Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Oil use 5 times oil discovery. Why everyone is fighting to control Kirkuk.

The National: "Despite record spending levels, soaring from US$20 billion in 2004 to more than $90bn last year, and the application of technologies undreamed of in the 1950s, the results have been disappointing. With the world consuming almost 34 billion barrels of oil each year, only between 6 billion and 7 billion barrels of oil were found annually from 2012 to last year, and only about 2 billion barrels so far this year, although that will be boosted by end-of-year reports.

This poor performance is not entirely the industry’s fault. There is little exploration in promising areas such as Iran, Iraq and Russia. Between 2006 and 2013, Brazil’s “pre-salt” area contributed mega-billion barrel discoveries, but political and contractual wrangles have slowed down new exploration. Most new discoveries are in deep-water areas, large but expensive to drill and develop. And many companies are replacing their crude reserves with shale oil rather than new conventional finds.

Some new frontiers prove that success is not impossible: the Kurdish region of Iraq, the extension of Brazil’s pre-salt to West Africa, the Falkland Islands, Kenya and Newfoundland have paid off."

Monday, December 14, 2015

Cairo, Egypt, 14% own cars, but cars are 67% of the traffic

Egyptian Streets: "In his book, Understanding Cairo: The Logic of a City Out of Control (AUC Press, 2010), urban planner David Sims points out that, although only 14 percent of the capital’s population owns private cars, these vehicles are the major contributors to traffic congestion.

“The private car accounts for roughly two-thirds of all vehicles on the streets of the Greater Cairo region, with the remainder being made up of different kinds of buses, taxis, trucks, government vehicles and motorcycles,” writes Sims."

Friday, November 27, 2015

KRG plans 10 bcm in natural gas exports to Turkey in two years

hurriyet : "The KRG has an estimated 5 trillion cubic meters of gas in its territory, the Genel Energy chair said, adding that the region could reach gas exports of up to 20 bcm to Turkey and to Europe through Turkey with the entrance of other companies to the KRG market before the end of the 2020s.

Long-running disagreements between the KRG government in Arbil and the Iraqi government in Baghdad persist over the distribution of the region’s oil revenues.

KRG officials say they have opted to directly sell their oil to customers, rather than through the Iraqi state’s oil company, SOMO, because Baghdad continues to delay agreed upon payments to Arbil. A separate oil agreement between Arbil and Ankara was inked in 2013.

“We faced huge budget deficits in the first half of this year because we only received around $2 billion of the expected $7 billion of oil income. We therefore needed to sell our oil by ourselves,” Hawrami said, as quoted by Anadolu Agency.

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Committee to oversee completion of Jeddah public transport project

Yahoo Maktoob News: "“The Emir said in a meeting held at his office on Monday that the public transportation project will be a transformational project for the people of Jeddah. It will make their lives more convenient and the people will be motivated to be more productive,” said Abu Ras."

Monday, November 23, 2015

All the world wants Iraq's oil. No ISIS in Basra, so why is it a slum?

The blighted city | The Economist: "Basra should be Iraq’s most successful province. It lies furthest from IS’s front lines and has a tradition as the country’s most cosmopolitan city. It remains the country’s dynamo. It has Iraq’s only ports, and oil production that generates around 95% of the government’s oil revenues. But four decades of war, sanctions, occupation, neglect and Shia infighting have rendered it decrepit and dysfunctional. Its utilities are worse than those of Mosul, Iraq’s second city, which is controlled by IS. Power cuts last most of the day. The water is stickily saline. The air is acrid from oil plumes and from sewage that dribbles into collapsed canals which once saw Basra called “the Venice of the East”. Cholera is back. “Our health was better under sanctions and Saddam Hussein,” says a local councillor."

Friday, November 6, 2015

RTA launches 6th Public Transport Day on Nov 1

Emirates 24|7: "Mattar Al Tayer, Director General and Chairman of the Board of Executive Directors of the RTA, said, "The initiative has succeeded in realising its objectives of showcasing the role of Dubai in supporting efforts made to improve the environment, achieve sustainable development, encourage people to use public transport means, and raise public transport ridership levels by educating users about the benefits of public transport. The Day is also intended to promote RTA’s modern mass transit means comprising the Dubai metro and tram as well as buses and marine transit modes, besides achieving the integration of multi-modal transit systems, and showcasing the leading role of Dubai in general and RTA in particular in uplifting the profile of public transport.""

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Whole world wants Kirkuk oil

Did you notice that the US started bombing the Islamic State when is got close to Erbil, Iraq? That's too close to the oil. The oil under Kirkuk, Iraq, is the last large reserve of easy-to-get oil. Problem is, the Islamic State is making it hard-to-get. If the Islamic State collapsed tomorrow, few countries would leave Iraq and Syria, they would just start fighting each other.

Friday, October 16, 2015

Transport regulator ‘to actively look’ into free public transport proposal

MaltaToday : "Transport Malta will be studying the option of offering a free public transport service during peak hours.
Reacting to a report on, Transport Malta CEO James Piscopo said that “the idea should be pursued”."

Saturday, October 10, 2015

People protest corruption in "Kurdistan"

Syria Leader Assad Seeks Russian Protection from Ally Iran

Syria Leader Assad Seeks Russian Protection from Ally Iran - SPIEGEL ONLINE: "Their goals go far beyond merely reestablishing the status quo in Syria. In early 2013, Hojatoleslam Mehdi Taeb, one of the planners behind Iran's engagement in Syria, said: "Syria is the 35th province of Iran and it is a strategic province for us." For several decades, the alliance between the Assads and Iran was a profitable one, particularly in opposition to the Iraq of Saddam Hussein, which long had the upper hand in the region. But today, Assad depends on Iran to remain in power, and Tehran is taking advantage of the situation."

Russia’s holy war in Syria

Middle East Eye: "So you have two of the richest nations in the Gulf, the region’s biggest army in Turkey, the majority of the population in Turkey, Lebanon, Syria, Jordan and the Gulf, and a significant portion of Iraq, all of whom regard Russia as an imperial, foreign aggressor. That’s quite some opposition."

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Israel Imports Three-quarters of Its Oil From Iraq's Kurds

Haaretz: "Israel has bought as much as three-quarters of its oil from Iraqi Kurdistan in recent months, the Financial Times reported Sunday. 
According to the report, which cited shipping data, trading sources and satellite tanker tracking, Israeli refineries and oil firms have imported more than 19 million barrels of Kurdish oil over the course of three months, from the beginning of May to August 11. "

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Cyclists to use mass transport for free in Istanbul

Daily Sabah: "Upon the efforts of the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality and Bicycle Transportation Platform, cyclists in Istanbul will be able to use public transportation for free, according to an announcement released by Istanbul's transport body IETT on Wednesday."

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

The future will look back and shake their heads

Hey guys, listen up, we got people sitting for hours in traffic jams. We gotta keep the oil flowing!

Monday, September 28, 2015

The collapse of Saudi Arabia is inevitable

Saudi Arabia is making huge gambles against the odds. Even dramatic reform may not save it.

Middle East Eye: "Yet the Saudi government has decided that rather than learning lessons from the hubris of its neighbours, it won’t wait for war to come home – but will readily export war in the region in a madcap bid to extend its geopolitical hegemony and prolong its petro-dominance."

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Confused about who are allies and who are enemies in #Syria?

Here is a handy chart to keep up with the ever-changing alliances. Don't bother making a copy, it will be out-of-date soon.

All the major powers are tied to a corporate-capitalist system which is dependent on cheap energy. This system impoverishes millions in the competition for ever higher profit. They could just stop wasting oil by getting rid of cars in major cities. But that would hurt profits. They continue to waste oil and fight to control more.

But the Islamic State will not play by their rules and has exposed the split between the energy haves, and energy have-nots. In desperation the world powers are changing partners frequently.

Thousands Enter Syria to Join ISIS Despite Global Efforts

The New York Times: "WASHINGTON — Nearly 30,000 foreign recruits have now poured into Syria, many to join the Islamic State, a doubling of volunteers in just the past 12 months and stark evidence that an international effort to tighten borders, share intelligence and enforce antiterrorism laws is not diminishing the ranks of new militant fighters.

Among those who have entered or tried to enter the conflict in Iraq or Syria are more than 250 Americans, up from about 100 a year ago, according to intelligence and law enforcement officials."

Thursday, September 24, 2015

#Islamicstate has everyone confused

Reuters: "Many Western countries have reacted with alarm to Moscow's increased military support for President Bashar al-Assad, whom they oppose. But the rise of a common enemy, Islamic State, has rendered divisions less clear."

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Senior Saudi royal urges leadership change for fear of monarchy collapse

Middle East Eye: "On 4 September, a grandson of the late King Abdulaziz Ibn Saud wrote a four-page letter calling on the royal family to hold an emergency meeting to address concerns that the House of Saud may be losing its grip on power.

“We [have] got closer and closer to the fall of the state and the loss of power,” the letter read."

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

World powers, desperate to control oil, employ criminals in Iraq

 Iraq: Militia Abuses Mar Fight Against ISIS
hrw : "(Washington) – Iraqi government-backed militias carried out widespread destruction of homes and shops around the city of Tikrit in March and April 2015 in violation of the laws of war, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. Militiamen deliberately destroyed several hundred civilian buildings with no apparent military reason after the withdrawal of the extremist armed group Islamic State, also known as ISIS, from the area."

Sunday, September 20, 2015

How to woo citizens to using #publictransit in Kuwait? Simple. Make it fare-free

Public transportation key to ending Kuwait traffic woes
Kuwait Times: "The increasing number of cars, old infrastructure and roads, as well as other problems, translate to the never-ending traffic congestions that people experience nowadays, said the official. Nasser also touched on the subject of wooing citizens to using public transportation, stressing that to do that, there should be a strong campaign to encourage Kuwaitis to use buses and other modes of public transportation."

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Scenario for fall of Saudi Arabia to #IslamicState

  • public impatience with war in Yemen
  • confusion from shia uprising
  • increased brutality by palace against civil unrest
  • financial problems with oil strategy
  • internal strife in the palace
  • entry of US troops
  • internal strife in the military
  • voices of scholars from outside
  • internal strife in the mosques
  • armed attacks by rebels in certain areas
  • armed strike from IS at north border
  • coordinated VBIED attacks in key spots
  • suicide mission at palace
  • desertion of soldiers
  • mass protests by sunnis
  • exposure of US spies
  • exposure of Iran spies

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Labour MP calls for free public transport

MaltaToday : "Writing on her Facebook wall, she added that if public transport is funded by taxpayer money, this would translate into better air quality, increased hours of productivity “rather than biting our nails in traffic jams and sharp decrease in stress levels.”
The outspoken MP said that former operators Arriva “destroyed” the public’s faith in public transport and the current Spanish operators Autobuses de Leon “has so far failed to restore trust in the service in spite of subsidies and higher fares.”"

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Teachers' union wants free public transport for students

MaltaToday : "“A free public transport pass could solve the school bus bullying problem, via surveillance by other passengers,” Bonello argued. 
While the White Paper only recommends a subsidised bus pass for secondary school students, Bonello thinks that it should be extended to include post-secondary and tertiary students. 
“A free bus pass will encourage tertiary students to catch a bus to school, rather than use their cars, therefore reducing traffic congestion and solving the university’s notorious parking problem."

Monday, August 31, 2015

Istanbul, life before cars

Daily Sabah: "Istanbul's nostalgic trams are very well-known among travelers, yet a new book published by Kültür A.Ş. brings the stories and photos of the city's many other public transportation vehicles from the 1880s to the present"

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Islamic Experts Urge Muslim Action on Climate Change, but only #IslamicState provides free public transport

Climate Central: ""Excessive pollution from fossil fuels threatens to destroy the gifts bestowed on us by God, whom we know as Allah – gifts such as a functioning climate, healthy air to breathe, regular seasons, and living oceans," they wrote.

They said inaction on reining in manmade greenhouse gas emissions, from factories, power plants and cars, would mean "dire consequences to planet earth"."

Saturday, August 8, 2015

UAE, Motor fuel subsidy going down, but buses not available.

The National: "FUJAIRAH // Residents are calling for improved public transport after the nationwide fuel price increase, saying the network in Fujairah is lacking and there are no connections to other emirates.

“If I want to leave the car and take my kids to the city centre I will definitely take a cab – there is no public transport that would take me there,” said Mohra Sultan."

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Times Of Oman :: Call for better public transport system in Oman before fuel price hike

Times Of Oman: "Al Lawati said there are numerous potential benefits to having a good public transportation system such as creating much-needed jobs for Omanis, improving the travel experience for tourists who aren’t comfortable haggling with taxi drivers, reducing congestion on the roads, and making the roads safer with fewer vehicles and since people who drink alcohol would have the option of taking buses instead of driving under the influence.

“It’s a win-win-win-win situation for everything,” he said."

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Free bus service in the #IslamicState

War against Islam is for oil

9m more people use Dubai public transport in H1 "The UAE last week announced that it would let domestic fuel prices move more freely from August 1 in a bid to reduce the wealthy country's love of gas-guzzling cars with big engines."

Free public transport across Cyprus on Friday

/famagusta-gazette: "FRIDAY will see the public transport network in Cyprus offer rides for free.

In celebration of five years from the commencement of the new system of Public Transport by Bus, Friday 24th July has been declared by the Ministry of Transport, Communications and Works as Free Public Transport Day.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Here is more proof that cars are not "free-market" but are subsidized

Emirates 24|7: "Car ownership in the UAE stands at 480 per 1,000 people, one of the highest rates in the world.

Hot weather, superb roads infrastructure, and availability of relatively cheap fuel are certainly incentives to own and drive a car in the UAE.

As of August 1, 2015, fuel prices will no longer be regulated and a new pricing policy linked to global prices will be adopted."

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Anger over Arab wars fuels jihadi threat in Saudi Arabia

Yahoo News: "Sophisticated attacks by an Islamic State branch in Saudi Arabia show the jihadist group is better established there than previously suspected, and that fueled by anger over Arab civil wars, Riyadh's militancy problem is not going away."

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Oil subsidies were always a bad idea.. now comes the pain of ending them

Iran’s taxi drivers reel from end to fuel subsidies - "Ending the flow of cheap fuel to its citizens is just one of many economic reforms that the centrist government of president Hassan Rouhani is struggling to push through. Earlier this year bread subsidies were reduced and they are scheduled to be scrapped by year-end. The price of one loaf of sangak — a popular traditional bread — has almost tripled, which bakers say has led to decline in consumption."

Monday, June 1, 2015

Istanbul public transport 6 times cheaper, 40 percent faster, 7 times cleaner than cars - Daily Sabah

Daily Sabah: "ording to a recent study released by Istanbul's public transport body İETT, mass transport is up to six or seven times cheaper and 40 percent faster than private commute by cars."

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Oil subsidies of USD 300B/year threaten Middle East econonmy

atlantic council : "Middle East governments will spend up to $300 billion subsidising fuel costs this year, according to new calculations by the International Monetary Fund (IMF). That amount is equivalent to almost a third of all government revenue in the region. Large scale energy subsidies make little economic sense, according to the IMF, as producers are increasingly strapped for cash after a significant decline in oil prices. In the United Arab Emirates (UAE), steps have been taken to reduce energy subsidies, but the IMF has called for subsidies to be phased out completely. In Saudi Arabia, the IMF estimates that reserves will last only for the next six years at current spending rates. [The National, 5/18/2015]"

Saturday, May 16, 2015

How a fatal car crash in Iran exposed growing anger towards super-rich

The Guardian: "The death of a glamorous 20-year-old woman in a high-speed car accident in a canary yellow Porsche in Tehran has stirred up anger about the growing wealth gap in Iran."

Friday, May 8, 2015

Ovacik – First free public transport municipality in Turkey

Fare Free Public Transport: "After the 30th March 2014 local elections, the first the new Mayor did in Ovacik was to make the public transportation for free. It was one Turkish lira before but now it is free. Some passengers insist to pay. So they drop a lira in a box next to the driver. They claim if the municapility runs out of money nobody helps them.
Ovacık in Tunceli province Eastern Turkey is located on a 1500 square-kilometer area. The bus runs through the county every one hour.
The population is 3700."

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Because of #islamicstate all capitalists coming together

Sunday, May 3, 2015

JaN unlikely to be able to protect Jordan from #IslamicState : "In all cases, betting on Nusrah to confront ISIL in Jordan will help Amman only in the very short term. The issue should always be the sentiments and aspirations of the young Salafis and the youth in general. The weight of any given organization will only correspond to the state of these sentiments and aspirations. The general Jihadi environment in both Syria and Iraq is inevitably reflected inside Jordan. This, in turn, shapes the state of mind of the young generation that is being radicalized by events in both neighbors."

Friday, April 17, 2015

Web site exposes lies against #IslamicState and provides documentation

Lies Against ISIS By Exposing Falsehood And say: "... - "Internet and Social Media has made news easier to access than ever, but it also lead to increase in misinformation. Here are few examples of lies I saw about the Islamic State."

Friday, April 10, 2015

Oil price-war intensifies as Saudis boost production

Zero Hedge: " instead of leaving its own production flat in an attempt to stabilize oil prices and hit its "optimistic" outlook sooner rather than never, Saudi Arabia would boost production quite sharply to claw back market share. Specifically al-Naimi, revealed that the kingdom’s oil production in March was 10.3-million barrels a day – a record high. "

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Four-mile-long line of supertankers lined up for Iraq oil

Bloomberg Business: "Iraq’s biggest oil exports in more than three decades and winter winds are helping to keep shipping rates at a six-year high as a four-mile line of supertankers waits to load the nation’s crude."

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Saudi Arabia will fall to #IslamicState before September 2015, more signs.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

“Palestine is not an environment story” — Medium

Medium : "After writing for The Guardian for over a year, my contract was unilaterally terminated because I wrote a piece on Gaza that was beyond the pale. In doing so, The Guardian breached the very editorial freedom the paper was obligated to protect under my contract. I’m speaking out because I believe it is in the public interest to know how a Pulitizer Prize-winning newspaper which styles itself as the world’s leading liberal voice, casually engaged in an act of censorship to shut down coverage of issues that undermined Israel’s publicised rationale for going to war."

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Egyptian-Jordanian project to get Iraqi gas

shafaaq: "Al-Araby al-Jadeed newspaper reported, a statement quoted the Jordanian minister as saying that the gas pipeline, which is intended to be implemented, will work on the oil pipeline, which will extend between Iraq and Jordan in terms of the use of gas to generate electricity and run special pumps of the pipeline, in addition to providing the Jordanian and Egyptian sides with their needs from natural gas."

Monday, February 16, 2015

Record number ride Dubai Metro in 2014

The National: "“People have started to grasp the benefits of using public transport systems including the peace of mind and hassle-free mobility as well as the reduced expenses on fuel and vehicle maintenance.”"

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Dubai leader calls for #freetransit for public and private employees "He added that the municipality intends to send a clear message to people about the benefits of using public transport, both in terms of reducing the CO2 levels and reducing the number of vehicles on the road.
He urged private sector employers to offer their employees benefits such as free Nol cards for using public transport, which the municipality is offering its workers.
“This is a good initiative and I am really happy to be part of the campaign. I left my car at home today and used public transport. It is good to have the freedom sometimes. I didn’t have to worry about anything like traffic and parking,” said Eisa Ahmad, an Emirati motorist"

Sunday, February 1, 2015

ISIS seizes oil facility in Kirkuk producing 10,000 bpd

Al Arabiya News: "A small crude oil station has been seized by ISIS militants in the northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk, security and oil officials told Reuters news agency on Saturday, adding that 15 employees were missing."

Thursday, January 29, 2015

200 entities to go ‘car free’ in Dubai on February 4

Khaleej Times: "Under the slogan “Let’s Walk ... Stop Driving”, this year’s Car Free Day will see senior officials and employees of the participating departments and companies walking, cycling or using any of the public transport modes to their work places."

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Dubai public transport ridership up 20%, more investment planned "In announcing the figures, the RTA revealed that there are more than 35 mega projects in the pipeline including the extension of the Red Line of the Dubai Metro, upgrading roads and junctions leading to the site of Expo 2020 in Jebel Ali, and procuring new trains to keep up with the sustained growth in the number of metro users."

Saturday, January 3, 2015

US Army report calls for ‘military support’ of Israeli energy grab

Middle East Eye: "A new report by the US Army War College’s Strategic Studies Institute emphasises the need for “US security and military support” to its key allies in the Eastern Mediterranean, particularly Israel, over access to recent vast discoveries of regional oil and gas."