Posts Tagged ‘Oil Prices’
6 reasons to use biofuels.
Biofuels is a nickname to renewable fuels from biological source, that can replace fuels that come from fossil fuels like gasoline and diesel. It is now possible to purchase or make yourself biodiesel for diesel engines or ethanol for gasoline engines. The prices are becoming closer to those of fossil fuels and there are many benefit to it. Here I’ll count 7 benefits of biofuels:
1. Availability – It is renewable. Unlike fossil fuels, biofuels can be easily produced from raw agricultural materials. These facts ensure that the reservoir of fuel will never end, and that we can keep producing it, like we produce our food.
2. Price – since the reservoir is virtually unlimited, we can assure that as time goes by, the oil prices will increase duo to the increase in demand/production ratio, while the biofuels prices will decrease duo to the progress in agriculture science and techniques. In a few years from now, it is almost certain that biofuels prices will be much lower than fossil fuels, so the sooner you start using it, the better.
3. Independence –Biofuelsare easy to produce, and propose a new prospect to fuel consumers – unlike today’s when huge company controls the fuel industry and supply, making the small consumer a slave to their will, biofuels will allow individuals and small manufacturer to get into this business and increase the competition. This is good both to the manufacturers and to the clients.
4. Healthier – biodiesel and ethanol are much safer than biofuels – they are much better to the environment, and have a great implication regarding global warming and air quality. If you care about the air that you and your children are breathing, you must take it under consideration.
5. Better to the engine. Biofuels are not only healthier to the environment, but also much better to the engines. Much research done by the automobile industry shows that biodiesel and ethanol increase the efficiency of the engine and it life span.
6. Have good political implications. At present, oil producing countries enclose a huge power in their hands, allowing them to take advantage of their power to harm other countries, and jeopardise world peace. Crossing to a different fuel source will dramatically reduce the pressure of oil deficiency, allowing many suppressed countries to flourish.
I hope that these reasons will capture your attention, to do something in that direction, making the world a better place to everyone.
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Biofuels are when we use organic matter as fuel by converting it into power for use. By producing biofuels, this is an alternative energy source as we depend on fossil fuels. The ethanol products include under its aegis, derivatives of plants like sugar cane, and also corn and vegetable oils, all part of the biofuels umbrella. Not all of them are designed for use as gasoline, although the International Energy Agency (IEA) say that by 2025, 10 % of the world’s gasoline could be made up of ethanol products, and by 2030, it could be up to as much as 30%. At the moment, the percentage stands at just 2%.
A lot of research is going into biofuels, and it will be some time before we can refine them to make them more economic and practical enough to use. Oregon State University have done a study to prove this. Biofuels have not yet been developed which are as energy efficient as petroleum which makes up our gasoline. To put it simply, energy efficiency is how we measure the usable energy that is derived from the input energy by a certain amount. (Up till now we have not come up with any product where the output energy exceeded that of what was input). What is most important is the end product energy that has been converted and its usefulness for our society’s needs, the effort involved is what we put into the input energy so as to produce which is the end-product. A study by the OSU found that ethanol which is corn-derived was only 20% energy efficient (compared to gasoline that is 75% energy efficient and made from petroleum). Biodiesel fuel had a recorded energy efficiency of 69%. Out of the study came one positive thing: higher than nuclear energy which is effectively efficient, was cellulose-derived ethanol charted as 85% efficient.
The New York Exchange has marked a change in oil for the future, with analysts from many countries having predicted surges in the availability of biofuels, which would offset oil prices, seeing crude oil drop to prices of about per barrel on the international market. On the Chicago Stock Exchange there is more investment activity in future markets on grain, making a “steal” on the oil futures of New York, with investors expecting much better profitability from biofuels to come. By 2030, a consensus of analysts have predicted that biofuels will account for 7% of transportation for all round the world. Demand for and diesel and gasoline will slowly fall dramatically according to one energy market analyst, as government supports the use of the more eco-friendly biofuels and subsidise the manufactures of this fuel.
Many nations support the use of biofuels and its production in developement.
Brazil is the biggest in the production of ethanols that are derived from sugars. Approximately three and a half billion gallons of ethanol is produced in a year.
The greatest oil user is the United States, who already come second behind the largest producer, Brazil, in biofuels.
The European Union now have an excess of four million (British) tonnes in biodiesel production capacity, of which 80% is derived from rapeseed oil. The remaining 20% of the EU’s biodiesel fuels is marginally from palm oil and the rest comprised of soybean oil.
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Copyright (c) 2009 Wes Fernley
The recent breathtaking spike in oil prices has finally awakened professionals in the energy field to the very real need for alternatives. As a result, we are seeing liquid fuels developed from plant materials entering the market. Sugar components of various plant materials if fermented will yield an alcohol called bioethanol. Even cellulosic biomass (trees and grasses, for instance) can be used to produce this kind of biofuel. Ethanol, widely used in Brazil as well as in the United States, can, actually, be used in a pure form; however, it is used more as an additive to boost octane in addition to reducing emissions.
Biodiesel, on the other hand, is made from oils—vegetable or animal. Very often, greases are recycled and used for biodiesel. Like ethanol, it can be used in its pure form for diesel engines but is more often treated as an additive. This is the most common biofuel in Europe. The process for producing it from fats and oils is called transesterification.
In 2008, 1.8% of the world’s transport fuel was biofuel. Investment in the production of this new approach to fueling transportation vehicles for the world is expanding rapidly. It was billion in 2007. The liquid biofuels are the most popular ones for these purposes because they can be pumped, and they can directly replace gasoline. Not only do internal combustion engines run cleaner on biofuels, but pollution is also minimized. Biofuels are generally classified as first generation, second generation, and third generation.
First generation biofuels are made from sugar, starch, vegetable oil, or animal fats. Grains such as wheat are fermented into bioethanol; sunflower seeds are pressed to yield vegetable oil for biodiesel. The most common first generation biofuels:
- Vegetable Oil
- Solid biofuels
Second generation biofuels are made from non-food crops such as waste biomass, stalks of wheat, corn, wood, and certain grasses. To avoid the political issues that have arisen from the use of food that is needed for humans and animals to produce fuel, the pressure is on to develop more of these sources. Some of the second-generation biofuels under development:
- Fischer-Tropsch Diesel
- Biohydrogen Diesel
- Mixed Alcohols
- Wood Diesel
Third-generation biofuels are made primarily from algae, which can produce up to 30 times more energy per acre than land crops such as soybeans. However, they have not yet been produced commercially. These are biodegradable and will not harm the environment if they happen to be spilled. Algae can be grown agriculturally. It’s estimated that 15,000 square miles of algae would meet all the needs for petroleum fuel in the United States.
- Agricultural Algae
- Ethanol from Living Algae
- Helioculture (collection of carbon dioxide from the air using solar power)
For the non-scientist, this seems somewhat complicated, but more and more professionals in the appropriate fields are switching to this quickly-emerging industry, and we can hope that many of the problems the world faces now in obtaining energy without jeopardizing our environments will see solutions in the coming years.
Globalisation and the changing role of the Private Investigator
Globalisation has created a dynamic and challenging business environment for everyone. Key contributors to this development in the History of Mankind have been, although not exclusively:
1. The Internet – Developments in communications
2. Greater openness and trade agreement between competing Nations
3.Better accessibility to, and cheaper international travel options
Oil prices have soared from a very flat period toward the end of the 1990’s, to record Highs this year, partly driven by supply demands, and certainly by speculators. Inflation in commodity
prices, have also contributed to the major world economies now experiencing inflationary pressures to a greater extent than ever before.
The recent credit crunch has restricted access to credit for consumers and businesses alike heralds the end of an era of credit based capital growth, or at least for many years to come.
The role of the Private Investigator has also changed to reflect this brave new world. Since the 1970’s, there has been an accepted place for gumshoes in the dark halls of corporate financing, buyouts and mergers, and obviously in respect to corporate recovery. Since the early 1990’s and the emergence of George Bush Senior’s New World Order, the day to day business of running a business has become complicated in terms of law, and the risks involved.
Many a modern private investigator has shifted emphasis from day to day operations involving more domestic and local investigative assignments to international investigations.
These multi-domiciled investigations can be complex and expensive to complete, and accordingly, the skill sets of the investigator have evolved and developed to embrace the new arena. For example, many established detective agencies recruit multilingual staff, from a multitude of disciplines, such as the legal
profession, Information Technology specialists and former embassy staff in order to meet the demands of the client who has a requirement for international investigations.
The new mantle a private investigator adopts is that of a risk consultant; someone who sees beyond the corporate veil to identify and assist clients in mitigating against all kinds of risks, from those involving international trade laws, to arbitration, litigation and asset recovery, not
to mention the burgeoning activity of international fraudsters.
A global economy that is under pressure represents a fertile environment within which the ruthless criminal and opportunist fraudster will operate. Businesses and individuals will be tempted to take greater risks to seek more elusive profits, and it is these false opportunities that the criminal will tend to create whilst intending to permanently deprive their victim of their assets.
In this New World Order, the role of the Private Investigator has become more important than at any time since the days of Pinkerton.
In his recent book, Why Your World Is About to Get a Whole Lot Smaller: Oil and the End of Globalization, former CIBC World Markets chief economist Jeff Rubin suggests that while the world isn’t running out of oil, it is running out of cheap oil.
Rubin predicts an era of triple-digit oil prices that will fundamentally change the way we do business. The economic repercussions of expensive oil, he says, will be the end of and the eventual reversal of the trend towards globalisation.
The days of shipping raw materials halfway across the world to be processed by cheap labour will be over. Flying food from where it is in season to where it is not will be a thing of the past. Locally sourced products will move from being a trendy buzzword to an economic necessity.
We asked our oil analyst Riccardo Fabiani to take a close look at Rubin’s theory and offer some expert commentary.
“Jeff Rubin has some very good points, particularly as he highlights the role of cheap labour and energy in boosting global trade and fostering globalisation.
Unfortunately, his overall theory is based on the premise that oil prices are likely to hit triple digits in the years to come, which, in our view, is unlikely.
Rubin anticipates a new era of oil prices around US0-300 per barrel, which, I agree, would have a devastating impact on world trade and thus on globalisation in the near future.
However, while our team here at D&B Country Risk Services do expect oil prices to increase above US per barrel over the next two years, we don’t see prices getting anywhere close to US0. Simply put, Mr Rubin’s premise does not take into account a series of factors which could exert downward pressure.
First of all, as oil prices are going up again, oil exploration is also resuming and is opening up potential new sources of petroleum. Iraq, for example, has ambitious plans to increase production capacity to 10 to 12-million barrels per day by 2017, up from the current 2.5-million barrels per day, making it, along with Saudi Arabia, the most important producer in the world.
Secondly, high oil prices have already encouraged many states and companies to switch their consumption to petroleum substitutes. This is raising the demand for coal, natural gas and renewable energy sources. For example, the recent commercial exploitation of previously untapped “shale gas” reserves has substantially raised supply and suppressed prices in the natural gas market and is likely to boost the use of natural gas-fuelled cars and power plants, among others.
Finally, we cannot discount the positive impact of technological progress on energy efficiency in the medium and long term.
Taken overall, all these factors are likely to exert downward pressure on oil prices. Without skyrocketing oil prices, Mr Rubin’s scenario of high oil prices causing the world economy to become less globalised is unlikely to occur.”