North Sea oil rigs

This morning we’ll take a special look at everything you need to know from BP’s energy review, and then there’s stories about energy rip offs, nuclear cracks, new windfarms and all of that stuff.

Stories not about BP’s energy review 

– Dual-fuel customers of the big energy firms have missed big savings by not switching suppliers, early evidence from a competition inquiry suggests, reports John Moylan for the BBC. 

– Flaws found in Belgium nuclear reactors, reports World Nuclear News. The head of Belgium’s nuclear regulator was reported in the Belgium press saying the cracks which appear to come from operational use mean there should be checks on reactors worldwide. 

– The UK has provided preliminary approval for the world’s biggest offshore windfarm – reports the FT’s Pilita Clark – noting that as with Hinkley point C, a final investment decision hasn’t yet been taken.

– India seeks to create union of world’s solar rich nations, with India the “renewable energy capital of the world”, reports the Economics Times. 

– The EU will probably manage to hit its renewables targets – according to a study reported in Ends.

5 things you need to know from BP’s energy review

1) Energy use and climate science are on a collision course

Energy demand will rise by 40% over the next 20 years and BP think this will mostly be met by fossil fuels leading to a 25% rise in emissions that’s really not in the same ball-park as anything climate change friendly. Here’s a handy chart from Larry Elliott at The Guardian to explain why

2) That said, emissions will rise more slowly than they have been rising

BP thinks they’ll rise by a rate of around 1.1% a year, a slower rate than it previously estimated and considerably slower than the current historical average.

That’s because the share of natural gas and renewables in the energy mix will increase, reports Nina Chestney at Reuters.

3) The US will become self-sufficient in energy as gas overtakes coal thanks to shale

BP expects exports from the US to exceed imports for the first time this year. This will coincide with a big rise in global gas use over the next two decades, overtaking coal as the leading fossil fuel with about half of new gas supplies coming from shale reports City AM’s Sarah Spickernell in her handy roundup.

4) But despite that oil-cartel OPEC will be back

America will become self-sufficient, but the shale boom will then slow down sharply , leading to record demand for crude from Opec producers – reports the FT’s energy editor, Christopher Adams. By happy coincidence for oil major BP, this means the oil market will become far tighter again, pushing up prices.

5) Oil execs including BP think the oil price slump is temporary

Quartz notes the speculation at Davos that the oil price slump is basically another cyclical bust and doesn’t really change the fundamentals of the industry – which is also what BP seem to be saying above. Exxon apparently learn’t their lesson the last time round when they invested the precursor to the Lithium Ion battery, and then gave up on the idea. Oh, and here’s a chart of how things have worked out for them since they bet on oil: