Thursday, August 9, 2018

GWPF Newsletter: Satellites Reveal China Is Quietly Building Many New Coal Power Plants








Pakistan To Kick-Start New Coal Boom

In this newsletter:

1) Satellites Reveal China Is Quietly Building Many New Coal Power Plants
China Dialogue, 3 August 2018 

2) Pakistan To Kick-Start New Coal Boom
Financial Times, 31 July 2018 


3) India Gives Green Light For Shale Revolution
OilPrice.com, 4 August 2018 

4) Handelsblatt: German Wind Industry In ‘Serious Crisis & Could Implode’
No Tricks Zone, 7 August 2018

5) This Silly Season, Why Not Panic About Global Warming?
The Spectator, 8 August 2018 
 

Full details:

1) Satellites Reveal China Is Quietly Building Many New Coal Power Plants
China Dialogue, 3 August 2018 

Satellite imagery reveals that many coal-fired power projects that were halted by the Chinese government have quietly restarted.



Analysis by CoalSwarm estimates that 46.7 gigawatts of new and restarted coal-fired power construction is visible based on satellite imagery supplied by Planet Labs. The coal-fired power plants are either generating power or will soon be operational. If all the plants reach completion they would increase China’s coal-fired power capacity by 4%.

One of the biggest issues facing China’s coal sector since 2016 has been too much generating capacity, not too little. So what changed?

Demand for coal-power rebounds

Recently published economic data for the first half of 2018, along with the latest policy adjustments, indicate that China’s power demand is rebounding.

Li Fulong, head of the department of development and planning at the National Energy Administration, said at a press conference on July 30 that coal consumption in China increased about 3.1% in the first half of 2018 compared with the same period last year. The main driver of that was coal-fired power generation. Figures from the National Bureau of Statistics show a leap of 9.4% in electricity use across the same period.

Meanwhile, the arrival of summer has led to temporary electricity shortages in many regions, with reports of power demand outstripping supply in Shandong, Henan, Hunan, Hubei and Zhejiang provinces. In Shandong the shortfall was estimated at three gigawatts.

This has resulted in a loosening of policy-level restrictions on the coal power sector. In May 2018 the National Energy Administration permitted Shaanxi, Hubei, Jiangxi and Anhui to restart construction of coal-fired power stations. Restrictions were also relaxed to some degree in four other provinces.

“A rebound in industrial demand for electricity seems to have shifted attitudes among policy-makers, who are now more accepting of overcapacity,” said Lauri Myllyvirta, energy analyst with Greenpeace.

Full story

2) Pakistan To Kick-Start New Coal Boom
Financial Times, 31 July 2018 

Pakistan believes it may have found a way out of its long-term energy supply crisis, thanks largely to more than $35bn worth of loans provided by China under the $60bn China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

The country has experienced years of rolling blackouts that have left residents in the dark and stifled the country’s manufacturing industries.

But now it is investing in an energy technology that is fast going out of fashion in other parts of the region — coal.

Under the CPEC, Beijing is planning to spend at least $35bn building new power stations, which will be mainly coal-fired, using resources from coalfields at Thar, about 400km east of Karachi. The plans will mean building 9.5 gigawatts of new coal-fired capacity — a third of the total capacity the country has already built…

And the strategy looks set to continue under the new prime minister Imran Khan, head of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf party. Again speaking before the election, Mr Khan told the FT he backed using Thar coal to boost the country’s electricity supplies. “Thar coal is in a desert, it’s near the coast, and there are new technologies which now make it possible that you don’t damage the environment,” he said.

Full post

see also PAKISTAN ANNOUNCES 300 YEARS WORTH OF COAL RESERVES TO BE TAPPED 

WHY INDIA AND PAKISTAN ARE RENEWING THEIR LOVE AFFAIR WITH COAL

3) India Gives Green Light For Shale Revolution
OilPrice.com, 4 August 2018 

India’s cabinet approved on Wednesday a policy to allow companies to explore and exploit unconventional oil and gas resources such as shale oil and gas and coalbed methane under the existing production sharing contracts, as it aims to reduce its dependency on energy imports.



The uniform oil and gas exploration policy will encourage the current contractors in the licensed and/or leased areas to unlock the potential of unconventional hydrocarbons in the existing acreages, the government said in a statement today.

The policy is expected to bring in new investment in exploration and production (E&P) and raise the chances for new oil and gas discoveries that could potentially increase India’s domestic production.

Unconventional oil and gas exploration under existing production sharing contracts (PSCs) “will provide a major boost towards ensuring energy security for India,” India’s Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said on Twitter. The new policy is a complete shift from the ‘one hydrocarbon resource type’ to ‘uniform licensing policy’ for simultaneous exploration and exploitation of oil and gas in an area of 72,027 square kilometers (27,810 square miles) under PSCs.

The policy envisages utilizing “E&P facilities to full potential by unlocking exploration & exploitation of unconventional hydrocarbon reserves like shale gas & CBM which could not be explored earlier due to policy restrictions. New discoveries will also boost domestic production,” the minister said.

India, which imports around 80 percent of the oil it consumes, is one of the world’s biggest oil importers, and its oil demand continues to grow.

Full post

4) Handelsblatt: German Wind Industry In ‘Serious Crisis & Could Implode’
No Tricks Zone, 7 August 2018
P Gosselin

Now that the German solar industry has crashed and burned out, it looks as if the wind industry is right poised to be next, a leading and highly respected German business daily reports.



About a week ago I reported here how Germany’s “Solar Valley” spectacularly crashed into the wall of reality, turning into an industrial Death Valley, as almost the entire solar components production industry collapsed and left tens of thousands without jobs.

And the media, politicians and activists wonder why the rightwing AfD party is rapidly rising. Maybe people are just getting totally fed up with all the bullshit promises they get fed daily.

Wind industry getting blown away

Now that the German solar industry has crashed and burned out, it looks as if the wind industry is right poised to be next, a leading and highly respected German business daily reports.

The online Handelsblatt here writes that Germany’s wind energy industry now faces “a serious crisis” and “numerous jobs” are at risk.

For a country that claims to be adamant and devoted to fulfilling the conditions of the Paris Accord, it’s indeed quite surprising that the very industry that is supposed to be the big key for all this to happen in Germany is now collapsing.

Prices for wind electricity have plummeted

One reason, the Handelsblatt cites, is the “price deterioration for wind electricity”. The Handelsblatt adds: “The mood in the sector is at a low” and now “the German wind market is threatening to implode“.

Huge layoffs taking place

The flagship daily writes how renowned companies like Enercon “are massively slashing jobs”. Enercon plans to lay off 835 workers in Germany alone. Many other companies have made similar layoff announcements, Handelsblatt reports.

The German daily blames a lack of orders from the domestic market, due to “a dramatic price fall” for electricity from the wind. Clearly without the massive subsidies, wind energy shrivels almost instantaneously.

The Handelsblatt also explains how earlier government moves to reform the wind energy feed-in rules have backfired:

The aim of the federal government was to accelerate expansion. Instead, it slowed it down.”

And now thousands of workers will lose their jobs and risk becoming politically disenfranchised. Currently Germany’s flagship political parties, CDU and SPD, are hovering near all time lows in the opinion polls.

143,000 jobs at risk

The situation is bleak, and the German business daily adds that the consequences “could be fatal for the wind branch”, which provides some 143,000 jobs Germany-wide.

Full post

5) This Silly Season, Why Not Panic About Global Warming?
The Spectator, 8 August 2018 
Andrew Montford


This is the silly season, and there’s none quite as silly as an eco-warrior in the sunshine.




















It all started so well. When the BBC decided that the good weather had gone on long enough to make it newsworthy, they invited the Met Office’s Stephen Belcher on to Newsnight, no doubt hoping that he would fan the flames with some lurid claims about how we were all going to fry in years to come. They were therefore no doubt thoroughly disappointed by his rather measured response, and his suggestion that that it was ‘probably part of natural cycles in the weather, but… superimposed on [a] background of global warming’.

However, as the warm spell has turned into a heatwave, environmental correspondents in the media have been unable to resist progressively more lurid tales. This is the silly season after all, and there’s none quite as silly as an eco-warrior in the sunshine.
For example, by the end of July we had the UK media relaying, in unison, the daft claim by the House of Commons Environmental Audit Committee that there will be ‘7,000 heat-related deaths every year in the UK by 2050’. Not one of the eco-correspondents troubled themselves to examine the summer mortality figures, which are declining in the UK (as well as in countries like Spain and the USA) despite recent rises in temperatures.

Then we had some positively hysterical claims about wildfires, with the Sacramento Bee claiming that such fires are ‘climate change, for real and in real time’, a position that was picked up and repeated, again entirely thoughtlessly, by the Guardian. Details about why, exactly, wildfires should be considered ‘climate change’ were rather thin on the ground, however, and the observation by the eminent environmentalist Bjorn Lomborg that there has been a rapid declinein forest fires over the last century showed why.

Over at the New Yorker, they had lost the plot even more thoroughly, not only getting excited about wildfires, but also the kind of weather events that are seen almost every year, observing excitedly that ‘rains have swamped parts of the East Coast, and tornadoes have swept across the plains’. Golly, tornadoes during the tornado season? Whatever next? And who could have predicted thunderstorms in summer?

Doing the rounds of the ‘professionally hysterical’ today is the tale that we are in danger of the Earth superheating with (in the words of the BBC’s Matt McGrath) ‘boiling hot temperatures and towering seas…’ (a touch of the sun, surely). The source is a scientific paper that was apparently rushed into print to meet a need: there are no new scientific findings, just a lengthy discussion of climate ‘tipping points’, which are little more than idle speculation and were largely dismissed in the last international assessment of the world’s climate. But the scientists involved are no doubt happy to get their names in the press and the journalists are happy to have something to write about.

And that’s the problem of course. This sort of super-hyped eco-nonsense used to be the preserve of the wilder writers on the eco-journalist beat: the Guardian and the Independent and the like. But as reader numbers have dwindled and eyeballs turned elsewhere, the rot has spread, and now every newspaper and TV station, from the FT to the Sun, is trying to pull off the same trick: photocopying the wildest eco-shlock press releases from both greens and academia, while keeping the fingers crossed that nobody notices that it’s largely unsubstantiated. But people will notice, of course, because you can’t fool us all of the time.

Andrew Montford is the deputy director of the Global Warming Policy Forum


The London-based Global Warming Policy Forum is a world leading think tank on global warming policy issues. The GWPF newsletter is prepared by Director Dr Benny Peiser - for more information, please visit the website at www.thegwpf.com.

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