OPEC and U.S. shale drillers are on collision course

by John Kemp, June 14, 2017, in  Reuters

The speed and scale at which U.S. shale production has bounced back from the slump in 2015/16 has confounded OPEC and all the other major forecasters.

The oil market is on an unsustainable course with output from U.S. shale and other non-OPEC sources 010increasing rapidly, while OPEC and its allies trim production to reduce inventories and prop up prices.

The International Energy Agency (IEA) projects non-OPEC output will increase by 1.5 million barrels per day (bpd) in 2018 (“Oil Market Report”, IEA, June 2017).

If that proves correct, non-OPEC suppliers will capture all the increase in demand next year, because the IEA predicts consumption will increase by only 1.4 million bpd.


Dating early animal evolution using phylogenomic data

by M. Dormant and G. Wörheide, June 12, 2017 in Sci.Rep. Nature 

According to our results, all non-bilaterian phyla, as well as total-group Bilateria, evolved in an ancient radiation during a geologically relatively short time span, before the onset of long-term global glaciations (“Snowball Earth”; ~720–635 Ma). Importantly, this result appears robust to alterations of a number of important analytical variables, such as models of among-lineage rate variation and sets of fossil calibrations used.


2015-16 El Nino behind large-scale surface melting event in Antarctica

by Nature Communications, June 15, 2017 in ClimatChangeDispatch

The West Antarctic Ice Sheet, a landbound mass of ice larger than Mexico, experienced substantial surface melt through the austral summer of 2015-2016 during one of the largest El Niño events of the past 50 years, according to scientists who had been conducting the first comprehensive atmospheric measurements in the region since the 1960s.

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