“I’m calling for zero nuclear power,” said Junichiro Koizumi at a lecture in Nagoya. Hugely popular prime minister from 2001 to 2006, he’d groomed Shinzo Abe to become his successor. Abe, now again PM, is trying to restore the scandal-plagued nuclear industry to its former glory. But Koizumi’s words ripped into his policies – and are having an impact.
TEPCO, owner of the Fukushima nuke, whose lackadaisical handling of the fiasco is a fiasco itself, was bailed out by taxpayers after the disaster. It got another bailout as the government decided to deal itself with the radioactive groundwater leaking into the ocean. TEPCO should be bankrupt. But to add insult to injury, the government said, let’s not hurt investors!
Colorado, one of the most densely fracked areas in the US, is experiencing some of the worst flooding it has ever seen, and people are beginning to worry about the stability of those fracking sites and wells, many of which have been completely covered by the floodwater and are leaking (with video of leaking wells).
The oil producing country of note with major disruptions due to the Arab Spring was Libya. But it produces a relatively minor amount of the global supply. Syria, Egypt, Yemen, and other countries with their own “Arab Springs” are not major producers. So why the fear premium in the price of oil?
By Robert M. Cutler of Oilprice.com: As the US has yet again delayed a decision on the controversial Keystone XL Pipeline designed to take the hydrocarbon product of Alberta’s oil sands to the Gulf Coast, Canada pushes ahead with a strategic plan for a pipeline infrastructure to the Pacific Coast.
They’re at it again! Originally created by Congress in 2007, the Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing Program provided low-cost government loans that were subsidized, and then in part eaten as we now know, by hapless and strung-out American taxpayers. In 2011, it was left behind as dead, but now the government wants to bring that zombie back.
The US shale revolution is leaving its marks. In 2009, the US surpassed Russia as the world’s largest producer of natural gas. In May, production exceeded imports for the first time in 16 years. In 2020, the US might overtake Saudi Arabia as the top oil-producing nation. But there aren’t enough pipelines in place to handle it.
By Don Quijones: Hyper-connected Goldman Sachs has managed to manipulate and profit from every financial bubble since the Roaring Twenties. And now they’re doing it all over again with the creation of a carbon trading bubble. But Goldman is not the only one with skin in the game.
By Chriss Street: Mexico began the process to amend its constitution to end the state-owned monopoly for exploration, development, and distribution, known as Pemex. Over the last 10 years, Mexican production fell 30%. US production leaped 50% due to capital investment and new technology. Now Mexico wants to modernize its oil industry.
When going overseas, Chancellor Merkel doesn’t leave home without planeloads full of executives from Germany’s most coddled companies – exports being the core of foreign policy. And if these deals get snagged on the rusty nails of payment risks, it’s up to the government to help out with guarantees, even if they’re infested with conflicts.