Energy Roundup

Been a while since we checked in with the world of energy. So how’s that whole energiewende (“energy revolution”) going over in Deutschland? Yup—it’s still phony. From Politico:

Germany’s green energy shift is more fizzle than sizzle

By Kalina Oroschakoff

Germany’s enormously expensive Energiewende green energy transformation is sputtering. The numbers tell the story. Despite spending about €150 billion and years of political effort to scrap nuclear and fossil fuels and switch to renewables like wind and solar, Germany is expected to fall short on pretty much all its national and EU emission reduction and clean energy targets for 2020.

High power prices, continued coal dependency and a “poor CO2 emissions record” mean Germany is falling behind other countries in shifting away from fossil fuels, according to McKinsey’s new global Energy Transition Index. In Europe, 11 countries including Sweden, Austria, Denmark, the U.K. and France do better in cutting coal dependency and greening their energy systems.

Renewable power last year surged to 36 percent of the country’s electricity use, according to the Agora Energiewende think tank. But while renewables grew in the power sector, they didn’t make major strides in transport or heating, so they account for just over 13 percent of energy use.

“Germany as a pioneering country is on the brink of failure,” Patrick Graichen, the head of Agora Energiewende, said in a January assessment. The European Commission’s latest country assessment, published earlier this month, found that Germany is at “considerable risk” of missing its national energy efficiency target of 20 percent by 2020. . .

“Germany, as far as energy policy is concerned, is the biggest fraud globally,” said an EU official. “The public image of German energy policy is very green, but if you check the data, it’s a different story.”

There’s more epic fail in the complete story. I especially like this line: “‘Germany missed bringing electric cars on to roads,’ said Claudia Kemfert, who runs the energy and transport section at the German Institute of Economic Research.” Um—just where does Ms. Kemfert think the electric car batteries get their electrons from?

Meanwhile, oil prices have been slowly edging up in world markets, to around $70 a barrel or so. Is this the result of OPEC holding to its production discipline? Partly perhaps, but the real reason oil prices are edging up is . . . socialism! In particular, Venezuelan socialism. Check out this chart of Venezuelan oil production from the Daily Shot folks:

Reminds me of the old Cold War era joke about what happens if the Soviet Union took over Saudi Arabia? Pretty soon there’d be a shortage of sand. Or Ronald Reagan’s joke about the two Russians talking: “Is this full Communism at last?” “Oh no—things are going to have to get a lot worse!” Behold Venezuelan socialism: an oil rich country that can’t extract its most valuable resource; a tropical country where they can’t produce enough food to feed its people. Now I hear the Venezuelan government wants to launch its own cryptocurrency. “Kleptocurrency” would be more accurate.

Meanwhile, guess what else is showing staying power in energy: Coal! Even in the United States!

And everyone said Trump was crazy to talk about a coal comeback.

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