Energy and Environment News

Energy and Environment News

June 25, 2015

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Energy Policy.  A group of President Obama’s closest foreign-policy advisers warned yesterday that they would oppose a nuclear agreement with Iran if tougher terms weren’t included in the final deal — including intrusive snap inspections of Iran’s nuclear and military sites, a resolution of questions surrounding secretly developed nuclear-weapons technologies, and a phased reduction of international sanctions on the Islamic Republic.  The group also advised the White House to make clear to Iran that the U.S. will use military force if needed.  WSJ

Energy Outlook.  The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) reports that declines in employment related to oil and natural gas extraction tend to lag price declines and continue to decline well after prices begin to rebound.  Using BLS data in relation to the oil price decline following the 2008 recession, EIA finds that 82% of the decline in jobs occurred after oil prices reached their lowest monthly level.  EIA

Energy Policy.  The U.S. oil industry is launching a campaign to win support in the 2016 elections for “pro-energy” policies — an agenda that is likely at odds with that of democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton.  Although industry representatives have said the campaign would “stay above partisanship,” they have voiced deep concerns recently about many policies supported by the current administration, including new regulations on ozone pollution and methane emissions.  FT

Oil.  Ahead of a possible nuclear deal with the west, executives from European oil majors met with Iranian officials in Tehran to discuss investing in the country’s energy industry — evidence of the growing interest among big companies in Iran, which boasts the third-largest oil and gas reserves.  Iran is eager to bring back major oil players, as it will require tens of billions of dollars of foreign investment to meet its goal of doubling production by the end of the decade.  FT

Keybridge Releases 2014 Annual Progress Report on McDonald’s-Alliance for a Healthier Generation Partnership on Clinton Global Initiative Commitment to Action

Keybridge Releases 2014 Annual Progress Report on McDonald’s-Alliance for a Healthier Generation Partnership on Clinton Global Initiative Commitment to Action

Keybridge prepared the first annual report on McDonald’s progress toward fulfilling its Commitment to Action to increase customers’ access to fruits, vegetables, water, and low-fat dairy products and to help families make more informed food choices. For more information about Keybridge, please contact us at info@keybridgedc.com.

Link: Executive Summary2014 Progress Report McDonald’s Alliance Partnership on CGI Commitment to Action

Energy and Environment News

Energy and Environment News

June 24, 2015

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Climate Change.  A peer-reviewed study funded by the U.S. Department of Energy finds that oil extraction in Canada produces greenhouse-gas emissions that are 20% higher on average than those produced from conventional U.S. crude.  The authors note that as oil-sands products become a larger fraction of the U.S. fuel mix over the next 15 years, the U.S. well-to-wheel emissions for gasoline and diesel production are likely to increase.  WSJ

Climate Change.  Eduardo Porter asserts in the NY Times that President Obama’s climate change strategy lacks strong analytical foundations and is driven more by hope than by science.  He cites findings from various environmental experts — from top organizations like Greenpeace to economists at the University of Chicago — to demonstrate that policymakers’ preferred methods of combatting climate change are not supported by current data.  NY Times

Energy Policy.  Germany is forgoing plans to raise emissions charges for older coal-fired power stations at the request of its power sector, which warns that any levy would result in the closure of mines and plants, and potentially collapse the industry.  The move illustrates the challenge Berlin faces as it attempts to meet its ambitious targets to combat climate change, while also safeguarding jobs.  FT

Energy Outlook.  Adie Tomer of the Brookings Institute explains that demand for gasoline in the U.S. is relatively inelastic, resulting in a close correlation between the retail price of gas and the amount of money that the average American family spends on gas relative to other household expenses.  He argues that because gasoline prices are likely to increase over the longer term, the U.S. needs to find alternatives to driving in order to “dull” the economic impact of rising gas prices on other areas of the economy.  Brookings

Energy and Environment News

Energy and Environment News

June 23, 2015

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Energy Policy.  Iranian and Western officials announced publicly for the first time that they are willing to extend the June 30 deadline to negotiate a final nuclear deal.  Recent talks have stalled due to disagreements over key details of the deal — particularly concerning the proposed inspection process; however, the negotiating parties have stated that a final agreement remains likely in the next couple of weeks.  WSJ

Climate Change.  According to a new report from a leading British medical journal, more people will be exposed to floods, droughts, heat waves, and other extreme weather associated with climate change over the next century than previously thought.   The report analyzes the health effects of recent episodes of severe weather that scientists have linked to climate change, and concludes that the exposure of people to extreme rainfall, drought, and heat exposure will more than quadruple, triple, and increase by a factor of 12, respectively, in the coming decades.  NY Times

Oil.  Russia overtook Saudi Arabia as China’s largest supplier of crude oil for the first time in May as Moscow continues to strengthen its ties with the east.  China is likely to become the world’s biggest importer of crude — a position previously held by the U.S. — and is expected to maintain high levels of Russian imports over the next several years as long-term crude supply contracts take effect.  FT

Energy Policy.  William Pentland asserts in Forbes that the law of Florida discriminates against solar power companies by prohibiting sales of electricity by anyone other than government-sanctioned utility companies, regardless of the technology used to generate power. He argues that this hurts consumers, and advocates for a constitutional amendment — proposed by the “Floridians for Solar Choice” — that would remove the legal prohibition on non-utility retail sales of electricity and open the door to competition and consumer choice.  Forbes

Energy and Environment News

Energy and Environment News

June 22, 2015

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Energy Outlook.  The International Energy Agency reports that worldwide consumer demand for energy has risen in 2015, largely due to low oil prices and economic growth.  The report forecasts that world demand for oil will increase 1.4 million barrels per day this year — an upward adjustment of 300,000 barrels compared with previous forecasts — but does not predict that the increased demand will yield a boost to prices.  WSJ

Energy Policy.  A recent report from the Obama administration finds that reductions to U.S. carbon emissions would give a boost to labor productivity, lower electricity demand, and help avoid damages from coastal storms and wildfires in coming decades.  The report uses federal data to lay out a trajectory of health and economic payoffs that the administration expects from its proposals to curb greenhouse gas emissions from trucks, power plants, landfills, and oil wells.  Bloomberg

Electricity.  John Kemp of Reuters writes that power grids throughout North America set new records for reliability last year despite concerns regarding extreme cold temperatures and physical and cyber attacks. Kemp explains that increased investment and attention to operational standards over the last decade are largely responsible for reliability improvements, while demand-side management improvements have also helped to reduce stress on the grid during critical times.  Reuters

Energy Policy.  U.S. officials are increasingly concerned about political fallout that may occur if Greece declares bankruptcy, particularly as this may allow Russia to gain influence over Greece and sow new divisions among America’s European allies.  Concerns were amplified following Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras’ visit to St. Petersburg late last week to discuss energy diplomacy, which affirmed Greece’s willingness to look to Moscow as disputes with its international creditors intensify.  FT