Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Oil Price’s $50 Fall Can’t Be Ignored Any Longer, Just As Rise to Nearly $150/Barrel Isn’t Forgotten

We’ve put off writing about the two-month slide in the price of oil from its high around $146 per barrel in mid-July. Our predictions in early summer that oil was on its way to $200 look pretty weak now that the price is below half that.

But what goes down must go up in a world with shrinking oil supplies and increasing demand. Some things don’t go down at all with the oil price, as the Wall Street Journal points out today.

Fuel surcharges and baggage charges implemented by the airlines aren’t likely to be eliminated, and that’s bad news for a Hawaii economy already rocked on every side. “This year in the worst” says one Waikiki small-business operator in a Honolulu Advertiser story next to the page one news of the continuing Wall Street meltdown.

Wanted: Good News!

With tourism down, revenues down and spirits down, what this state needs is a dose of good news. Our prediction record isn’t worth a darn lately, but we’ll go ahead and predict that a major renewable energy story will break in the islands before the end of the year. As a long-time supporter of ocean thermal energy conversion (OTEC), we’d like to think the news will be about that technology, and maybe there’s hope. Hawaiian Electric’s recent welcoming public statements about ocean energy presumably weren’t made off the cuff, so stay tuned for what could be page one news of a happier kind than what we all saw today.


Ross Rolirad said...

For some "good news", you may want to look at the Conservation side of this equation. There is a new industrial insulation on the market that has 45% less heat loss (82% better heat retention). When used in our power plants and refineries, it will save those industries millions of dollars in lost energy. The product is called HITLIN (high temperature layered insulation). Our comnpany (Visionary Insulation Products Ltd) has just started marketing the product. Our first test installation was at Kalaeloa Partners CoGeneration Plant in Campbell Industrial Park. The outlook looks great.

Doug Carlson said...

Thanks for your update, Ross, and it's good to see you working in the islands. That kind of heat retention sounds like good news, indeed.