Tuesday, March 3, 2009

P46. Pick Points

Half-a-dozen or so stories of interest:

I watched a little of the demonstration outside the Capitol Power Plant this afternoon, in a line feed from the CapitolClimate Action site . There was not that much snow visible, just a little on the bushes, and everything was relatively peaceful. (About 7 inches fell apparently). There was some sort of march, but the video was live and without a commentator, so much of what I saw was very unscripted. Apparently some of the demonstrators came from a conference that was being held in town.

The first thing shown (at about 1:30 pm when I tuned in) was a group of demonstrators outside the CPP gates chanting, and being encouraged to do so by a man with an electronic bullhorn. The chants were along the lines of “no coal, no gas, no compromise.” You may remember from my note yesterday that the plant is fired with a mix of 65% natural gas, and 35% coal, so they obviously want to shut the plant down. How to provide for the energy needs of the Capitol and surroundings? The next chant was “Coal is over, coal is done, get your power from the sun!” Well for those not paying attention Washington is just coming out of a major snowstorm, so any solar panels would be covered with snow, as the bushes were behind the demonstrators. So sun would not be an option today – how about nuclear – no carbon dioxide – next chant “no coal, no gas, no nukes, no kidding”. I think no kidding is right, where are they going to get the power to supply heat and light to the east coast? Remember that it is very cold in the region at the moment, and there was no visible wind in the afternoon. James Hansen was there and the Congresswoman that represents DC in the House, and one of the Kennedys. I had other things to do, but it all seemed very low key in the time that I watched it. They are playing the highlights again at the website, and are promising to go back to Coal Mountain again.

Plans are moving in Iraq to restart a drilling program that will yield 60 wells a year at 5,000 barrels/day/well.
In 2008 Iraq produced 2 million b/d, which the ministry is eager to boost to 3 million b/d as soon as possible and to 4.4 million b/d within the next 4 years. Iraq wants to achieve 6 million b/d of production by 2013.

"The parties to the joint venture intend to invest a total of $400 million to enable [IOSC] to purchase and operate 12 new drilling rigs and for provision of logistical support and working capital in order to deliver state-of-the-art performance in its operations," MPC said. IOSC also wants to improve local Iraqi expertise and integrated drilling technology.
Iraq has had to redo its budget twice already, due to the falling price of oil, and thus is anxious to reinstate itself as a producer.

The transcript is out for the API telecon I participated in on Friday. The transcript can be downloaded here.

Those taking part included:
The Bear, The Absurd Report

Brian Westenhaus, New Energy and Fuel
Dave Summers, Bit Tooth Energy
Devil’s Advocate, Copious Dissent
Gail Tverberg, The Oil Drum

Geoff Styles, Energy Outlook

James Shott, Observations
Nate Hagens, The Oil Drum
Peter Carlock, OPNTALK
 (which has the transcript posted -
Stephen Rhodes, The Republican Temple who also has some video from the Capitol demonstration today.

Brian Westenhaus had a post on Friday about a new way of getting light into the photobioreactors for algae growth. Several folk had forwarded it to me for review. It is way of distributing the light that we looked at a couple of years ago but doesn’t really address a couple of the problems relating to the drop off in intensity with distance, though it helps get light to the bottom of deeper ponds. He also writes about the Petroalgae operation in Florida. This is getting closer to a target of 5,000 gallon/acre/year yield which is the target set as a break-even point for algae. (There are lots of caveats to that number). Biovenitas has more coverage over this past weekend, The potential for green energy technologies to provide jobs is becoming more of an issue and certainly when we talk of research projects it is something that is brought up in almost every discussion with potential outside partners.

OPEC is still pumping about 780,000 bd of oil above the targets they have earlier set, but are down to 25.62 mbd, which takes them to abot 81% of the targeted cuts. Venezuela would like the target to be enforced, and more cuts made to bring the price up to $70 a barrel. I think it will likely get there this summer anyway, though, as noted last week Secretary Chu is not as concerned with OPEC oil as he is with the longer-term issues of cutting energy demand and dealing with the climate issues of energy production
Pakistan approved a wind farm in Sindh. Power will be provided to Karachi and Hyderabad. The 50 MW wind facility may also be joined by a similar sized solar farm. Details of a wind survey around Pakistan are available.

More stories can be found at The Energy Bulletin and Drumbeat at The Oil Drum.

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