- Three Decades after the Oil Embargo:
Was 1973 Unique?
A. F. Alhajji.
Journal of Energy and Development, Vol. 30, No. 2. pp. 223-237.
Spring 2005, 2005.
Conventional wisdom states that economic sanctions generally
fail to achieve their objectives; yet it is widely believed
this was not the case of the 1973 oil embargo. A thorough
investigation of events in the early 1970s indicates that
several political, economic, and technical factors made the
1973 embargo unique and its impact appear larger that what
it was. This combination of events might have contributed
to the misperception that the "oil weapon" was successful.
The 1973 embargo is no exception to the conventional wisdom.
It did not coerce targeted nations into altering their policies
toward Israel. The failure of the oil weapon makes it highly
unlikely that current Arab governments would impose another
embargo. However, since the political factors that led to
the previous three embargoes still exist today, "new, radical"
governments in the Middle East may resort to it, not only
to influence the policies of the United States and its allies,
but for its symbolic value in the Arab world.
- Energy Security in a New World Order
Gawdat G. Bahgat.
Journal of Energy and Development, Vol. 30, No. 1. pp. 45-52.
Autumn 2004, 2004.
Oil policy is shaped by economic interests as well as strategic
considerations. In response to rising political instability
in the Middle East since the early 2000s, major industrialized
countries have sought to reduce their oil dependence on supplies
from the region and, instead, develop deposits in other areas,
particularly Russia and the Caspian Sea. This study argues
that production from these two regions is restrained by geological,
economic, and political hurdles. Furthermore, the proposition
that one supplier can replace another one is a wrong proposition.
Today's well-integrated global oil market suggests that availability
of oil supplies, not the source of supplies, is the main factor
to ensure energy security.
- Russia-China-India Energy Cooperation
R. K. Batra and Anurag Khetan.
China Report, Vol. 40, No. 2. pp. 169-183. Apr-Jun, 2004.
Examines the possibility for Russian-Indian-Chinese energy
cooperation, focusing on the key economic issues surrounding
oil or gas pipeline construction. The Russian, Chinese, &
Indian markets are scrutinized in terms of the supply-&-demand
balance for oil & natural gas. Three pipeline route options
are delineated, with the determination of pipeline capacity
seen to hinge on China's anticipated usage. 9 Tables, 3 Figures,
1 Appendix. J. Zendejas.
- Cartel Formation and Oligopoly Structure:
A New Assessment of the Crude Oil Market
Applied Economics, Vol. 36, No. 12. pp. 1355-1369. July 2004,
While economic theorists regard OPEC as a perfect example
of a long-lasting cartel, energy economists strongly deny
such view. Applying the ideas of New Empirical Industrial
Organization, a market description is derived. Cartel theory
and empirical evidence fit together well. Stable long-lasting
cartels can be explained only for subclasses of market models
and exactly such type of model is obtained here. A variety
of different market models is tested. OPEC and the market
for crude oil is best described by a price-leader model.
- International Energy Outlook 2004 and
Projections to 2025
Guy F. Caruso and Linda E. Doman.
Journal of Energy and Development, Vol. 30, No. 1. pp. 21-43.
Autumn 2004, 2004.
In this paper, we present the outlook for worldwide energy
markets. The International Energy Outlook 2004 (IEO2004) is
the latest edition of the Energy Information Administration's
mid-term assessment of world energy markets through 2025.
In this year's report, world energy use is expected to increase
by 54 percent according to the reference case projection.
Gross domestic product is a major driver of the forecast,
but it is also a major source of uncertainty, so we present
our high- and low-economic growth case results to quantify
this uncertainty. The strongest growth in energy use is projected
for the nations of the developing world, particularly developing
Asia, where robust economic growth accompanies the energy
consumption increase. The IEO2004 expects that much of the
energy demand growth over the next two decades will be met
with fossil fuels and that there are sufficient fossil-fuel
resources to meet energy demand through 2025. Oil is expected
to be the dominant primary energy source over the next 20
years, in large part because of rising transportation energy
usage, where there are few economically competitive alternatives
to oil today. The paper also provides forecasts for natural
gas--the fastest growing source of primary energy--and for
coal. We present the forecast for world electricity demand
and discuss the energy sources used for future electricity
generation. The paper ends with a look at carbon dioxide emissions
that would result from the forecasts for fossil-fuel use in
the reference case.
- Oil Prices, Economic Activity and Inflation:
Evidence for Some Asian Countries
J. Cunado and F. Perez de Gracia.
Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Vol. 45, No. 1.
pp. 65-83. 2005, 2005.
In this paper we study the oil prices-macroeconomy relationship
by means of studying the impact of oil price shocks on both
economic activity and consumer price indexes for six Asian
countries over the period 1975Q1-2002Q2. The results suggest
that oil prices have a significant effect on both economic
activity and price indexes, although the impact is limited
to the short run and more significant when oil price shocks
are defined in local currencies. Moreover, we find evidence
of asymmetries in the oil prices-macroeconomy relationship
for some of the Asian countries.
- Perspectives on the Potential of Russian
Clifford G. Gaddy.
Eurasian Geography and Economics, Vol. 45, No. 5. pp. 346-351.
July-Aug. 2004, 2004.
A prominent American specialist on the economy of the former
USSR comments on Russian oil in light of a preceding paper
on the subject. Noting the congruence of Russia's economic
growth with world oil prices, the author points out that the
country's growth is endangered by sharp declines in those
prices. He also recalls how an oil windfall shaped Russian
thinking in the 1970s, questions how long Russia can pump
oil at its maximum level by invoking the American experience
from 1859 through the peak in 1970 until the present, analyzes
the two corporate models in the Russian oil sector, and briefly
outlines Putin's new approach to foreign investment in the
- OPEC versus Non-OPEC
Journal of Energy and Development, Vol. 30, No. 1. pp. 81-89.
Autumn 2004, 2004.
The paper addresses the financial prospects of 17 major oil
exporters in the context of possible global oil market weakness
during the medium-term horizon. That weakness could put renewed
downward pressure on oil prices, potentially straining the
relations between members of the Organization of the Petroleum
Exporting Countries (OPEC), led by Saudi Arabia, and their
principal competitors among the non-OPEC oil producers led
by Russia. The paper concludes, however, the a prolonged price
war between the two groups of countries is highly unlikely
during the medium-term future because very few oil exporters
have accumulated sufficiently large reserve cushions of external
financial assets that would be necessary to withstand a price
war without severely harming domestic economic and social
development plans. The paper finds that the vast majority
of oil producers require an oil export price--in terms of
domestic grades--of at least $19 to $20 per barrel just to
balance the current account of their balance of payments,
assuming crude oil exports volumes at roughly the average
of 2002-2003 and the exertion of only modest government efforts
to contain growth of domestic budget spending. It also calculates
that the "minimum balancing oil price" for the current accounts
of OPEC states ranges from a low of $7 to $8 for Libya to
a high of about $25.50 for Nigeria. Among non-OPEC producers,
the price ranges from a low of $12 for Norway to a high of
more than $35 for Mexico, the most diversified of all the
- Forecasting the limits to the availability
and diversity of global conventional oil supply
J. L. Hallock Jr, P. J. Tharakan, C. A. S. Hall, M. Jefferson
and W. Wu.
Energy (Oxf.), Elsevier Science Ltd., Vol. 29, No. 11. pp.
1673-1696. Sep, 2004.
Due to the critical importance of oil to modern economic
activity, and oil's non-renewable nature, it is extremely
important to try to estimate possible trajectories of future
oil production while accounting for uncertainties in resource
estimates and demand growth, and other factors that might
limit production. In this study, we develop several alternate
future scenarios for conventional oil supply, given the current
range of the estimates of resource availability and of future
demand, and assuming that production will continue to increase
unconstrained by political or economic factors such as deliberate
withholdings or prolonged global recession. Our results predict
that global production of conventional oil will almost certainly
begin an irreversible decline somewhere between 2004 and 2037,
at 22 to 42 billion barrels per year, depending upon how much
oil is available from the earth's crust and the growth rate
in its use. In addition, we found that the increasing domestic
use of conventional oil in oil-producing countries is very
likely to eliminate over time the ability of these countries
to export oil to net-consumer countries, so that the number
of net-exporting countries will be reduced from 35 today to
between 12 and 28 by 2030, and fewer subsequently. The geopolitical
and economic implications of these trends are likely to be
pronounced if reliance on cheap oil is not reduced prior to
- Black Gold: The End of Bretton Woods
and the Oil-Price Shocks of the 1970s
David Hammes and Douglas Wills.
Independent Review, Vol. 9, No. 4. pp. 501-511. Spring 2005,
Economists have debated the causal mechanism by which OPEC
policies of the 1970s contributed to the decade's rise in
prices overall, but all sides have assumed that U.S. prices
indices are appropriate for computing the real price of oil.
This assumption is mistaken and has led economists to overestimate
the benefit that the policies brought to OPEC countries and
to ignore the effects that ending the Bretton Woods Agreement
had on OPEC policies.
- Cyclical Behaviour and Shock-Persistence:
Crude Oil Prices
Ahmad R. Jalali-Naini and Mehdi Asali.
OPEC Review, Vol. 28, No. 2. pp. 107-131. June 2004, 2004.
Oil prices behave differently over different time-horizons.
For the short run, we examine the pattern of movements in
crude oil prices over business cycles and test whether price
increases influence global output and/or are influenced by
economic cycles. For the long run, we focus on whether "shocks"
to crude oil prices are persistent or not. Our findings indicate
that the price of crude oil exhibits substantial cyclical
behaviour, as verified by several tests carried out in this
paper. The VAR analysis indicates that the price of oil is
a pro-cyclical variable. Moreover, the results show that,
while, during the 1972-2003 period (when OPEC exerted more
influence in the oil market), the oil market experienced substantial
fluctuations in price, the price cycles were mean-reverting
and not shock-persistent. This could indicate that OPEC market
power can have stabilising effects.
- China and the Competition for Oil and
Gas in Asia
Henry J. Kenny.
Asia-Pacific Review, Vol. 11, No. 2. pp. 36-47. Nov, 2004.
While its economic dynamism stimulates continued growth in
Asia, the People's Republic of China's increasing demand for
energy is creating intense competition, particularly with
Japan, over international sources of supply. Domestic fields
have generally been disappointing, as have efforts to pipe
gas from Central Asia & Russia to the east coast. Consequently,
China is not only paying greater attention to potential petroleum
resources in the East & South China Seas, but also considering
the vulnerability of its sea-lanes to the Middle East & beyond.
Its need to diversify has promoted closer relations with Central
Asia, the Middle East, & the oil producing countries of Africa
& Latin America, but the jury is out on whether China's concerns
for secure energy supply will lead to international cooperation
against terrorism or fuel the already heated competition for
oil & gas. As China continues to assure its future energy
security in Asia & many areas of the world, sustained bilateral
& multilateral diplomacy to reconcile disputes & avoid conflict
will become more important than ever. 1 Table. Adapted from
the source document.
- Asian Demand Pushes Up Commodity Prices
Intereconomics/Review of European Economic Policy, Vol. 39,
No. 2. pp. 109-112. March-April 2004, 2004.
Dollar prices for industrial raw materials have increased
along a wide front, and oil prices are almost as high as they
were before the Iraq war. Due to the weak dollar, however,
consumers in the euro area have been relatively unaffected
so far. Demand for raw materials will remain strong. Must
we brace ourselves for a further sharp increase in commodity
- Oil Outlook to 2025
Adnan Shihab-Eldin, Mohamed Hamel and Garry Brennand.
OPEC Review, Vol. 28, No. 3. pp. 155-205. September 2004,
This paper presents the OPEC Secretariat's latest outlook
to 2025 for oil supply and demand. The results have been developed
using the OPEC World Energy Model, OWEM. The next two decades
are expected to see increases in energy demand met predominantly
by fossil fuels, with oil set to continue to maintain its
major role. There is also a clear expectation that the oil
resource base is sufficiently abundant to satisfy this demand
growth. Global oil demand rises in the reference case by 12
million barrels per day to 89 mb/d from 2002 to 2010, an average
annual growth rate of 1.5 mb/d, or 1.8 per cent per annum,
over the period. In the following decade, demand grows by
a further 17 mb/d to 106 mb/d by 2020, and then by another
9 mb/d to 115 mb/d by 2025. Almost three-quarters of the increase
in demand over the period 2002-25 comes from developing countries.
In the short-to-medium term, overall non-OPEC supply is expected
to continue to increase--rising to a plateau of 55-57 mb/d
in the post-2010 period. The key sources for the increase
in non-OPEC supply will be Latin America, Africa, Russia and
the Caspian. In the longer term, OPEC will increasingly be
called upon to supply the incremental barrel. Uncertainties
over future economic growth, government policies and the rate
of development and diffusion of newer technologies raise questions
over the future scale of investment that will be required.
These uncertainties, coupled with long lead times, inevitably
complicate the task of maintaining market stability. Medium-term
prospects suggest that there is a need to ensure that spare
capacity is not too high and that it is consistent with sustained
market stability. There are genuine risks of downward pressure
on oil prices, and this could sow the seeds of instability.
- Global Oil Resources: Issues and Implications
Philip H. Stark and Kenneth Chew.
Journal of Energy and Development, Vol. 30, No. 2. pp. 159-170.
Spring 2005, 2005.
Global liquid hydrocarbon resources appear adequate to meet
the estimated demand in 2025 of 120.9 million barrels per
day. But reliable information about petroleum resources and
reserves is required to determine if this target is achievable.
Official country reserve estimates are shown to be unreliable.
A dynamic bottom-up resource estimation methodology, based
on estimated proven plus probable liquids resources in known
oil and gas fields, can generate meaningful results. This
methodology includes estimated reserve growth, economically
recoverable liquids from tar sands or heavy oil, and yet-to-find
resources. Since 1984, new discovery volumes have failed to
replace liquids consumption. However, the combination of discoveries
plus field growth plus heavy oil production has greatly exceeded
consumption. To meet projected 2025 demand, discovery volumes
must rise, new technologies must be developed to increase
recoveries, and political climates that will enhance access
to giant resources in the Middle East and former Soviet Union
will be required.
- California commends economy of 'Green'
Civil Engineering Magazine, American Society of Civil Engineers,
Vol. 73, No. 12. pp. 21. Dec., 2003.
California's Sustainable Building Task Force, a group of
more than 40 state agencies formed in ordere to integrate
"green" building design principles into state-owned projects,
released a 120-page economic analysis in October that indicates
the burgeoning field of sustainable design could dramatically
increase the long-term value of buildings. The study-described
by the task force as "the most definitive cost-benefit analysis
of green building ever conducted"-found that if developers
invest an extra 2 percent of a building's construction cost
in the implementation of green building principles, the money
will be paid back tenfold over the life of the structure.
In particular, the report says, an investment of $100,000
in green building design on a $5-million project "would result
in a savings of at least $1 million over the life of the building,
assumed conservatively to be 20 years."
- Land Preservation: An Essential Ingredient
in Smart Growth
Tom Daniels and Mark Lapping.
Journal Of Planning Literature, SAGE Publications, Vol. 19,
No. 3. pp. 316-329. February, 2005.
The preservation of land for working rural landscapes, wildlife
habitat, urban parks, recreational trails, and protecting
water supplies and floodplains is emerging as an integral
component of smart growth programs. Both the general public
and nonprofit organizations have been willing to spend billions
of dollars on land preservation because of a perception that
traditional land use planning and regulation are not successfully
accommodating growth or protecting valuable natural resources.
The literature on smart growth has largely overlooked the
potential of land preservation to curb sprawl and to foster
livable communities. The literature on land preservation has
focused on the mechanics of conservation easements and land
purchases rather than on how land preservation can fit in
the comprehensive planning process to achieve community smart
growth goals. More research needs to be done on the strategic
use of land preservation in shaping and directing growth as
part of a comprehensive planning effort.
- California's Global Warming Bill: Will
Fuel Economy Preemption Curb California's Air Pollution Leadership?
C. T. Giovinazzo.
Ecol.Law Q., Vol. 30, No. 4. pp. 893-954. , 2003.
In 2001, the California legislature passed AB-1493, a law
requiring substantial reductions in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions
from cars and trucks. AB-1493 is the latest in California's
long history of pioneering regulations to reduce motor vehicle
emissions, a leadership role that Congress encouraged by granting
California a unique waiver to the Clean Air Act's preemption
of state vehicle emissions laws. Yet automakers intend to
challenge AB-1493 as preempted by the Energy Policy and Conservation
Act (EPCA). EPCA sets federal fuel economy standards and preempts
state fuel economy regulations with no exception for California.
Even though reducing vehicular GHGs will likely affect fuel
economy, this Comment argues that AB-1493 should be upheld
against an EPCA preemption challenge. Because every California
emissions law has some impact on fuel economy, there is no
logical way to apply EPCA preemption to California without
eliminating California's CAA flexibility to pass its own emissions
laws. Constricting California's autonomy would directly conflict
with Congress's intent and would impede the kind of state
innovation that should be favored by an administration and
a Supreme Court friendly to federalism.
- The impact of energy efficient house
construction on homeownership costs: a comparative study in
Pierce Jones and Marc T. Smith.
Family and Consumer Sciences Research Journal, Vol. 32, No.
1. pp. pp.76-98. Sep, 2003.
The goal of this study was to determine whether the Energy
Star home program, as implemented in Gainesville, Florida,
is reducing energy use and therefore costs relative to other
homes and the extent of the savings. Analysis of Energy Star
qualified houses found the savings wereappreciable and statistically
significant. The indicated energy savings for the average
Energy Star household were $180 per year, which wascapitalized
to indicate a value increase of the average housing unit of
$4,500 and the ability to afford a mortgage of $2,255 more
than in the absence of the energy savings. The financial implications
of thesesavings suggest that affordable housing policy needs
to factor in continuing ownership costs in addition to the
cost of the structure (the "first cost") associated with purchasing
a home. If the operating costs can be reduced, then the ability
of a household to afford homeownership is improved. (Original
- Green Building Strategies, Policies and
Tools the Canadian Experience
International Journal for Housing and Its Applications, International
Association for Housing Science, Vol. 28, No. 4. pp. 323-345.
A frequent point of debate is the relationship between Green
Building and Sustainable Development (SD). We take the view
that SD is most applicable at the urban or societal level,
since it includes issues of social equity and broad issues
of economics, in addition to concerns about ecosystems and
human health. It is difficult to apply these broader societal
issues to buildings in a practical way and instead, many building
researchers and designers find it more meaningful to develop
models of building performance that is consistent with SD
at the societal level. In short, Green Building helps to support
a broader Sustainable Development agenda. If Sustainable Development
goals are to be truly reached, we could argue that buildings
should consume no energy, water or materials, and should produce
no emissions, noise or waste over their lifespans. While this
is an interesting concept, it is likely that we will have
to work towards more modest goals during the next 20 years.
Even at a more realistic level, there is global interest in
improving the performance of buildings. Governments want to
reduce the use of scarce resources and airborne emissions,
owners want to reduce operating costs, and developers are
finding that customers are demanding higher quality and performance.
l Although the achievement of this goal in different countries
will require varied strategies, it is certain that all will
have to make substantial improvements in the methods used
to design, construct and operate buildings. This will require
interventions by governments, but it will also require that
designers adopt a different way of working. The building industry
is very different from other sectors with substantial environmental
impacts. The performance of automobiles, for example, can
be improved by working with relatively few manufacturers,
but the construction industry consists of thousands of organization,
ranging from very small to very large, and staffed by individuals
whose levels of skills and training vary from very basic to
quite advanced. Buildings are also long-lived compared to
other products, and have to conform to local cultural and
climatic conditions in addition to meeting functional requirements.
All of this implies that initiatives for performance improvement
must be addressed on a broad front. This paper will confine
itself to the range of initiatives that look promising in
the large buildings sector (excluding small houses) and within
market economies. In addition, the discussion will be focused
on measures that apply primarily to the design and construction
stages, for both new and renovated buildings. All the approaches
discussed are based on Canadian experience, but their basic
strategies are of broader interest.
- Environmental Taxes in Europe
Thomas Sterner and Gunnar Kohlin.
Public Finance and Management, Vol. 3, No. 1. pp. 117-142.
This paper provides an overview and a discussion of environmental
taxes in Europe. On the whole, most European countries have
fairly high levels of environmental taxation--at least compared
to the US. This appears broadly speaking to be true of both
tax levels and tax revenues. It is partly related to a greater
reliance on taxes as an instrument of environmental policy
and partly due to a greater acceptance of taxes and maybe
a larger public sector overall. It may also be due to a more
ambitious goal when it comes to reductions in fossil energy
use, particularly for transportation. There is still considerable
variation within Europe when it comes to the level of taxation,
the use of the revenues collected and other issues.
- The USA and Global Environmental Policy:
Domestic Constraints on Effective Leadership
International Political Science Review, SAGE Publications,
Vol. 25, No. 4. pp. 349-369. October, 2004.
During the past three decades, global environmental policy
has increased in salience in international politics. What
role has the USA, a principal actor in global affairs, played
in multilateral efforts to promote environmental protection?
What factors might account for US actions regarding progress
or problems related to global environmental policy? In order
to answer these questions, I examine the role of three principal
actors in the US political system, namely, the American president,
the Congress, and domestic organized interests. This discussion
is followed by three case studies (the Montreal Protocol,
the Convention on Global Climate Change, and the Convention
on Biodiversity) that show the role of these political actors
in shaping US global environmental policy. When the USA provides
leadership, it bolsters multilateral efforts to address global
environmental problems. When it fails to offer leadership,
it weakens that effort. Either way, domestic political factors
(rather than interstate relations) play a central role in
shaping US global environmental policy.
- Ecological Sustainability, Environmental
Justice, and Energy Use: An Annotated Bibliography
Touché George E.
Journal Of Planning Literature, SAGE Publications, Vol. 19,
No. 2. pp. 206-223. November, 2004.
This bibliography brings together diverse literature that
focuses on different facets of ecological sustainability,
environmental justice, and energy use. Inherent general themes
emerge from recognition of the essential linkage existing
between intragenerational and intergenerational equity. Planning
scholars should be especially interested as ecological sustainability,
environmental justice, and energy use are all relevant to
common planning priorities involving equity, justice, citizen
participation, and public health and well-being.
- Axis of Oil?
David G. Victor and Nadejda M. Victor.
Foreign Affairs, Vol. 82, No. 2. pp. 47-61. March-April 2003,
Russia and the United States have settled on oil as the basis
of a new partnership. This move is dangerous, however, because
it ignores the divergent interests of the two countries and
their inability to influence global oil markets. Indeed, war
in Iraq could tear this partnership apart. A far better basis
for U.S.-Russian ties would be the two nations' durable common
interest in developing and safeguarding nuclear power.
- Meeting America's Future Energy Needs
Society, Vol. 40, No. 5(265). pp. 52-56. July-Aug, 2003.
Argues that the US needs to develop a new energy policy now
in order to meet future needs before a crisis occurs. It is
contended that the current debate over a production-oriented
strategy vs a conservative-oriented strategy will become moot
when faced with the challenge of energy adequacy & increased
uncertainties related to the global supply of oil. An overview
of the energy situation in the US is followed by a critique
of "easy sounding" propositions for solving energy problems,
including greater reliance on an information approach to conservation;
using market forces to conserve energy; subsidizing the purchase
of vehicles powered by fuel cells; & constructing more natural
gas pipelines. It is argued that it will take a combination
of suggested measures coupled with new innovations to meet
the nation's future energy needs. Meanwhile, US vulnerability
to aggressive geopolitical pressure from overseas energy supplies
can be reduced by expanding emergency stockpiles; relying
on a greater variety of energy sources; developing the flexibility
to switch to alternative fuels; & maintaining an effective
economic stabilization mechanism. J. Lindroth.
- Performance evaluation of hybrid-drive
buses and potential fuel savings in Brazilian urban transit
Marcio A. L. M. E. I. D. A. De D'agosto and Suzana K. A.
H. N. Ribeiro.
Transportation, Kluwer Academic Publishers Group, Vol. 31,
No. 4. pp. 479-496. Nov., 2004.
Transporting more than 55 million passengers per day, buses
are the main transit mode in Brazil. Most of these vehicles
use diesel oil and this situation causes dependence on oil,
extensive greenhouse gas emissions and increasing air pollution
in urban areas. In order to improve this situation the options
for Brazilian cities include the use of alternative fuels
and new propulsion technologies, such as hybrid vehicles.
This article proposes a procedure for evaluating the performance
of a recently developed Brazilian hybrid-drive technology.
A simple procedure is presented to compare hybrid-drive buses
with conventional diesel buses in urban operation focusing
on fuel economy and the potential for reducing diesel oil
consumption through the use of hybriddrive buses. Field tests
carried out by the authors indicate that fuel consumption
improvement through the use of hybrid-drive buses would certainly
exceed 20%, resulting in lower fuel costs and reduced carbon
dioxide (CO,) emissions.
- Utilization of Biomass as Alternative
Fuel for External Combustion Engines
Ayhan Demirbas and Fuat Meydan.
Energy Sources, Taylor & Francis, Vol. 26, No. 13. pp. 1219-1226.
Because Turkey is an energy-important country, external combustion
engines for Turkey possess strategic importance. Turkey's
annual biomass potential is 32 million tons of oil equivalent.
Gasoline is 9.836 fold more expensive than wood in Turkey.
Railway transportation that operate with external combustion
engines with wood or coal fire is more economic than highway
transportation for Turkey. Thermal energy, produced by burning
biomass and other low grade fuels, can be used for small-scale
power generation using an external combustion engine, such
as the Stirling engine.
- Stable Low-Pressure Hydrogen Clusters
Stored in a Binary Clathrate; Hydrate
L. J. FLORUSSE, C. J. PETER, J. SCHOONMAN, K. C. HESTER and
C. A. KOH ET AL.
Science, Vol. 306, No. 5695, pp. 469-471. pp. October 15.
To increase the feasibility of hydrogen as an alternative
fuel, researchers must find ways to store maximum quantities
of the gas in the most compact space possible. Clathrates
offer a novel form of "molecular storage" of hydrogen. Clathrate
hydrates are crystalline, cage-shaped molecules that consist
of a hydrogen-bonded water-ice lattice that may sequester
one or more types of guest molecules. Clusters of hydrogen
can be sequestered in clathrates, thereby theoretically offering
a mode of hydrogen storage. However, clathrate hydrate molecules
containing hydrogen clusters are stable only at extremely
high pressures. Researchers report the stabilization and storage
of hydrogen clusters in clathrate hydrates at low pressures
through the introduction of a second guest molecule. The researchers
found that a binary clathrate that includes tetrahydrofuran
(THF) as well as a hydrogen guest molecule is stable at much
lower pressures than pure hydrogen (H2) hydrate. The THF/H2
hydrate is also stable at higher temperatures than a pure
THF hydrate. When the THF/H2 complex was analyzed using X-ray
powder diffraction, it was found to have the same structure
as a pure H2 hydrate. The inclusion of H2 in the molecules
was confirmed by Raman and solid-state magic-angle spinning
nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy. The analyses reveal
that H2 molecules incorporated into the clathrate cages remain
in free rotational states, unbonded to one another or to the
water in the clathrate. The H2 clusters are contained solely
within small water cages, while the THF is contained only
within large water cages. The THF/H2 clathrate is stabilized
at a pressures of about 5 megapascals (MBp) and a temperature
of 279.6 kelvin (K).
- Recent progress in the direct ethanol
fuel cell: development of new platinum-tin electrocatalysts
C. Lamy, S. Rousseau, E. M. Belgsir, C. Coutanceau and J.
Electrochim.Acta, Pergamon Press plc, Vol. 49, No. 22-23.
pp. 3901-3908. 15 Sept., 2004.
Ethanol is an alternative choice as a fuel in a direct combustion
fuel cell. Its non toxicity and its availability from biomass
resources advocate its use in a direct ethanol fuel cell (DEFC),
even if the actual performance obtained are slightly lower
than those observed with methanol. By modifying the composition
of the platinum anode by adding tin, it was confirmed that
the overall electrocatalytic activity is greatly enhanced
at low potentials. The optimum composition in tin is in the
range 10-20 at.%. With this composition, it was demonstrated
that poisoning by adsorbed CO coming from the ethanol dissociative
chemisorption is greatly reduced leading to a significant
enhancement of the electrode activity. However, it seems that
the oxidation of ethanol is not complete leading to the formation
of C2 products. These observations made in half-cell experiments
are fully confirmed during electrical tests in a single direct
ethanol fuel cell.
- Alternative Fuel: Programs hurdle gap
to build infrastructure of hydrogen
ENR, McGraw Hill Publishing Co, Vol. 252, No. 4. pp. 17.
26 Jan., 2004.
Toronto program to deploy fuel-cell and hydrogen infrastructure
projects over the next five years aims to create a dense geographic
concentration of commercial projects. Together with programs
in California and western Canada, it seeks to solve the so-called
"chicken-and-egg" infrastructure puzzle.
- Thermal Cracking of Rapeseed Oil as
Ola A. Megahed, M. Nabil, Nabil M. Abdelmonem and Dalia M.
Energy Sources, Taylor & Francis, Vol. 26, No. 11. pp. 1033-1042.
Rapeseed oil was pyrolyzed in the presence of about 2% of
calcium oxide up to a temperature of 450 deg C. A pyrolytic
oil was produced that was narrow of diesel fuel. From the
studies of ASTM distillation, the volumetric percentage of
liquid in the same boiling range for diesel fuel was equal
to 61 % of the pyrolytic oil. The heating value of pyrolytic
oil was 41.3 MJ/kg, which is equivalent to 93% of heating
value of diesel fuel. The flash point was 80 deg C which is
higher than diesel. This makes the pyrolytic product safer
during handling and storage than diesel. In addition, thermally
decomposed rapeseed oil was tested on a diesel engine and
compared to diesel. The thermal efficiency (pith) and brake
specific fuel consumption were improved. The concentration
of nitrogen oxides are less in the case of the produced fuel;
this, in turn, reduced the formation of smog due to the presence
of colored NOx. Moreover the absence of sulfur in the pyrolytic
oil is another advantage to avoid corrosion problems.
- Diesel's day in court
Diesel Progress (North American Edition), Diesel and Gas
Turbine Publications, Vol. 70, No. 3. pp. 14, 16. Mar., 2004.
In an industry centered around engineering labs, distributor
shops, service bays and manufacturing floors, One First St.
NE, Washington, D.C., is not an address typically found in
the day-to-day conduct of business. Far from the daily commerce
of the engine and equipment markets, nine people--seven men
and two women--working from the bench of the Supreme Court
of the United States, One First St. NE, Washington, D.C.,
will make a decision later this year that will significantly
shape the future of engine power in almost all its uses. At
issue is case number 02-1343, Egnine Manufactuers Assn. Et
Al vs. South Coast Air Quality Managemetn District Et Al.
The somewhat dry legal language masks what could be the most
pivotal case the diesel and alternative fuel engine business--as
well as the equipment it powers--has confronted since the
implementation of the Clean Air Act.
- High cell density cultures produced
by internal retention: application in continuous ethanol fermentation
B. C. Perez, S. A. Ospina and R. D. Godoy.
Rev.Colombiana Biotecnol., Vol. 6, No. 2. pp. 25-30. Dec,
Ethanol has provoked great interest due to its potential
as an alternative fuel. Nevertheless, fermentation processes
must be developed by increasing the low volumetric productivity
achieved in conventional cultures (batch or continuous) to
make this product become economically competitive. This can
be achieved by using techniques leading to high cell concentration
and reducing inhibition by the end-product. One of the frequently
employed methods involves cell recycling. This work thus developed
a membrane reactor incorporating a filtration module with
5 mu m stainless steel tubular units inside a 3L stirred jar
fermenter for investigating its application in continuous
ethanol production. The effects of cell concentration and
transmembrane pressure difference on permeate flux were evaluated
for testing the filtration module's performance. The internal
cell retention system was operated in Saccharomyces cerevisiae
continuous culture derived from sucrose, once fermentation
conditions had been selected (30 degree C, 1.25-1.75 vvm,
pH 4.5). Filter unit permeability was maintained by applying
pulses of air. More than 97% of the grown cells were retained
in the fermenter, reaching 51 g/L cell concentration and 8.51
g/L.h average ethanol productivity in culture with internal
cell retention; this was twice that obtained in a conventional
- Diesels hit hard by hybrids
Automotive Engineer (UK), Professional Engineering Publishing
Limited, Vol. 29, No. 6. pp. 4-5. June, 2004.
The success of Japanese carmakers in the US is set to play
a central role in transforming hybrids from being a niche
technology to a mainstream profitable business in less than
two years. As Toyota and Honda go from strength to strength,
technology market research specialists, ABI, has predicted
that hybrids alone could account for 10 per cent of the two
million midsized passenger vehicles sold in the US by 2006.
The insight study reaffirms the general consensus that it
is the Japanese - advancing with hybrid technology - who are
taking the early lead in the US over the Europeans who are
eager to push diesels to the forefront as an alternative fuel
- Investigation of the performances of
diesel engine fueled with dimethyl ether and vehicle driving
Y. Wang, H. Dong, L. Zhou and K. Pan.
Xi'an Jiaotong Daxue Xuebao (J.Xi'an Jiaotong Univ.) (China),
Xi'an Jiaotong University, Vol. 38, No. 1. pp. 24-27. Jan.,
Experiments were carried out to investigate the performance
of a multi-cylinder direct-injection diesel engine with dimethyl
ether (DME) as fuel. The results show that the maximum torque
of DME engine can exceed that of diesel engine by increasing
fuel supply amount per cycle. Increasing the flowing area
of nozzle orifices or the vertical distance of the nozzle
tip into the cylinder and reducing the opening pressure of
nozzle can improve the thermal efficiency of DME engine. NO(x)
emission of DME engine is about 50% of that of diesel engine.
Smokeless emission can be realized in all operating conditions.
HC and CO emissions are close to those of diesel engine. DME
engine modified with the above optimum data was mounted onto
the vehicle and tested on the road . The maximum speed (120
km/h) and the accelerating performance of this vehicle can
reach or exceed those of the corresponding diesel vehicle.
Experiments confirm that DME is a kind of ideal alternative
fuel for diesel engines.