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Saturday, 30 April 2016

#England Mourns Passing of Golden Eagle


England's Remaining Golden Eagle Missing

Wildlife experts say the bird likely died of natural causes after they fail to spot him at his usual haunts in the Lake District

 A Golden eagle in flight. The missing golden eagle had been resident at Haweswater in the Lake District for 15 years.

England's last golden eagle feared dead

England’s only resident golden eagle is likely to have died after failing to appear this spring, wildlife experts fear.
The bird, which has been a resident at Riggindale near Haweswater, Cumbria, since 2001, has not seen by RSPB staff since last November, and would normally be seen at this time of year building a nest and displaying to attract a mate.
Lee Schofield, site manager at RSPB Haweswater, said: “When the eagle didn’t appear last month we thought there was a chance he might be hunting in a nearby valley but over the past few weeks we’ve been gradually losing hope.”
The eagle, who did not have a name, was believed to have been around 20 years old and had lived alone since the death of his mate in 2004.
“We will probably never find out what happened to him but as he was ... an advanced age for an eagle, it’s quite possible that he died of natural causes,” Schofield said. 

EYE on the World - 30 April 2016

" Stories Going Beyond the Mainstream "  


 Chasing Functional Extinction - Tigers, Oil Industry, and... 

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Goldman Pegs Oil Between $20-40 in New Industry Order

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After a decade-long “investment phase” that helped unleash the shale revolution, oil is seeking a new equilibrium between supply and demand. Jeff Currie, head of Commodities Research for Global Investment Research at Goldman Sachs, describes how the market has entered an “exploitation phase” that puts downward pressure on prices.  


The Nuclear Taboo - Rethinking Armageddon

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The world is far different today. On the one hand, both the United States and Russia have far smaller nuclear arsenals than they did at the Cold War’s end. At the same time, new nuclear powers have emerged in pace with advanced conventional precision warfare capabilities. The rise of cyber warfare has also led to concerns over the security and reliability of early warning and command-and-control systems, and weapon systems as well. Advances in the cognitive sciences and research on Cold War crisis decision-making have challenged some of our thinking as to how strategies based on deterrence work, or risk failing. Together, these and other recent developments have combined to form what some are calling a Second Nuclear Age.

Sure Sign Global Economy Heading for Recession

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China Ocean Freight Index Collapses to Record Low  

  1. ....exports are down 9.6% year-over year. Specifically:

  1. To the US -8.8%
  2. To Hong Kong -6.5%
  3. To Japan -5.5%
  4. To South Korea -11.2%
  5. To Taiwan -3.7%
  6. To the countries in the ASEAN -13.7%
  7. To the EU -6.9%
  8. To South Africa -29.6% (!)
  9. To Brazil -47.2% (!!)
  10. To Australia -1.9%
  11. To New Zealand -12.4%.  

GRIM CHARTS: Earnings and S&P Negatively Correlating

Since mid-2015, corporate earnings and the S&P 500 have been moving in the complete opposite direction. Last time they had a complete negative relationship, it was back in 2009—when the stock market crashed.

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Stock Market Crash: These Charts Are a Grim Warning for Investors

  Charts Investors Shouldn’t Overlook

Mainstream stock advisors will never tell you this, but it’s true: the odds of an economic collapse and stock market crash in 2016 are stacking up higher each day.
When I want to know where the stock market is headed, I look at three indicators and they are very powerful predictors over a longer-term period. Those indicators are copper prices, corporate earnings, and how investors treat utilities stocks compared to technology stocks.

More Woes for Schlumberger

Less spending on oil and gas exploration taking its toll on one of the sector's largest companies.

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HOUSTON, April 22 (UPI) -- Schlumberger, the largest oil field services company in the world, said its first quarter revenue experienced one of its sharpest declines since 2014.
The company said revenue through March 31 was $6.5 billion, a 16 percent drop from the previous quarter and 36 percent lower year-on-year.
Chairman and CEO Paal Kibsgaard said in a statement the sequential decrease was one of the largest since crude oil prices started moving sharply lower near the end of 2014.

Just Awful: "Beautiful Cambodian Tigers Functionally Extinct"

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Tigers Are Now Extinct In A Country Where They Used To Thrive 

Six years after 13 countries pledged to double the number of tigers in the wild by 2020, the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) declared tigers “functionally extinct” in Cambodia on Wednesday.
According to WWF, the last wild tiger in the country was observed in 2007 thanks to a hidden camera in the Mondulkiri Protected Forest. Cambodia, one of the 13 countries in the world where tigers live, has approved a plan to reintroduce tigers into the Mondulkiri protected forest in eastern Cambodia, the Guardian reports. “We want two male tigers and five to six females tigers for the start,” said Keo Omaliss, director of the department of wildlife and biodiversity at the Forestry Administration, according to the Guardian. “This is a huge task.”

Friday, 29 April 2016

Today's ENERGY News - 29 April 2016

Top Stories 

Oil Prices Fall On Unexpected EIA Barrel Build

One hundred and sixteen years after the birth of Woody Woodpecker creator and animator Walter Lantz, and WTI crude oil is knocking on the door of $45 – and knocking on wood that U.S. production is wilting. Here are six things to consider about the oil market on this final Wednesday in April: 1) Today is set to be dominated by a game of two halves; inventories this morning, and Federal Reserve rumblings this afternoon. While the API inventory report points to a draw to crude stocks (h/t lower imports), expectations of dovish rhetoric from the Fed is putting downward pressure on the dollar. Hence, crude is once again pushing on to new highs for the year. The bullish sentiment for oil however did not last long after the DOE surprised by contradicting the API and reporting a significant build in U.S. crude stocks. 2) A piece today talking […]

Analysts Aren’t Buying the Oil Rally

Even as oil rallies, analysts have barely nudged up their price forecasts as they worry that crude’s current gains might not be sustainable. The price of oil has jumped by around 70% from the decade-lows it hit earlier this year. That is mainly on hopes that dwindling U.S. oil production will help take crude out of an oversupplied market. But many analysts aren’t buying the rally. They question whether the glut is indeed on the wane given current stockpiles and the potential for increased supply from Iran and elsewhere. They point out that last year, the oil price also rallied in the spring on a belief that supply was falling, only to collapse in the second half of the year. A survey of 13 investment banks by The Wall Street Journal sees Brent crude, the international oil-price benchmark, averaging $41 a barrel this year, up a dollar from the […]

Something Has To Give – Goldman Sachs Expects More Dividend Cuts

It hasn’t been a great week for Big Oil. BP reported an 80 percent decline in earnings, and ExxonMobil lost its coveted AAA credit rating , which it has held uninterrupted for more than eight decades. Low oil prices are still wreaking havoc on the industry, hollowing out profits and forcing companies to cut back on spending and personnel. It is a sign of the times that BP’s $532 million net profit – which excludes nearly $1 billion in fresh charges from the Deepwater Horizon disaster way back in 2010 – beat analysts’ estimates and was considered a very positive result. BP’s share price jumped more than 5 percent on April 26 following the results. But the oil majors are still hurting. And it is unclear whether or not they can maintain their generous dividend policies. BP’s dividend yield now exceeds 7 percent and Royal Dutch Shell has a […]

Why Saudi Arabia Will Not Win The Oil Price War

Crude oil prices continued to surprise on Tuesday, with the U.S. benchmark adding another 4 percent to $44.60 a barrel. West Texas Intermediate is now up 65 percent since hitting 13-year lows below $27 a barrel February 11. It’s a performance only bettered by the globe’s second most traded bulk commodity – iron ore. But like analysts of the steelmaking raw material, many in the industry have been surprised by the extent of the rally, consistently calling the oil price lower. The blame for the cloudy outlook for crude is mostly being laid at the door of Saudi-Arabia. After the collapse of the Doha talks to freeze production and amid a spat with the U.S. over terrorism , the world’s top producer has threatened a scorched earth policy when it comes to maintaining and growing its market share. But there is an alternative view out there that argues that […]

Venezuela Needs Oil’s Rally More Than Anyone as Economy Teeters

Few countries need oil’s rally to last more than Venezuela, where the economy’s expected to shrink 8 percent this year and a lack of petrodollars has seen shops run short of consumer goods. The Latin American nation with the world’s largest oil reserves relies on crude shipments for 95 percent of export revenue. It will default this year barring a large jump in the oil price or a financial bailout, said Thomas Olney, a London-based analyst at consultants FGE. Credit-default swap traders have put the chances of non-payment through June next year at 67 percent, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Following the collapse of oil-freeze talks in Qatar this month, Venezuelan Energy Minister Eulogio del Pino warned crude may revisit the 12-year lows of earlier this year as supply continues to swamp demand. Even with a rebound since February, prices remain 60 percent below their 2014 high. That’s […]

The Nuclear Taboo - Rethinking Armageddon

Rethinking Armageddon

The First Nuclear Age was characterized by the Cold War era bipolar international system and a corresponding bipolar nuclear competition between the United States and the Soviet Union. While a few other states, such as Great Britain and France, also possessed nuclear arms, their arsenals were very small compared to those of the two superpowers.
The world is far different today. On the one hand, both the United States and Russia have far smaller nuclear arsenals than they did at the Cold War’s end. At the same time, new nuclear powers have emerged in pace with advanced conventional precision warfare capabilities. The rise of cyber warfare has also led to concerns over the security and reliability of early warning and command-and-control systems, and weapon systems as well. Advances in the cognitive sciences and research on Cold War crisis decision-making have challenged some of our thinking as to how strategies based on deterrence work, or risk failing. Together, these and other recent developments have combined to form what some are calling a Second Nuclear Age.

Thursday, 28 April 2016

Today's ENERGY News - 28 April 2016

Top Stories 

BP eyes more spending cuts after 80 percent profit drop

BP said on Tuesday it could cut capital spending further after reporting an 80 percent drop in profits in the first quarter of the year, when oil prices touched a near 13-year low. The British oil company, the first major to report on one of the weakest quarters, lowered its 2016 spending target to $17 billion, from $17-19 billion, and said the marker could fall to $15-$17 billion next year if oil prices remain weak. These cost reductions have enabled the oil producer to forecast it can balance its books at an oil price of $50-55 a barrel in 2017, it said, down from $60 previously eyed. BP shares opened 3 percent higher on the London Stock Exchange on Tuesday, the second-biggest gainer in the blue-chip FTSE 100 index. Chief Executive Bob Dudley said he […]

Texas, Oklahoma, Wyoming: Oil Woes Start to Hit Hard

There are some early signs of delinquency-rate… The slump in crude prices is starting to show up as missed payments by consumers in the oil patch. In states from Oklahoma and Texas to North Dakota and Wyoming, rising unemployment in the energy sector is pushing up loan delinquencies and raising the risk of new losses for banks. Overall, energy-dependent states are posting delinquency rates that in many cases exceed the national average, according to data prepared for The Wall Street Journal by credit bureau TransUnion. “In these energy states, we are clearly seeing the impact of the loss of oil jobs,” said Ezra Becker, senior vice president and head of research at TransUnion. “We don’t expect to see any kind of material improvement in the short term.” Some 119,600 oil and gas jobs nationwide have been eliminated—22% of the total—since September […]

Oil Rising Faster Than Ruble Bolsters Russia’s Revenue Outlook

The outlook for Russia’s earnings from oil exports is improving as the price of a barrel of crude in ruble terms rose to the highest in more than five months. The currency’s 2.8 percent advance this month has lagged a gain of 18 percent in Brent crude, which is used to price Russia’s main export blend. The exchange rate’s relative weakness means the government is earning more from sales of the dollar-denominated commodity. The ruble was little changed at 65.18 per dollar by 12:33 p.m. in Moscow as Brent rose 2.4 percent to $46.84 a barrel, or 3,052 rubles. The oil-price recovery is bringing relief to the government as it seeks funds to bridge what analysts project will be the biggest budget deficit as a percentage of economic output since 2010. This year’s fiscal plan was based on the state receiving 3,165 rubles for each barrel it sells. The […]

Can Oil Continue To Rally Like This?

The collapse of the rig count and depressed drilling activity has already knocked about 700,000 barrels per day of oil production offline. • But the rig count could bottom out this year and begin climbing again. However, the EIA doesn’t expect oil production to rise in the short run even if the rig count rebounds. Oil production is expected to continue to fall through 2017 as too few new wells come online to replace rapidly falling shale output. • Total U.S. oil production is expected to fall from 9.43 mb/d in 2015 to 8.04 mb/d in 2017, a figure that includes rising output from […]

Unpaid bills add to China debt problems as receivables mount

Times have changed for Yu Xingzhi since China’s economic boom years. Despite the slowing economy, sales at Shanghai Caison Color Material Chemical are holding up. The trouble is, her customers — garment manufacturers and packaging producers buying her dyes and inks — are taking more time to pay for what they buy. “Receivables are the unavoidable problem for traditional manufacturers. If you don’t accept receivables, you have no business. It’s standard industry practice, even though no one likes it,” says Ms Yu, the dyemaker’s general manager. It is a vicious circle and one threatening the health of the economy. Ever longer delays in bills being paid are creating a chain of squeezed cash flow and debt that runs from large state-owned enterprises through to smaller suppliers and even employees struggling to pay their own bills. Listed companies had to wait a median 70 days to receive payment last year, […]

Climate Change Dramatically Affects Africa

 Climate News


Africa 2050 Human Existence Still Possible?

Climate: Africa’s Human Existence Is at Severe Risk 

“Africa’s human existence and development is under threat from the adverse impacts of climate change – its population, ecosystems and unique biodiversity will all be the major victims of global climate change.”

This is how clear the Nairobi-based United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) is when it comes to assessing the negative impact of climate change on this continent of 54 countries with a combined population of over 1,200 billion [1.2 billion] inhabitants. “No continent will be struck as severely by the impacts of climate change as Africa.”

Other international organisations are similarly trenchant. For instance, the World Bank, basing on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reports, confirms that Africa is becoming the most exposed region in the world to the impacts of climate change.

In Sub-Saharan Africa, extreme weather will cause dry areas to become drier and wet areas wetter; agriculture yields will suffer from crop failures; and diseases will spread to new altitudes, say the World Bank experts, while alerting that by 2030 it is expected that 90 million more people in Africa will be exposed to malaria, “already the biggest killer in Sub-Saharan Africa.”

Wednesday, 27 April 2016

Today's ENERGY News - 27 April 2016

Top Stories 

Weakened Saudi Arabia Could See Social Unrest After Economic Shakeup

Despite oil’s rebound from cyclical lows and the world’s exuberance that the energy space may be saved (on the basis of headline-reading algo pumping momentum into commodity futures products that only leveraged Chinese speculators could find value in), something ugly is occurring in Saudi Arabian money-markets. There appears to be a growing funding squeeze in The Kingdom as 3-month interbank rates spike above 2 percent for the first time since January 2009, prompting King Salman to approve a ‘post-oil economic plan’. (Click to enlarge) Whether this spike is responsible or not, The Kingdom is clearly seeking ways to reduce its reliance on crude. As Bloomberg reports, King Salman approved a blueprint for diversifying the country’s economy away from oil on Monday, a package of developmental, economic, social and other programs. Saudi Arabia’s plan for the post-hydrocarbon era will have to overcome habits developed over decades of relying on crude […]

Venezuela Starts Power Rationing, Oil Production Likely to Fall

Venezuela—home to the largest oil reserves in the world–will for the next 40 days experience a four-hour blackout every single day, and there are fears that the rationing could lead to unrest and trigger a decline in oil output at a time when the country is barely hanging on. The decision to ration electricity was brought about by a severe drought that has rendered the level of the Guri dam – the country’s major source of power generation – so low that if the weather doesn’t change, the authorities will have to shut it down. The blackouts will affect households and industrial users alike–and it’s very likely that oil production will drop. This drop, however, will not be too significant, especially in the current state of oversupply. The Financial Times last week quoted analysts as estimating that irregular power outages could lead to a daily decline in oil output […]

China Stockpiling Oil At Highest Rate In Over A Decade

China might be in the midst of another round of stockpiling, stepping up crude oil imports to fill its strategic petroleum reserve (SPR). The slowdown in oil demand in China is one of the chief concerns regarding the state of oversupply in global oil markets. Excess production has driven down prices, but soft demand in China over the past year or so has led to a protracted recovery. After a period of softness, oil imports could be rising once again. Bloomberg reports that the number of oil supertankers docking at Chinese ports is at a 16-month high. And there are 83 supertankers currently on their way to China, with a capacity of 166 million barrels of crude, the highest number in four months. In the first quarter of this year China diverted about 787,000 barrels per day into its strategic stockpile, the highest rate since Bloomberg has been tracking […]

Indonesia OPEC Governor: No Urgency To Freeze Output With Oil At $45

Indonesia’s governor to the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries said on Monday that oil at $45 a barrel was “not bad” and that there would be no urgency to freeze output if crude remained at that price. Despite failure to reach a deal to curb oil output and support prices at an April 17 meeting of OPEC and non-OPEC producers, crude prices have maintained a general upward trend since hitting a 12-year trough in mid-January. Front-month Brent crude was trading at $44.75 per barrel at 0752 GMT, down 36 cents, or 0.8 percent, from its last settlement as traders took profits after three weeks of gains. “The price is $45, which is not […]

China Bans Some New Coal Power Plants

China’s government is banning construction of new coal-fired power plants in areas with surplus power supply, a move that could weigh on already-struggling coal markets . The new measures outlined Monday by China’s top economic planner, the National Development and Reform Commission, underscore the central government’s deep concern with overcapacity across China’s economy, a result of weakening industrial demand as growth slows. Beijing has previously said it aimed to curb thermal power overcapacity ; analysts said the fact that it now came from an official NDRC communiqué was the clearest signal yet that it won’t tolerate new coal capacity in regions that already have excess supply. Weaker demand for coal inside China could ultimately lead to higher exports, which would exacerbate the huge supplies of coal sloshing around global markets. The higher supplies could drive down global benchmark prices and hit the bottom lines of major U.S. and international […]

Believe it or Not; #India Cooks at Unbelievable 45.8 Degrees Celsius


Temporary relief in Bhubaneswar from the deadly heat  

Forcing Odisha government to shut down its grievance cell and schools till April 20, the heatwave in Bhubaneswar has given temporary relief to the residents. The day temperature has witnessed a drop -marginal though- only to be accompanied by high humidity.

Odisha heat wave

Owing to comparatively cool and moist southerly winds, the city has seen a drop of 3 degrees in its day temperature. Though the temperature has come down to 42.9°C from the all-time highest 45.8°C, heatwave is still persisting in the area as the temperature is still 6 degrees above normal.

This temporary relief is likely to be maintained till tomorrow after which, temperatures will rise again. As per latest reports by Skymet Weather, heatwave will continue to prevail in the region as dry weather is likely to persist till the weekend. 

Tuesday, 26 April 2016

Today's ENERGY News - 26 April 2016

Top Stories 

Halliburton Fires One Third Of Global Staff: “What We Are Experiencing Today Is Far Beyond Headwinds”

In a brutally frank and painfully honest first quarter operational update, Halliburton president Jeff Miller poured freezing cold water all over the “oil is stabilizing, and everything is going to be awesome” narrative. After explaining that the firm has laid off one-third of its global employees, and pointing to the collapse in sequential revenues across every business unit, Miller exclaimed: “What we are experiencing today is far beyond headwinds; it is unsustainable.” Due to the deadline of its merger agreement with Baker Hughes Halliburtion has delayed its earnings conference call until May 3rd and so gave an operational update. The healdlines were horrific: *HAL SEES OVER 30% DROP IN YR GLOBAL DRILLING, COMPLETION SPEND *HALLIBURTON CUT ABOUT 1/3 OF STAFF GLOBALLY *HALLIBURTON CUT OVER 6,000 JOBS DURING 1Q *HALLIBURTON SEES ADDITIONAL 50% DECLINE IN NORTH AMERICA SPEND ’16 *HALLIBURTON SAYS WORLDWIDE RIG COUNT LOWEST LEVEL SINCE 1999 *HALLIBURTON SEES […]

Offshore rig operators reel from oil price rout

In the depths of the ocean off the coast of Uruguay, more than two miles below sea level, the oil industry is continuing to push back the frontier.  Last month a drillship operated by AP Møller-Maersk of Denmark began the Raya 1 well in 3,411 metres of water, breaking the record for sea depth previously set in 2013.  Drilling in such extreme conditions is a remarkable feat, but wells such as Raya 1 are becoming increasingly rare. Technology makes them possible, but economics militates against them.  For the companies that operate offshore rigs on behalf of oil producers — including Transocean, Seadrill, Ensco and Noble Corp — the slump in crude prices since the summer of 2014 has been brutal. They have been reporting large losses, and have cut or scrapped their dividends. Their share prices have plunged.
The impact of low oil prices is often depicted as a battle between Saudi Arabia and the onshore shale producers of the US. But other relatively high-cost sources of supply around the world have also been hit, and for offshore oil the effect is likely to last longer.  The latest data for offshore oil and gas production still look healthy. Last year output from the UK sector of the North Sea rose 7 to 8 per cent, while crude production in the US waters of the Gulf of Mexico rose 10 per cent.

IMF expects $500B revenue loss for Mideast oil exporters

Oil exporting countries in the Middle East lost a staggering $390 billion in revenue due to lower oil prices last year, and should brace for even deeper losses of more than $500 billion this year, the International Monetary Fund said Monday. The fund had projected in October that oil exporting countries in the region would see revenue losses of $360 billion in 2015, but oil prices took a tumble by year’s end and the drop in revenue amounted to $30 billion more. In a revised economic outlook report released Monday, the IMF said these countries will see revenues from oil exports drop even more in 2016, to between $490 billion to $540 billion compared to 2014, when oil prices were higher. Oil prices plunged to around $30 a barrel in January compared to $115 in mid-2014. IMF Director for Middle […]

Middle East Economies Facing Oil Revenue Falls, IMF Says

The International Monetary Fund estimates the Middle East’s oil-dependent economies have missed out on $390 billion in oil revenues last year alone and face up to $150 billion in income losses this year as a result of cheap oil prices. The drop in revenues stemming from the export of oil is the direct result of the plunge in crude prices from around $115 a barrel in the middle of 2014 to below $30 at the start of the year and now above $40, the IMF said. The loss in potential revenues has put an enormous strain on the economies of major oil exporters such as Saudi Arabia and Kuwait who have posted massive budget deficits in the past year. The IMF had previously calculated that the declining energy prices would erase around $360 billion […]

Tesla’s Elon Musk simplifies how dumb our oil dependency is

Image result for elon musk

Both recyclable Now compare how much gasoline is needed for an average car: say 15000 miles / year, 25 mpg, that’s about 600 gallons, or about 3600 pounds of gas per year, which in turn generates about 11000 pounds of CO2 per year. That’s well over twice the weight of the posited automobile, and we’re back to Musk’s original point about burning fossil fuels. [new] Please explain how burning 3600 lbs of fuel What never gets mentioned in this discussion is that once we burn up all the petroleum for fuel, what are we going to use for lubricants? Even electric cars (as well as every other machine on the face of the Earth) need lubrication, and petroleum-based ones are far and away the best, most cost-effective, and long-lasting. Burning it as fuel is stupid and wasteful on this point alone, not to mention all […]


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