Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Wild Speculation

Remember the so-called California Energy Crisis? The one caused not by insufficient power capacity due to restrictive construction laws, not by incomplete deregulation, but by the firms conspiring to manipulate the network? Manipulate by synchronising the switch-on of large users, by scheduling the maintenance of power plants, by moving elkectricity across the state's borders, to produce blackouts. Blackouts that drove prices high, giving them large profits, while as an added benefit, putting presure on lawmakers to remove the remaining checks on them.

Now today, we have crude oil prices above $65 a barrel, and rising. Part of this is nearing peak oil, part of it speculation - and part of it oil refinery breakdowns in the USA.

Now, I don't think Texaco, Exxon et al are more ethical than PGE or Enron...


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