Quote of the Day

“If Shell gets stuck in a fossil fuel business when the world has moved beyond it and wants low carbon energy at large scale, and other companies can do it economically and acceptably, then I would have thought Shell could die.”

Martin Haigh, who looks after energy modelling in Shell’s scenarios team, in the Financial Times’ “Shell risks losing out in green energy drift”

Lead Stories

How seawater and greenhouses could solve Africa’s food crisis

Business Green
Everything about Seawater Greenhouse is counter-intuitive. You do not have to know much about agriculture to know you don’t grow things in a desert, you don’t grow things using sea water, and you don’t make your key target markets war-torn failed states.
**JK – Interesting read.

US Government Supports Private-Public Water Solutions Worldwide
Ecosystem Marketplace
Water shortages threaten to undermine economic growth and spark conflicts around the world, and agriculture uses 70% of the world’s water. In response, the US State Department is spearheading the development of a global alliance of governments, corporations, and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) aimed at harnessing new technologies for water management around the globe.
**RKB — Big names behind initiative: Africare, the Coca-Cola Company, Procter & Gamble, the Nature Conservancy, Rockefeller Foundation, Ford Motor Company, Skoll Global Threats Fund, the Water Institute at the University of North Carolina, World Resources Institute, Global Environment & Technology Foundation, Global Water Challenge, and Clean Water America Alliance.

S. Korea Sees Carbon Legislation Possible After April Election
South Korea, the fastest-growing producer of greenhouse gases among rich nations, may approve a law on setting up emissions trading in 2015 after the April 11 general elections, a top climate policy official said.

Shell risks losing out in green energy drift
Financial Times
Royal Dutch Shell, one of the world’s biggest oil and gas companies, could “wither away and die” if it acts too slowly to address global climate pressures, one of its executives warned on Monday.

Space and green technology converge at the Cleantech Open
The Cleantech Open, a competition that helps launch new green tech companies, held its launch event Friday night at NASA’s Ames Research Center in Mountain View, Calif. The event brought together nine clean tech companies to exhibit their products or clean tech services.

Do we need a Blue Chip Development Bank?

Business Green
President Obama’s surprise decision to nominate US academic Jim Yong Kim as the next president of the World Bank has again sparked questions about the effectiveness of the development bank and whether a new man at the helm can better mobilise the levels of investment in environmental and social projects that is required.

Abu Dhabi Buys Into Brazil’s EBX
Wall Street Journal
Abu Dhabi’s sovereign-wealth fund said it would invest $2 billion to buy into the sprawling business empire of Brazil’s richest man, Eike Batista, a move that could lead to further investments by the Gulf state in Brazil and Latin America.

Shale Boom in Europe Fades as Polish Wells Come Up Empty

Europe’s best hope for a shale-gas boom is fading as explorers in Poland confront rising taxes, a lack of rigs and rocks that are harder to drill than expected.

EU carbon charge under fire as climate chief heads to U.S.

Point Carbon
The European Union climate chief heads to the United States next week to defend the bloc’s carbon charge on flights to the EU, while governments, airlines and planemakers warn it could lead to chaos in the skies and a trade war.

BarCap raises CO2 price outlook for 2012
Point Carbon
Barclays Capital raised its average 2012 price forecasts for European Union carbon permits on Monday, saying EU lawmakers are likely to agree a short-term fix to a supply glut that has depressed carbon prices to record lows.

Vestas Remains Top Wind Turbine Maker, Goldwind Is Second

The wind-power market is expected to grow more slowly than prior estimates, with Make Consulting and Navigant Consulting Inc. (NCI) cutting forecasts through 2016.

EU push for ocean energy set to fall short

Europe’s wave and tidal power technology is likely to disappoint EU expectations for 2020 and take over a decade to contribute to energy supply in a significant way, even though it is chalking up rapid growth and drawing in big industrial investors.

NASCAR speeds transition to green
latimes.com -Susan Carpenter
When NASCAR raced onto the track at Fontana’s Auto Club Speedway on Sunday, it did so accompanied by the distinct whiff of environmentalism. To help neutralize the carbon-dioxide emissions generated from the race, the track’s owners will plant 100 trees around the community as part of the NASCAR Green Clean Air program. To reduce waste, Coca-Cola set up a portable processing center capable of recycling 1,000 containers per minute, adding to the 6 million containers the company will recycle at NASCAR events this year; Sprint was handing out postage-paid envelopes for fans to recycle their unwanted cellphones when they got home.


Senate opens fight on oil tax breaks
The Hill’s E2 Wire
The Senate voted 92-4 Monday to begin an election-year floor debate over Democratic legislation to repeal oil industry tax breaks, a plan that’s unlikely to ultimately pass but provides a platform for partisan warfare over gasoline prices.

COLUMN-Obama’s confused energy policy: John Kemp

U.S. President Barack Obama has discovered too late that symbols matter. His administration is trying and mostly failing to reverse the impression that it is hostile to fossil fuels such as oil, gas and coal after the president’s peremptory and opportunistic decision to block the Keystone XL pipeline in January.

Tesla Rises to Highest Since IPO After Analyst Boosts Rating
Tesla Motors Inc. (TSLA), the electric car company led by entrepreneur Elon Musk, closed at its highest price since its June 2010 initial public offering after Wunderlich Securities Inc. upgraded the company.

A Smaller Route to Solar Success
The New York Times
There are at least a dozen major ways to turn sunlight into electricity, but one of the more interesting is using a field of mirrors to focus the sun’s energy on a “power tower” where the heat is captured and used later to spin a turbine and turn a generator. As I have previously written, two companies are now planning to build such systems in the desert Southwest with hardware that will store the heat for a rainy day or for the period right after sunset when power demand is still high.


Mulcair’s muted debut as NDP leader comes with no prime minister to spar with
Canadian Press
Know your enemy, know yourself. The time-worn Sun Tzu axiom may as well have been tattooed on Thomas Mulcair’s right hand as he arrived Monday for his first day on Parliament Hill as the leader of the official Opposition.

Kelly Rigg: Pain at the Pump: Time to Embrace the New Normal
Huffington Post
So let’s stop pretending that a massive expansion of domestic drilling, or building the Keystone XL pipeline, would do anything to alleviate gasoline prices. As Peter Van Doren and Jerry Taylor of the Libertarian Cato Institute explain:


Spelman unveils latest push to value ecosystems

Business Green
A government project for ecosystems yesterday moved into its second phase. It will ensure that the value of the services provided to the economy by ecosystems is part of decision making in both private and public sector bodies.


Carbon target scrapped
Sydney Morning Herald
A PLAN to cut Victoria’s greenhouse gas emissions by 20 per cent over the next decade is set to be dumped by the Baillieu government on the basis that it would merely lighten the load imposed on other states.

Canadian Solar, Hakuto to Build Solar Power Plant in Japan
Canadian Solar Inc. (CSIQ) and Hakuto Co. plan to build a 2-megawatt solar plant in Japan’s central Mie prefecture.

China tightens rules for programmatic CDM

Point Carbon
China has said it will no longer approve programmatic CDM schemes that use large-scale methodologies in a bid to align domestic policy with U.N. preferences, a move that could restrain supply of future Chinese offsets to the EU emissions market.

Phl to earn P47-B in carbon trading from coconuts
The Philippines stand to earn some P47 billion in carbon trading revenues from its enchanced nationwide coconut production, the Department of Agriculture (DA) said in a statement.

Africa/Middle East

Senegal’s Sall: the dark horse who beat “The Hare”

Senegal’s Macky Sall has leapt back from the political wilderness with a crushing presidential run-off victory over incumbent Abdoulaye Wade that cements the West African country’s reputation as a stable democracy in a restive region.

Latin America

Drought in South America hits palm oil
Financial Times
Palm oil prices hit a year high on Monday amid a broader rally in oilseeds triggered by concerns about the soyabean crop in South America. A drought in South America, which grows half the world’s soyabeans, has been pushing up the price of vegetable oil and the commodities they are made from. According to Oil World, a Hamburg-based forecaster, world soyabean production will probably fall by a record 22m-23m tonnes this season.

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