Hinkley B

We published a leaked document (and story based on it) showing that the UK government – all the way up to David Cameron – is planning to retaliate for Austria’s planned legal action against Hinkley C receiving State Aid, according to a senior diplomat. (Hinkley B shown above.)

The story was also covered by the FT and Guardian.

We also have a comment piece from Joss Garman, senior research fellow at IPPR, titled: “It’s time to cut the real green crap” – in which he explains various badly designed energy policies are that unnecessarily short-changing families and businesses.

Top stories

1) Oil prices take another nosedive

Oil tumbled for the second day in a row, with Brent Crude slipping back below $50 a barrel, after a government report showed US crude stockpiles reached a new record high, WSJ reports.

Shell’s CEO Ben van Beurden is to tell industry conference not to expect a quick rebound in the oil price from the current six-year lows, according to The Telegraph.

An oil price analyst told CNBC crude prices will get worse before they get better.

US oil services firm Halliburton is set to cut up to 8% of its global workforce in response to the fall in oil prices that has depressed petroleum industry investment.

2) Australian coal miners produce a lot – hurt prices

There has been an increase in Australian coal production, but this is preventing mine closures that are needed, the Sydney Morning Herald writes.

In related news Platts reports Glencore produced 146.3 million mt of coal during 2014, climbing 6% on the year, due to productivity improvements and the delivery of various Australian thermal coal projects, the company said Wednesday.

In other news

ICYMI last night, the UK government passed the Infrastructure Bill, with the government’s amendments going through (a bit of analysis on the government amendments compared to the proposed Labour ones here).

Renewables are better than ‘risky’ geoengineering, writes Climate Central.

Carbon Brief’s Simon Evans has written an epic piece asking ‘What impact will cheap gas have on UK climate policy?’

Steel producer ArcelorMittal’s Polish arm said on Wednesday it might reduce coal supplies from Polish miner JSW to limit the risk of delivery disruptions if workers’ protests at JSW recur – according to Reuters.

The Spanish government is reportedly planning to kick-start the country’s renewable energy sector, after controversial retroactive changes to the country’s subsidy regime led to a drastic slowdown in investment, Business Green reports.

California calls on pension funds to divest from coal in climate change push, the Guardian reports.
Explosion on Petrobras oil ship leaves three workers dead and six missing, the Guardian also reports.

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