Sunday, February 26, 2012

Natural Resources: gas and oil in the East Med

RT: "New Mediterranean oil and gas bonanza"

The Middle East could soon see new battles over rights to oil and gas beneath the eastern Mediterranean in the Levant Basin and Aegean Sea. The discovery of huge reserves off Israel's coast is changing the geopolitical balance of power in the region. (...) Energy self-sufficiency had eluded the state of Israel since its founding in 1948. Abundant oil and gas exploration was repeatedly undertaken with meager results. Unlike its energy-rich Arab neighbors, Israel seemed out of luck. Then, in 2009, Israel’s exploration partner Noble Energy discovered the Tamar field in the Levantine Basin, some 50 miles west of Israel’s port of Haifa and with an estimated 8.3 tcf (trillion cubic feet) of highest-quality natural gas. Tamar was the world’s largest gas discovery in 2009. (...) >>>

Febr. 26, 2012

QE2, commodities and revolutions -

Von Mises: "QE2 Fuels a Global Fury"

The Federal Reserve has been busy the last three month pumping up the money supply by $300 billion dollars, with much more promised in the months ahead. Some of the results have been painfully predictable, others less so. (...) Higher food prices set off the revolutions in Tunisia and Egypt and the mass protests in countries like Algeria, Jordan, Yemen, Bahrain, and Iran. People in these countries buy more unprocessed foods and spend a much higher percentage of their income on food, so they have been severely impoverished by Bernanke's QE2.

Bernanke claims that monetary policy cannot change the quantity of wheat by one bushel and that higher food prices are the result of bad weather conditions in Russia and Australia. However, bad weather does not explain why the prices of virtually all food and nonfood commodities have increased substantially in recent recessionary times. This is clearly a case of too much money chasing too few goods. Of course, it would be incorrect to credit Bernanke for freeing the Egyptian people, because food prices were only the trigger, not the true cause of all this social unrest. However, it is surely correct to credit Bernanke and his fellow central bankers for worldwide commodity inflation. (...) >>>

Feb. 17, 2011

On the rising food prices -

American Thinker: "America and the Middle East Food Riots", by Steve McCann

Perhaps the most overused but most accurate term used to describe the policies and ideology of the American left is the "Law of Unintended Consequences." There is virtually nothing that these people espouse that, once put in place, has not had detrimental effects on either the people of the United States or the world.

Today there is a global food shortage and skyrocketing prices. This has become the underlying factor in the riots in Tunisia, Algeria, and Egypt, where up to 56% of a person's income is dedicated to the acquisition of food. These riots are now leading to the upheaval of governments and the very real possibility of the ascendancy of the radical elements into control. While bad weather in various parts of the world is an element of the accelerating food prices, there are two other factors directly related to the United States and its policies. (...) >>>

Feb. 1, 2011

The green memebots -

The Left is very good at manufacturing 'fact' and turn it into fake aphorism. Well known is the Rousseau clarion call "the rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer". It's demonstrably false. Obama is creating one of his own: "We consume more than 20% of the world's oil, but have less than 2% of the world's oil reserve" -

American Thinker: "The President's Oil Reserves Lie", by Chad Stafko

Tuesday night, following a tour of the Gulf Coast area, the President of the United States addressed the nation regarding the state of the BP oil spill. In his speech from the Oval Office, President Obama spoke regarding our nation's dependence upon oil and how we need to break that dependence.

During his speech, the President made a statement that was blatantly false. The President noted, "We consume more than 20% of the world's oil, but have less than 2% of the world's oil reserve. And that's part of the reason oil companies are drilling a mile beneath the surface of the ocean -- because we're running out of places to drill on land and in shallow water."

We are not running out of places to drill on land and in shallow water. In fact, it is due to the President's party of extreme environmentalists that BP had to drill some 40 miles from the coastline in deep waters to extract oil. Imagine if this oil leak had happened in the shallow waters off of the East Coast or even, dare we say it, in the pristine ANWR region. How much easier it would have been to cap the leak and clean up the oil. (...) >>>

Jun 16, 2010

Tilting at wind mills -

IBD: "No Substitute For Fossil Fuels"

Earlier this year, Congress approved a scheme to pour $80 billion — on top of the tens of billions already spent — into renewables. A government report released last week indicates the money will be wasted. Renewable energy is the shiny gem that everyone wants but no one can have. Not even a president. Campaigning last year in Lansing, Mich., President Barack Obama said that it was his goal for the U.S. to generate 10% of its electric power from renewable sources by 2012 and 25% by 2025. But he cannot, by the force of will or executive order, change the laws of physics and economics. (...) >>>

Dec. 23, 2009

CNN: "Putin: 'Cheap gas era' ending"

The sharp growth of costs in the gas industry will inevitably lead to a significant increase in global gas prices, Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said Tuesday. Putin was addressing ministers representing the world's biggest gas producers at the Gas Exporting Countries Forum (GECF) in Moscow. "(...) active gas fields are being gradually exhausted, while most of the prospective gas resources are lying far from the leading consumption centers. Therefore, costs related with gas exploration, production and transportation inevitably rise," Putin said (...)

The gathering in the Russian capital has led to speculation among industry analysts that the group want to set up an organization similar to the oil producers' cartel, OPEC. The countries attending include Algeria, Bolivia, Brunei, Egypt, Indonesia, Iran, Libya, Malaysia, Nigeria, Qatar, Russia, Trinidad and Tobago, the United Arab Emirates and Venezuela. Equatorial Guinea and Norway are attending as observers. (...) >>>

Dec 23, 2008

Brussels Journal: "Spain: Russia Tightens Europe’s Energy Noose", by

A leaked intelligence document issued by Spain’s CNI spy agency in October warns that Russia is aggressively pursuing a plan to “monopolize access to energy supplies to Europe.” The report validates what many analysts have been saying for a long time, namely that Moscow is using Russian energy companies to gain geo-strategic control over northern, central and southern Europe. (...) >>>

Dec 6, 2008

... the following item is written against the background of the credit crunch bailout, and the Democrats bowing to reality and will not try to renew the ban on offshore drilling for oil and natural gas that has annually been enacted into law for over a quarter-century ...

PJM: "Uncle Sam’s Multi-Trillion-Dollar Oil Lockup", by Tom Blumer

Maybe the Treasury bailout will force us to look at revenues we are losing by locking up our energy resources. (...) One of the untold stories of the offshore drilling ban is how much the country has lost in tax revenues over a period of decades because of it. Congressman John Peterson (R-PA) seems to be virtually alone in making this huge point. The numbers are stunning. In a PDF available at Peterson’s home page (at “Charts and Other Useful Information”), he tells us that “the United States is the only industrialized nation in the world which prohibits offshore exploration and production of domestic energy.”
The government collects royalties on oil and natural gas when it is extracted. Peterson’s office has obtained information from the Minerals Management Service and the Energy Information Agency showing that the average royalty rate based on market prices of the resources when extracted is 15.17%. (...) Even if you adjust Peterson’s calculations to reflect current prices of roughly $100 a barrel for oil and $8/mcf for natural gas, the royalties locked up still amount to over $1.8 trillion (about $500 billion from natural gas and $1.3 trillion from oil).
But that’s only the beginning. (...) An October 2005 article quoted at this entry at my blog said that because of technological progress: Between 1980 and 2002 the amount of known global oil reserves increased by 300 billion barrels, according to a survey by British Petroleum. Rather than the oil fields running dry, just the opposite has been happening. Here’s one example of finding and/or getting more than originally thought (...) >>>

27th Sep 2008

To archive >>>

1 comment:

Shrink Rat said...

8 billion barrels is not a great deal of oil relatively speaking. The Caspian Sea basin... originally reputed to be 500 billion barrels - was certainly, the major reason, along with the pipeline to carry the oil and natural gas, that the invasion of Afghanistan was orchestrated - In which the false flag of 9/11 played no small part (though it also had its larger purpose)

Ironically, the size of the Caspian find has been reduced to about 50 billion barrels (if memory serves). Still several orders of magnitude beyond Brazils find. Chavez, on the other hand, has about the same heavy oil/tar sands deposits:

"To put the volumes of the different oil reserves in perspective, there are 1.2 trillion barrels of recoverable conventional crude oil, about 0.8 trillion barrels of recoverable oil from the Colorado oil shales, and about 175 billion barrels of crude oil are economically recoverable from the Canadian tar sands at a price of USD$35 per barrel. The current price of crude oil per barrel has been almost twice that for the last couple of years suggesting that the volume of economically recoverable reserves is significantly larger than 175 billion barrels. The total volume of bitumen in the tar sands is about 1.7 trillion barrels. The size of the Orinoco tar sands resource in Venezuela is similar in size to the Canadian tar sands. However, the development of the Venezuelan tar sand resource is well behind that in Canada."

Question is: how long to deplete the paltry 8 bil barrels of Brazil .... not long at ever escalating global demands .... and then how long to make refinement of the heavy oil/tar sands oil profitable? Apparently not long given today's oil prices. But it will still cost a lot and is a slow process (relative to demand) and plays addtional great havoc on the environment.

The point is that the discovery of capacity for production of oil globally has reached peak and is in decline..... and that means inevitable decline of petro, increased prices (further killing the middle class and poor) and ultimately, relative scarcity. Capitalism ain't partial to limits, ya know.

btw, Peak Oil theorists have rarely, if not ever (to my knowledge) spoken in terms of the immediate end to oil. Simply the phenomena associated with the jagged top of the bell curve and inevitable decline thereafter. And the effect it will have upon capitalism (which is predicated upon unlimited growth) .. good! (at least in the sense of unregulated capitalism).