Friday, 26 May 2017

CHINA ACHIEVES A BREAKTHROUGH IN EXTRACTING METHANE FROM HYDRATES

China Claims Methane Hydrates Breakthrough May Lead To Global Energy RevolutionCNN Money, 20 May 2017
 China is talking up its achievement of mining flammable ice for the first time from underneath the South China Sea.
 Methane Hydrates: China’s Real South China Sea Goal?
 Estimates of the South China Sea’s methane hydrate potential now range as high as 150 billion cubic meters of natural gas equivalent. That’s sufficient to satisfy China’s entire equivalent oil consumption for 50 years.

The fuel-hungry country has been pursuing the energy source, located at the bottom of oceans and in polar regions, for nearly two decades. China’s minister of land and resources, Jiang Daming, said Thursday that the successful collection of the frozen fuel was “a major breakthrough that may lead to a global energy revolution,” according to state media.

Experts agree that flammable ice could be a game changer for the energy industry, similar to the U.S. shale boom. But they caution that big barriers — both technological and environmental — need to be cleared to build an industry around the frozen fuel, which is also known as gas hydrate.

China, the world’s largest energy consumer, isn’t the first country to make headway with flammable ice. Japan drilled into it in the Pacific and extracted gas in 2013 — and then did so again earlier this month. The U.S. government has its own long-running research program into the fuel.

The world’s resources of flammable ice — in which gas is stored in cages of water molecules — are vast. Gas hydrates are estimated to hold more carbon than all the world’s other fossil fuels combined, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

An image from Chinese state television shows gas extracted from flammable ice burning in the South China Sea.

And it’s densely packed: one cubic foot of flammable ice holds 164 cubic feet of regular natural gas, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

Chinese state news agency Xinhua says that makes the fuel a strong contender to replace regular oil and natural gas. But like any fossil fuel, flammable ice raises significant environmental concerns.

Experts worry about the release of methane, a superpotent greenhouse gas with 
25 times as much global warming potential as carbon dioxide. And although burning natural gas is cleaner than coal, it still creates carbon emissions.

The fuel source has a lot of potential in China, analysts at Morgan Stanley said Thursday, citing the country’s successful trial and government support to develop the industry.

But commercial production is unlikely in the next three years due to high costs, potential environmental concerns and technological barriers, the analysts said in a research note.

“If there is a real breakthrough,” they wrote, “it could be as significant as the shale revolution in the United States. Under such a bull case scenario, we’d expect a significant increase in offshore exploration and production activities.”

Thursday, 25 May 2017

HOLLYWOOD ATTEMPTS TO DEMONISE COAL

The following is from the Committee For A constructive Tomorrow (CFACT) and explains the latest disaster movie from Hollywood which is attempting to demonise coal.

When it comes to pushing radical environmentalism, no one does it with more vigour than Hollywood.

Such is the case with their latest gem, “From the Ashes,” which purports to showcase the evils of America’s use of coal to generate electricity.

As we’ve done in the past, CFACT sent in an undercover operative to a special sneak preview earlier this week to get the early scoop on how the filmmakers are trying to snooker the American public with yet another slick presentation of one-sided facts.

What our operative found was no surprise: A bunch of hype very short on substance.

The movie, produced by (appropriately named) “RadicalMedia,” is being distributed through National Geographic and makes no pretence of being even remotely unbiased.

During an “invite only” reception before the special movie screening, a prominent Sierra Club member was overheard saying there are roughly 350 U.S. Sierra Club members funded by the Bloomberg Foundation (the same Left-wing foundation that bankrolled this film) “who wake up every day with the sole purpose of shutting down coal mines.”

The film itself launched into a number of diatribes against coal use, all bordering on the preposterous:
Fortunately our operative informed us the film dragged on for about 75 minutes, which seemed to tax even this dedicated crowd of true believers’ attention spans. One suspects it will have even less success with general audiences during its upcoming limited release.

Wednesday, 24 May 2017

WINDPOWER MAKES 0% OF WORLD'S ENERGY

Here is the evidence. Try telling that to the climate alarmists and they will simply not accept it. The fact is that to the nearest whole number it is correct.

Tuesday, 23 May 2017

UK LABOUR PARTY'S MOST STUPID MANIFESTO PLEDGE - 60% ZERO CARBON ENERGY BY 2030

This pledge may have gone un-noticed in a manifesto full of nationalisation pledges and tax increases, but for those who consider its implications it is actually the nuttiest of all.  It may be that they meant to say electricity instead of energy. If so then they are extremely careless. In either case they are unelectable, and thankfully the polls currently show that to be the case.

Monday, 22 May 2017

HOW THE UK ENERGY REGULATOR WAS RENDERED TOOTHLESS

John Constable: How Ed Miliband Neutered UK Energy RegulatorGWPF Energy Comment, 16 May 2017

Dr John Constable: GWPF Energy Editor
 
There is likely to be increasing pressure to reform the gas and electricity regulator, Ofgem, which is widely held to have failed in the protection of consumers. This accusation is to a large degree both misguided and unjust. Ofgem is constrained by its Statutory Duties, which were revised by Ed Milliband in 2010 to put climate policy costs beyond criticism. It is this, as much as institutional lassitude, that accounts for it being so ineffective a consumer champion.

In the wake of concern about rising electricity retail prices to domestic households, the Conservative Party has suggested a price cap on Standard Variable Tariffs. It is fair to say that this policy has not been well received by commentators and economists, who with very good reason believe it likely to be counterproductive. Whether the voting public will be persuaded that a price cap is in their long-term interest remains to be seen, but it could well prove popular. – With a maladroit sense of timing that is typical of the hapless energy industry my own electricity and gas supplier has just sent me a letter explaining that due to price rises next year’s annual dual fuel bill is likely to be about 8% higher.

Doubtless many other households are receiving similar news, and perhaps thinking positively about Mrs May’s offer to stamp on rip-off tariffs.

One, more sophisticated, reaction to this sort of news is to blame the regulator, Ofgem. If the government needs to wade in to protect consumers, surely the regulator must have failed in its job. This is an understandable conclusion, but to a very significant degree it is unjust to Ofgem, which is itself tightly regulated by the legal definition of its Statutory Duties and powers. These are defined in the Gas Act 1986, the Electricity Act 1989, the Utilities Act 2000, the Competition Act 1998, the Enterprise Act 2002, the Business Protection from Misleading Marketing Regulations 2008 and the Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations 1999, and, crucially, in amendments to these acts. Perhaps the most important of these amendments occurred in the Energy Act of 2010, which originated under Ed Miliband when he was Secretary of State at the Department of Energy and Climate Change. Though a small change, it drew the regulator’s teeth.

The Utilities Act 2000 had described the overarching principal objective for energy regulation as 
the protection of the interests of existing and future consumers, wherever appropriate by promoting competition (for further details see this DECC analysis). This was a lucid and unconstricting brief. A determined regulator could range far and free in the pursuit of consumer welfare.

The 
Energy Act of 2010 amended this principal objective by defining “interests” thus in two separate paragraphs (16 (3) 1A and 17 (3) 1A referring to gas and electricity:

Those interests of existing and future consumers are their interests taken as a whole, including—
(a) their interests in the reduction of gas-supply/electricity supply emissions of targeted greenhouse gases; and

(b) their interests in the security of the supply of gas/electricity to them.

This change was of enormous importance, since an increasingly large part of the charges on the consumer were (and still are) the result of policy. In effect, the revision to Ofgem’s principal purpose made them unable to comment on the imposition of cost increases resulting from measures to mitigate climate change.

Since these coercive cost increases are invisible to the market and cannot be reduced by competition, there was no means other than the regulator, or the slow and uncertain cycles of electoral democracy, to expose them to criticism.

This is no trivial matter. Policies now account for about 17% of the price to domestic households, in other words about £26/MWh of a total price to household consumers of £154/MWh (see the Committee on Climate Change Energy Prices and Bills). Median annual domestic electricity consumption in the UK is approximately 3.5 MWhs per household, so this amounted to about £91 per household per year, or roughly £2.4 billion a year, assuming 26 million households, a sum that greatly exceeds the £1.5 billion a year rip-off that prompted Mrs May to suggest a price cap.

According to the government’s estimates, in the now discontinued Estimated Impacts, we can see that this problem is set to grow dramatically. In 2020 the domestic price impact will have in all probability doubled, to £52/MWh, or about £180 a year on the electricity bill, a nationwide cost of about £5 billion per year.
Constrained by its remit, as set out by Ed Milibands Energy Act of 2010, Ofgem is powerless to comment on these enormous impositions. In essence, by being compelled to have regard to the interests of future consumers in the light of climate change the regulator has been absorbed by government and, like the Committee on Climate Change, made a mere cog wheel in the policy delivery mechanism. Consequently, and with the sole exception of the National Audit Office, there is no statutory body that has any interest in holding the government to account on climate policy costs, and none that is exclusively focused on the energy sector.

Restoring Ofgem’s Statutory Duties to their earlier free-ranging state could yield enormous benefits for the consumer. Such a reform should also be supported by electricity retailers, who, for all their faults, are carrying the can for climate policy related price increases over which they have no control. By contrast, a ‘reform’ of Ofgem that further weakened an already crippled body would be a disaster for all concerned. 

Sunday, 21 May 2017

GERMAN GREEN PARTY FACING EXTINCTION FROM GOVERNMENT

Germany’s Grand Coalition Energy Experts Reject Greens’ Coal Exit PlansClean Energy Wire, 16 May 2017
 Energy experts of Germany’s grand coalition of conservatives (CDU/CSU) and Social Democrats (SPD) have rebuffed the Green Party’s plans for an accelerated coal exit.

“We cannot phase out both nuclear and coal-fired power production within 15 or 20 years,” conservative Thomas Bareiß said at a party debate hosted by utilities RWE and innogy. Bareiß argued that exiting coal “with a sledgehammer-approach” would “massively damage” Germany’s industrial capacity and undermine the “basis of our prosperity”.

The SPD’s Bernd Westphal said his party would put “no signature” under a hypothetical coalition treaty with the Greens that included an accelerated coal exit. Westphal said the energy transition affected “a very diverse array of interests” and limiting debate to climate protection was “wrong”.

The Green Party’s Julia Verlinden said accelerating Germany’s coal exit was “a red line” for her party as “there is simply no other way to meet our climate goals”. She rejected the other parties’ insistence on a market-based approach for exiting coal as “there is no market because carbon emission costs are not internalised”.

Verlinden added that a coal exit was inevitable and taking action now would “increase our flexibility and allow for better adaptation” by affected industries. In their draft election programme, the Greens envisage a coal exit by 2030.
 

Saturday, 20 May 2017

NO LET-UP IN THE FORWARD MARCH OF KING COAL

Further to yesterday's post, see what is going on in Pakistan. We are supposed to be saving the planet from catastrophic climate change while our competitors seem to be quite oblivious to the predicament - or is it that they believe it is nonsense, but still claim to believe, so they can get their hands on some of the climate fund that we have promised them. Rather like a young child's belief in the tooth fairy.

Chinese Firms To Invest $15bn In Pakistani Coal-Fired PowerPower Engineering International, 3 May 2017

Diarmaid Williams
Officials at the Pakistani water and power ministry have said Chinese companies are expected to spend around $15bn over the next 15 years to build close to a dozen coal-fired power plants of varying sizes around the country.



Reuters reports that Mohammed Younus Dagha, the former federal secretary for water and power, who became commerce secretary at the end of March, is emphasising that the coal plants are part of a larger plan.

That is the $54bn China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), which includes spending of about $33bn on a total of 19 energy projects, including coal-fired and renewable power plants, transmission lines, and other infrastructure.

“Hefty investment under the CPEC project has held out hopes of significantly spiking domestic power generation (by) around 6,000 MW by the end of 2018,” Dagha said.

Combined, the projects will eventually generate 16,000 MW of electricity, which the government says is urgently needed.

Coal power will, according to these projections, account for 75 per cent of the newly generated power, which the government says will be installed with the latest in pollution-minimizing equipment.


The same is true for India.

Coal To Remain India's Energy Mainstay for Next 30 Years: Policy PaperReuters, 16 May 2017

Coal will remain India's main energy source for the next three decades although its share will gradually fall as the country pushes renewable power generation, according to a government report seen by Reuters.

The country is the world's third-largest coal producer and the third-biggest greenhouse gas emitter. It depends on coal for about three-fifths of its energy needs and aims to double its output to 1.5 billion tonnes by 2020.

By 2047, however, coal's share of India's energy mix would shrink to 42-48 percent, from about 58 percent in 2015, the report, which has yet to be made public, showed.

"India would like to use its abundant coal reserves as it provides a cheap source of energy and ensures energy security as well," the report said.

It was written by Indian think tank NITI Aayog, which advises the government on policy issues and is chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and the Institute for Energy Economics Japan (IEEJ).


Friday, 19 May 2017

WESTERN NATIONS LOSING OUT AS CHINA TAKES OVER COAL POWER PROJECTS

Read the following piece and see how we in the west are handing over control of coal and its use in power plants to China. This is a massive financial loss, all in a futile attempt to control the climate.

China’s Energy Silk Road Based On Building Coal Power Far And WideChina Dialogue, 12 May 2017

Feng Hao
 
China was involved in 240 coal power projects in 65 of the Belt and Road countries between 2001 and 2016.

Officials and leaders from over 110 countries gathered in Beijing on May 14-15 for the first ever 
Belt and Road Forum. China’s ambitious attempt to boost economic growth across a vast area stretching from its southeast coast all the way to Africa is known as the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

Its two parts – a 
Silk Road Economic Belt and a Maritime Silk Road – are focused on channelling enormous investment in infrastructure to connect the region and to open new markets for Chinese products, services and capital.

But the BRI is also causing concern within China and internationally because Chinese companies are investing heavily in coal power in BRI countries. The fear is that China will help lock developing countries into coal-power assets that will last decades, damage people’s health, and contribute to climate change.

 


Investments on the up
The 
Global Environment Institute (GEI) has recently carried out a long term review of China’s involvement in coal power projects in 65 countries that are now participating in the Belt and Road Initiative.

GEI’s figures show that between 2001 and 2016 China was involved in 240 coal power projects in BRI countries, with a total generating capacity of 251 gigawatts. The top five countries for Chinese involvement were India, Indonesia, Mongolia, Vietnam and Turkey.

The GEI research also found that China’s involvement in coal power projects in BRI countries, which often takes the form of contracting and equipment supply, has been increasing overall, despite large year-to-year fluctuations…

Thursday, 18 May 2017

SPIN, DECEIT AND DOWNRIGHT LIES FROM THE MEDIA

This article looks at a piece in the Telegraph which attempts to put a positive spin on the change from centrally produced electricity from power stations to small, locally produced energy. The writer has gone beyond using the correct facts, which do not support the case and instead produced incorrect information in order to hoodwink the readers, who inevitably are unable to challenge what is presented. They get away with it time and time again.

Wednesday, 17 May 2017

SCRAPPING GREEN SUBSIDIES IS THE WAY TO REDUCE ENERGY BILLS - NOT PRICE CAPS

This article by Christopher Booker explains how the free market could be used to reduce our bills rather than a cap controlled by the government.

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

UK BUSINESSES TO BE HIT BY NEW WAY OF CHARGING USING SMART METERS

This article explains the latest way of extracting more money from the hapless businessman. How long before a similar scheme comes into play to hoodwink you and me? All in the name of "saving the planet". Maybe then we will see some people out in protest (with some greens among them).

Monday, 15 May 2017

THE DANGERS FACED BY CLIMATE SCIENTISTS FROM ECO-EXTREMISTS

This post serves to remind us just how dangerous some climate change extremists can be. I thank those courageous scientists who speak out with a message of common sense. If they were silenced we would soon find the extremists would push a lot more of their doctrinal beliefs on to us. 

Sunday, 14 May 2017

MIXED MESSAGES FROM THE TRUMP TEAM ON CLIMATE CHANGE

This article looks at an agreement that has been signed by Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, which appears to support the Paris climate agreement. This suggests that the President may be softening on his pledge to withdraw the USA from the Paris agreement. This would be a great pity and a lost opportunity to return to common sense on this issue.

Saturday, 13 May 2017

THE BENEFITS OF ARCTIC METHANE SEEPAGE

Yes, contrary to all the scare stories, methane gas escaping from the floor of the ocean may turn out to be beneficial according to this report. This is extraordinary and very encouraging news (which you will certainly not hear on the TV news).

Friday, 12 May 2017

GWPF PETITION TO SCRAP EU RENEWABLE ENERGY TARGETS

This link gives the details including a link to sign up. Please sign up and pass this on to others.

Thursday, 11 May 2017

AUSSIES RISKING THEIR ECONOMY TO (NOT) SAVE THE PLANET

This article draws attention to the dangerous policies on energy being rolled out in Australia. If they carry on increasing renewables (or "unreliables" as some people call them) then the economy is at risk. Over here in the UK we should be watching closely and learning the lessons. 

Wednesday, 10 May 2017

IVANKA TRUMP TO CARRY OUT REVIEW OF CLIMATE CHANGE FOR HER FATHER

This article gives the details. There has been a lot of speculation on whether President Trump will pull the USA out of the Paris climate agreement. We will have to keep guessing.

Tuesday, 9 May 2017

THE MYTH THAT RENEWABLES COMPETE WITH FOSSIL FUELS LAID BARE

Here is an excellent letter to the Telegraph from Paul Homewood. So good that it would be worth adapting it to send in to other papers to inform the public of the reality of the situation.

Monday, 8 May 2017

OIL PRICE KEEPS DROPPING AS US SHALE KEEPS GROWING

This report looks at the reason as well as the impact of falling oil prices. This is the complete opposite of the prediction of the UK government and makes nonsense of their energy policy though they certainly won't admit it.  Time for our politicians to hold the government to account.

Sunday, 7 May 2017

TAKING A BALANCED VIEW OF POLLUTION

This article focuses on what should be the government's response to the never-ending calls by environmental campaigners for removing all forms of "pollution" however small. In a rational world they should be looking at real risks and their management rather than hypothetical hazards.  Balancing risks and benefits would be even better. 

Saturday, 6 May 2017

NEW STUDY REVEALS THE WARMING PAUSE IS REAL

This piece looks at the latest study which confirms the reality of the global warming pause. It is the climate alarmists who are in denial now as they try desperately to find ways of making this pause disappear.

Friday, 5 May 2017

NEW YORK TIMES CAUSES HYSTERIA BY PUBLISHING ARTICLE MILDLY SCEPTICAL OF CLIMATE CHANGE

This article looks at the hysterical reaction to a mainstream USA newspaper publishing something even mildly critical of the alarmist theory of man made climate change. If you read some of the critical letters you cannot fail to see the horror of those who appear to regard climate change as a sort of religious text that simply is beyond criticism, or even mild questioning.  This is what makes the ordinary person take a closer look at what lies behind the alarmist headlines. As Shakespeare once wrote - they protest too much!

Thursday, 4 May 2017

A VERY IGNORANT CLIMATE PROFESSOR

This article refers to a lecture given in a local science café attended by the writer. He describes how the professor seemed to have a blinkered approach and refused to discuss the many awkward questions from his audience. What a disaster.

Tuesday, 2 May 2017

ENERGY POLICY IN TRUMP'S FIRST 100 DAYS


Competitive Enterprise Institute, 25 April 2017

Marlo Lewis Jr
 
April 29th will mark the end of President Trump’s first 100 days in office. He has taken several significant actions in energy and climate policy, and seems to be on a roll. What really matters, of course, is how much he accomplishes during the next two to four years, and how much of his energy agenda endures after that.

Image result for Trump 100 days

E&E Daily reporter Arianna Skibell reminds us that the 100-day benchmark originated with President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, who pushed Congress to enact 15 major pieces of legislation—the foundation of what became the New Deal—within 100 days of taking office. The conditions for that achievement—a highly visible domestic crisis and large congressional majorities favoring the president’s agenda—have no analogue today. Journalists and pundits persist in comparing presidents based on their first hundred days partly because of the influence of pro-New Deal historians, who popularized that metric to ensure that F.D.R.’s early legislative accomplishments would always seem especially impressive.

That said, President Trump has shown himself to be a high achiever in politics no less than in business. According to the White House press office, Trump has: 

  • Worked with Congress to enact more legislation and signed more executive orders in his first hundred days than any president in a half century;
  •  
  • Worked with Congress to enact 28 pieces of legislation, more than any other president since Truman;
  •  
  • Signed 25 executive orders, the most of any first 100 days in over 50 years (will be over 30 by day 100); and
  •  
  • Removed more job-killing regulations through legislation than any president in U.S. history.

On energy and climate policy, Trump has taken big steps to change the direction of the country. His March 28th Energy Independence Executive Order

  • Directs the Environmental Protection Agency to review and, if appropriate, suspend, revise, or rescind the Clean Power Plan and related rulemakings;
  •  
  • Disbands the Obama administration’s Interagency Working Group on the Social Cost of Carbon;
  •  
  • Lifts the Obama administration’s coal leasing moratorium on federal lands;
  •  
  • Directs the Department of Interior to review, and if appropriate, suspend, revise, or rescind Obama administration regulations restricting oil and gas exploration on federal lands;
  •  
  • Overturns Obama’s climate policy executive orders; and,
  •  
  • Directs executive agencies to “review all existing regulations, orders, guidance documents, policies, and any other similar agency actions ... that potentially burden the development or use of domestically produced energy resources, with particular attention to oil, natural gas, coal, and nuclear energy resources.” 
In addition, Trump approved permits for the Dakota Access Pipeline and Keystone XL Pipeline, ending the Obama policy of inviting anti-growth activists to block and delay investment in critical energy infrastructure. He eliminated the Stream Protection Rule, which threatened the viability of Appalachian coal mining. He directed the EPA to reexamine its de-facto fuel economy standards for model years 2022-2025 motor vehicles, which auto companies warn would price low-income households out of the market for new cars. Trump also directed the EPA to review the Waters of the United States rule, which endangers property rights by expansively redefining “navigable waters of the United States” to include seasonal ponds unconnected by streams to navigable waters.

The one critical energy and climate issue on which Trump has not yet taken action is the Paris Climate Agreement. As my colleague Chris Horner and I discussed previously:

Withdrawing the United States from this treaty would put a stop to Obama’s attempted end-run around the constitutional treaty process, and ensure that elections, not U.N.-organized, political pressure campaigns, determine the direction of U.S. domestic economic and energy policy. If President Trump fails to do this, domestic and foreign opponents of Trump’s energy policies and possibly activist courts can continue to invoke this “international commitment,” and any future U.S. administration will have free rein to pick up where Obama left off.  

President Trump’s energy and climate record is one of solid achievement so far. However, until Trump cancels America’s participation, the Paris Agreement will provide the framework for global political pressure campaigns directed against Trump’s pro-growth energy agenda and legal pretexts for rebooting the EPA as the nation’s unlawful climate legislator.

TRUMP TO MAKE BIG DECISION ON PARIS CLIMATE DEAL


Press Trust of India, 30 April 2017

President Donald Trump has promised to make a “big decision” on the “one-sided” Paris climate deal soon as he alleged that the US is being unfairly targeted by asking to pay money while major polluting nations like Russia, China and India are contributing nothing.

Trump-April
President Donald Trump marked his 100th day in office in a speech in Pennsylvania by  promising to make a “big decision” on the “one-sided” Paris climate deal in the next two weeks – full speech here

In a campaign-style rally in Pennsylvania, a state that helped tip the election in his favor, Trump said the Paris Agreement on Climate Change is “one sided.”

“I will be making a big decision on the Paris accord over the next two weeks and we will see what happens,” he said in his speech to mark the first 100 days of his presidency.

“…like the one-sided Paris climate accord. Where the US pays billions of dollars (for the Paris Climate Accord) while China, Russia, and India have contributed (to pollution) and will contribute nothing,” Trump alleged as the audience booed to the Paris Agreement.

The Paris climate deal within the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change was signed in 2015 by 194 countries and ratified by 143. It aims to hold the increase in average global temperature to below 2 degrees above pre-industrial level by reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Trump claimed that it is estimated that for compliance with the agreement could ultimately shrink Americas GDP by USD 2.5 trillion over a 10-year period.

“That means factories and plants closing all over our country,” he said and alleged that the Washington’s ‘dishonest media’ would not report because it is is part of the problem.

“Their priorities are not my priorities, and they are not your priorities, believe me,” he said.

“They are all part of a broken system that has profited from this global theft and plunder of American wealth at the expense of the American worker. We are not going to let other countries take advantage of us anymore because, from now on, it is going to be America first,” Trump said.

Monday, 1 May 2017

SMART METERS MAY ALL HAVE TO BE REPLACED!

This article explains how all the smart meters issued so far may turn out to be too dumb to be of any use. You really could not make this up, but read the link to see what is happening.

Sunday, 30 April 2017

UK MEP'S CALL FOR TRUMP TO DUMP THE PARIS CLIMATE DEAL

This piece sets out a letter signed by 20 MEP's calling for President Trump to take the USA out of the Paris Climate Agreement. We should be thankful that at last some MEP's are prepared to stand up and be counted, even though they are a very small minority and will not be able to affect EU policy.

Saturday, 29 April 2017

THE SO-CALLED MARCH FOR SCIENCE BY THE LEFT-WING RABBLE

A report from CFact.

There they were in steady rain, tens of thousands of largely left-wing protestors, activists, and yes, probably a few actual scientists mixed in here or there, all gathered for a so-called “March for Science” in the USA capital.

Not surprisingly, the march surely wasn’t about that. If anything, it was a “March for Silence” on real climate facts, and a rain-soaked but well-publicized call to keep the federal dollars rolling, as long as they keep going in the wrong direction.

The event, held not coincidentally on Earth Day 2017, started with a mega-rally at the foot of the Washington Monument. Then, after about four hours of mostly political speeches (and some music), the marchers slogged their way up soggy Constitution Avenue to Capitol Hill where everyone quickly dispersed to find someplace to dry off.

There were signs that actually had something to do with science. Some talked about vaccines and cancer research, a few talked about marine conservation, and others just extolled the general virtues of progress. Hey, who can be against the end of Polio and Small Pox?

But it didn’t take much searching to find the overwhelming message of the marchers: (1) Anti-Trump (2) Anti-budget cutting and (3) Anti-Climate Deniers.

One marcher was holding a sign denouncing fascism but declined to be interviewed on camera because she said she was a government employee.

Another said that even if NASA satellites show no significant warming over the last 20 years, she wouldn’t give up her belief in catastrophic global warming … well, just because.
Indeed, as we anticipated in a pre-march column published in Investor’s Business Daily, this “March for Science” was much more about venting against any potential rollback of Obama-era climate regulations and hysteria, than it was about advocating for genuine scientific inquiry.
To see more of CFACT’s coverage of the march, check out my colleague Marc Morano’s humorous wrap-up over at Climate Depot. He had wall-to-wall coverage of the march.
And to think, hundreds of thousands more are expected this coming Saturday in D.C. for the even more radical People’s Climate March. At least the forecast is drier.

Friday, 28 April 2017

SEA ICE OFF NEWFOUNDLAND THICKEST IN LIVING MEMORY

This article gives the background to the headline. What is self-evident is that the climate is variable and extreme conditions are quite a common occurrence. Climate alarmists try to create a drama out of every extreme that comes along.

Thursday, 27 April 2017

CONSERVATIVES CUT FOREIGN OFFICE "CLIMATE STAFF" NUMBERS BY 50%

Here is the detail of this good news story. Let's hope that if they win the current election they will go even further and end this madness. We simply cannot afford to employ all these people when the country is in so much debt. I bet the majority of voters have no idea that we employ all these "climate staff" in the first place.

Wednesday, 26 April 2017

EU POLICY - IF THE SCIENCE GOES AGAINST POLICY, IGNORE THE SCIENCE

That would seem to be the stance according to this article recently published in the Times. Now they have been exposed ignoring scientific research in one area why should we trust them in other areas such as climate change. A good job we are leaving and a pity we can't leave more quickly.

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

CANADIAN COURT SAYS CLIMATE SCIENTIST WAS NOT DEFAMED

This article explains the background to the case. It looks like a good day for press freedom and freedom of speech. Sometimes, as in this case, judges can get it wrong. Mark Steyn must be pleased to see this.

Monday, 24 April 2017

WISHFUL THINKING BY LEADING UN CLIMATE ALARMIST

Here is a laughable piece of nonsense about an initiative by Christiana Figueres, a leading figure in the UN. I draw it to your attention to demonstrate the feeble arguments being made to bolster the flagging climate alarmists argument. Here is a short extract:

"During the conference, Figueres reiterated the “clear parallel” between progress on gender equality and on climate change over the last six years. She noted evidence suggests that a greater presence of women in the boardroom and in senior leadership roles can help increase the corporate focus on climate change, and emphasized that the UNFCCC has recognized the important role of women in addressing climate change through its ‘Momentum for Change: Women for Results’ initiative. The ‘Two Degrees of Change’ initiative aims to encourage women to raise climate issues with their company boards and to call on companies and investors to act on climate change".

So what is Figueres saying - that women are more likely to buy into the climate alarmist argument?  She has put forward no evidence for this. She simply trots it out as a fact and then assumes the rest of her ideas as following on from this unproven fact. The women she meets are probably all on her wavelength, or, more likely too polite to argue with her, or too in awe of her status to challenge her. But, out in the real world she would find there are plenty of women who are just as sceptical as a good deal of men.


Sunday, 23 April 2017

AS THE CO2 CUTS START TO BITE WE WILL SOON REGRET THE CLIMATE CHANGE ACT

This piece discusses the proposition that cutting CO2 emissions is a "win-win" for both the climate and the economy. This is often put forward by alarmists who want to win over those who are put off by the argument that  cutting CO2 is costly and will make us less competitive.  Unfortunately for alarmists that argument is right, though of course it is possible to both cut emissions and become more competitive by replacing coal with cheap gas, but that was just a lucky coincidence. Here is one quote from the article:

"The UK (in common with other industrialised countries) has continued to lose manufacturing jobs. Those jobs, as is well known, are now being done in China and other emerging economies, but Brits still consume the products. In other words, no matter how good the country’s performance may look on paper, global carbon dioxide emissions continue to rise."

So we shouldn't kid ourselves that if we continue to make cuts we will continue to grow the economy. Anyone should see that cutting will get ever harder and more costly as more and more industries close due to adverse energy costs. More and more imports will be needed. It is not "win-win", but more like "lose-lose"!

Saturday, 22 April 2017

HERE'S A PEAK AT THE ESTABLISHMENT SUPPORTING CLIMATE ALARMISM

This article looks at the enormous climate alarmist establishment. But we should not be too dismayed by it as it is propping up a house of cards. We are lucky if we live in democracies where there is the freedom to put over alternative views. Despite the way that climate alarmism has become so dominant there is still a great deal of scepticism out there and for good reason. Here in the UK we have Lord Lawson and his Global Warming Policy Foundation which has become increasingly influential. Also Paul Homewood's blog Not a Lot Of People Know That which continually exposes the lies and exaggeration that are being put out. Without the internet things would be a lot worse.

Friday, 21 April 2017

NEW RESEARCH SAYS MEDIEVAL WARM PERIOD WAS AS WARM AS THE PRESENT

This article highlights the new research. What it means is that we still underestimate natural variability and until we understand that we are unable to say whether man's contribution is important or trivial. To say anything different is no more than guesswork.

Thursday, 20 April 2017

YET ANOTHER PREDICTION OF THE "END OF OIL"

This piece looks at the latest attempt to predict the "end of oil". Like all the previous ones it is likely to be premature. It is similar to all those religious fundamentalists who predict the "end of the world".

Wednesday, 19 April 2017

WHITE HOUSE FLOATS EXCUSES TO BREAK TRUMP PROMISE TO CANCEL PARIS CLIMATE TREATY

This article looks at the good reasons why President Trump should keep his election promise to quit the Paris Treaty and explains why some in the White House want him to stay in it. Shame on them!

Tuesday, 18 April 2017

EUROPE TO HAVE A LATE COLD SNAP

This piece tells us that central Europe is going to have a late cold spell due to winds coming down from the Arctic. This was the opposite of what was being forecast a few weeks ago.

Monday, 17 April 2017

MATT RIDLEY EXPOSES THE GREEN ACTIVISTS PLANS AND FAILURES

Matt Ridley's article explains how the ban on neonicotinoids has been a failure like so many other attempts by green activists. He looks at the activists play plan to see how they promote their dubious causes, and very clever it is too.

Sunday, 16 April 2017

SCOTT PRUITT CALLS FOR USA TO EXIT PARIS CLIMATE AGREEMENT

Date: 14/04/17

  • The Washington Post

President Trump’s top environment official called for an “exit” from the historic Paris agreement Thursday, the first time such a high-ranking administration official has so explicitly disavowed the agreement endorsed by nearly 200 countries to fight climate change.

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt, left, shakes hands with coal miners during a visit to Consol Pennsylvania Coal Company’s Harvey Mine in Sycamore, Pa., on April 13. (Gene J. Puskar/AP)

It seems that the doubts expressed a few days ago were wrong. The USA may yet lead the world back to sanity on the great CO2 scam that has enveloped it.

Speaking with “Fox Friends,” Pruitt commented, “Paris is something that we need to really look at closely. It’s something we need to exit in my opinion.”
“It’s a bad deal for America,” Pruitt continued. “It was an America second, third, or fourth kind of approach. China and India had no obligations under the agreement until 2030. We front-loaded all of our costs.”
Pruitt had called the Paris accord a “bad deal” in the past but does not appear to have previously gone so far as to call for the United States to withdraw.
The Trump administration has previously said it is currently reviewing its position on climate change and energy policy and remains noncommittal, for now, on whether it will follow through on the president’s campaign pledge to “cancel” the 2015 Paris climate agreement.
“You might’ve read in the media that there was much discussion about U.S. energy policy and the fact that we’re undergoing a review of many of those policies,” Energy Secretary Rick Perry said in Texas on Thursday, according to prepared remarks. “It’s true, we are and it’s the right thing to do.”
Amid this uncertainty, the statement aligns Pruitt with a more hard-line approach held by some in the Trump administration, rather than the more moderate take of Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who had said in his confirmation hearing that the U.S. should have a “seat at the table” in the Paris negotiations.
Tillerson’s former company, the oil giant ExxonMobil, has also supported the Paris accord, and in late March wrote a letter to the White House reiterating its view that “the United States is well positioned to compete within the framework of the Paris agreement, with abundant low-carbon resources such as natural gas, and innovative private industries, including the oil, gas, and petrochemical sectors.”

Saturday, 15 April 2017

NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE DOES CLIMATE CHANGE SCARE SERIES

The National Geographic Magazine are no doubt hoping that their  series of articles highlighting the supposedly "scary" aspects of climate change will attract extra readers. In fact these scares are false and can easily be debunked as shown in these excellent blogs by Paul Homewood.

Friday, 14 April 2017

PARIS CLIMATE ACCORD TURNS INTO A HOUSE OF CARDS

Paris Climate Accord Is A Dead Deal Walking As $100 Billion Climate Fund DisappearsThe American Interest, 11 April 2017
 Shocking news—the magic $100 billion climate fund appears not to be taking shape! Even optimistic estimates sat the fund is $40 billion short, and developing countries say that understates the problem.

The 
Financial Times:
 
Climate ministers from Europe, India, Brazil and South Africa have gone to Beijing in recent weeks, hoping to sustain momentum from the Paris talks despite the Trump administration’s dismantling of US regulations meant to limit American emissions.
 But discussions have quickly run up against the issue of financing.  “Developed countries have not met their commitments. In their reports a lot of their commitment is in the form of development aid. That doesn’t meet the commitment to contribute to new funds,” China’s top climate change negotiator, Xie Zhenhua, told a briefing on Tuesday. “A lot of countries don’t want to chip in. I said to the European minister: that’s your problem as developed countries. It’s your responsibility to work together and sort it out.”

First world donors have been busily relabeling other foreign aid as contributions to the climate kitty. For developing countries, this is a cheat — they expect $100 billion in new money.

Or, to put it more accurately, they are not nearly stupid and naive enough to believe the lies Western diplomats tell when trying to bamboozle naive green voters at home that they are “Doing Something” about climate change. So they don’t really expect all that money, but hope to use these commitments to pry 
something out of the West. Also, since the West will certainly default on these bogus commitments, developing countries have all the justification they need to blow off their own commitments when the time comes.

This, one notes, is the house of cards that the last Administration claimed was a big piece of its legacy.

Thursday, 13 April 2017

AIR POLLUTION NOT TO BLAME FOR THOUSANDS OF DEATHS

This article exposes the fraudulent claims that air pollution is a major cause of death in modern cities.

Ross McKitrick, a University of Guelph economist, has taken a close look at the usefulness of the computer methods producing these smog death figures. First he took Toronto’s computer model and gave it data from the 1960s, when air pollution was noticeably worse than today. Back-testing is a common way to judge a computer model’s reliability. If it cannot explain what has already happened, then it’s usefulness in explaining the future is highly suspect.
The output was nonsense. In February 1965, for instance, the computer model claimed more people died from air pollution than died in the real world from all causes.
“The results I got suggest the models are implausible,” McKitrick told me. “They’re attributing over 100 percent of all deaths to air pollution. It just doesn’t make sense.”
Given the obvious flaws in existing computer models, McKitrick created his own simulation. With two Scottish academics he gathered 20 years of data from five Canadian cities – a far larger data set than used by the Ontario Medical Association – and performed a more sophisticated computer test. These results show air pollution to be almost entirely irrelevant to hospital admissions or death.

According to McKitrick, even if all forms of air pollution miraculously disappeared from Ontario over night, there would be no noticeable decline in the death rate. Claims of a massive death toll do not stand up to scrutiny.

Wednesday, 12 April 2017

SOUTH AUSTRALIA DEMOLISHES ITS LAST COAL FIRED POWER STATION

Obsessed by ideas of cutting CO2 emissions, South Australia's government is the test bed for what happens when you rely too much on renewable energy. This is the answer. 

Tuesday, 11 April 2017

US COURT TO DECIDE ON CLIMATE REGULATION ROLL BACK

This piece explains. It seems the president is having to fight in the courts to get most of his policies through. This is the strength of democratic nations which have so many checks and balances. It is also a frustration when voters vote for change and it gets blocked.

Monday, 10 April 2017

DOUBTS OVER SCOTT PRUITT'S WILLINGNESS TO DRAIN THE SWAMP APPEARING

Scott Pruitt is the man the president has put in charge of the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) and This article looks at the actions of Scott Pruitt and suggests that he has become rather faint-hearted since his appointment and he is not wanting to rock the climate boat and be labelled an "extremist". This is all rather worrying, if true.

Sunday, 9 April 2017

CHRISTOPHER BOOKER LARGE MAIL PIECE ON GREEN DISASTERS

This piece by Booker is a tour-de-force on the government's "green" policies, including the latest about turn on diesel cars. It's a really big piece in the print copy, though not so easy to find on line.

Saturday, 8 April 2017

IS THE UK READY TO RENEGE ON EU CLIMATE TARGETS?

This article suggests that they are. Just one more benefit of brexit, giving the UK the flexibility to gain a competitive edge over our former EU partners. Competition is what drives the world and by competing, the nations become leaner and fitter. The EU has lead to complacent uncompetitive nations. If the UK makes a big success over brexit this will make it hard for the remaining nations to keep the EU going, as others will try to emulate the UK. 

Friday, 7 April 2017

ARCTIC OF THE 1930s AND 1940s JUST AS WARM AS TODAY

This article looks at the natural influences on the Arctic which seem to be able to account for most of the changes that have taken place.

Thursday, 6 April 2017

SMART METERS - ADVERTISING WATCH DOG RULING ANNOUNCED

Regular readers may remember my article on smart meters a few weeks ago. In it I referred to a series of adverts on TV which proclaimed how accurate they were. Other articles such as this one and this one add to the picture. As a result I decided to complain to the ASA (Advertising Standards Authority) which is supposed to regulate adverts to ensure they are honest.

The essence of my complaint was that the smart meter ads focused on the accuracy of smart meters; however recent studies and complaints from the public have shown that the meters are unreliable and can give wildly inaccurate readings.

I have just received their response, which reads:

"We have carefully considered the points you raised but have decided that the advertising rules have not been broken on this occasion and we won't be taking further action on your complaint. This is because we consider that the ad is likely to be interpreted as simply highlighting the perceived benefits of the smart meter (in giving up-to-date usage figures via a device that is more accessible and avoid being charged estimated bills and consequently avoid the need to submit estimated readings or wait for remuneration). We acknowledge that smart meters may not be seen as beneficial to all, and that some customers may have not had a good experience with their smart meters so far. However we consider that this is a matter of individual customer experience, and the ad itself is unlikely to exaggerate the benefits of smart meters. We therefore consider that the ad is unlikely to materially mislead customers"

You will note that they have not specifically addressed my complaint that they highlighted the accuracy of the smart meters knowing that there were serious doubts over their accuracy which even their own spokesmen acknowledged.

I have appealed the ruling as follows:

Dear Ms Marchant,
Thank you for your email detailing the outcome of my complaint. I have read it carefully and do not believe it has addressed the actual point of my complaint which was that the advertisers highlighted one particular attribute of their product - that they were very accurate. They did so knowing that their product was in fact unreliable.
Here http://www.dailymail.co.uk/money/bills/article-4291166/Not-smart-New-energy-meters-won-t-work-1-3-homes.html is an article which gives evidence to support my complaint. Below are relevant excerpts from the article.
"An industry insider admitted to Money Mail that suppliers are struggling to meet the deadline because smart meter technology isn't advanced enough.
The industry is frantically working to improve the technology, but we don't yet have solutions for all the problems. We need more time. By rushing, mistakes will happen."
In your ruling you say how you "consider that the ad is likely to be interpreted", but my complaint is specifically about the claim of accuracy. It is on that point that I believe the ad fails the objective test of not misleading the public.
Please will you address this point specifically in the light of the evidence.
Yours sincerely,
Derek Tipp

Wednesday, 5 April 2017

LISTEN TO THE LATEST INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON CLIMATE CHANGE

This post includes a link to the conference itself for those who wish to listen to the various contributions. In particular the excellent speech by Roger Helmer MEP is set out in full. Well worth a look, it is good to see this conference becoming mainstream. 

Tuesday, 4 April 2017

ROY SPENCER GIVES A BALANCED VIEW ON THE GW DEBATE

Roy Spencer seems to me to be a very sensible and level-headed person who weighs things up in a balanced way. His latest blog piece is very much in that mould. Roy and his colleague John Christy are very much in the front line of climate research and their data from Satellite measurements of temperature have formed their view that man is not likely to be causing serious climate change by emitting CO2. If it were not for people like Roy, the catastrophic view of climate change would be much harder to refute. I salute their courage.

Monday, 3 April 2017

STANDING UP FOR FREE SPEECH IN SCIENCE AND JOURNALISM

Here is a great article that encapsulates the bed-rock of what a democracy should be. If we depart from these principles then we are on the slippery slope to a different form of government; not one that most of us would want to live in. Below is a short extract to give a flavour of the article.

" Science has a particular disdain for authority, as does journalism. It’s a real thing not to be paid lip-service to by a committee as they hand down judgement. We are not talking about journalists questioning if carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas, but about views on climate trends, frequency of extreme events, climate sensitivity. Views on these are varied, each justifiable, yet are often subject to complaints to press regulators. The fact that so many complaints fail shows how many do not understand journalism."

Sunday, 2 April 2017

HOW TO DEAL WITH THE "YOU'RE NOT AN EXPERT" RETORT ON CLIMATE CHANGE

Those who have swallowed the idea that we are about to experience dangerous climate change often use the retort "you're not an expert" and therefore should not make comments on it.

This article discusses this proposition and concludes that the ramifications of climate change policies are subjects that affect all of us and so we have as much right to make comment on it as we have to question any other aspects of policy. Quite right! 

Saturday, 1 April 2017

CALL IN THE RED TEAMS TO SAVE CLIMATE SCIENCE

This piece explains the issue of how climate science has been hijacked by politicians through grant funding to get the answers that suit their agenda. The Red Teams are groups of sceptical scientists who critically review the work and publish independent reports on it. The only question is - can we be sure no one has bribed the Red Team? 

Friday, 31 March 2017

BBC PUTTING OUT MORE GW PROPAGANDA

This piece gives the details. It's a pity that our BBC has lost its reputation for impartiality so easily over this issue. In the linked article there is strong evidence that the problems of Florida are not a result of any recent change in climate, but instead a long term result of the melting ice sheet that was laid over the north of America. 

Thursday, 30 March 2017

USA FRACKING PRODUCES PROFITABLE OIL AT $20 A BARREL

Shell’s New Permian Shale Play Profitable At $20 A BarrelOil Price, 24 March 2017

Rakesh Upadhyay
 
OPEC’s worries about the booming U.S. oil production have increased significantly with the big three oil companies’ interest in shale. 2017-19 is likely to see the largest increase in mega projects’ production in history.

Exxon Mobil Corp., Royal Dutch Shell Plc, and Chevron Corp., are planning $10 billion of investments in shale in 2017, a quantum jump compared to previous years. All the naysayers who doubted the longevity of the shale oil industry may have to modify their forecasts.

OPEC lost when they pumped at will as lower oil prices destroyed their finances, and now they are losing their hard-earned market share as a result of cutting production. Shell’s declaration that they can “make money in the Permian with oil at $40 a barrel, with new wells profitable at about $20 a barrel” is an indication that Shell is here to stay, whatever the price of oil.

The arrival of the big three oil companies with their loaded balance sheets is good news for the longevity of the shale industry.

The oil crash, which started in 2014, pushed more than 100 shale oil companies into bankruptcy, causing default on at least $70 billion of debt, according to The Economist. Even the ones that survived haven’t been very profitable, according to Bloomberg, which said that the top 60 listed E&P firms have “burned up cash for 34 of the last 40 quarters”.

Therefore, during the downturn, the smaller players had to slow down their operations, but this will not be the case with the big three.

“Big Oil is cash-flow positive, so they can take a longer-term view,’’ said Bryan Sheffield, the billionaire third-generation oilman who heads Parsley Energy Inc. “You’re going to see them investing more in shale,” reports Bloomberg.

The majors are attempting to further improve the economics of operation. Shell said that its cost per well has been reduced to $5.5 million, a 60 percent drop from 2013. Instead of drilling a single well per pad, which was the norm, Shell is now drilling five wells per pad, 20 feet apart, which saves money previously spent on moving rigs from site to site.

Shell is not the only one—Chevron expects its shale production to increase 30% every year for the next decade. Similarly, Exxon plans to allocate one-third of its drilling budget this year to shale, and it expects to quadruple its shale output by 2025.


A little known miner has gained access to the world’s most valuable copper land package which could soon turn this company into the next big thing for investors.
“The arrival of Big Oil is very significant for shale,” said Deborah Byers, U.S. energy leader at consultant Ernst & Young in Houston. “It marries a great geological resource with a very strong balance sheet.”  [...]

“2017-19 is likely to see the largest increase in mega projects’ production in history, as the record 2011-13 capex commitment yields fruit,” the U.S. investment bank said in a research note on Tuesday, reports Reuters.


So much for the end of fossil fuels!

Wednesday, 29 March 2017

CHINA TO MOVE SOME MANUFACTURING TO THE USA

Cheap Energy & New Technology: China Sees A Manufacturing Future — In AmericaThe Wall Street Journal, 21 March 2017

Andrew Browne
 
DONGGUAN, China—Glen Lin is struggling to keep his shoe company competitive on the world’s factory floor in southern China. Wages are shooting up 15% each year. Taxes are high. Shipping is exorbitant, and slow. So, as fast as he can he’s automating production, while planning an escape to his largest market—the U.S.

The vice general manager of Dongguan Winwin Industrial, a Taiwan-owned company, is scouting for a location in America to move his newest machinery that turns out high-quality sneakers and casual shoes. Most likely, he’ll end up near one of his main customers: Skechers, based in California, Crocs in Colorado, or Nike in Portland, Ore

In global manufacturing, fortunes are starting to shift in America’s favour.
That’s despite Donald Trump’s angry election rhetoric about China “raping” the U.S., and his threats to forcibly bring home manufacturing jobs by slapping across-the-board tariffs of 45% on Chinese imports.

The trends were clear well before Mr. Trump started rallying his blue-collar base with alarmist messages of protectionism. In fact, China’s trade challenge peaked years ago: Exports to the U.S. surged in the immediate aftermath of the country joining the World Trade Organization in 2001, throwing several million U.S. assembly workers out of a job, but they have since flattened out.

Nowadays, the exit of U.S. factory jobs from the country is roughly matched by posts coming in, according to the nonprofit Reshoring Initiative, which encourages companies to bring production back to the U.S.

Job-creating investment from China is booming in particular. Last year, it tripled to $45.6 billion from a year earlier, according to the Rhodium Group.

Chinese social-media sites were abuzz last year when the auto-glass tycoon Cao Dewang announced he was moving part of his production empire to Ohio. Some commentators denounced him for “running away.” He insisted he could make more money producing for the U.S. market from Ohio than China.

Although U.S. wages are still higher than those in China, the gap is rapidly narrowing. Andy Gu, vice president of international business for Midea, a massive home-appliance maker also based in southern China, says a competent engineer now demands up to $50,000 a year. Ordinary workers get about $600 a month, with food and lodging on top.

Moreover, industrial land in the U.S. is often cheaper than in Chinese coastal cities. The shale-gas revolution has dramatically lowered U.S. energy costs.
But the real key is technology: Advanced manufacturing is leveling the playing field.

Tuesday, 28 March 2017

UK'S LARGEST UNDEVELOPED OIL FIELD DISCOVERED OFF THE SCOTTISH COAST

Hurricane Energy has made a further oil discovery west of the Shetland Islands days after Royal Dutch Shell and BP won exploration licences in an area the UK is counting on to breathe new life into its struggling oil and gas industry. The latest find adds to a series of successful wells drilled by Hurricane in a geological formation that analysts say looks likely to be the biggest new oil discovery beneath UK waters this century. Hurricane is expected to announce that initial data from its Halifax well indicates the presence of a 1km-deep oil column and that, crucially, it appears to be part of “a single large hydrocarbon accumulation” connected to the company’s adjacent Lancaster field. This would increase confidence behind the London-listed explorer’s claim to be sitting on the largest undeveloped discovery on the UK continental shelf and aid efforts to attract investment in the field from international oil majors.