A survey by Royal Dutch Shell finds that people in Pakistan, Thailand, the Philippines and India top a list of nine Asian countries that say they are very concerned about their future energy needs. 90% of those in Pakistan and Thailand expect future energy shortages while Indians are fearful of much higher energy prices.

The long-awaited US government report on the environmental impact that the Keystone XL crude oil  pipeline would have on the global climate was released last week. The report echoed an early draft which said that the pipeline would have little impact on the pace at which the Alberta Tar Sands would be developed as Canada would simply find other outlets for its oil either by rail or new pipelines to the west coast. The report is widely considered a serious blow to environmentalists’ hopes that the Obama administration would block the pipeline. The pipeline is designed to carry Canadian heavy oil from the province of Alberta through the middle of the US to the Gulf of Mexico.

New government projections show that China hopes to increase energy efficiency in the coming year so that total energy consumption will only increase by 3.2%. Coal consumption is to increase by 1.6% in 2014 to 3.8 billion tons while oil demand will increase by 1.8%t. In contrast, natural gas consumption is projected to increase by 14.5% this year.

China’s first direct coal-to-oil project produced 866,000 tons of oil products last year. It produces 3,000 tons of oil products (approx. 17,000 b/d) with thorough consuming nearly 10,000 tons of coal per day. The project has a designed annual capacity of 1.08 million tons of diesel, naphtha and liquefied petroleum gas.

A report from India’s ministry of petroleum and natural gas says the country’s transportation sector consumes 70% of all diesel supplies and 99.6% of all petrol (gasoline) supplies. The highest consumption of diesel is by cars, utility vehicles and three-wheelers.  Petrol is consumed primarily by
two-wheelers, cars, and three-wheelers.

Venezuelan crude oil and petroleum product sales to the U.S.— 792,000 barrels/day —are heading for the lowest levels in 28 years as President Nicolas Maduro increases shipments to his main lender China and the shale oil boom floods North American refineries.

Japan reported a trade deficit of $112 billion in 2013, up 65% from the previous year. The main cause for the jump was the soaring fuel imports in the aftermath of the country’s 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster, particularly liquified natural gas (LNG) to generate electricity.

US domestic crude oil now supplies about 53% of US oil demand, compared with 34% less than three years ago.  The US state of Texas will soon start supplying oil to California via tanker shipments through the Panama Canal as the mounting glut of crude on the US Gulf Coast makes the trade profitable.

Giant energy company, Royal Dutch Shell, intends to spend at least $10 billion on a 1,600-foot-long floating gas liquefaction ship now being built in South Korea. The boat will drop anchor in a natural-gas field, chill the gas into liquid and pump it into LNG tankers. The company says the giant project will help Shell develop gas fields in seas and oceans that are too small or far-flung to justify the expensive pipelines and onshore processing plants needed for offshore gas fields

Russian state-owned energy giant Gazprom supplied more than half of Turkey’s natural gas imports last year, providing 26.6 billion of 45 billion cubic meters of imported gas. Energy-hungry Turkey, which produced 47 billion cubic meters of natural gas on its own in 2013, relies on contracts with gas suppliers such as Iran, Russia, Azerbaijan, Algeria and Nigeria to feed its soaring need.

The largest electric utility in the Australian state of Queensland is switching from natural gas to coal to generate electricity. Stanwell finds it is more profitable to sell its natural gas on the open market and substitute to cheaper coal.  Several observers believe that this could become a trend among electric utilities in Australia.  Currently, similar actions are occurring among European electric utilities. Stanwell has announced it will mothball its biggest gas-fired power station and resurrect a coal facility built in the 1980s, sparking predictions that gas-fired power plants would be withdrawn in other Australian states.

The South Korean government has granted final approval to build two nuclear reactors at the Shin Kori Nuclear Power Plant in Ulsan, about 255 miles southeast of Seoul. Construction on the $7 billion project is scheduled to start September with completion expected by December 2020.

The Polish government has adopted a program for the construction of the country’s first two nuclear power plants. The first would be in operation by 2024 and the second by 2030.

A group of state-owned companies in India have signed an initial agreement for setting up what the government says is the world’s largest solar power plant for the production of electricity. The 4 gigawatt plant would be located in the northwestern state of Rajasthan.

China’s domestic solar market is now a major force having installed 12 gigawatts of solar facilities in 2013.

500,000 homes have now installed small-scale rooftop solar panels in the UK. About 1,900 new installations are carried out every week according to the country’s Solar Trade Association.

Solar power accounted for 0.2% of the US. electricity supply in 2013, according to the US government’s Energy Information Administration. This compares with 0.1% a year earlier. Coal is still the largest generator or electricity in the US, meeting 37.4 % of demand in 2013.

Solar power, which President Barack Obama promoted in his State of the Union Address, accounted for 0.2 percent of the U.S. electricity supply in the first nine months of 2013, according to data published by the U.S. government’s Energy Information Administration. – See more at: http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/terence-p-jeffrey/solar-provides-02-electric-supply-002-obama#sthash.m8F0JS9d.dpuf
Solar power, which President Barack Obama promoted in his State of the Union Address, accounted for 0.2 percent of the U.S. electricity supply in the first nine months of 2013, according to data published by the U.S. government’s Energy Information Administration. – See more at: http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/terence-p-jeffrey/solar-provides-02-electric-supply-002-obama#sthash.m8F0JS9d.dpuf

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang said his government should take the lead in using alternative-energy cars. China plans to have 5 million such vehicles in operation by 2020 in an effort to curb the serious air pollution problem.  China’s total auto sales hit 20 million last year, up 14% over 2012. China still has only 100 cars per 1000 people on the road as compared to 800 for the US.

 

 

 

 

 

 

with h/t Tom Whipple

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,