Archive for the category “Transportation”

News update

California Drought Tests History of Endless Growth
The New York Times
For more than a century, California has been the state where people flocked for a better life — 164,000 square miles of mountains, farmland and coastline, shimmering with ambition and dreams, money and beauty. It was the cutting-edge symbol of possibility: Hollywood, Silicon Valley, aerospace, agriculture and vineyards. But now a punishing drought is forcing a reconsideration of whether the aspiration of untrammeled growth that has for so long been this state’s driving engine has run against the limits of nature.

Global Energy Trends and Implications for India: The Need to Consume Less Oil
Tobias Engelmeier, The Energy Collective
Oil consumption will rise in India as the economy and the population grows. This is a major headache for the government, since India imports almost all of this fuel. Currently oil prices are fairly low, but if they rise again, they will drive inflation and open up a large trade deficit.

China’s Fuel Demand to Peak Sooner Than Oil Giants Expect
Bloomberg Business
China’s biggest oil refiner is signaling the nation is headed to its peak in diesel and gasoline consumption far sooner than most Western energy companies and analysts are forecasting. If correct, the projections by China Petroleum & Chemical Corp., or Sinopec, a state-controlled enterprise with public shareholders in Hong Kong, pose a big challenge to the world’s largest oil companies. They’re counting on demand from China and other developing countries to keep their businesses growing as energy consumption falls in more advanced economies.

How changing driving habits are changing the oil and gas industry
Omar Mouallem, Alberta Oil Magazine
For 100 years, the automotive and energy sectors were like two wheels on the same axle, continually spinning forward. Young North Americans are delaying getting their licenses, driving fewer kilometers and buying fewer cars. Given that transportation makes up two-thirds of refined petroleum consumption, the trend has some wondering if the biggest threat facing the oil industry is peak car, not peak oil.

How the climate change debate got hijacked by the wrong standard of proof
Kurt Cobb
The deniers in the fossil fuel industry and elsewhere are attempting by sleight-of-hand to get both the public and policymakers to abandon the preponderance of evidence standard used primarily in civil trialsand which is similar to evidence-based public policymakingin favor of another judicial standard designed for criminal trials, namely, beyond a reasonable doubt.

The Problem of Human Population
Javier, Peak Oil Barrel
Since the growth rate is declining naturally, if not intervene any new factor human population on Earth would peak slightly above the 10 billion people by 2062 according to the United Nations. This is the problem size. Political campaigns to reduce the growth of the human population are decreasing, not increasing. The question therefore is not to analyze whether the Earth is able to support 10 billion people, as it most likely can, but if it can do it indefinitely. (Note: Translated from Spanish by computer and contains grammatical errors.)

Eco-Socialism or Barbarism 11 Theses
Bruno Kern, Eco-Socialist Blog
(Message from Saral Sarkar, Eco-Socialist Blog: For those who do not have enough time to read the books and texts written by myself and Bruno Kern (of the Initiative Eco-Socialism) texts that thoroughly expound our fundamental argumentation and perspective for/on eco-socialism we now offer a very short text written by Bruno. In it, Bruno has summarized the essential points of our argumentation and perspective in 11 theses.)

Socialism, Capitalism and Anarchism in a collapsing world economy
Peter Goodchild, Survive Peak Oil
The irony is that the present world of global capitalism cannot be considered governed in any democratic sense. If we stretch the definition of democracy to equate it with legitimacy i.e., the sanction of the governed, the social contract then one could almost say that it is global capitalism that should be regarded as anarchism. The world is governed, but it has no government (an-archia) in any legitimate form.

News update

The Peak Oil Crisis: Iraq on the Precipice
From Oilprice.com
ISIS now has control of one of three major refineries in Iraq which supplies the motor fuel and oil for power stations for the northern part of Iraq. Let’s assume, however, that before this year or next is out, Iraqi oil exports drop substantially as it has in several other oil-exporting states undergoing similar political trauma. Just what does this mean for the world’s oil supply? (Also see: It’s the Oil, Stupid! Insurgency and War on a Sea of Oil (Tomdispatch.com)

Oil Production Numbers Keep Going Down
By Dave Summers, Oilprice.com
One problem with defining a peak in global oil production is that it is only really evident sometime after the event, when one can look in the rear view mirror and see the transition from a growing oil supply to one that is now declining. Before that relatively absolute point, there will likely come a time when global supply can no longer match the global demand for oil that exists at that price. We are beginning to approach the latter of these two conditions,

Oil-Rich Iran Planning To Spend $60 Million On Solar PV This Year
From Cleantechnica.com
Leading oil producer Iran is aiming big with renewable energy, based on recent statements made by the Iranian Energy Minister, Hamid Chitchian. The country’s new goal is to add 5,000 MW of new solar energy and wind energy capacity by the year 2018. That’s a big increase over the country’s previous aims, and sort of makes you wonder what it is that they know about the near-term future of the oil industry.

Is North Dakota Oil Production Rapidly Approaching a Peak?
From The Motley Fool
North Dakotas Bakken is one of the most phenomenal shale oil growth stories in the U.S. But some commentators suggest that this rapid production growth cant go on for much longer, citing sharp decline rates for Bakken wells. Could this mean that Bakken production is rapidly approaching a peak?

Carbon offset scheme complicit in genocidal land grabs
By Nafeez Ahmed, The Guardian
Between 2000 and 2010, a total of 500 million acres of land in Asia, Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean was acquired or negotiated under deals brokered on behalf of foreign governments or transnational corporations. Many such deals are geared toward growing crops or biofuels for export to richer, developed countries – with the consequence that small-holder farmers are displaced from their land and lose their livelihood while local communities go hungry. Less known factors, however, include conservation and carbon offsetting.

Govt readies Rs 14,000 cr subsidy for hybrid, electric cars
From The Times of India
Buying a hybrid or an electric car may soon fetch you a subsidy from the government, which is readying a Rs 14,000-crore scheme to push green vehicles. The subsidy will be a proportion of the difference between the price of a car running on fossil fuel and that of a green vehicle, said sources involved with the discussions. (Also see: a debate on the issue in The Times of India)

Govt panel proposes green cess on petrol, vehicles
From The Times of India
Vehicle owners could soon be asked to pay more for environment. A green surcharge of Rs 2 on petrol sold across the country and green cess on existing personal vehicles at the rate of 4% of annual insured value are some of the recommendations of a government panel. The panel has suggested levy of 7.5% urban transport tax on purchase of new petrol cars and 20% in case of diesel cars.

Solar power stocks see multi-fold jump on hopes from Modi govt
From The Economic Times
Companies with exposure to the solar power segment have seen a bull-run since the beginning of this year, with stock prices jumping three-and-half times. They have gained on expectation that the Modi government would implement the successful Gujarat solar-power model elsewhere, too.

Elon Musk Releases Electric Car Technology Patents
From Los Angeles Magazine
South African-born entrepreneur Elon Musk, the man behind the Tesla electric car, announced last week that Tesla’s automotive patents would be made available, open source-style, “for the advancement of electric vehicle technology.” The move shocked the automotive cognoscenti because patents are generally considered sacrosanct evidence of differentiating technological advances.

News update: View from India

Peak Oil and Implications for India
While it is dicey to predict oil reserves and production rates, one can accurately compute and collate past figures. Experts have been predicting peaking since 1995 but because of energy-efficient machines, substitution and use of natural gas and electricity for heating and so on, the dates have been shifting. This underscores the fact that the only reliable way to predict the timing of peak oil will be by examining past statistics. The most telling evidence of peaking is the near plateauing and negative rise in production for the seven years ending 2011. An article by Maj. Gen. (Retd) S.C.N. Jatar. (Editors Note: Requires subscription to access article)
From IDSA.in

Is the world about to run out of oil? 
Peaking of oil supplies presents an unprecedented risk-management problem. Viable mitigation options could cost trillions of dollars and require more than a decade of intense effort. An article by Maj. Gen. (Retd) S.C.N. Jatar.
From the Business Standard

Peak Oil and India: An Analysis
Are we scraping the bottom of the barrel? Despite the Big Oil bravado, energy gurus actually believe the world might be nearing Peak Oil The End of Cheap Gasoline. An analysis by Akhilesh Singh.
From Akshilesh.in

India Spends $2.2 Billion to Triple Oil Reserve
India, Asia’s second-largest energy user, will spend $2.2 billion to more than triple its proposed emergency crude oil reserves as it seeks to protect the economy against supply disruptions. Four caverns with a combined capacity of 12.5 million metric tons will be built at a cost of 133 billion rupees ($2.2 billion) and add to three with 5.03 million tons of capacity under construction, Indian Strategic Petroleum Reserves Ltd. Chief Executive Officer Rajan K. Pillai said. The government may turn to its biggest refiners Indian Oil Corp. (IOCL) and Hindustan Petroleum Corp. (HPCL) to help fill the reservoirs, he said.
From Bloomberg News

The Demise of the Car
Global production of oil started to flatten more than seven years ago, in 2005. And the developing world, which garners headlines for its increased demand for oil, is running mainly on coal-fired electrical power. There is no question that the non-OECD countries are leading the way as liquid-based transport – automobiles and airlines – have entered longterm decline. Why, therefore, do policy makers in both the developing and developed world continue to invest in automobile infrastructure? [Also read: Peak oil? The trend to watch is peak car. A blog post by Nick Butler of the Financial Times]
From Peakprosperity.com

Ready for peak oil?
As cities expand and markets keep fuel prices high, Indians are demanding better public transport. The States must deliver, but they are only inching ahead. (Editors Note: The article deals with issues plaguing public transport in India, and has very little to do with Peak Oil itself.)
From The Hindu

Traffic in the era of climate change

Senior Indian journalist Vidyadhar Date’s book Traffic In the Era of Climate Change was released in 2012.Given Date’s incisive work as a journalist, the book will be a major milestone in the debate on formulation of urban policy and the regulating the use and abuse of personal vehicles.
Introducing the book on his Facebook post, Date writes, “I am glad to inform you that my book on the inequality and injustice in India’s transport system has just been published. It questions the automobile-dominated pattern of transport planning and urban development. It calls for a humane, people-friendly, environment-friendly shift in favour of public transport.”

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