Morning Volt for 05/15/2017

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Morning Volt

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As Venezuela’s Default Risk Rises, Battle Heats Up for Control of Citgo


Dozens of companies are lining up with claims on the one big pot of money remaining if Venezuela defaults on its debts: the assets of state-owned oil refiner Citgo Holdings.

Maryland Approves Two Offshore Wind Projects

Krysti Shallenberger, Utility Dive

The Maryland Public Service Commission awarded offshore renewable energy credits to two offshore wind projects after attaching 30 conditions. The offshore wind projects represent a combined capacity of 368 MW and could yield $1.8 billion in in-state spending, according to a press release, while bringing nearly 9,700 indirect and direct jobs.

Trump Breathes New Life Into Paris Climate Change Accord

T. Casey, CleanTechnica

Trump Secretary of State Rex Tillerson just signed a binding multinational agreement that could force US to stay in Paris climate change accord.

Oil Jumps After Saudis, Russia Say Cuts Through March 2018


Saudi Arabia and Russia have agreed that oil output cuts need to be extended until March 2018. Oil prices jumped by over 1.5 percent on Monday after the Saudi Arabian and Russian energy ministers said in a joint statement that an OPEC-led crude production cut would be extended from the middle of this year until March 2018.

The Economy-Changing Power of the LED Bulb

Justin Fox, Bloomberg View

Energy-efficient lighting has resulted in striking cost savings for Americans. And it’s just the beginning.

Indian Solar Power Prices Hit Record Low

Michael Safi, The Guardian

Plummeting wholesale prices put the country on track to meet renewable energy targets set out in the Paris agreement. Wholesale solar power prices have reached another record low in India, faster than analysts predicted and further undercutting the price of fossil fuel-generated power in the country.

Why Carbon Tax is Needed And What it Means for Singapore

Quah, The Straits Times

Carbon taxes will be implemented in Singapore from 2019. These taxes will be levied on the largest direct emitters of greenhouse gases, such as power plants. Consultations with industries have been completed and the authorities are in the midst of public consultations.

In Fight Against U.S. Shale Oil, OPEC Risks Lower for Longer

Javier Blas, Bloomberg

When Khalid Al-Falih arrived at Davos in late January, the Saudi oil minister was exultant. The output cuts he’d painstakingly arranged with fellow OPEC states and Russia were working so well, he said, they could probably be phased out by June.

South Africa Reviewing 5 Shale Gas Exploration Applications

Wendell Roelf, Reuters

Recommendations for South Africa’s first shale gas exploration licences in the semi-arid Karoo basin will be finalised soon after environmental objections delayed the process, a senior government official said on Monday.

U.S. Nuclear Capacity and Generation Expected to Decline


Nuclear power currently accounts for about 20% of electricity generation in the United States, playing an important role in electricity markets. EIA’s 2017 Annual Energy Outlook (AEO2017) Reference case assumes that about 25% of the nuclear capacity now operating that does not have announced retirement plans will be removed from service by 2050.

Why The Right Price For Oil Is Between $60 And $70 a Barrel

Dan Steffens, OilPrice

The outlook for U.S. oil and gas producers is already much better than one year ago, and will most likely continue to improve as OPEC extends its production cuts

OPEC to U.S.: Please Don’t Pump So Much Oil!

Ivana Kottasova, CNN Money

OPEC has asked a favor of other major producers: Please stop pumping so much and help us balance the market.The unusual plea was issued Thursday in the cartel’s closely-watched monthly report, which found that global markets are still suffering from too much supply.

Why OPEC Is Having a Hard Time Raising Oil Prices (Pt. 3)

C. Green, Breaking Energy

This is the final segment in a three part series discussing the recent past and future of oil prices and the reasons why prices are where they are. Currently there is a glut in oil inventories worldwide. There are a number of factors contributing to this continuing situation as I have detailed in there previous two segments of this series but in the end it can all be summed up into one simple statement: All parties whether they are individuals, corporations, or nations tend to do what is in their own best interest.

Meet the New Generation of Oklahoma Oil

Shawn Tully, Fortune

Kate Richard grew up in the ultimate company town, Oklahoma City, where virtually every adult seemed to labor for King Oil, and dinner-table talk revolved around the newest exploits of the industry’s flamboyant wildcatters-turned-tycoons. As a youngster, Richard thrilled to her grandfather’s stories of sinking the earliest wells in Angola for what’s now Conoco, and the accounts from her great unclea founder of Devon Energyof planting platforms in the Caspian Sea off Azerbaijan following the fall of the Soviet Union. The anchors of everyday life regularly made way for drilling: Richard…

Oil Investors Love Those Single Malts

Liam Denning, Bloomberg Gadfly

Oil investors seem to be into single malts these days, not blends.It wasn’t always thus. For the longest time, success in the oil game meant spreading your bets: Get into several countries to balance your political risks; build a refining business to hedge your price risk; produce some natural gas to manage your fuel or, latterly, carbon risk. This reached its apotheosis — if that’s the word — in the 1970s, when oil majors veered way off the reservation: For example, Gulf Oil, now part of Chevron Corp., came within a whisker of buying the Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey circus…

The Business Turning Sewage Sludge Into Fuel

Anmar Frangoul, CNBC

When anaerobic digestion takes place, organic materials think food waste are broken down by microorganisms in an oxygen free environment, producing biogas.Described by the U.S. Department of Energy as a proven energy source both in the U.S. and around the world, biogas can in turn be processed, purified and turned into biomethane.The DOE describes biomethane as being “pipeline-quality" and “fully interchangeable with conventional natural gas."

President Trump, Ethanol Is Bad for Your Voters

Washington Examiner

“Ethanol is here to stay," newly confirmed Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue announced this weekend. “And we’re going to work for new technologies to be more efficient."Perdue made the announcement flanked by two Republican Iowa lawmakers, wearing a pin that could take the award for best or most obscure special-interest lobbying swag. It read, “Don’t mess with the RFS," referring to the federal requirement that the nation’s gasoline supply be diluted with massive amounts of ethanol 19.3 billion gallons of the stuff annually.

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