The International Energy Agency indicates that coal will surpass crude oil as the world’s most popular fuel source within 10 years. The boost in coal demand is due to extreme growth in emerging markets like China and India, countries that require cheap fuel sources for electricity production in order to support their quickly growing infrastructures and populations. At current rates of growth, the IEA says that it expects coal consumption will rise to 4.3 billion tonnes of oil equivalent versus 4.4 billions tonnes of oil per year worldwide within only four years; with that trend continuing, coal would quickly overtake oil as the world’s fuel source of choice. With the US focusing more on shale gas reserves, India is expected to become the second largest coal consumer next year, ranking only behind China.  China will remain the world’s largest coal consumer, accounting for more than half of global consumption, for the foreseeable future.

Two major Caspian Sea oil fields scheduled to come on stream this year will together produce at least 200,000 barrels per day according to industry sources. That means significant volumes of crude oil from these projects will be entering a world market that already has a supply glut.

Apache Corp. says it has discovered the equivalent of at least two billion barrels of shale oil in a new field in the US state of Texas that has the promise to become one of the biggest energy finds of the past decade. The discovery is in an area of the state that had been overlooked by geologists and engineers, who believed it would be a poor fit for hydraulic fracturing. It could be worth $8 billion by conservative estimates.

Douglas-Westwood forecasts global liquefied natural gas (LNG) expenditure to total US$284 billion between 2017 and 2021. This represents a 50% growth compared with the preceding five year period. Liquefaction terminals and carriers will remain the principal investment. This will subsequently lead to a 42% increase in liquefaction capacity by the end of the forecast period and over 150 additional carriers to serve export markets. Global LNG expenditure will be concentrated in North America and result in the US and Canada accounting for 17% of global liquefaction capacity by 2021.

In a new paper, a team of geologists and physicists say they will be able to determine by 2025 how much nuclear fuel and radioactive power (ie. energy) resides within the Earth. Earth taps two sources of energy to run its engine: primordial energy from assembling the planet and nuclear energy from the heat produced during natural radioactive decay. Knowing exactly how much radioactive power there is in the Earth will tell us about Earth’s consumption rate in the past and its future fuel budget. By showing how fast the planet has cooled down since its birth 4 1/2 billion years ago, we will be able to estimate how long this fuel will last.

The world’s largest wind turbines are being installed off the coast of Liverpool in the UK. Standing taller and wider than the London Eye, the 32 turbines will each be able to generate 8 megawatts of electricity.  Each turbine stands 195 meters tall from sea level and has a rotor diameter of 164 meters. Combined, the 32 turbines will create enough electricity to power around 230,000 homes. The UK is seeking new electricity generation to replace its aging coal and nuclear power stations and has said around 10 gigawatts of offshore wind capacity could be installed over the next decade.

The US Department of Energy has identified the potential for hydrogen to decarbonize a multitude of sectors in a proposal termed “H2@Scale”. Preliminary analysis performed by the national laboratories on the H2@Scale concept indicated that a 50% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions is possible by 2050 via such large-scale hydrogen production and use. The concept sees hydrogen having the potential to be a centerpiece of a future energy system where aggressive market penetration of renewables (wind and solar) are coupled with renewable hydrogen production to meet society’s energy demands across industrial, transportation, and power generation sectors. An important goal of this concept is to enable hydrogen production at $1/kg through advancements in electrolyzer technologies, use of low-cost electricity from the grid during off-peak times, and high-volume manufacturing of electrolyzers enabled by the use of hydrogen in a wide range of sectors.

Cosmo Magazine tries to answer the question: What is Energy?

The reason energy is so hard to define is because it’s an abstract notion. There is no physical “essence” of energy, and no such thing as “pure energy”. Energy is always carried by something, usually in the form of movement.

 

 

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