Italian energy company Eni estimates there is at least 40 trillion cubic feet of natural gas in place off the coast of Mozambique. Recently the company had a large discover that increases the resource base of the East African country by at least 10 trillion cubic feet.

Rich shale gas deposits have been found in Leicestershire, England.

Coal demand from the electric power sector in the US is expected to decline this year to its lowest level since 1995, the U.S. Energy Department says. The decline reflects the continued switch by the electric industry to cheap natural gas. The U.S. power sector consumers about 92% of all of the coal produced domestically.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission expects the nation’s carbon tax to be introduced on July 1st will add 10% to consumer’s electricity rates.  Two states, Queensland and New South Wales, will have a line on their power bills indicating the portion due to the carbon tax.

UK households are using 11% less energy now than in 2007 but paying 24% more for it. Figures from the Office for National statistics show UK household spending on energy consumption increased 23.5% from £28.8 billion in 2007 to £35.6 billion in 2011. In the last six years the average household energy bill has risen dramatically from £660 to £1,252 a year – a £592 or 90% increase.

Chile’s energy minister, Rodrigo Alvarez, has resigned amid violent protests over high fuel prices.  He is the second energy minister to resign from the current government for this reason. The protests in Aysen, one of the country’s most isolated regions, began in mid-February, with residents demanding increased government subsidies for fuel for both transportation and heating. The strikes and highway blockades lasted several weeks.

Austerity measures introduced by the Italian government have pushed Italian gas prices to the highest in Europe, an average of €1.82 per liter, or $9.17 per gallon, with taxes accounting for over half of the total.

The UK motoring public believes that electric cars are not the answer for a long-term solution for sustainable transport. The YouGov Sixth Sense survey has shown that 75% of UK motorists think electric cars are not the best solution for replacing petrol and diesel powered vehicles. The research also showed that two-thirds of owners said financial incentives were the main reason for buying a ‘green’ car as opposed to a conventionally powered vehicle.

More than 4.5 million hybrid electric vehicles had been sold worldwide by the end of December 2011, led by Toyota with more than 3.5 million. The United States is the largest hybrid market in the world, with 2.18 million hybrid automobiles and SUVs sold through January 2012. California leads the US in number of hybrids sold accounting for 1/4 of the total nation.

Japan is left with only one working nuclear reactor after Tokyo Electric Power Co. shuttered its final generator for scheduled safety checks. The utility’s entire stock of 17 reactors are now idle, including three units that suffered a meltdown at Fukushima. The final reactor will close May 5th. For several months over the summer Japan will be producing no electricity from nuclear sources.

Renewable energy generated 9.5% of all electricity supplied in the UK in 2011. This was an increase of 35.1% on the previous year, when renewables accounted for 6.8% of all electricity. Most was from thermal renewables, i.e. biomass, landfill gas, and waste-to-energy, which accounted for 13.27 TWh, and onshore wind which accounted for 10.42 TWh.

China is now the global leader in wind power. According to figures released last week by the China Wind Energy Association now has installed wind power electrical generation of 62.4 GW, up 39.4% from 2010.

A new assessment has found that the potential for on-shore wind energy deployment in India is far higher than the official estimates— about 20 to 30 times greater than the current government estimate of 102 GW.

Sydney has become the first city in Australia to roll-out new energy-efficient LED street and park lights. The Mayor said that replacing 6,450 conventional lights with LEDs will save $800,000 a year in electricity bills and maintenance costs. Sydney joins other major cities such as Berlin, Barcelona, Los Angeles and San Francisco who have already done this.



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