T Nation

Oil - Produced by the Earth?

Very interesting article in Motor Trend, touching on some recent evidence that the theory that the earth actually produces hydrocarbons from base components, as opposed to their being produced by the remains of formerly living dinosaurs and plants, may actually be correct:

http://blogs.motortrend.com/6245781/editorial/is-the-earth-producing-more-oil/index.html

EXCERPT:

[i] Lost in the big news last week-the race for the Democratic nomination, the reeling U.S. economy, the ongoing life/death saga that is “Dancing with the Stars”-came word that a new deep-water exploration area off the coast of Brazil could contain as much as 33 billion barrels of oil. How much is that? If estimates are accurate, the Brazilian find would amount to the world’s third-largest oil reserve. In comparison, the U.S. has proven oil reserves of 21.8 billion barrels. …

The find also brings up a name worth remembering: Thomas Gold. The Austrian-born astrophysicist, who died in 2004, was a renowned maverick in the science community, a brilliant rogue whose anti-establishment proclamations were often proven right. For instance, in the 1960s, as NASA began its assault on the moon, many scientists debated whether the moon's surface was comprised of hard rock or might in fact be a layer of dust so thick that, upon touchdown, the Apollo lunar modules would sink out of sight. Gold, studying evidence from microimpacts, moon cratering, electrostatic fields, and more, boldly predicted that the astronauts�?? boots would sink into the lunar regolith no more than three centimeters. And, give or take a centimeter or so, he was proven right.

What does Gold have to do with the recent Brazil oil find? In 1999, Gold published "The Deep Hot Biosphere," a paper that postulated that coal and oil are produced not by the decomposition of organic materials, but in fact are "abiogenic"-the product of tectonic forces; i.e., deeply embedded hydrocarbons being brought up and through the earth's mantle and transformed into their present states by bacteria living in the earth's crust.

The majority of the world's scientists scoff at Gold's theory, and "fossil fuel" remains the accepted descriptor of oil. Yet in recent years Russia has quietly become the world's top producer of oil, in part by drilling wells as deep as 40,000 feet�??far below the graveyards of T-Rex and his Mesozoic buddies.

Is it possible that Thomas Gold was right again, and that the earth is actually still producing oil?[/i]

Shell turns to wood chips and straw in search for the road fuel of the future

I know Golds theory and that the Russians had some success with it. There also seem to be hydrocarbons on satellites that could not possibly have sustained enough life to produce hydrocarbons on a significant scale if the fossil fuel theory is correct.

However there is a German company making diesel out of wood trying to mimic the process described by the fossil fuel theory.

Anyway, oil is not going to run out soon.

[quote]orion wrote:

Anyway, oil is not going to run out soon.[/quote]

Excellent. Affording it will be an increased luxury, however.

Abiogenic makes more sense than fossil fuel, unfortunately regardless of the origin we need to drill deeper and in more remote locations to get oil.

People need to adjust to the new reality of expensive oil.

I don’t believe we will run out of oil anytime in the next 100-200 years.

Most proven reserves are underestimated and the “proven” number comes more from financial regulation then geological estimates and the standard is based on 60’s era drilling technology. If you assume the extraction technology will continue to develop then the quantities avialable will increase.

Oil shale and sands becoming economically viable when oil is above $50/bbl. It is hugely profitable at today’s prices.

$117 oil has about $30-40 of specualtion included in the price. If the US and the EU could ever get united behind the cause for lower oil they could blast the specualtors out and get the price to a more manageable $50-60 per barrel.

this is interesting

Yes we have plenty of oil right now. Politics, greed, and complete ignorance has resulted in the manipulation of high prices.

The first thing people need to remember is the real estate market. What happened there? Everything was overpriced, and then the bubble burst. Prices really just came back down to reality.

The same thing will happen with oil.

Now I do not have enough information to truely comment on the accuracy of abiogenic petroleum, but it would explain why every single oil find has produced more oil then estimated. Lots more. I really mean lots more.

Even if not, we still have plenty of oil. People keep looking at only the easily processed light stuff, not counting the harder to process stuff, such as heavy oil, and oil shale and sands, etc.

Anyone paying attention to the news has noticed a lot of oil has been found in the last few years, and that is only because people are looking for it again.

If the idiots can get their heads out of their asses, we would start building new Nuclear plants. Currently safer then ever before, and the waste is not barely as bad as everyone is led to believe.

Then electric cars become viable.

Currently if everyone purchased an electric car then cities would experience black outs daily. But still the above car is like $5 to charge fully, and will go 220 miles on that charge. (And 0 - 60 in 3.9 seconds is not bad at all.) Unfortunately I believe this entire years production line has already been sold.

But the fact that this is being sold now, and is not only a decent car, but is being produced to compete with expensive sports cars shows how technology has come along.

Now if we still need oil:

http://discovermagazine.com/2006/apr/anything-oil/article_view?b_start:int=1&-C=

Yes I keep posting the same shit. But this article shows that it is possible to crate oil out of waste. So no matter what, we have options.

There’s definitely a supply-side pressure from China and India on oil particularly and commodities in general - but I do think there’s a lot of speculation in commodities due to the stagflation fears. The combination of more supply coming online and consumers switching to less consumption should end up addressing it - and if that comes in concert with a shoring up of the dollar and/or the economy, the oil bubble could deflate pretty rapidly. I note that the Saudis are not too keen on increasing production - they learned from the last bubble…

My prediction is that OPEC and the oil companies better enjoy the profits while they last. The prices have pushed high enough to force us to reduce our dependence. Hence, as soon as everything takes hold our demand will plummet and so will the prices.
In the end, this is a good thing.

The barrel just hit 118$.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/7360521.stm

Rainjack who was claiming at the beginning of the year that prices will go down until, at least, May was wrong on all counts. Interestingly, he hasn’t showed up ever since.

[quote]lixy wrote:
The barrel just hit 118$.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/7360521.stm

Rainjack who was claiming at the beginning of the year that prices will go down until, at least, May was wrong on all counts. Interestingly, he hasn’t showed up ever since.[/quote]

Or it could just be that he is an accountant, and it’s tax season,…just a thought.

A cool post on possible oil substitutes (minus the stuff in the beginning that seems peak-oily):

http://www.futurepundit.com/archives/005152.html

[quote]bigflamer wrote:
lixy wrote:
The barrel just hit 118$.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/7360521.stm

Rainjack who was claiming at the beginning of the year that prices will go down until, at least, May was wrong on all counts. Interestingly, he hasn’t showed up ever since.

Or it could just be that he is an accountant, and it’s tax season,…just a thought. [/quote]

I was under the impression that he was in the cattle business. My bad then.

Today, I predict $6 gas in 1.5 to 2 years.

[quote]lixy wrote:
bigflamer wrote:
lixy wrote:
The barrel just hit 118$.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/7360521.stm

Rainjack who was claiming at the beginning of the year that prices will go down until, at least, May was wrong on all counts. Interestingly, he hasn’t showed up ever since.

Or it could just be that he is an accountant, and it’s tax season,…just a thought.

I was under the impression that he was in the cattle business. My bad then.[/quote]

His clients are.

The term to Google is,

“abiogenic petroleum origin”

This theory is not inconceivable. It is also not inconceivable that the accepted theory is correct. Theoretically anything that contains hydrocarbons could be converted to petrol, though through different processes.

Witnessing the processes would be helpful.

[quote]BostonBarrister wrote:
A cool post on possible oil substitutes (minus the stuff in the beginning that seems peak-oily):

http://www.futurepundit.com/archives/005152.html [/quote]

I like the algae biodiesel solution.

Genetically-modified algae would be even better.

Seems like a much more reasonable choice than wasting food crops and agricultural land for the same purpose.

We can build algae-biodiesel plants in the desert, floating on the ocean, anywhere OTHER than farm land.

It’d curb the current inflation of food prices as well.

ElbowStrike

[quote]pat wrote:
My prediction is that OPEC and the oil companies better enjoy the profits while they last. The prices have pushed high enough to force us to reduce our dependence. Hence, as soon as everything takes hold our demand will plummet and so will the prices.
In the end, this is a good thing.[/quote]

As soon as we find a viable source, whether that be Alaska, a better trading partner, or another energy source such as synthetic oil from coal, OPEC will boost supply, thus lowering costs. I don’t think our demand is going to change greatly. What we MUST do is make sure that whatever solution we decide on is a solution that will work long term. If we don’t find a long term solution, then as soon as OPEC drops prices, our demand for foreign oil will again sky rocket, leading to the same cycle that we have seen for the last 40 years.

[quote]tedro wrote:
I don’t think our demand is going to change greatly. [/quote]

You’re either abnormally self-centered or completely out-of-touch with reality.

American demand will not change greatly. It’s the demand from emerging markets with people breeding like bunnies that is increasing dramatically, thus driving prices ever so high.