Hello! D.C. readers: You're invited to Shifting the Wellness Paradigm, tomorrow at 8am.
And onto music. Today marks the 50th anniversary of Bob Dylan's "Nashville Skyline," which provides today's intro tune...
A fascinating battle is flaring over the International Energy Agency's multi-decade projections of changes in the global energy mix.
Why it matters: There's a metaphysical question at the core of it — whether IEA's closely watched reports reflect policy and investment trends, or shape them.
Driving the news: This month a group of prominent scientists, investors, advocates and other wrote to IEA pushing for a revamp of the annual World Energy Outlook (WEO), which provides various scenarios for the energy future through 2040.
Threat level: The letter argues that the NPS, which shows fossil fuels meeting 74% of global energy demand in 2040, helps to shape reality. It states...
"We recognize that it has always been your intent to warn policymakers of the insufficiency of the NPS, but given the central role it plays in the WEO, most users interpret this scenario as the guiding one."
The other side: IEA responded by emphasizing its efforts to hasten the transition to a cleaner energy mix and defended the WEO's modeling of climate stabilization scenarios.
The criticism of IEA's scenarios and how they're used is prompting a vigorous discussion.
What they're saying: Here's some of the pushback against the letter...
But, but, but: Others say that IEA isn't just a messenger and argue that their outlooks shape corporate decisions.
My thought bubble: I'd love to hear from Generate readers of all stripes how you use IEA scenarios. If you work for a company, does it guide investment decisions? I'm honestly a little skeptical there. If you're a policymaker, how does it factor into your thinking?
The International Monetary Fund's annual World Economic Outlook has a section that nicely tells the story of why wind and solar power are growing so fast in power markets.
What they found: The chart above shows calculations of levelized cost of electricity from different forms of zero-carbon power.
By the numbers: "Between 2009 and 2017, prices of solar photovoltaics and onshore wind turbines fell most rapidly, dropping by 76 percent and 34 percent, respectively — making these energy sources competitive alternatives to fossil fuels and more traditional low-carbon sources," IMF notes.
The big picture: Today renewables account for about 25% of global power generation, according to IEA.
Saudi Arabia: Bloomberg reports that Saudi Aramco has received $85 billion in orders for its debut bond sale.
Crude markets: Per S&P Global Platts, "Goldman Sachs has adjusted its Q2 2019 Brent oil price forecast upwards by 11.5% from $65/b to $72.50/b to reflect stronger assumptions on OPEC output cuts, further tightening of US oil sanctions on Venezuela and Iran, as well as only moderate growth in US shale production."
LNG: "France’s Total and its partners signed a long-awaited deal with Papua New Guinea on Tuesday that will allow initial work to start on a $13 billion plan to double the country’s liquefied natural gas exports," according to Reuters.
A new study concludes that rising temperatures have trimmed rural-to-urban migration within very poor nations while slightly increasing it in middle-income countries.
Why it matters: The analysis, released via the National Bureau of Economic Research, provides deeper understanding about how warming has already begun affecting human movement — and will in the future.
What's next: "We project that expected warming in the next century will encourage further urbanization in middle-income countries such as Argentina, but it will slow down urban transition in poor countries like Malawi and Niger."
What they did: Researchers with the UC Davis and the University of Idaho looked at migration data for huge numbers of relatively small geographic "cells" worldwide from 1970 to 2000.
What they found: The middle-income group showed the most internal migration to cities. A big takeaway: declines in rural productivity, including lower crop yields stemming from climate change, have different effects on poor vs. middle-income nations.
"Secretary Perry is very happy where is, leading the Department of Energy."— Energy Department spokesperson Shaylyn Hynes
Why it matters: Hynes is throwing cold water on rumors Rick Perry could head the Department of Homeland Security now that Kirstjen Nielsen is out.
Quick take: Ok, sure, the comments don't flatly rule out the idea. But Perry loves to talk about how running DOE is the "coolest" gig he's ever had.