Skip to content

BP Energy Review For 2019

June 24, 2020
tags: ,

By Paul Homewood


The latest BP energy review is now out. As usual, there is talk of record increases in renewable energy, which are powering the increase in demand.

And as also is usual, they are trying to turn molehills into mountains!

Before we look at what the data actually says, a quick note that they have changed measurements from Mtoe to Exajoules – something to do with “input-equivalent” (beyond my pay grade!)

First, emissions continue to slowly increase, up 1.4% year on year, and in line with a 1.3% increase in primary energy consumption.

It is also consistent with decadal trends, with emissions rising by 10.3% since 2010:





Whilst European and US emissions have dropped by 3%, this has been dwarfed by the rest of the world.

China is up 3.3%. Africa, the Middle East and the rest of Asia also show similar increases.





Breakdown of year on year changes in the primary energy mix shows that fossil fuels consumption has risen by 3.5 EJ, which is more than the 2.6EJ that wind and solar have added.





With such a tiny increase in renewable energy, wind/solar remain insignificant at 3.3% of total energy, up from 2.9% last year.



Contrary to the myths peddled by XR, the UK is leading the world in deployment of wind/solar, in percentage terms. Even then, it remains pitifully low at less than 9%. In China, it is under 4%.





Finally a look at cobalt and lithium prices, which have fallen back the steep rise in the last couple of years:





What is significant is that production has also declined. Cobalt, for instance, is down by 21%. Normally you would expect a production cut to have pushed prices up. However it appears that this time production cuts have followed the price fall. BP explain:


After steep rises in prices for cobalt and lithium in 2017 and 2018, prices fell back sharply last year. Cobalt prices declined by over 50% while lithium carbonate prices slipped 31%. Production responded quickly to the drop-in prices, with cobalt production down 21.2%, largely due to a decline in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Lithium production fell 19.2%, driven mainly by lower Australian output.

BP have, by the way, cocked up by labelling all of their graphs as “US $ / Tonne”, instead of “US$1000/Tonne”!


Reading between the lines, the price rises in the last two years have been driven by speculation, on the back of a projected rapid rise in demand. What is evident is that demand has actually remained flat, suggesting that a battery revolution is not just around the corner.

  1. Mad mike permalink
    June 24, 2020 2:45 pm

    I’m sorry Paul but somebody sent me this and was just so moved I thought I’d share it with you guys on the grounds that we all need a lift at the moment. Completely off topic apart from joy.

    • A C Osborn permalink
      June 24, 2020 3:50 pm

      I have the original Video of the concert. Wondeful stuff.

      • June 24, 2020 4:26 pm

        I watch it regularly on you-tube. The oldies are still the best (watch them before somebody discovers that they are racist and gets them banned. I mean 3 white singers is hardly diversity at its best).

    • Bertie permalink
      June 24, 2020 6:09 pm

      Aren’t they breaking lockdown restrictions? (wink)

  2. June 24, 2020 2:48 pm

    The decarbonisation divide: Contextualizing landscapes of low-carbon exploitation and toxicity in Africa

    “One study projected material stock increases between 2015 and 2060 for selected technologies, and the numbers are dizzying: there is an expected increase of 87,000% for battery electric vehicles, 1000% for wind power, and 3000% for solar PV power (Månberger and Stenqvist 2018). This could be why the World Bank (2018: 3) concluded that “the clean energy transition will be significantly mineral intensive.”

    Growth in electric vehicle markets between 2017 and 2030 is expected to create 11 million tons of spent lithium ion batteries in need of recycling; as Gardiner (2017: 2) noted when discerning these trends: “there’s going to be a storm of electric vehicle batteries that will reach the end of their life in a few years.”

    Sovacool et al. (2016) conducted an environmental “profit and loss’” analysis of the manufacturing of wind turbines in Northern Europe. They noted that the materials intensity of wind turbines—involving nacelles, generators, blades, foundations, hubs, towers, power units, and transformer units—precipitates large volumes of e-waste. They calculated that a single 3.1 MW wind turbine created 772 to 1807 tons of landfill waste, 40 to 85 tons of waste sent for incineration and about 7.3 tons of e-waste per unit.”

  3. Mad Mike permalink
    June 24, 2020 2:49 pm

    Sorry wrong one

    Hope this works

    • A C Osborn permalink
      June 24, 2020 3:53 pm

      I have the Andre Rieu version.
      Nice voice, as have his Sopranos.

  4. Mad Mike permalink
    June 24, 2020 2:51 pm

    No still doesn’t work. I give up

  5. June 24, 2020 2:53 pm

    Normally you would expect a production cut to have pushed prices up.

    Maybe the demand from vehicle makers has dropped because they can’t shift the EVs they already made, or will soon be making.

  6. Mad Mike permalink
    June 24, 2020 2:55 pm

    Try this

    My very last effort

    Its Pavarotti’s grand daughter

  7. Mad Mike permalink
    June 24, 2020 2:57 pm

    Still not working. Bye bye

    • MrGrimNasty permalink
      June 24, 2020 3:03 pm

      Yes it has. Try refresh.

    • Geoff B permalink
      June 24, 2020 3:45 pm

      working fine (all of them)…..nice but not relevant….

      • Mad Mike permalink
        June 25, 2020 10:39 am

        No Not relevant Geoff and the point has been lost. I was trying to show Pavarotti’s grand daughter singing but for some reason the U-Tube link kept showing something else. Gave up in the end. Worth searching for but lets move on.

  8. MrGrimNasty permalink
    June 24, 2020 3:00 pm

    I saw some of the graphs a few days ago on WUWT, it looked like if the USA and EU disappeared overnight, Global CO2 emissions would only drop back to the levels in the early 2000s – thanks largely to the rise from China.

    The UK should tie decarbonisation to keeping emissions per head in line with the global average. That would require about a 19% cut from current levels, in reality much less, possibly even zero soon enough, because the rest of the world is still rising. But our politicians are determined we should be global leaders in this folly.

    If this were in any other policy area, in the current climate, people would equate the UK government’s attitude with some sort of white superiority complex or colonial throwback mentality.

    • June 24, 2020 3:19 pm

      The rest of the world is picking up the slack from policy-led industrial reductions of ’emissions’ in climate-obsessed countries, that are forcing energy-intensive industries to find cheaper countries to operate in.

      • MrGrimNasty permalink
        June 24, 2020 3:38 pm

        Yep, with lower levels of efficiency – so more CO2 overall, and less strict control over real pollutants.

  9. June 24, 2020 3:40 pm

    Allow me to raise your pay grade.

    Mtoe is millions of tonnes of oil equivalent.

    This is a very unscientific oily unit as you have to ask which oil and whose tonnes or tons and energy content of different oils varies considerable, so you have to state its West Texas Light or whatever.. Typically imprecise oil people – but used by DUKES as well. I assume so nobody understand and they can play secret expert?

    BY CONTRAST the Joule is an absolute amount of energy in the SI unit system which works precisely in all forms of engineering and physics..

    But it’s not a lot, so many Joules are needed to boil a cup of tea. Several thousand Joules to boil a kettle (3KW x 120 secs) = 360,000 Joules

    (Tribute to Mr Butler, my physics teacher of 60 years ago at Rutlish, who said “all the people shouting at a football match couldn’t boil a cup of tea”).

    EXAJOULES are what are needed to produce volcanoes, tropical cyclones and nuclear explosions. They are 10^18 Joules. A million, million, million Joules.

    Total world energy use is around 600 ExaJoules.

    “The IEA estimates that, in 2013, total primary energy supply (TPES) was 157.5 petawatt hours or 1.575×1017 Wh (157.5 thousand TWh; 5.67×1020 J; 13.54 billion toe) or about 18 TW-year.[3]


    1. The energy required to move a force of 1Newton through 1metre in the direction of the force.

    Lifting one Kg one metre against gravity would be 9.81Joules.

    Imagine the effort involved here to appreciate the true power of electricity to do work for you.

    2. A Joule is also a Watt second, so a KWh is 1,000 x 3,600 = 3.6 MegaJoules

    3. A KiloJoule is the energy required to raise 1 kilogram of a substance with Specific heat of 1 KJ/Kg Deg by one degree centigrade. Water has a specific heat of 4.2KJ/Kg Deg.

    So you can see how the single unit makes it easy to determine how to raise the energy required to do a job of heating or mechanical work, for example.

    You may now raise your pay grade. I tutor this for GCSE and A level so hope the explanation is clear enough to be useful to someone.

    • Ray Sanders permalink
      June 24, 2020 4:30 pm

      “all the people shouting at a football match couldn’t boil a cup of tea”
      My physics tutor “(Mr “Smiler” Ramsden at the Harvey Grammar School Folkestone) used to say exactly the same thing!
      p.s. very well expressed explanation (said by me a Physics graduate Uni of Hull 1976) so like they say “everyone remembers a good teacher”……like you clearly are.

      • June 24, 2020 6:12 pm

        How kind! Always the questions, already. I hope all three above can see this?

        I was physicist at NPL, RPS then IC but went into business via Manchester MBA at 32 after 16 tears in radiation physics and chemical engineering. After retiring I took up tutoring and STEM in schools and did a fairly useless 7407 Educational course at night school to geta quali to top up the pension. Now you need a 4 year teaching degree, rather like hairdressing.

        Tectonics???? Just lately I wrote two papers, one is on the true cost of renewable energy with storage necessary to fill its own gaps, and the other on how interglacials happen, which involves tectonics and how volcanoes are boosted by the gravitational consequences of eccentricity, obliquity and precessional cycles. That’s not climate change, THIS is climate change. But its all very slow. One problem is there aren’t many serious physicists in climate science or geology, the climate “scientists” are mathematician/statistical theorists who don’t understand deterministic physics hence the need for proof, or even the physical relationships they model. One set of geologists theorise in a ridiculously PC way that atmospheric climate change during interglacials causes all the extra volcanoes at that time, because their biases won’t allow the reverse cause and effect and their ability to conceptualise the relative energy in each system is non existent. So they make it up to be good consensual scientists..

        There are shedloads of Joules in that, so I am comfortable with them now.

        1.1×10^22 Joules pa from submarine volcanoes heating the oceans, probaly, variably. 7 times the heat reaching the surface through conduction. Seems nobody bothered to do the maths, just believed it was neither significant nor variable and really pulled the numbers out of their arses with no real science behind even the logic used, and repeated them as facts.

        Consensus. Wrong. Oxford tectonics Prof John Dewey reckons I nailed it, nobody else has joined the dots…. and of course its disruptive to consensus in geology and climate change, so publishing is proving difficult. See 2 below.
        1. Americans they don’t want anyone else to lead in anything. Units included.

        2. Most of the people responsible for editorial journalism and even professional journals are no longer technical experts, or technical at all. They are just interpreters with agendas, which is one of the ways activist politics has infiltrated and corrupted science and scientific method. So they unknowingly make the science “communicable”, to their biases and limited understandings. They certainly don’t understand the difference between provable science and models. . As Feynman pointed out, there are natural phenomenon you first need to first gain the necessary formation to understand at all (of magnetism). There are NO people with professional engineering or science qualifications editing the BBC’s technical output. The science editor Schuckman is a Geographer. They anyway prefer their beliefs to the facts they won’t even allow on air as regards climate, only the consensus is allowed air time.

        These people think they are significant and saving the planet gives them value or purpose when in fact change is natural and they can’t stop it,. which is why the powerless dears deny it.

        You can’t even see one half way up El Capitan or the Eiger Wand from the base. The area of the planet we inhabit is tiny. Our silly little machines really don’t matter that much and even asteroids and super volcanoes are shrugged off in a few months by the natural control of evaporation and cloud albedo, sans most of the the organic species around at the time that regenerate as something different. Dinosaur 2.0?

        3. I was going to use Kelvin rather than Centigrade or Celsius but why be a smart arse ;-), this was meant to be understood.

        4. With science you just have to have your own reference points. In the real world I also like old units that used clear reference points, albeit fraudable. Foot, hand, ass or camel load. etc. Hogsheads as well. What was a Firkin? Nobody told me my armspan was my height for years. I suppose Da Vinci drew that. Doh!

        In particular the dozen was a far better base for money until we got calculators, mental arithmetic was easy in eighths, quarters, thirds, halves, pence, threepence, sixpence, a shilling, etc. Same for pounds, hundredweights and tonnes , but WTF were Stones (14 lbs) and fluid ounces (20 in a pint) about? I remember a gallon is ten pounds/a large bag of spuds. hence a full fuel tank is heavy.

        PS When researching interglacial cause paper I realised, to communicate the point for presentations, If you extend your arms to represent the Earth’s diameter the rocky thickness of the sea floor on the end of them is roughly 1mm.

        The ocean crust – most of te Earth’s crust, is thinner than an egg shell relatively, much thinner. But what’s inside is sorta hard, visco elastic? But the equatorial crust goes up and down one meter a day and “can be modelled as a liquid for collision purposes”.

        BONUS: I just did a maths test for GCSE students, thought you might like it.

        King Arthur has a problem you must solve. He needs a new Round Table.

        Due to a plague of progs and with Merlin monopolisisng crystal ball communication technology, his reduced band of key Knights must all sit a minimum of 2 metres apart at the new and socially distanced round table.

        There will be twelve places at the reduced meetings. He has no one else but you to decide how big the table will be to ensure his key knights stay healthy and thate Merlins over bureaucratic chivalric Health and Safety rules are followed.

        But the room is not that large, so he needs to know…….

        QUESTION: What is the MINIMUM diameter of the table, to one decimal place?

        You may consider the Knights as point objects (not pointed).

        Show the diagram you construct to solve the problem.

        Good luck!

        Brian Catt
        (Not dead yet)

      • It doesn't add up... permalink
        June 25, 2020 12:42 am

        GCSE? I think this would have been pre 11.

        Solution: since we are discussing a Euclidean world, the shortest distance between two knights is a straight line. They must therefore be sitting at the apices of an equilateral dodecagon with side two metres. Each side is subtended at the centre by an isoceles triangle with an apex angle of 360/12=30 degrees, or π/6 radians. Halve a triangle by dropping a perpendicular from the centre through the midpoint of the side subtended by the circle. We have a triangle whose hypotenuse is R, the required radius, with a side of 1m opposite the halved apex angle. So we have R.sin(15 degrees) = 1, or D=2R = 2cosec(15 degrees). Using half angle formulae we can express that as

        2cosec(15 degrees)= 2sqrt(2/(1-cos(30 degrees)) = 2sqrt(2/(1-sqrt(3)/2)) for an exact answer in surds, or about 7.7m to 1 d.p.

      • Gerry, England permalink
        June 25, 2020 4:07 pm

        Isn’t a football crowd a highly variable metric – a bit like a ‘house of energy’. We rarely make 3 figures at our games and even then I found out how it was measured when our chairman asked ‘how many shall I say are here?’

        Professor Richard Lindzen nailed the quality of ‘climate’ scientists by saying ‘who would want to enter a field of science where it is all settled so the brightest take their skills elsewhere’ thus leaving the grant-troughing runts of the litter.

    • Nancy & John Hultquist permalink
      June 24, 2020 4:31 pm

      Thanks Brian.

      I have a fondness for the history of science, and the units of measurement invented over many years.
      My favorite example is the “hogshead” – associated with the history of wine.

      The “foot” is also one of the units, but less colorful.

      I note your use of “centigrade” that the SI folks think we should call Celsius. As a grade school lad, we used Fahrenheit, but by college time centigrade was the thing. We were 10 to 15 years behind the officials.

      I think this was true in other ways. My geology class and textbook did not include plate tectonics, even though leading researchers of the time were quite sure of the basics.

      • Iain Reid permalink
        June 25, 2020 7:47 am

        Hello Brian,

        “What was a Firkin?”

        Wrong tense, firkins (9 gallon cask) are still used in the brewery trade, as are pins (4.5 gallons), kilderkins, (18gallons) and barrel (36 gallons). the last being much rarer theses days.
        Draymen of earlier years must have been pretty strong to handle the barrels that once were quite common casks for pubs to use, and alleged to drink, on the house, a pint in every pub they delivered to.

      • Gerry, England permalink
        June 25, 2020 4:12 pm

        Hogsheads were used by one of the Lancashire breweries simply because they sold so much beer it justified it. Hydes possibly. Not sure if they do now.

    • June 24, 2020 4:35 pm

      I can never fathom out why they don’t stick to SI units, ie Joules, Watts. Any ideas why not? Are they deliberately trying to confuse?

      I know the BBC likes to have its own unique units, like ‘Olympic swimming pool’ for volume. ‘Double-decker Routemaster’ for length, ‘football pitch’ for volume, but you would think that BP and IEA would use proper units.

      • LeedsChris permalink
        June 24, 2020 11:13 pm

        One of journalists sizes of units is ‘the size of Wales’… as in an area of ….[insert scary environmental loss] the size of Wales is lost each year…

      • It doesn't add up... permalink
        June 24, 2020 11:46 pm

        Actually, for international energy statistics mtoe and toe/cap has long been the standard. Let me put it like this: I know numbers in mtoe, where I haven’t a clue in EJ (I’m busily finding out that the relationships BP employ are not straightforward). For electricity output TWh is fine. But the realities are that oil is still traded in barrels as crude and mostly as tonnes or US gallons as products; coal is traded in tonnes at qualities quoted in kcal/kg for thermal content; gas is traded per MMBtu and per therm as much as mcm (million cubic metres at standard temperature and pressure) or per MWh.

        Strange world, energy trading. But how many EJ are there in a 2 million barrel, 267,000 tonne cargo on a VLCC? I haven’t a clue, but at least those units tell me about the ship I need to transport it. The oil isn’t valued on energy content, but on the value of the products it can make in a refinery and the cost of getting it there. That’s much the same for yellowcake too. When it gets down to the nitty gritty, electricity isn’t just MWh either – it’s all those ancillary services as well – frequency support, reactive power, blackstart etc..

      • Gerry, England permalink
        June 25, 2020 4:20 pm

        LOL I see what you did there Phillip. Knot getting that one passed me.

        A chain anyone? Rod? Pole? Perch? Slug? Dyne? If you are travelling by train or anywhere near a bridge there should be a sign saying how far it is from somewhere. Down here it is to London although not sure if it is Lndon Bridge or Victoria. You will see miles but also CH which is of course our chain – 22 yards which many may know is the length of a cricket pitch (distance between the stumps). There are 80 chains to your mile which will also tell you that there must be 10 chains to a furlong.

    • Bertie permalink
      June 24, 2020 6:16 pm

      Brilliant explanation but, er, still all gobbledegook to an ‘Arts’ man!

      • June 25, 2020 2:14 pm

        If you can’t do the numbers, you can never know any science for yourself. You have to believe what people tell you and can’t discriminate between truth and lies. Even the absolute test of observation requires numeracy and units. Even if its the cost per KWh of your electricity.

        That is why the media get most science muddled and prefer to push nice sounding agendas that can’t work, because they are almost entirely arts graduates and don’t do the arithmetic, they compare assertions. But a trusted opinion can only be based on proven laws tested by numerate measurement you can check, not qualitative assertion.

        To solve the many problems with the hi jacking of science as an industry to be subsidised by government to give support to pseudo science that support policies to order, a democracy needs a numerate media who can really check what is provable science and what is said to be science – but isn’t provable or proven. To contrast science with pseudo science on at least the test by observation principle.

        There is no other way of truly knowing something. Its a problem. Feynman explains this brilliantly and in many ways. Here are two. On pseudo science:

        And scientific method and the power of any one person, the absolute opposite of “consensus”. A consensus exists to support the cohort of believers who profit from it and is only necessary bin science when it cannot be proved but belief in it is required for some i unscientific purpose. All explained in one minute.

        So what is now called science denial is in science fact the absolute measure of scientific method, by which every proven law has been tested, and every failed hypothesis as well. Climate change due to CO2 has been disproven by this approach, but the industry founded on it cannot accept that, too much easy money at stake.

    • It doesn't add up... permalink
      June 24, 2020 10:29 pm

      What is interesting is to see how BP has in fact been revising history once again, hiding it behind some units changes. I shall have to do some detailed comparison with my 2019 edition.

      Some of the changes are explained on the units tab. For things like primary energy, they are now assuming some rise in efficiency of thermal generation in order to convert to equivalent primary energy input of nuclear, hydro and renewables. Not really justified IMHO, since many small countries will have older plant whose efficiency has probably not been enhanced by maintenance. Trying to adjust for the actual efficiencies of plant is frankly a nightmare. It’s a way of masking changes to the underlying historical data. For example, I don’t know why they have revised down primary energy for Other Southern Africa for 1965-1977 very sharply (by a factor of 10 in 1965! and still a factor of 2 in 1977, after which the history seems in line). Anyway, an EJ is not necessarily a consistent EJ so far as the statistics are concerned, whatever Brian Catt may hope!

      • June 25, 2020 1:39 pm

        Really? An ExaJoule is a fixed amount of energy. Exactly as I described it above. It doesn’t vary. That’s why we have scientific units.

        I don’t hope this. It is defined absolutely. Physics is based on systems of units and laws that are repeatable wherever they are applied otherwise it won’t work. Something climate modellers simply don’t understand, which is why their models don’t work.

        As I noted, primary energy such as Mtoe is different and not absolute is effectively the theoretical amount of energy tied up in the Molecular bonds of compounds, or the nuclear bonds of atoms, that is released when the structures change during combustion reactions. A lot more binding energy from Atomic bonds than molecular. Both involve a mass change which is where the energy comes from by e=mc^2 (Yup, there is a mass change in chemical reactions too, but much less. The energy has to come from somewhere, Energy and mass are interchangeable per Einstein’s equation)

        The number of ExaJoules you will get from a primary fuel like oil or Gas will obviously vary dependent on the specific fuel. And that requires an assumption to be made in these statistics as regards the average energy density of the generic fuel under study. So a factor of Joules per tonne must be agreed and applied.

        There are agreed standards for this and I have not checked but assume they are stated and followed in the BP calculations. Suggesting this is being fiddled by BP is extremely unlikely, as anyone who understands the science can check, also compare to IEA stats, etc. Or are they like climate scientists, all in the same conspiracy? Answer is NO, because what enrgy science has to work as per the science everywhere for technological economies to function as planned. Climate science doesn’t need proving to be believed, which is why they don’t like you testing its repeatability by observation and call the application of scientific method to their “science” science denial.

        The linked source suggests 1Mtoe = 42Peta Joules
        But that’s not really the important bit, energy conversion efficiency that gets real work energy from the theoretical energy content of the primary fuel is what really matters to the human economy.

        When the fuel is used the process efficiency then becomes important in terms of the energy created in internal combustion or electricity generation, for example. Open cycle gas or coal fired electricity generation is around 40% efficient, because of the large losses of relatively low temperature/grade heat, which cannot be usefully recovered as pure instantaneous electrical energy. Waste heat from open. cycle systems can be used in neighbourhood heating schemes in cold countries where power stations are co located with habitation. Mostly the “low grade” heat is simply wasted and passed back to the cooling water source such as a River or the sea, as well as to the atmosphere in cooling towers or fan arrays that use the same evaporative latent heat loss method involving oartial loss of cooling water to the atmosphere. (You don’t have to have great big eyesore cooling towers, fan arrays are house high).

        NB: Electrical energy is pure refined energy which must be used as generated as it cannot be stored without conversion to another form of energy such as gravitational potential energy (pumped storage), or as chemical energy in batteries, etc., BTW.

        By contrast closed cycle gas turbine generation – CCGT – uses a jet engine to burn the gas and hence provide mechanical energy from pressure to drive one turbine, and the exhaust gasses to create steam to drive another turbine, which IS an efficient process because the exhaust combustion temperatures of the gas turbine are much higher than a normally aspirated combustion chamber. As a result CCGT generation efficiency is c.60%, a 50% increase, and it is clean burning with only H2O and CO2 gas outputs from the CH4 and O2 inputs. The fuel arrives by pipeline so no bulk coal trucks, ships and railways, hence CCGT is the generation of choice where gas is available to replace coal, with nuclear to replace that.

        I understand from some studies I have done to compare the technologies that the relative efficiencies of electric cars and IC cars in terms of primary energy conversion to motive power, to mostly overcome wind resistance when not accelerating, are around 30%, because the conversion process from primary energy to useful work done ultimately involve the same efficiency penalties.

        And the unit you measure those energies in at any stage does not vary. The Joule now, but also the cgs Erg, and other industry related Units such as KWh, etc. The old foot pound ft-lbf? Check out the equivalences at the link above.

      • June 25, 2020 8:50 pm

        I think I may have misundersood your statement on units or you didn’t explain it clearly. Anyway, everything you wrote subsequently was spot on, the units are industry argot and are about the engineering practicalities and money, hence don’t cross energy markets and applications as a Joule can. These are craft units, not science units. Barrels are unchanged from Amphoras in the trading sense.

        I even have a cheque for some recovered and graded oil as street cred linked below. I recall a barrel is a 41 US gallon barrel and the oil’s quality given by its API rating or gravity. Over 40 is really good. West Texas Intermediate and Brent crude are benchmarks. etc. I enjoy the US unit of a shitload.

      • It doesn't add up... permalink
        June 26, 2020 1:39 am

        Yes, really. Here’s what BP say:

        Updated methodology for converting non-fossil electricity generation to primary energy

        Traditionally, in bp’s Statistical Review of World Energy, the primary energy of non-fossil based electricity (nuclear, hydro, wind, solar, geothermal, biomass in power and other renewables sources)
        has been calculated on an ‘input-equivalent’ basis – i.e. based on the equivalent amount of fossil fuel input required to generate that amount of electricity in a standard thermal power plant.
        For example, if nuclear power output for a country was 100 TWh, and the efficiency of a standard thermal power plant was 38%, the input-equivalent primary energy would be 100/0.38 = 263 TWh or about 0.95 EJ.

        For many years, the efficiency of this standard power plant has been assumed to be 38%. However, in reality, the world average efficiency of fossil fuel-based power changes over time and has risen from around 36% in 2000 to over 40% today.
        Moreover, given the much higher efficiency of the most modern power plant (e.g. the thermal efficiency of a modern gas turbine plant is above 55%), the global average is expected to increase in the future.

        Therefore, to better assess primary energy trends, we have decided to move to a time-dependent thermal equivalence model.
        The conversion factor used each year to calculate the ‘input-equivalent’ consumption for a given level of generation is based on a simplified representation of measured average efficiency levels:

        1965-2000: assumed constant efficiency of 36%
        2000-2017: a linear increase from 36% to 40% based on observed data
        2018 onwards: the annual rate of efficiency improvement is based on the simplified assumption that efficiency will increase linearly to 45% by 2050.

        So the EJ they quote (and the mtoe they used to quote) are the result of calculation. That applies across the board: if you delve in you will find that e.g. gas statistics are originally provided as say mscf/d – so they have to assume the calorific value of the gas to get an energy measure. Those assumptions (likewise for coal and oil) are themselves variables, along with the underlying statistics that seem to be subject to revision (or compilation error). That’s why I find inconsistent conversion factors between mtoe and EJ comparing this year with last.

        In energy stats one EJ is not the same as the next.

    • Gamecock permalink
      June 25, 2020 12:37 am

      What is it in Hiroshima bombs?

      • June 25, 2020 12:06 pm

        You can Wiki these things but I needed reminding so I checked. Hiroshima was 15KT of TNT which is said to be 63TJ, a little one, So in fact you need 16,000 Hiroshimas to get to an ExaJoule.

        The largest H-Bomb tested was 50MTonne of TNT which is 210PetaJoules so 5 of those make an ExaJoule.

        By contrast a main stream Hurricane requires 52 Exajoules PER DAY to sustain itself, per the below..

        I worked out the energy in the formation of one new submarine volcano North of Madagascar in early 2019 released 20 ExaJoules in magmatic heat in 6 months, which was enough to warm the ocean surface oacross a large area and create more tropical cyclones in the East Africa and Madagascar area, which is exactly what happened but it was put down to atmospheric effects of “climate change”. What people do is puny compared to nature.

  10. June 24, 2020 4:35 pm

    Thanks. Good reference piece.

  11. sean2829 permalink
    June 24, 2020 5:04 pm

    Cobalt price pressure may also be reduced by substitution of Ni for Co. Co prices collapsed in mid 2018 while Ni spiked in the fall of 2019. During all the gyrations, nickel remained substantially cheaper than Co.

    • It doesn't add up... permalink
      June 24, 2020 11:26 pm

      I think that cobalt prices have been affected by a large stock overhang. Soaring prices encouraged hoarding, giving a misleading impression of demand. When buyers went on strike, prices fell sharply. Prices are likely to be highly volatile in the came of cat and mouse between China, Glencore, and consumers like Musk.

  12. Joe Public permalink
    June 24, 2020 5:36 pm

    “… Before we look at what the data actually says, a quick note that they have changed measurements from Mtoe to Exajoules”

    Exajoules – the large number of miniscule units so beloved by those who wish to scare about ocean heat content rise.

    On a lighter note, maybe next year’s unit-of-choice will be Hiroshima-bombs-per-second.

  13. Joe Public permalink
    June 24, 2020 5:53 pm

    “Contrary to the myths peddled by XR, the UK is leading the world in deployment of wind/solar, in percentage terms.” with chart supposedly showing “Wind/Solar as % of Primary Energy Consumption” – with UK figure at approx 8.5%.

    According to July 2019 DUKES, in 2018 wind + solar pv + hydro provided just 3.4% of our primary energy.

    • It doesn't add up... permalink
      June 24, 2020 10:34 pm

      Don’t forget that bioenergy line they like to count…

  14. MrGrimNasty permalink
    June 24, 2020 6:32 pm

    Chris Fawkes BBC weatherman, about to be dragged off-set and sent to a climate re-education camp? Weather not unusual he says, about a third of Junes in last few decades have made it to 33C, half to 30C. No No No, silly boy, facts are not science any more.

    Meanwhile Tomasz Schafernaker secured his contract renewal with an OMG OMG – it’s worrying – happening more and more, mention of the Siberian heatwave.

  15. June 24, 2020 7:00 pm

    Here is my update comparingBP statistics on fossil fuel consumption with three GMT estimates. For example.

    PE is Primary Energy from all sources; FF sums Oil, Gas and Coal.≠-global-warming/

  16. LeedsChris permalink
    June 24, 2020 11:17 pm

    One of the biggest takeaways from the BP Energy Review if the futility of going to zero carbon in the UK. Already by emissions per head in 2020 China is way ahead of us – with 6.92 tonnes of CO2 emitted per head compared to 5.46 in the UK. In addition the UK total CO2 emissions in 2019 was 387 million tonnes – only 1.1% of World emissions. Yet in the year of 2019 CO2 emissions from China, India and the developing world INCREASED by 475 million tonnes!. That means that if on 1 January 2021 the UK closed itself down and no energy was consumed by 24th October 2021 world emissions would be exactly the same as they were on 31 December – the UK’s total suicide would and will make no difference to CO2 emissions.

    • Gamecock permalink
      June 25, 2020 12:40 am

      “In addition the UK total CO2 emissions in 2019 was 387 million tonnes – only 1.1% of World emissions.”

      Please get a clue. This is off by 2700%.

      • LeedsChris permalink
        June 25, 2020 12:25 pm


      • Gamecock permalink
        June 25, 2020 10:44 pm


        Nature produces over 96% of the CO2. UK’s ~1% of man made CO2 equates to <0.04% of CO2 emissions.

        You aren't even a rounding error.

        "In addition the UK total CO2 emissions in 2019 was 387 million tonnes – only 1.1% of World emissions."

        Ridiculous. 1.1/0.04 = 27.5

        But that makes your "One of the biggest takeaways from the BP Energy Review if the futility of going to zero carbon in the UK" more correct than you realized.

    • June 25, 2020 9:19 am

      Even worse Chris. Are you aware that there is NO statistically significant empirical data which supports the assertion that CO2 in the atmosphere is anything but beneficial? It is where the oxygen we breath comes from for heavens sake! The deliberate demonization of ONE gas in the atmosphere, the gas of life, a trace gas of which man liberates 3% of the annual flux each year is criminally insane and is done with one aim only. Do you not find it strange that IF CO2 were really such a problem that they ignore what China is doing? This is all about crippling Western economies and the root of this evil is marxism, helped along by a LOT of useful idiots. Physics and geological history both show that atmospheric CO2 cannot be an issue EXCEPT that there is not enough! The average over geological history is 2500 ppm. When the vegetables we eat evolved the level was 2500-2800 ppm which is why commercial greenhouse owners pump in CO2. The plants grow bigger, faster and use less water. Who could be against that except people with another . Atmospheric CO2 levels in the Cambrian were 7000ppm the oceans were not acidic. The fact that the IPCC DELIBERATELY refuse to quantify the variation in Water Vapour is because they would have to admit that it is the dominant greenhouse gas (not that the greenhouse effect is anything more than 5% of the total heat budget for the planet. The whole claim of a simple single enemy, CO2 is a political contrivance and I have nothing but contempt for anyone who pretends anything different and even more contempt for those making money out of this travesty of science.

      • LeedsChris permalink
        June 25, 2020 12:24 pm

        Agree. Only adds to the futility…. and CO2 levels have risen the same as ever, undiminished by the lockdown….

      • June 25, 2020 7:48 pm

        I have just finalised a paper on the actual physical cause of interglacial warm spikes. As a result of extending the science that surrounds that event I have come to some rather interesting conclusions as to the whole short and long term global climate cycles, based on the multi disciplinary evidence assembled. Not the weather or regional stuff humans experience. I thought I might share it :-).

        The last brick in the wall after 4 years of research and testing ideas was realising GHE change is simply a tiny change in lapse rate that is a small part of a strongly controlled planetary climate system, and if GHE changes the dominant control of ocean evaporation will correct it with clouds, so we won’t see it at the surface if it is real, only in the troposphere. The whole basis of the GHE change as catastrophic or even real at ground level is a irrational construct, given the natural controls.

        The natural cyclic changes in equilibrium are thus ipso fact external effects the planetary control cannot control so instead has to establish new equilibriums to rebalance the system under the changed external impacts. I suggest this profile is the ice age cycle and short term solar cycles of 1Ka imposed upon it. Here are the words…., if you care.


        As of this week I suggest it is self evident from the geological evidence that we can address the Earth’s climate as a stable closed system for at least 500Million years there have been oceans to deliver the dominant control. Assuming the orbit was stable there were no orbital forcings and allowing for gradual loss of heat to space from Earth and Sun, a very slow monotonic processes.

        In this model Earths stable equilibrium state is only varied significantly and cyclicly by the solar system’s orbital forcings, which deliver both the short and long term cycles of changing equilibrium from two quite different causes.

        – Solar wind variability effect on cosmic rays hence clouds and
        – The effect of the MIlankovitch peaks in solid gravitational tides on the Earth’s structure causing submarine volcanic variability.

        This insight developed during the volcano paper but only came together yesterday!

        I think I had a light bulb moment when considering lapse rates, AKA GHE, around the solar system, which are remarkably similar regardless of actual gas, gravity and temperature. The Kirchoff temperature occurs at a pressure of 0.1Bar, where the temperature then warms towards the surface by the “greenhouse Effect” , which is simply the temperature gradient across the insulation from space provided by the volatile gas held onto the planet by gravity. Strange greenhouse..

        At this point I suddenly realised the stupidity and actual self fooling of obsessing over the possible small changes in the lapse rate to space, the temperature gradient through the atmospheric planetary lagging in fact, as if it was an important and significant stand alone effect when in fact it is ipso facto a small part of a heat transfer system controlled by a powerful natural control that has delivered Earth’s stability since there were oceans.

        This is the overtly stable system of dominant negative feedback, driven by SST, that changes evaporative cooling hence cloud formation and albedo in response to SST change , and really kicks in when the tropics reach 30deg or so SST in the daytime. Current value circa 150W/m^2. Enough response to deal with +/-15% solar variability during maximum solar orbital eccentricity +/- 50W/m^2.

        So, I ask, why would we be concerned about a small change in lapse rate/GHE, and hence SST, that will be automatically offset by a matching response from this dominant mechanism adding or subtracting a few clouds – to restore the old SST at the new lapse rate?

        That would explain why, even if there is a small CO2 effect on the GHE AKA lapse rate level, we don’t see anything except natural cyclic change in the observed record at the surface.

        The planet takes care of it. Same as it does asteroids, super volcanoes, etc.

        So what then causes the long and short term changes observed in equilibrium SSTs?

        KEY POINT: I hope. As I also suggest in my magma and Milankovitch paper, given the dominant control mechanism, significant sustained SST change MUST, ipso facto, be driven by external inputs the strong natural feedback can’t compensate for without changing the equilibrium temperature to re balance the control system .

        Examples of such causes are:

        1. Cloud formation rate change influenced by cosmic rays as solar wind variations vary the cosmic ray flux, that drive the short term cycles of 2 degrees every 1Ka, and

        2. the changing internal heat input from variable submarine volcanoes that vary with the orbital forcing of all three Milankovitch cycles

        That is my theory of everything, which is mine…. 😉

        What do you think?

  17. It doesn't add up... permalink
    June 24, 2020 11:21 pm

    I did this chart on electricity supply for 2018 from the 2019 edition just before I discovered the 2020 edition was out:

    I see they have made revisions to almost all the data, mostly fairly small – but some big reallocations between gas and oil in Iran and Saudi in particular.

    Here’s the 2020 chart for 2019 generation for comparison:

    • Joe Public permalink
      June 25, 2020 9:38 am

      An interesting visualisation IDAU, thanks.

  18. Stuart Brown permalink
    June 25, 2020 12:07 pm

    Is this off topic? Maybe, sorry, but it’s about yet another EU H2 strategy report & I had to share it.

    The piece is about an industry push back against the draft version of the European Commission’s hydrogen strategy, due to be unveiled on 8 July. But did they comment, urge, differ in opinion? – no, they rebelled apparently. Sheesh.

    At the end is a brilliant comment that skewers some of the H2 nonsense – but he doesn’t acknowledge the subsidies to renewable electricity in his rant!

  19. Mikehig permalink
    June 26, 2020 9:29 pm

    Brianrlcatt: Willis Eschenbach over at WUWT has long advocated the auto-regulation of temperature in the tropics. Worth a read imho.

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: