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Who Gets Big Subsidies? Not Renewables

January 5th, 2014 by Fereidoon Sioshansi, EEnergy Informer

Renewables often get blamed for getting big subsidies. As reported in the Dec 2013 issue of this newsletter, Europe’s biggest 10 utilities recently called for an end to all renewable subsidies. Those who dislike subsidies on fiscal or ideological reasons must be reminded of two facts that are not widely known: Virtually all forms of energy extraction and production receive some form of subsidy, tax break or other incentives; and the biggest culprits are not renewables but fossil fuels.
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Oil and the dead cat bounce

October 18th, 2012 by Andrew McKillop, Former Expert-Policy & Programming, DG XVII Energy, European Commission

What crisis? Nymex and ICE oil price movement shows how oil prices can be moved anywhere as long as its up, except of course when its down, where fundamentals point with stubborn determination.Recent weeks, especially the last show that sometimes the oil bulls can get dispirited and run out of news support, and be forced to take a cut in their boundless optimism which says we really can have $130 a barrel for Brent and $125 for WTI like Goldman Sachs tells us we can – this year, in 2012. When the markets take an especially hard hit, like the recent loss of $10 off the barrel price, the dead cat bounce can take the shape of a Goldman tiger bounce – paper tiger of course.

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The demise of European refineries?

May 6th, 2012 by Maxime Lambert, Mines ParisTech

Over the last years, European refining has been in the spotlight for several closures among its refineries. It is now the case of Petroplus to be at stake. Petroplus was the largest independent oil refiner in Europe, but the company is shutting out 3 of its refineries because of financial problems. In particular, in France, its Petit-Couronne refinery is now the symbol of deindustrialization in Europe and politicians have taken on the subject to rescue employments. Is it really the end of refining like other industries in Europe?

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Peak Oil Driving The Global Gas Shift

March 26th, 2012 by Andrew McKillop, Former Expert-Policy & Programming, DG XVII Energy, European Commission

In its February 15 report ‘Resurging North American oil production’, Citigroup’s analysts claimed that the shale gas boom was set to morph into a shale oil boom. The report said: “The concept of peak oil is being buried in North Dakota, which is now leading the US to be the fastest growing oil producer in the world. The belief that global oil production has peaked, or is on the cusp of doing so, has underpinned much of crude oil’s decade-long rally (setting aside the 2008 sell-off)”.

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The dangers of an interventionist oil market policy

July 1st, 2011 by Thijs Van de Graaf, Ghent University

The international oil markets have been quite turbulent for the past several months. The wave of protests sweeping the Arab world and the loss of Libyan sweet crude have fueled fears of shortages and have driven oil prices higher. Last week, on June 23, the western industrialized countries therefore decided to play their trump card: the strategic oil reserves. Over the course of the coming month, 60 million barrels of oil will be released onto the market from the emergency supplies of the United States, Japan and some European countries.
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Oil Price Volatility: Causes and Recommendations to The EU

March 12th, 2010 by Jean-Marie Chevalier, University Paris-Dauphine

The volatility of the price of crude oil, as demonstrated in 2008-2009, raises a number of questions over how the price of oil is determined and the complex game of interdependencies between the physical and financial markets. It has also forced governments to recently take initiatives.
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Alberta Clipper – Betamax Of Energy World

September 25th, 2009 by Fereidoon Sioshansi, EEnergy Informer

Even former President George Bush had to admit that the US economy – like many others but even more so – is addicted to oil, which increasingly means imported oil. The question is do we continue to feed the addict no matter what the costs and consequences, or do we encourage the addict to kick the habit?
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Does Imported Oil Threaten U.S. National Security?

May 22nd, 2009 by Andreas Goldthau, Central European University

Concerns about the economic, geopolitical, and national security consequences of U.S. imports of oil have triggered arguments for adopting policies to reduce oil imports. Many members of Congress have advocated “energy independence” for the United States.
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How long will petroleum resources last?

November 23rd, 2008 by Roberto F. Aguilera, International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis

The quantity of available conventional petroleum is greater than often assumed, given the tendency to overlook unassessed areas and future reserve growth. Furthermore, volumes of unconventional resources are even more abundant than conventional resources. As a result, conventional and unconventional resources combined are likely to last far longer than many now expect.

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A double oil shock scenario

March 30th, 2008 by Denis Babusiaux, ENSPM, Paris

As far as oil prices are concerned, many scenarios are possible. A jump to $300 per barrel or more in the near future may be the result of a geopolitical crisis in Iran, Venezuela, Saudi Arabia or elsewhere. Low price scenarios seem unlikely today but cannot be completely excluded. Another one which we consider of interest is a “dual-crisis” or “double-shock”. It would present a number of similarities with the development observed between 1973 and the end of the eighties.
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