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World energy consumption to rise 44 percent by 2030

The U.S. Department of Energy and its Energy Information Administration released the International Energy Outlook 2009, stating that world marketed energy consumption is projected to rise by 44 percent from 2006 to 2030. Total energy demand in the non-OECD countries increases by 73 percent, compared with an increase of 15 percent in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development countries.

Unconventional sources including biofuels could provide nearly half of the growth in global liquid fuel supplies during 2006-30. The report also stated that global emissions of the main greenhouse gas carbon dioxide will jump more than 39 percent by 2030 without new policies and binding pacts to cut global warming pollution.

This latest Outlook shows that the current worldwide economic downturn dampens world demand for energy in the near term, as manufacturing and consumer demand for goods and services slows. In the longer term, with economic recovery anticipated after 2010, most nations return to trend growth in income and energy demand.

Average world oil prices increased each year between 2003 and 2008. Spot prices reached $147 per barrel (in nominal dollars) in mid-July 2008, when they were well above the historical inflation-adjusted record price for a barrel of oil, which was set in the early 1980s. After reaching the July 2008 high mark, however, prices fell sharply. As the world’s economies recover, world oil prices are assumed to rebound and rise in real terms through 2030. In the IEO2009 reference case, the price of light sweet crude oil in the United States (in real 2007 dollars) rises from $61 per barrel in 2009 to $110 per barrel in 2015 and $130 per barrel in 2030.

Biofuels, including ethanol and biodiesel, will be an increasingly important source of unconventional liquids supply, reaching 5.9 million barrels per day in 2030. Particularly strong growth in biofuels consumption is projected for the United States, where production of biofuels increases from 0.3 million barrels per day in 2006 to 1.9 million barrels per day in 2030, supported by legislation in the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 that mandates increased U.S. use of biofuels.


OPEC leaves output levels unchanged

The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) convened its 153rd meeting in Vienna, Austria on May 28. The conference determined that the severe and broad impact of the ongoing global economic downturn has led to a weakness in global oil demand which is likely to remain for some time.

OPEC stated: "Although some recent positive economic indicators point towards the possibility of the recession bottoming-out before year-end, the world is nevertheless still faced with weak industrial production, shrinking world trade and high unemployment: for this reason, the Conference decided to maintain current production levels unchanged for the time being. In taking this decision, Member Countries reiterated their firm commitment to the individually agreed production allocations, as well as their readiness to respond swiftly to any developments which might place oil market stability and their interests in jeopardy. The Secretariat will continue to closely monitor the market, keeping Member Countries abreast of developments as these occur, and the situation will be reviewed at the next Ordinary Meeting of the Conference, scheduled to take place at OPEC Headquarters in Vienna, on September 9, 2009."


NOAA issues Atlantic hurricane season outlook

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) say a near-normal Atlantic hurricane season is predicted for this year. In its initial outlook for the 2009 season, which runs from June through November, NOAA’s National Weather Service Climate Prediction Center calls for a 50 percent probability of a near-normal season, a 25 percent probability of an above-normal season, and a 25 percent probability of a below-normal season.

Global weather patterns are imposing a greater uncertainty in the 2009 hurricane season outlook than in recent years. Forecasters say there is a 70 percent chance of having nine to 14 named storms, of which four to seven could become hurricanes, including one to three major hurricanes (Category 3, 4 or 5).


API objects to Waxman-Markey cap-and-trade proposal

The American Petroleum Institute issued the following statement from President Jack Gerard on approval by the House Energy and Commerce Committee of the Waxman-Markey cap-and-trade proposal:

“While the bill has laudable environmental and economic goals, its inequitable system of allocations remains intact and if enacted would have a disproportionate adverse impact on consumers, businesses and producers of gasoline, diesel fuel, jet fuel, crude oil and natural gas.

“There is time to get this right. As the bill moves to the full House, we ask lawmakers to look at all the consequences of the bill, consider the implications on ordinary Americans at a time of economic hardship, and come up with an equitable plan that will address global climate change and improve, not weaken, our nation’s energy and economic security.

As a recent independent analysis shows, this inequitable approach, by itself, will produce additional unemployment, driving annual job destruction totals related to the legislation to more than one million. Another independent study projects job losses more than double this – up to 2.7 million net jobs lost annually, even with new green jobs created. According to one of these reports, an average family will pay an additional $1,500 a year for energy and 74 percent more for gasoline. Today, that would mean gasoline prices above $4.00 a gallon, an increase nearly equivalent to a ten-fold rise in the federal gasoline tax.”

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The American Coalition for Ethanol publishes Ethanol Today magazine each month to cover the biofuels industryís hot topics, including cellulosic ethanol, E85, corn ethanol, food versus fuel, ethanolís carbon footprint, E10, E15, and mid-range ethanol blends.
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