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.
The oil price ran out of steam this week as economic green shoots are proving slow to show, US gasoline stocks grew more than anticipated, and a second US stimulus package is now being talked about. The price on Thursday hovered around $60/barrel.
The volatility of the oil price is according to Gordon Brown and Nicolas Sarkozy, one of the key threats to global economic recovery. In a piece in the WSJ published to coincide with the G8 meeting in Italy, they stated that “The surge in prices last year gravely damaged the global economy and contributed to the downturn. The risk now is that a new period of instability could undermine confidence just as we are pushing for recovery.” Their proposed tactics to deal with the issue include closer regulation of commodities trading as well as greater cooperation between producers and consumers. A failure to address the fact that oil is a limited resource which is reaching a peak of supply will mean that ultimately Messrs Brown and Sarkozy are looking in the wrong place for a solution to their economic problems.
The decline of the UK Oil and Gas Industry was the subject of another report this week, this time from the industry body Oil & Gas UK. The report warned that activity in exploration this year has fallen by 57%, a fact that threatens to result in a steeper decline for the industry than the 4-6%/year forecast. Even before the global recession UK oil and gas was losing investment as costs increase and the size of new finds decreases. The economic impact to the UK of this decline will be very significant. Given that the industry offset the UK balance of payments to the tune of £40 billion in the last year, the economic challenges ahead continue to pile up.
‘Rogue broker’ blamed for oil spike
We Must Address Oil-Market Volatility
U.S. Considers Curbs on Speculative Trading of Oil
Crude Oil Is Set for Biggest Weekly Decline Since January
UK facing ‘energy crunch’ as North Sea oil and gas cash dries up
EIA raises 2009 world oil demand forecast
Demand for oil in the OECD will not recover until 2013, says Opec
Nigerian Rebels Sabotage Shell, Agip Oil Pipelines
Firms challenge Iraqi oil auction
Russian 2009 Oil Output May Fall 0.9%, Bernstein Says
France imports UK electricity as plants shut
Wind power study allays risk fears
Study pinpoints UK wind hotspots
Make state-run banks invest in renewable energy, urges ex-BP chief Lord Browne
The world must learn to live and farm sustainably
G8 summit: Barack Obama says world can close the carbon emissions gap
Nature, the biggest bank of all, could go bust, warns Prince Charles
We’re not out of the woods – G8 leaders fear double dip slump
Hints of second US stimulus plan
China car sales continue to soar
Economists quash hopes of end to UK recession