Thursday, May 19, 2022

CT Port Authority Wrongly Began $220M Wind Turbine Project

In February 2020, the Connecticut Port Authority, along with Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont, announced a partnership with electric services company Eversource and Denmark-based partner, ├śrsted North America to begin work on a new $220 million wind turbine project in New London, Conn.

The wind turbines would support an offshore wind-to-energy project ultimately capable of generating 4,000 megawatt hours of electricity, the CT Mirror reported.

Half a million dollars later, it’s doubtful the CPA even had the authority to begin the project. According to the CT Mirror, a host of procedural regulations were ignored to fast track the unauthorized project.

The public-private partnership needed state approval for the $220 million project but Connecticut Port Authority never even asked for it, the CT Mirror reported.

When projects like this receive permission from the state legislature, public hearings must be held by the state’s budget writing committees. That also didn’t happen for this project. “There is no record that the [Connecticut Port Authority] had the statutory authority to execute a public-private partnership after January 1, 2020,” the CT Mirror reported.

But they went through with the project, even paying consultants Seabury Capital Group, with ties to a former member of the Port Authority Board, $523,000 as a “success fee.” The fee sounds similar to banned finder’s fees. Then-State Treasurer Paul Silvester went to prison in the late 1990s after collecting such fees.

Government agencies have a fiduciary responsibility to their citizens to follow the laws and spend their money wisely and carefully.


Green Delusions Bring Chaos And Death

It’s one thing when affluent Granola Americans try to green their own lives via expensive organic food, solar panels and electric cars, but quite another when they write their delusional green policy choices into law. Just as reliance on trendy renewable energy helped trigger Texas ice storm blackouts, so too have other government regulations led to serious, pressing problems.

Take Sri Lanka as the first example:

In less than a year since Sri Lanka became the first country in the world to fully ban conventional agriculture, an economic crisis of epic proportions has gripped the island nation, launched waves of protests, and on Monday prompted the resignation of Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa. Sri Lanka’s pivot to organic farming — with a ban on synthetic fertilizers — triggered a drastic decline in the production of critical crops like tea and rice, something that many agricultural experts had foreshadowed for months.

“Predicted” is the word you want to use there. Or “foretold” if you want to be a little grandiloquent and Biblical for dramatic effect.

And lo, just as the prophecy foretold, it came to pass:

Most accounts show that production dropped between 20 percent to 50 percent of what it was prior to the switch, leaving many of the country’s 22 million people in dire straits. These happenings paint the picture of the clear connection between synthetic crop protection products and food security. And not only had Sri Lanka’s ban on fertilizers, pesticides, weedicides, and fungicides resulted in massive food shortages, it also led to the doubling in price of rice, vegetables, and other market staples.

Just as with Lysenkoism or Mao’s war on birds, reliance on delusional theory rather than actual science led to famine and death.

By the time Sri Lanka opted to reverse most of its mandate over the winter, the situation had gone too far.

The turmoil spurred shortages of electricity and other goods and services in Sri Lanka. Many people have died — and scores injured — in economic- and hunger-related protests, and Rajapaksa required a military rescue this week as chaos closed in around him.

Last summer, prior to the changeover to full organic, 30 national experts wrote to Rajapaksa’s brother, President Gotabaya Rajapaksa…

“Would like a side order of Nepotism with your Green Delusion Special?”

…outlining their concern over this seismic policy shift. While they recognize the goals of the president’s program, they proposed a phased, consultative approach — with actual experts — rather than cold turkey, emotive mandates.

“Prior to this policy, the government had unsuccessfully tried to commercialize farm land, which is the biggest commercial asset the country has. So many of us think this was another way to try and get farmers to leave their land, or to weaken the farmers’ position and enable a land grab,” Vimukthi de Silva, an organic farmer in Rajanganaya, told The Guardian.

So just like here, the sheep’s clothing of pious environmentalism hides the ravenous rent-seeking wolf of public subsidy cash grabs.

Closer to home, anti-fossil fuel regulations to fight “Global Warming” have left America dangerously short of refining capacity.

We are now reaching the point where the cost of diesel fuel is making some goods too expensive to transport. One trucker told the Orlando Fox affiliate yesterday that, “The cost of diesel is single-handedly taking us out of the game one by one no matter how big you are. . . . If you’re getting paid $2 per mile you’re not taking that load no matter if it is baby formula or orange juice because the cost of diesel is $5 plus. You just can’t take that load.”

Tractor-trailer trucks loaded up with goods are heavy, meaning that they average “only 6.5 miles per gallon. Their efficiency ranges wildly between 3 miles per gallon going up hills to more than 23 miles per gallon going downhill.” Because of their low fuel economy, trucks have massive gas tanks — tanks with a capacity between 120 and 150 gallons — and some trucks may have two tanks for longer hauls. In other words, on one full tank of diesel, a truck can travel 780 to 975 miles. But as of this morning, filling up the tank for that trip will cost $668 to $836 — a cost of 85 cents per mile.

Keep in mind, “A majority of trucking companies pay [drivers] between $0.28 and $0.40 cents per mile according to the U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics. A few companies do pay up to $0.45 cents per mile.”

The default setting of President Biden, Senator Elizabeth Warren, and a lot of other Democrats is that if something is expensive, it is because some company is being greedy, and that the way to “bring down inflation” to “make sure the wealthiest corporations pay their fair share.”

But the cost of a gallon of unleaded gasoline or diesel fuel is not just a matter of how greedy an oil company feels on any given day and has very little to do with how much that company is paying in taxes. The cost of crude oil makes up 59 percent of the cost of gallon of regular gasoline, and just 49 percent of the cost of diesel. Refining is a slightly bigger share of the cost of a gallon of diesel fuel than of the cost of a gallon of regular gas — 23 percent for diesel to 18 percent for regular, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Distribution and marketing costs make up 18 percent of diesel costs.

And keep in mind, federal taxes on diesel are slightly higher than those on regular gasoline — 24 cents per gallon on diesel compared to 18 cents per gallon on regular.


Those Pushing ESG Lack an Understanding of the Many Uses of Crude Oil

People don’t generally understand the reality today that the primary usage of crude oil is not to generate electricity, but to manufacture derivatives and fuels which are the ingredients of everything needed by economies and lifestyles to exist and prosper.

Energy realism requires that the legislators, policymakers, media and the investment community begin to understand the staggering scale of what decarbonization would truly mean.

ESG Versus Oil

Advocates for divesting from companies involved in the production of oil as part of Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) goals are seemingly unaware that crude oil not used to generate electricity.

In fact, until crude oil is refined it is virtually useless. But once refined, it is a miracle product, with oil derivatives serving as the basis of more than 6,000 products in our daily lives that did not exist before the 1900s, and as the fuels to move the heavy-weight and long-range needs of aircraft, cruise and merchant ships.

Products from crude oil are the foundation of modern society and few consumers are willing to give up those benefits. Access to inexpensive, abundant, and dependable crude oil has been the cornerstone of the Industrial Revolution and humanity’s achievements.

‘Pervasive Ignorance’

Pervasive ignorance about crude oil usage and the desirability of divest from the oil and gas industry could do irreparable harm to it, as well as inflict supply shortages and soaring prices upon consumers for the numerous much in demand products manufactured from crude oil.

Neither solar and wind generated electricity can produce any of the products derived from crude oil, they can only generate intermittent electricity. In fact, renewables cannot exist without crude oil as all the parts of wind turbines and solar panels are made with oil derivatives manufactured from crude oil.

Banks and investment giants that are driving today’s Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) movement to divest from fossil fuels are all the rage on Wall Street as a way of reducing to non-toxic greenhouse gas emissions. It is appalling that both President Biden and the United Nations support the investment community collusion in efforts to reshape economies and our energy infrastructure.

Before divesting in all three fossil fuels of coal, natural gas, and crude oil, where is the replacement or clone for crude oil, to keep today’s societies and economies running?

Looking back a little more than 100 years, it’s easy to see how civilization has benefited from more than 250 leading-edge, hydrocarbon processing licensed refining technologies used by the more than 700 refineries worldwide that service the demands of the eight billion people living on earth with more than 6,000 products made from the oil derivatives manufactured out of raw crude oil at refineries. None of these products were available to society before 1900.

Ending crude oil production and use would reverse much of the progress made over the last few centuries. Indeed the use of petroleum in the early 1900s led us into the power America’s industrial revolution and and victories in World Wars I and II.

The products from fossil fuels have reduced infant mortality, extended average lifespans from approximately from 40 years to more than 80, allowed us to move to anywhere in the world via planes, trains, ships and vehicles, and virtually eliminated weather related fatalities.

‘Banks … Short Memories’

As ESG progresses, banks and investment giants are demonstrating they have short memories concerning the vital nature of petroleum based products to modern socieity.

Efforts to cease the use of crude oil could be the greatest threat to civilization, not climate change, and lead the world to an era of guaranteed extreme shortages of fossil fuel products, like we had in the decarbonized world in the 1800s. This would likely result in billions of fatalities from diseases, malnutrition and weather-related deaths trying to live without the more than 6,000 products currently created from oil derivatives.

Abandoning fossil fuels now would also deprive and/or delay providing nine percent of humanity, or more than 689 million people, in this world living below the international poverty line of $1.90 a day, from enjoying the same products and standards of living wealthy and healthy countries take for granted.

Allowing banks to collude with investment community to reshape economies and lifestyles, in line with the progressive politics of their woke leadership, is an extremely dangerous precedent. Consumers never voted to give banks this sort of control over our world.

For these reasons and more, depriving citizens of oil is immoral and evil.

It is time for the people to demand anti-ESG bills from their legislatures to stop the collusion between big banks and large investment firms, which will inflict even greater shortages and inflation on people in developing countries, and subject people in developing countries to continued, preventable abject penury.

In short, it’s time to ban ESG, not oil.


Energy security fears spark oil and gas supply pledge

Australia’s biggest energy companies say they will ignore calls not to open up new oil and gas fields, describing a “frightening” scarcity of new developments as Russia’s Ukraine invasion sparks the worst global energy security crisis since the 1970s oil embargo.

While the International Energy Agency warned last year that no new oil or gas fields or coal mines should be opened up if the world is to reach net-zero emissions by 2050, Australia’s largest producers say it is vital to develop new sources of supply, with Santos concerned it has already missed opportunities.

“We are watching an energy crisis play out in Europe right now, but we have on our doorstop a prime example of what happens if the energy transition is focused only on stopping new oil and gas projects,” Santos chief executive Kevin Gallagher will tell the APPEA industry conference on Wednesday.

“We’ve had a decade of moratoriums, shutdowns and lockouts in resource-rich states and territories. And, as I have said for a number of years, the resulting scarcity of new developments today is frightening, with forecasts of tight supply over coming years.”

LNG has shot to all-time highs this year, while oil has surged 40 per cent after supplies were effectively shut off from Russia, sparking a battle across Europe and Asia to secure replacement ­volumes.

Woodside Petroleum said a crunch on supplies around the world had elevated energy security into a major issue for both the industry and consumers.

READ MORE:Ditch the ideology on energy policy: Santos chief|Open up new oil and gas fields: APPEA
“I think Russia’s invasion of Ukraine really has catalysed the energy security conversation in a way that it’s not been done since the 1970s with the Arab oil embargo,” Woodside chief executive Meg O’Neill said.

“Nations and political leaders first and foremost think about their home patch before thinking about their role in the global world. And the short-term implication is that there are challenges on reliability and challenges on affordability.”

The scramble for supplies has reignited a debate over energy security and emboldened producers to agitate for opening up new oil and gas fields, despite rising pressure from investors to set more ambitious climate change goals.

A push by activists to exclude fossil fuels was misguided and would simply push supply to rival nations with less stringent pollution goals, said the Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association, the industry body that counts Woodside, Shell, Santos, BP and BHP among its members.

“The focus of our opponents on stopping fossil fuel projects has had no effect on consumer demand, and no effect on emissions reduction. What it has done is to push fossil fuel developments to places such as the Middle East and Russia,” APPEA chairman Ian Davies said.

“This has created a supply crunch and has raised prices, hurting people and economies around the globe.”

Chevron, which operates the giant Gorgon and Wheatstone LNG projects in Western Australia, tipped ongoing price and supply volatility.

“There are going to be ­disruptive forces that move the markets around and energy supply around. Given these types of challenges, we can help to solve the types of problems that we‘re seeing, but there will still be some bumpiness as we make the twists and turns,” Chevron Australia director of operations Kory Judd said.

ExxonMobil Australia said the industry was used to geopolitical ructions and the best way for it to respond was by ensuring sufficient supply in the market.

“We’re putting a lot of focus now on Russia but in the past it could have been Venezuela, it could have been Iran, it could have been Libya. So there are always geopolitical events affecting overall supply and demand dynamics. In many instances we see those reflected in price and supply issues,” ExxonMobil Australia chairman Dylan Pugh said. “It goes back to some of those fundamental principles about continuing to bring on investments and making sure that you have a market that’s not so fragile.”

Chevron also took a swipe at iron ore producer Fortescue Metals after its chairman Andrew Forrest attacked the oil and gas industry for relying on carbon capture schemes to cut emissions.

Dr Forrest slammed carbon capture as unreliable and questioned whether a mass rollout of the technology was going to solve the industry’s pollution problems.

Chevron said its $2.5bn Gorgon carbon capture and storage project under WA’s Barrow Island, which is still only operating at half capacity, was storing the equivalent of Fortescue’s annual pollution each year.

“We’ve injected 6 million ­tonnes of carbon dioxide since 2019 and 2.1 million tonnes last year, and that’s about equivalent to the emissions a company like FMG emits in a year,” Mr Judd told the conference.

“I read all of the negativity around it but I see it happening reliably every day.”

Santos, which is developing several major carbon capture projects, was also set to criticise negativity around the technology.

“The new focus on stopping oil and gas projects in environmentally responsible jurisdictions such as Australia is centred around discrediting a proven technology for low-cost, large-scale emissions reduction – carbon capture and storage,” Mr Gallagher is expected to tell the conference on Wednesday.

“Yet CCS has been done before. We are doing it now in 27 commercial projects around the world. And it works.”




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