle possible heatwave (Reuters)

Ahead of Modi visit, US announces $7.5 million to advance India’s power grid (India Times)


Labor

Freeport Indonesia workers to extend strike for a month (Reuters)

Finnish refiner Neste faces strike over proposed government stake sale (Reuters)

It appears the possibility of a strike has been resolved.


Pipeline

As Standing Rock Camps Cleared Out, TigerSwan Expanded Surveillance to Array of Progressive Causes (Intercept)

Dakota Access-Style Policing Moves to Pennsylvania’s Mariner East 2 Pipeline (Intercept)

The Intercept is really expanding their coverage on TigerSwan and its attempt to shift its surveillance tactics beyond Standing Rock and into a variety of environmental movements.

Oil to keep flowing in Dakota line while legal battle continues (Reuters)

Michigan fires contractor doing Enbridge oil pipeline risk analysis (Reuters)

Quite a bit of pipeline news this week.


Politics

Saudi Prince’s Elevation Will Have Far-Reaching Consequences in Energy (New York Times)

This has definitely been the most talked about issue in Energy News this week.

Egypt sends fuel for Gaza’s only power plant as Hamas links thaw (Reuters)

Modi’s Smart City Mission (India Times)

Mongolians fret over China investment as they prepare to vote (Reuters)

Seattle consultant connected to Oregon DOE racketeering (KOIN)

I typically tell people that local government in the US is corruption free. Ha! Proven wrong again.


Technology

What Does Your Smart Meter Know About You? (IEEE)

I love how IEEE’s tagline for this article is “It may be more than you like”

Norway’s Statkraft to make biofuel from wood chips and other waste (Reuters)

NASA Tests Flexible Roll-Out Solar Array on Space Station (Space.com)

I hope that I will write this Update long enough so that at some point I will need an “Intrastellar Energy” section 🙂 For now, check out the Press Release from NASA as well.


Transportation

Shut Up About the Batteries: The Key to a Better Electric Car Is a Lighter Motor (IEEE)

Outstandingly detailed article on EV motor engineering, reviews the past as well as current technology. Gotta love these IEEE titles too! 🙂

The future(s) of mobility: How cities can benefit (McKinsey)

Tesla moves a step closer to building electric cars in China (Reuters)

Ford bets on low oil prices, moves Focus production to China (Reuters)

The Focus is also a very popular car in China, so there are probably operational expenses that can be reduced by shifting all of the production to China. Not to mention the fact that there are no real unions in China.


Coal

At least eleven die in Colombia coal mine explosion (Reuters)

Regulators move to pull the plug on Mississippi coal plant (AP)

Botswana issues tenders for coal-to-liquid project to secure energy supply (Reuters)


Gas

Russia’s Gazprom says resolves issue with gas supplies to Poland (Reuters)

Western earthquakes likely connected to wastewater injection (Houston Chronicle)

UK wants to revive gas extraction in oldest part of North Sea oil basin (Reuters)

Foot off the gas: Increased reliance on natural gas in the power sector risks an emissions lock-in (Climate Action Tracker)

For a copy of the full report see here.


Hydropower

Reassess dam building in the Amazon (Nature)

For those interested in the detailed article behind this critical examination of dam building in the Amazon see this link

Council Report Details Bonneville Power Fish/Wildlife Costs For 2016: $621.5 Million (Columbia Basin Bulletin)

Here is a link to the Council’s full report.


Nuclear

Rapid nuclear decommissioning threatens climate targets, says IEA (Reuters)

South Africa to review nuclear plans in response to recession (Reuters)


Petroleum

Overturned oil tanker explodes in Pakistan, killing 120 (Guardian)

News of this tragedy is still developing. The last report I saw said 148 were killed.

Norway offers record number of blocks for Arctic oil exploration (Reuters)

Seventy workers taken off Bruce platform after power loss (BBC)

Oil firms could waste trillions if climate targets reached (Reuters)

This is an interesting way to look at the conflict between oil corporations and climate change. If countries really do intend to meet their targets, then these corporations are just bleeding money for no reason.


Solar

Solar energy powers clean water, business opportunities for refugees (Reuters)

California invested heavily in solar power. Now there’s so much that other states are sometimes paid to take it (L.A. Times)

Long title and a long read!

Solar shares shine after Trump talks up ‘solar wall’ (Reuters)

It is depressing to think that any company willfully would want to collaborate on this project. At least the AP wrote a fact checking article about this.

BlueRock Solar to Build New York’s Largest Community Solar Project (EnergyTrends)


Wind

Trump’s putdown of wind energy whips up a backlash in Iowa (AP)

 


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