RE: Kuwait's biggest field starts to run out of oil

From: Tjalle T Vandergraaf <>
Date: Tue Nov 15 2005 - 12:49:31 EST

Thanks to Glenn for this, although not unexpected, news item. Deffeyes has
been beating this drum for some time already and we have, collectively,
ignored these warnings. On our way back from the 2005 ASA conference, my
wife and I drove around Minneapolis, past constructions of impressive
overpasses and exchanges. I commented that it would be ironic if, by the
time these structures are finished, the price of gasoline has risen to the
point that all these freeways and overpasses are no longer relevant or can
be maintained.


There is also a message to us, Christians. How much longer will we be able
to heat large church buildings and will it environmentally responsible to do
so? Will we revert back to the days when people would bring a small wooden
footstool to church with glowing coals or will we have to start thinking of
going back to home churches?


As far as improvements in technology are concerned, we can replace our
incandescent Christmas lights with LEDs (I did so and last week strung up
140 little LED lights that draw a whopping 8 watts) and CRTs with flat panel
displays but those improvements are a drop in the bucket compared to the
energy required to heat large structures. Making our building more energy
efficient will become more and more expensive if the cost of energy keeps
increasing. Time is not on our side.


Chuck Vandergraaf







From: [] On
Behalf Of Glenn Morton
Sent: Tuesday, November 15, 2005 5:23 AM
Subject: Kuwait's biggest field starts to run out of oil


I fear that Kenneth Deffeyes, author of Hubbert's Peak, may be right. Last
Fall, I met him at the Society of Petroleum Engineers conference. I told
him I had seen him quoted as believing that peak oil would occur
Thanksgiving 2005. I then told him that I didn't beleieve anyone could pick
it that closely. He laughed, said it would be Thanksgiving this year plus
or minus 3 weeks. I think I reported this last year. But then he grew
serious and said he didn't think it would be much past the middle of 2006
when Peak oil occurs. Given the news I was sent today, I fear that
Thanksgiving may indeed be peak oil. Of the four largest fields in the
world, all of them are now in decline. They produce 10% of the world's oil.
I don't see how they can be replaced given the industries inability to find
oil in sufficient quanitities.


If this is the time of peak oil, heaven he lp us all. The freind that sent
this link to me said, "You are entering the depletion zone, please to not
adjust your television set."


Burgan is the 2nd largest by reserves, 3rd largest by daily
production--Cantarell is the 2nd largest by daily production and it has been
announced that it will begin its decline next year (although it is already
off peak slightly).





It was an incredible revelation last we ek that the second largest oil field
in the world is exhausted and past its peak output. Yet that is what the
Kuwait Oil Company revealed about its Burgan field.


Kuwait: Saturday, November 12 - 2005 at 08:46

The peak output of the Burgan oil field will now be around 1.7 million
barrels per day, and not the two million barrels per day forecast for the
rest of the field's 30 to 40 years of life, Chairman Farouk Al Zanki told

He said that engineers had tried to maintain 1.9 million barrels per day but
that 1.7 million is the optimum rate. Kuwait will now spend some $3 million
a year for the next year to boost output and exports from other fields.

However, it is surely a landmark moment when the world's second largest oil
field begins to run dry. For Burgan has been pumping oil for almost 60 years
and ac counts for more than half of Kuwait's proven oil reserves. This is
also not what forecasters are currently assuming.

Forecasts wrong
Last week the International Energy Agency's report said output from the
Greater Burgan area will be 1.64 million barrels a day in 2020 and 1.53
million barrels per day in 2030. Is this now a realistic scenario?

The news about the Burgan oil field also lends credence to the controversial
opinions of investment banker and geologist Matthew Simmons. His book
'Twilight in the Desert: The Coming Saudi Oil Shock and the World Economy'
claims that the ageing Saudi oil filed also face serious production falls.

The implications for the global economy are indeed serious. If the world oil
supply begins to run dry then the upward pressure on oil prices will be
inexorable. For the oil producers this will come as a compensation for
declining output, and cushion them against an economic collapse.

However, th e oil consumers then face a major energy crisis. Industrialized
economies are still far too dependent on oil. And the pricing mechanism of
declining oil reserves will press them into further diversification of
energy supplies, particularly nuclear, wind and solar power.

Geological facts
All this was foreshadowed in the energy crisis of the late 1970s when a
serious inflection in oil supply by the year 2000 was clearly forecast. How
ironic that those earlier forecasts now look correct, while more modern and
recent forecasts begin to look over optimistic and out-of-date with
geological reality.

Nobody can change the geology, and forces of nature that laid down reserves
of oil and gas over millions and millions of years. Could it be that we have
been blinded by technological advances into thinking that there is some way
to beat nature?

The natural world has an uncanny ability to hit back at the arrogance of
man, and perhaps a reasse ssment of reality at this point is called for,
rather than a reliance on oil statistics that may owe more to political
maneuvering than geological facts.




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Received on Tue Nov 15 12:51:24 2005

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