GEO ENERGY NETWORK

The Atmosphere, Hydrosphere, Lithosphere & Biosphere Powered By The Heliosphere

Archive for December 2008

Is this Clean Coal? (Video)

with 5 comments

Recent News on Energy and the Environment 26.12.08

leave a comment »

Earthquake on Land, Trinidad, December 21 2008

with one comment

Posted by: Karl Ramjohn

From: Seismic Research Centre, The University of the West Indies, St. Augustine, Trinidad & Tobago

Sources: Update: Earthquake on land Trinidad , Earthquake East of Trinidad

On Sunday 21st December an earthquake occurred near east Trinidad at 8:55am local time. The revised location for the event is 10.77°N 61.46°W.

The revised magnitude is 4.3 and the focal depth was 40km. 

The map shows the location of the earthquake.

The earthquake was reported as felt in Westmoorings, Cocorite, Port of Spain, St. Augustine, Arouca, Arima, Chaguanas, San Fernando and Princes Town in Trinidad. This earthquake occurred within the same general area as the 2006 earthquake sequence.

 

Recent News on Energy and the Environment 19.12.08

leave a comment »

Written by geoenergy

December 19, 2008 at 6:06 am

Poznan Climate Summit Ends In Acrimony

leave a comment »

Posted by: Karl Ramjohn

Following on the news, developments & issues associated with the UNFCCC climate change summit that ended last week in Poznan, Poland …

From Earth News, Telegraph.co.uk – December 15, 2008

A key climate change summit has ended in acrimony after the developed world failed to agree to a new tax on industry to help poorer countries survive the droughts and floods attributed to climate change.

Read Full Article: Climate summit ends in acrimony – Telegraph

The UN talks in Poznan, Poland, that cost £23 million and produced 13,000 tonnes of carbon, were supposed to make progress on cutting world emissions and helping the poor adapt to extreme weather conditions. But in the final hours of the meeting ministers from 189 different countries had failed to come to any agreement.

The sticking point was over a controversial adaptation fund that will pump billions of pounds towards helping poorer nations adapt infrastructure, build flood defences and improve agriculture. Although the world agreed to set up the fund from next year, it could not be decided where the money will come from. It had been suggested that existing carbon markets, where heavy industries pay for the right to pollute, should be further taxed to raise the funds. The system is controversial for taxing businesses already suffering the global recession and richer countries refused to commit to the idea.

The EU and Britain said no decision could be made until it is decided how the carbon markets, that have yet to be established in the US, will function or what adaptation measures are needed. But it was no secret that countries like Russia, with heavy industries, were firmly against the scheme. In dramatic scenes developing countries like India and Colombia accused the developed world of abandoning the world’s poor. By the end of negotiations exhausted delegates were forced to shelve the issue until next year.

The conference had made progress on plans to halt deforestation, which causes one fifth of the world’s emissions and agreeing to move to the next stage of talks. However there was no agreement on how to cut greenhouse gases and environment groups criticised the EU for “watering down” its own targets to cut carbon emissions by 20 per cent by 2020. It left aid agencies frustrated at the failure of the summit and questioning the cost.

The talks, that mark the half way point between a summit in Bali last year and an agreement to replace the Kyoto Protocol in Copenhagen next year, had gone on for two weeks. More than 11,000 delegates took part including “climate change superstars” like Arnold Schwarzenegger, Al Gore and Bianca Jagger. The conference, that included a gala dinner serving traditional Polish cuisine, cost more than £23 million.

Related news and articles with perspectives on the conclusion / outcomes of the Poznan conference:

Carbon News and Info > Climate change news > Kyoto & climate politics > Poznan climate talks drift to a close

Recriminations over adaptation fund overshadow Poznan close – 15 Dec 2008 – BusinessGreen

Environmentalists disappointed more was not achieved – The Irish Times – Mon, Dec 15, 2008

Next Climate Summit May Turn on Rich Nations’ Approach to Poor Ones – washingtonpost.com

The Hindu : Front Page : At climate change meet, rich-poor divide perceptible

euronews | Mixed results as UN climate summit wraps up

A Bird’s Eye View

Recent News on Energy and the Environment 12.12.08

leave a comment »

A Decade of Oil Prices: The Rise & Fall – January 1999 to December 2008

with 2 comments

Posted by: Karl Ramjohn

Following on the earlier (and ongoing) discussions on the the price of oil over the past few years, here is an interesting summary and analysis by Prof. Chris Rhodes of the trends in the price of oil over the past 10 years.

–> Energy Balance: A Recent History of Oil Prices.

In January 1999 the price of a barrel of oil reached a low point of $16 when Iraq increased its oil production at the time of the Asian Financial Crisis when demand for oil fell. Prices then increased rapidly, reaching $35 in September 2000, and after a temporary fall reached $40-50 by September 2004. Crude oil prices surged to a record high above $60 in June 2005, and by early August 2005 hit $65 as consumer demand was maintained. In September 2007, the price of US crude oil broke the $80 barrier. In October 2007 a barrel of US light crude oil exceeded $90 for the first time, due to a combination of tensions in eastern Turkey and a fall in the value of the US dollar. The next psychological watershed of $100 was briefly breached in early 2008, but the price fell again until the end of February after which it remained and rose well above this new setting. Then a visible ramping effect became evident and so the price exceeded $110 on March 12, 2008; $125 on May 9, 2008; $130 on May 21, 2008, $140 on June 26, 2008 and $145 on July 3, 2008. The record was reached on July 3, 2008 at $147.27 as a consequence of geopolitical tensions over Iranian missile tests.

The above data stress the point that the price of oil is highly sensitive to the world political situation and to a general sense of confidence, including that in the stock markets. When the $147 barrel appeared, it did appear there would be no stopping the escalating price of oil, and that by December 2008 a barrel of oil might cost around $150 or more, amid speculation that by the end of 2009, it would be nearer $200. However, oil prices declined by more than $20 over the next two weeks in July 2008, and seemed to stabilise at near $125 a barrel on July 24, 2008. A forcing factor came into play, which was that the very high price of oil had changed people’s behaviour and they were now driving less with a reduced demand for oil. Oil prices then dipped further, reaching $112 a barrel, on August 11, 2008.

On September 15 the $100 psychological barrier was again broken, but in reverse, when the price fell below $100 for the first time in seven months. On October 11 there occurred a massive crash in the value of global equities, with a barrel of oil falling by 10% to $77.70. In consequence of further economic slowdown the price continued to slide and today (December 4, 2008 ) it is trading at around $45 a barrel. Rather than the $200 predicted last summer some analysts are now predicting a $20 barrel sometime during 2009. I must stress, however, that even if this does happen it will be a short-lived event, because the facts of geological limits to production, increased production costs to obtain more difficultly recovered oil and that demand is still rising (demand is simply rising less steeply during this economic recession, but it is still in the ascendant).

…continues…