Archive for the tag “Iraq”

News update

(Editors note: Rumours of another global economic meltdown has been doing the rounds of online forums for at least couple of years now, but of late there seems to be a spike in the commentary warning about such a possibility. Commentators offer different reasons for why this might happen, but whats pertinent is that most of it is coming from insiders in government, business and finance. Here are links to a selection of such articles.)

World economy ‘more fragile than before great crash of 2007
From Financialpost.com
The world economy is just as vulnerable now to a financial crisis as it was in 2007 – with the added danger that debt ratios are now far higher and emerging markets have been drawn into the fire as well, the Bank for International Settlements has warned. Jaime Caruana, head of the Switzerland-based financial watchdog, said the international system was, in many ways, more fragile than it was in the build-up to the Lehman crisis. Debt ratios in the developed economies have risen by 20 percentage points to 275% of GDP since then.

Economic meltdown scenario piles pressure on Russia and the west
By Larry Elliot, Economics Editor, The Guardian
Oil prices above $200 a barrel. Energy shortages in western Europe. The return of recession to the still-fragile global economy. A slump in Russia. Thats the fear haunting policymakers as they contemplate how to respond to the shooting down of MH17 over eastern Ukraine last week. Policymakers dread slump in Russia – from further sanctions by the west – would trigger another global economic meltdown.

Preparing for Economic Collapse: A Bear Awaits
By Joseph Cafariello, Wealthdaily.com
With the U.S. stock market well into its sixth consecutive year of gains since bottoming in March of 2009, the chance of another collapse increases with each passing day. So do the number of doomsday predictions.

RBI’s Rajan Sees Risk of Financial Markets Crash
From Wall Street Journal blogs
Reserve Bank of India Governor Raghuram Rajan warned Wednesday that the global economy bears an increasing resemblance to its condition in the 1930s, with advanced economies trying to pull out of the Great Recession at each other’s expense. The difference: competitive monetary policy easing has now taken the place of competitive currency devaluations as the favored tool for playing a zero-sum game that is bound to end in disaster.

Eurozone woes deepen as Spains industry slumps
From The Guardian
Hopes for a recovery in the eurozone suffered another blow on Wednesday with figures showing industrial output fell for a second successive month. Production declined across the 18 eurozone members by an average 0.3%. Spain was the worst hit of the currency blocs major economies with a 0.8% drop in industrial production. It also suffered the sharpest drop in shop prices for five years,

OTHER LINKS

Three ways that oil matters for the crisis in Iraq
By Brad Plumer, Vox.com
For months now, Sunni militants from the Islamic State (better known as ISIS) have been seizing control of large swathes of Iraq. But it wasnt until they encroached into semi-autonomous Kurdish territory and near the Kurdish capital of Erbil — an oil boomtown full of Western companies like Chevron and ExxonMobil — that the Obama administration decided to authorize airstrikes against ISIS.

World Oil Production at 3/31/2014–Where are We Headed?
By Gail Tverberg, Ourfiniteworld.com
The standard way to make forecasts of almost anything is to look at recent trends and assume that this trend will continue, at least for the next several years. With world oil production, the trend in oil production looks fairly benign, with the trend slightly upward. But if we look at the situation more closely, however, we see that we are dealing with an unstable situation.

Raahgiri: Promoting A Public Culture of Sustainability
By Madhuri Mittal, Countercurrents.org
Raahgiri day, as it is known, is not just a concept to promote car-free and pollution-free streets but also a step to create a new public culture. Raahgiri has successfully completely 4 weeks now in Delhi. It happens in the early part of every Sunday at Connaught Place, the heart of the capital Delhi. As stated, the decision to choose Connaught Place also rests on the idea to promote public transport and pollution-free life.

News update

Amid Global Turmoil, Oil Prices Surprisingly Stable
From Forbes Magazine
The world has entered a zone of maximum upheaval. From the Atlas Mountains of North Africa to the Hindu Kush, in Afghanistan, the Middle East is in flames. The destruction of a Malaysian airline over Ukraine, almost certainly shot down by Russian-backed separatist rebels, threatens war in the Black Sea region. At no time since the terror attacks of 2001 has the world seen such conflict and instability. So why aren’t oil prices higher?

ISIS creates an oil shock, but why? 
By Tobias Vanderbruck, Oil-price.net
Followers of international politics were mostly taken by surprise early this month, when a hitherto unreported rebellion in Iraq suddenly threatened to shake the worlds oil markets. Throughout the year, the newspapers of the Western world were focused on Syria, then the Ukraine. No one seemed to have their eye on Iraq. Where did these Iraqi rebels, called ISIS, come from? The truth is, they are the latest tool in the foreign policy of a hidden puppet master Saudi Arabia.

Rigged: Who is undermining India’s national oil company?
From The Caravan
An extensively researched report on the ailing ONGC and how the Central government and private players have colluded to bring it to this state.

While the sun shines
From Government of India Monitor
Solar power has emerged as the best off-grid energy option but why is it still all talk and no substance?

Who will sow those seeds? (Video)
From Government of India Monitor
Over 15 million farmers left agriculture between 1991-2011 due to rising input costs and little profit. Food and trade policy analyst Devinder Sharma talks about the current model of development which is pushing farmers to low-paying daily wage jobs in cities.

Environmental impact appraisal Study of NTTPS
From The Hindu
Questions are raised on the Energy department’s plans for expanding Dr. Narla Tatarao Thermal Power Station (NTTPS) notwithstanding the environmental clearances secured for the project. An environmental impact assessment study led by Sagar Dhara of Hyderabad-based Cerana Foundation (and founder member of Peak oil India) recommended scrapping of the plans considering “the injury to the environment and people” by the existing power station.

Why Does Politics Keep Getting in the Way of Pricing Carbon?
From www.theenergycollective.com
While a carbon price is every economists favorite climate plan, real-world political constraints get in the way (just ask Australia!)
In a new paper in Energy Policy, I examine a variety of political economy constraints that limit the environmental efficacy and economic efficiency of real-world carbon pricing policies.

Water Resources Fact Sheet
From Earth Policy Institute
Water scarcity may be the most underrated resource issue the world is facing today.

News update

The Peak Oil Crisis: Iraq on the Precipice
From Oilprice.com
ISIS now has control of one of three major refineries in Iraq which supplies the motor fuel and oil for power stations for the northern part of Iraq. Let’s assume, however, that before this year or next is out, Iraqi oil exports drop substantially as it has in several other oil-exporting states undergoing similar political trauma. Just what does this mean for the world’s oil supply? (Also see: It’s the Oil, Stupid! Insurgency and War on a Sea of Oil (Tomdispatch.com)

Oil Production Numbers Keep Going Down
By Dave Summers, Oilprice.com
One problem with defining a peak in global oil production is that it is only really evident sometime after the event, when one can look in the rear view mirror and see the transition from a growing oil supply to one that is now declining. Before that relatively absolute point, there will likely come a time when global supply can no longer match the global demand for oil that exists at that price. We are beginning to approach the latter of these two conditions,

Oil-Rich Iran Planning To Spend $60 Million On Solar PV This Year
From Cleantechnica.com
Leading oil producer Iran is aiming big with renewable energy, based on recent statements made by the Iranian Energy Minister, Hamid Chitchian. The country’s new goal is to add 5,000 MW of new solar energy and wind energy capacity by the year 2018. That’s a big increase over the country’s previous aims, and sort of makes you wonder what it is that they know about the near-term future of the oil industry.

Is North Dakota Oil Production Rapidly Approaching a Peak?
From The Motley Fool
North Dakotas Bakken is one of the most phenomenal shale oil growth stories in the U.S. But some commentators suggest that this rapid production growth cant go on for much longer, citing sharp decline rates for Bakken wells. Could this mean that Bakken production is rapidly approaching a peak?

Carbon offset scheme complicit in genocidal land grabs
By Nafeez Ahmed, The Guardian
Between 2000 and 2010, a total of 500 million acres of land in Asia, Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean was acquired or negotiated under deals brokered on behalf of foreign governments or transnational corporations. Many such deals are geared toward growing crops or biofuels for export to richer, developed countries – with the consequence that small-holder farmers are displaced from their land and lose their livelihood while local communities go hungry. Less known factors, however, include conservation and carbon offsetting.

Govt readies Rs 14,000 cr subsidy for hybrid, electric cars
From The Times of India
Buying a hybrid or an electric car may soon fetch you a subsidy from the government, which is readying a Rs 14,000-crore scheme to push green vehicles. The subsidy will be a proportion of the difference between the price of a car running on fossil fuel and that of a green vehicle, said sources involved with the discussions. (Also see: a debate on the issue in The Times of India)

Govt panel proposes green cess on petrol, vehicles
From The Times of India
Vehicle owners could soon be asked to pay more for environment. A green surcharge of Rs 2 on petrol sold across the country and green cess on existing personal vehicles at the rate of 4% of annual insured value are some of the recommendations of a government panel. The panel has suggested levy of 7.5% urban transport tax on purchase of new petrol cars and 20% in case of diesel cars.

Solar power stocks see multi-fold jump on hopes from Modi govt
From The Economic Times
Companies with exposure to the solar power segment have seen a bull-run since the beginning of this year, with stock prices jumping three-and-half times. They have gained on expectation that the Modi government would implement the successful Gujarat solar-power model elsewhere, too.

Elon Musk Releases Electric Car Technology Patents
From Los Angeles Magazine
South African-born entrepreneur Elon Musk, the man behind the Tesla electric car, announced last week that Tesla’s automotive patents would be made available, open source-style, “for the advancement of electric vehicle technology.” The move shocked the automotive cognoscenti because patents are generally considered sacrosanct evidence of differentiating technological advances.

News update

Iraq crisis: India braces for Rs 20,000 cr hole in budget as oil could rise to $120 per barrel
From Firtsbiz.com
Indias government sees oil prices going as high as $120 per barrel for three to four months because of fighting in Iraq, potentially driving a hole of at least Rs 20,000 crore ($3.4 billion) in the budget, two government sources told Reuters. If the oil prices remain high even for 3-4 months around $120 a barrel, it could have a significant impact on the fiscal deficit and economic growth, a senior Finance Ministry official told Reuters on condition of anonymity.

International Energy Agency Says the Party’s Over
By Richard Heinberg, Postcarbon.org
The International Energy Agency has just released a new special report called “World Energy Investment Outlook” that should send policy makers screaming and running for the exits—if they are willing to read between the lines and view the report in the context of current financial and geopolitical trends. (Editors Note: Other reports, especially in the mainstream business press, have claimed the same IEA report as hailing a new era of oil abundance (see link below for an example). Such extremely contradictory views are typical when it comes to the future of oil, and reflect the high stakes involved).

IEA sees shale oil boom spread beyond N.America
By G. Chandrashekhar, The Hindu BusinessLine
Over the next five years, global oil demand growth will slow, OPEC capacity growth will face headwinds and regional imbalances in gasoline and diesel markets will widen, the International Energy Agency (IEA) has said in its annual five-year oil market outlook report released today in Paris. Forecasting that the unconventional supply revolution in the form of shale oil boom currently sweeping North America will expand to other region before the end of the decade, IEA said that in five years, North America will have the capacity to become a net exporter of oil liquids.

A Closer Look at Saudi Arabia
By Ron Patterson, Peakoilbarrel.com
Approximately 60–65% of all Saudi oil produced between 1948 and 2000 came from the Ghawar oil field. Cumulative production until April 2010 has exceeded 65 billion barrels. It was estimated that Ghawar produced about 5 million barrels of oil a day (6.25% of global production) in 2009. Ghawar also produces approximately 2 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day. After 60 years of production, the field is depleted, and so are other leading Saudi oil fields.

The inevitable demise of the fossil fuel empire
By Nafeez Ahmed, the Guardian
Since 2000, the oil industrys investments have risen by 180% a threefold increase but this has translated into a global oil supply increase of just 14%. Two-thirds of this increase has been made-up by unconventional oil and gas. In other words, the primary driver of the cost explosion is the shift to expensive and difficult-to-extract unconventionals due to the peak and plateau in conventional oil production since 2005.

Pentagon preparing for mass civil breakdown
By Nafeez Ahmed, the Guardian
A US Department of Defense (DoD) research programme is funding universities to model the dynamics, risks and tipping points for large-scale civil unrest across the world, under the supervision of various US military agencies. Launched in 2008 – the year of the global banking crisis – the DoD Minerva Research Initiative is a multi-million dollar programme designed to develop immediate and long-term warfighter-relevant insights for senior officials and decision makers in the defense policy community, and to inform policy implemented by combatant commands.

China Leads World to Solar Power Record in 2013
By J. Matthew Roney,  Earth Policy Institute
China—the leading manufacturer of PV—had until recently installed very little solar power at home. Those days are over. Between 2010 and 2012, China’s PV capacity grew nearly ninefold to 7,000 megawatts. Then in 2013, China added at least 11,300 megawatts, the largest PV addition by any country in a single year. With 18,300 megawatts, China now trails only Germany (at 36,000 megawatts) in overall capacity.

Want to Change the World? Read This First
by Richard Heinberg, Resilience.org
History is often made by strong personalities wielding bold new political, economic, or religious doctrines. Yet any serious effort to understand how and why societies change requires examination not just of leaders and ideas, but also of environmental circumstances (climate, weather, and the presence or absence of water, good soil, and other resources). If you want to change society—or are interested in aiding or evaluating the efforts of others to do so—some understanding of exactly how environmental circumstances affect such efforts could be extremely helpful.

Post Navigation