Energy & Resource Protection

No energy surtax planned

After UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres lambasted the global petroleum sector for what he called profiting at the expense of the poor, Canada’s finance department said it aims to ensure everyone pays “their fair share of tax” but declined comment on whether it could impose a surtax on companies reporting huge profit increases. [node:read-more:link]

Ottawa pressed to block LNG projects

The federal government is being urged by a coalition of environmental groups to reject proposals to build liquefied natural gas export terminals in Atlantic Canada on ground the projects would result in “climate-wrecking” emissions. The activists also say there are financial risks association with megaprojects which could take years to complete. [node:read-more:link]

OPEC+ approves small production hike

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies, including Russia, agreed today to increase combined daily production by 100,000 barrels, a fractional amount amid concerns that a global recession will crimp demand. Average crude prices have risen in recent months due to western sanctions on Russian output and although OPEC+ agreed to increase daily output by 648,000 barrels, many countries have fallen short. [node:read-more:link]

Ukrainian nuclear plant “out of control”

Rafael Grossi, Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency, said Aug. 2 that a major nuclear power station in southeastern Ukraine “is completely out of control” since Russian forces seized it shortly after their invasion of the region. “Every principle of nuclear safety has been violated,” he said, demanding IAEA access to the “extremely grave and dangerous” Zaporizhzhya site in the city of Enerhodar. [node:read-more:link]

Trudeau’s turbine decision applauded

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz says Prime Minister Justin Trudeau called Russia’s bluff by allowing German pipeline turbines repaired in Canada to be returned to Gazprom. Arguing that it eliminated a pretext for Vladimir Putin to reduce or stop deliveries of natural gas to Europe, Scholz says criticism of the PM and the federal and his government is “utterly baseless” and he welcomes the prospect of eventually receiving Canadian gas. [node:read-more:link]

Latvia loses Russian gas imports

Natural gas supplies to Latvia have been cut off by the Russian energy giant Gasprom which accuses the EU state of violating purchase conditions without providing details. However, since gas accounts for only 27 per cent of Latvia’s total energy consumption, an economics ministry official suggests Gazprom’s move should not have a major impact. [node:read-more:link]

Russia confirms natural gas cuts

Russia's state-owned Gazprom is halving natural gas shipments through the Nord Stream 1 pipeline to Germany, prompting political panic on both sides of the Atlantic. A U.S. official says the retaliation against western sanctions puts the west in “uncharted territory and has resulted in the administration’s global energy coordinator leaving for Europe today to discuss options. [node:read-more:link]

EU agrees to curb natural gas use

In the event of Russia stopping natural gas exports to European Union customers, the EU says that its members have agreed to reduce usage by 15 per cent next winter while leaving some states to opt out to avoid rationing. The measure would be in effect between August and March but the voluntary aspect would become mandatory if supplies reach crisis levels. [node:read-more:link]

U.S. steps up pipeline security requirements

Updated cybersecurity directives for U.S. oil and natural gas pipelines have been announced by the Transportation Security. Initial plans a year ago were widely criticized and now the CSA says consultations with the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) have resulted in more “technical countermeasures” designed to prevent threats discovered during extended research. [node:read-more:link]

Russia resumes some gas deliveries

After threatening to curb or stop natural gas shipments to Europe, Russia has restarted its Nord Stream 1 pipeline after a maintenance break, but at reduced capacity. State-controlled Gazprom supplied 40 per cent of Europe’s gas last year but the war on Ukraine, western sanctions and President Vladimir Putin’s belligerence has prompted the European Commission to urge its members to reduce consumption. [node:read-more:link]

Alberta minister “amazed” by federal push

The federal government’s push for a new emissions cap for the petroleum industry threatens the industry and thousands of workers nationwide, says Alberta Energy Minister Sonya Savage. “I’m a little amazed by the timing of it,” she says. “It’s tone deaf from the federal government to be pushing this at a time when the world is looking for more energy. And it’s looking like in Europe, they’re going to be rationing natural gas over the winter.” [node:read-more:link]

Freeland defends turbine decision

Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland is defending the government’s extraordinary decision to ship six repaired natural gas pipeline turbines back to Russia despite criticism at home and abroad. “I understand the concern . . . but it was the right thing to do,” said Freeland, who has family roots in Ukraine. [node:read-more:link]

Former CDS Hillier weighs in on turbine decision

Canada's former chief of the defence staff Rick Hillier said July 19 that Canada should not have agreed to return six turbines to Germany needed to keep Russian natural gas flowing into Europe because Russian President Vladimir Putin could see it as a “sign of encouragement" and a signal that western sanctions in response to Russia's invasion of Ukraine could weaken. [node:read-more:link]

Putin weaponizing natural gas supplies

Russian President Vladimir Putin said July 19 that reduced supplies natural gas to European customers is the West’s fault and warned of further cuts. He said capacity could soon drop to 20 per cent if pipeline turbines are not replaced quickly. Germany said today Russia is using the turbine issues as an “excuse” to curtail deliveries. [node:read-more:link]

Europe ready to batten down the hatches

The European Commission asked its 27 member states today to begin reducing natural gas consumption by 15 percent to ensure that a Russian cut-off would not disrupt industries next winter. The EC also is seeking authority to mandate reductions “when there is a substantial risk of a severe gas shortage or an exceptionally high demand of gas occurs, which results in a significant deterioration of the gas supply situation.” [node:read-more:link]


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