Norway tells oil fund to quit coal, EU oil giants ask for direct climate negotiations with governments, ExxonMobil CEO cries "fake" and mocks renewables, gas bridge unlikely to work: Week 21, 2015

Six oil and gas groups seek direct climate negotiations with governments. So ask BP, Shell, Total, Eni, Statoil and BG in a letter to the UNFCCC. ExxonMobil CEO says he refuses to “fake it.”
US rig count decline is effectively over. So Art Berman reports. The horizontal Bakken, Eagle Ford & Permian rigs fell by 2 this week, none last: normal fluctuation at $100/barrel.
“Easy Access to Money Keeps U.S. Oil Pumping”: WSJ. Despite poor economics, companies continue to drill because capital flows to them in a zero-interest rate world.
Solar Impulse starts six-day Pacific Ocean crossing. Seventh and longest section of round-the-world journey begins. Pilot Andre Borschberg has to survive huge endurance test.
Poor nations are waiting to see if climate deal meets expectations: Segolene Royale. We have to meet their expectations says the French environment minister.
“The fossil-fuel industry’s campaign to mislead the American people.” Senator Sheldon Whitehouse draws a parallel with the tobacco industry’s campaign in the Washington Post.
Climate benefits of a natural gas bridge ‘unlikely to be significant’. So argues a New Climate Economy paper. Methane leakage could easily wipe out any benefit.
GE enters solar installation market. They are providing a 2 MW array to a commercial client in New York state.
Norway’s $900bn sovereign wealth fund told to divest from coal. Finance committee agrees fund should sell shares in all companies with >30% assets in coal. Final vote is 5 June.
Norway fund could trigger wave of large fossil fuel divestments: Carbon Tracker. So says Mark Campanale about the Norwegian oil fund’s government-enforced divesment.
“Fossil industry faces a perfect political and technological storm.” Ambrose-Evans-Pritchard tours the Carbon War battlefields in the Telegraph and reaches this inescapable conclusion.
“Saudi Arabia: outta gas”: FT Lex column. (SA) the problem: as much as 1mbd goes to electricity: more than 15 per cent of its oil exports. Solar beckons, Lex observes.
“The idea of treating climate change as a financial market risk has gained a lot of traction the last few years in no small part to the efforts of (Carbon Tracker). “ So says FT Alphaville.
France ready to step in if UN climate talks stall. So says their top diplomat, Laurence Tubiana. A new text will be produced if nations fail to edit down the current 90 page draft.
Vatican official calls for a “moral awakening” on climate change. Cardinal Peter Turkson warns, after a summit on Tuesday, that a “full conversion” of hearts and minds is needed.
Chevron investors win historic vote. In a breakthrough for corporate governance activists, 55% vote for large investors to nominate a quarter of directors to the board.
ExxonMobil CEO mocks renewables at AGM. “We choose not to lose money on purpose,” Rex Tillerson says. And “Mankind has this enormous capacity to deal with adversity”.
Oil billionaire places $450m bet on Russian solar ramp-up. Hevel Solar, Viktor Vekselberg’s JV, plans solar farms through 2018 and says diversifying power generation will benefit the country.
WHO passes landmark resolution on air pollution. The 8m deaths per year, discussed for the first time, can be cut by the kind of co-operation envisaged in the agreement.
Stop demonising oil and gas companies, says UN climate chief. Christiana Figueres tells business leaders that efforts by fossil fuel companies to go green should be welcomed.
US rig count finally stabilizes some 60% below the peak. From 1,609 on 10 October, the count has now fallen by 950 units to 679, the lowest level since 20 August 2010. (Mark Lewis, no url).
Shell’s Arctic extraction to take a decade or two, even if oil is found. Marvin Odum, Shell’s head of oil and gas production in the Americas, says environmental permits are the problem.
Oil boss bonus payouts linked to a $1tn (£650bn) capex spree. Guardian analysis shows a strong link to extraction over nine years.
Largest floating solar platform unveiled in Japan. A 2.3 MW array built by Kyocera and Tokyo Century Leasing on a reservoir near Osaka.
“Can Elon Musk and Tesla save the mining industry?” So a Telegraph headline asks. Newgen batteries, in a global EV market of 740k units pa, will require much cobalt, lithium and nickel.