Comments by Igor Alexeev Subscribe

On US Shale Myths and European Market Reality

The US government is interested in selling its "global" energy strategy to the public as something innovative. At the same time fracking corporations need new markets to sell the equipment, for example, in the UK.  That's why we see all these "fracking-saves-the-world" mantras on Business Insider and on this respectable web site again.  

The environmental concerns in the European Union are very real: France & Germany banned hydraulic fracturing. "Transatlantic solidarity" is for political declarations, not business.  Washington has to deal with it.

China Slow to Start Fracking for Natural Gas in Shale - Scientific American



August 20, 2013    View Comment    

On US Shale Myths and European Market Reality

Thank you for your comment, Mr. Miller.

Shale scepticism is not exclusively based on Hubbert's peaking oil theory. There are many other aspects. 

1. I agree, that fracking is and will be an important source in the U.S. production. However the quality of both technical and financial information about the real situation in unconventional gas industry is very poor. There are some optimistic EIA charts and many press releases by fracking corporations. Is it enough to make far-reaching conclusions? I doubt it. 

2. EU problems with unconventional gas by today are as follows:

a) densely populated areas

b) lack of private land and drinking water

c) environmental issues (groundwater contamination, earthquakes

d) problems with commercial feasibility - some thoughts on the matter in Fracking FAQ.

3. >> the world still has 100 +/- years of recoverable oil and gas. 

Agreed, it is most probable that World Bank stats on recoverable fossils are correct.. My idea is not that they are technologically un-recoverable.

All I want to say is that in the mid-term we will not see export of US fracking technology to the European Union. Even exorbitant prices on the EU nat gas market won't change the situation. Fracking in Poland and Ukraine is unrealistic, unless technology radically changes. 

August 20, 2013    View Comment    

On Energy Risk: Fracking Increasing Competition for Water

Key components of  fracking cocktail are protected as trade secret.  If fracking caused serious groundwater contamination in Arizona/Texas deserts, it's just too risky to consider it in more densely populated areas. 

New York citizens understand it very well, thus protests.

June 21, 2013    View Comment    

On German Analyst Prefers Russian Gas to German Nuclear Energy

Germany has very good reasons to believe Russia is a stable supplier. Russian natural gas shaved gas consumption peaks in Europe during the 2011/2012 cold winter.

June 21, 2013    View Comment    

On Indian Nuclear Power Plant Gets Green Light Amid Regulatory Risks

Thanks for your informative comments. A simple glance at the EIA country statistics show that nat gas & oil combined are no more than 30% of India's total energy consumption and not very advanced coal/turf/other combustibles - ca. 60%. India is just starting to explore its nuclear options. Luckily for Indians, Kudankulam is a settled issue.

One more relevant opinion of K.S. Parthasarathy, a former secretary of India's Atomic Energy Regulatory Board: 

"The court did what was best for the country. If national policies, decided by elected representatives and executed by legally responsible agencies, are challenged on the grounds of perception by small groups, however well-intentioned they may think they are, we will not progress in any field." 

June 19, 2013    View Comment    

On Indian Nuclear Power Plant Gets Green Light Amid Regulatory Risks

Natural gas for India requires infrastructure which is very expensive to construct. IMHO nuclear energy can be a solution. The government of India will have to deal with population boom as early as in 2020-2025. I'm sure the Indian elite understands the problem.

That's why it's really very very strange that they are putting forward unrealistic liability demands.

June 19, 2013    View Comment    

On Nuclear Energy Industry Re-Energizing after Fukushima

Thank you for your opinion, Richard.

Yes, nuclear energy can be dangerous. But I think we shouldn't stop research in this field - as a technologically advanced civilization we need a stable energy source and should work on it to limit all the risks you've mentioned. That's why the developing world continues to build NPP. One if the options is to build small- and medium-sized reactors. As far as I know, their modern construction technology is very flexible. They also have compact design which may guarantee a relatively higher level of operational safety. If done well, such nuclear energy sources can meet industrial siting requirements thus setting rational limits to Green alarmism.  



May 24, 2013    View Comment