Viet-Chinese Tensions Escalate in South China Sea

A standoff between Vietnam and China over disputed territory in the South China Sea grew worse on May 7 as Vietnam sent naval vessels to confront Chinese ships. Last weekend, China sent an oil rig into territory within Vietnam’s 200-mile exclusive economic zone, prompting Vietnam to demand its removal. An unnamed Vietnamese official said that no shots […]

Brazil Issues Fracking Regulations

By James Burgess: Brazilian regulators have put in place rules to govern the use of hydraulic fracturing. The National Petroleum Agency (ANP) said in a statement that fracking must not harm the environment and announced that it has issued several new regulations to ensure groundwater sources are protected. For example, fracking will not be allowed within 200 meters […]

Japan Imports Record Level of LNG, Coal

Japan reported that it imported record levels of coal and liquefied natural gas for the fiscal year that ended in March. Japan has been forced to import vast amounts of fossil fuels to make up for an energy shortfall caused by its decision to shutter nearly all of the country’s 54 nuclear reactors after the March, 2011 […]

U.S. Oil Imports Continue to Decline

New EIA data shows that U.S. oil imports continued to decline in 2013 as domestic production increased. The U.S. is now importing less oil than at any time since the 1996. Net crude oil imports declined by 10.2% between 2012 and 2013, down to 7.6 million barrels per day. At the same time, EIA data shows that […]

China Eyes Massive Production From First Shale Project

China’s Sinopec is planning to develop a production capacity of 10 billion cubic meters per year by 2017 at the Fuling shale gas field, making it the country’s first commercial shale gas project. Sinopec (the state-run China Petroleum and Chemical Corp.) has spent some $322 million on the Fuling project in China’s southwest, with the first breakthrough commercial discovery […]

Geothermal Gains Traction in Post-Fukushima Japan

Japan’s Chuo Electric Power Co. is preparing to launch the country’s first new geothermal power project in 15 years at a time when Tokyo is grappling with energy alternatives to its deactivated nuclear reactors. The new geothermal plant on Japan’s southern island of Kyushu will take advantage of the area’s natural hot springs and volcanic activity and […]

What Does Putin Hope to Gain by Releasing Khodorkovsky?

On Thursday, in a move that surprised many Russian businessmen, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced that he was considering offering a pardon to the former oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky; on Friday morning the pardon was signed and Khodorkovsky walked free. It is believed that this decision by Putin is intended to reduce the criticism being […]

US Passes Saudi Arabia to Become the World’s Largest Oil Producer

PIRA, a leading consultancy in worldwide energy market analysis, recently announced that the US has finally surpassed Saudi Arabia as the largest oil producer in the world, after an explosion in the use of hydraulic fracking created the largest oil boom in nearly 40 years, only beaten by the production boom in Saudi Arabia between 1970 […]

UK to Set up Sovereign Wealth Fund to Finance Low-Carbon Projects

A new report, written by Professor David Mackay, chief scientific advisor to the Department of Energy and Climate Change, and Dr Timothy Stone, Senior advisor to the Secretary of State, has intricately accessed how the greenhouse gas emissions that would be released from developing shale gas in the UK, would affect the country’s emission targets. Ed Davey, the […]