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Policy news & blueprints for the transition to a new Sustainable and Social Economy
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Shale and non-Russian gas imports at heart of new EU energy strategy

Shale and non-Russian gas imports at heart of new EU energy strategy | The Great Transition | Scoop.it
Ukraine crisis forces bloc to seek diverse sources of gas, but green groups complain ignoring renewables is a mistake
Willy De Backer's insight:

The EU's latest energy security strategy bets big on 'sustainable' production of fossil fuels ignoring the climate impacts of more gas.

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IEA chief: Only a decade left in US shale boom

IEA chief: Only a decade left in US shale boom | The Great Transition | Scoop.it
A surge in US oil and natural gas production has lifted hopes about North American energy security, but that growth will plateau and will be difficult to replicate elsewhere, says Maria van der Hoeven, chief executive of the International Energy Agency, in an interview with the Monitor.
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Fracking: American dream, Chinese pipe-dream, global nightmare

Fracking: American dream, Chinese pipe-dream, global nightmare | The Great Transition | Scoop.it

"The only way out of this vicious circle is for Europe, China and India to realize that fracking is a pipe dream and focus on developing viable renewable energy sources while curbing their addiction to fossil fuels. Policymakers must not let shale gas become a smokescreen obscuring the need for robust emissions reduction policies"

 

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Natural Gas Must Peak Between 2020 and 2030 To Meet Climate Goals

A new report on climate change and natural gas usage finds natural gas must peak sooner than many policymakers currently realize is necessary—if the United States is to meet its climate goals and avoid the worst impacts of global warming.
Willy De Backer's insight:

Luckily there are some rational voices on natural gas in the US; not all believe in the fairy tales of the shale gas lobbyists.

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Cuadrilla PR man admits George Osborne's shale gas revolution won’t cut energy bills

Cuadrilla PR man admits George Osborne's shale gas revolution won’t cut energy bills | The Great Transition | Scoop.it
George Osborne's plan to drive down energy prices through a shale gas revolution was dealt a blow when Britain's sole active shale gas producer said that even a boom would have a “basically insignificant” impact on prices.
Willy De Backer's insight:

Must-read for any European business leader who believes the fairy tales that Europe can have its own shale revolution leading to lower energy prices.

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The Making of a Natural Gas Glut

The Making of a Natural Gas Glut | The Great Transition | Scoop.it
A former investment banker says the explosion in shale gas development, such as frenzied activity in northern B.C., was a financial mania largely driven by Wall Street bankers intent on capitalizing upon a record $46-billion worth of mergers and acqui...
Willy De Backer's insight:

Good article on how the Golden Age of Gas myth is driven by Wall Street speculators.

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The Great Oil Swindle: why the new black gold rush leads off a fiscal cliff

The Great Oil Swindle: why the new black gold rush leads off a fiscal cliff | The Great Transition | Scoop.it

"The eventual consequences of the current gas glut, in other words, are more than likely to be an unsustainable shale bubble that collapses under its own weight, precipitating a supply collapse and price spike. Rather than fuelling prosperity, the shale revolution will instead boost a temporary recovery masking deeper, structural instabilities. Inevitably, those instabilities will collide, leaving us with an even bigger financial mess, on a faster trajectory toward costly environmental destruction."

Willy De Backer's insight:

Very good analysis by Nafeez Ahmed of the "peak oil is dead" and "shale gas will save the world" stories launched by Big Oil and Gas companies.

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New studies link earthquakes to waste water from fracking in shale gas

New studies link earthquakes to waste water from fracking in shale gas | The Great Transition | Scoop.it
The link between a recent rise in earthquakes and wastewater disposal from shale gas wells grows stronger, though skeptics remain.
Willy De Backer's insight:

From MIT Technology Review: New American studies provide insight into the relationship between seismic activity and shale gas fracking.

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In a Natural Gas Glut, Big Winners and Losers

In a Natural Gas Glut, Big Winners and Losers | The Great Transition | Scoop.it
Low prices for consumers. Big profits for bankers. But the gas glut in the United States has meant much pain for gas exploration companies and their investors.

 

Brilliant article on America's natural gas glut and the influence of financial capitalism on its boom and future bust. Must-read article for European policy-makers who dream of a Golden Age of Gas for Europe.

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Minister calls for German debate on fracking

Minister calls for German debate on fracking | The Great Transition | Scoop.it
Germany's environment minister has called for wider public debate on gas extraction through the practice of fracking. Opponents fear it could have environmental consequences.

 

Deutsche Welle reports on a new report by the German Federal Environment Agency. The report recommends to introduce manadatory environmental impact assessments for all fracking.

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Natural Gas and Its Role In the U.S.’s Energy Endgame

Natural Gas and Its Role In the U.S.’s Energy Endgame | The Great Transition | Scoop.it
The boom in natural gas production has undeniable benefits for the United States. But two policy analysts argue that embracing a monolithic energy future dominated by gas will mean the loss of a golden opportunity: Leveraging cheap, abundant gas to create a sustainable future based on renewable power.

 

Realistic assessment in Yale Environment 360 on the future of natural gas in the US, with lessons for Europe.

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Get It Right on Gas

Get It Right on Gas | The Great Transition | Scoop.it
We can have a natural gas revolution that transforms our whole country or one that just transforms the electric grid. What’s it going to be?

 

IN the NY Times, Thomas Friedman gets it wrong on gas.His wishful thinking overlooks that gas is not replacing coal but just being added to the fossil-fuel load on climate, that the gas revolution has already killed the renewables revolution and that there will be no "golden" rules for fracking as political elites in the US and Europe are full in the pocket of the fossil-fuel industry.

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Shale gas strategy 'not the optimum path': Fatih Birol

Shale gas strategy 'not the optimum path': Fatih Birol | The Great Transition | Scoop.it
An energy strategy without fossil fuels would be preferable to the regulated gas pathway outlined in the International Energy Agency (IEA)’s new report, the paper’s own author told EurActiv in an exclusive interview yesterday (30 May).

 

Excellent interview on EurActiv showing the tightrope Fatih Birol has to walk when communicating the IEA's views on the golden age of gas. When you read the report well, you understand the IEA clearly sees shale gas as the wrong path leading to unacceptable climate impacts.

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Export Stupidity

Export Stupidity | The Great Transition | Scoop.it
If the US could supply Europe with large amounts of fuel, that would reduce the Continent’s dependency on Russia while depriving Putin of needed revenues.
 
Willy De Backer's insight:

Richard Heinberg's checks the facts to counter all those who want to export American surplus gas to punish Putin: "... the United States remains a net importer of both oil and natural gas. Let me repeat and emphasize that: the United States remains a net importer of both oil and natural gas."

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IEA: The World Is Totally Unprepared For When The Great American Shale Boom Fizzles

IEA: The World Is Totally Unprepared For When The Great American Shale Boom Fizzles | The Great Transition | Scoop.it
The International Energy Agency says world markets are unprepared for when — and it's a when, not if, it asserts, — the Great American Shale Boom fizzles.
Willy De Backer's insight:

As always, the new IEA report puts the finger on the weak spots of current global energy policy.

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Why the Peak Oilers are still right

Why the Peak Oilers are still right | The Great Transition | Scoop.it
The oil and gas boom in the U.S. has some people arguing that we no longer need to worry about fossil-fuel supplies. Au contraire.
Willy De Backer's insight:

Excellent analysis by Richard Heinberg of the changing game between Goliath (the fossl fuel Cornucopians) and little David (the Peakists), with good arguments on why the story will end as we know.

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Giorgio Clarotti's comment, August 6, 2013 6:29 AM
Hi Willy, surprised not to have found a Scoop on this week's article on the Economist. See my tweet of Saturday 4th August Eurobrat@Eurobrat14 Aug
The end of #oilage?
What happens if even the Free capitalist market bible starts doubting #peakoil? The Economist http://goo.gl/uOVFC8
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The Shale Gas Revolution: is it already over?

The Shale Gas Revolution: is it already over? | The Great Transition | Scoop.it
While the optimism about the future of natural gas seems to be still prevalent, the data show that the gas bubble may be already bursting.
Willy De Backer's insight:

... and what will this mean for our global economy?

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US Energy: the New Reality

The trend of rising US dependence on imports of foreign oil and natural gas has been abruptly reversed, as a result of falling domestic demand for oil and increasing domestic supplies.
Willy De Backer's insight:

This Chatham House report paints a much more realistic picture of the US Energy 'Revolution' than the usual hype in the media.

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The Really, Really Big Picture

The Really, Really Big Picture | The Great Transition | Scoop.it

"Steadily rising energy costs and decreasing net energy yields will simply not be able to fund the future economic growth and consumptive lifestyles that developed nations are depending on (and that developing nations are aspiring to). In fact, the persistent global economic weakness we've been experiencing over the past years is an expected symptom of the throttling constraint decreasing net energy places on growth."

Willy De Backer's insight:

Chris Martenson's excellent analysis of why there is not going to be enough net energy for the economic growth we want.

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Stephane Bilodeau's curator insight, January 18, 2013 7:03 AM

"There has been a very strong and concerted public-relations effort to spin the recent shale energy plays of the U.S. as complete game-changers for the world energy outlook.  These efforts do not square up well with the data and are creating a vast misperception about the current risks and future opportunities among the general populace and energy organizations alike.  The world remains quite hopelessly addicted to petroleum, and the future will be shaped by scarcity – not abundance, as some have claimed.

 

If you care about the future of the economy, your standard of living (or that of your children), and/or your quality of life, you need to fully understand this relationship between growth and net energy. Your individual future (and our collective one) depends on it."

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Commission consults public on unconventional fossil fuels (e.g. shale gas) in Europe

"The European Commission is holding a public consultation on the future development of unconventional fossil fuels such as shale gas in Europe. All interested individuals, organisations and public authorities are welcome to share their views on the possible opportunities and challenges that may arise from the development of such projects and on the best ways to address the challenges identified so far."

Willy De Backer's insight:

Why is DG Environment and not DG Energy in charge? The environmental dangers of shale gas are not the only problem; the effects on the energy mix and climate change are at least as important. And what about the use of big money for investments which we will regret in less than ten years.

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US Shale Gas Won't Last Ten Years: Bill Powers

US Shale Gas Won't Last Ten Years: Bill Powers | The Great Transition | Scoop.it
The shale gas miracle is overhyped and bound to disappoint. That's what energy expert Bill Powers argues in his upcoming book.

 

Must-read for all those who still believe in Father Xmas, in this case the myth of abundant shale gas for more than 100 years.

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EU Commission study on shale gas raises serious doubts about European "golden age of gas"

EU Commission study on shale gas raises serious doubts about European "golden age of gas" | The Great Transition | Scoop.it

A new research report written by the Joint Research Centre of the EU Commission suggests that under a best case scenario, taking into account environmental considerations, future shale gas production in Europe could help the EU maintain its dependency on energy imports at around 50 % of its total energy needs. But the report also reveals the sometimes considerable uncertainty about recoverable volumes, technological developments, public acceptance and access to land and markets. 

 

This courageous JRC study will without doubt lead to furious reactions from the shale gas lobby.

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Czech Government Proposes Temporary Ban on Shale-Gas Exploration

The Czech Republic proposed to ban shale-gas exploration until at least mid-2014 as it prepares laws to regulate the technology’s effect on the environment.

 

After France and Bulgaria, the Czech Republic is the third EU country to impose a temporary moratorium on fracking.

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The 'Shale Gas Revolution': Developments and Changes

The 'shale gas revolution' in the United States created an oversupply of liquefied natural gas and downward pressure on gas prices across the globe. Disappointing outcomes have reduced the hype about the prospects for shale gas in Europe, and led ...

 

Excellent new report from Paul Stevens of Chatham House. One of the most important conclusions: shale gas does not substitute for coal but is a big danger to renewables.

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The Real Story Behind the Fracking Debate

The Real Story Behind the Fracking Debate | The Great Transition | Scoop.it

"Fracking is not good or bad: it is a process to increase the production of fossil fuels, primarily natural gas, from certain geological formations. But good or bad things can happen as a result of fracking, depending on how it is implemented, where it is pursued, the technologies used, and the actions taken to increase its benefits and reduce its impacts. And whether or not you support or oppose fracking depends on how those benefits and impacts are perceived, distributed, addressed, and valued -- and whether it is in your backyard.."

 

Good article in the Huffington Post on the US fracking debate.

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