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My ASPO Slides are Available

I just learned today that the two presentations I made at this year’s ASPO conference are now available. The slides are pretty self-explanatory, but they only served as background for the talk so people could read through them as I made my points. I intend to write up my notes and post them as time allows.

First up, the slides I presented on the energy information agencies:

The Energy Information Providers

Here is a sample slide from that presentation:

Second was my presentation on biofuels:

Biofuels: Facts and Fallacies

A couple of sample slides from that presentation:

If they make the video available, I will post that link as well.

September 27, 2008 Posted by | ASPO, biofuels, cera, EIA, iea | 137 Comments

My ASPO Slides are Available

I just learned today that the two presentations I made at this year’s ASPO conference are now available. The slides are pretty self-explanatory, but they only served as background for the talk so people could read through them as I made my points. I intend to write up my notes and post them as time allows.

First up, the slides I presented on the energy information agencies:

The Energy Information Providers

Here is a sample slide from that presentation:

Second was my presentation on biofuels:

Biofuels: Facts and Fallacies

A couple of sample slides from that presentation:

If they make the video available, I will post that link as well.

September 27, 2008 Posted by | ASPO, biofuels, cera, EIA, iea | 18 Comments

Live from ASPO


Me With Jim Kunstler at ASPO 2008

Live from the 2008 ASPO Conference, where I am still running on European time (waking up at 3 a.m. and dead tired by 8 p.m.). The talk of the conference so far is on the proposed $700 billion bailout of the financial services sector, and whether this may be just the tip of the iceberg. This is the same sort of bailout that I think is eventually destined to happen to some of the biofuels sectors that have had mandated expansions. When it becomes clear that they aren’t doing much about our dependence on foreign oil or fossil fuels, support will likely dwindle. But it would be devastating for the Midwest to just let these companies fail en masse, hence there will be a lot of pressure to bail them out.

Yesterday was a light day at the conference, with several sessions running in parallel. I gave a talk on the energy information agencies, which I will write up as an essay as soon as time allows. I have had a chance to meet a lot of people that up to now I only knew by name. I got to have lunch yesterday with Jim Kunstler, author of The Long Emergency, and during the Q&A following my talk someone pointed out that Matt Simmons, author of Twilight in the Desert, was standing at the back of the room. Both of those books really had an impact on me (for several reasons, and not because I accepted all of their conclusions) and it was a pleasure to see them in person.

In energy news, gas prices are beginning to ease off, but there are also a number of reports of gasoline shortages in the south. I expect this situation to improve – not get worse as I have heard a number of people suggest – in the coming week. However, if we have another hurricane in the gulf a week from now, I expect that we will see shortages that haven’t been seen since the early 70’s.

Comments from me will continue to be sporadic until late in the week. At that point, things should start to get back to normal. My talk on biofuels takes place tomorrow. I will try to cover the world of biofuels in 20 minutes. Here is the outline of the talk as I will present it:

Stacking up the contenders

• Ethanol
– Crop-based (corn, sugarcane)
– Cellulosic and Lignocellulosic (gasification)
• Renewable Diesel
– Biodiesel
– Green diesel (hydrocracked, Fischer-Tropsch)
• Miscellaneous
– ‘Renewable petroleum’
– Di-methyl ether
– Butanol
• Contenders with Promise

Can the U.S. emulate Brazil?

• The truth about Brazil
• The truth about the U.S.

Fact or fiction?

• Anything Into Oil
• Algae to biodiesel
• Ethanol for $1/gal

Where Politicians Fail

Solutions

As with the other talk, I will write this one up and present as an essay.

September 22, 2008 Posted by | ASPO, Jim Kunstler, Matt Simmons | 119 Comments

Live from ASPO


Me With Jim Kunstler at ASPO 2008

Live from the 2008 ASPO Conference, where I am still running on European time (waking up at 3 a.m. and dead tired by 8 p.m.). The talk of the conference so far is on the proposed $700 billion bailout of the financial services sector, and whether this may be just the tip of the iceberg. This is the same sort of bailout that I think is eventually destined to happen to some of the biofuels sectors that have had mandated expansions. When it becomes clear that they aren’t doing much about our dependence on foreign oil or fossil fuels, support will likely dwindle. But it would be devastating for the Midwest to just let these companies fail en masse, hence there will be a lot of pressure to bail them out.

Yesterday was a light day at the conference, with several sessions running in parallel. I gave a talk on the energy information agencies, which I will write up as an essay as soon as time allows. I have had a chance to meet a lot of people that up to now I only knew by name. I got to have lunch yesterday with Jim Kunstler, author of The Long Emergency, and during the Q&A following my talk someone pointed out that Matt Simmons, author of Twilight in the Desert, was standing at the back of the room. Both of those books really had an impact on me (for several reasons, and not because I accepted all of their conclusions) and it was a pleasure to see them in person.

In energy news, gas prices are beginning to ease off, but there are also a number of reports of gasoline shortages in the south. I expect this situation to improve – not get worse as I have heard a number of people suggest – in the coming week. However, if we have another hurricane in the gulf a week from now, I expect that we will see shortages that haven’t been seen since the early 70’s.

Comments from me will continue to be sporadic until late in the week. At that point, things should start to get back to normal. My talk on biofuels takes place tomorrow. I will try to cover the world of biofuels in 20 minutes. Here is the outline of the talk as I will present it:

Stacking up the contenders

• Ethanol
– Crop-based (corn, sugarcane)
– Cellulosic and Lignocellulosic (gasification)
• Renewable Diesel
– Biodiesel
– Green diesel (hydrocracked, Fischer-Tropsch)
• Miscellaneous
– ‘Renewable petroleum’
– Di-methyl ether
– Butanol
• Contenders with Promise

Can the U.S. emulate Brazil?

• The truth about Brazil
• The truth about the U.S.

Fact or fiction?

• Anything Into Oil
• Algae to biodiesel
• Ethanol for $1/gal

Where Politicians Fail

Solutions

As with the other talk, I will write this one up and present as an essay.

September 22, 2008 Posted by | ASPO, Jim Kunstler, Matt Simmons | 17 Comments

Outline for ASPO Talks

I am scheduled to deliver two presentations at this year’s ASPO conference in Sacramento. You can see the agenda overview here. I will be speaking on the EIA, IEA and CERA on the 21st, and then I have a presentation on biofuels scheduled for the 23rd.

For the first talk, the draft of my slides is heavily slanted toward the EIA. I will discuss what they do well (in my opinion they are the best source of energy data around) and what they historically haven’t done so well (forecast). I will also devote some space to This Week in Petroleum.

For the biofuels talk, my slides are roughed out. Below is the outline. If you think I missed something important, let me know. I only have about 20 minutes, so I will be limited to 20-30 slides. I want to cover a lot of ground, which means I can’t delve too deeply.

Here is the outline of what I have prepared. Comments or suggestions are welcome:

Stacking up the contenders

•Ethanol
– Crop-based (corn, sugarcane)
– Cellulosic and Lignocellulosic (gasification)
•Diesel
– Biodiesel
– Green diesel (hydrocracked, Fischer-Tropsch)
•Miscellaneous
– LS9
– DME
– Butanol

Can we emulate Brazil?

•The truth about Brazil
•The truth about the U.S.
•Those pesky differences

Separating fact from fiction

•Anything Into Oil
•Algae to biodiesel
•Ethanol for $1/gal

How Politicians Screw Things Up

Solutions

September 6, 2008 Posted by | ASPO, biofuels, EIA, iea | 115 Comments

Suggestions for ASPO Talk?

I have been asked to give a talk at ASPO this year in Sacramento. Ditto last year for the International ASPO Conference in Ireland, but I couldn’t make it (even though I lived in Scotland at the time, I couldn’t work it in). However, this time it looks like my schedule will allow me to attend. The theme is The Energy Challenge – The Future Starts Now. Here is the Agenda Overview.

As you can see, I got tapped to talk about fertilizer. I contacted ASPO and asked them how it came about that I got assigned to talk about fertilizer, and they said this was essentially a placeholder, and I could change my topic. So, I plan to.

The question is, what do people want to hear about? I have some ideas, but I would like to hear your ideas as well. Have a look at the agenda, see what isn’t being covered that I might be able to cover, and let me know. I don’t want to talk about something so highly controversial as food versus fuel, but I wouldn’t mind talking about Brazil, Peak Lite, U.S. Energy Policy, etc.

What would you like to hear about?

June 14, 2008 Posted by | ASPO, Peak Lite | 30 Comments