LONDON, Sept 7 (Reuters) – Royal Dutch Shell’s
investment in a carbon capture plant at its tar sands facility
in Alberta shows the company recognises the threat of climate
policies targeting unconventional oil.
The project will help shield Shell against future penalties
on tar sands, as planned by California and the European Union,
while its commercial success will also depend on demand for the
CCS technology which it develops.
LONDON, Aug 2 (Reuters) – Developers have made big returns
from subsidies on renewable energy projects, raising the
question whether new tax increases are justified in a continuing
financial crisis or merely state opportunism.
Investors are arguing the latter, but the picture is more
The Czech Republic recently won court backing for a tax on
solar projects, which Bulgaria is considering emulating, while
Spain plans to raise an additional 6 billion euros ($7.38
billion) or so a year from new taxes on power generation.
LONDON, Aug 1 (Reuters) – An elusive dream of a single
European market in electricity will get a boost from growing
deployment of intermittent renewable energy, but will still
depend on some underwriting by already stretched consumers.
Vast differences in wholesale power prices remain across the
European Union, illustrating grid congestion.
LONDON, July 26 (Reuters) – Natural gas has strong political
support in Britain, shown by a tax break choreographed this week
to balance support for wind power, but it is also on a collision
course with the country’s carbon emissions targets.
That pits the country’s energy and climate change ministry
against the Treasury, and ranges arguments for a green economy
against affordability, splitting the coalition government and
suggesting doubt will continue to cloud the fossil fuel’s
LONDON, July 17 (Reuters) – The lesson from the latest delay
to Finland’s planned new nuclear reactor, announced on Monday,
is either build lots of them or don’t build any at all.
It is a general economic principle that costs per plant
decline the bigger a programme.
LONDON, July 5 (Reuters) – The bankruptcy this week of
United States-based Abound Solar rams home the victory of
silicon-based modules in the latest round of a bitter technology
race that has hurt investors, including the U.S. Department of
Energy, and is far from over.
The two main photovoltaic (PV) technologies are based on
crystalline silicon and thinner (“thin-film”) cadmium-based
LONDON, June 27 (Reuters) – Rising crop costs are squeezing
biofuel margins and may see production fall or stagnate in the
United States for the first time since 1996, adding to
challenges in Brazil and Europe.
A long-run correlation between U.S. corn and crude oil broke
down this month, stemming from new fears for the world economy
coupled with harsh conditions in key corn growing areas.
LONDON, June 21 (Reuters) – The case is growing to widen
conventional measures of human wealth to take account of
degrading natural assets, but the prospect is more remote as
politicians cling to superficially higher GDP values during the
Business leaders, academics, lawmakers and green groups have
pushed for including social and environmental data in national
accounts at a sustainable development summit in Rio de Janeiro
LONDON, June 20 (Reuters) – The financial crisis has
definitively trumped the environment in a telling conjunction of
G20 and green summits in Mexico and Brazil this week.
The focus of the Mexico meeting, an unfolding drama of a
possible collapse of the euro and return to global financial
crisis, has distracted from an environmental threat that may be
urgent, planetary and irreversible, but less palpable.
LONDON, June 15 (Reuters) – The shale gas revolution has
allowed the United States to tap vast new reserves of gas and
oil, but last year’s Fukushima nuclear crisis may unleash an
There are conflicting signals for green energy investing.
On the one hand, global non-hydro renewable energy
generation has grown by 10 percent annually over the past two
decades, while investment reached a new record last year, and
banks Goldman Sachs, Citigroup and Bank of America
recently endorsed the business case.