Welcome to the ODAC Newsletter, a weekly roundup from the Oil Depletion Analysis Centre, the UK registered charity dedicated to raising awareness of peak oil.
Oil prices jumped 9% this week to a 5 week high responding to news that China is to boost spending on commodity imports, and that US stockpiles last week were lower than anticipated. Even so, amid otherwise relentlessly bad economic news, and with a 4% drop during Thursday trading, OPEC will have to decide whether to make further production cuts when it meets later this month.
The possibility of a renewed European gas crisis arose on Wednesday as armed officials raided the headquarters of Ukrainian state gas company Naftogaz. Vladmir Putin warned that if Ukraine failed to make a payment due on Saturday, Russia would turn off the taps once again. Hours after this announcement Gazprom confirmed that the necessary payment had been received.
In the UK this week a government backed report has laid out plans to upgrade the electricity grid to accommodate up to 30% renewables by 2020. The £4.7bn plan is based on building infrastructure in anticipation of new power generation sources. Upgrading the grid is of course essential to create a more sustainable power supply but not sufficient. With renewable developers hit by low energy prices and share valuations and beset by planning difficulties, the government will have to do far more than providing the wires to achieve the necessary renewables penetration.
Crude oil futures climb 9%
Oil price up over petrol demand
OPEC May Forgo Cut as Dollar Boosts Oil’s Value
BP cut oil and gas production targets
North Sea oil and gas ‘may face predators’
MPC joint venture signals ‘Iraq is open for business’
Ukraine in new gas showdown with Russia
Naftogaz pays Gazprom to avert Russian gas cut-off
Gazprom Sees Drop In Demand, Output
US natural gas
Government backs blueprint to revamp electricity grid
Carbon capture won’t work until 2030, says energy boss
Drax reports less demand for power
Decision on new coal-fired plant delayed again
EU slaps tariffs on US biodiesel
Bank of England cuts interest rates and announces plans to print money
China targets 8% growth despite crisis
Miliband ‘not in control of 80% of domestic energy-saving target’
Britain fails to deliver on pledge to lead world to ‘green recovery’
Cuts warning as public debt grows
More calls for car scrap scheme
‘Fuel poverty’ hits extra 1.7m people, despite gas price cuts