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« GOP revolt on Iraq? | Main | Fight for flights »

Oct 13, 2006

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Bubba

"Indeed, nothing would be more potent for Democrats now than to capture energy security and all the issues that surround it — from improving our trade deficit by not importing more oil....."

That implies utilizing domestic sources in ways not now used. That would involve chucking some sacred cow left wing environmental issues.

It will not happen.

Energy Watcher

Bubba is wrong. There isn't enough domestic energy for us to keep running business as usual in America. Period. We can drill ANWR, offshore, and in Yellowstone (and pretend those actions don't have consequences to our environment, our communities, etc) and we will not be able to supply our own present day consumption of oil. Ethanol is not going to save the day, and biodiesel will likely hit its stride as a niche fuel for municipal fleets of buses, garbage trucks, and public works vehicles.

Anyone who tells you this is so is lying, and they are lying because they believe the American public can't handle the truth. The truth is that the era of cheap oil is ending, and that conservation, efficiency, and demand reduction are the only ways out.

Developing additional supplies is not likely to ease significant amounts of pain because supply-focused strategies only delay needed adjustments. The recent "huge" discovery in the Gulf of Mexico is a perfect example. It is projected to have between 3 and 15 billion barrels of oil, which is a little over 6 months to 2 years of US oil consumption. That's nothing to build a future on.

Meanwhile, many older, mature oil fields in the US and around the world are slipping further into decline. For anyone truly interested in what's going on in terms of oil supply, demand, and future implications, forget Tom Friedman. He's clueless.

Instead, start reading www.theoildrum.com, which is a multi-author blog with posts from oil industry insiders, geologists, and physicists.

For those interested on knowing more about the recent "big discovery" in the gulf and how it essentially does nothing for the US, look at the post below in particular, and scroll down to the section titled "The Big Picture." If that piques your interest, read the whole thing, and read the Peak Oil primer.

http://www.theoildrum.com/story/2006/9/8/11274/83638

Jeffrey Sykes

Isn't Carville the guy who coined "It's the economy, stupid."

He seems to have a knack for outlining a winning strategy.

RB

I have been reading the oil drum once a week, for a couple of months. I have not read the primer as suggested above, but have been reading, the current posts on the day I read it ( usually Sunday's ).

I highly recommend it. Particularly this:
http://www.theoildrum.com/tag/Oregon

It is about a community that is proud of its rural nature and whishes to keep it into the future through conscious planning.

Bubba


"Developing additional supplies is not likely to ease significant amounts of pain because supply-focused strategies only delay needed adjustments. The recent "huge" discovery in the Gulf of Mexico is a perfect example. It is projected to have between 3 and 15 billion barrels of oil, which is a little over 6 months to 2 years of US oil consumption. That's nothing to build a future on."


Leaving aside the "6 to 2 years" statement, you don't consider an increase of up to 50% in domestic reserves ALONE to be significant?

Others disagree withe your information, including people who are willing to back up their beliefs with capital.

Excerpt:

"Chevron would not estimate how much its reserves would be increased as a result of the test, nor would Devon. But Chevron said that it now believes the lower tertiary region of the Gulf could hold reserves of 3 billion to 15 billion barrels of oil. Total established U.S. reserves are estimated at less than 30 billion barrels.

"Until now no one was sure if the oil in this play would flow," said Zoe Sutherland, North American oil exploration analyst for Wood Mackenzie, a global oil research and consulting firm. "It doesn't matter how many large discoveries you have if you can't produce it. This is very exciting news."

Sutherland said it is fair to compare the breakthrough with the opening up of the North Slope of Alaska in terms of U.S. supply.

Ohio Northern University Professor A. F. Alhajji said the implications of this successful test could also help to open greater offshore supplies at other fields around the globe. He said that could mean even greater addition to worldwide reserves than those that now seem to be within reach in the Gulf."

On the other hand, perhaps you would care to make the argument that there is some source of "scientific consensus" on the significance of the find, and of the "peak oil" concept.

We will leave the other fallacies of in your post to be discussed later.

Bubba

And here's yet ANOTHER example of utilization of domestic oil supply.

Excerpt:

""We've got more oil in this very compact area than the entire Middle East," said James Bartis, RAND senior policy researcher and the report's lead author."

As indicated in the article, and in my first post on this thread, we would need to chuck some of our sacred cow environmental policies to utilize these assets.

Why do we need to do things like this?

Because there is no practical alternative to oil that can reasonably be expected to make an impact on the situation for several decades.

Bubba

Regarding the Peak Oil Fallacy.

Key point:

“We are looking at more than four and a half trillion barrels of potentially recoverable oil. That number translates into 140 years of oil at current rates of consumption, or to put it anther way, the world has only consumed about 18 percent of its conventional oil potential.

That fact alone should discredit the argument that peak oil is imminent and put our minds at ease concerning future petrol supplies."

I love the quote at the bottom of the home page:

"The specialist is one who never makes small mistakes while moving toward the grand fallacy."

-- Marshall McLuhan

Ed Cone

There is a point at which harder-to-produce oil becomes economically viable, and we may be headed for that point.

The era of oil may not be over, but the era of cheap oil may be.

And of course the same economics would make alternative energy sources more palatable, thus perhaps driving the cost of oil down...

This is not simple yes/no stuff. It's multifactorial and dynamic. And the political equations make it even more complicated.

Bubba

"And the political equations make it even more complicated."

Absolutely correct. That's what Friedman was talking about regarding Democrats.

What are the chances of this.....

"The best way for a party that is often viewed as weak on national security to overcome that deficit is to be for energy independence, he noted. Indeed, nothing would be more potent for Democrats now than to capture energy security and all the issues that surround it — from improving our trade deficit by not importing more oil to improving the climate to improving U.S. competitiveness by making us leaders in alternative fuels."

...actually happening in the Democrat Party, as it is now controlled?

If you answered "slim to none", you understand the problem.

Ed Cone

I actually meant the geopolitical issues, but domestic politics matter, too. Sadly, the GOP seems no more likely, or perhaps less so, to get serious about it. That's why Friedman today urges RINO Arnie to take the lead.

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