Drilling and Blissful Ignorance

Excellent piece by Charles Krauthammer.

http://townhall.com/Columnists/CharlesKrauthammer/2008/08/01/drilling_an...

WASHINGTON -- House Speaker Nancy Pelosi opposes lifting the moratorium on drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and on the Outer Continental Shelf. She won't even allow it to come to a vote. With $4 gas having massively shifted public opinion in favor of domestic production, she wants to protect her Democratic members from having to cast an anti-drilling election-year vote. Moreover, given the public mood, she might even lose. This cannot be permitted. Why? Because as she explained to Politico: "I'm trying to save the planet; I'm trying to save the planet."

A lovely sentiment. But has Pelosi actually thought through the moratorium's actual effects on the planet?

Consider: 25 years ago, nearly 60 percent of U.S. petroleum was produced domestically. Today it's 25 percent. From its peak in 1970, U.S.

production has declined a staggering 47 percent. The world consumes 86 million barrels a day; the United States, roughly 20 million. We need the stuff to run our cars and planes and economy. Where does it come from?

Places like Nigeria where chronic corruption, environmental neglect and resulting unrest and instability lead to pipeline explosions, oil spills and illegal siphoning by the poverty-stricken population -- which leads to more spills and explosions. Just this week, two Royal Dutch Shell pipelines had to be shut down because bombings by local militants were causing leaks into the ground.

Compare the Niger Delta to the Gulf of Mexico where deep-sea U.S. oil rigs withstood Hurricanes Katrina and Rita without a single undersea well suffering a significant spill.

The United States has the highest technology to ensure the safest drilling. Today, directional drilling -- essentially drilling down, then sideways -- allows access to oil that in 1970 would have required a surface footprint more than three times as large. Additionally, the U.S. has one of the most extensive and least corrupt regulatory systems on the planet.

Does Pelosi imagine that with so much of America declared off-limits, the planet is less injured as drilling shifts to Kazakhstan and Venezuela and Equatorial Guinea? That Russia will be more environmentally scrupulous than we in drilling in its Arctic?

The net environmental effect of Pelosi's no-drilling willfulness is negative. Outsourcing U.S. oil production does nothing to lessen worldwide environmental despoliation. It simply exports it to more corrupt, less efficient, more unstable parts of the world -- thereby increasing net planetary damage.

Democrats want no oil from the American OCS or ANWR. But of course they do want more oil. From OPEC. From where Americans don't vote. From places Democratic legislators can't see. On May 13, Sen. Chuck Schumer -- deeply committed to saving just those pieces of the planet that might have huge reserves of American oil -- demanded that the Saudis increase production by a million barrels a day. It doesn't occur to him that by eschewing the slightest disturbance of the mating habits of the Arctic caribou, he is calling for the further exploitation of the pristine deserts of Arabia. In the name of the planet, mind you.

The other panacea, yesterday's rage, is biofuels: We can't drill our way out of the crisis, it seems, but we can greenly grow our way out. By now, however, it is blindingly obvious even to Democrats that biofuels are a devastating force for environmental degradation. It has led to the rape of "lungs of the world" rainforests in Indonesia and Brazil as huge tracts have been destroyed to make room for palm oil and sugar plantations.

Here in the U.S., one out of every three ears of corn is stuffed into a gas tank (by way of ethanol), causing not just food shortages abroad and high prices at home, but intensive increases in farming with all of the attendant environmental problems (soil erosion, insecticide pollution, water consumption, etc.).

This to prevent drilling on an area in the Arctic one-sixth the size of Dulles Airport that leaves untouched a refuge one-third the size of Britain.

There are a dizzying number of economic and national security arguments for drilling at home: a $700 billion oil balance-of-payment deficit, a gas tax (equivalent) levied on the paychecks of American workers and poured into the treasuries of enemy and terror-supporting regimes, growing dependence on unstable states of the Persian Gulf and Caspian basin. Pelosi and the Democrats stand athwart shouting: We don't care. We come to save the planet!

They seem blissfully unaware that the argument for their drill-there-not-here policy collapses on its own environmental terms.

No votes yet

Does Krauthammer suggest that we nationalize our oil companies? Because unless we do that, any oil would go to the oil companies who sell it on the open market to any country. (Sensor has pointed this out several times)

Krauthammer also makes this bogus claim: "Compare the Niger Delta to the Gulf of Mexico where deep-sea U.S. oil rigs withstood Hurricanes Katrina and Rita without a single undersea well suffering a significant spill."

When in fact, "Hurricanes Katrina and Rita Caused 124 Offshore Spills For A Total Of 743,700 Gallons. 554,400 gallons were crude oil and condensate from platforms, rigs and pipelines, and 189,000 gallons were refined products from platforms and rigs. Hurricanes Katrina and Rita Caused Six Offshore Spills Of 42,000 Gallons Or Greater. The largest of these was 152,250 gallons, well over the 100,000 gallon threshhold considered a “major spill.” {source}

Pink Slip

Crooks... Liars

Hi, good point pinkslip. I shouldn't argue the fact that there were oil spills as a result of hurricanes Katrina & Rita, but I think it's important to have all the facts. I decided that rather than satisfying myself with the information provided by the blog source you provided, I'd go and find a report/study done by of the actual damages. (below)

I have watched various documentaries about Katrina damage. I learned that there was also a tremendous amount of damage from inland sources such as; homes, gas stations, oil storages, old oil refineries, everyday household products, cleaning chemicals, etc caused an even yet untold amount of groundwater pollution.

I don't believe this should prevent us from getting oil domestically and stop sending all our money overseas to organizations and countries that sponsor terrorism, religious discrimination, racism, sharia law, oppression of women, etc. At least until new energy technology is created or enhanced. I'm sure we can agree on that.

http://www.mms.gov/tarprojects/581/44814183_MMS_Katrina_Rita_PL_Final%20...

from page 1 - Det Norske Veritas (DNV) performed an assessment of the damage to the Gulf of Mexico (GOM)
offshore pipelines resulting from the passage of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in August and
September 2005, under contract with the Department of Interior’s Mineral Management Service
(MMS). The objective was to determine what happened to pipelines during Hurricanes Katrina and
Rita, and how to minimize the damage to pipelines, and the disruption of the U. S. oil and gas
supplies originating in the GOM, as a result of hurricanes.
Study deliverables include a web-based damage mapping system concept, and report on damage
effects, potential root causes, industry practices, and data collection methods assessment.

SUMMARY on page 100 -
In summary, the majority of the damages, or all but 57 of the 542 damage reports, were attributed to damages at platforms, risers or from mechanical forces causing an outside force related failure. The 57 damage reports are for segments that had hurricane impacts that resulted in loss of cover, spans, or movement as a result of hurricane forces. The majority of these 57 pipelines, or 45 pipeline segments of the 57, had a portion of the line exposed, or spanned as a result of changing bottom conditions, and did not suffer failures other than the loss of cover or spans that were created. The remaining 12 damage reports of this category could be considered as pipelines that could possibly have performed better than they did in comparison to design expectations mostly related to possible on bottom stability concerns. The group of 12 pipeline segments out of the 542 total set would equate to about a 2% rate of performance that was lower than design expectation for the total set of damage reports studied. If the entire pipeline mileage in the GOM was considered, this rate would be significantly below 1%. Therefore, it is DNV’s conclusion that the vast majority of the pipelines performed very well as a result of the hurricane forces, and pipeline damages would have been significantly reduced had there not been such significant impacts to platforms, risers, or the impact related outside force damages that occurred. The minimization of environmental impacts and protection of life is an indicator of the commitment to safe operations in the GOMR and the industry. The hurricane preparedness and industry practices for response and recovery are producing the desired results. Continuing the
activities that are in place in the GOMR should yield similar results in the future.

I decided that rather than satisfying myself with the information provided by the blog source you provided, I'd go and find a report/study done by of the actual damages. (below)

If you'd actually read the "blog source", you'd see that they reference the exact same report that you "found".

Pink Slip

I did read it. That's how I found the link to the mentioned report. It was the blogger's opinion. I didn't read that the blogger or any of the commentors had gone and done any of their own expert and professional inspections in the Gulf.

It sounds as if your only issue with drilling is the possibility of future spills? Is this correct? I'm not sure why you don't address all the points made in Krauthammer's article above. I think they are all valid concerns. I don't want oils spills either. Who would? We need to consider all the factors, not just one.

On May 13, Sen. Chuck Schumer -- deeply committed to saving just those pieces of the planet that might have huge reserves of American oil -- demanded that the Saudis increase production by a million barrels a day. It doesn't occur to him that by eschewing the slightest disturbance of the mating habits of the Arctic caribou, he is calling for the further exploitation of the pristine deserts of Arabia. In the name of the planet, mind you.

 Here in the U.S., one out of every three ears of corn is stuffed
into a gas tank (by way of ethanol), causing not just food shortages abroad and high prices at home, but intensive increases in farming with all of the attendant environmental problems (soil erosion, insecticide pollution, water consumption, etc.).

This to prevent drilling on an area in the Arctic one-sixth the size of Dulles Airport that leaves untouched a refuge one-third the size of Britain.

There are a dizzying number of economic and national security arguments for drilling at home: a $700 billion oil balance-of-payment deficit, a gas tax (equivalent) levied on the paychecks of American workers and poured into the treasuries of enemy and terror-supporting regimes, growing dependence on unstable states of the Persian Gulf and Caspian basin. Pelosi and the Democrats stand athwart shouting: We don't care. We come to save the planet!

They seem blissfully unaware that the argument for their drill-there-not-here policy collapses on its own environmental terms.

It was the blogger's opinion

The info I quoted was taken from the government report. It wasn't some blogger's opinion.

It sounds as if your only issue with drilling is the possibility of future spills?

No, I was pointing out a misleading statement from Krauthammer. But 1derful, question for you---do we get to keep all of the oil we would get from drilling? Or would it be sold on the open market?

Pink Slip

My answer to your question is that I would be thrilled to have American drilling companies selling oil to anyone who wants to pay them for it. $$$$$$$$$ streaming into America.

You see, either way it's good for OUR economy. Selling vs. Buying? What would you rather be doing?

You see, either way it's good for OUR economy

Oil companies are making record profits right now. How's our economy doing?

Pink Slip

Yes. Thank you for mentioning that. Perhaps if more drilling were allowed it could help kickstart the economy. Back in the "good old days" this country used to be a HUGE producer of all kinds of exports. Now we're the biggest importer of goods. source
We rank 3rd for Exports. source 

And we rank 40th in Exports when looking at "per capita".  (same source)

We rank #1 for consumption of oil.  Then why aren't we producing more of our own?  WTF?  That's what every American should be screaming about.  Look where we rank in exporting oil.

Now let's look at how much just Exxon paid in taxes last year out of it's profits:
A. In 2007, Exxon disclosed income taxes of $30 billion on revenue of $390 billion and net income of $40.6 billion, a new record.
Including income, sales-based and all other taxes, Exxon paid $105.7 billion in 2007 taxes, or about 44% of its revenue. Averaged out during 2003-07, the company calculated that it paid about $13 billion a year in U.S. taxes. source

Because we use to heat houses, we use it to make tires, asphalt, plastics and on and on the list goes.

If we reduced recycled more, and used less raw materials, we could lower our dependence on oil.

Switching from heating source to another will be difficult but it can be done, for those that heat with oil.

Then there are different types and quality of oil being imported for different uses.

Focus on oil?

"How Much Will Natural Gas Cost This Winter?

Each year, EIA projects the average price, consumption, and total cost of natural gas during the upcoming winter for a household in the Midwest. (The Midwest is used because more than 75 percent of its 25.1 million households heat their homes with natural gas–the highest concentration of any region.) For the heating season of 2007-2008, EIA estimates that Midwest homeowners will pay about $1.19 per therm (1 therm=100,000 Btu, which is the heat content of about 100 cubic feet of gas), or about $12.26 per Mcf, for natural gas this winter (Table 1)."

http://www.eia.doe.gov/neic/brochure/oil_gas/rngp/index.html

Because it takes fuel to feed the world and transport that food to our Allies.

In fact, JUST IN MARCH of this year, America exported 1,100,000 TONS of food to feed the world.

It takes alot of gasoline to grow and transport that food to the world.
http://query.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=9A02E6D71E3FE433A25754C0A...

Maybe we could lower gas prices by letting the rest of the world STARVE.

Don't blame me,
I didn't vote for a
socialist.

We can't export what we don't have

Pink Slip

And to add, there are contract stipulations that do not allow for exporting.

"The Trans-Alaska Pipeline Authorization Act of 1973, while opening vast oil reserves around Prudhoe Bay for production, effectively requires that Alaskan oil be consumed domestically, not exported. As a result, petroleum development on the Alaskan North Slope and in California has been greatly restrained. "

http://www.cato.org/pubs/pas/pa-227es.html'

As an example.

Exactly! You're catching on skippy.
If you don't go drilling, you don't have it.  Money mouth 

Depending on where you go for your information, we have plenty of it waiting to be dug up along with natural gas, and how about the latest - gas hydrates.

http://pubs.usgs.gov/fs/2007/3066/pdf/FS07-3066_508.pdf

http://energy.er.usgs.gov/regional_studies/gulf_coast/gulf_coast_assessm...

http://energy.usgs.gov/other/gashydrates/

We have 2-3% of the world's oil reserves. But for the sake of argument--let's say go ahead and drill. Shouldn't the oil companies drill on land they're already leasing first? Why are you so quick to give them more land, when they're not drilling on what they've already got?

Pink Slip

I don't think anyone's saying to "give them land". It's about giving them rights to drill, and rights to start building refineries again. The technology is now available to take the CO2 out of the air so what's the holdup? Special Interest groups? Concerns about the environment? We've got the strictest regulations in the world regarding protecting the environment and pollution control. We've also advanced a bit in the past few decades at cleaning up spills if and when they happen. So what's the holdup? A. Fear (in my opinion)

First job in High School.

Gas station, car wash tire shop, all in one.

23 cents a gallon for regular 25 cents for High test.

Over the decades the cost of fuel made from raw materials has risen, by way of our economy and system we have.

All during this time, prices, costs have all risen and will continue to rise.

If we really think that costs will come down because of drilling, where ever that is, we are really out of touch with reality.

The days of cheap gas are gone, just like the days when my Dad got a hot dog and a beer for a nickel.

They CAN build refineries right now. But they won't. Why?

"The Wall Street Journal reported oil companies are not building new refineries because it would be bad for their bottom line. “Building a new refinery from scratch, Exxon believes, would be bad for long-term business.”

Not because of regulation.

Pink Slip

Pink, thank you for that link. I'm reading through it now and finding a lot of information (or claims) about oil company bad behavior and market manipulation. It's very interesting and I'd like to do some research on it. Thanks again. :)
>>>>>>>>>>>

OK, I did some research on the special interest group "Public Citizen" since it was their testimony before a house subcommittee I was reading. Here's what I dug up and it's very interesting as well. (Keep in mind, that I'm not arguing with you that the big oil companies do some dirty deeds).

http://www.undueinfluence.com/public_citizen.htm

Click on the links for each of their Foundation (contributors). It's crazy! Just check it out. :) OMG! The whole system is corrupt.

1derful--if it makes you feel any better, the info that Public Citizen put together came from a Wall St Journal article. The full text of the article can be found here. Here's the exact quote from the WSJ:

Exxon Mobil Corp. says it believes that, by 2030, hybrid gasoline-and-electric
cars and light trucks will account for nearly 30% of new-vehicle sales in the U.S.
and Canada. That surge is part of a broader shift toward fuel efficiency that
Exxon thinks will cause fuel consumption by North American cars and light
trucks to peak around 2020—and then start to fall. “For that reason, we
wouldn’t build a grassroots refinery” in the U.S., Rex Tillerson, Exxon’s
chairman and chief executive, said in a recent interview. Exxon has continued to
expand the capacity of its existing refineries. But building a new refinery from
scratch, Exxon believes, would be bad for long-term business.

Pink Slip

(Why is this box getting so narrow!!!!!!!!?)

Yes. I did read that. I do read what I talk about, but I'm always careful about the sources that gather that information. They tend to present information out of context and in a way that will further their own personal agenda.

I'm not slamming you and I don't want you to feel that you need to be on the defensive. I just hope that you will take a look at the people that are behind what they are saying. If you want me to, I'll go back and copy/past some of it here, but I didn't because I feel that it's something that one needs to do on their own time at their own pace and in their own way. Trust me...It's creepy stuff. I'd rather you go dig into it yourself like I did.

Anyway, here's just a tiny portion of the background on The Schumann Foundation (the major contributor to Public Citizen):

The Schumann Foundation's investment portfolio contains:

* 2000 shares of British Petroleum;
* 5,000 shares Columbia Gas Systems;
* 4,200 shares Conoco, Inc.;
* 3,900 shares Keyspan Energy (natural gas distribution);
* 10,000 shares Noble Affiliates (oil & gas exploration and development);
* 10,200 shares Pioneer Natural Resource Company (oil & gas exploration and development);
* 10,000 shares Royal Dutch Petroleum Company (Royal Dutch / Shell Oil holding company);
* 10,000 shares Shell Transportation and Trading Company (another Royal Dutch / Shell Oil holding company); plus
* 12,500 shares of Ford Motor Company.

ORIGIN OF THE WEALTH: Florence Ford and John Schumann settled in Montclair, New Jersey soon after they married in 1917. During their forty-seven year marriage, they amassed a considerable fortune, combining inherited wealth from Florence Ford's father, one of the founders of the IBM Corporation, with John Schumann's business success, which culminated with his presidency of the General Motors Acceptance Corporation. In 1961, they set up the Florence and John Schumann Foundation .

They're part owners of what they are supposed to be against! Hypocrisy and fraud happens on both sides. Corruption knows no party or boundary.

Haha...ok, ok. I'm not trying to defend Public Citizen by any means. That's why I tried to inform you that the substance of my point--that oil companies are not building new refineries because it's not cost-effective for them---was backed up by an article quoting an Exxon chief executive. And the article was in the Wall St Journal. It really has nothing to do with Public Citizen, and I apologize for bringing them into this.

Any comment on oil companies building new refineries?

Pink Slip

Yeah. I think it's shitty. I'm glad you dug that up.

Can we agree though that the cancer of corruption across the board is beyond control? There's no one out there anymore in government, big corporate businesses, organized or institutionalized religion, special interest groups, etc that aren't affected by it.

Catching onto what?

What has been coming at us, like a speeding bullet, but "we" spend each day, burning lights and driving cars and trucks that have some of worst gas mileage, send more to the waste stream that most any country and refuse to use less or change our mind set that there is an abundance of everything for us, because we live in the U.S.

The "we" in this equation is mostly powerless to effect change beyond what we do on an individual basis.

While we continue to use fuels, oil, gas and coal for electricity and other markets, the companies that supply those will be looking for ways to recoup their investments.

Guess how.

The costs will be passed onto us, the consumers or the "we."

Reported just minutes before this thread started:
http://swampbubbles.com/bubble/oil-falls-118-storm-danger-abates-demand-...

This thread has a link to Bloomberg.com (http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=aNcazlY9y8BA&refer=home)
which contains THIS QUOTE.
"OPEC boosted output by 0.7 percent in July to 32.825 million barrels a day, a Bloomberg News survey showed today. The gains were led by Nigeria, which had its highest production figure since March, and Saudi Arabia. The kingdom's output reached a three-year high. "

So once again, increased production causes the price of oil to drop.to $118 a barrel today.

Imagine if OPEC just thought that American oil companies were allowed to start drilling in the Gulf and ANWR.

OPEC would scramble to lower prices and undercut domestic oil production AND speculators would sell oil futures NOW in order to save some of their money.

Meanwhile, 81% of Americans support drilling for our own oil in our own country and Nancy Pelosi in concert with the rest of the DNC continues to make America slaves to OPEC.
http://www.reuters.com/article/pressRelease/idUS193217+04-Jun-2008+PRN20...

Don't blame me,
I didn't vote for a
socialist.

"Oil dropped as much as 2.8 percent as the services sectors in the U.S. and U.K. contracted in July, and European retail sales declined by the most in at least 13 years in June. ."

If it was as simple as pumping more oil from any source is the key to the decline.

Less consumption and demand have also caused the prices to drop.

Because the price of gas has ALSO gone up in Europe.

http://goeurope.about.com/gi/dynamic/offsite.htm?zi=1/XJ&sdn=goeurope&cd...

Don't blame me,
I didn't vote for a
socialist.

Imagine if OPEC just thought that American oil companies were allowed to start drilling in the Gulf and ANWR

Capital idea Thing! We'll just keep "telling" them we're going to drill in ANWR. If that doesn't work, we could try the Jedi Mind Trick.

Pink Slip

According to the Reuters poll data, you are part of the 19% who somehow thinks that wind and solar power will somehow magically drop gas prices and run cars?

WOW! Looks like the puppetmasters who control Nanci Pelosi also have their strings attached to you.

Or is it a Jedi Mind Trick that Howard Dean is using on you and Nanci?

Don't blame me,
I didn't vote for a
socialist.

According to the Reuters poll data, you are part of the 19% who somehow thinks that wind and solar power will somehow magically drop gas prices

It's not magic, it's economics. If demand falls, so do prices. The article you referenced said exactly that:

"U.S. gasoline demand fell for a 15th consecutive week, as motorists cope with high fuel prices by driving less"

Pink Slip

Like Newton proved, what goes up....

"RYSSDAL: So, here we sit, down 20 percent in the price of a barrel of crude oil in about three weeks. What gives?

BEUTEL: Well, it's been demand destruction. The curious thing here is that the consumer has had a lot more power than he or she were aware that they did have. Demand for gasoline, which is the main item which is produced by crude oil and the biggest item that we use here in the U.S. . . . Gasoline demand is down between 2.2 and 4.1 percent, depending on which source or aggregate one uses. But that's been enough to pull gasoline prices down almost 75 cents a gallon.

RYSSDAL: What about things like speculation and the role of supply shortages? Are you buying any of that?

BEUTEL: Well, it wasn't traditional speculation by regular commodities speculators that pushed prices higher. It was really refugees from stocks and bonds that came into the market last August and September when Ben Bernanke tipped his hand and let everybody know that he was going to cut interest rates. That, in turn, put pressure on the dollar, and we saw a huge amount of new buying come into the market in September last year that was from investment money. Some of those people may have been getting out recently, particularly because the dollar has been steadying recently."

http://marketplace.publicradio.org/display/web/2008/08/05/oil_swing/

Demand destruction, couple with an increase in the worlds production have brought the cost of oil down.

"Oil falls as low as $118 on demand concerns

By MADLEN READ – 2 hours ago

NEW YORK (AP) — Oil traders sent crude prices tumbling as low as $118 a barrel Tuesday on the growing belief that a U.S. economic slowdown and high energy costs are curbing consumer demand for gasoline and other petroleum products.

Crude oil finished the day just above $119 a barrel — its lowest settlement price since early May.

Crude's decline is giving Americans more relief at the pump. A gallon of regular gasoline on average fell another penny overnight to $3.871, according to auto club AAA, the Oil Price Information Service and Wright Express. Gas prices have fallen four straight weeks for the first time since December; prices are off 5.9 percent from their July high as U.S. motorists cut back on their driving to save money."

http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5i5TtajgUpSm7KY5jf-lCJGHBB-tAD92CBA901

The market place has reacted and the prices are dropping.

So, if we drive less, use more efficient cars, etc., we can control the cost of gasoline in the present tense and not in 2020.

As Pink and I keep bring up, why won't the oil companies drill one the off shore leases and land they have now?

If oil companies want to drill so badly why don’t they drill on the land and off shore leases they already have? Oil companies currently have 68 million acres in undeveloped oil leases outside the moratorium area, where they could still drill if they wanted to.

http://resourcescommittee.house.gov/index.php?option=com_content&task=vi...

Even if they felt so inclined to drill off shore, there aren’t any ships that can do it. Not for 5 years at the earliest anyway.

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06/19/business/19drillship.html?_r=2&hp&oref...

The Energy and Information Administration concluded in a 2007 report that:
The projections in the OCS (Outer Continental Shelf) access case indicate that access to the Pacific, Atlantic, and eastern Gulf regions would not have a significant impact on domestic crude oil and natural gas production or prices before 2030.

http://www.eia.doe.gov/oiaf/aeo/otheranalysis/ongr.html

America can not drill its way to oil independence. I’m sorry, that is the reality of our situation. Even if we could drill off shore and in ANWR we’re only talking about a couple of million barrels per day max…wait for it…in 10-20 years. We currently use 20 million barrels per day. Of course, we could also find out that there is little or no oil on the continental shelf or in ANWR. Remember- everyone is guessing up to now.

In the end, the global oil companies want to lock up supply, control it. I’ll make a prediction right now…if big oil gets a hold of the leases for the continental shelf and ANWR that in 5-10 years when oil prices are at $200 per barrel, they will be demanding access to the “oil” shale out west for a way for America to energy to become independence.

It was NPR already, yesterday.

What is the Barnett Shale?

The Barnett Shale is a hydrocarbon-producing geological formation of great economic significance to Texas. It consists of sedimentary rocks and the productive part of the formation is estimated to stretch from the city of Dallas west and south, covering 5,000 square miles (13,000 km²) and at least 18 counties.

Some experts say that the Barnett Shale is the largest onshore natural gas field in the United States. The field name for the productive portion of the Barnett Shale formation has been designated as the Newark, East Field by the Texas Railroad Commission.

"History of the Barnett Shale

John W. Barnett settled in the San Saba County during late 19th century and named a local stream the Barnett Stream. In the early 20th century during a mapping exercise, geologists noted a thick black organic-rich shale in an outcrop close to the stream and named it the Barnett Shale.

The Barnett Shale has acted as an important source and sealing cap rock for conventional oil and gas reservoirs in the area. It was thought that only a few of the thicker sections close to Fort Worth would support economic drilling. It was not until the 1980's with new advances in horizontal drilling and well fracturing technology used by Mitchell Energy, a small independent, that the potential of the Barnett Shale was realized. Significant drilling activity did not begin until gas prices increased in the late 1990's. Devon Energy acquired Mitchell Energy in 2002, and has established itself as the leading producer from the Barnett Shale. The success that independents have had in producing from the Barnett Shale is beginning to attract the interest of the large majors, like Exxon."

http://www.rrc.state.tx.us/barnettshale/index.html

I was talking about this...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oil_shale

Nasty business, but the oil companies will want to control it as well.

We'll see it on the Big Oil/Republican list of must have " to ensure American energy independence" in about 5-10...

Like this?

"Oil production estimates

The greatest Bakken oil production comes from Elm Coulee Oil Field, Richland County, Montana, where production began in 2000 and is expected to ultimately total 270 million barrels. In 2007, production from Elm Coulee averaged 53,000 barrels per day — more than the entire state of Montana a few years earlier.[13]

New interest developed in 2007 when EOG Resources out of Houston, Texas reported that a single well it had drilled into an oil-rich layer of shale below Parshall, North Dakota was anticipated to produce 700,000 barrels of oil [14]. This, combined with other factors, including an oil-drilling tax break enacted by the state of North Dakota in 2007,[15] shifted attention in the Bakken from Montana to the North Dakota side. The number of wells drilling the North Dakota Bakken jumped from 300 in 2006[16] to 457 in 2007.[17] Those same sources show oil production in the North Dakota Bakken increasing 229%, from 2.2 million barrels in 2006 to 7.4 million barrels in 2007."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bakken_Formation

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