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News Article | January 20, 2016
Site: www.greencarcongress.com

« Leclanché to supply Li-ion Energy Storage Systems in one of largest grid storage projects in North America | Main | Motorola Solutions invests in Mg-ion battery company Pellion Technologies » Battery cost reductions, government funding programs and utility tenders led to a 45% increase in the global energy storage pipeline in the fourth quarter (Q4) of 2015 compared to the previous quarter. According to IHS Inc., the global pipeline of planned battery and flywheel projects had reached 1.6 gigawatts (GW) in Q4 2015. Continued battery cost reduction, government funding programs and utility tenders have helped spark a notable acceleration in the global energy storage market, and IHS recorded an increase of nearly 400 megawatts in the global pipeline during the final quarter of 2015. Suppliers and developers around the world are preparing for a record year in 2016, with significant growth projected in a wide range of regions and market segments. Several large-scale projects were announced at the end of 2015, signaling that the storage industry is shifting from research-and-development demonstration projects to commercially viable projects. These projects include a 90 MW order by major power producer STEAG from LG Chem, to compete in the primary reserve market in Germany, and 75 MW of contracts awarded by PG&E to a diverse mix of companies using various established and emerging technologies. The IHS Technology Energy Storage Project and Company Database currently tracks approximately 900 megawatts (MW) of global grid-connected battery projects that are expected to be commissioned in 2016, supporting a predicted doubling in the global installed base for grid-connected energy storage in 2016. Planned storage installations in the United States will make up nearly half (45%) of planned installations, followed by Japan at 20%. The IHS Energy Storage Company and Project Database is part of the IHS Energy Storage Intelligence Service, which addresses the opportunities and market dynamics for batteries, fly wheels and other distributed energy storage systems.

News Article | December 27, 2016
Site: www.forbes.com

For 2016, one energy story trumps all others: the election of Donald Trump to the presidency, which in so many ways run totally counter to the preceding eight years and the policies espoused by President Obama. 2017 will, no doubt, give us a glimpse into whether the nation is on irreversible course to greener fuels and less carbon or whether Trump is able to slow down that train. That dynamic has enveloped — and it will continue to do so — several critical energy issues, not the least of which is whether the nation will take deliberate aim at cutting its carbon emissions or whether that will be a byproduct of the undeniable shift from coal-to-natural gas. And what role will the courts play in Trump’s radically different energy vision? At the same time, Trump has told unemployed coal miners that "you're going to be working your asses off.” That could involve funding advanced coal plants or expanding the nation’s infrastructure that requires more steel, and thus more coal. What then happens to the green rush — the move to install more wind and solar resources around the United States? It resumes, led in part to improving technologies and declining prices as well as by continued incentives at the state and federal levels. Here are 2016’s top energy stories — issues that will persist into 2017, and beyond: Number Five: The marketplace is demanding cleaner energy, all precipitated by better and cheaper technologies ushered in by progressive public policies. To this end, the utility sector is a major driver: American Electric Power has said it will triple its wind purchases because of favorable pricing. Meanwhile, Xcel Energy is adding more renewables all the time as way to reduce carbon emissions. Berkshire Hathaway’s Mid American Energy is another one beefing up its wind operations in Iowa. And Southern Co. has said it would invest $5 billion in renewables over the next two years. A decade ago, for example, Duke Energy didn’t own any renewable energy assets. Today it owns or contracts for 3,000 megawatts — a number that it expects to increase to 8,000 megawatts by 2020. Its purchase of a majority stake in REC Solar is a primary vehicle to getting there and one that will focus on selling solar energy to small-to-mid-sized commercial customers. America’s Internet dynamos have also pledged to consume nearly all of their electricity from sustainable sources. Apple, Amazon.com, Google and Microsoft filed a brief favoring the carbon-cutting Clean Power Plan. The four own more than 50 data centers in 12 states. Google, for example, is investing $1 billion in hard assets and owning a piece of the renewable projects. Solar is a key beneficiary. According to Greentech Media, the U.S. will install more than 6,000 megawatts of non-renewable portfolio standard utility-scale solar in 2016. That’s compared to the roughly 4,000 megawatts installed in 2015. Still, the growth potential for onsite rooftop solar for homes and businesses is also enormous, largely because of the falling price of solar panels. Number Four: Is Trump the world’s biggest snake oil salesman? Without a doubt, natural gas has replaced coal as the leading fuel used to make electricity in the United States. There’s so much of it, in fact, that producers here want to export it to Asia and Europe in the form of liquefied natural gas. The Energy Information Administration has estimated that the United States has approximately 610 trillion cubic feet of technically recoverable shale natural gas resources. The shale gas revolution will create 1.7 million permanent jobs by 2020, says consulting firm McKinsey and Company. Those benefits are nationwide but they have been especially fruitful for the Gulf Coast and the Marcellus Shale region, where 20 percent of the nation’s natural gas production now occurs. If the shale gas is liquefied and transported, however, it could cause those prices to tick up. That would make coal look more competitive compared to natural gas. When Murray Energy’s Chief Executive Robert Murray was trying to explain all this to Trump during a spring time meeting, the now president-elect thought the export of LNG a splendid idea and quickly added, “What’s LNG?” Just how big is the potential U.S. share of the global LNG market? By 2020, this country could be exporting 70 billion cubic meters by 2025 and 110 billion cubic meters by 2040. “Trump wants America to believe he is not a con man but a political genius,” says Van Jones, president of Green for All. “But he will throw away the biggest opportunity” — the one to research and develop new clean technologies, which will create jobs, cleaner air and water and competitively-priced fuel options. Number Three: Is Trump blowing more coal dust up the noses of miners? In May, then-candidate Trump stood before several thousand people at a campaign rally in Charleston, W.Va., where many coal miners were in attendance. He fed them the same bait that many of the local political aspirants do -- that their woes are Obama’s fault. Environmental rules have been a factor. But what’s eating into coal’s market more than anything else is cheap and abundant natural gas, which West Virginia also has a lot of, and supplied by the likes of ExxonMobil’s XTO Energy, Range Resources  Corp. and EQT Corp. IHS Energy projects a $9 billion infusion into the state by 2035, which will employ 57,000 people in gas-related fields, or 7 percent of the West Virginia’s workforce. But where Trump may make inroads is with metallurgical coal, or coal used to make steel. He could also keep some promises if he could pass public policies to build advanced coal plants that pollute a lot less. “Metallurgical coal is used to make 70% of the world’s steel,” says Benjamin Sporton, chief executive of the World Coal Association. “With the new Trump administration committing to improving U.S. infrastructure, this will no doubt lead to increased demand for steel and the coal it is made from.” That, of course, will require the Republicans to vote for more infrastructure spending, which is something that they rejected under Obama. What about coal used to make electricity? That’s a harder sell — and even one that Murray Energy’s Bob Murray advised Trump to ease up on, especially because no American utility has plans to build new coal plants. Still, if coal could, in theory, be as clean as natural gas, why not go for it? After all, the World Coal Association says that coal is now about 40% percent of the global electricity mix and that in 2040, it will still be 30%. CEO Sporton acknowledges that carbon capture and storage has been an elusive technology but still says that it is within reach. To get there, national governments need to place the same emphasis on its development as they have on the expansion of renewables. Green energies, for example, have received $800 billion in federal subsidies while carbon capture and storage has gotten just $20 billion, all over a 10-year time period. Number Two: Will Trump’s U.S. Supreme Court pick kill Obama’s green energy economy? Quite literally, the High Court is stalemated: like the rest of the country, the justices are evenly split along philosophical lines. And Justice Antonine Scalia’s replacement will tip the balance. It’s especially true for environmental issues now pending in the courts and most notably the Clean Power Plan that would reduce carbon emissions by 32 percent by 2030, from 2005 levels, and the mercury rule that has the potential to cut those insidious releases by 90 percent in the coming years. In June 2015, as we know, the Supremes said that EPA didn’t properly consider cost as it relates to the mercury rules and re-delivered the file to the D.C. Court of Appeals for it to reconsider. In December 2015, that lower court reaffirmed the law. In April 2016, the Supremes rejected a plea from 20 states to block that ruling while the government reconfigures the cost of compliance. Meantime, the D.C. Court Appeals had previously denied a motion by the states that oppose the Clean Power Plan to grant them a “stay” until a definitive ruling could be handed down. Not to be deterred, though, 27 states then petitioned the Supreme Court for a pause until the case is ultimately settled. And in January 2016, the High Court granted the relief. The appeals court new decision is imminent but it is not expected to deviate from its earlier ruling in favor of EPA. A favorable environmental ruling would no doubt get appealed to the High Court, again. And if a ninth justice gets seated during that time frame, he or she could reject the carbon plan and effectively bury Obama’s environmental crown jewell. Number One: President Obama and President-elect Trump will continue to clash, with one trying to preserve an environmental and clean energy legacy and the other trying to plot a completely different course. Indeed, Obama came to office eight years ago on a plan to lift the country out of economic recession, in part, by investing in green energy technologies while Trump has vowed to undo those policies and to rely more heavily on America’s fossil fuels. With that, Trump has picked Oklahoma’s Attorney General Scott Pruitt to be the next administrator for the EPA — a man who has fought to overturn the Clean Power Plan and who has expressed skepticism over manmade global warming. Trump's White House might be able to rollback some rules just enacted but others that have already passed a legal threshold will be a lot tougher. What’s susceptible to change? Experts point to the recent methane rules, which have long been under review but which the Obama administration signed off on in November 2016. In that case, the Obama administration wants oil and gas producers who operate on public lands to capture methane releases from flaring unused natural gas or those that escape during the piping process. Obama has said that it will significantly cut those heat-trapping emissions while also allowing producers to harness the methane for sale to manufacturers and chemical makers. Trump’s team, however, has called the rules onerous and expensive. And just this month, President Obama gave the green movement a very big present when his administration banned oil and gas drilling off the shores of Alaska, as well as on the Atlantic Coast. The question now is whether the president's move will hold -- the White House claims the ban, based on a creative use of the 1953 Outer Continental Shelves Land Act, is permanent -- or whether it can be cast aside by the incoming Trump administration, which has vowed to increase domestic oil and gas production. While Trump’s team might have luck getting more recent actions tossed, legal experts say that getting the Clean Power Plan thrown out will be much harder. That’s because this particular ruling has already wended its way through the court system and is now on its second lap. The biggest victory as far this regulation has been the one by the U.S. Supreme Court that said in 2007 the EPA could oversee carbon dioxide emissions if they deem such releases harmful to human health and the environment. EPA did so in 2009. And it’s so-called “endangerment finding” was also largely upheld by the courts. Elections have consequences. And no where is the difference between Donald Trump and President Obama more evident than in the energy and the environmental fields. While the next four years may not bring many new rules, there also may not be a total repudiation of existing ones: Just as it is a long road to get new environmental regs on the books, it is equally tough to get them off the books, especially those that have tested in the courts.

News Article | October 23, 2015
Site: news.mit.edu

Top government and business leaders meet each year in Houston to discuss the state of the energy industry at IHS Energy CERAWeek, hosted by the information and analytics company IHS Inc. Years ago, the buzz was all about fossil fuels. These days, though, renewables and divestment are lively topics as well. Into that heady atmosphere steps an MIT contingent bringing research news about emerging technologies — and leading discussions of stubborn issues. Lou Carranza, associate director of the MIT Energy Initiative (MITEI) and a former organizer of CERAWeek, first brought MITEI co-founder Ernie Moniz to the main stage in 2007. Now Moniz is U.S. secretary of energy and a regular speaker, while MIT had its own panel of experts on stage at the April conference. Moreover, Carranza arranged for more than 65 MIT alumni from the MIT Club of South Texas to attend the MIT panel for free. Why did MITEI want to be there? “CERAWeek started 35 years ago as an oil and gas conference, but now there is large part of the conference covering renewables and low-carbon energy, which is central to what MITEI focuses on at MIT,” says Carranza. “CERAWeek has become important to us as a way to reach the right audience — government and energy executives at the senior level.” Moreover, the energy industry is intensely interested in science, technology, and engineering education as the pipeline for future innovation and employees. “MIT is a big part of fixing that employee pipeline problem,” Carranza says. “Part of why MITEI exists is for people to self-assemble around their ideas in energy and to link their work to the challenges facing the energy industry. One way MITEI does this is through a first-year fellowship program. Over 300 students have come through that program since 2007.” The MIT session (video), titled "Frontiers of Science and Innovation: What Game-Changing Technologies Are on the Energy Horizon," was chaired by MITEI Director Bob Armstrong, the other MITEI co-founder. The faculty in that session included professors Sanjay Sarma, who addressed the Internet of things and the future of online learning; Dennis Whyte, who gave a talk entitled, "Nuclear Fusion: New Superconductors, 3-D Printing, and Molten Salt Blankets"; Krip Varanasi, who addressed surfaces, interfaces, and coatings; and Don Sadoway, who spoke on electrical chemical pathways to sustainability. Who else played a role for MIT? This year the faculty included Maria Zuber, MIT's vice president of research, who spoke on fossil fuel divestment, and Institute Professor John Deutch '61, PhD '66, who spoke on securing energy infrastructure. MITEI leaders included Rob Stoner, deputy director, who spoke on African power, and Frank O'Sullivan ’04, director of research, who spoke on "Renewables in a World of Volatility." Media play a prominent role at the conference, Carranza says; more than 2,500 articles have been published in 67 countries about the event. In fact, CNBC was reporting live. The morning after Moniz's keynote, he did a live interview with CNBC from the conference floor. Just like an energy star.

News Article | November 11, 2015
Site: www.nature.com

US President Barack Obama’s rejection on 6 November of the proposed Keystone XL oil pipeline may do little to directly reduce greenhouse-gas emissions. But the long-awaited decision — a symbolic victory for environmental groups — signals Obama’s growing ambition to combat climate change despite strong political opposition. “America is now a global leader when it comes to taking serious action to fight climate change,” he said in remarks at the White House. “And frankly, approving this project would have undercut that global leadership.” The 1,900-kilometre pipeline was to have carried crude oil from the tar sands of Alberta, Canada, to existing pipelines in the US Midwest that run to refineries along the Gulf of Mexico. The project, backed by pipeline firm TransCanada, was controversial in part because cumulative greenhouse-gas emissions from tar-sands oil are up to 20% higher than those from conventional crude, on average. Obama’s announcement comes less than a month before the start of United Nations climate talks in Paris, which are expected to produce a new international agreement to combat global warming. The timing pleases environmentalists, who have pushed the pipeline to the top of the US political agenda with a sustained campaign that included public demonstrations at the White House. “Rejecting the pipeline makes it tougher to dig up tar sands that would only add more fossil fuels to the fire,” said Lou Leonard, vice-president for climate change at the World Wildlife Fund in Washington DC, in a statement. “We hope it continues the momentum we’re seeing to ratchet up climate ambition for Paris and beyond.” Republican lawmakers have argued just as vociferously for the pipeline, accusing environmentalists of trying to kill jobs and drive up energy prices. Keystone XL vaulted into the US presidential campaign agenda in 2012, and its spectre will haunt next year’s race to pick Obama’s successor. Several Republican presidential candidates quickly vowed to reverse Obama’s decision on the pipeline if given the chance. “When I'm president, Keystone will be approved, and President Obama's backwards energy policies will come to an end,” tweeted Republican contender Marco Rubio, a Senator from Florida. Obama addressed his critics head on in his White House speech, arguing that there is no economic justification to approve Keystone XL. Oil production in the United States is at its highest level in years, he said, and oil prices have fallen sharply. Obama also noted that the US economy is growing even as greenhouse-gas emissions decline — due in part to his administration’s regulations to curb vehicle emissions of carbon dioxide. Some industry analysts argue that the cancellation of Keystone XL will have a minimal impact on the tar sands’ overall greenhouse-gas output, however, because energy companies can merely ship their product to market by rail or through other pipeline projects that are already in the works. “Keystone was a very prominent project given the symbolic nature it took on, but there are a lot of projects and options out there,” says James Burkhard, vice-president of the energy consultancy IHS Energy in Washington DC. His firm estimates that oil production from the tar sands could increase by up to 25% by 2020 compared to the 2014 level, based on projects that are already approved and under construction. The price of oil exerts the strong influence over oil-sands investment, Burkhard says — but the cancellation of Keystone XL boosts uncertainty about tar-sands development after 2020. And there is some evidence that this uncertainty is already having an impact: on 27 October, energy giant Shell cancelled its Carmon Creek tar-sands extraction project, citing the difficulty in shipping Canadian oil to markets. Another energy firm, Statoil, voiced similar concerns when it cancelled another tar-sands venture last year. Shell is not abandoning Alberta altogether, however. Hours after Obama rejected the pipeline, the company formally launched a project to capture and store more than 1 million tonnes of CO each year at an oil-processing plant in the province. But the Can$1.35-billion (US$1-billion) project relies heavily on subsidies, and there is as yet no plan to make such projects economically viable moving forward, says Simon Dyer, regional director for Alberta at the Pembina Institute, an environmental think-tank in Calgary. Dyer says that Obama’s decision on Keystone XL could help to reshape Canada’s climate policy. The country’s new prime minister, Justin Trudeau, is a supporter of Keystone XL who has also pledged to combat climate change. And Alberta’s new premier, Rachel Notley, plans to release parts of a climate policy for the province before the UN Paris meeting begins. If Canada wants to develop markets for its oil, Dyer says, it has to create a credible climate policy and decide how much of its carbon budget should go to the tar sands. “This is an extremely controversial and polarizing thing to say in Canada, even though logically and scientifically it makes a lot of sense,” Dyer says. “The conversation is long overdue.”

News Article | November 16, 2015
Site: phys.org

It is the biggest source of heat-trapping greenhouse gases that negotiators around the world hope to limit in an agreement to be thrashed out in Paris next month. Demand for coal is leveling off, but it will remain a key energy source for decades, no matter how many billions of dollars of investment go into cleaner energy like wind and solar. Too much of the world depends on it now for heating and power generation for us to suddenly live without it. There are vast parts of the developing world that will continue to see growth in demand for electricity as incomes increase, driving sales of televisions, refrigerators and the construction of highways and malls, said Xizhou Zhou, the China chief for energy consultants IHS Energy. "The cheapest way to provide electricity in many of these places is still coal-based," Zhou said. This underlines the challenge facing negotiators who will convene in Paris Nov. 30 to agree on how to limit emissions of fossil fuels. Scientists say coal, oil and gas emissions, including carbon dioxide and methane, are key drivers of rising temperatures that could lead to intense droughts or flooding of island nations. Abundant and cheap, coal emits not only soot but double the greenhouse gas emissions per unit of energy of natural gas. In recent years, slowing economic growth, gains in energy efficiency and advances in renewable-energy production have dampened demand for coal in key markets. Stricter air emissions regulations in Europe, the production of shale gas in the U.S. and the restructuring of the Chinese economy away from heavily polluting industries are all weighing down on demand. An analysis released Monday by the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis suggests coal consumption peaked globally in 2013 and is set to decline a further 2 to 4 percent in 2015 because of declining consumption by China and other big coal consumers. The institute said China's coal consumption had fallen 5.7 percent from January to September. In the U.S., domestic consumption was down 11 percent and coal's share of the electricity market has fallen to 35 percent, from 50 percent a decade ago. Record-low U.S. gas prices, record expansion of renewable energy and a decoupling of electricity demand from economic growth are "permanently eroding" coal demand in the U.S., the Cleveland, Ohio-based IEEFA said. Still, coal provides more than 40 percent of the world's electricity and 29 percent of its energy supply, second only to oil at 31 percent, according to the Paris-based International Energy Agency. The agency projects coal consumption to continue growing somewhat in coming years, largely owing to increased coal demand in India and Southeast Asia. Coal's future is closely tied to China, the world's biggest coal user, producer and importer. It burns 4 billion tons of coal a year, four times as much as the United States. Coal accounts for nearly two-thirds of China's energy, but in 2014 its coal consumption fell 2.9 percent year-on-year according to official statistics, or 2.6 percent according to the IEEFA report—the first annual decrease in 15 years. A revision to official Chinese data released earlier this year showed the country had greatly underestimated its coal consumption from 2000 to 2013, but still showed a dip last year. Beijing is trying to reduce dependency on coal to ease air pollution by switching to natural gas in major cities. China also has become a leader in clean energy. Last year, it invested more in renewable power and fuels and had more hydropower and wind capacity than any other country, and was second to Germany in solar capacity, according to a report earlier this year by REN21, a Paris-based nonprofit group that promotes renewable energy. The cost of renewable energy is becoming more competitive every year, while coal-fired power plants are increasingly expensive as air pollution controls grow more stringent. "You have got a wave of new technologies and investments coming where historically power grids were heavily reliant on coal," said Tim Buckley, a Sydney-based energy analyst with the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis. The continued development of wind, solar and hydropower is good for combatting global warming, "but that's almost an ancillary benefit—the key drivers are economics, technology, leadership and energy security and air and water pollution," Buckley said. India, the nation with the third-highest carbon emissions after China and the U.S., is at a point where both clean and dirty energy are being scaled up. About a fifth of its more than 1.2 billion people still lack electricity. India plans a fivefold boost in renewable energy capacity in the next five years to 175 gigawatts, yet it is also planning to expand coal power. Coal-fired plants account for about 60 percent of India's installed power capacity. Zhou, of IHS, said the coal industry is waiting to see if a Paris agreement would spur new laws requiring coal plants to limit carbon emissions, in the way they have been required to limit particulate matter in the past. This would mean they either find technology to reduce plant emissions or switch to natural gas or other energy sources. Ultimately, the world needs to decide how much energy from fossil fuels is "reasonable" considering the consumption patterns and development stages of different countries, he said. "But that's a very controversial task because politicians in developed countries may have to bring a plan back to their respective countries and say, 'We have to change our lifestyle. We cannot consume nearly as much as energy as we consume today.'" Explore further: A glance at coal and its role in climate change

Pomar L.,University of the Balearic Islands | Bassant P.,Chevron | Brandano M.,University of Rome La Sapienza | Ruchonnet C.,IHS Energy | Janson X.,University of Texas at Austin
Earth-Science Reviews | Year: 2012

Different types of carbonate platforms formed in the Mediterranean during the Miocene: low-angle homoclinal-types of ramp, distally steepened ramps, flat-topped platforms and reef-rimmed shelves. The critical differences between these platforms result from differences in the capacities of the carbonate systems to accumulate sediments above hydrodynamic base level (ecologically controlled accommodation). The various depositional profiles and facies belt distributions resulted from the interplay between different sediment production and redistribution processes, and the internal architectures resulted from the response of each type of platform to changes in accommodation. Heterogeneities driven by high-frequency sea-level cycles are maximized in platforms ruled by shallow-water, euphotic, framework-dominated production and minimized in low-angle ramps, where sediment resulted from aphotic and oligophotic carbonate production. In the Mediterranean region, there is no direct relationship between type of platform and global temperature, as shown by the coeval occurrence of different platforms in similar latitudinal settings. Although temperature is a key-limiting factor, other paleoceanographic factors, such as trophic resources, may have also been, along with biological evolution, important factors influencing different types of carbonate-producing biotas. © 2012 Elsevier B.V.

The expansion of renewable energies and the increasingly decentralized generation raise serious considerations if the European power transmission network is flexible enough for these changed framework conditions. Modular links of the existing thermal power plants, demand management, interconnections in network and storage solutions are means and ways to solve this problem. The pump storage technology which was used since the 70s in countries like Germany, France and Italy in order to temporarily store nuclear-produced electricity is now becoming the driving force as the most technically developed storage technology. In countries like Spain and Portugal wherein the renewable energies are increasingly growing, the activity in the pump storage area is accelerating. However, environmentally protective concerns and insufficient legal framework conditions endanger a great part of these projects. In the framework of a study, the status and the development of the pump storage power was closely examined by the IHS Emerging Energy Research, Barcelona.

News Article | January 29, 2016
Site: www.ogj.com

North American exploration and production companies enter a year of commodity-price weakness with just 15% of their total production hedged, reports IHS Energy.

News Article | December 20, 2016
Site: www.businesswire.com

CALGARY, Alberta--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The prospect for dramatic changes in transportation has led to increased uncertainty about future oil demand. But the gradual pace of global vehicle fleet turnover and the need for significant upstream investment to maintain existing oil production volumes over the longer term will continue to present opportunities for ongoing expansion of the Canadian oil sands, according to a new report by IHS Markit (Nasdaq: INFO), a world leader in critical information, analytics and solutions. Entitled Where Will Transportation Drive Global Oil (and Oil Sands) Demand?, the IHS Canadian Oils Sands Dialogue report explores the key factors and uncertainties that may shape the future of automotive demand for liquid hydrocarbons—and, in turn, on global oil demand and key sources of global crude supply, such as the Canadian oil sands. While IHS Markit and many other prevailing long-term global energy forecasts expect oil demand to continue to grow over the next two decades, the potential for disruptive changes to transportation—a sector that accounted for half of the 96 million barrels per day (mbd) of oil consumed globally in 2016—have added a level of uncertainty. The report says that the potential proliferation of increasingly stringent vehicle ownership and use policies, changes in consumer behavior, new technologies and the pace of economic growth, as well as the impacts of new mobility models such as ride hailing services and autonomous vehicles are key sources of uncertainties facing global oil demand. The combination of these factors could foreseeably lead to a peak in oil demand or, alternatively, lead to it reaching new heights. Regardless of how these factors play out, the gradual nature of transitions and the long life of the existing on-road fleet means that the impact on oil demand will likely be at a measured pace, the report says. 96 percent of new vehicle sales featured combustion engines in 2016. IHS Markit estimates the average vehicle life globally to be about 15 years, which means that the impact of new vehicle technologies is expected to take time to materially affect the vehicle fleet and overall fuel demand. “When we look at the future of the car and the impact of key factors such as electric vehicles sales, we see the slow turnover rate of the global vehicle fleet muting the effect of new technologies on global oil demand,” said Kevin Birn, director for IHS Energy who leads the Oil Sands Dialogue. “However, the future of the car—and the sources of energy that propel them—is certainly not predetermined and the potential exists for the future to surprise—up or down.” The report also notes that with slower or even flat world oil demand, key sources of oil supply will remain an important part of meeting global oil demand. IHS Markit expects that the world needs to find and replace about 45 million bpd of crude oil by 2040 (more than half of what the world consumed in 2016) to meet demand growth—37 mbd to offset production from declining fields plus 8 mbd to meet demand growth. Canadian oil sands are expected to remain one of the key pillars of global crude oil supply growth due in part to the fact that—unlike most other sources of supply globally—production from oil sands facilities does not decline. The absence of production declines means that each investment in new oil production results in growth, the report says. “Looking ahead to future automotive demand for refined products and, in turn demand for crude oil, it is easy to fixate on one or two factors. But this misses the larger picture,” said Tiffany Groode, IHS Energy senior director. “More likely, the future for transportation will come from a variety of variables, from economic activity and government policy, to shifting consumer preferences. Navigating this uncertainty and understanding how numerous variables will interact and influence one another will be pivotal.” Where Will Transportation Drive Global Oil (and Oil Sands) Demand? and all other IHS Oil Sands Dialogue Research is available at www.ihs.com/oilsandsdialogue. Following on this research area, IHS Markit has launched a major multi-client research initiative, Reinventing the Wheel, to further analyze the deep and potentially dramatic changes occurring in the automotive market. To be conducted over the first half of 2017, this project will provide a first-of-its-kind, system-wide analysis of transportation and the potential implications for the oil, gas, automotive, electric power and chemical industries. Chaired by Daniel Yergin, IHS Markit vice chairman and Pulitzer Prize-winning author, Reinventing the Wheel will focus on the world’s largest automotive markets—the United States, Europe and China, as well as India—with projections out to the year 2040. The study, to be completed in 2017, will consist of two parts. Part I will include the development of scenarios representing potential paths for the future of the car, energy and chemicals. Part II will assess the impact, investment implications and strategic choices for the automotive, oil, gas, electric power and chemical industries. For more information about Reinventing the Wheel, please contact Kate Hardin (Energy), Kate.Hardin@ihsmarkit.com; Bjoern Huetter (Automotive), Bjoern.Huetter@ihsmarkit.com; or Anthony Palmer (Chemicals), Anthony.Palmer@ihsmarkit.com IHS Markit (Nasdaq: INFO) is a world leader in critical information, analytics and solutions for the major industries and markets that drive economies worldwide. The company delivers next-generation information, analytics and solutions to customers in business, finance and government, improving their operational efficiency and providing deep insights that lead to well-informed, confident decisions. IHS Markit has more than 50,000 key business and government customers, including 85 percent of the Fortune Global 500 and the world’s leading financial institutions. Headquartered in London, IHS Markit is committed to sustainable, profitable growth. IHS Markit is a registered trademark of IHS Markit Ltd. All other company and product names may be trademarks of their respective owners © 2016 IHS Markit Ltd. All rights reserved.

News Article | August 25, 2016
Site: cleantechnica.com

Update: Note that transportation just surpassed electricity as the top US source of carbon emissions, counter to a statement and a chart in the following article, which are based on slightly older data. Despite being close geographic and political neighbors, the United States and Canada are facing vastly different climate challenges which are requiring vastly different approaches to climate policy. A new report published by leading global analytics company IHS Markit has analyzed the greenhouse gas emissions profiles of both the United States and Canada, as well as the current state of their climate policies. The findings, despite the close economic, political, social, cultural, and geographical ties shared between the two countries, is that the two nations face extremely different climate issues, which in turn require different approaches in their respective climate policies. Specifically, IHS Markit concluded that climate policy efforts in the United States are primarily focused on specific sectors, whereas in Canada there is a greater emphasis placed on pricing carbon. “How to address climate change has become a defining question of the 21st century and there has been increased policy momentum in both Canada and the United States over the past year,” said Kevin Birn, director for IHS Energy and head of the IHS Oil Sands Dialogue, which produced the report, titled The State of Canada and U.S. Climate Policy. “While the two countries maintain similar policy approaches in several areas, the reality is that each country is also starting to develop its own distinct climate policy portfolio based on the specific attributes of its economies and GHG emissions profiles. There is not a one-size-fits-all approach to reducing emissions.” One particularly helpful example is the manner in which the makeup of the two countries’ respective power sectors differ. As has been widely covered, America’s electricity power generation is the country’s single-largest emitter of greenhouse gas emissions — specifically its electricity generation from coal — accounting for approximately 30% of the country’s emissions total. North of the border, however, 80% of Canada’s power generation sector is already zero-emitting, thanks primarily to a high share of hydroelectric power. Thus, it is Canada’s industrial sector which accounts as the country’s highest emitter of emissions, with 44% of the country’s total. Of additional interest to those who know their Canadian power sources, the oil sands account for 9% of the country’s emissions. The lack of need to decarbonize the country’s electricity generating sector has forced the country to look elsewhere for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, with various models of carbon pricing now advancing across Canada. This has placed Canada at odds with the United States, however, with whom it has often attempted to align policies. “Unilateral climate policy can add costs to domestic export-dependent firms that their competitors may not face,” said Hossein Safaei, associate director for IHS Energy. “Firms that compete globally may physically relocate or lose out to their competitors. This weighs heavily given Canada’s close trading relationship with the United States and its large oil and gas sector which competes globally and with U.S. firms for investment, labor and markets.”   Drive an electric car? Complete one of our short surveys for our next electric car report.   Keep up to date with all the hottest cleantech news by subscribing to our (free) cleantech newsletter, or keep an eye on sector-specific news by getting our (also free) solar energy newsletter, electric vehicle newsletter, or wind energy newsletter.  

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