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Tesla and Oil Transition Theme

August 14, 2013 in Electric Vehicles, EV News, Oil, Tesla

Hyperloop design Image courtesy of Tesla

Hyperloop design
Image courtesy of Tesla

The EV community is amped up for National Plug In Day.  Tesla tweeted: “More than 60 cities have signed up for the 3rd annual National #PlugInDay on Sept 28-29.  Join in on #plugin:”  Certainly, Hyperloop will be one topic of discussion among many, so if you like EVs, you should come join the fun.

Tesla stock (TSLA) dropped sharply today, exaggerating the down move in the stock market.  The shares closed at $139.36, off 4.17%.  Rising interest rate concerns are causing unease in the overall market.  The 10 year Treasury yield has remained around 2.7%, but this is unlikely to last if the Federal Reserve significantly removes its stimulus.

The oil market will likely put a lid on interest rates in the future.  The US cannot grow without cheap energy, so economic growth will be constrained until the US can adequately transition to the new electric era.  Fortunately, the world gladly accepts US Dollars for oil.  Unfortunately, for India, the world does not clamor for the Rupee, which may make the Rupee a major casualty in the currency markets.

WTI oil is currently trading over $107 per barrel, and Brent is over $110.  The Middle East has been heating up again with conflicts scattered across the region.  Bahrain has the latest conflict.  Reuters reported: “Bahraini police fired teargas and birdshot to disperse scattered protests across the country on Wednesday, as Shi’ite Muslims responded to a call by online activists for pro-democracy demonstrations.”  Bahrain is a tiny oil producer, but this conflict is cause for regional concern.

Hopefully, with the Arab Spring in mind, regional leaders will choose to advance democracy quickly and build a more sustainable economic model.  Norway is a country rich in oil, but it also has a well diversified economy and highly stable society.  Democracy, not oil, offers the greatest riches for the people of the Middle East.

Tesla and Musk Hyperloop, Oil Transition

August 12, 2013 in Electric Vehicles, EV News, Hyperloop, Tesla

Image courtesy of Tesla

Image courtesy of Tesla

Tesla stock (TSLA) opened below $150 and has been weak in morning trade.  The stock market as a whole has been edgy in recent days concerning the possibility of rising interest rates after the Federal Reserve starts tapering its stimulus.  Regardless, Tesla remains the great electric hope in a world that uses over 91 million barrels of oil a day (IEA).  Unfortunately, Tesla’s auto sales are still only a drop in a bucket in comparison to the approximate 80 million worldwide annual auto market.

WTI oil is trading slightly above $106 per barrel, which is a rather modest price considering China’s record oil imports in July.  In addition, WTI should be trading closer to parity with Brent since oil inventories at Cushing have been drawn down below 40 million barrels (EIA).  Brent oil is trading between $108 – $109.  The fourth quarter is the heaviest oil demand quarter due to the cold (heating oil fuels) in the Northern Hemisphere, so demand pressure will increase in the coming months.

How should the world transition from oil? 

Mr. Elon Musk plans to reveal his Hyperloop concept today.  As the CEO of Tesla Motors, Mr. Musk is no stranger to the oil and climate dilemmas of the world.  He may feel increasing pressure to work on his Hyperloop idea due to his own convictions.  In Europe, China and Japan, rail networks are already quite extensive and modern in comparison to the United States.  Mr. Musk has proposed that the US initiate a new form of transport, Hyperloop, which he believes would be significantly faster and cheaper than high-speed rail.

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Richard Heinberg

July 18, 2013 in EV Star of the Week

Richard Heinberg Photo courtesy of Post Carbon Institute

Richard Heinberg
Photo courtesy of Post Carbon Institute

Peak oil author, speaker and activist, Richard Heinberg is the star of the week.  Mr. Heinberg is the leader of the peak oil movement.  With the price of oil back in the headlines, peak oil will once again be back in the headlines as well.  World leaders may want to reread that peak oil book.

Mr. Heinberg is the senior fellow at the Post Carbon Institute (PCI):  The PCI website lists Mr. Heinberg’s most famous books:

  • The End of Growth: Adapting to our New Economic Reality (June 2011)
  • Blackout: Coal, Climate, and the Last Energy Crisis (2009)
  • Peak Everything: Waking Up to the Century of Declines (2007)
  • The Oil Depletion Protocol: A Plan to Avert Oil Wars, Terrorism and Economic Collapse (2006)
  • Powerdown: Options and Actions for a Post-Carbon World (2004)
  • The Party’s Over: Oil, War and the Fate of Industrial Societies (2003)

This is the PCI mission statement: “Post Carbon Institute provides individuals, communities, businesses, and governments with the resources needed to understand and respond to the interrelated economic, energy, environmental, and equity crises that define the 21st century.  We envision a world of resilient communities and re-localized economies that thrive within ecological bounds.”

 Mr. Heinberg is a great teacher.  Watch the video:

It is time for cities, states and countries to begin the serious transition away from oil.  Peak oil is reality, and we are living it.  The world economy is set on a course to bust, due to the limits of oil supply.  We can plan.  We can change course.  The greatest waste of oil resources is in the use of petroleum to power vehicles.  There are alternatives.

Video courtesy of Post Carbon Institute