Home » Posts tagged 'energy use'

Tag Archives: energy use

Click on image to purchase

Olduvai III: Catacylsm
Click on image to purchase

Post categories

Post Archives by Category

German energy use drops 7% in H1 amid high prices – Ageb

German energy use drops 7% in H1 amid high prices – Ageb

Photo: Shutterstock.com

Photo: Shutterstock.com

(Montel) Primary energy consumption in Germany fell 7% to 1,545 TWh in the first six months of the year, energy statistics group Ageb said on Wednesday, pointing to high energy prices and a weak economy.

“According to the assessment of Ageb, the high energy prices as well as the weak economic development are responsible for the considerable decline in consumption,” Ageb said in a statement.

In terms of electricity consumption, Ageb reported a decline of 6.2% to 251 TWh, with the share coming from renewable sources rising from 49.3% to 52%. Green power use, meanwhile, rose by 0.6% to 306.4 TWh.

Germany aims for a share of renewable energy of at least 80% of gross electricity consumption by 2030.

Fossil fuels plunge, emissions fall
According to the report, lignite saw the greatest decline in consumption, falling by 18% year on year to 130.3 TWh.

Among other fossil fuels, hard coal consumption fell by 10.8% to 138.9 TWh, with the use in power plants dropping by almost 19%.

Germany plans to phase out all coal in power generation by 2038 at the latest, while utility RWE last week reported a 40% year-on-year drop in lignite-fired output in the second quarter.

Natural gas consumption also fell, sliding 10.1% to 403.9 TWh, with Ageb citing flagging demand from the industrial sector as well as households. Accordingly, electricity generation from natural gas fell by 4%, district heating generation by 2%.

The declining consumption of fossil fuels saw energy-related carbon emissions fall by more than 8% in the first half of 2023 compared to the same period last year, Ageb’s preliminary data showed, corresponding to a reduction of 28m tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent.

Meanwhile, Germany exported a net 3.1 TWh of electricity in H1 2023, down from 17.3 TWh in the same period last year.

Last year, primary energy consumption fell by 5.4% to 3,269 TWh – the lowest level since reunification.

The Real New Deal

The Real New Deal

Wassily Kandinsky Succession 1935

While we’re on the issue of the Green New Deal, here’s an article by Dr. D. with an intro by Dr. D., one he sent me in the mail that contained the actual article, and that I think shouldn’t go to waste. I hope he agrees.

Waste being the key term here, because he arrives at the same conclusion I’ve often remarked upon: that our societies and economies exist to maximize waste production. Make them more efficient and they collapse. 

Ergo: no Green New Deal is any use if you don’t radically change the economic models. Let’s see AOC et al address that, and then we can talk. It’s not as if a shift towards wind and solar will decrease the economic need for waste production (though it may change the waste composition), and thus efficiency is merely a double-edged sword at the very best. 

Here’s Dr. D. First intro, then article:

Dr. D: [..] of course there are a thousand things I can say, but I wanted to make just this one point:  that the economy as we know it is prohibited from contracting by its own system structure.  One thing I couldn’t expand on is that I believe it is almost entirely unconscious.  People like AOC, the Aspen Ecological Center, these people have in the back of their minds “What is possible” and “how things are done” and “can I sell this or will people turn away.” 
As I say, the idea of saying, “Everything will be perfect, just live like a Zen Monk” is a non-starter.  Why, I don’t know, as it’s very pleasant and quite provable. 

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

The Need to Limit Energy Use



Energy is arguably the most defining aspect of industrial civilization. For the first couple hundred thousand years of human existence, our ability to affect the world around us was limited by the amount of energy the human body can produce. It is estimated that, on average, a fit laborer can produce about 75 Watts of energy over an eight hour period. To those of us not familiar with energy terms, let it suffice to say that´s not very much energy, at least compared to modern day usage.

Though the elites of past civilizations were able to harness vast amounts of human energy (usually through slavery) in order to build astounding civilizations (think of the Roman aqueducts and the Egyptian pyramids), the majority of our ancestors lived lives that were constrained by the limits imposed by the places and conditions where they lived. They simply didn´t have enough human energy to drastically change the world.

Many scientists who study the history of evolution consider that it was only a matter of time before our species was to make the leap into the world-altering people that we´ve become. A self-conscious brain capable of understanding the world around us coupled with a rotatable thumb that allowed us to modify our surroundings was a combination that undoubtedly was to lead us into the modern civilization that defines us.

When our ancestors first discovered how to harness the power of the steam engine in the early 1800´s something changed in our world. For the first time ever, we were able to harness a power dozens of times greater than what we could produce from our own bodies or from the domestication of horses and other draft animals.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Energy round-up: tectonic shifts

Energy round-up: tectonic shifts

Photo credit:   gnuckx

Three things you shouldn’t miss this week
  1. Chart: Is the global economy becoming less energy intensive?

Source: BP Statistical Review of World Energy 2015

  1. Article: Fossil fuel divestment is rational, says former Shell chairman – Mark Moody-Stuart is also worried about the lack of industry progress in addressing climate change.
  1. Article: BP sees ‘tectonic shift’ in world energy production – Energy consumption slows dramatically as China cutback and Opec battle US shale drillers.

This week the latest edition of the BP Statistical Review of World Energynoted two important trends.

  1. Renewables are still the fastest growing source of global energy

In 2014 global energy consumption growth fell to its lowest level since 1998: even better is that renewables made up 30% of that growth. While this is positive, the scale of the challenge can’t be underestimated: BP’s report shows that renewables still contribute just 3% of global primary energy.

Indeed, a new report from the IEA this week called for more policy support for the sector because the current rate of progress is not fast enough to meet the 2°C climate target. For the same reason, a group of scientists and economists led by Sir David King, former chief scientific advisor to the UK government, called for an Apollo-style mission to make renewable power cheaper than coal within a decade.

  1. Global greenhouse gas emissions growth has slowed to 0.5%

However, the emissions figures aren’t as positive as the IEA’s preliminary estimates which showed 2014 emissions stalling at 2013 levels. While it’s encouraging to see emissions growth starting to slow, we mustn’t forget that what we really need is a rapid decrease overall.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…




Why the World’s Appetite for Oil Will Peak Soon

Why the World’s Appetite for Oil Will Peak Soon

The conventional wisdom about steadily rising demand is wrong. Within two decades, global oil use will start to fall.

When it comes to oil demand, the conventional wisdom is clear: Population growth and a rising global middle class guarantee that demand—and prices—will rise over the coming decades. It is a story line that is almost universally accepted by investors, governments and industry alike.

But like many such consensus views, it is one that should be treated with caution.

The world’s economy is experiencing transformational changes that, I believe, will dramatically alter patterns of energy use over the next 20 years. Exponential gains in industrial productivity, software-assisted logistics, rapid urbanization, increased political turmoil in key regions of the developing world, and large bets on renewable energy are among the many factors that will combine to slow the previous breakneck growth for oil.

The result, in my opinion, is as startling as it is world-changing: Global oil demand will peak within the next two decades.


A less potent weapon

The geopolitical and economic implications of peaking demand will be huge. The fall in the importance of Saudi Arabia is already palpable, with all the major powers from the U.S. to China more willing to accommodate Saudi archrival Iran. In addition, Russia’s ability to use oil as a weapon will wane, as will the economic leverage of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries. As economic growth becomes increasingly disconnected from oil, world powers will likely shift their attention to other increasingly scarce resources that will be equally critical to economic well-being, such as food, water and minerals. A greater interest in Africa, for example, is already starting to emerge.


…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…


Dramatic UK Emission Drop Just a ‘Taste of What Could Be Achieved

Dramatic UK Emission Drop Just a ‘Taste of What Could Be Achieved

UK greenhouse gas emissions fell by 8.4 percent between 2013 and 2014, according to official figures released today by the Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC). Carbon emissions fell by 9.7 percent.

A 23 percent reduction in coal use and record warm temperatures were the main contributors to the decline in emissions. Continued falls in energy use were also a factor.

This dramatic drop in emissions is the largest on record for a growing UK economy. In fact, the economy grew faster in 2014 than it has in any year since 2007.

Economic Growth

It is extremely rare that emission reductions of more than 5 percent per year occur without an economic recession.

This is further evidence, if it was needed, that efforts to cut carbon pollution and boost our economy can go hand in hand,” said Doug Parr, chief scientist at Greenpeace UK.

DECC’s figures follow recent estimates by the International Energy Agency that global CO2 emissions stalled in 2014 during a period of global economic growth. If confirmed, it would be the first time in 40 years when a growing global economy was not accompanied by rising emissions.


…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Charts showing the long-term GDP-energy tie (Part 2 – A New Theory of Energy and the Economy)

Charts showing the long-term GDP-energy tie (Part 2 – A New Theory of Energy and the Economy)

In Part 1 of this series, I talked about why cheap fuels act to create economic growth. In this post, we will look at some supporting data showing how this connection works. The data is over a very long time period–some of it going back to the Year 1 C. E.

We know that there is a close connection between energy use (and in fact oil use) and economic growth in recent years.

Figure 1. Comparison of three-year average growth in world real GDP (based on USDA values in 2005$), oil supply and energy supply. Oil and energy supply are from BP Statistical Review of World Energy, 2014.

In this post, we will see how close the connection has been, going back to the Year 1 CE. We will also see that economies that can leverage their human energy with inexpensive supplemental energy gain an advantage over other economies. If this energy becomes high cost, we will see that countries lose their advantage over other countries, and their economic growth rate slows.

A brief summary of my view discussed in Part 1 regarding how inexpensive energy acts to create economic growth is as follows:

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

The Most Destructive Generation Ever – The Automatic Earth

The Most Destructive Generation Ever – The Automatic Earth.

I’m afraid I got to delve into a particularly unpopular topics once again today. Blame it on Bloomberg. They ran a piece on the Silent Generation (people born between 1928-’45), which finds it self in a ‘sweet spot’ but refuses to spend enough. A funny problem: the by far richest group in the US doesn’t spend, while those who would like to spend, for instance to build a home and a family, are too poor to do it.

I know I’m not going to make myself popular with what I have to say about this, but then I’m not running for US President, or Miss Universe for that matter. Besides, people should be careful about taking things personal that are not.

My point is that the Silent Generation is by far the most destructive generation in human history, so it should be no surprise they’re also the richest ever. What’s more, the chance that there will ever be a more destructive generation is eerily close to zero, and that uniqueness warrants scrutiny.

My point is even more that the Silent Generation may and will claim innocence wherever they can, but there is no innocence left today. Today, they can all watch their TVs and look out the window and understand that this is not going to end well. Unless the Silent Generation make very substantial changes to their lifestyles and attitudes, they’re inviting a war with their own (grand)children.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Olduvai IV: Courage
Click on image to read excerpts

Olduvai II: Exodus
Click on image to purchase

Click on image to purchase @ FriesenPress