In the Pipeline: 4/19/11

It’s amazing to watch the transformation of an entrepreneur into rent seeker Business Week (4/19/11) reports: Google Inc. has invested another $100 million in a clean energy project. The funding for the Shepherds Flat Wind Farm in Oregon brings Google’s total clean energy investments to more than $350 million and represents the company’s latest attempt to support reliable new ways to power its expanding data centers…Data centers, or server farms, are notorious power hogs. And Google has many of them. The simple act of typing in a Google search taps into Google’s computing resources — and the grid that supplies energy to those machines…Google also invested last year in a project to line the sea floor off the East Coast with electrical cables to send power from offshore wind farms back onto land. Building capacity is one of the major costs of clean energy projects. Google has also invested in solar energy.

Now serving Columbia. I wonder what number the U.S. pulled? CNS News (4/19/11) reports: The U.S. Export-Import Bank, an independent agency of the federal government, is now planning a $2.84-billion loan for a massive project to expand and upgrade an oil refinery–in Cartagena, Colombia…The money would go to Reficar, a wholly owned subsidiary of Ecopetrol, the Colombian national oil company…“This is part of a $5.18 billion refinery and upgrade project in Cartagena, Colombia supplying petroleum products to the domestic and export markets,” the Export-Import Bank said in a statement…The U.S. government-controlled bank says the $2.84-billion in financing it plans to undertake will be the second largest project it has ever done. The largest was $3 billion in financing for a liquid natural gas project in Papua New Guinea.

Double stamp, no take-backs: UK solar companies cry foul in court saying the government promised subsidies and they need that money in order to stay in business Bloomberg (4/19/11) reports: Low Carbon Solar U.K. Ltd., Element Power Ltd. and eight other companies and people asked a British court to review U.K. Energy and Climate Change Secretary Chris Huhne’s decision to reexamine solar subsidies…The government in March said it may cut subsidies for bigger solar projects by as much as 72 percent after announcing a comprehensive review in February of feed-in tariffs, or guaranteed prices paid for electricity from renewables. The ministry Huhne leads wants to prevent large solar farms from taking money earmarked for rooftop installations…The companies said today in an e-mailed statement that the government had set “clear expectations” that a first review wouldn’t take place until 2012, with subsidies changing in 2013. They also said the Department of Energy and Climate Change never said what the trigger would be for an early review…“In pulling back on a commitment to support solar energy, the government will cause the abandonment of hundreds of community-scale schemes,” said Mark Shorrock, chief executive of Low Carbon Solar. “The cost of not getting this right now, aside from the government meeting its climate change targets, include the creation of new jobs, a diversified income for farmers and landowners, reduced energy costs for businesses and the provision of more secure and reliable energy for the U.K.

Global Warming’s new celebrity spokesman, Charles Manson, chastises us for not putting “the trees back that we’ve butchered.” Daily Mail (4/18/11) reports: Crazed cult leader Charles Manson has broken a 20-year silence in a prison interview coinciding with the 40th anniversary of his conviction for the gruesome Sharon Tate murders – to speak out about global warming…The infamous killer, who started championing environmental causes from behind bars, bemoaned the ‘bad things’ being done to environment in a rambling phone interview from his Californian jail cell…’Everyone’s God and if we don’t wake up to that there’s going to be no weather because our polar caps are melting because we’re doing bad things to the atmosphere…’If we don’t change that as rapidly as I’m speaking to you now, if we don’t put the green back on the planet and put the trees back that we’ve butchered, if we don’t go to war against the problem…’ he added, trailing off.

Possible ice breaker for Secretaries Salazar and Clinton, “Name all the areas of the world you’ve shut down for energy production” The Hill (4/19/11) reports: Interior Secretary Ken Salazar and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton are both slated to attend the May 12 meeting of the intergovernmental Arctic Council in Greenland, Salazar told reporters Monday…“One of the items we will be discussing in that forum will be how we move forward with oil-and-gas development,” Salazar said at a press conference on drilling…The intergovernmental council is made up of nations that border the Arctic Circle including Russia, the U.S., Greenland, Finland, Norway and Sweden. It’s designed to enhance cooperation and coordination among Arctic states…Salazar’s actions and comments on Arctic development will be closely watched amid uncertainty about the extent to which Interior will allow oil-and-gas drilling in a fragile region believed to hold massive energy resources…Royal Dutch Shell has for years been seeking federal permission to develop billions of dollars worth of leases in the Beaufort and Chukchi Seas off Alaska’s northern coast, and other companies are also planning exploration. Multiple bills on Capitol Hill are aimed at expediting development in the region.


Speak Your Mind


Anonymous says:
Your email has been received. Thank you for signing up.