Don’t panic! That is the message from BP in their recent report regarding future use of fossil fuels. They claim that even with adoption of new, low and zero emission technology, the use of fossil fuels will continue fairly unabated for the next 20 years. Giving them, presumably, plenty of time to adapt their model. And plenty of time for car manufacturers to adopt new technologies.
Don’t panic! Might be good advice to UK car production workers, as Ford is the latest to suggest that they might be looking to move production out of the UK post Brexit. While they don’t produce cars over here any more, they make a lot of engines and components. Such a crucial and iconic manufacturer would cause real damage to our industry if it were to move. As ever in this increasingly fraught debate, it is impossible to tell whether this is posturing and scaremongering, or reality. I suspect in most cases it is the latter, but it is undeniable that most large businesses are against a no-deal Brexit, and will do anything to influence the debate in the opposite direction.
As Carlos Ghosn continues to try to secure his release in Japan, it would appear that Renault and Nissan are making overtures towards healing their rift. Or at least letting the world know that they still want a long-term union. Meanwhile, their erstwhile leader has sacked, or parted company, from his previous legal team and his new appointees are making a fresh challenge against his continued arrest.
Finally, just in case BP were wrong in their predictions, it seems that Shell are hedging their bets. A significant takeover this week of a recent battery start-up, Sonnen, which specialises in home battery “Walls”, the sort of thing that Tesla has diversified into. As one blogger put it, we might think of oil as a commodity, but it is a convenient way to use stored energy. So big oil’s interest in batteries isn’t exactly surprising. Which is why BP and Total have also bought battery businesses in the past couple of years.
Have a great weekend, only 4 weeks until the start of the F1 season.
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