Some Peak News

There have been a few interesting articles relating to Peak Oil that I wanted to pass peoples way.

#1: Does the Peak Oil Myth Fall Down… to steal directly from the EnergyBulleting/Oil Drum release:

With the release of Why the “Peak Oil” Theory Falls Down — Myths, Legends and the Future of Oil Resources by Peter M. Jackson, Cambridge Energy Research Associates (CERA) attempts to cast doubt on the credibility of those with imminent, empirically-based concerns about our future oil supply.

This is an excellent debunking of the Peak Oil debunkers. The crux is this: If you look at *all* the numbers that are *publicly available* (the CERA report uses figures from unpublished, private datasets) the conclusions are quite simple and mathematical. And they’re not encouraging in the near term.

#2: Bitumen sale in Canada again from Energy Bulletin…

Petro Canada is selling some of its’ in-situ tar sand operation. The article made me think of the process of making oil out of tarsands. Think of it this way… You know the black gunk that is used for patches roads? You see it melting in hot summer sun..

Well, that’s basically “bitumen” (actually a more refined form) is basically the same as tar sand.. without the sand. And that’s what you get from “in-situ” operations (different from the mining process). Now here’s something I never thought of… you can’t slide that tar through an oil pipeline… it doesn’t “flow” at room temperature… so you have to use “diluent” which is actually basically natural gas liquid.

and *That* is one of the main purposes for the new LNG import/export terminal at Kitimat in Northern BC. Many of the imports of LNG will be used, not for NG consumption but rather to import diluent to then *export* tarsands production. Sounds confused? Ya,.. it is. And it speaks volumes as to why economically the norm simply will not continue.

Finally #3:

The all important Monthly Oil Production Chart Update Click the link… see the chart. Place your bets.

We’re on the plateau… the only question is.. where does the shelf end?

Oh, I almost forgot the best article of all.. in case you were counting on all that Ethanol to save us:

Here’s #4

As many as 100 million acres of cropland and pastures would have to be dedicated to cultivating biomass fuels like switchgrass to support a national goal of 25 percent renewable energy use by 2025, a University of Tennessee study says.

100 million acres.

According to the CIA WorldFactbook (Thanks Spooks!)

There is just over 1.9 million acres of irrigated land in Canada

There is 55.3 million acres of irrigated land in the Unitied States

One reply on “Some Peak News”

  1. I don’t think biofuel crops require irrigated land to grow. There are about 400 million acres of cropland in the United States and 160 million or so in Canada. Converting pasturelands to biofuel crops could be done.

    There are a lot of questions, though, about whether this would have to be subsidized given the current prices of oil and coal. The energy needed to grow fuel crops is also a factor.

    But if ten percent of North American energy needs could be met through fuel crops, that would be a substantial contribution. The problem is that we may not be able to replace the energy presently supplied by oil if oil supplies tighten sharply enough.

    A lot may depend on newly discovered (or existing but untapped) offshore oil in the North Pacific and Gulf of Mexico.

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