UPI Energy Resources said the Middle East has huge oil and gas potential. Global energy research company Wood Mackenzie reports this region has 367 billion barrels of undeveloped crude oil and natural gas discoveries that could be worth $185 billion. The-giant North/South Pars natural gas field which extends between Qatar and Iran in the Persian Gulf is the largest single reserve in the world. Globally, Wood Mackenzie says there may be 1.4 trillion barrels of conventional undeveloped crude oil and natural gas worth an estimated $760 billion.

The Financial Post wrote about how Israeli’s natural gas reserves are reshaping the dynamics of the Middle East.

Exxon forecasts that natural gas will pass coal as a significant energy source by 2040 reported the Dallas Business Journal. The energy company sees natural gas use rising 65% over the next 30 years, with demand coming from both the electric power and transportation sectors.  However, oil will still be the most used energy source in 2040. Overall, Exxon expects global energy demand will grow by one-third over the next three decades.

The Irish Times told us nuclear fusion is now a viable energy source. Nuclear fusion is the holy grail of energy for Earth has it offers enormous amounts of clean energy without the radioactive emissions from nuclear fission. Professor Steven Cowley, chief executive of the UK Atomic Energy Authority, believes the world’s first nuclear fusion power plant under construction in the south of France could be producing viable electricity in the 2020s. Known as ITER, the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor is expected to produce 500 megawatts of output power for 50 megawatts of input power (or ten times the amount of energy put in) by the early 1920s.

Prof Cowley believes that, if harnessed properly, nuclear fusion can provide half of all mankind’s energy needs by the middle of the century.

The European Union has set the 2040s as a target goal to commercially produce electricity based on fusion power, but Prof Cowley believes it can be done quicker than that.  “I hope that with ITER that in the 2020s we will be able to demonstrate a full-blown sustained fusion burn, with lots of energy coming out. It will ignite worldwide support and push through to deliver electricity at that point.”

arab news informed us Saudi Arabia expects to have 16 new nuclear reactors by 2030. With a combined capacity of 22 GW, these reactors will supply about half of the desert kingdom’s current electricity output. The first two reactors are expected to be ready within 10 years. Electric power demand in Saudi Arabia is estimated to grow 7% to 8% percent during the next decade. The country regards nuclear power as a way to meet rising electricity demand while reducing reliance on greenhouse gas emitting fossil fuels.

Meanwhile, the Saudi Gazette let us know the desert kingdom wants to cut its energy use by 30% over the next 17 years. The country hopes to do this by reducing energy usage in buildings, the transportation sector and industry. The manufacturing of iron, cement, and petrochemicals accounts for 80% of all electric power being used in the industry sector.

Coal Guru commented on the increasing use of coal in Europe to generate electricity. Despite the European Union’s goal to reduce CO2 emissions to 80% of their 1990 levels by 2020, the demand for coal is increasing. Market research company Frost & Sullivan pointed to a number of factors that simultaneously have lowered the price of coal for European electrical utilities. The natural gas revolution in North America has encouraged greater use of this resource for electricity on that continent and has led a drop in demand for coal.  At the same time China’s economy has slowed down adding to that drop in demand.  As a result, there is an abundance of cheap coal in North America available for export to Europe. As European utilities must pay a much higher price for natural gas from their own continent, they are keen on importing cheap North American coal to minimize their costs.

Mr Harald Thaler director of Frost & Sullivan Energy Industry said:  “High coal usage is still expected to continue for several more years, though to a lesser extent, as some ageing coal plants get decommissioned.”

From the energy collective we learned that the new Australian government is getting rid of the carbon tax.  The tax had been introduced just over a year ago by the previous government in an attempt to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in that country. The new Prime Minister, Tony Abbot, says the tax costs Australians billions of dollars a year, hinders business, and global warming is not an important issue for the country.

OILPRICE gave us 10 renewable energy statistics we might not be aware of. For example, renewable electricity generation is estimate to reach 25% of global gross power generation in 2018, up from 20% in 2011, and 19% in 2006. Hydropower currently makes up the lion’s share of global renewable generation, accounting for 16% of global gross power generation.

Shell revealed there is no “magic bullet” to solving the world’s energy challenges. As reported by Truck News, Richard Tucker, general manager, technology, commercial fuels and lubricants with Shell, believes there is no single solution that will wean the world off traditional fossil fuels.

By 2050, there will be two billion vehicles in the world – 1.2 billion more than today – doubling energy demand from 2000 levels, and most of them will still be powered by conventional liquid fuels…There will be nine billion people on the earth by then, and 75% of them will live in cities.
“There are no magic answers, no single solutions to these challenges…There is no single alternative to oil-based road transport, All fuel options will be needed. We don’t believe there is any single solution, there’s no silver bullet that’s going to solve the energy challenges we have.”



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