July 23, 2021

ENERGY AND ENVIRONMENT

  • Cenovus has signed a contract to buy renewable power from a new solar project, being developed in part, by Cold Lake First Nations.
  • 7 natural gas producers are teaming up with a West Coast Indigenous group to propose a new LNG facility in BC, estimated to generate $55 billion in direct and indirect economic impacts.
  • Quebec has refused to approve construction of an LNG facility north of Quebec City, effectively killing a $14 billion project that would have carried natural gas from Western Canada to port.
  • Alberta expects to pay $1 billion in crop insurance as a result of drought this year.
  • Farmers in both Canada and the US are taking the rare measure of baling up their wheat and barley stems (instead of harvesting them) to sell as hay for livestock operators.
  • UK needs 10x as many EV charge points by 2030 as they have now.
  • Global road fuel demand (gasoline and diesel) is expected to peak in 2027 vs earlier estimate of 2031 because of more fuel-efficient autos and increased adoption of electric vehicles.

COVID – WHERE ARE WE NOW (DELTA VARIANT IMPACT)?

  • New Zealand is pausing quarantine-free travel with Australia for at least 8 weeks.
  • EU and US are in talks on vaccine passports with little progress because of the lack of a US federal certification system.
    • Talks with the UK and Canada are advancing
  • UK is exploring ‘Vaccine ID’ for business, sports, and music events.
  • Italy requires a ‘Vaccine Pass’ for dining and leisure as cases rise again.
  • Indiana University students must provide proof of vaccination for the 2021 fall semester.
  • An Israeli study shows that while the Pfizer vaccine is 39% effective in preventing infection with the Delta variant, it provides strong protection against hospitalization and death.
  • Over 30% of the world’s population faces malnutrition due to COVID’s disruption to supply chains and increased food costs. (Nature Food Journal)

TIDBITS

  • Calgary’s downtown office vacancy rate is set to exceed 30% and potentially reach a level unseen in a major North American city since the 1930’s according to Avison Young.
  • Statistics Canada has updated the calculation for the Consumer Price Index (CPI), increasing the weighting on shelter and decreasing transportation, among other small changes.
  • Global population is expected to reach 9.7 billion by 2050, up 207% (7.79 billion) from 1950.
    • Annual population growth rate peaked in 1968 at 2.07%; 2020 is 1.04%; expected in 2050 is 0.49%.
  • Jeff Bezos donated $100 million to Chef Jose Andres for his disaster relief organization, World Central Kitchen.
  • China and the US are shipping goods to each other at the fastest pace since 2018.
  • EU is proposing a ban on anonymous crypto currency transactions.