Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Another 2 Trillion Barrels of Oil On the Way

Khaled Al Buraik, executive director of the government-controlled Saudi Aramco, announced that new technology could add as much as 2 trillion barrels of oil to global proved reserves.
Although the current global oil reserves in place are estimated at 14 trillion barrels, only about 1.2 trillion can be recovered, said Khaled Al Buraik, executive director of the government-controlled Saudi Aramco.

Speaking at a seminar in Riyadh, Buraik said the quantity of oil extracted so far worldwide does not exceed one trillion barrels.

"Advanced technology in hydrocarbon production could add around two trillion barrels to the existing proven crude reserves in the near future," he said in his address, published by Saudi newspapers on Monday.

"The real challenge for scientists and engineers is how to access to nearly 11.8 trillion barrels to meet the growing world needs of hydrocarbon in the future...what is needed now is more effort by scientists and specialists in this field to invent new methods and very advanced technology." _Zawya

Higher oil prices are spurring oil companies to increase their spending for exploration and production.

Brazil's rich offshore reserves keep growing larger

Brazil announces ambitious new underwater technologies to provide easier access to its vast undersea oil wealth

Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) is a growing component of national energy budgets from Britain to Japan, as a compensatory move against higher oil prices.

A new and ambitious approach to increasing the value of cheap, abundant natural gas, is being advanced by San Francisco startup Siluria Technologies.
Siluria has decided not to go after gasoline or diesel but instead to produce ethylene, a building block for plastics, fertilizers, pesticides, beverage bottles, tires and lots of other materials that are now made from oil. Ethylene can also be turned into alkanes, a class of hydrocarbons that are a component of gasoline.

A more important difference, though, could be the energy needed for conversion from the natural hydrocarbon molecule, methane, to the synthetic one, ethylene. In Siluria’s process, using a new kind of catalyst, that conversion gives off heat instead of requiring it. _NYT
I will present more information on Siluria in the future.

As you can see, new technologies will bring about both new proved oil reserves and production, AND new substitutes for crude oil in both fuels and chemical uses.

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