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Oil Prices

Press Release
24 Jun 2008

The Renewable Energy comments on Gordon Brown’s “New Deal” for foreign investment in UK Renewable Energy.

With the world watching oil prices steadily rise, Gordon Brown’s trip to the Middle East appeared to offer a new solution which was for oil exporting countries to increase their output but also invest in UK renewable energy.

Gordon Brown has been slated by much of the media for the “new deal” offer which appears to ask oil exporters to actively promote reducing the global demand for oil by investing in renewable energy which is in theory, a competing market. Opinion at the conference was divided as to the reasons behind the current oil price situation with King Abdullah criticising speculators and high taxes and news emerging from Nigeria that output was down by 350,000 barrels per day. The commitment from Saudi Arabia to generate a further 200,000 barrels a day simply served to alleviate the shortfall from Nigeria.

The Renewable Energy Centre supported the prime ministers bold attempts to change the thinking behind the future of oil and energy supply; however the thirteen states within OPEC (Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries) naturally received the idea with scepticism. The oil market is still one of the most competitive in the world and exporters although agreeing to increase production still seemed divided on the best course of action.

The Renewable Energy Centre said that the oil crisis had enabled the creation of a global forum to address the issues which are currently causing negative economic and social effects. It stated that the oil situation was one which underpinned the whole basis of society and with the likelihood of further increases, one which could herald a time of severe social and economic crisis.

Richard Simmons, Managing Director at The Renewable Energy Centre said “It comes as no surprise that this is a worldwide crisis, I believe it will be the first of many. The years of first world abundance and wealth are over and the world is now being forced to re-address the way global industries operate. Gordon Brown is no fool in this matter, oil will be around for a while yet but either its price will eventually make it inaccessible to the market or renewable energy will become the new form of energy supply. Either way, oil has a shelf life and in order for the UK to reap the rewards of its renewable energy market potential, investment and development are needed in the short and long term.”

The Renewable Energy Centre said that now was a critical time for the UK to fully realise its place in the renewable energy market and proactively push through the obstacles currently preventing projects from going ahead. It said that the UK was in a very strong position to take the lead in helping to provide alternative solutions to oil which would compete financially and serve to reduce dependence on what is becoming one of the most expensive volume production commodities in the world.

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