Green goes the shipping o.
It wasn’t so long ago that those magnificent clippers were plying their way around the globe in the race to deliver goods. Nowadays the shipping industry is mainly powered by diesel engines that are a major contributor to emissions and pollution. I read recently that rotor sails can, and I think, will replace up to half of a ship’s engine propulsion needs per day. Good news for the environment, very good news for the shipping company in terms of costs but bad news for the oil industry if the demand for shipping diesel drops by a very significant percentage.
I read that the petroleum industry started to kick off in 1859 in Pennsylvania. Since then there have been boom times and bust times. I think, and I fear for all those folks locally that are employed in the industry that we may have seen the peak and change is coming, hard and fast. Not only driven by environmental factors but changes in technology driving cost savings and business opportunities.
I applaud the recent oil and gas demonstrations and fully understand the plight of the people. I have worked in decimated industries too, construction and now journalism. I understand there is a plan to take the demonstrations to Ottawa, to be honest this is the only place where the attention of the nation and the government of the day can be almost guaranteed. There is risk though. I don’t think that authorities, especially the police, are likely to be anywhere near as sympathetic and things could get ugly if laws are broken maybe even if they’re not. Ultimately, I would be surprised to see the government change direction, but you never know unless you try. Never give up, never surrender.
As I write this column the stock market is forecast to tumble again. Apart from the fundamentals of which I think the Emperor has no clothes, huge swings up and down make me think of a few things, computer algorithm trading and speculators, maybe both, maybe even hostile trading. Who do we know that likes to dabble with computers? Anyway, President Trump was quick to own the bull market, something experienced politicians shy away from, I’m afraid now, by default, no matter whom he blames for the falls, he owns that too by default. Way to go.
More good news, not. Russian President Putin has announced a new “invulnerable” nuclear missile. Happy New Year everybody. Apparently, the new hypersonic missile will enter service in 2019 and is invulnerable to U.S. defences.
The spat with China and Canada goes on with China criticizing both the EU and France at the time of writing. I don’t believe that this is going to get better anytime soon and if anything will get worse. I never wanted to go to China anyway, even less now.