[Fwd: RE: What am I missing?]

From: Walter Hicks (wallyshoes@mindspring.com)
Date: Tue Aug 27 2002 - 07:44:25 EDT

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    I failed to include ASA on my email and Glenn's analysis dead ended with
    me. I thought that others on asa might be interested.

    Please note the heel clicking exercise at the end. If we all do this, I
    understand that oil crisis will go away ;)


    -------- Original Message --------
    Subject: RE: What am I missing?
        Date: Mon, 26 Aug 2002 20:43:14 -0700
        From: "Glenn Morton" <glenn.morton@btinternet.com>
          To: "Walter Hicks" <wallyshoes@mindspring.com>

      Hi Walter,You wrote on Monday, August 26, 2002 9:29 AM:
    >Not to be pigheaded, Glenn, but the numbers do not look like a disaster
    to me. In 2001, for example, the world consumed about>27.5*10^9 barrels
    of oil. Despite this, the reserves went up by 3.8*10^9 barrelslls thus
    indicatding that more new oil was discovered>than was used. The year
    2000 looks similar Are you saying that all this new oil is yucky oil
    that is not as good as the "good old" oil of>yesteryear These are good
    questions. But there are explanations. We didn't find 31 billion
    barrels in 2001 (27 billion produced reserves up 4billion). I know the
    BP statistics look that way. The reserves which were brought on line in
    2001 were discovered long ago. Some as long as 30 years ago. They were
    not reserves until someone decided to spend the money to actually
    produce oil. Thus, when discoveries are plotted according to the year
    of discovery, we have not found more oil than we produced in over 22
    years! Once a field is discovered, you can't 'undiscover' it. We are
    living off of past discoveries. At that point it becomes a question of
    economics whether the discovered oil will become reserves.And once
    again, you must remember that reserves are not as important as rate of
    production. What difference does it make if you have 50 gazillion
    barrels of oil in the ground if you can only get it out at the rate of 1
    barrel per day? Think along those terms and you will have a better
    understanding of the problem. And there is a 'yucky' factor to many of
    the fields which have waited 30 years to be put on stream. There is
    always a reason it takes so long to put things online. In 1988 the UK
    was producing about 3 million barrels per day from 200 fields. Today it
    is producing about 2.2 million from 900 fields. We will never produce
    2.2 million from 2000 fields. The average reserve size per field has
    gone down over the years and at some point it costs more energy to
    produce a field than it makes. Small fields are economically yucky. But
    often there is an oil quality problem. Consider a fields from Qatar. The
    terms STOIIP= Stock Tank Oil Initially In Place (we usually only get
    from 10-50% of STOIIP as production before we have to abandon the
    field), API is the 'gravity' of the oil, 40 is good 8 is tar. It is
    loosely correlated to viscosity. B brl = billion barrels, Bcf = billion
    cubic feet Sulphur is really bad as it corrodes everything and is very
    costly to remove. High sulfur fields are the last thing people want.

    discovered 1976 first production 1995
    10,000 b/d heavy sour crude 24 API 3.4% sulphur, viscosity >8 cp
    STOIIP 1.3 B brl 60 Bcf
    1997 production 32,000 b/d
    Jan 1999 50,000 b/d average water cut 50%
    A. Al-Siddiqi and R. A. Dawe, "Qatar's Oil and Gasfields: A Review"
    Journal of Petroleum Geology 22:1999):4:417-436, p. 432-

    The best Middle Eastern crude is 41 API and has sulfur less than 1.1%
    with a viscosity of .25 centipoise. 8 centipoise is about that of thick
    honey. This oil will be hard to produce.

    This report on Venezuela notes that they are harvesting the dregs:

    "Venezuela (undiscovered reserves: 6.0 billion bbl). Limited in
    reserves, Venezuela has hitherto produced some 58% of its estimated
    crude oil reserves (Fig. 4)-the only OPEC 6 member over the halfway
    mark. State oil company Petroleos de Venezuela SA has already achieved
    quite a feat by doubling its capacity to 3 million b/d from 1.5 million
    b/d in the 1990s (assisted by its "apertura" [opening] model). Its
    present plan to double it again to 6 million b/d by 20096 at a cost of
    $25-30 billion seems to be far too ambitious. PDVSA's tackling of the
    Orinoco oil belt's extra-heavy oil deposits in the mid-1990s is a
    harbinger of things to come; tapping of the dregs isn't a good sign.
    Neither will it prove a panacea, for the four major projects being
    implemented have a design capacity of only 450,000 b/d of synthetic
    crude for a total capital outlay of at least $15 billion." AM Samsam
    Bakhtiari, "OPEC'S EVOLVING ROLE: OPEC capacity potential needed to meet
    projected demand not likely to materialize " Oil&Gas Journal July 9,

    By the way, the Orinoco tar belt was discovered sometime in the 19th
    century and is only now being developed. There was a reason for that
    delay. But this belt probably has more oil than any other place on
    earth--problem is, it is all tar and we will only recover only a tiny,
    tiny fraction of it.

    Remember Walter, rate of production is what is important, not reserves.
    Rate, not reserves. Say that three times then click your heels together.


    see http://www.glenn.morton.btinternet.co.uk/dmd.htm
    for lots of creation/evolution information
    personal stories of struggle

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