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The "easy oil" is vanishing

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Old 05-08-2010, 10:06 AM
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The "easy oil" is vanishing

With the exception of Iraq's, most of the "easy oil" in large reservoirs close to the surface is gone. Mexico's biggest field, Cantarell, is in steep decline. Indonesia has become a net oil importer, withdrawing from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries as output from its largest fields has slipped and new discoveries have lagged. Production in the North Sea is plummeting, and Russian output is hitting a plateau.

Stephen Mufson - WASHINGTONPOST - July 29, 2008

Will it take another recession or two for some of us to realize oil is finite? --Ed.

...Today, on an arid square of land the size of Manhattan, thousands upon thousands of black derricks crowd the landscape, bobbing gently up and down and sipping crude oil from the field discovered a century ago. The wells aren't gushers these days, but they still squeeze out a few barrels a day here, a few more there.

Chevron has injected steam into the reservoirs, coaxing the sedimentary rock into giving up millions of barrels of heavy oil that was too thick and sticky to retrieve using the technology of decades past.

But the Kern River field, like most U.S. oil fields, is in decline. After surging to new highs during the 1980s, Kern River production has dropped to just over 80,000 barrels a day, more than 40 percent below its peak. Enhanced recovery techniques will continue to prolong its profitable life, but its days are numbered.... [Read More]
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Old 05-17-2010, 03:13 AM
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Re: The "easy oil" is vanishing

Hi Chuck:

It used to be as easy as “shootin at some food, and up through the ground came a bubblin' crude…” Now we have to begin drilling a mile below the Ocean’s surface and breakthrough 5 to 7-miles of rock beneath that to get at the stuff. I wonder what's next, 2 to 3-miles below the surface and 10 miles beneath the sea floor? At some point, the energy required to get at it is overwhelmed by the P&L statements… Let alone there is not that much more of the sweet stuff left?

Wayne
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