Tension with Iran: West Readies Emergency Oil Supply
As a precaution to Iran's threat to shutdown the Strait of Hormuz, Western powers prepared a contingency plan this week to tap record volume of crude oil stockpiles. Tehran announced Friday its plans to block the world's most important oil shipping lane in an attempt to avert sanctions of its nuclear program.
Senior executives of the International Energy Agency (IEA) emergency plan would release as much as 14 million barrels per day (bpd) of government owned oil stored in the U.S., Europe, Japan and other importers. Similar to the government's response to Iraq's 1990 invasion of Kuwait, action of this scale would be over five times greater, setting a new record as the state's largest release in history.
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Additionally, Saudi Arabia would need to route more crude through the country's East-West pipeline system to reach the port of Yanbu on the Red Sea, freeing an estimated 3 million bpd of export capacity. The United Arab Emirates could also get as much as 1.5 bpd to the Indian Ocean if necessary.
As the IEA continues to keep an eye on the situation, Western governments continue to target Iranian oil supplies and discourage business with Tehran. If the EU releases an embargo on Iran, threatening a ban of 500,000 bpd of the country's crude oil exports, the IEA is less likely to release emergency stocks, industry sources told Reuters.
What's at stake: Strait of Hormuz by the numbers
Hydrostor receives $4m funding for A-CAES facility in Canada
Hydrostor has received $4m funding to develop a 300-500MW Advanced Compressed Air Energy Storage (A-CAES) facility in Canada.
The funding will be used to complete essential engineering and planning, and enable Hydrostor to plan construction.
The project will be modeled on Hydrostor’s commercially operating Goderich storage facility, providing up to 12 hours of energy storage.
Hydrostor’s A-CAES system supports Canada’s green economic transition by designing, building, and operating emissions-free energy storage facilities, and employing people, suppliers, and technologies from the oil and gas sector.
The Honorable Seamus O’Regan, Jr. Minister of Natural Resources, said: “Investing in clean technology will lower emissions and increase our competitiveness. This is how we get to net zero by 2050.”
A-CAES has the potential to lower greenhouse gas emissions by enabling the transition to a cleaner and more flexible electricity grid. Specifically, the low-impact and cost-effective technology will reduce the use of fossil fuels and will provide reliable and bankable energy storage solutions for utilities and regulators, while integrating renewable energy for sustainable growth.
Curtis VanWalleghem, Hydrostor’s Chief Executive Officer, said: “We are grateful for the federal government’s support of our long duration energy storage solution that is critical to enabling the clean energy transition. This made-in-Canada solution, with the support of NRCan and Sustainable Development Technology Canada, is ready to be widely deployed within Canada and globally to lower electricity rates and decarbonize the electricity sector."
The Rosamond A-CAES 500MW Project is under advanced development and targeting a 2024 launch. It is designed to turn California’s growing solar and wind resources into on-demand peak capacity while allowing for closure of fossil fuel generating stations.
Hydrostor closed US$37 million (C$49 million) in growth financing in September 2019.