The Spoils of War 2: Expect Dire Consequences if Syrian Contagion Spreads to Oil

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Among the dismal reports coming out of Iraq, a seemingly minor but highly significant item was news that ISIS and the Iraqi government were battling over the Baiji oil refinery near Tikrit. The Baiji oil refinery, news reports noted, could be a key installation in providing fuel. Indeed, back in the day so-called “insurgents” often […]
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Does a Future Gas Glut Shape Russian Decision Making in Russia-Ukraine Conflict?

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Russia may appear to some observers to have all the cards in its continued negotiations with Ukraine over their high stakes natural gas pricing dispute, in which European gas supply remains a hostage. But long term trends in global natural gas might not be on Moscow’s side. Russia’s willingness to talk about compromise with Ukraine […]
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The "blue" Tesla Model S sedan sits on display in the parking lot at Tesla Headquarters on Friday July 13, 2012 in Palo Alto, Calif. Photo: Mike Kepka, The Chronicle / SF

Commentary: On electric plug-in cars, men and women two different sides of same coin

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In a study based on two sets of focus groups conducted in 2011 and 2012, it was revealed that women and men engaged their electric cars differently despite having similar driving experiences.

IPCC Panel: Big Technological Gains in Transport Technically Possible but Threatened by Institutional, Behavorial and Business Challenges

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This post was written by Daniel Sperling, Director, Institute for Transportation Studies, University of California, Davis. The United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) met last week in Berlin to finalize its scientific assessment of solutions to curb greenhouse gases emissions. One of the key take-aways in the report is the opportunity for large […]
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Russia and Ukraine: The Energy Angle Part 2

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Prior to Russia’s invasion of the Crimea, the United States tried to re-engage Russia as a strategic partner in the Middle East. Moscow has at least one concrete interest that is the same as Washington: radical Islamic jihadism is a national security threat in Moscow. This fact created at least a modest synergy on outcomes […]
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New Geopolitics Means Arctic Oil, Mega-projects’ BAU Could be Uphill

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Western oil leaders may be worrying that Russian President Vladimir Putin’s actions in the Crimea will lead to a ban on international investment in the Russian Arctic, but if it does, that would be doing US companies a favor. The prospects that such mega-investments will remain profitable over 20 years looks questionable at best, even […]
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Russia's national gas company Gazprom, touted in this sign on a building in Moscow, has given Ukraine another week to pay a multibillion-dollar gas bill as price negotiations continue.(Andrey Rudakov/Bloomberg)

Commentary: Russia and Ukraine — The Energy Angle

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Even with all the speculation and debate about Vladimir Putin’s nationalistic motives for Russia’s annexation of the Crimea, there still seems to be room for more thoughtful consideration of the oil and gas aspects of the conflict.
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Natural Gas Vehicles: Good or Bad for Climate?

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This post was written by Rosa Dominguez-Faus, post-graduate research fellow at the Institute for Transportation Studies, University of California, Davis Private businesses, municipal fleets and state governments are increasingly embracing natural gas vehicles (NGVs) as a cleaner, cheaper alternative to traditional oil-based fuels, gasoline and diesel, but new scientific studies are calling into question the […]
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Washington Needs to Embrace the New American Century: More Thoughts on US Exports

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I don’t always agree with New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman but his column today is a must read. In a nutshell, he is arguing that innovation in the United States is driving us to greatness again (shale, the internet of things, 3-D printing, etc.) and potentially fantastic job creation but he notes correctly that […]
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US Export Bans 101: Markets Defy Artificial Barriers

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Environmental advocates weighing in against US oil and gas exports and Keystone XL Pipeline need to be wary. The belief that creating barriers to exports and infrastructure will lock oil and gas under the ground is a misplaced one. Markets will clear, as long as the demand for fossil energy remains.  The United States as […]
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