Trump orders plan to fund US oil companies

Trump orders plan to fund US oil companies

Washington (AFP) – President Donald Trump on Tuesday ordered his administration to come up with a plan to aid US…

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Oil market volatility is at an all-time high

Crude oil prices have fallen significantly since the beginning of 2020, largely driven by the economic contraction caused by the 2019 novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) and a sudden increase in crude oil supply following the suspension of agreed production cuts among the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and partner countries. With falling demand and increasing supply, daily price changes for the U.S. benchmark crude oil West Texas Intermediate (WTI) have been extremely volatile.

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Twelve U.S. states generate more than 30% of their electricity from nuclear power

Nuclear power plants play an important role in U.S. electricity generation, consistently providing about 20% of total annual generation. Of the 30 U.S. states with operating commercial nuclear power plants, 12 states generated more than 30% of their electricity from nuclear power.

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Lower compensation rates for residential solar PV generation could reduce overall adoption

Electric utilities in some states have recently changed their policies regarding how they compensate electricity generation from solar photovoltaic (PV) systems installed on residential customers’ homes. An Issues in Focus article published as part of the U.S. Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) Annual Energy Outlook 2020 (AEO2020) discusses the potential effects of alternative utility rate structures for compensating residential solar PV generation.

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European natural gas storage inventories are at record-high levels at the end of winter

European natural gas storage inventories as of March 1, 2020, were 60% full-the highest ever recorded level for the start of March, according to Gas Storage Europe’s Aggregated Gas Storage Inventory (AGSI+). European stock levels for both January and February 2020 were the highest ever recorded for those months. Europe’s high levels of natural gas in storage are the result of a mild winter, which limited winter heating demand, and growing natural gas imports by pipeline and as liquefied natural gas (LNG).

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China’s crude oil imports surpassed 10 million barrels per day in 2019

China’s annual crude oil imports in 2019 increased to an average of 10.1 million barrels per day (b/d), an increase of 0.9 million b/d from the 2018 average. China remains the world’s top crude oil importer, surpassing the United States in 2017. China’s new refinery capacity and strategic inventory stockpiling, combined with flat domestic oil production, were the major factors contributing to the increase in China’s crude oil imports in 2019.

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Most of Hawaii’s electric battery systems are paired with wind or solar power plants

Nearly all of Hawaii’s utility-scale battery storage capacity is installed with onshore wind turbines or solar photovoltaic (PV) systems, allowing excess electricity from those generators to be stored and used later. As of January 2020, about 30% of Hawaii’s total generating capacity is solar or wind. The non-dispatchable nature of these technologies creates operational challenges for system operators. Pairing batteries with wind and solar systems has proven effective in mitigating the operational challenges. Hawaii plans to generate 100% of its electricity from renewable energy by 2045, and given this goal, wind and solar likely will account for a growing part of the state’s energy mix in the future. EIA expects that additional battery installations will support this growth.

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As total U.S. crude oil imports have fallen, imports from Canada have increased

In 2005, U.S. refineries relied heavily on foreign crude oil, importing a record volume of more than 10.1 million barrels per day (b/d). About 60% of the imported crude oil came from four countries: Canada, Mexico, Saudi Arabia, and Venezuela, and each was responsible for between 12% and 16% of total U.S. crude oil imports that year. By 2019, U.S. crude oil import trading patterns had changed significantly. In total, U.S. crude oil imports have fallen sharply, but imports from Canada have risen steadily to 3.8 million b/d, more than twice the imports from Canada in 2005. U.S. crude oil imports from Canada accounted for 56% of all U.S. crude oil imports in 2019, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) Petroleum Supply Monthly.

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U.S. coal exports declined in 2019

In 2019, U.S. coal exports declined to 93 million short tons (MMst), a 20% decrease from the previous year, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration’s Annual Coal Report. The United States exports metallurgical coal and steam coal, and exports of both decreased in 2019. U.S. steam coal exports were affected by the downturn in global coal demand, dropping 30% in 2019 from 2018. Metallurgical coal had a more moderate decline of 12%.