Oil & Natural Gas: News & Discussion

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Postby upendora » 08 Feb 2008 07:28

Bio-fuel:
If villagers are given a free choice, they will probably use it more efficiently like oil-lamps or for cooking food. Assuming we get right blends to avoid smells. Converting to electricity or using for cars is an urban utopia.

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Postby Jaylal » 08 Feb 2008 10:54

I've been pretty down on the whole mania behind Biofuels for a long time. The Biofuel revolution has a potential to hit the poor even harder than Global Warming alone ever could. Mass deforestation, increased CO2 emissions, and a surge in food prices around the world are just the tip of this disaster waiting to happen. The only real exception I can think of *might* be Jatropha, but even then...

NYT:Studies Deem Biofuels a Greenhouse Threat

[quote]Almost all biofuels used today cause more greenhouse gas emissions than conventional fuels if the full emissions costs of producing these “greenâ€

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Postby VinodTK » 10 Feb 2008 06:05

Turkey offers alternative to Iran pipeline


The Turkish offer is very good for India; hopefully India will act on this offer quickly.
India does not have to depend on the Iran/Pakistan pipeline.

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Postby Nayak » 10 Feb 2008 07:51

Traveling through the Mediterranean Sea in super tankers, the oil will then be fed into Israel's Ashkelon-Eilat pipeline, while super tankers pick it off from the Gulf of Aqaba port of Eilat and back again on super tankers to India.


Seems a bit complicated to me.

But two important considerations have made it imperative for India to seek alternative sources and alternative routes for its oil - first, the persistent instability in the Persian Gulf area means that any conflict say, with Iran, will see a virtual collapse in oil supplies to India. Second, India needs to source as much energy as it possibly can, because power, or lack thereof, could become the greatest hindrance to India's economic story.


It would be preferable to avoid any agreements with Iran. With Ahmednutjob in the driver's seat nothing with iran can be sure. Also TSP needs to be deprived of every honest dollar.

Both Turkey and Israel are positioning themselves as relevant players in the global energy market by becoming secure providers.


Atleast any agreements with Israel and Turkey can be honoured unlike the faithfuls.

Here is some information on wiki

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baku-Tbili ... n_pipeline

Shareholders of the pipeline

The pipeline is owned by a consortium of energy companies led by BP (formerly British Petroleum), the operator of the pipeline. The shareholders of the consortium are:

* BP (United Kingdom): 30.1%
* State Oil Company of Azerbaijan (SOCAR) (Azerbaijan): 25.00%
* Chevron (USA): 8.90%
* StatoilHydro (Norway): 8.71%
* Türkiye Petrolleri Anonim Ortaklığı (TPAO) (Turkey): 6.53%
* Eni/Agip (Italy): 5.00%
* Total (France): 5.0%
* Itochu (Japan): 3.4%
* Inpex (Japan): 2.50%
* ConocoPhillips (USA): 2.50%
* Hess Corporation (USA) 2.36%[11]

When looked from economic/security/political angle, it definitely gives a option for India to reconsider it's plan on IPI.

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Postby Nayak » 10 Feb 2008 07:55

Some more info in Turkish press

Turkey Offers India An Oil Pipeline Project
Published: 2/9/2008







NEW DELHI - Turkish Foreign Minister Ali Babacan said Saturday Turkey offered India a project to pump oil from Turkey's Ceyhan to India via Israel.

Babacan, who is currently in India to hold formal talks, said India needs great amounts of energy supply and looks on Turkey's plan with favor.

Reminding that Indian state oil company will probably involve in Samsun-Ceyhan oil pipeline project, Babacan said there was another project to connect southern port town of Ceyhan to Israel with a subsea pipeline.

"Feasibility work will be carried out about this project. But even if this subsea pipeline project is not implemented, it is possible to carry oil to Israel by means of tankers," Babacan told the A.A.

Babacan said oil can be transported to India from Israel thanks to Israel's existing pipeline stretching from its Mediterranean port to Red Sea, adding that it would be a tempting offer for India as it is an alternative energy resource.

"Within the framework of our offer, Turkish, Indian and Israeli energy ministers may come together," Babacan said.

He also noted that officials of the two countries would discuss how Turkey and India could cooperate in the area of nuclear energy as India has the nuclear technology.


Turkish Press

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Postby Neshant » 10 Feb 2008 12:42

Do they have enough oil to supply India as well as Europe?

This offer sounds like its coming at the behest of US which does not want India to deal with Iran.

If India agrees, it will be putting its energy security in the hands of the US. The pipeline is entirely owned by US and countries allied to the US.

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Postby upendora » 11 Feb 2008 12:57

Turkish offer gives some comfort. Note that Iran also going to decline rates in 10-15 years for liquid oil. Natural gas will be used as a replacement by then. Hope India gets the infrastructure ready to be able to afford the gas.

No worries about US, the empire will be on retreat or atleast crippled due to economic reasons.

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Postby upendora » 13 Feb 2008 13:05

bala wrote:...
The Pipeline is a non-starter unless Pukes put in escrow a large fee for any sabotage or Sindh becomes free :D


We can add a third possibility. India occupying pakistan.

from the link here
[quote]
The U.S.’s military failure in Kunar, augmented by Pakistan’s military and political failures in tribal areas are likely to draw India’s troops into the worsening quagmire. U.S does not have the capacity for ground troop engagement in Pakistan. For this reason, the neocons consider it best to de-legitimize the Pakistani state covertly, to such an extent that the event of inevitable Indian involvement is seen as a “liberationâ€

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Postby vina » 13 Feb 2008 13:31

VinodTK wrote:Turkey offers alternative to Iran pipeline


The Turkish offer is very good for India; hopefully India will act on this offer quickly.
India does not have to depend on the Iran/Pakistan pipeline.


This is the best alternative for India. We cannot put our future at risk by getting strategically "locked" to one particular source and pipeline. Pipelines by their very nature are vulnerable, inflexible and subject to blackmail. Yes, you can guard against it in contracts and build buffer inventory to tide over temporary disruptions. But all the same. not very good and you give tremenodus amount of pricing power to a monopoly supplier and free money to the Pakis in transit.

A large fleet of super tankers /LNG tankers will give us all the flexbility we need. We can send them to the gulf /australia /SE asia /africa , wherever we get get supplies in the best possible terms.. Something we can never do with pipelines.. The pricing leverage comes to us the customer, rather than the supplier like in a pipeline. We might even be able to access stranded reserves in the middle of nowhere (like angola, nigeria say) and can get good terms .. Notice, this does not preclude India from accesssing the Iranian gas at all.. In fact, we can use Iranian gas as well, the only difference is that , it wont come via pipeline. India can offer to invest in a gas liquefaction facility in Iran, instead of laying a pipeline to get the gas. Iran gains as well. It can possibly export the gas to many more customers than just India and Pakistan if there is a liquefaction facility.

And lastly, a fleet of super tankers will allow us the flexibility of landing the gas in either the west coast or east coast ,closer to demand . If we go the pipeline route, we will have to build a network of pipelines within India to deliver the gas.

The only outlets for the caspian sea gas and oil was via Russia. The Baku Ceyhan pipeline broke that monopoly. Iran bottles up Azerbeijan's gas by not allowing it transit to the nearest ocean outlet via iran (blocking a key competitor)

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Postby upendora » 24 Feb 2008 02:33


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Postby Neshant » 24 Feb 2008 06:16

don't know where else to put this so I'll just put it here :


Afghanistan sitting on a gold mine

KABUL (Agencies): Afghanistan is sitting on a wealth of mineral reserves -- perhaps the richest in the region -- that offer hope for a country mired in poverty after decades of war, the mining minister says.

Significant deposits of copper, iron, gold, oil and gas, and coal -- as well as precious gems such as emeralds and rubies -- are largely untapped and still being mapped, Mohammad Ibrahim Adel said. And they promise prosperity for one of the world's poorest countries, the minister said, dismissing concerns that a Taliban-led insurgency may thwart efforts to unearth this treasure. Already in the pipeline is the exploitation of a massive copper deposit -- one of the biggest in the world -- about 30 kilometres (20 miles) east of Kabul.

"There has not been such a big project in the history of Afghanistan," Adel said. A 30-year lease for the Aynak copper mine was in November offered to the China Metallurgical Group Corporation and the contract is being finalised. "It is estimated that the Aynak deposit has more than 11 million tonnes (of copper)," he said, citing 1960s surveys by the Soviet Union and a new study by the United States Geological Survey (USGS). "With today's prices, it contains an 88-billion-dollar deposit," he said. The mine is expected to bring the government 400 million dollars annually in fees and taxes, Adel said.

That is on top of an 800-million-dollar downpayment from the developer who has also committed to build a railway line, a power plant and a village for workers, complete with schools, clinics and roads. About 5,000 jobs will be created and mining is expected to start in five years. "Up to 40 percent of the income will pour into our pockets," Adel said. The colossal Aynak project represents, however, only a fraction of Afghanistan's unexploited resources, he said. The scale of the deposits is still being charted. The USGS is carrying out a nationwide survey of mineral wealth and oil and gas deposits that is expected to be completed in a year, Adel said. Studies of only 10 percent of the country have discovered abundant deposits of copper, iron, zinc, lead, gold, silver, gems, salt, marble and coal, the ministry says.

The USGS estimates there are about 700 billion cubic metres of gas and 300 million tonnes of oil across several northern provinces. A Soviet survey estimated there are more than two billion tonnes of iron reserves, the ministry says. One of the best known iron deposits is at Haji Gak, 90 kilometres west of Kabul. "If everything goes as we desire, Haji Gak requires two to three billion dollars' investment," said the minister. "

Another 100 million to 1.5 billion dollars is needed to explore the gas and oil mines." The government plans to offer more projects for private sector tender next year, Adel said. There is already some mining underway such as ad hoc emerald extraction in the Panjshir valley region northeast of Kabul, where dynamite is used to blow gems out of the ground. And the ministry has handed two coal mines to private Afghan companies, although they lack standard equipment.

The Aynak contract will be a model for others, with developers expected to put in basic infrastructure as Afghanistan's power grid is weak and its transport network limited. There is also the challenge of the insurgency, which overshadows development and has made many areas off-limits to foreign companies. Writer and analyst Waheed Mujda warned there could be no mining in Taliban-held areas, which are mostly in the south, without the permission of the Islamic extremists. "

Any kind of agreement with Taliban will have to involve money and that money obviously would finance the insurgency in part," Mujda said. But Adel is not concerned. "We can provide security for mining sites simply by hiring a private security company," he said. Most of the deposits that have been discovered are in the relatively stable north. There are, however, uranium reserves in the southern province of Helmand, one of the worst for Taliban attacks, the minister said. The minister's sights are firmly set on mining bringing his impoverished country a brighter future. "In five years' time Afghanistan will not need the world's aid money," he said. "In 10 years Afghanistan will be the richest country in the region."

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Postby Tilak » 03 Mar 2008 00:35

VinodTK wrote:Turkey offers alternative to Iran pipeline


The Turkish offer is very good for India; hopefully India will act on this offer quickly.
India does not have to depend on the Iran/Pakistan pipeline.


X-Posted from Geopolitics Thread

Gerard wrote:A long road from Kosovo to Kurdistan
The ongoing saga revolves around two crucial, interrelated facts on the ground: Pipelineistan and the empire of 737 (and counting) US military bases in 130 countries operated by 350,000-plus Americans. In short: it revolves around the trans-Balkan AMBO pipeline and Camp Bondsteel in Kosovo, the the largest US base built in Europe in a generation.



Oil and US Geopolitical Objectives in the Balkans
"This is about America's energy security. It's also about preventing strategic inroads by those who don't share our values. We're trying to move these newly independent countries toward the west. We would like to see them reliant on western commercial and political interests rather than going another way. We've made a substantial political investment in the Caspian, and it's very important to us that both the pipeline map and the politics come out right."
Bill Richardson 1998, US energy secretary, on US policy on the extraction and transport of Caspian oil
'A discreet deal in the pipeline - Nato mocked those who claimed there was a plan for Caspian oil'
Guardian, 15 February 2001

Image

BBC Simplified Map of Yugoslav Oil Pipelines
At The Time Of The NATO Bombing
Click here for location of US Camp Bondsteel, Kosovo
More detailed map (go to bottom of linked page)

ImageImage


"During the 1999 Balkans war, some of the critics of Nato's intervention alleged that the western powers were seeking to secure a passage for oil from the Caspian sea. This claim was widely mocked.... [However] For the past few weeks, a freelance researcher called Keith Fisher has been doggedly documenting a project which has, as far as I can discover, has been little-reported in any British, European or American newspaper. It is called the Trans-Balkan pipeline, and it's due for approval at the end of next month. Its purpose is to secure a passage for oil from the Caspian sea. The line will run from the Black sea port of Burgas to the Adriatic at Vlore, passing through Bulgaria, Macedonia and Albania. It is likely to become the main route to the west for the oil and gas now being extracted in central Asia. It will carry 750,000 barrels a day: a throughput, at current prices, of some $600m a month. The project is necessary, according to a paper published by the US Trade and Development Agency last May, because the oil coming from the Caspian sea 'will quickly surpass the safe capacity of the Bosphorus as a shipping lane'. The scheme, the agency notes, will 'provide a consistent source of crude oil to American refineries', 'provide American companies with a key role in developing the vital east-west corridor', 'advance the privatisation aspirations of the US government in the region' and 'facilitate rapid integration' of the Balkans 'with western Europe'...."
'A discreet deal in the pipeline - Nato mocked those who claimed there was a plan for Caspian oil'
Guardian, 15 February 2001

Image

"Albania, Bulgaria and Macedonia have given the go ahead for the construction of a $1.2bn oil pipeline that will pass through the Balkan peninsula. The project aims to allow alternative ports for the shipping of Russian and Caspian oil, that normally goes through the Bosphorus straits. It aims to transport 750,000 daily barrels of oil. The pipeline will be built by the US-registered Albanian Macedonian Bulgarian Oil Corporation (AMBO). The pipeline will run for nearly 900 kilometres from the Bulgarian port of Burgas, over the Black Sea to the Albanian city of Vlore on the Adriatic coast, crossing Macedonia.... According to AMBO president Edward Ferguson, work on the pipeline will begin in 2005 and it is expected to be ready in three or four years. He added that the company had already raised about $900m from the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) - a US development agency - the Eximbank and Credit Suisse First Boston, among others."
Go-ahead for Balkan oil pipeline
BBC Online, 28 December 2004

"On June 2, the U.S. Trade and Development Agency announced it had awarded the $588,000 grant to Bulgaria to carry out a feasibility study for the pipeline. Under the proposed plan, Caspian oil would be shipped by tanker from the Black Sea ports of Novorossiysk in Russia and from Supsa in former Soviet Georgia and then pumped by overland pipeline across Bulgaria, Macedonia and Albania to waiting European consumers. 'The continuing conflicts in Yugoslavia have made [the proposed trans-Balkan line] appear impractical in past years. But the prospect that the U.S. government would guarantee security in the region ... now makes it a much more attractive proposition. This grant represents a significant step forward for this policy (of multiple pipeline routes) and for U.S. business interests in the Caspian region,' said TDA Director J. Joseph Grandmaison. The decision came shortly before NATO and Russia reached agreement on how to force an end to the Kosovo conflict. The decision has raised speculation among regional experts that it may be part of a larger economic development plan envisioned by the Clinton administration to stabilize the southern Balkans after the massive dislocations and infrastructure damage caused by the Serbian repression in Kosovo and the U.S.-led NATO bombing of Serbia. The new strategic importance of the trans-Balkans region to U.S. policy makers could now justify its designation as a Main Export Pipeline for Caspian oil. The continuing conflicts in Yugoslavia have made it appear impractical in past years. But the prospect that the U.S. government would guarantee security in the region and also provide financial guarantees now makes it a much more attractive proposition... The Bulgaria-Macedonia-Albania route has already won support in Moscow and from the Chevron-led Caspian Pipeline Consortium that is developing the Caspian-Kazakhstan oil deposits. The main export line for Caspian crude will run through Russian territory to the Black Sea deposit at Novorossiysk and then by oil tankers to consumers."
Looking at Balkans route for Caspian crude
United Press International, 23 June 1999

"The `AMBO' Corporation (Pound Ridge, NY) has announced, on 17th January 1997, that Mr. E.L. (Ted) Ferguson - formerly Director of Oil & Gas Development for Europe and Africa for `Brown & Root Energy Services' has joined `AMBO' as President & CEO.... The `AMBO' Corporation (an acronym for the `Albanian- Macedonian-Bulgarian Oil Corporation') is the project developer of the 826 million $ Trans-Balkan Oil Pipeline which will carry crude oil from the Bulgarian Black Sea port of Bourgas to the Albanian Adriatic Sea port of Vlor....The feasibility study for `AMBO's ` Trans-Balkan Oil Pipeline, conducted by the international engineering company of `Brown & Root Ltd.' in London.... The resulting pipeline will become a part of the region's critical East-West corridor infrastructure which includes highway, railway, gas and fiber optic telecommunications lines. This pipeline will bring oil directly to the European market by eliminating tanker traffic through the ecologically sensitive waters of the Aegean and Mediterranean Seas."
M I L S N E W S
Skopje, 23 January, 1997

"Mediterranean refiners are suffering shortages of crude oil as Turkish security restrictions and bad weather cause a traffic jam of tankers carrying Russian oil through the straits of the Bosporus and Dardanelles... The congestion threatens a supply crunch similar to that experienced by European refiners during the Gulf war of 1991.... The jam has forced Russian producers to halt one pipeline sending oil to the Black Sea because storage tanks are full and tanker loadings are delayed. 'The Bosporus problem is hitting very hard,' said one refiner in Spain. The transit route of the Bosporus and Dardanelles straits, one of the most important export points for Russia, Europe's biggest supplier, is known for problems and delays. But the delays this year are compounded by the fact that refiners can no longer rely on the Iraqi substitute for Russian oil. Kirkuk oil, from Iraq's northern oilfields, resembles Russia's Urals oil. But Kirkuk, which is transported by pipeline to the Turkish port of Ceyhan, has not been available since March because of the sabotage of Iraq's section of the pipeline."
Bosporus tanker jam threatens shortage of oil
Financial Times, 11 January 2004

"Five countries are expected to sign in January an agreement to build an oil pipeline from Romania to Italy. The project, which includes rehabilitating Romania's Black Sea port Constanta, would cost at least $2.4bn (€2bn, £1.4bn), a feasibility study has found. People close to the project said two key oil companies, one international energy group and one state-owned energy company, had expressed interest. Henry Owen, a financial adviser to the project, said the pipeline would feed refineries in south-eastern Europe, Italy, Austria and Bavaria and would send oil to tankers via an existing pipeline from Trieste to the deepwater port at Genoa. It would reduce European dependence on Middle Eastern oil, would be outside Russian control and would help to alleviate some of the congestion in the Bosphorus and Dardanelles straits, analysts said. But they warned that the pipeline faced several competitors and that an agreement could still be scuttled by one of the five states. If the signing ceremony proceeds, the next big hurdle will be reaching agreement on the pipeline tariffs. Ian Woollen, senior analyst at Wood Mackenzie, the UK-based consultants, said: 'It is a step forward, but there is still a long way to go. There are a lot of competing options that make more sense logistically and commercially.' Two pipelines that would originate in Burgas, Bulgaria, compete with the so-called Pan-European Pipeline from Constanta to Trieste. One would send oil to Alexandroupolis in Greece, the other to Vlore on Albania's Adriatic coast. Politics plays as much of a role as money. Russia's interest in controlling the region's oil flow, and the US opposing objective in diversifying the power away from Moscow, mix with the broader tug between Asia and Europe, both large markets keen to receive the oil. Meanwhile, Turkey wants to reduce the strain of shipping almost all the region's oil through the dangerously busy Bosphorus and Dardanelles straits, but does not want to lose control of the power and the income that comes with being such an important trading gateway. Altogether a dozen pipelines are proposed for the region. The most significant new pipeline is the BP-led Baku to Ceyhan line, expected to open this spring."
Five countries to build joint oil pipeline

Financial Times, 20 December 2005

Image


PS : The below link has more information on dirty oil politics/terrorism in the Balkans..

Balkans - The Name of the Game is Oil!

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Postby bala » 10 Mar 2008 23:19

The Turkey route seems is another alternate but the shipping of oil to India is a still a huge cost. Considering this, shipping oil from Iran is much more attractive.

There is a promising new line of research creating oil from Algae..

Algae startups chase green slime dreams

There's a certain poetry in the notion of jet planes shooting across the sky, powered by pond scum.

Throw in the prospect that fuels made from algae could slow global warming, replace petroleum and make a fortune for their creators, and the vision becomes irresistible. Dozens of start-ups, in Silicon Valley and around the world, are chasing green-slime dreams.

It's a daunting but important quest. With oil prices topping $100 a barrel and rising concern about manmade climate change, we need to find renewable fuels that reduce our dependence on petroleum and cut our carbon emissions.

"Algae has a chance to save the planet," said Michael Fertik, who is quietly working on a a startup, Mighty Algae Biofuels, in addition to his main job as chief executive of ReputationDefender in Menlo Park. "It's not a category killer. It's category Armageddon."

Well, hopefully not Armageddon. But you get the picture.

Microscopic, single-celled algae have been around for billions of years. The simplest of plants, they are quite efficient at converting light, water and carbon into oily compounds called lipids that can be extracted and processed into diesel fuel, gasoline, crude oil, even salad dressings and skin creams.

"Algae are the original oil producers," said Jonathan Wolfson, chief executive of Solazyme, a South San Francisco company that is trying to grow algae in giant fermentation tanks more typically used for beer. "The last time you filled up your car, the gas came from oil that very likely originated with an algal bloom 100 million years ago."

The challenge for entrepreneurs like Wolfson: How do you convert algae into usable oil on a massive scale at a price comparable to pumping petroleum out of the ground?

It is, as the techies like to say, a non-trivial problem.

First, you have to find the right species of algae. Then you have to figure out the best way to make it grow. Then you have to devise a method for getting the oil out. Then you have to refine it into something that can run your car or an airplane. To top it all off, volume needs to be high enough to drive the cost down to $2 or $3 a gallon from about $20 now.

"People think all we have to do is grow this stuff, extract the oil and here we go," said Al Darzins, a group manager at the National Bioenergy Center, part of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory. NREL spent two decades researching algal oils before federal policy makers decided ethanol had more commercial promise. Just recently, the lab resumed its algae work.

NREL studied algae in open ponds, an industrial farming approach used by some companies, including LiveFuels of Menlo Park. While ponds have the advantage of being relatively cheap, it's hard to control temperature and water loss. Unwanted algae species can also take over the pools.

Another strategy, advocated by companies like Mighty Algae and GreenFuel Technologies of Cambridge, Mass., is to grow algae in special containers, or bioreactors, which can be manipulated to optimize the plants' exposure to sunlight and nutrients.

High capital costs are the biggest problem with bioreactors, said Rich Hilt, a LiveFuels co-founder who left the company but still follows the industry. GreenFuel ran into financing trouble last year, forcing the company to slash its staff and bring on Bob Metcalfe, co-inventor of Ethernet technology, as CEO. (Fertik claims his small team has licked the cost problem through a "galactically cheaper" design.)

Solazyme is pursuing a third path, one I find especially fascinating: growing algae in the dark in large tanks and feeding them sugar to supercharge their growth. "It's a thousand times more productive than the natural process," said Harrison Dillon, a geneticist and patent lawyer who serves as the company's president and chief technology officer.

Solazyme says it has already made thousands of gallons of high-grade biodiesel and even light sweet "biocrude" with its processes, which can use anything from chemical waste to wood chips as a source of carbon.

The company, which raised $10 million in equity financing and $5 million in debt last year, is still experimenting with different feedstocks, algae species and oil extraction methods. Scores of containers with telltale green scrawls dot the lab and computers are constantly measuring conditions in the fermentation tanks.

Dillon said he hopes to reach commercial-scale biodiesel production in two or three years. Refiner Imperium Renewables of Seattle and petroleum giant Chevron of San Ramon have already signed partnership agreements with the company.

To help pay the bills, Solazyme is using its technology to make specialty oils for the cosmetics industry, including one ingredient that could fetch more than $20,000 a liter.

Darzins and other experts caution that economical algal oil production is at least five years away and could take up to a decade. Rival biofuel technologies, such as the bacterial oil generation being explored by Bay Area startups LS9 and Amyris Biotechnologies, could prove to be more successful.

Still, the algae efforts are well worth pursuing. Recent research suggests that existing biofuels like ethanol and diesels made from soybeans and oil palms cause more environmental harm than they're worth.

Scientists estimate that a commercial algae farm could probably produce 5,000 gallons of oil per acre of land, compared to around 50 gallons an acre from soybeans and 600 gallons an acre from palm oil. Depending on the species and the manufacturing process, the algae could also be grown in the desert or other inhospitable places so they wouldn't tie up valuable land that could be used for food crops.

The potential of algae has certainly seduced investors, from the prominent Silicon Valley venture capitalists to the poor suckers conned into giving money to De Beers Fuels, a South African company that collapsed last year in a web of deception.

"There's a lot of overpromising, and there's going to be a heck of a lot of people underdelivering," said Wolfson.

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Postby upendora » 24 Mar 2008 12:27

Double-digit oil price is history: R S Sharma of ONGC


..
Oil addicted economies, the world over, will have to reconcile to this fact and work out suitable solutions to insulate development from the oil price curve
...



I wasted my 10 minutes reading that article. What are the "suitable solutions" he is expecting. Touches vaguely about peak-oil. As head of large organisation, I expect more coherent talk.

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Postby Vipul » 25 Mar 2008 02:23

Reliance mulls third refinery at Jamnagar.

Mukesh Ambani-promoted Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) is evaluating a plan to set up its third refinery at Jamnagar in an ambitious project to reach a total capacity of 100 million metric tonne per annum (mmtpa), the largest at a single location in the world.

The company has appointed a global oil and refinery consultancy firm to evaluate the feasibility of the project, which will help capitalise the increased requirement for global crude distillation capacity.

RIL has a 33 mmtpa refinery at Jamnagar, which is the third largest at a single location in the world. The refinery’s capacity is 22.6 per cent of India’s total refining capacity.

The company is also setting up a second refinery near the existing one with a capacity of 29 mmtpa.

This export-based refinery is being set up under its subsidiary Reliance Petroleum Ltd (RPL) and is scheduled to be operational by the end of this year.

RIL will require a capacity addition of 38 mmtpa through its third refinery at Jamnagar to reach the 100 mmtpa capacity.

A senior executive of the consultancy firm that is evaluating the project feasibility confirmed that the company has such a plan but did not want to divulge details. An RIL spokesperson said no such plan was under consideration.

The evaluation for such a project is believed to be at a nascent stage and no concrete decision has been taken yet.

“It is still not clear; the third refinery would come under RIL, RPL or a separate subsidiary will be created,â€

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Postby shyamd » 25 Mar 2008 06:44


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Postby upendora » 04 Apr 2008 10:18

I heard the western media even gave investment advise to short oil.
So where is the 90$ oil? Positive thinking doesn't work for the rules of supply and demand.


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Postby satya » 04 Apr 2008 16:27

I heard the western media even gave investment advise to short oil.
So where is the 90$ oil? Positive thinking doesn't work for the rules of supply and demand.


Watch out for USD value in currency market . It will play a major factor. Supply-demand scenario is overblown .

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Postby shyamd » 07 Apr 2008 17:56


ArmenT
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Postby ArmenT » 09 Apr 2008 13:16

USGS to release results of study on Bakken Formation this Thursday.
Link to Article

This could be big folks!

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Postby Stan_Savljevic » 10 Apr 2008 14:55

Two news items from the Chindu,

With Venezuela

Egypt seeks India investment

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Postby MN Kumar » 11 Apr 2008 10:14

Shell had entered the retail distribution market in a big way. They have couple of outlets in Hyderabad. Service wise I rate them the best. But was surprised to see their prices going up sharply in a span of 1 month. For diesel it shot up from 35 to 45. They complained about the subsidies the PSU's get who are still selling at 35/ltr. No wonder Reliance chose to close its 500 outlets all over India.

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Postby upendora » 15 Apr 2008 06:47

Yeah searched for the[url=http://www.thestar.com/Business/article/414164]
Bakken results.
[/url]
LATOC

ArmenT wrote:USGS to release results of study on Bakken Formation this Thursday.

This could be big folks!

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Postby svinayak » 15 Apr 2008 09:34

Brazil oil field could be huge find
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080415/ap_ ... brazil_oil
By ALAN CLENDENNING, AP Business Writer 2 hours, 27 minutes ago

SAO PAULO, Brazil - A deep-water exploration area could contain as much as 33 billion barrels of oil, an amount that would nearly triple Brazil's reserves and make the offshore bloc the world's third-largest known oil reserve, a top energy official said Monday.

National Petroleum Agency President Haroldo Lima cautioned that his information on the field off the coast of Rio de Janeiro is unofficial and needs to be confirmed — but his comments sent shares of state-run oil company Petrobras soaring in New York and Sao Paulo.

Petrobras said in a statement that more studies are needed to determine the potential of what could be the planet's largest oil find in decades. Analysts said the magnitude of the find, if confirmed, could have far-reaching global energy ramifications.

"This would lay to rest some of the peak oil pronouncements that we were out of oil, that we weren't going to find any more and that we have to change our way of life," said Roger Read, an energy analyst and managing director at New York-based investment bank Natixis Bleichroeder Inc., which buys and sells stock in offshore drilling contractor Seadrill, a Petrobras contractor.

Lima told reporters that Petrobras "may have discovered a huge petroleum field that could contain reserves large as 33 billion barrels," amounting to the world's third-largest reserve, according to his spokesman, Luiz Fernando Manso.

His agency later issued a statement saying the comments were based on a recent report in World Oil magazine and a report last November from Brazil's Agencia Estado news agency.

Brazilian Planning Minister Paulo Bernardo declined later Monday to discuss the discovery, saying, "It's better to wait for official confirmation."

Lima's agency regulates Brazil's oil industry, and his initial comments appeared to represent confirmation of what experts have long suspected: That extremely deep exploration areas hundreds of miles off the nation's coast may hold potentially huge reserves.

Brazil's current proven oil reserves are 11.8 billion barrels, according to the U.S. Energy Department. The U.S. has 21.8 billion barrels in proven reserves.

"You're talking about a reserve the size of total U.S. reserves," said Tim Evans, an analyst with Citigroup Inc. in New York. "It's a big, big number."

If proven, the oil in the exploration area called both Carioca and Sugarloaf Mountain by analysts would also be five times larger than the Tupi oil field, whose estimated reserves of 8 billion barrels were announced by Petroleo Brasileiro SA in November. Petrobras also announced a blockbuster find of natural gas in February in an Atlantic Ocean field nicknamed Jupiter.

"More conclusive data about the potential of the discovery will only be known after the conclusion of the other phases of the evaluation process, and the market will be informed at the opportune moment," Petrobras said in its statement to Brazilian securities regulators after Lima made the comments.

While the potential Brazil find could add significant supplies to a global oil market many see as tight, it would likely take the better part of a decade before any of the oil finds its way to market.

Evans said it's impossible to say whether more 33-billion-barrel oil fields exist under the sea.

"Nobody really has data on what's out there in the middle of the ocean," Evans said.

Petrobras' American depository shares closed up 8.3 percent in New York, or US$9.33 (euro5.88) to US$122.18 (euro76.99).

The company's shares went on a wild ride on Sao Paulo's Bovespa exchange, fluctuating between 2 percent and 7 percent higher and settling up 4.8 percent while the benchmark Ibovespa index fell 0.7 percent.

Oil prices were unaffected by the news. Light, sweet crude for May delivery rose US$1.62 (euro1.02) to settle at a record US$111.76 (euro70.43) a barrel.

___

Associated Press writers Stan Lehman in Sao Paulo and John Wilen in New York contributed to this report.

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Postby Philip » 16 Apr 2008 17:04

In the meantime (until Brazil's great find is in our tanks),prices are about to shoot north says this report.

http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/b ... 755873.ece

£5 gallon looms as oil breaks new records
Angela Jameson

Motorists could find themselves paying £5 a gallon for petrol this summer, after a leading energy broker gave warning that $120 a barrel oil was on its way.

The oil price surged closer to $115 a barrel today, breaking new records as the weakening dollar forced investors to seek haven in commodities. Prices rose 67 cents to $114.46 a barrel this morning. In London, futures for Brent crude were up 69 cents to $112.27 a barrel.

Further increases are expected this afternoon when a key report on US fuel stockpiles is released.

Robert Laughlin, energy broker with MF Global, said: "Oil at over $120 a barrel is highly likely in the second quarter because OPEC don't want to give us fresh barrels despite being asked by George Bush, Gordon Brown and everyone else."

Oil price surge propels planes back to basics

Shell boss: carbon plan threatens oil industry
"The trend for prices is certainly upward and I would not be surprised to see $120 a barrel oil between now and the end of June," Mr Laughlin said.

Drivers across the UK are paying a record average of 107.94p for a litre of unleaded petrol according to the latest figures from the AA. Every $2 dollar increase in the cost of oil adds roughly a 1p to a litre of petrol at the pump. However, it takes about four to six weeks for the impact of rising oil prices to be seen at the forecourt.

Diesel broke through the £5 a gallon barrier more than a month ago and is now selling at a record 117.13p — or £5.32 a gallon.

The surging cost of petrol at the pumps means that the cost of filling up a typical 50 litre family petrol car is £7.63 higher than last year, with a diesel version £11.09 dearer to fuel.

Luke Bosdet, an AA spokesman, said: "We are getting pretty close to the £5 gallon and we have already seen some motorway service stations charging 110p a litre for petrol."

Contracts for New York's light sweet crude topped $114 a barrel for the first time yesterday, hitting $114.08 in after hours trading. Brent North Sea crude for May reached a record $112.08.

Collins Stewart, the UK broker, also slashed forecasts for airlines after adjusting its models to take into account a sustained period of oil over $110 a barrel.

The broker made cuts of 12 to 53 per cent on earnings. The worst affected, according to its model, are Aer Lingus and Ryanair.

Supply constraints are expected to be revealed by the US Department of Energy later today. Bad weather in the Gulf has already caused problems this week. On Monday Mexico said that it had closed four export terminals while Shell said that shipments through its 1.1 million-barrel-per-day Calpine pipeline in the southern United States had been temporarily disrupted.

Reports also emerged of minor supply outages in Nigeria, Africa’s biggest oil producer, after rebels caused a fire at the Beniboye oil plants in the Delta State of Nigeria.

"The physical oil market appears tight and appears highly sensitive to news of any supply interruption,â€

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Postby Vipul » 16 Apr 2008 19:37


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Postby Sanjay M » 17 Apr 2008 06:59

In Brazil, Another Gusher
If its size is confirmed, a vast new oil find would catapult Brazil into the world's oil-producing elite. But extraction will be difficult

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Postby upendora » 17 Apr 2008 08:30

People are in a haste to discredit peak oil concerns.
Wait for real news and theoildrum forum to analyse more.

Sanjay M wrote:
In Brazil, Another Gusher
If its size is confirmed, a vast new oil find would catapult Brazil into the world's oil-producing elite. But extraction will be difficult

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Postby shyamd » 20 Apr 2008 22:00


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Postby Sanjay M » 21 Apr 2008 01:36


upendora
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Postby upendora » 21 Apr 2008 19:47

deccanherald link
It will be better for India to start planning for a time when oil will be in limited quantity and prices far above the current level.


I believe the first article in Indian newspaper addressing the declining production. Just like it happened in the West, it is the local newpaper which is covering this first.

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Postby SSridhar » 30 Apr 2008 07:07

Looks like the the IPI Pipeline is nowhere near seeing light even after positive noises by Deora after his TSP visit.
Asked when the deal is expected to be signed, {Shiv Shankar} Menon said "if we have an assured project we can sign tomorrow."

On the negotiations on gas price, he said the issue was not of treating it as a commercial transaction but to see the potential as a confidence-building measure between the three countries.

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Postby SSridhar » 30 Apr 2008 17:31

India seeks more 'comforts' from Iran for IPI
Sources said New Delhi wanted Iran to handover custody of gas at the India-Pakistan border and not at Iran-Pakistan border as had been suggested by Tehran, to cut transit risk through Pakistan. It also opposed price revision clause that Iran is seeking to insert in the Gas Sales Agreement.

Besides, New Delhi pressed Iran to dedicate a particular gas field like South Pars for Iran-Pakistan-India pipeline and sought third party certification of its reserves. It sought to know alternate supply sources in event of depletion of reserves.

Iranian President made no commitments on the issues raised by New Delhi and left it on his oil minister to resolve it with his Indian counterpart, sources said.

India has been boycotting IPI pipeline talks since August 2007 over transit fee demanded by Pakistan for passage of gas through that country. Differences between the two nations were narrowed at meeting of oil ministers of India and Pakistan in Islamabad last week but there is no agreement as yet.

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Postby svinayak » 01 May 2008 22:14

Web sites promote "hypermiling" to save on fuel

By Jon Hurdle Wed Apr 30, 5:44 PM ET

PHILADELPHIA (Reuters) - As U.S. gasoline prices hit records on almost a daily basis, an increasing number of motorists are following a radical driving technique designed to eke out every last mile from a tank of fuel.

Known as 'hypermiling,' the method can double gas mileage, even in gas-guzzling vehicles that would normally get less than 20 mpg.

Promoted on a growing number of Web sites, hypermiling includes pumping up tires to the maximum rating on their sidewalls, which may be higher than levels recommended in car manuals; using engine oil of a low viscosity, and the controversial practice of drafting behind other vehicles on the highway to reduce aerodynamic drag -- a practice begun a few years ago by truck drivers.

The price of gasoline -- which hit a record of nearly $3.61 per gallon on Tuesday, according to travel club AAA -- has rapidly emerged as the public's biggest economic concern.

Gas prices are a "serious problem," ahead of jobs, and healthcare, according to a poll released on Tuesday by the Kaiser Family Foundation.

The "advanced" techniques of hypermiling are in addition to well-known approaches including keeping speed down, accelerating gently, avoiding excessive idling and removing cargo racks to also cut down on aerodynamic drag.

Adherence to hypermiling and other disciplines are designed to boost mileage well in excess of the U.S. Environmental Protection Administration's official ratings, which apply to each car model.

COSTS SAVED

Wayne Gerdes, a former nuclear plant operator from Wadsworth, Illinois, and the originator of hypermiling, said he gets 40-70 mpg out of his Ford Ranger pickup truck, about doubling its official fuel consumption of 25 mpg.

Gerdes, 47, estimates that hypermiling has saved him $15,000 in fuel since he began the technique after the attacks of September 11, events that convinced him that U.S. national security was being undermined by its dependence on oil from the Middle East, and motivated him to reduce his own fuel consumption.

"If every vehicle in the U.S. got 45 miles per gallon, we would not import any oil," he said.

Deron Lovaas, vehicles campaign director at environmental group the Natural Resources Defense Council, said most hypermiling techniques are "sensible recommendations" that could drive down demand and even prices if widely adopted.

"We should be looking under every rock for potential energy savings," he said.

He said he could not recommend drafting behind fast-moving trucks because it could potentially lead to highway accidents.

Hypermiling can even make fuel-sipping gas-electric hybrid cars more efficient. Chuck Thomas, 50, a computer programmer from Lewisville, Texas, said he has been getting 71 mpg from his Honda Insight, a hybrid whose EPA rating is 58 mpg, in the two years since he has been hypermiling.

Among Thomas' techniques is "pulse and glide" in which he accelerates and then coasts with the engine off until around 15 mph when he kicks the engine back on and accelerates again. "It's the automotive equivalent of skateboarding," he said.

(Editing by Timothy Gardner and Philip Barbara)



LINK

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Postby sankum » 01 May 2008 23:44


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Postby Prem » 02 May 2008 10:30

From the link by Sankum ( It has tremendous significence)

"Hydrocarbon has been found in the exploratory well Karjan-9, drilled in the nomination block Karjan extension-1 in Ankleshwar (Gujarat). The testing result has established a new prospect discovery, sources close to development said.

If commerciality of the discovery is established, India will be one of the top oil-producing countries as the Deccan Traps (also called Deccan Syneclise) is stated to have massive oil deposits, estimated around 30 BILLION TONES. The Deccan Traps, considered 65 million years old, extend from Saurashtra to central India. "

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Postby sauravjha » 02 May 2008 14:17

this is nothing new . ONGC has been saying that the "Deccan is floating on oil" for at least the last thirty five years . I am not holding my breath. economic recovery of these deposits is far from viably established.

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Postby Prem » 02 May 2008 23:48

sauravjha wrote:this is nothing new . ONGC has been saying that the "Deccan is floating on oil" for at least the last thirty five years . I am not holding my breath. economic recovery of these deposits is far from viably established.


The oil prices for ther last 35 years were low comparing to current rate . The techonolgy will eventually catch up and help exploiting every last drop of oil found anywhere.

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Postby Mahendra » 03 May 2008 00:20

From the above link

Former oil minister Mani Shankar Aiyar had been high on the prospectivity of the Deccan traps. Mr Aiyar always maintained that the Deccan plateau had tremendous potential and has more oil than the Gulf. However, his successor, Murli Deora, has been finally able to persuade ONGC to undertake the oil hunt.



Shouldnt we be exploring oil on a war footing given our huge oil import bill. Surely has something to do with individual entities benefiting from this oil imports.

The oil prices for ther last 35 years were low comparing to current rate . The techonolgy will eventually catch up and help exploiting every last drop of oil found anywhere.


Exactly. Premji is on the money as always.
I hope MS Aiyar is right for once and Deccan Plateu turns out to be the new oil capital of the world.

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Postby bala » 09 May 2008 02:04

Fisheries College and Research Institute achieves breakthrough

[quote]The Fisheries College and Research Institute (FCRI) here has made a breakthrough by standardising a research protocol for production of bio-fuel from marine micro algae.

A team of scientists at the Fisheries Biotechnology Centre of the FCRI, led by S. Felix, has extracted bio-fuel from marine micro algae using ‘Transestrification (conversion of an organic acid ester into another ester of that same acid) Method,’ involving catalysed chemical reaction on micro algal oil.

“We have used sulphuric acid as a catalyst for transestrification during our trials,â€


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