October 31, 2013

Huge oil discovery in Australia — more than in all of Iran, Iraq, Canada, or Venezuela...

... and about equal to Saudi Arabia.

ADDED: Link deleted based on comments about a sales pitch from the link.

43 comments:

rhhardin said...

It's oil from kangaroo fossils.

St. George said...

June 14, 2006. Larry King Live with Al Gore

KING: Gas prices -- we've only got a minute left.
GORE: Yes.
KING: Gas prices going to go down?
GORE: Well, I've seen a number of -- over the last several decades I've seen this happen several times, where they spike and then they do come back down.
But each time they go to a higher plateau. We almost certainly are at or near what they call peak oil, defined as having recovered a majority of the oil reserves at a certain price, affordability range. And so with the new pressure on the consumption side from China and India, if they come back down, they won't stay down long.

rehajm said...

Demand creates it's own supply.

Ann Althouse said...

"almost certainly"

What a great weasel phrase.

Kevin said...

Quick, get Greenpeace or Sierra Club or somebody in there and shut it down. Lawyer up! Go!

EDH said...

Any coincidence with the most recent Australian elections?

Conservatives sweep to Australia election victory

Australia's conservative opposition swept to power Saturday, ending six years of Labor Party rule and winning over a disenchanted public by promising to end a hated tax on carbon emissions, boost a flagging economy and bring about political stability after years of Labor infighting.

Ironically, will new oil wealth increase the perception among Australian voters that can "afford" to pay for a more liberal government?

Marshal said...

The article's title says this is the death blow to the Saudis. Untrue. It's overwhelmingly likely the Saudis will remain the low cost extractor and therefore remain viable. This discovery endangers the highest cost exctractors, such as shale.

Mideast/N.Africa 6 - 28
Other conventional 6 - 39
CO2 enhanced 30 - 80
Deep/ultra-deep-water32 - 65
Enhanced recovery 32 - 82
Arctic oilfields 32 - 100
Heavy oil/bitumen 32 - 68
Oil shales 52 - 113
Gas to liquids 38 - 113
Coal to liquids 60 - 113

Source: International Energy Agency World Energy Outlook 2008

hawkeyedjb said...

Oil wealth is evil wealth. Better to be poor.

Let them eat carbon credits.

richard mcenroe said...

Texas oilmen have begun hanging corks from the brims of their Stetsons....just saying...

Mark said...

Doesn't shale gas require quite large amounts of injected water to get out? That might be a problem in South Australia, or at least add quite a bit to the extraction costs.

Might be more paper riches than achievable dollars.

traditionalguy said...

The "Peak Oil' story about the end of the world story is losing its oomph. It started with Jimmy Carter and had a 30 year run. Now man made weather disasters is the only other Big Lie going.

I told them 7 years ago to stick to an "asteroid that almost targets the earth" story.

Bob R said...

I can remember reading articles in the 1970's about how we were "at or near peak oil." You knew it had to be true, because they had a graph showing how oil production was going to decline...by 1990. They still use the same graph, they just change the numbers on the axes.

William said...

I'm suspicious about the story. It looks like a plant to flog a stock.

Original Mike said...

Fortunately for the Aussies, they don't need our permission to build a pipeline to get their oil to market.

Cedarford said...

News of this huge, deep shale formation believed to be 23 times larger than the US East Coast Marcellus Formation has been around since January 2013.

As Mark says, exploiting the field involves some significant engineering and resource challenges. Water for fracking. Coober Pedy is the dryest part of the dryest Continent. The industry has experimented with using brine deposits and waste water and salt water for fracking fluid, but much prefers fresh - high pressure, high temps turn brine and salt water into even more nasty, pump and pipe destroying corrosive risk than just regular old brine or seawater by exponential rates.

You also have long distances to pipe what is recovered, demanding expensive infrastructure...
And the need to have more water and people and facilities to process the recovered oil and gas of distillate, sand&solids, sulphur and contaminents, and whatever water soluable contaminants come up.

Like out in the US West, water is spoken for and some new demand arises, there will be enraged sheep & cattle ranchers and national park lovers (around Perth) seeing a threat to "their water". So legal issues will have to be resolved, compensations figured out. Which could hinder fast development.

However, huge coal and other mineral exports have already equipped W Australia with robust port facilities. That last challenge is done, ready, and waiting.



Original Mike said...

Disclose TV
Truth Revealed

Hmm.

Marshal said...

The site is flogging a stock, but the find is real (first reported back in January).

This article confirms it's high-cost shale oil, and that the estimates of recoverable oil are wildly optimistic.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/australiaandthepacific/australia/9822955/Trillions-of-dollars-worth-of-oil-found-in-Australian-outback.html

Illuninati said...

Great news for Australia and for the World. I still subscribe to the theory that someday far into the future we will max out our oil reserves and need to move on to something else - probably nuclear power using breeder reactors to enhance their efficiencies by a factor of 10.

I have read that the US has a similarly large reserve in Nevada but we can't get to it because it is on Federal land. It appears that under Obama the peak oil theory works since production on federal land has plateaued and is apparently on the decline. Also because of the Obama administration it seems that the oil production on the North Slope of Alaska is declining and imperiling the trans-Alaskan pipeline which needs to maintain a high volume of oil to warm the pipe enough to keep it from freezing up.

David said...

Ann Althouse said...
"almost certainly"

What a great weasel phrase.


Would you expect less from one of the outstanding American weasels of all time? He's truly magnificent.

David said...

Mark said...
Doesn't shale gas require quite large amounts of injected water to get out? That might be a problem in South Australia, or at least add quite a bit to the extraction costs.


There's lots of water underground in Australia. That's what they would use, and use of that water will be a great focus of the enviros. Prepare for a deluge of propaganda on how terrible the use of that water will be.

AllenS said...

Checking my National Geographic Atlas of the World, I see that
it's only 225 miles to the ocean from Coober Pedy in a SSW direction. Building a desalinization plant at the ocean and pumping fresh water to Coober Pedy and pumping oil back in a different pipeline would be easy infrastructure work.

The cost of the start-up would be easily paid for with the profits that this adventure would bring. Don't let anybody tell you different.

Robert Cook said...

Oops! Look for our august leaders to soon start promulgating reasons why Australia presents an existential threat to America such that we have no choice but to preemptively defend ourselves against their irrational savagery by commencing full-scale military operations against them (what used to be called "war").

PB Reader said...

How much you want to bet Al Gore's already got a piece of the action?

Peter said...



"The find may land at 300 or 400 billion barrels, making it one of the greatest unconventional oil discoveries ...

Are you sure this isn't a tout for some worthless penny stock? It sure reads like one.

Larry J said...

luninati said...
Great news for Australia and for the World. I still subscribe to the theory that someday far into the future we will max out our oil reserves and need to move on to something else - probably nuclear power using breeder reactors to enhance their efficiencies by a factor of 10.


As the easily extracted oil gets used up, the price of oil will increase. That will make harder to access methods such as shale oil economically viable. As some point, other means of energy production will become economically viable and start displacing oil as an energy source. It could be natural gas (relatively easy to convert cars to run on it) or something else. Very little oil is used in the US to produce electricity, which is what you get from nuclear power plants. You could use electricity to power water electrolysis to produce hydrogen but it's much cheaper to get hydrogen from natural gas.

I have read that the US has a similarly large reserve in Nevada but we can't get to it because it is on Federal land. It appears that under Obama the peak oil theory works since production on federal land has plateaued and is apparently on the decline. Also because of the Obama administration it seems that the oil production on the North Slope of Alaska is declining and imperiling the trans-Alaskan pipeline which needs to maintain a high volume of oil to warm the pipe enough to keep it from freezing up.

From what I've read, production on federal lands has declined under Obama because they've stopped the drilling. In this case, the peak is artificial. Open up more federal land for oil production and you'd get more.

At some point, someone should go after the environmentalists on RICO statues. They are a racket.

Scott M said...

LOL...didn't they already have the Greens basically bounced out the door?

Second question: Peak what, now?

hawkeyedjb said...

"Peak what, now?"

I dunno. I thought we had achieved Peak Bullshit, but alas, we're nowhere near the max.

Scott M said...

From what I've read, production on federal lands has declined under Obama because they've stopped the drilling. In this case, the peak is artificial. Open up more federal land for oil production and you'd get more.

In the first couple of years, when gas prices hovering at or over $3 were still shocking (they still suck canal water, they're just not shocking anymore), POTUS mentioned over and over again that the percentage of drilling on available land was at a record high under his administration.

This is bullshit.

The truth is that the administration red-lined a shit-ton of federal land as "unavailable". Even if you kept drilling and production static, while increasing the ratio of "unavailable" land, you automatically drive up your percentage of "usable" land being put into production.

If I have ten apples, and take eight away, telling you I'm saving them for pie later, then I give you an apple, I can honestly say that I've given you 50% of the available apples. What you really got was a tenth.

It's a shell game, but as we've seen recently, lying doesn't bother them.

MartyH said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Cedarford said...

Marshal said...
"The article's title says this is the death blow to the Saudis. Untrue. It's overwhelmingly likely the Saudis will remain the low cost extractor and therefore remain viable."

================
Marshal - While true that Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States will pump the cheapest....it still is a big blow to Arab Oil.

1. For decades, Arab oil access was subsidized by 100s of billions in blown US defense dollars to "stabilize the region, keep access open". We pay a lot more than just for oil to get the oil and have assurance the ME won't get shut off again.


2. For decades, we have paid an additional premium to a nasty bunch of speculators in oil futures who push "instable Muslim risk premiums" and jack us up on each gallon anytime some piddling Islamist Terrahist Evildoer blows up 50 people over there or threaten "Our Special Friend". Many of the oil speculators also happen to be in a direct position to foment unrest and "perceived risk increases". Not just wealthy Muslim speculators, but wealthy that can manipulate the media to create "new ME crisis"..More sources outside the ME, the less important "low cost pumping" is and less acceptable speculation premiums are. And the less important the Gulf is.

3. The free trade idiots are losing the battle that jobs and prosperity arise from free trade. We piss away our wealth in dollars to the Arabs just as sure as we do for cheap China stuff...with no benefit to the economy net....just cheapers stuff for those that still have jobs or are on welfare. America is wealthier and will have more jobs if we make 50 dollar oil at the pumphead here rather than piss away dollars on defense, to line the pockets of speculators, to put up with all the other Muslim bullshit...just to get 26 at the pumphead Saudi oil.

4. As "low cost producer" we have given too much power to the Saudis and OPEC to set prices. And stood back on pushing the Saudis adnd others to end very odious programs to push harmful ideas globally. (Though the Saudis have been far more economically responsible and opebn to US wishes than Israeli and other Saudi-bashing propagandists admit) Except in that unfortunate area where the Saudis will brook no interference in their commitment to use oil money to spread radical, intolerant Salafist/Wahabbist Islam globally.
More oil elsewhere, less ability of OPEC to steer events...and less need to tolerate Saudi Madrassahs in Pakistan, France, Minnesota, and Virginia.

AustinRoth said...

No Liberal doomsday meme ever really dies, be the population bomb, peak oil, catastrophic man-made climate change (which can conveniently be switched between freezing (the 70's - 80's) to Global Warming (the 00's to 10's) at will), income disparity, the homeless (who do however tend to magically disappear from our consciousness when the Democrats are in charge), and a ton more.

Rich Rostrom said...

"Unconventional oil". Which means expensive. It's unlikely that this find can produce oil for $50/barrel.

The Saudis have a lot of cheap oil (under $10/barrel). They won't be holding bake sales any time soon.

They don't have enough production to swamp the market and force higher-cost producers out of business, as in the past, but they're going to do just fine.

BDNYC said...

Someone's gonna get swindled.

ganderson said...

I'm not an oilman, nor an economist but instinctively I feel that a civilized country discovering oil makes it less likely that we have to buy it from the savages.

Jack Wayne said...

Big whoop. 90% of the Earth is unexplored for minerals. Peak Oil is another lefty lie.

Saint Croix said...

It's a legit story, although that article is definitely hyping it. Here is the Daily Telegraph.

A lot of the oil is in shale and they might not be able to get to 97% of it. But what's amazing is that one company owns the entire field.

Worst case: 3.9 billion barrels of oil

Company's market cap is about $730 million. They already went through the excitement phase, and then the stock cratered, and it's been dead money for a while. Really interesting long term speculation, though.

Saint Croix said...

I wish one of you damn libertarians had told me to buy bitcoins, by the way. Grrrrrrrrr.

Cedarford said...

Jack Wayne said...
Big whoop. 90% of the Earth is unexplored for minerals. Peak Oil is another lefty lie.

==============
And the Righty counter-lie is the unlimited Earth of unlimited resources of all commodities we need.

Which like most lies (see Obamacare) is flanked with unbased assumptions and even more lies to buttress it up.

*High technology, driven by the supply-demand market force, will always find more. So exploding populations and dwindling water, arable land, potash, and reserves of minerals like copper and silver are no real concern. Man always solves it!
*Saying 90% of the world has not been explored for oil thus 90% of the oil must be undiscovered assumes you are just as likely to find huge oil deposits in the miles deep mud deposits lying on a thin crustal bed of basalt covering 75% of the Earth as you are in Jurassic Era shallow seabed deposits.

Clyde said...

Crikey!

Somewhere, Al Gore has a pained look on his face like a man with a koala-sized hemorrhoid. And it couldn't happen to a more deserving person. Well, maybe the First Duffer. Fortunately for him, he won't have to try to veto the Coober Pedy XL Pipeline.

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

AustinRoth,

No Liberal doomsday meme ever really dies, be [it] the population bomb [...]

Yep, that one never does die. You might see demographic collapse happening right before your eyes, in Japan and in Europe, especially southern Europe, but there are still too many of those damn breeders and their kids for some people's taste. Questions about who is going to pay for the retirements of the now-working population are shrugged off.

David said...

Rich Rostrom said...
"Unconventional oil". Which means expensive. . . . .

The Saudis have a lot of cheap oil (under $10/barrel). They won't be holding bake sales any time soon.


Maybe. There are some smart and knowledgable people who believe that the Saudi's cache of easily accessible and low cost oil is greatly diminished, and that the Saudis are hiding that fact. However, if that is true it's not good news. A destabilized Saudi Arabia is not good for the world overall, and particularly for the United States.

Carnifex said...

He is NOT a weasel. He is
MANBEARPIG!!! And don't you ever forget it!

I foresee the HNIC, feeling threatened be the Conservative surge in OZ, banning all imports from them.

Rusty said...

Guess who Chinas new best friend is.