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April 30, 2010

Plenty of Oil Left


This might be so, but getting to it is another kettle of fish. We just had a frightening example of what can go wrong while drilling for oil below the ocean when the Deepwater Horizon exploded.

2009 was a big year for oil discoveries (more than 10 billion barrels in potential reserves). More to come when the arctic can be ‘tapped.’

Here are some some things to think(worry) about.

1. The oil that’s left is deep, hard to drill for, and expensive to access.

2. With the rising tech challenges comes more risk.

3. Rust. One of Matt Simmons’ sayings is ‘rust never sleeps’ What did you think happened to all those pipes?

4. Price volatility. Gotta make sure drilling is worthwhile, and consumers can still afford to buy it.

The whole world of oil is a delicate balancing act.

Filed under:Fuel Price Trends | by Pump Girl @ 5:14 pm | 

April 22, 2010

All You Ever Wanted To Know About Life (on an oil rig)


Emily Yoffee is a human guinea pig. She does things so you don’t have to, and writes about them in Slate.

In 2007 she took a 24-hour ‘vacation’ on an oil rig.

You simply must read the whole article. A synopsis can not possibly do justice.

Emily flew by helicopter 150 miles into the Gulf of Mexico to the Ocean America rig (same one that had the explosion the other day). She was immediately outfitted with hardhat, safety-glasses & steel-toed boots and had to remove all jewelry.

She toured the rig which sounds an awful lot like a submarine to us: small quarters, a place for everything and everything in it place. Food is available 24/7.

Standard rig menu: steak on Tuesday and Saturday, seafood on Friday, fried chicken on Sunday

Emily ate, toured the whole rig with drilling supervisor, Rusty Critselous, watched some of the crew fishing from 90 feet up, slept overnight.

It certainly opened our eyes.

Filed under:Fumes | by Pump Girl @ 6:20 pm | 

April 21, 2010

More Peeks At Gas & Oil


Average gas prices by region from the Consumer Reports Car Blog. Oh how we love living in the Midwest!

Crude oil prices jet up to approx. $84/ barrel. That’s plus $1 overnight now that airlines are flying again.

The two principles of Saudi oil policy: #1 maintain moderate international oil prices; #2 have sufficient capacity to stabilize the market short-term. Not a fan of volatility.

Blast on rig owned by Transocean,ltd off the La coast. Some workers injured and brought to hospitals in the area by helicopter, some still missing. Minimal oil in the water at this time.

Filed under:Fuel Price Trends | by Pump Girl @ 5:11 pm | 

April 19, 2010

Peaking Your Interest On Gas and Oil


Poor, poor Haliburton didn’t make as much money this quarter due to contracts it signed when oil prices were slumping last year. (gasp!)

Oil and natural production has been rejuvenated in the big old Texas oil field of Granite Wash. The new technique? Drilling sideways.

Sources of growing oil demand: #1 China, #2 Saudia Arabia. Sort of the opposite of NIMBY.

Analysts thought the price of oil was heading higher. Enter the Goldman Sachs debacle and the volcano and down it goes. Probably not for long, though.

Steven Chu was really talking about the arguments of ASPO that we are already there, when he spoke of ‘Peak Oil.’

Filed under:Energy,Fuel Price Trends,Fumes,Gas price | by Pump Girl @ 5:11 pm | 

April 18, 2010

Heavy Costs of Vacation Travel


Drive or fly. Nothing is cheap. Gas is rising to something like $3/gal at the pump, maybe being driven by the expectation of global consumption. China, other countries in the Asia-Pacific and Middle East are expected to use more fuel.

Airline fare prices are rising. Priceline predicts as much as a 25% increase for the summer travel season. Plus, discount airlines such as Spirit are even charging for carry-on bags ( Does $45 sound like a gouge to you?)

Camping out in the backyard is looking better and better

Filed under:Fuel cost,Fuel Price Trends | by Pump Girl @ 11:28 am |