Global Warming-Energy-Environment

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Mining rights group fights BLM road closure in California

Mining rights group fights BLM road closure in California
The fight for mining rights on public lands in the western Mojave Desert is heating up once again.

In an alleged attempt to illegally block small-scale gold miners from accessing their mining claims, the Bureau of Land Management has erected “ROUTE CLOSED” signs near Barstow, Calif.

Two Southern California gold prospecting clubs, the Route 66 Gold Miners and the Temecula Valley Prospectors began planning an outing on two Route 66 mining claims near Barstow last June. The event was announced at the end of August and set for mid-October.

But near the end of September, the American Mining Rights Association received word that the Bureau of Land Management had posted signs blocking access to the mining claims.

By Brad Jones - Monday, December 11, 2017 - Full Story

IEA’s World Energy Outlook 2017 Foresees a Transformation of the Global Energy System

IEA's World Energy Outlook 2017 Foresees a Transformation of the Global Energy System
The International Energy Agency (IEA) released its World Energy Outlook 2017 in November, providing global energy market projections through 2040. The outlook assumes that governments will stick to the pledges they made on energy, including India and China’s pledges to move away from fossil fuels and the United States’ to reduce its demand for oil through fuel economy improvements for cars and trucks. Despite the pledges, IEA predicts that global energy demand will increase by 30 percent by 2040, which is equivalent to adding another China and India to today’s global energy demand. It predicts that the global economy will grow at an annual average rate of 3.4 percent and that population will expand from 7.4 billion today to more than 9 billion in 2040.

The largest contribution to demand growth—almost 30 percent—comes from India, whose share of global energy use increases to 11 percent by 2040, but below its 18 percent share in the expected global population. Southeast Asia’s energy demand is expected to grow at twice the pace of China, resulting in Asia accounting for two-thirds of global energy growth. The Middle East, Africa and Latin America account for the other one-third.

The IEA sees four major shifts in the global energy system: the rapid deployment and falling costs of clean energy technologies, the growing electrification of energy, the shift to a more services-oriented economy and a cleaner energy mix in China and the resilience of shale gas and tight oil in the United States.

By Institute for Energy Research - Sunday, December 10, 2017 - Full Story

Nature for Nature’s Sake

Nature for Nature's Sake, Alaska's ANWR region
Recently, the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources debated Alaska Senator Lisa Murkowski’sproposalto establish a competitive energy resource leasing and development program within a sliver of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) known as the 1002 area. In simple terms, the committee deliberated over the question should we drill.

Rather than asking,“Should we drill?” I submit that we ought to reframe the question and instead ask,“Why is a federal government ban on productive economic activity the status quo?”

My answer is that this prohibitive norm exists because our public discourse has been permeated by the idea that nonhuman life on earth has intrinsic value and that we as human beings have no moral right to affect it for our benefit.

By Institute for Energy Research - Sunday, December 10, 2017 - Full Story

Keystone is anti-hydrocarbon zealotry in microcosm

Keystone is anti-hydrocarbon zealotry in microcosm

The Nebraska Public Service Commission (NPSC) recently voted to approve the state’s segment of the 1,200-mile Keystone XL Pipeline. While that would appear to allow construction to move forward, more obstacles loom before KXL can finally bring North Dakota and Canadian crude oil to Texas refineries.

Commissioners who voted against approval have raised objections, some landowners still object to the pipeline crossing their lands, other landowners were not aware that the new route will cross their properties, and environmentalists plan more lawsuits to stop TransCanada’s plans to finish Keystone.

By Paul Driessen - Sunday, December 10, 2017 - Full Story

The One Indicator OPEC Must Watch

The One Indicator OPEC Must Watch
“We will not let go of our current approach until we reach a balanced market,” Saudi oil minister Khalid al-Falih said Monday at a news conference in Riyadh.

OPEC ended months of speculation last week when it decided to extend its production cuts through the end of 2018, easing concerns that the limits would be lifted before the oil market was ready. But while it put some uncertainty to rest, the next question is what OPEC does when the oil market becomes “balanced”? What is the exit strategy?

By -- Nick Cunningham- Thursday, December 7, 2017 - Full Story

Solar Industry Financial Woes

Solar Industry Financial Woes
Germany’s last remaining major solar manufacturer, Bonn-based Solarworld, earlier this year announced it would file for bankruptcy. Solarworld’s demise was the last in a spectacular series of solar manufacturer bankruptcies that swept across Germany over the past year, with names like Solon, Solar Millennium and Q-Cells going under. 1

Up to 100 solar PV firms in Japan could face bankruptcy this year, with more than double the number of firms going bust in the first half of the year than in the same period in 2016.2

By Jack Dini - Wednesday, December 6, 2017 - Full Story

What’s in Packaged Food?

What’s in Packaged Food?
Americans’ collective waist has been inching up every year and blood pressure increased thanks in part to our sedentary lifestyles and to the amount of sugar and salt in all food. For convenience and to save time, we often eat fast food and restaurant rich foods and walk much less than our slender European counterparts. Portion size is also much larger than we need.

Consumers are busy, too trustworthy, and not very fond of reading packaging labels; food producers count on that. According to nutritionists and medical professionals cited by Michelle Crouch, manufacturers hide ingredients they should list on the packaging under the label of “natural flavoring” in order to deceive consumers. And the deception is massive. (Michelle Crouch, “Fifty Things Food Manufacturers Won’t Tell You”)

How do you hide sugar? By giving it different names such as “high fructose corn syrup, cane crystals, dextrose, evaporated can juice, agave nectar, and fruit juice concentrate.” In doing so, the amount of sugar does not appear as the number one ingredient on the list. Walter Willett, M.D., said that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) might eventually require food labeling to show all types of sugar contained and print them on the package as “added sugars.”

By Dr. Ileana Johnson Paugh - Tuesday, December 5, 2017 - Full Story

UN agency to Congress: Drop dead

UN agency to Congress: Drop dead
The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) in France has received over $48 million from America’s National Institutes of Health (NIH), to determine whether various chemicals cause cancer in humans. Of more than 900 chemicals it has reviewed, only one was ever found non-carcinogenic. The latest substance to face IARC scrutiny is glyphosate, the active ingredient in the herbicide RoundUp.

Not surprisingly, the agency branded glyphosate carcinogenic. But this time evidence is surfacing of collusion with anti-chemical activist groups and class action lawyers, serious conflicts of interest involving a key IARC glyphosate reviewer, and IARC manipulation of scientific reports along with deliberate withholding of studies that concluded the chemical is safe, so that the agency could get a guilty verdict.

Despite this disturbing evidence, and demonstrable proof of the chemical’s safety, the European Union barely extended its authorization for glyphosate use, and then by just five years, instead of the usual 15.

By Paul Driessen - Sunday, December 3, 2017 - Full Story

Closing the Wind PTC Loophole

Closing the Wind PTC Loophole
For the past 25 years, the federal government has coddled the wind industry by lavishing upon it billions of dollars’ worth of subsidies. The most prominent of these subsidies is the Production Tax Credit (PTC), which now costs Americans over $5 billion dollars per year. Embroiled in the current tax debate is a set of provisions that would put an end to the wind PTC—a process that was supposed to be put in place by Congress in 2015, but was prevented by a loophole in the IRS guidance.

By Institute for Energy Research - Sunday, December 3, 2017 - Full Story

A Plea for the Night

A Plea for the NightEveryone cherishes the night. For most of us it’s a time for contemplation, rest and recuperation from the day’s hectic activities. For others, a “day of work” starts at nightfall.

Despite the official calendar claiming that we are close to the longest night of the year (in the northern hemisphere), some facts appear to contradict that. For example, “light pollution” is steadily on the increase. It’s being claimed (translated from German) that “99% of Europeans live under a light-polluted sky and 60% cannot discern the Milky Way.” That’s not only a problem for astronomers (hobbyists and professionals alike) but for everyone living in modern cities. Nights have become nearly as bright as some days with all the street lighting, for a long time already.

By Dr. Klaus L.E. Kaiser - Saturday, December 2, 2017 - Full Story

ANWR: What’s at Stake?

ANWR: What’s at Stake?
The Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) evokes stirring, iconic imagery in our minds: polar bears, glaciers, foraging herds of caribou on wind-swept plains.

The prospect of oil and gas companies entering the region’s landscape leaves many people unsettled and, to no surprise, proposals to open a portion of ANWR for energy exploration have faced fierce opposition.

By Institute for Energy Research - Thursday, November 30, 2017 - Full Story

How the Market Process Regulates Methane Emissions

How the Market Process Regulates Methane Emissions
This past month, the Interior Department proposed delaying the implementation of the Methane and Waste Prevention Rule. The purpose of the rule is to limit the amount of methane that oil and natural gas producers may release or burn off as part of their production on public lands. According to some estimates, the rule would cost $279 million a year and block more than 800,000 jobs by 2020.

The decision to review this costly regulation has been met with the usual animosity in Washington: politicians have drafted a letter condemning the decision and anti-fossil fuel groups are challenging it in the courts. But why are so many people interested in saving a regulation that will have such a negligible impact on reducing carbon emissions?

By Institute for Energy Research - Tuesday, November 28, 2017 - Full Story

OPEC Will Extend The Cut

OPEC Will Extend The Cut
There will be an OPEC deal extension—no matter the public tussling between opposing forces in the industry cartel—if the world’s largest oil producers are really determined to end the supply glut.

A failure to agree on the market remediation would cause oil prices to plummet immediately, forfeiting any gains that have been made in the last year.

By -- Zainab Calcuttawala- Monday, November 27, 2017 - Full Story

Sharing our blessings

Sharing our blessings, gas, oil, fossil fuels
This Thanksgiving weekend is a good time to express our gratitude for the jobs, living standards and life spans we enjoy today—largely because of abundant, reliable, affordable energy, 83% of it still because of fossil fuels. As my CFACT colleague Craig Rucker suggests, we should also be grateful that we live in a country that can provide hundreds of millions of turkey dinners, at a price anyone can afford, all on the same day, thanks to our free market economy (and fossil fuels).

Thanksgiving is also an opportunity to ponder why billions in our human family still do not enjoy those blessings, have electricity only sporadically or not at all, and try to survive on a few dollars a day or less. It’s a time to reflect on what we can do to help change policies that perpetuate that situation.

By Paul Driessen - Saturday, November 25, 2017 - Full Story

Cleaned-Up Coal and Clean Air: Facts About Air Quality and Coal-Fired Power Plants

Coal-fired electricity generation is far cleaner today than ever before. The popular misconception that our air quality is getting worse is wrong, as shown by EPA’s air quality data. Modern coal plants, and those retrofitted with modern technologies to reduce pollution, are a success story and are currently providing 30 percent of our electricity. Undoubtedly, pollution emitted by coal-fired power plants will continue to decrease as technology improves.

By Institute for Energy Research - Wednesday, November 22, 2017 - Full Story

EU Carbon Capture Project A Massive Financial Failure

EU Carbon Capture Project A Massive Financial Failure
Ten years ago EU leaders said that a technology called carbon capture and sequestration, also known as carbon capture and storage (CCS) should be deployed with new fossil-fuel power plants by 2020. 1

This technology supposedly would reduce the negative impact the extensive use of energy sources coal, oil and gas have on the earth’s climate.

By Jack Dini - Monday, November 20, 2017 - Full Story

Virginia goes Don Quixote

Virginia goes Don Quixote
Democrat Ralph Northam had barely won the Virginia governor’s race when his party announced it would impose a price on greenhouse gases emissions, require a 3% per year reduction in GHG emissions, and develop a cap-and-trade scheme requiring polluters to buy credits for emitting carbon dioxide.

By Paul Driessen - Sunday, November 19, 2017 - Full Story

As COP 23 Convenes, Global Carbon Dioxide Emissions Continue to Rise

The 23rd annual Conference of the Parties (COP 23) is currently meeting in Bonn, Germany, to work on a rulebook for implementing the Paris Agreement. Since many of the Paris pledges remain fairly opaque and the specific policies the countries will take to meet them are vague, a major feature of the conference will be to obtain transparency in measuring, reporting and verifying each country’s greenhouse gas emissions. Since the Paris Agreement does not include sanctions for countries that do not meet their agreed-to targets, peer pressure is the main mechanism for ensuring that governments abide by their commitments. The final rule book is due at the end of 2018 and is subject to approval at the next climate summit in Katowice, Poland.

By Institute for Energy Research - Sunday, November 19, 2017 - Full Story

Back to Bolted-Down Industries

Once upon a time Australia was attractive to processing, refining and manufacturing industries using our abundant mineral and food resources, our reliable low-cost coal-fired electricity and a workforce trained in technical skills.

No longer.

Australia used to have 11 oil refineries, spread around the country. There are just 4 left, all over fifty years old, and all in danger of closing down. Green barriers to oil exploration have forced most of them to rely on costly imported crude oil.

By Viv Forbes - Friday, November 17, 2017 - Full Story

Noted climate scientist who sometimes claims to speak for God called global warming skeptics pervese

This is the sort of thing that ultimately drove me to Protestantism, which I say with complete affection for my many Catholic friends and family members.

I understand the doctrine that the pope only claims infallibility when he speaks ex cathedra, and he doesn’t claim to be doing so here. But you can’t invest that type of authority in an individual on certain matters, and allow him to be as sloppy as he is here on others:

By Dan Calabrese - Thursday, November 16, 2017 - Full Story