Tag Archives: Renewable energy

Biden’s Baffling Oil Policy Faces Backlash From All Sides, by Irina Slav

Why should Biden’s energy policies be any less baffling than any of his other policies? From Irina Slave at oilprice.com:

  • President Biden is in a tight spot when it comes to energy
  • The White House continues to face critique from both environmentalists and the oil and gas industry
  • If energy demand continues to grow at the current pace, switching from pragmatism to an all-out renewables agenda will be a huge challenge

President Joe Biden and his administration hardly planned for everything that happened this year. In fairness, no administration could have planned for it: soaring oil and gas demand, tight supply, rising prices fueling inflation that has quickly gone from nothing to worry about to the biggest worry for many.

Yet that’s not the worst of it for the Biden administration. The president came into office with the pledge to set the United States on a course towards a lower-carbon energy future. This would have been a challenging task even under the best of circumstances, the U.S. being one of the biggest polluters in the world. With the energy crunch, the task becomes almost impossible.

It is no wonder, then, that when Biden started calling on OPEC to boost crude oil production, nervous about rising gas prices at American filling stations, he instantly attracted accusations of hypocrisy. After all, he was pushing an energy transition agenda, he was clearly not in favor of boosting domestic oil production, and one of the first executive orders he signed was the one that killed the Keystone XL pipeline.

The White House’s climate envoy, John Kerry, got asked about Biden’s energy policy at the COP26 summit in Glasgow last week. How could the president urge OPEC to pump more oil while campaigning for the phase-out of fossil fuels, the media asked Kerry.

“He’s asking them to boost production in the immediate moment,” Kerry said in response, as quoted by the Wall Street Journal. “And as the transition cuts in, there won’t be that need as you deploy the solar panels, as you deploy the transmission lines, as you build out the grid.”

Kerry’s statement is in line with Biden’s own defense of his latest moves in the energy area.

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David Stockman on the GreenMageddon… Part 5

The final article of David Stockman’s series thoroughly debunking green mythology. From Stockman at internationalman.com:

Editor’s Note: Right now, the global elite and world leaders are coming together at the UN Climate Change Conference in Glasgow to address the “problem” of climate change.

Washington, DC, insider David Stockman debunks the narrative and offers a comprehensive look at the climate change agenda, including what it means for you.

Below is the final part of David’s article series.


GreenMageddon is no hyperbole. It’s is the virtually certain outcome of attempting to purge CO2 emissions from a modern energy system and economy that literally breathes and exhales fossilized carbon.

Indeed, the very idea of converting today’s economy to an alternative energy respiratory system is so far beyond rational possibility as to defy common sense. Yet that is exactly where the COP26 powers that be and their megaphones in the MSM are leading us.

In the first place, it needs be understood that the climate change advocates essentially lie about how much “green energy” we now use and therefore the scope for energy supply system displacement of fossil fuels which would be required to get to net zero CO2 emissions by 2050.

For instance, it is commonly claimed that 12% of US primary energy consumption (2020) is accounted for by “renewables”, implying that we are off to a decent start in eliminating the fossil fuel dependency of the system.

Actually, no—not even close. That’s because “renewables” and green energy defined as solar and wind are not remotely the same thing.

According to DOE, the US consumed 11.6 quads (quadrillion BTUs) of renewables in 2020, but 7.3 quads or 63% of that was accounted for by old-style non-fossil fuels including:

  • Hydroelectric: 2.6 quads;
  • Wood: 2.5 quads;
  • Biofuels: 2.0 quads;
  • Geothermal: 0.2 quads

Of course, there is nothing wrong with these non-fossil fuels and in some cases they can be quite efficient. But they are not part of the “green solution” to displace some or all of the 73 quads of fossil fuels consumed in 2020 because most of these sources are tapped out or not desirable to expand.

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David Stockman on the GreenMageddon… Part 4

Part 4 of David Stockman’s debunking of green mythology. There’s a lot of mythology to debunk. The fifth and final installment comes to tomorrow. From Stockman at internationalman.com:

GreenMageddon
 

Editor’s Note: Right now, the global elite and world leaders are coming together at the UN Climate Change conference in Glasgow to address the “problem” of climate change.

Over the next couple of days, Washington DC insider David Stockman will debunk the narrative and offer a comprehensive look at the climate change agenda, including what it means for you.

Below is part four of David’s article series.


The chart below dramatically underscores why the CO2 witch-hunt is such a deadly threat to future prosperity and human welfare. To wit, even after decades of green energy promotion and huge subsidies from the state, renewables accounted for only 5% of primary global energy consumption in 2019 because:

  • They are still very un-competitve (high cost) relative to the installed base of fossil, nuclear and hydroelectric energy; and,
  • They do not really even account for the 5% share reflected in the chart in terms of ability to delivery work to the economy owing to intermittency of wind and solar power and the fact that by convention government scorekeepers gross-up renewables-based electrical power delivered to end-users to account for transmission and distribution (T&D) losses in the electric power grid.

By contrast, the 84% share attributed to oil, natural gas and coal is actually far larger in practical terms as we look into the future. That’s because most of the prime hydro sources have been tapped out long ago and are therefore not a meaningful source of growth. During the last 10 years, for example, US hydro-power output has only increased from 275 billion KWh to 288 billion KWh or by barely 0.24% per annum.

Likewise, nuclear power capacity outside of China stopped growing decades ago due to massive political and regulatory resistance. Germany, for example, is in the process of closing its last nuclear plants from a fleet that once generated 170,000 GW hours annually (2000) and is now generating only 75,000 GW hours, with a zero target by the year 2030. Even in the US, nuclear power remains dead in the water, with annual output rising from 754 billion KWh in 2000 to just 809 billion KWh in 2019.

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David Stockman on the GreenMageddon… Part 2

Part 2 of David Stockman’s debunking of green mythology. From Stockman at internationalman.com:

GreenMageddon

Editor’s Note: Right now, the global elite and world leaders are coming together at the UN Climate Change conference in Glasgow to address the “problem” of climate change.

Over the next couple days, Washington DC insider David Stockman will debunk the narrative and offer a comprehensive look at the climate change agenda including what it means for you.

Below is part two David’s article series…


The assembled governments of the world meeting in Glasgow for COP26 are fixing to declare war on the backbone of modern economic life and the abundance and relief from human poverty and suffering with which it has gifted the world. We are referring, of course, to its agenda to essentially drive fossil fuels—which currently make up 80% of BTU consumption—from the global energy supply system over the next several decades.

All of this is being done in the name of preventing global temperatures from rising by 1.5 degrees Celsius above “pre-industrial” levels.

But when it comes to the crucial matter of exactly which pre-industrial baseline level, you can see the skunk sitting on the woodpile a mile away. That’s because, as we showed in Part 1, global temperatures have been higher than the present—often by upward of 10–15 degrees Celsius—for most of the past 600 million years!

Moreover, during the more recent era since the great extinction event 66 million years ago, the decline in temperatures has been almost continuous, touching lower than current levels only during the 100,000-year glaciation cycles of the last 2.6 million years of the Pleistocene ice ages. Not unsurprisingly, therefore, the Climate Howlers have chosen to ignore 599,830,000 of those years in favor of the last 170 years (since 1850) alone.

They actually put old William Jennings Bryan of the Scopes Trial to shame. At least he thought the world was 6,000 years old!

Still, the juxtaposition of the temperature record of the last 66 million years and the sawed-off charts of the climate alarmists tells you all you need to know: to wit, they have simply banished all the “inconvenient” science from the narrative.

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Here’s Why the New Climate Agenda Could Lead to an Energy Crisis of Epic Proportions, by Chris MacIntosh

Markets smoothly make the transition from older products to new ones, governments do not. A lot of people may freeze if its a cold winter because governments are trying to force a transition to renewable energy sources that have serious disadvantages compared to what they’re supposed to replace. From Chris MacIntosh at internationalman.com:

energy crisis

We’re going to eliminate your food now so that you can eat something else in the future that we have not yet got available.

What could possibly go wrong? But that is what is effectively happening in the energy market.

“California energy regulators approved energy efficiency standards aimed at vastly expanding the use of electric appliances for space and water heating in new homes and businesses, in a shift away from using fossil fuels to heat and cool buildings.”

Congress is pushing to end all oil drilling in most US offshore waters, thwart potential mining in the western part of the country, and invest billions of dollars in conservation. This is a $31.7 billion measure, approved 24-13 by the House Natural Resources Committee, and would also impose new fees on oil and mining companies while “funding drought relief, conservation, and other programs.”

This sounds like a boondoggle if ever there was one.

It is now set to be folded into a broader multi-trillion-dollar “social reform and climate change bill” that is taking shape in the House.

I am quite sure they’ll slip this bill in under a seven-foot stack of paper, which all these pointy shoes will sign without even reading.

And we’ll march onwards towards a truly epic energy crisis.

They are pushing this agenda in what they are calling “a once-in-a-generation opportunity” to advance a bold, ambitious investment in the people of the United States.

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“The Revenge of the Fossil Fuels”, by James Rickards

Sunshine and windpower are renewable, but they’re also intermittent and their technology is nowhere near to making them a replacement for fossil fuels. From James Rickards at dailyreckoning.com:

What have the climate alarmists been screaming about for the past 40 years or so? Their agenda is well-known. They want to close nuclear plants; shut down coal electric generators; eliminate natural gas and oil-fired electrical plants; and substitute wind, solar and hydropower in their place.

According to the fanatics, this substitution of renewable energy sources for so-called “fossil fuels” and uranium-powered plants would reduce CO2 emissions and save the planet from the existential threat of global warming.

Everything about this climate alarmist agenda is a fraud.

The evidence that the planet is warming is slight and the effect is likely temporary with global cooling in the forecast. The contribution of CO2 emissions to any global warming is not clear and is at best unsettled science and at worst another fraud.

Most importantly, global energy demand is growing much faster than renewables can come online, meaning that oil, natural gas, clean coal and nuclear energy will be needed whether renewables grow or not.

Wind and Solar Won’t Cut It

Wind turbines and solar panels cannot be the backbone of a modern energy grid because they are intermittent sources. Wind turbines require continual wind and solar panels require continual sunlight. Turbines don’t produce when the wind stops. Solar panels don’t produce at night or on cloudy days.

I have firsthand experience with this because I once built the largest off-grid noncommercial solar panel array in New England. You learn quickly to do laundry, run the dishwasher and use other high-energy electrical appliances on sunny days because you’ll need to conserve your batteries through the snow and rain.

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Green Policies Return the World to Coal, by Clarice Feldman

Renewable energy is not yet ready for prime time, and mistakenly thinking that is has meant that coal, the dirtiest of energies, has had to pick up the slack. From Clarice Feldman at americanthinker.com:

There’s scarcely a place in the modern world that will not be feeling the high cost and discomfort of a shortage of energy supplies and their increasingly soaring prices. Lebanon already is. Due to a shortage of oil, the two power plants that supply 40% of that country’s electricity shut down. There is no electricity in Lebanon and will not be any for some days.

It’s an extreme case, but even the United Kingdom, the EU, the U.S., and China are running up against diminishing ability to obtain the necessary energy supplies to keep things running smoothly. Some of the shortages are due to accidents, like the cutting of an undersea cable to the UK, but most are due to green policies and stupid political choices, ironically shutting down oil and gas-fired power plants and fossil fuel exploitation and transport at the demand of the greens, who grossly overestimate both global warming and the ability of air, sun and water to take their place. Ironically, this means coal — the dirtiest possible fuel — is back in huge demand,

Despite an import ban on Australian coal, China relented and has begun unloading Australian coal because of an extreme power crunch. Coal is now in demand in Europe as gas prices soar and the EU’s energy policies are in large responsible:

The ideological split will drive a wedge between the European Union, a long-time champion of a coal phaseout, and corporate interests as market conditions favour gas-to-coal switching. The switching ratio has slid in coal’s favour in the last weeks of June 2021 and judging by the current futures structure, it will stay in place until at least Q2-2022 [snip] Given the natural limitations to further coal utilization, in Germany the main interaction in the upcoming weeks will be between coal and wind. Coal-fired electricity generation rose to multi-year highs in the first weeks of September when every single day saw wind generation only a fraction of its usual strength and speed. Now, the situation has changed somewhat as wind started blowing again, dropping hard coal generation to an average generation rate of 7.5-8 GWh, still some 30-35% higher than at this time of the year in 2020. Yet still, Germany’s travails are far from over, especially with December looming large on the horizon. According to preliminary plans, that month alone three nuclear plants will stop operating in Germany — Brokdorf, Grohnde and Gundremmingen — with a combined (non-intermittent) capacity of 4 GW, representing the penultimate wave of nuclear phase-out closures before 2022 sees the last 3 reactors decommissioned. Such substantial capacity would need to be replaced with either coal or gas, with profitability skewed overwhelmingly towards the former. [snip]

The current coal demand surge should force the European Union to reconsider its position on coal — as polluting as it might be, it could still help alleviate energy crunches across Europe when the situation demands it. As things stand today, the upcoming four years would see at least seven countries phasing out coal: Portugal (2021), France (2022), UK (2024), Hungary, Italy, Ireland and Greece (all 2025). As Europe has seen nine consecutive year-on-year increases in aggregate coal burns, perhaps more switching flexibility and less bans could still be the way forward.

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The Energy Transition Will Take Decades Not Years, by Tsvetana Paraskova

You’re not just going to flip one switch off and one switch on and seamlessly shift economies and consumers from coal, gas, and oil to renewable energy. From Tsevetan Paraskova at oilprice.com:

  • With natural gas, coal, and oil prices all soaring this summer, it is clear that a successful energy transition will take decades not years
  • Some energy transition proponents may have confused Covid energy demand destruction with a change in consumer behavior
  • The truth is that an energy transition can only occur when clean energy can be provided both cheaply and reliably

This year’s global demand for all three fossil fuels has sent a message to overly enthusiastic proponents of the energy transition – hold your horses.

Those who predicted last year the demise of oil, gas, and coal after the pandemic and those who said that peak oil demand was already behind us because lasting changes in consumer behavior would reduce the use of crude are now facing reality.

Global oil demand is just a few months away from reaching pre-pandemic levels, while natural gas and coal demand have already exceeded the 2019 volumes.

Sure, international airline travel is still struggling because of COVID-related travel restrictions in place in many countries. But economies are bouncing back, industries are growing, and the world needs a lot of energy, once again.

Fossil Fuels Support Economic Growth

And fossil fuels continue to supply most of that energy and will do so for years to come. Last year’s slump in fossil fuel consumption is being erased, and those who expected oil, gas, and coal demand to never return to pre-COVID levels now know they were wrong.

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Europe’s Energy Crisis Presents A Real Danger, by Daniel Lacalle

Europe’s governments have created an energy crisis for Europe. A severe winter could be disastrous. From Daniel Lacalle at app.hedgeye.com:

Europe’s Energy Crisis Presents A Real Danger - AdobeStock 9699481

This week the wholesale price of electricity has exceeded the psychological barrier of 200 euros per megawatt hour in most countries of the European Union.

Although the daily price currently only affects 15% of the energy sold, since the rest is locked for almost twelve months since last winter at much lower prices, it is a sign of future risk. Thousands of contracts are going to have to be revised with huge price increases in the next three months when the locked contracts expire.

The price of liquefied natural gas (LNG) has soared to $34/mmbtu delivered in December and January. In comparable energy terms it would be about $197 per barrel of oil equivalent, according to Morgan Stanley. Meanwhile, the price of natural gas (NBP) has risen more than 200% in 2021.

The price of CO2 emission rights has increased more than 1,000% since 2017, and more than 200% in 2021. This concept, which is a hidden tax for which the governments of the European Union are going to collect more than 21 billion euros in 2021, adds to the inflationary spike.

These extraordinary tax revenues should be used to mitigate the price increases in consumer bills and avoid an energy crisis in Europe that will sink the recovery.

Two key factors explain the rise in energy prices and in both there is a responsibility of governments: The forced closure of the economy is a key factor to understand the damage generated in the supply chains, and the prohibition of investment in gas resources and abandoning nuclear in Germany has led to a more volatile and expensive energy mix in peak demand periods.

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Forget About Peak Oil – We Haven’t Even Reached Peak Coal Yet, by David Blackman

While the US government tries to tether its people and businesses to unreliable renewable energy, most of the rest of the world’s use of coal and oil continues to grow. From David Blackman at forbes.com:

Despite all the heavy dissemination of narratives and talking points about a “climate emergency” and the “energy transition” during 2021, the ongoing economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic proves that the world still heavily relies on fossil fuels to provide its constantly growing energy needs. Indeed, as the demand theory try in vain to revive their own always-wrong narrative, it now appears that the world has yet to even meet the peak of demand for the least environmentally friendly fuel of all, coal.

This is especially true in China, India and much of Asia, where thousands of coal-fired power plants have seen record usage levels in the face of a major heat wave this summer. Bloomberg week that China’s enormous demand for coal this summer has caused commodity prices to spike to the highest level seen in 2 months, briefly climbing above 900 yuan/ton (roughly $139.31 at current exchange rates) on Friday.

The global futures price for coal set a new record high in May as supplies ran low. Australian coal – China’s main international supplier – hit $150 per ton in July, the highest level seen since 2008. The demand is so high in China that it has even led to implementation of electricity rationing in some parts of the country as supplies run short.

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