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India, America to energise oil & gas sector cooperation

 M Post Bureau |  2016-07-20 23:38:57.0  |  New Delhi

India, America to energise  oil & gas sector cooperation

The two sides agreed to enhance institutional and technical cooperation in specific areas, also assessment and reassessment of conventional and unconventional hydrocarbon reserves in India, both in onshore and offshore. Both sides agreed upon the development of new technologies for biofuel (2nd generation ethanol and bio-diesel). The development of petroleum storage was also in the talk. The bilateral energy cooperation between the two countries started in the form of energy dialogue in 2005 under which oil and gas is also discussed. 

Over the last decade, several areas of interest for cooperation like technology for production from marginal fields, shale structures, developing gas pipeline network, improving refinery efficiency etc have been identified. 

During the crucial discussions, the two ministers agreed that there is a need for regular meetings of officials and experts from both sides for progress in cooperation in concrete areas. It may be noted that GAIL has contracted for import of LNG from the US to the tune of 5.8 mmt per year from end 2017. Indian companies have also invested in shale oil and gas projects in America, i.e GAIL has 20% equity in Eagle Ford basin, IOC and OIL have 10% equity in Niobrara basin).

The two sides fondly remembered the visit of  Prime Minister Narendra Modi during June 2016, when all issues of importance including energy cooperation were discussed. During the visit, an MoU for cooperation in Gas Hydrates was also renewed for another period of five years. An earlier MoU on the same issue had expired in 2013.

USA says fuel economy is quite unlikely to meet 2025 targets
The US government says fuel economy of the nation's fleet of cars and trucks won't meet its targets in 2025 because low gas prices have changed the types of vehicles people are buying. Under standards set in 2012, automakers' fleets were expected to get an average of 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025.

But in a report issued on Tuesday, the government says it's more likely to be from 50 miles per gallon to 52.6 miles per gallon, depending on the price of gas. A summary of the report by the US Environmental Protection Agency, the U.S. Department of Transportation and the California Air Resources Board was obtained by The Associated Press. The report is part of a review which will decide whether to relax the standards or keep them in place. A final decision is expected by 2018. 

When the government issued the latest standards, in 2012, the average price of a gallon of gas was $3.68. This week, it's $2.36. The agencies say they believe automakers can meet the targets set in 2012 using primarily advanced gasoline engines, not hybrids or electrics. They're already making good progress; the government says that 100 car, SUV, and pick-up truck versions on the market today already meet fuel economy standards targeted for 2020 or later. But since the fuel economy standards are weighted by sales, and people have been buying larger and less fuel-efficient models as gas prices fall, the initial targets likely won't be met. 

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