No More Energy Worries

Yet another wingnut email. This one is somewhat plausible, but wrong none the less. I have no idea what Lowell’s comment about the environmentalist when he forwarded it on means , but the most likely outcome for “all that power” is that it stays in the ground.

Thanks to the environmentalist,  How do we get rid of all that power?

Lowell M

---  
Read the whole report especially the end. This is real eye opener.
Subject: FW: Bakken Oil --More than the rest of the World combined

About 6 months ago I was watching a news program on oil and one of the Forbes Bros. was the guest. This is out of context, but this is the actual question as asked. The host said to Forbes, "I am going to ask you a direct question and I would like a direct answer, how much oil does the U.S. have in the ground." Forbes did not miss a beat, he said, "more than all the Middle East put together." Please read below.
The U. S. Geological Service issued a report in April ('08) that only scientists and oil men knew was coming, but man was it big.  It was a revised report (hadn't been updated since '95) on how much oil was in this area of the western 2/3 of North Dakota ;  western South Dakota ; and extreme eastern Montana ....... check THIS out:
The Bakken is the largest domestic oil discovery since Alaska 's Prudhoe Bay , and has the potential to eliminate all American dependence on foreign oil. The Energy Information Administration (EIA) estimates it at 503 billion barrels. Even if just 10% of the oil is recoverable... at $107 a barrel, we're looking at a resource base worth more than $5.3 trillion.
'When I first briefed legislators on this, you could practically see their jaws hit the floor. They had no idea..' says Terry Johnson, the Montana Legislature's financial analyst.
'This sizable find is now the highest-producing onshore oil field found in the past 56 years' reports, The Pittsburgh Post Gazette.  It's a formation known as the Williston Basin , but is more commonly referred to as the 'Bakken.'  And it stretches from Northern Montana, through North Dakota and into Canada .  For years, U. S. oil exploration has been considered a dead end.  Even the 'Big Oil' companies gave up searching for major oil wells decades ago.  However, a recent technological breakthrough has opened up the Bakken's massive reserves.... and we now have access of up to 500 billion barrels.  And because this is light, sweet oil, those billions of barrels will cost Americans just $16 PER BARREL!
That's enough crude to fully fuel the American economy for 2041 years straight.
2. And if THAT didn't throw you on the floor, then this next one should - because it's from TWO YEARS AGO!
U. S. Oil Discovery- Largest Reserve in the World!
Stansberry Report Online - 4/20/2006 
Hidden 1,000 feet beneath the surface of the Rocky Mountains lies the largest untapped oil reserve in the world. It is more than 2 TRILLION barrels  On August 8, 2005 President Bush mandated its extraction. In three and a half years of high oil prices none has been extracted. With this motherload of oil why are we still fighting over off-shore drilling?
They reported this stunning news:  We have more oil inside our borders, than all the other proven reserves on earth. Here are the official estimates:
- 8-times as much oil as Saudi Arabia
- 18-times as much oil as Iraq
- 21-times as much oil as Kuwait
- 22-times as much oil as Iran
- 500-times as much oil as Yemen
- and it's all right here in the Western United States .
HOW can this BE? HOW can we NOT BE extracting this? Because the environmentalists and others have blocked all efforts to help America become independent of foreign oil! Again, we are letting a small group of people dictate our lives and our economy.....WHY?
James Bartis, lead researcher with the study says we've got more oil in this very compact area than the entire Middle East -more than 2 TRILLION barrels untapped.  That's more than all the proven oil reserves of crude oil in the world today, reports The Denver Post.
Don't think 'OPEC' will drop its price - even with this find?  Think again!  It's all about the competitive marketplace, - it has to. Think OPEC just might be funding the environmentalists?
Got your attention/ire up yet?  Hope so!  Now, while you're thinking about it .... and hopefully P.O'd, do this:
3. Pass this along.   If you don't take a little time to do this, then you should stifle yourself the next time you want to complain about gas prices--- because by doing NOTHING, you've forfeited your right to complain
--------
Now I just wonder what would happen in this country if every one of you sent this to every one in your address book.
By the way...this is all true. Check it out at the link below!!!
GOOGLE it or follow this link.  It will blow your mind.

http://www.usgs.gov/newsroom/article.asp?ID=1911

I did follow the link, and it does look impressive, but with oil reserves, there is many a slip between finding them and recovering them. Jay Hanson presents a useful analogy in a recent post at: AMERICA 2.0!

Imagine having a motor scooter with a five-gallon tank, but the nearest gas station is six gallons away. You cannot fill your tank with trips to the gas station because you burn more than you can bring back—it’s impossible for you to cover your overhead (the size of your bankroll and the price of the gas are irrelevant). You might as well put your scooter up on blocks because you are “out of gas”—forever. It’s the same with the American economy: if we must spend more-than-one unit of energy to produce enough goods and services to buy one unit of energy, it will be impossible for us to cover our overhead. At that point, America’s economic machine is “out of gas”—forever. More on energy basics at ENERGETIC LIMITS TO GROWTH

The point is that oil has to be fairly  easy to get or it might as well not exist at all. So that is one problem with this set of elaborate claims.

There are plenty of other problems as well, which I learned when I followed the advice in the article and Googled “Bakken Formation”.

There is a very thoughtful and well documented analysis in The Oil Drum written as response to the email referenced USGS report. For the analysis, go to the article. Here are the conclusions:

Conclusions

1. The Bakken shale has produced about 111 million barrels of oil during the last 50+ years in Montana and North Dakota.

2. Total Bakken production is still rising, and producing at the rate of 75,000 BOPD in October 2007.

3. Because of the highly variable nature of shale reservoirs, the characteristics of the historical Bakken production, and the fact that per-well rates seem to have peaked, it seems unlikely that total Bakken production will exceed 2x to 3x current rate of 75,000 BOPD.

4. The latest boom in Bakken production is driven by the application of horizontal wells and hydraulic fracturing technology, which has added about 70 million barrels of production in 7 years. Ultimate recovery of the already-drilled wells should be at least double this volume.

5. The USGS estimates the mean volume of technically recoverable hydrocarbons to be 3,649 million barrels of oil. This is roughly 7 to 12 times the size of already known resources.

6. Based on current production and areas likely to be drilled, the USGS estimate of technically recovery resources seems optimistic.

7. The Bakken potential resource, while large by US onshore field standards, will have only a minor effect on US production or imports. Using 2006 US imports and consumption for comparison, the Bakken undiscovered resource of 3,649 million barrels of oil, if subsequently discovered and fully developed, would provide us with the equivalent of six months of oil consumption or 10 months of imports, spread over 20 or more years. In reality, the reserves developed are likely to be many times smaller than this value.

8. The October 2007 production rate of 75,000 BOPD amounts only 0.4% of US oil consumption, or 0.6% of imports.

9. Per-well Bakken production peaked in August 2005 at 116 barrels a day, and was down to 79 barrels a day in October 2007. If the Bakken production history in the 1990s can be used as a guide, the peaking of per-well production may portend a peak in total Bakken production.

Emphasis is mine.

The Snopes conclusion:

MIXTURE OF TRUE AND FALSE

Moreover, the report also noted that even under the "high growth assumptions," an oil shale production level of 1 million barrels per day (about 10% of the amount of oil the U.S. currently imports daily) is "probably more than 20 years in the future," and depends upon scientists overcoming some substantial obstacles first:

  • But developments of the resource hinges on overcoming economic, technical and environmental obstacles, Bartis said.
  • "No work has been done on the impacts of development and ways to mitigate those impacts," he said.
  • For example, shale development requires large expenditures of water and energy, produces air pollution and carbon emissions and leaves toxic byproducts that could endanger the environment.
5. December 2009 23:34 by Kal | Comments (0) | Permalink
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