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News Headlines to Jan 16 2008
Jan 17 2008 News Links
Markets News Afternoon: US and European stocks slide; Dublin market rises
Annual Irish Consumer Inflation falls to 4.7% in December 2007
Euribor 3-Month Inter-Bank Rate falls to the lowest level since the onset of the Credit Crunch in August 2007
European Central Bank warns again that it may raise interest rates
Slashing Energy Waste in China - Energy efficiency would do 'the most, the quickest,' to reduce CO2 emissions - World Bank
Study links corporate performance to employee enablement - Economist Intelligence Unit
Markets News Thursday: Asia-Pacific and European stocks rise
Thursday Newspaper Review - Irish Business News and International Stories
Big drugs companies raided by European competition regulators
- China is second largest energy consumer in the
- World Bank Group expertise is brought to bear
to help China achieve its targeted 20 percent reduction in energy intensity.
- Bank-China Partnership includes a mix of
programs to conserve energy or reduce pollution.
Slashing Energy Waste in
China - Energy efficiency would do 'the
most, the quickest,' to reduce CO2 emissions - World Bank
A 10-year effort to slash energy waste and greenhouse gas emissions by
appealing to businesses' bottom line is beginning to "catch hold" in
China, says World Bank Lead Energy Specialist Bob
Energy management companies known as ESCOs, whose business involves helping
industries save money by using less energy, are springing up around the country
and now number at least 100, up from just three in 1998.
Many ESCOs are gathering at a conference in Beijing this week (January 17-18)
to take stock of an industry that saved about as much energy in 2006 and 2007 as
France would have consumed in standard-grade coal in the last two years.
Such results show the ESCO industry's energy conservation efforts have the
potential to significantly reduce the climb in China's coal use-a major source
of greenhouse gases, says Taylor.
"Energy efficiency would do the most, the quickest" to reduce the
amount of carbon dioxide released from fuel combustion in China, he says.
China's industries are the heaviest users of coal, he adds.
Surging ESCO Industry
The ESCO concept, introduced by the Bank to China in 1997, "caught the
imagination of key energy efficiency policy makers" as a new way to promote
energy efficiency investment commercially, says Taylor.
China's energy conservation industry began with three ESCOs created in 1998
in Shandong, Liaoning, and Beijing by the US$151 million China Energy
Conservation Project backed by the Government of China, World Bank, Global
Environment Facility (GEF), and the European Commission.
In Brief: Energy Efficiency Efforts
Since 1990, the
World Bank Group has invested nearly $3.1 billion in energy efficiency
in about 120 projects in 40 countries, according to
a new report on progress on renewable energy and energy efficiency in
fiscal 2007. more...
In China, the Bank Group, along with other partners, supports the
government's bid to reduce energy usage per unit of GDP by 20 percent by
The Bank and Chinese counterparts are also developing a large-scale
financing program for industrial renovation projects costing US$1
million to $5 million to be launched through the proposed China
Energy Efficiency Financing Project.
The government estimates the top 1,008 largest industrial energy
consumers account for 30 percent of China's total primary energy
consumption, offering a potential "goldmine" in energy savings.
In 2006, about 100 ESCOs financed over 400 energy conservation projects in 16
provinces totaling US$280 million in investment. With further rapid growth last
year, investment levels in 2007 could be double this amount, says Taylor.
Projects begun in 2005 and 2006 are expected to generate energy savings
equivalent to 18 million tons of standard-grade coal and 21 million tons of
coal, respectively, exceeding original targets by "several orders of magnitude,"
according to a recent assessment of the program.
New energy efficiency investment through ESCOs could reach US$1 billion in
three to five years and provide some 70 to 80 million tons of coal equivalent
(tce) in energy savings over the life of the projects supported, says a recent
report on World Bank innovations in China.
Energy Efficiency Investments
Under their full-service business model, ESCOs use innovative energy
performance contracts to finance energy efficiency projects that save money on
fuel or electricity.
Such projects include boiler renovations, technology upgrading in combustion
systems, renovation of kilns and furnaces, waste heat or gas recovery and use,
motor drive system renovations, cooling system replacements, internal power
supply renovation, and heating, ventilation, air conditioning system renovations
and innovations, and even light bulb replacements.
The companies are paid a large percentage (usually 80 percent) of the
estimated cost savings until their investments are paid off-typically in
one-to-three-years. With the investments paid from the savings, the host
enterprises receive more efficient equipment to use for years to come with no
Qin An Mechanical and Engineering Co., Ltd, of Chong Qing
borrowed US$2.1 million through the IFC's CHUEE program for improvements
that will save 960,000 kwh of electricity per year. Photo: World Bank
The EMC concept is particularly attractive for small and medium-sized energy
efficiency projects. But larger scale energy efficiency project investments are
also needed for the country to cut back on energy use by the steel industry and
other energy-intensive industries as China's rapidly growing economy continues
to expand, says Taylor.
Focusing on this market, the Chinese Government and World Bank have prepared
a new Energy Efficiency Financing Project, using a proposed new
US$200 million World Bank loanand
US$13 million GEF grant. This project, expected to be approved in a few
months, will foster the development of large-scale energy efficiency loan
programs in three Chinese national banks, to lend for projects in the $5-10
million range in heavy industries.
The World Bank Group's private sector arm, International Finance Corporation
(IFC), along with GEF and the government of Finland, also supports energy
efficiency improvements through the
China Utility-Based Energy
Efficiency Finance Program (CHUEE). IFC estimates the program has resulted
in more than US$120 million in energy efficiency lending, with a much larger
pipeline of expected future investment.
Besides energy conservation, including fostering the energy management
companies and reducing heat loss in buildings, the World Bank is backing
renewable energy, environmental protection in the energy sector, and efforts to
make coal plants cleaner and more efficient.
The solution is "not one single thing - it's a whole mix. You have to have a
whole mix of programs, all of which have to contribute."
"All of our work in energy is on clean energy, and all of it's growing,"
World Energy Outlook Report
|The International Energy Agency's (IEA)
World Energy Outlook (WEO), which was published in November
“The increase in China’s energy demand
between 2002 and 2005 was equivalent to Japan’s current annual
- The IEA said that if current
policies remain unchanged, the world’s energy needs will be more
than 50% higher in 2030 than today, with developing countries
accounting for 74% and China and India alone for 45%of the
growth in demand.
- The surge in overall demand
occurs even though energy intensity of gross world product falls
at a rate of 1.8% a year.
- Fossil fuels are forecast to
account for 84% of the increase in global energy consumption
between 2005 and 2030.
- The IEA says global energy
resources are sufficient to meet demand at prices close to $60 a
barrel (in 2006 dollars). But the share of supply coming from
members of the OPEC cartel will rise from 42% to 52% while
“a supply-side crunch in the period to 2015, involving an abrupt
escalation in oil prices cannot be ruled out”.
- The IEA says that coal’s share
in global commercial energy is forecast to rise from 25% to 28%
between 2005 and 2030, because of its role in power generation.
China and India already account for 45%t of world coal use and
will drive over four-fifths of the increase,
- About $22,000bn (a little under
half of 2006 world gross product) will need to be invested in
supply infrastructure, to meet demand over the next quarter
- The IEA says that even with
radical measures to reduce the energy intensity of growth,
global primary energy demand would grow at 1.3% a year.
- China will become the world’s
largest energy consumer, ahead of the US, shortly after 2010.
- Emissions of carbon dioxide will jump by 57% between 2005
and 2030. The US, China, Russia and India alone contribute
two-thirds of this increase. China became the world’s biggest
emitter in 2007 and India the third largest by 2015.
- Under the IEA’s more radical “alternative policy
scenario” CO2 emissions would stabilise only by
2025 and remain almost 30 per cent above 2005 level.
Coal Powering China's Economy
Coal contributes 30 percent
of the world's CO2 emissions and is China's most abundant energy resource,
supplying about 62 percent of the country's energy needs in 2004, according
to the International Energy Agency. While per capita energy use in China
remains much lower than in Europe or the United States, China has become the
second biggest energy consumer in the world. Its share of new CO2 emissions
is expected to rise to 40 percent of the world's total by 2030 if measures
are not taken to reduce them.
In 2005, the Chinese government set an ambitious goal of reducing energy
usage per unit of GDP by 20 percent between 2006 and 2010. The 20 percent
"is a very tough target to make," observes Bob Taylor, World Bank Lead
Energy Specialist for East Asia. Indeed, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao said
last year that China's per-unit-GDP energy consumption only fell 1.23
percent in 2006, well short of the projected target of 4 percent.
But Taylor, who has worked on World Bank-China energy projects for 25
years, says "the level of commitment is very high - I have never seen energy
conservation pushed so hard in any country, from the highest level all the
way through the system. China's leaders have a good understanding that the
country cannot continue growing very fast and consume resources at the same
efficiency it has thus far. You can see very quickly there's not enough
energy in the world to support that."