Monday, June 16, 2014

From Benny Peiser's Global Warming Policy Foundation

Global Coal Boom Biggest Since 1970 As Usual,
UN Climate Talks Ends In Deadlock
Coal dominated world energy markets last year, supplying the biggest share of demand since 1970, according to an annual review by BP Plc. Consumption grew three percent last year, driven by coal use in developing nations, according to a statement today from Europe’s third-largest oil company. Use of renewables such as solar and wind also reached a record, accounting for 2.7 percent of all energy demand. The findings are another indication that consumers are prioritizing cheap fuels over efforts to rein in greenhouse gas emissions blamed for global warming. --Nidaa Bakhsh, Bloomberg, 16 June 2014

The use of carbon markets to curb rising greenhouse gas emissions was dealt a blow on Sunday after two weeks of United Nations talks on designing and reforming the mechanisms ended in deadlock. The negotiations, held as part of U.N. climate negotiations in Bonn, Germany, made scant progress as envoys representing almost 200 nations tied reforms to progress under the wider discussions and remained entrenched in diverse positions. In a separate strand of the talks, governments failed to make much progress on efforts to launch a platform to help set common standards and accounting rules for reducing emissions and tie together national and regional emissions trading schemes. --Ben Garside, Reuters, 15 June 2014

Since the 2003 Iraq invasion, new technology has opened up deep-water offshore oil and gasfields, and tapped oil and gas contained in tight shale formations on shore. The technology is being rolled out globally, and has already transformed production in the US. The US oil and gas production boom is transforming the politics of oil in the world’s most powerful country. For the US Middle Eastern oil supplies have less strategic importance than they did a decade ago, and they will become less important in years to come as shale and other unconventional oil sources are developed around the world. --Malcolm Maiden, The Age, 14 June 2014

All set to take action against Greenpeace India, the ministry of home affairs served a show cause notice to the international NGO on Friday asking why its permission to get foreign funding under the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act, 2010 (FCRA) should not be withdrawn. At least ten more NGO’s could receive similar notices within a week. Greenpeace, a NGO working on environment issues, has been in the centre of controversy with a Intelligence Bureau (IB) report indicting it for fuelling anti-nuclear agitations and adversely effecting Indian economy. A senior MHA official told ET the evidence against Greenpeace was foolproof and it would be difficult for the organisation to defend itself. --Aman Sharma & Bhavna Aurora, Economic Times of India, 14 June 2014

Coal will fuel human progress for many decades to come, Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott has told business leaders at the Asia Society Texas Centre in Houston, adding that that had contributed to the Government’s decision to scrap the carbon tax. Mr Abbott says the Government will take action on climate change without ostracising any particular energy resource. --James Glenday, ABC News, 14 June 2014

Australia’s chief trade-deals negotiator has labeled the bid by President Barack Obama to cut U.S. power-plant emissions as lacking substance. “There’s no action associated with it,” Trade Minister Andrew Robb said in a Sky News interview from Houston, Texas, where he was accompanying Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott. Abbott, who is seeking to dismantle Australia’s carbon-price mechanism before it hosts Group of 20 leaders in November, isn’t supporting Obama’s bid to pressure India, China and other nations to help form a world-wide agreement to combat climate change. --Jason Scott, Bloomberg, 15 June 2014

Among all of the chaos in the Middle East, one thing is certain: the case for allowing fracking in the UK and elsewhere has become even stronger. It may be the only way the IEA’s forecasts can possibly be met. Oil remains the world’s essential raw material; relying on Opec for our supplies is almost as short-sighted today as it was in the 1970s. --Allister Heath, City A.M., 16 June 2014

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