1. Northeast Asia Energy Focus
Korea Energy Economics Institute (KEEI) (“NORTHEAST ASIA ENERGY FOCUS,” Vol.3, No.1 February 2006) released the first edition of Northeast Asia Energy Focus for 2006. The issue includes news updates, issue and opinion articles, and statistics. Articles and opinion pieces cover topics including updates on PRC power, gas trade, nuclear energy and energy cooperation in Northeast Asia. News briefs for Northeast Asia and statistics on China and Japan’s top 10 crude suppliers are provided.
Visit KEEI website at: http://www.keei.re.kr/main.nsf/index_en.html?open&p=%2Fmain.nsf%2Fmain_en.html&s=
2. Global Renewables Fact Sheet
The International Energy Agency (“RENEWABLES IN GLOBAL ENERGY SUPPLY: AN IEA FACT SHEET,” February 21, 2006) released a renewable energy fact sheet “in order to facilitate the debate on the past, current and future place and role of renewables in total energy supply. This pamphlet presents as objectively as possible the main elements of the current renewables energy situation” and introduces IEA’s Global Renewable Energy Policies and Measures Database which offers renewable energy and market and policy information for over 100 countries.
Visit the International Energy Agency at: http://www.iea.org/
3. Energy Conservation
The Institute of Energy Economics Japan (Kensuke Kanekiyo, “LOWERING ENERGY INTENSITY TOWARD SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT,” February 2006) released this paper in response to the need to find a feasible growth global energy growth path. The paper draws from Japan’s success with an “energy effective economy” to look at lessons in energy conservation. The author concludes,” energy conservation, which creates substantial negative demand of energy, is essential for the sustainable development of our society. However, for energy conservation to be effective, policy should aim to create a “society where energy conservation generates money.”
Visit IEEJ website at: http://eneken.ieej.or.jp/en/index.html
4. Japan-PRC Relations
Agence France Presse (“JAPAN REJECTS NEW CHINESE PROPOSAL ON JOINT ENERGY PROJECTS,” March 8, 2006) reported that Japan on Wednesday rejected a new Chinese proposal for joint energy projects as the two sides struggle to bridge their differences in the territorial dispute. “China made a proposal to jointly develop two areas in the north and south of the East China Sea. This proposal is something we cannot accept,” Chief Cabinet Secretary Shinzo Abe said at a regular press conference. The new Chinese proposal was made during two days of bilateral talks held in Beijing through Tuesday, but the two sides failed to make substantial progress and discussions are expected to continue.
5. Australia-PRC Uranium Agreement
Agence France Presse (“AUSTRALIA SAYS DEAL CLOSE ON URANIUM SALES TO CHINA,” March 14, 2006) reported that Australia expects to sign an agreement soon to sell uranium to energy-hungry China after negotiations aimed at preventing its use in nuclear weapons, the government said Tuesday. News of the breakthrough with China comes just days after Australia rebuffed requests for uranium from another booming Asian nation, India, on the grounds that Delhi has not signed the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.
6. PRC Clean Coal Technology
Xinhua News Agency (Guo Likun, “CHINA FOCUS: CHINA AIMS TO CONVERT COAL INTO ULTRA-CLEAN ENERGY RESOURCE,” March 8, 2006) reported that China’s central government, research institutions and enterprises are pitching in a joint effort to convert the country’s rich coal reserves into a clean energy resource by using clean-coal technology. According to an ambitious national plan for China’s science and technology development published in early February, China will prioritize the development of industrial energy-saving, clean and efficient use, and the multi-product production of coal in the coming 15 years.
7. PRC and Central Asian Energy
Eurasianet (Stephen Blank, “CHINA MAKES POLICY SHIFT, AIMING TO WIDEN ACCESS TO CENTRAL ASIAN ENERGY,” March 13, 2006) reported that China hopes to use the Shanghai Cooperation Organization to help widen its access to Central Asian energy. Russia, meanwhile, is working to keep Beijing’s energy import ambitions in check. Chinese officials recently leaked that they want the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) to set up an energy working group later this year to study proposals for construction of pipelines among member-states. Since China is conducting parallel negotiations with Russia, the Chinese move to involve the SCO suggests an intensification of Beijing’s efforts to secure Central Asian energy.
8. Clean Energy Investment
Energy Washington Week (“HIGH RISK, LOW RETURN HAMPERS WORLD CLEAN ENERGY INVESTMENT,” March 15, 2006, Vol. 3, no. 11) reported that investment groups say lack of risk mitigation, low return on investments and other free market pressures may pose a significant barrier to using clean energy development as the principal strategy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in emerging economies. Speaking at a March 7 World Bank forum on renewable energy financing, the investment community expressed concern over the lack of progress in private equity investment in clean energy projects for emerging economies. World Bank officials say that private equity funding for renewable energy has not been that successful.
9. DPRK – US Relations
Agence France Presse (“NORTH KOREA URGES US TO CHANGE “BIASED” NUCLEAR POLICY,” March 11, 2006) reported that DPRK Saturday urged the United States to change its “biased” nuclear policy against the Stalinist state, insisting on its right to peaceful nuclear activities. The North’s official mouthpiece, the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), accused the United States of applying a double standard on countries in the nuclear non-proliferation issue.
10. ROK-Africa Relations
Korea Times (Ryu Jin, “ROH RETURNS FROM AFRICA TRIP,” March 14, 2006) reported that ROK President Roh Moo-hyun returned home Tuesday after winding up a nine-day visit to three African countries, focused on economic cooperation with the energy-abundant continent. During the first African tour by a ROK head of state in nearly 25 years, Roh produced a number of tangible outcomes, including a contract struck between Nigeria and ROK for joint development of large-scale oil fields under deep waters.
11. Russia-PRC Relations
Financial Times Information (“PUTIN’S VISIT HIGHLIGHTS PRAGMATIC COOPERATION,” March 10, 2006) reported that Russian President Vladimir Putin will pay a state visit to China from March 21 to 22, a visit which analysts say will facilitate the pragmatic comprehensive cooperation, including energy cooperation, between the two countries. “President Putin’s visit aims to enrich current Sino-Russian cooperation by launching more pragmatic and down-to-earth programs since China and Russia began carrying out most of their cooperation at the government level in the previous years,” said Jiang Yi, a researcher from the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS).
12. Russia-Mongolia Relations
BBC Monitoring (“MONGOLIA SEEKS COOPERATION WITH RUSSIA IN ENERGY SECTOR – PREMIER,” March 10, 2006) reported that Mongolia “shows significant interest in cooperation with Russia in the energy sector”, Mongolian Prime Minister Miyeegombyn Enhbold has told ITAR-TASS in an exclusive interview. Both countries “should pay more attention to developing this component of the trade and economic collaboration”, he said. Enhbold sees opportunities for cooperation “in such projects as processing oil in Mongolia and developing renewable energy sources”. “We have already made certain moves in the field,” he said.
13. 2006 Long Range Energy Alternatives Planning (LEAP) Software and Energy Analysis Workshops
LEAP Workshop: March 27-30, Bangkok, Thailand.
The Joint Graduate School for Energy & Environment (JGSEE) is organizing a workshop to introduce LEAP to Thai energy policymakers; to provide hands-on training in the use of LEAP and to begin development of an initial set of energy scenarios for Thailand.
LEAP Workshop: June 12-23, Bariloche, Argentina.
Fundacion Bariloche is pleased to announce the dates for this year’s Latin America Training workshop. The workshop will provide participants with a unique opportunity to enhance their knowledge of energy and environmental analysis, in addition to introducing participants to LEAP.
NCSP Workshop: LEAP for GHG Mitigation Assessment: April 3-7, Cairo, Egypt.
The National Communications Support Programme (NCSP) is organizing a training course on the use of LEAP for mitigation studies from 3-7 April in Cairo, Egypt. 25 experts from countries preparing their Second National Communications will participate.