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ODAC Newsletter - Oct 9

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.

"A peak of conventional oil production before 2030 appears likely" and "there is a significant risk of a peak in conventional oil production before 2020." says a new report by the UK Energy Research Centre (see ODAC press release). The UKERC’s remit is to analyse contentious technical issues and deliver clear advice to policymakers. So could this finally force the government to acknowledge peak oil and start to act? A spokeswoman for the Department of Energy and Climate Change said: “Government met with UKERC in July to discuss their initial findings – we’re interested in their report and will assess their conclusions closely”. After years of obstinate denial, this at least is a tiny step forward, although excruciatingly late in the day.

In another report on peak oil this week, “The Peak Oil Market”, Deutsche Bank forecasts an oil price of $175 by 2016, which it says will spell the end of the oil age and the beginning of age of electricity, with the electric car as a “game-changing” disruptive technology. The bank anticipates reduced demand for oil will result in expensive resources, like tar sands, remaining largely undeveloped. It also makes the assumption that there will be abundant natural gas to meet rising electricity demand - a risky assumption in the long term.

The Independent ran an exclusive this week which claimed that Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Brazil, China and Russia have held secret meetings to end the dominance of the dollar in oil trading. The story has been vigorously denied by all concerned. True or not, peak oil is likely to have significant repercussions for the dollar’s status as the world’s reserve currency.

In the UK this week Eon decided to shelve plans to build a new coal fired plant at Kingsnorth. The decision to delay what was to be the first new British coal plant in 25 years was hailed as a victory for the environmental movement, but Eon also claimed economic reasons for the decision with the recession reducing electricity demand.

At the Conservative Party Conference in Manchester this week, Shadow Chancellor George Osborne laid out what he described as “honest choices” about spending cuts. Labour too has been waving its hair shirt of late. What neither party seems prepared to confront is the impact of volatile energy prices on spending plans and priorities. Economists are currently debating whether the recession will be V-shaped or W-shaped. But repeated oil price spikes could deliver a downturn more in keeping with the internet age: www.

View our Reports and Resources page

Oil

Peak oil before 2020 a 'significant risk', say experts

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Peak oil could hit soon, report says

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Peak Oil: The End Of the Oil Age is Near, Deutsche Bank Says

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The demise of the dollar

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Saudi Bank Governor Denies Talks to Replace Dollar

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U.S. EIA raises 2010 world oil demand forecast

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Oil Rises as Dollar Declines, Crude Supplies Fall Unexpectedly

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Nigerian Rebels Say They’ll Resume Attacks After Cease-fire

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Total Canada chief says oil sands need pricier oil

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Kuwait delays oil output capacity boost to 2030

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Iraq hydrocarbons law delayed until after election - MP

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Nuclear

Energy giant EDF seeks partners to build reactors

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Renewables

Greenland challenge to Chinese over rare earth metals

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'Tilting at windmills: the boy who harnessed the wind'

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Biofuels

Hunger for biofuels will gobble up wheat surplus

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UK

Green activists claim victory over coal power

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Osborne targets £7bn cuts

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National Grid plans world's longest underwater power cable between Britain and Norway

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UK losing £650m a year by binning and burning waste

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Gas storage capacity will only grow by tiny fraction, minister admits

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How much of your council tax gets wasted on waste?

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British public refuse to fly less to reduce their carbon footprint

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Climate

China leads accusation that rich nations are trying to sabotage climate treaty

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Rich countries 'must slash living standards' to fight climate change

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Transport

New age of train offers route out of recession

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Recession leads to rethink on lower-cost logistics

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