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Klondike 2: The Great Arctic Oil Rush
by Xavier ConnollyIt's the melting of the Arctic ice, as the climate warms, that makes it possible and you can understand why exploration companies are joining the headlong rush to drill for hydrocarbons that have been locked under the ice above the Arctic Circle. In July 2008, the US Geological Survey released the first ever publicly available estimate of the oil locked in the earth north of the Arctic Circle.
The figure suggested by calculations was 90 billion barrels, representing an estimated 13 per cent of the world's undiscovered oil resources. If you're an oil company, or an oil-hungry nation that wants to keep it's economy growing that's more than enough to make the high risk investment seem worthwhile.
Less than a year after that estimate was published, the geologists involved in the survey, known as Cara, the Circum-Arctic Resource Appraisal, had revised their estimate upwards, almost doubling the figure. In June 2009 they said the Arctic might in fact hold as much as 160 billion barrels, which would amount to more than 35 years of US oil imports, or five years of total global oil consumption, and be worth, at current prices, more than 18 trillion dollars. Forget mouthwatering. Think creaming their pants.
In the historic opening-up to exploitation of the frozen north, hydrocarbons are the greatest prize (there is likely to be even more natural gas than there is oil.)
Forget that the polar regions are the most inhospitable parts of the whole globe. And no matter, either, that the Arctic constitutes the world's most untouched ecosystem. And if you hear the tree hugging, sandal wearing weirdie - beardies wailing and gnashing their teeth and making doom and gloom prophecies about the end of the world, cover your ears and go LA LA LA LA LA. The oil industry's motto has always been "Can Do", and in the Arctic, it's already doing.
This will lead to almost unbearable volumes of whining from the climate science lobby, now utterly discredited but still noisy. They want to shut down the global economy so we can go back to a medieval system of using windmills for power. Well just as medieval millers could not grind corn when there was no wing, so modern "sustainable energy" generators cannot sustain energy supplies. (The truth about wind turbines). And they fare no better when the weather is too windy or when there is wind but it is not blowing strongly enough.
Do not be taken in by the Warmageddonists, fear-and-panic mongers and pseudo - liberal crypto - stalinists. With demand for energy in the form of electricity and automotive power increasing everywhere on the planet we will run out of oil and natural gas long before burning those things could destroy the planet even if we work with the weirdie - beardies most doom laden predictions. Some have called them Cassandras, referring to the Trojan soothsayer who always predicted death and destruction and thus was ignored. As events played out Cassandra was always right. The Warmageddonists preen as they mention this point. They are wrong though, their prophecies are not like those of Cassandra but more akin to the crackpot cult leaders who lead their congregation to a mountain peak to await the end of the world the date of which was revealed to them by God. A few days later they lead the cult down again, muttering something about instructions in The Bible being a tad vague.
So it it with those who base their predictions on mathematical modelling rather than real life observations.
and nuclear fission are the only means we have of generating the power we need. And we need a lot, it is sobering to look at how dependent modern, industrialised societies are on energy from oil and gas (Iceberg Alley Blues)
Cairn Energy, a Scottish oil exploration company was the first to find oil in the arctic in August 2010: it is now in the process of drilling four test wells in Baffin Bay, off the west coast of Greenland (it began last year with three wells, none of which struck oil).
In 2011 Cairn was followed into the high north by Shell: the Anglo-Dutch giant has spent more than $2bn (£1.24bn) on seabed leases and embarked on a massive programme of oil exploration. By July 2012, plans to have up to ten wells in the Beaufort and Chukchi seas off the north coast of Alaska, a region that, according to US Geological Survey estimates, holds 25bn barrels of oil. Hot on the heels of Shell were the biggest of all the oil "supermajors", and the world's largest company – ExxonMobil.
To facilitate its Arctic adventure Exxon formed an Arctic exploration partnership worth $3.2bn with Rosneft, the Russian state oil group, to look for oil on the other side of the Arctic, in the Kara Sea off the coast of Siberia. In doing so, Exxon took the place of BP, which had done much the same deal with Rosneft in January 2009, only to see it fall apart four months later when it was blocked by BP's existing Russian partners. BP will be back, though; after being destabilised by the massive spill in the Gulf of Mexico the company is "actively looking for opportunities."
This great surge of development is producing a great surge of concern among environmentalists as they consider the consequences of a repeat of BP's catastrophic Deepwater Horizon spill in the Gulf, which would be much in the even more difficult conditions of the Arctic Ocean.
What especially angers green groups is the very fact that the melting of the Arctic ice through global warming is what is paving the way for the region to be exploited which is an emotional reaction rather than a logical one. We are now aware of much evidence, suppressed for years by the highly politicised scientific establishment, that carbon dioxide emmissions from human activity have little effect on the climate and it is very likely the ice would be melting anyway due to the progression of natural cycles.
The U.S. is bombing Iraq isn’t for humanitarian reasons
The involvement of Britain’s Royal Air Force in delivering humanitarian aid in Iraq t has triggered speculations that the UK, may join the US in launching targeted air strikes against the Islamic State. The RAF Tornados deployed Tornado are two seat fighter planes capable of low level s supersonic flight but not idea for delivering large payloads of bagged rice or bottled water. They could be useful for dropping medicines however. Though British military leaders were insistent that the aircraft would only be used in Iraq as part of humanitarian operations, the choice of Tornados ... More
Will new clean energy process make coal the fuel of the future
The news that Spain has dumped it's loonytoons green energy policy will surprise few people who have followed the wind turbine scam. Wind power as a source of energy is unreliable and inefficient and it was only in a fit of green socialist insanity Spain's previous government committed that beleagured nation to meeting the bulk of its energy needs from wind and sun powreed generators. The scientists who advised them forgot it oes dark for approximately half the time and the wind blows when it fels like blowing.
High Court Says Government's Green Energy OCD Does Not Override Natural Beauty
Green Energy Causing Global WarmingFancy A Laugh? Here's a good story. A new scientific study says wind farms can cause climate change. The new research, that shows for the first time the new technology is already pushing up temperatures. Usually at night the air closer to the ground becomes colder when the sun goes down and the earth cools. Simples. But on huge wind farms the motion of the turbines mixes the air higher in the atmosphere ...
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