Focus topic natural resources

 

Focus topic: Energy and climate changeWhile global demand for natural resources is growing steadily, supply is limited. This holds in equal measure for water, agricultural commodities, fossil fuels, metals and ores – and has far-reaching implications for the world’s climate. In the absence of hard-hitting measures to counter this trend, prices for these natural resources will continue to rise. One of the most important parameters to ensure future supply is to boost efficiency in the utilisation of these resources. The measures required to meet these challenges will trigger fundamental changes harbouring numerous risks and opportunities for market participants.

 

DB Research publishes a Web 2.0 animated film
on climate change

 

 


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14.11.2014
US and China reach climate protection agreement: A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush
Abstract: At the APEC Summit the US and China reached an accord on long-term targets to combat climate change. The US plans to cut its CO2 emissions by 2025 by 26-28% compared with 2005 levels. In China CO2 emissions are to peak by 2030 at the latest. Although many reservations will probably be expressed that this is too little to contain the negative consequences of climate change to a manageable degree, given the realities in international climate policy such a compromise is the bird in the hand that may be preferable to the two in the bush.
Topics: Economic policy; Energy policy; Energy sector; Environmental policy; Environmental protection; Intern. relations; Key issues; Natural resources; Sectors / commodities
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28.10.2014
EU climate targets: High degree of flexibility highlights conflicts within the EU
Abstract: The climate targets recently adopted by the EU show a high degree of flexibility. This reflects the conflicting interests and the heterogeneity of the EU member states, for example in terms of energy generation or degree of industrialisation. However, the pronounced flexibility is not necessarily bad news. The fact that the EU intends to rely also in future on revitalised EU emissions trading as its main climate protection instrument is to be welcomed. Compared with other countries – such as the United States or China – the EU committed itself early on with an ambitious CO2 reduction target of at least 40%.
Topics: Economic policy; Economic structure; Energy policy; Energy sector; Environmental policy; European issues; European policy issues; Key issues; Natural resources; Sectors / commodities; Sustainability
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09.10.2014
Ebola: A human and economic catastrophe in West Africa
Abstract: Since its outbreak in December 2013 in Guinea, the Ebola epidemic in West Africa has resulted in over 3,000 deaths out of 7,000 cases, according to the World Health Organization. The actual figure could be higher since there is evidence of substantial under-reporting of cases and deaths. This outbreak has been spreading considerably faster than previous ones, mostly because it has reached urban areas in Liberia and Sierra Leone. It could spiral to over 500,000 infections, and potentially many more, by the end of January if control measures do not improve, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In contrast to this worst-case scenario, mobilisation by the international community as seen recently and increased education in affected countries could almost end the epidemic.
Topics: Africa; Economic growth; Emerging markets; Energy sector; Gas industry; Key issues; Natural resources; Risk / Country Risk; Sectors / commodities; Socio-econ. trends; Trade
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26.06.2014
The changing energy mix in Germany: The drivers are the Energiewende and international trends
Abstract: Due to numerous political incentives, especially relating to the Renewable Energy Sources Act (EEG), the renewables share has increased sixfold since 1997 with regard to both primary energy consumption and electricity generation. Germany's first energy policy rethink (or Energiewende 1.0) not only sent costs ballooning but also impacted on electricity prices, the generation mix and emissions trading. And despite the EEG the contribution of wind/solar to primary energy consumption (PEC) was a mere 2%-plus in 2013. Overall, the “green electricity share” could reach roughly 60% by 2035. But how will the remaining 40% be generated – in view of the Energiewende 2.0? Depending on the scenario, the onus is more on natural gas or coal.
Topics: Economic policy; Energy policy; Energy sector; Environmental policy; Environmental protection; Gas industry; Innovation; Key issues; Natural resources; Sectors / commodities; Sustainability; Technology and innovation
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12.06.2014
Mozambique: A growth story which can be sustained
Abstract: Forecast to grow at 8% per year over the next five years, Mozambique is benefiting from mineral wealth and infrastructure development following a 30-year civil war and from a favourable macroeconomic environment. However, the southern African country has a very low GDP per capita (USD 655). It is now facing the challenge of developing its wealth of natural resources, particularly the gas sector, so that this benefits the population at large and leads to sustainable growth.
Topics: Africa; Economic growth; Emerging markets; Energy sector; Gas industry; Key issues; Natural resources; Risk / Country Risk; Sectors / commodities; Socio-econ. trends; Trade
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14.04.2014
Agricultural value chains in Sub-Saharan Africa: From a development challenge to a business opportunity
Abstract: What about agriculture in Sub-Saharan Africa? Is it important to develop the sector or should efforts focus elsewhere? We argue that investments in agriculture and agribusiness are needed and that, ensuring efficient and sustainable agricultural production, they can drive economic growth and poverty reduction as well as fulfil both domestic and global demand for agricultural products. SSA offers both huge agricultural potential and fast-growing markets and there is increasing investor interest along the whole food supply chain. Challenges remain in terms of infrastructure, trade, skills and financing but there is increased commitment from governments and other partners for a sector with strong growth opportunities.
Topics: Africa; Economic policy; Emerging markets; Food and beverages; Intern. relations; Macroeconomics; Natural resources; Risk / Country Risk; Socio-econ. trends; Sustainability; Trade
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11.03.2014
Germany's "Energiewende" driving power-to-gas: From an idea to market launch
Abstract: The massive expansion of renewables in the last few years has led to an increase in the volatility of the power supply. As the implementation of the "Energiewende" is one of the crucial issues for the new federal government, this also requires innovative solutions that go beyond traditional technical storage facilities in our view. Looking ahead, the energy revolution may hardly succeed without power-to-gas as power-to-gas as a storage medium could offset the continuing strong increases in the volatilities in power supply. The prospects for power-to-gas are favourable. Experts claim the installation of power-to-gas systems with an electricity generation of 1,000 MW by 2022 to establish an initial market. If in the time thereafter – as we expect – the demand for electricity storage media continues to rise as a result of increasing green electricity quantities and fluctuations, power-to-gas is an appropriate answer to the currently still open question as to a sustainable technical solution.
Topics: Energy policy; Energy sector; Environmental policy; Environmental protection; Gas industry; Innovation; Key issues; Natural resources; Sustainability; Technology and innovation
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28.01.2014
EU intends to reduce CO2 emissions by 40% by 2030
Topics: Economic policy; Energy policy; Energy sector; Environmental policy; Environmental protection; European issues; European policy issues; Intern. relations; Key issues; Natural resources; Sectors / commodities; Sustainability
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23.01.2014
Carbon Leakage: A barely perceptible process
Abstract: Germany pursues ambitious energy and climate policy objectives and is thus a trailblazer in these fields internationally. However, the faltering UN climate protection process shows that other countries are not following Germany's lead or are moving at a slower pace. In Germany, a barely perceptible process of de-industrialisation has already begun in energy-intensive sectors. CO2 emissions are shifting from Germany to other countries. In order to stop the barely perceptible process of de-industrialisation and carbon leakage, Germany should either join forces with Europe to achieve faster progress and more stringent targets in international climate protection or else curb its own pace. At the very least, Germany has to seek to make its Energiewende more efficient. Moreover, energy-intensive companies are going to require exemption regimes in the future, too.
Topics: Chemicals industry; Energy policy; Energy sector; Environmental policy; Environmental protection; Gas industry; Globalisation; Innovation; Intern. relations; Key issues; Natural resources; Sectors / commodities; Steel industry; Sustainability
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23.01.2014
Energy policy paper marks beginning of Energiewende 2.0
Abstract: Germany's "Energiewende 1.0", or shift towards renewable energy, has advanced rapidly since the Renewable Energy Sources Act (EEG) was amended in 2004. However, the costs of changing over to photovoltaics, windpower etc. are becoming more and more noticeable. A correction, well overdue, calls for structural reforms and thus an "Energiewende 2.0". The policy paper presented by energy minister Sigmar Gabriel marks a new start. Moves to sharpen the focus of subsidisation and amend the exemptions for companies not facing international competition are essential and overdue.
Topics: Economic policy; Energy policy; Energy sector; Environmental policy; Environmental protection; Gas industry; Key issues; Natural resources; SMEs; Sectors / commodities; Sustainability
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