From The Titusville Morning Herald of June 17, 1866, "Our attention has been called to a series of experiments that have been made in the wells of various localities by Col. Roberts, with his newly patented torpedo
. ... The torpedo... is lowered into the well, down to the spot, as near as can be ascertained, where it is necessary to explode it. ... The object of the torpedo is to clean out all the deposits at the bottom of the well."
In the western Pennsylvania oilfields of the second half of the 1800s, "shooters" were men who set off nitroglycerin
charges in wells to get the oil flowing again. Tales of Destruction
relates stories and legends of this absurdly hazardous job. Additional notes here
, in Samuel Pees's Oil History
posted by tss
on Nov 5, 2009 -
"We only went into Iraq because of oil, you know." "We only appease Saudi Arabia because of oil, you know." To hear people talk sometimes, you'd think they never used oil.
- David Mitchell on hypocrisy and politics
, and how we blame our leaders for making decisions based on what we want, not on what we say.
posted by Artw
on Oct 19, 2009 -
The Images of Eyes
Gallery exhibits images and paintings of eyes by international artists, featuring work from about 200 artists from Algeria to Zimbabwe. Gallery I
contains figurative paintings, oil and watercolor paintings, portraits, charcoal and ink drawings, lithographs, sculpture, digital, and other fine art content. Gallery II
exhibits nude paintings, so may be NSFW.
posted by netbros
on Oct 11, 2009 -
Inspired by a recent Wall Street Journal* article, Robert Rapier
, chemical engineer, peakist, blogger, and currently chief technology officer for a bioenergy company, reviews the pretenders
, and niche players
in the emerging field of green energy, with particular consideration of liquid fuels. Meanwhile, the boffins at Foreign Policy consider the risks of the coming of the green energy era
, and depict the end of the oil age.
(Both part of FP's extensive look at the end of oil
) [more inside]
posted by Diablevert
on Sep 8, 2009 -
The Iraqi who saved Norway from oil:
requires registration, but it's worth it.
...dependency on natural resources can poison a country’s economic and political system. Inflows of hard currency push up prices, squeezing the competitiveness of non-oil businesses and starving them of capital. As a result, productivity growth withers (a phenomenon known as “Dutch disease” after the negative effects of North Sea gas production on the Netherlands). Meanwhile, the state institutions in charge of oil often become corrupt and evade democratic control. And oil-rich states almost invariably waste the income it brings, many ending their oil booms deeper in debt than when they started.
posted by anotherpanacea
on Aug 29, 2009 -
A Saudi Prince
tells America to give up futile dreams of energy independence. Op-Ed in the NYT
says Peak Oil is a waste of energy and an illusion. Meanwhile, the OECD's energy advisors, the IEA are saying cheap oil will run out in ten years
, a decade sooner than estimates made as recently as 2007.
posted by bystander
on Aug 26, 2009 -
Multi - polarity in Eurasia.
Pepe Escobar on Iran, China and the New Silk Road 1
Iran and China just signed a $3 bn. deal for China to help develop Iran's refinery capacity in Abadan and the Gulf. ( previous
posted by adamvasco
on Aug 10, 2009 -
Car companies were facing a variety of efficiency and emission standards throughout the United States, from the Department of Transportation, the Environmental Protection Agency, On May 19th, and then an even stricter emission standard from California and 13 other states (plus DC). On May 19th, President Obama announced nation-wide new vehicle fuel efficiency standards
for new cars and trucks through 2016. The goal is to rapidly increase fuel efficiency,without compromising safety, by an average of 5, culminating in 39 MPG for cars and 30 MPG for light trucks. Currently, no auto makers are meet the final standards
, though some are closer than others. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief
on May 28, 2009 -
prepares to buy up foreign oil and gas companies with its huge currency reserves.
posted by Smaaz
on Feb 23, 2009 -
When the modern oil industry began 150 years ago
, many speculators moved into Northwestern Pennsylvania. Among them was John Wilkes Booth, who walked off the stage and onto the oil fields in an attempt to increase his fortunes with the Dramatic Oil Company
. [more inside]
posted by hoppytoad
on Jan 10, 2009 -
In 2009, a remarkably gifted politician, confronting a remarkably difficult set of challenges
, will have to learn to say "No we can't"
, Guantánamo will prove a moral minefield
, economic recovery will be invisible to the naked eye
, governments must prepare for the day they stop financial guarantees
, we will judge our commitment to sustainability
, scientists should research the causes of religion
, we will all be potential online paparazzi
, English will have more words than any other language
(but it's meaningless), Afghanistan will see a surge of Western (read: American) troops
, Iran will continue its nuclear quest
while diplomacy lies in shambles
, the sea floor is the new frontier
, we should rethink aging
, (non-)voters will continue to thwart the European project
-- but cheap travel will continue to buoy it
-- though it has some unfinished business to attend to
, and a Nordic defence bond will blossom
.The Economist: The World in 2009
. [more inside]
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane
on Nov 27, 2008 -
CIBC's Jeff Rubin and Peter Buchanan have written an article
(pdf, pages 4-6) arguing that triple digit oil prices (and not plunging real estate prices) are to blame for the current economic woes of the OECD. [via]
posted by adamdschneider
on Nov 7, 2008 -
"Fog of War"
cited by United States Ambassador to the United Nations Zalmay Khalilzad. He was speaking
to journalists to clarify reports concerning his unauthorised
contacts with foreign government officials, among them Asif Ali Zardari; a then contender to succeed Pervez Musharraf as president of Pakistan.
Earlier this year he was being touted as a possible successor to Hamid Karzai as President of Afghanistan as seen in these
is Zalmay Khalilzad? Neo con
and oil businessman
. [more inside]
posted by adamvasco
on Sep 10, 2008 -
Corrupt U.S. Government officials leased the Teapot Dome oil field
to one Harry F. Sinclair in 1922 in a sleazy no-bid contract.
Turn back the clock. 27 years earlier, suspected grifter Gilmer Bonfils
had seized control of the Denver Post; he and his family turned it from a sleepy, staid paper into a
wild, brazen broadsheet
. So brazen they were shot by a furious lawyer. For an editorial page
, Tammen and Bonfils substituted invective, raked up so much scandal—a good deal of it true — that they kept a loaded shotgun in their office to discourage reader complaints. As the Post grew in power and prosperity, its proprietors branched into other fields; the Post became the first and last U.S. daily ever to own a circus (Sells-Floto), run a burlesque house and sell coal." [more inside]
posted by felix
on Aug 13, 2008 -
-- oilman T. Boone Pickens has a plan to reduce America's oil dependency problem: exploit the country's massive windpower potential for domestic energy, replacing natural gas, and then use natural gas to power cars instead of foreign oil. Some problems
with the plan.
posted by Laugh_track
on Jul 10, 2008 -