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Posts tagged “Brazil”

By Samuel R. Avro on Oct 12, 2011 with 36 responses

This Week in Energy: Gasification, China, Brazil, KiOR

This Week in Energy is a weekly round-up of news making headlines in the world of energy. Most of these stories are posted throughout the week to our Energy Ticker page. The purpose is to stimulate discussion on energy issues. Community members should feel free to turn these into open thread energy discussions. Suggestions and news tips are welcome. I (Sam) can be reached at editor [at] consumerenergyreport [dot] com. Reporting from the Gasification Technologies Conference This week Robert Rapier attended the 2011 Gasification Technologies Conference. This conference covers developments for converting coal, natural gas, and biomass to power and liquid fuels via gasification. Robert provided some updates from the conference on Twitter (@RRapier), including: Shell’s 140,000 bpd Pearl GTL… Continue»

By Robert Rapier on Apr 11, 2010 with no responses

Understanding the Ethanol Tariff Issue

You may have seen the announcement earlier in the week that Brazil has eliminated tariffs on imported ethanol: Brazil Announces Temporary Elimination of Ethanol Tariff WASHINGTON – On Monday, the Brazilian Chamber of Foreign Trade said it would remove the country’s 20 percent ethanol tariff until Dec. 31, 2011, Congress Daily reports. With the temporary elimination of the tariff, Brazil was hoping to pressure the United States into lowering or removing its own tariff and taxes on imported ethanol. Currently, imported ethanol is subjected to a 2.5 percent ad valorem tax and an additional 54 cents a gallon surcharge, which terminates Dec. 31, 2010. The Brazilian Sugarcane Industry Association is urging both countries to eliminate the ethanol tariffs. “Consumers win… Continue»

By Robert Rapier on Feb 4, 2010 with 1 response

Biofuel Developments

I woke up in Switzerland this morning after having spent the past 3 days in the Netherlands. Later today I travel to Germany. The weather here is cold. I love Europe, but do not miss riding my bike in rain that is 1 degree above freezing (as I had to do in the Netherlands on Tuesday). Switzerland is blanketed with snow; the country from the air looks like a Christmas card. I have been told that there is even more snow in Dresden, which is my next stop. I have been trying to keep up on energy news, and there have been some interesting developments. The previous essay has also hit the 200 comment mark (Blogger is clearly not designed… Continue»

By Robert Rapier on Sep 16, 2009 with no responses

Brazil Flexing Its Muscles

A couple of years ago I was thinking about the possible fates of various nations in a world in which depleting oil reserves begin to have a very strong impact on oil prices. I had visions of $100+ oil and eventually $5-10 gasoline, which would place a crushing burden on the U.S. economy. Of course higher prices will motivate people to conserve (and will contribute to recession), and then you may find yourself in a situation in which the supply/demand balance once again tips toward excess supply (as we found ourselves in as oil approached $150/bbl). Prices fall. The economy starts to recover. What happens then? Prices rise, putting the brakes on recovery. This is what I postulated in The… Continue»

By Robert Rapier on Apr 26, 2009 with no responses

More Brazilian Ethanol Whoppers

I have written previously about Brazil’s “ethanol miracle,” and the tendency of the media and various advocates to ignore facts and embrace hype: Lessons from Brazil Vinod Khosla Debunked There are two take home messages from those essays. First, ethanol provides a small fraction of Brazil’s transportation fuel, not 40% as is often reported. Second, the gap between supply and demand is gaping in the U.S., but very small in Brazil. Hence, ethanol is able to play a larger role in Brazil simply because Brazilians don’t use nearly as much energy as does the average American. But it is coming up on 3 years since I updated the numbers, and I have been asked how the numbers in Brazil stack… Continue»

By Robert Rapier on Mar 22, 2009 with no responses

Trying to Make Sense of Ethanol Tariffs

Note that in the following essay, I am not trying to come down either for or against ethanol tariffs, but rather to discuss what I see as the key issues surrounding them. U.S. energy policy is slanted to favor U.S. farmers and ethanol producers, and I am merely trying to explain the tariffs within that context. ——————- You are probably aware that the U.S. imposes a $0.54/gallon tariff on ethanol that we import from Brazil. Brazil’s President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva met with President Obama last week and implored him – in the name of a better environmental policy – to remove the “absurd tariffs on ethanol.” In response President Obama said the situation is “not going to change… Continue»

By Robert Rapier on Mar 29, 2008 with no responses

How Corn Ethanol Destroys Rain Forests

At least according to a new story in Time, which is a blistering critique of our ethanol policies. It also documents the change of heart that has taken place among some prominent ethanol boosters. The Clean Energy Scam In Brazil, for instance, only a tiny portion of the Amazon is being torn down to grow the sugarcane that fuels most Brazilian cars. More deforestation results from a chain reaction so vast it’s subtle: U.S. farmers are selling one-fifth of their corn to ethanol production, so U.S. soybean farmers are switching to corn, so Brazilian soybean farmers are expanding into cattle pastures, so Brazilian cattlemen are displaced to the Amazon. It’s the remorseless economics of commodities markets. It is a sobering… Continue»

By Robert Rapier on Jan 31, 2008 with no responses

Future Reserves

Just going through some files on my hard drive, and I ran across the following story. Unfortunately, I don’t have the source. But it’s an interesting look at where projected future oil reserves are expected to come from. It also reinforces the difficulty that the international oil companies are going to have replacing their reserves – as most of the remaining reserves are in the hands of national oil companies. Who Will Supply the World? Africa The continent has about 10 per cent of proven global oil reserves and 8 per cent of the world’s gas. The biggest oil producers are Nigeria, Algeria, Libya and Angola, which account for roughly three- quarters of Africa’s oil production. West Africa has become… Continue»

By Robert Rapier on Nov 10, 2007 with no responses

Delusions of a Harvard Professor

A lot of people presume that technology is going to provide a nice, cost-effective solution to our energy problems. Who could blame them, when you have people like Ricardo Hausmann, the director of Harvard University’s Center for International Development telling them that it’s all true? Professor Hausmann expressed this view in an Op-Ed piece in Financial Times: Biofuels can match oil production Hausmann, like so many others, doesn’t have a clear understanding of just how much oil we actually consume. As I have pointed out before, the entire U.S. output of ethanol is only equivalent to a single mid-sized oil refinery. The scale difference is immense. And Hausmann’s article represents the kind of delusional thinking that runs rampant among those… Continue»

By Robert Rapier on Nov 9, 2007 with no responses

Brazil’s New Oil Discovery

You may have seen in the news that Brazil has made a new oil discovery. It is always hard to judge how much is hyperbole, but they are excited about it: Offshore oil discovery could make Brazil major petroleum exporter RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil: A huge offshore oil discovery could raise Brazil’s petroleum reserves by a whopping 40 percent and boost this country into the ranks of the world’s major exporters, officials said. The government-run oil company Petroleo Brasileiro SA, or Petrobras, said the new “ultra-deep” Tupi field could hold as much as 8 billion barrels of recoverable light crude, sending Petrobras shares soaring and prompting predictions that Brazil could join the world’s “top 10″ oil producers. “Brazil’s reserves will… Continue»