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ODAC Newsletter - Nov 19

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 Gulf of Mexico oil disaster has increased the risk of an imminent global oil crunch — so says the UK Industry Taskforce on Peak Oil and Energy Insecurity (ITPOES). The group, whose members include Virgin and Stagecoach among others, called on the government to speed up adoption of renewables and energy efficiency measures, and to engage with them on a contingency plan to address the risks of peak oil. Meanwhile a study from the University of California at Davis has found that at present investment rates supply could fall 90 per cent short of demand before oil is replaced with other fuels.

But there was also good news as the National Grid issued announced Britain is on target to meet its 2020 renewables target. Agreements have now been secured to generate 32GWs of power, 3GW more than necessary. However, the National Grid warned that reform of planning and energy markets will be required to ensure that all of the additional capacity becomes a reality.

The detail of the government's nuclear policy remains unclear, but an article in The Telegraph this week claims that assurances of 'no subsidies' are likely to be rather semantic. Lib Dem Energy Secretary Chris Huhne, who now supports nuclear despite his party's opposition, insists new stations will not be subsidised. But it has been clear for some time that the definition of 'subsidy' may well be interpreted in its narrowest sense as industry negotiates other forms of support to underwrite the risk.

Risk to the Euro appears to have been deferred again this week as Ireland moves towards accepting a bail out. The markets rallied in anticipation of the news, but the worry is that Spain and Portugal will now be tested. The financial crisis looks far from over, and while a slow economy dampens fuel consumption, it is also likely to slow the urgently-needed move away from fossil fuels.

Oil

Business warns of 'oil crunch'

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Protect us from peak oil, says Richard Branson (and others)

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Oil will run out 100 years before new fuels developed: study

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Oil Rises, Paring Weekly Loss, as Sovereign-Debt Concern Eases

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Who's right on oil demand, OPEC or the IEA?

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BP failed to learn from past 'near misses': oil spill panel

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Greenland wants $2bn bond from oil firms keen to drill in its Arctic waters

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Oil Exploration, Production Spending May Climb 5%, Wood Mackenzie Says

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Gas

Gazprom expansion fuels hiring spree

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China's Natural Gas Supply May Fail to Meet Demand Next Year, Caijing Says

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Pittsburgh council bans natural gas drilling

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Coal

'CCS Is One of the Few Options to Minimize CO2 Emissions'

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Biofuels

Climate change and disease will spark new food crisis, says UN

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Will the decline of newsprint boost biomass energy?

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US ethanol exports fuel European unease

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UK

National Grid declares readiness for 2020 renewables goal

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Confusion as ministers meddle with £1bn green tax on business

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Government blinks first in UK's nuclear stand-off

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British Gas to raise gas and electricity bills by 7%

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Economy

Britain slumps another £10bn into the red

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Ireland fights to retain economic sovereignty

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China inflation surges to 25-month high

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Transport

Aviation industry 'ditches' hydrogen

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