October 2, 2007 | Leave a Comment

Last Friday the Weekend Link List had a piece about a well drilled in northeast Tennessee. The surprising volumes of oil that the first well made and the difficulties of the industry trying to get to the reservoir and get the oil to market are just huge. This, plus the “no go” still on the arctic north slope, the prohibition off shore for most all of the US and the utter lack of willingness to use other ideas about locating reservoirs paints a dire picture for the future.

In order to get to the new energy and fuels, we need to get to the time they’re marketable, with our economy still intact. Yesterday we looked at the and their post by Gail the Actuary about the potential consequences of the either the peak of oil production and/or a collapse of the credit market impacting our economy.

On point today is an article posted by 321energy last week that considers the differences in thinking between the Russian effort to find and sell oil and the common western theory of finding oil reserves. Tilted “Confessions of an ‘Ex’ Peak Oil Believer” by F. William Engdahl, it plows right into blaming the whole problem on Dick Chaney and his friends in ‘Big Oil’. With some 77% of the production under the control of regimes acting as governments that idea is a pretty tough sell to anyone at least alert to what the situation is. But the writer has hit on an idea that is really overlooked and is being discarded out of sheer willful ignorance disguised as expertise.

Mr. Engdahl is definitely a professional writer. Once one gets past the opening that enters into the blame mode and starts in on the body of the text you’ll find a lucid and engaging article that makes the case for the Russian theory of oil geology to get wider application. See:

Although Engdalh isn’t real clear on the current state of the workings of the Russian technique, he offers enough of the basics to make one think that there must be something to this.

I tend to agree. One example is the amount of dinosaur remains needed to match the reserve in the Saudi giant oil field Ghawar – some 19 miles cubed (that’s right, cubed 19 x 19 x 19) which seems outlandish if only by the concentration of all that in one spot. I find that idea taken on out to include all the oil used and in current reserve to be one incredible cube – which may be possible, but adding in the unrecoverable oil resource the numbers get, well . . . lots and lots of dead dinosaur. So where is the calcium carbonate from all those bones?

It seems pretty clear that the geology leadership has ran their ship aground for lack of a willingness to see other ideas for locating oil and gas reserves. With the US and most of the developed world on a knife’s edge on supply and pricing the foolish unwillingness to look other ways is myopic at best and simply stupid at worst.

I admit I almost didn’t read this piece due to the dopey unnecessary idea that all this is the blame of Dick Cheny and his pals. But now I realize it was an attempt at satire. This is good writing on a notion that deserves attention by drillers worldwide. And good luck! The rest of us need some time to get the alternatives going and hopefully without a huge economic shock.


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