1) Oil: Price climbs but BP in trouble
In just the last three trading days, the price of oil has jumped 20% — from $44 a barrel to $54.
After months in freefall, Bloomberg says oil is now “on a tear”.
Despite this literal change in fortune, big oil remains down in the dumps about future prospects — BP in particular.
Chief executive Bob Dudley told the FT this oil market crisis will be the worst since the 1980s, and expects the price to stay at lower levels for the next several years.
One of his BP boss predecessors, Lord Browne, has stressed the importance of cutting costs at North Sea oil operations to stay globally competitive, reports the BBC.
And BP has other things on its mind as well, including a fraud investigation by a US financial regulator and the under-the-sea discovery of 10 million gallons of ‘missing oil’ from the 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster.
2) India: Nuclear ‘breakthrough’ and mine auctions
Reuters reports that the US-India deal on nuclear energy will be finalised this year, with India hoping unlock tens of billions of dollars that have for years been stuck in the drawing board —and treble its nuclear capacity.
And Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar says India is already “walking the talk” on its clean energy agenda, reports AFP.
After last year cancelling more than 200 coal mine licenses, India has been auctioning them off in tranches, the first of which – according to the Economic Times- has seen 173 bids for 23 mines.
Meanwhile Vice News has published a feature entitled: ‘The 100,000 Children Working in the Illegal Mines of India’s Coal State’.
3) Keystone XL: EPA warns of emissions
The Environmental Protection Agency has said, amidst falling oil prices, the construction of the Keystone XL pipeline would increase the use of fossil fuels,reports the New York Times.
The pipeline would rewaken development of the Alberta oil sands which aren’t seeing so much business since the price plunge, the EPA claims.
And Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has joined an environmental subcommittee with jurisdiction over the EPA in an attempt to neuter the organisation,according to Think Progress.
Environmental NGOs are pushing to make the electrification of vehicles an EU priority, reports EurActiv.
This follows news from Forbes that electric car sales grew by more than 50% in western Europe last year.
Germany looks set to install more than twice the number of offshore wind turbines as the UK this year, reports EurActiv.
While UK onshore wind fears for its future if the Conservative Party wins the general election in May, reports Business Green.
And China is going bigger and bigger on nuclear, merging its biggest nuclear tech company with one its biggest producers, reports WSJ.