Posts filed under “Energy”

Oil Production

The Telegraph – US to overtake Saudi Arabia in oil as China’s water runs dry
It is official. The US will overtake Saudi Arabia to become the world’s top oil producer by 2017. The International Energy Agency (IEA) said in its world outlook for 2012 this morning that the US will be a net exporter of gas by 2020, with all the vast implications of abundant cheap gas for its chemical, plastics, glass, and steel industries. “The United States, which currently imports around 20 per cent of its total energy needs, becomes all but self-sufficient in net terms – a dramatic reversal of the trend seen in most other energy importing countries,” it said. This is entirely due to the shale and gas revolution. North America as a whole will become a significant net exporter.

The chart below shows the history of Saudi and U.S. oil production. The last time the US produced more crude oil than Saudi Arabia occurred from 1982 to 1990. Prior to that, the U.S. produced more oil in the early 1970s.

                                                                              Click to enlarge

US crude oil production fell from 10 million barrels a day in 1970 (not shown above) to a weather-adjusted 5 million barrels a day in 2003. It has been rising thanks to Bakken field production, as the chart of North Dakota’s production shows below.

                                                                         Click to enlarge

North Dakota accounted for a little more than 1% of U.S. production in 2003 (cyan bars above). Now it accounts for 11% and is still going parabolic.

But it is not just North Dakota’s oil production that has ramped higher. Canadian oil production is booming for the same reason. As the chart below shows, Canada accounted for 19% of all U.S. crude oil imports in 2005. It now accounts for 37% and is also rising in a parabolic fashion.

                                                                           Click to enlarge

The U.S. imports 3 million barrels a day from Canada and produces 6.2 million barrels a day. So, the U.S. consumes 9.2 million barrels of crude oil a day from North American production, which almost equals total Saudi production of 9.9 million barrels a day. When viewed from this perspective, it does not seem outlandish that the U.S. might exceed Saudi production in a few years.

Source: Bianco Research

Category: Energy, Think Tank

NYC Con Edison Plant Explosion (Video)

Source: Mashable

Category: Energy, Video

New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Connecticut Nuclear Plants In Path of Storm

Hurricane Sandy May Score a Direct Hit On Spent Fuel Pools at Nuclear Plant

Preface:  We hope and expect that the severity of the hurricane is being overblown, and that the nuclear plants in the Northeast will ride out the storm without any incident.  


We noted Friday that .

Nuclear expert Arnie Gundersen says that there are actually 26 nuclear plants in the path of the hurricane, and that the spent fuel pools in the plants don’t have backup pumps (summary via EneNews):

  • You’ll hear in the next 2 days, “We’ve safely shutdown the plant”
  • What Fukushima taught us is that doesn’t stop the decay heat
  • You need the diesels to keep the reactors cool
  • 26 plants in the East Coast are in the area where Sandy is likely to hit
  • Fuel pools not cooled by diesels, no one wanted to buy them
  • If recent refuel, hot fuel will throw off more and more moisture from pool
  • Reactor buildings not meant to handle the high humidity
  • Fuel pool liner not really designed to approach boiling water, may unzip if water gets too hot
  • A lot of problems with allowing fuel pool to over
  • Need water in around 2 days if hot fuel in pool
  • The only fall-back if power is lost is to let fuel pools heat up

EneNews also reports that the hurricane is forecast to directly hit the Oyster Creek nuclear plant and that – while the plant is currently shut down for refueling – it still might very well have new, very hot fuel in the fuel pools:

Oyster Creek Nuclear Generating Station is located near New Jersey’s shoreline in an area forecast to take a direct hit from Hurricane Sandy: “The current ‘track center’ for the landfall path is central New Jersey pointing Sandy in a path that would hit Oyster Creek nuclear station.” -SimplyInfo

path Hurricane Sandy May Score a Direct Hit On Spent Fuel Pools at Nuclear Plant


Read More

Category: Energy, Science, Think Tank

Risks from Flooding to Numerous U.S. Nuclear Facilities

NRC Whistleblowers: Risk of Nuclear Melt-Down In U.S. Is Even HIGHER Than It Was at Fukushima Numerous American nuclear reactors are built within flood zones: As one example, on the following map (showing U.S. nuclear power plants built within earthquake zones), the red lines indicate the Mississippi and Missouri rivers: Numerous dam failures have occurred…Read More

Category: Energy, Think Tank

Oil & Tonight’s Debate

Oil & Tonight’s Debate David R. Kotok October 22, 2012     The presidential debate tonight on foreign policy will quickly return to domestic economics if, as and when each of the antagonists can wiggle it in. In two more weeks we will quickly go from speculative uncertainty to new forecasts. The Senate composition will…Read More

Category: Energy, Politics, Think Tank

Too Much Natural Gas?

A Natural Gas Bounty Is Turning Against Producers click for ginormous graphic Source: NYT  

Category: Digital Media, Energy

No Till Farming Practices

    Interesting discussion regarding new ways to plant and fertilize: The most popular fuel-reducing strategy involves a radically new way of planting seeds. Instead of breaking up the ground with a plow to plant seeds, no-till farming leaves the remains of last year’s crop on the surface. Drills punch through this mat of vegetation…Read More

Category: Energy, Food and Drink

Gas Market Stung by Rapid Traders

Source: WSJ

Category: Energy, Think Tank

Are the Wars in the Middle East and North Africa Really About Oil?

The Wars in the Middle East and North Africa Are NOT Just About Oil … They’re Also About GAS The Iraq war was really about oil, according to Alan Greenspan, John McCain, George W. Bush, Sarah Palin, a high-level National Security Council officer and others. Dick Cheney made Iraqi’s oil fields a national security priority…Read More

Category: Energy, Think Tank, War/Defense

In the Pipeline

I love this graphic from BusinessWeek:   click for ginormous graphic     Source: The Oil Hub Where Traders Are Making Millions Matthew Philips Business Week,September 27, 2012

Category: Digital Media, Energy