Alexander's Commentary
Change of face - change of phase
A Future?
Climate-Change – Change of Climate
Oil-Around 2013
Finally there: The Campbell’s Atlas of Oil & Gas Depletion
New time arising
Ein heisser Herbst? (A hot Autumn?)
Where is this going? – 3
Where is this going? -2
Where is this going?
Is it important?
A Moment of Truth at Passing
The Iran Hoax
The 2012 Adventure
Solstice Greetings
Taking on the future
A new beginning
Twist and Turn
Shale-gas: just a gas?
Little miracles, big wonders
Unconventional gas
To Peak or not to Peak, is that the question?
Going on ...
Time for change
Economy; What Economy?
Media Noise Windfall Profit
The Winds of Change
Signs of the future?
Reality and Hope
Best Wishes
What goes around, comes around
A throughout, integrated view
Signs of change?
P.P.P. versus Need
Working for climate-change?
Good signs
Contradicting signals
All over again? The difference between perception and reality.
The paradigm, the mind-set and reality
Two minds
Positive inclination
Different values?
The long view
Leaping to the future
New signs of hope?
A message of hope?
Some good news anywhere?
A project gone awry?
Traces of light
Driving the markets II
Driving the markets
Meeting reality
Silence for the storm?
The times are changing
The Theatre
Some Questions, no answers
Ocean carbon sinks and returns
The good news, the bad and the ugly
A President speaks the truth!
Green masks
Saving us with or from bio-fuels?
The good news
Driving the oil-price?
A new dilemma?
Kenya: a new oil-frontier?
Forecasting a trend?
Some early signs for 2008
2007; A year to remember
The good news
A bit of a shock II
Fraud alert - bogus job ads
A bit of a shock
A simple but far-reaching idea
Hype, Realism, Convergence
A touch of globality
Climate change and changing the climate
Refineries, Biofuels and internal demand
Figures, figures & figures
Pipelines, Biofuels & Reserves
Expectation, projections, contradictions.
A box of Pandora?
Changing systems
A dynamical environment
Projections and reality
Changing reality
A different reality II
A different reality
PPP: Prices, poverty and politics
A whirling 2007
The year of shifting balances
One world, two systems?
Oil and development?
The year 2065?
Mixed signals II
Mixed signals
A War on hold?
No Comment
Changing balances
Truth or Deception?
A fresh overview
Bigger picture first
National Interests vs. Shareholders Value
'The Dialogue'
Do we actually need to worry?

A bit of a shock II


As always, it is very interesting to go through the selection of articles just before the Update, because it gives the main developments in the regions and of the world of oil and gas in concentrate.
And so it was this time as well. In looking for what editorial wanted to be written and sent out this time, I came across three items that stood out as especially noteworthy.

The first was about Hugo Chavez, the much vindicated and often disrespectful-to-existing-interests president of Venezuela. This time he shocked many of his co-oil producers in and outside OPEC by his proposal to sell oil to rich countries for at least $ 100 per barrel and to poor countries for much less, for example $ 20 per barrel.
His idea is to prevent the poor countries becoming the victim of the current oil-price drive and help them to develop, not being hindered by excessive oil-prices. His argument to OPEC was: We can afford it and we should help.

Of course the proposal was not immediately embraced, but the silence that followed the proposal this time was different. It will hopefully make a lot of people think, and maybe something good can come of it, as it would be an unprecedented step towards more justice and fairness in the world.

A second little reminder of the changing times was a commentary about the ongoing climate-change:
“The rise in sea level is now occurring at a pace of 3.1 millimetres, or 0.1 inch, a year, compared with a 20th-century average of 1.7 millimetres a year. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has estimated that in the course of this century, sea level could rise by 80 centimetres, but recent data indicate that this could be a conservative estimate.”

So, whilst only a few years ago a rise in sea level of 30 to 50 centimetres was already considered over the top, now 80 centimetres is considered conservative. It makes me think of the climate-professor that spoke at the Global Peak Oil Gathering in Koblenz in 2004 that we organised: He shocked his audience because he spoke about 1 meter in the coming 50 years. What seemed unbelievable and excessive then may be conservative in a few years.

A third little reminder of the revealing reality of these times was in another little fact: “Operating a 2,400 W fan heater for one hour consumes 0.01 litres of water if wind is the energy source, 0.26 litres if solar is the energy source, 4.5 litres if coal is the energy source, or 5.5 litres if nuclear power is the energy source.”

It becomes clear that as we now discover that most biofuels are environmentally worse if all aspects are taken into account, the “fuels of the future” coal and nuclear will face some trouble in large-scale application as well. The Achilles-heel of nuclear is water, and coal will also face unheard-of difficulties in its expansion as soon as these facts, and the water-shortage that will be a reality in the future, rise to the surface.

Ever more the feeling rises that humanity is being squeezed between a rock and a hard place and that there will be no easy solutions.
The best cards are in the hands of demand-side management.
And irrespective of all media hypes: the average European uses 25-28 barrels of oil per person per year, the average North-American about 35 barrels (not counting energy-usage for wars) and the average Chinese or Indian about 2 -5 barrels per person per year.
It should therefore be obvious where the saving-potential is.

Enjoy the Update, and also have a look at the articles in Features.


P.S.: It would be great if you, dear reader, could let me know whether you sometimes or regularly read these editorials and what you think of them at

Alexander's Commentary

Change of face - change of phase

In the period of July 20 till August 3, 2015, Alexander will be out of the office and the site will not or only irreg

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