388 posts tagged with oil.
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Ghawar, Going, Gone...

Heard enough about Pain at the Pump? The 24-hour news love to cover the "unreasonable" record gasoline prices, but the real issue is crude oil supply--and this latest installment of Stuart Staniford's highly detailed analysis of the world's largest oil field, Ghawar in Saudi Arabia, provides new evidence of sharply declining production. Can Saudi Arabia really increase supply to meet world demand that is surging on growth in India and China? Signs point to no--in the past week they have again voted to maintain OPEC's "voluntary" production cuts, and their petroleum minister commented that there may not be a "need" to increase Saudi production much further.
posted by DAJ on May 15, 2007 - 64 comments

Blood and oil

China's African oil safari turns bloody again. "Before dawn this morning At 0430 AM local time in Ogaden, the 'Dufaan' commando unit of the Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF) conducted a military operation in the vicinity of Obala, 30km North-West of Degah-Bur in in Northern Ogaden." Sixty-five Ethiopians and nine Chinese were killed in an attack of an unprecedented scale. Another seven Chinese workers are being held by the ONLF. (BBCFocusAfrica interviews ONLF spokesman (.ram streaming audio))
posted by Abiezer on Apr 25, 2007 - 12 comments

So much drama off the LBC

Chaffee, White, Grissom & Freeman are the names of four artificial islands immediately off the Southern California port of Long Beach. From the shore, they each look like an inhabited island paradise, complete with waterfalls, interesting buildings, many palm trees and crazy nighttime party lighting. In fact, they are offshore oil wells, built on 10 acre Dubai-esque man-made islands created for the purpose of housing the oil wells, and disguised so as to comply with local aesthetic standards.
posted by jonson on Apr 11, 2007 - 25 comments

Halliburton Moves Headquarters to Dubai, UAE.

Halliburton Moves Corporate Headquarters to Dubai, UAE. Oil services giant Halliburton, parent company of soon to be spun off KBR, and recipient of many no-bid government contracts, is moving its corporate headquarters to Dubai in the United Arab Emirates. Meanwhile, the US and the UAE are working on a free trade agreement. The UAE and China are the two largest exporters to Iran, and some speculate that the purpose of the move is to open up Iran as a legitimate market for Halliburton, because as a US firm its acknowledged trade with Iran is of questionable legality. Among the implications of this corporate move is that the US military will now be heavily dependent on a contractor that is a foreign company.
posted by Pastabagel on Mar 12, 2007 - 76 comments

Putting Peak Oil in its place

Peak Oil no more? Prophets of peak oil are being proven wrong as new technologies increase oil recovery rates. In fact, the entire peak oil theory might be based on flawed assumptions.
posted by blahblahblah on Mar 6, 2007 - 94 comments

Last chance for Southeast Louisiana

Last Chance. "It took the Mississippi River 6,000 years to build the Louisiana coast. It took man (and natural disasters) 75 years to destroy it. Experts agree we have 10 years to act before the problem is too big to solve." [Via First Draft.]
posted by homunculus on Mar 5, 2007 - 19 comments

US Energy Flows

Lawrence Livermore National Lab produces fascinating charts of energy flow in the US (more). More energy use statisitics can be found at the Energy Information Administration.
posted by pombe on Feb 16, 2007 - 30 comments

Oil Rig Disasters

Oil Rig Disasters--Deadliest, most expensive, blowouts, sinkings. Building a rig. Barrels of rig pictures. NOAA's archive of spill pictures. ROVs, rigs, vessels. All kind of Canadian rig (and related) pictures. More.
posted by OmieWise on Feb 14, 2007 - 19 comments

Bullet The Blue Sky

Venezuelan State TV aired a show yesterday in which they complained about a certain videogame, in which the goal is to overthrow the "power-hungry tyrant who messes with Venezuela's oil supply." In Venezuela, people are a bit offended by the images of Caracas being destroyed in the game, outside, some people are offended because one of the owners of the controversial company that created the game is Bono, The Defender of the Poor, Bono, and they are trying to stop it.
posted by micayetoca on Feb 7, 2007 - 45 comments

When the world was powered by the black fuel.

gas: tractor pulls and demolition derbies. Music, a bar graph, and a clown [youtube]
posted by nervousfritz on Jan 15, 2007 - 15 comments

YMMV

Wayne Gerdes, king of the hypermilers
posted by MetaMonkey on Jan 3, 2007 - 31 comments

When is a conspiracy theory not a theory?

Hitler's Carmaker:
While GM was mobilizing the Third Reich, the company was also leading a criminal conspiracy to monopolistically undermine mass transit in dozens of American cities that would help addict the United States to oil.
--Edwin Black, author of IBM and the Holocaust explains why the U.S. dependency on oil is no accident. Not everyone agrees, of course.
posted by craniac on Dec 27, 2006 - 38 comments

NYT OpEd by Thomas Homer-Dixon "The End of Ingenuity"

The End of Ingenuity (NYT OpEd by Thomas Homer-Dixon)"..cheap energy is tightening, and humankind’s enormous output of greenhouse gases is disrupting the earth’s climate. Together, these two constraints could eventually hobble global economic growth and cap the size of the global economy." See also The Upside of Down: Catastrophe, Creativity and the Renewal of Civilization. (2006).
posted by stbalbach on Nov 30, 2006 - 61 comments

A new Cold War with Russia

W Joseph Stroup believes we are headed to a new Cold War. It may be triggered when Russia attacks the West's Achilles' heel (part II: Russia tips the balance) and a Russian oil grab 'puts western supplies at risk'.
posted by stbalbach on Nov 26, 2006 - 39 comments

Put your money in oil shale production

This Israeli process could turn the gigantic oil shale deposits of the US into the largest energy production in the world, outstripping the Middle East's role and dramatically altering the world economy to be even MORE US-centric.
posted by Kickstart70 on Nov 18, 2006 - 39 comments

New oil company propaganda video

This video about the history of petroleum industry propaganda used old archived footage found on the WayBackMachine. It shows some ridiculous propaganda videos from the past and leads us to the campaigns that the oily, slick PR-types and marketers are using today. It's hard to believe that companies like Ford Motor Company and ExxonMobil still get away with funding these industry front groups.
posted by jacob hauser on Nov 6, 2006 - 9 comments

Hummers for all, thanks to Apartheid and the Nazis.

Green Nazis.
posted by Meatbomb on Oct 24, 2006 - 17 comments

Oil prices and housing bubble

The Specter of Recession in 2007. With the US housing bubble falling for the first time in over a decade, oil traders are dumping inventories (and driving down prices) in fear of a US-led global recession brought on by the end of the biggest housing bubble in history. Previous.
posted by stbalbach on Oct 4, 2006 - 40 comments

any color you want as long as it's black

To hear Rupert Murdoch's newspaper The Australian tell it, "Science" is now tempering its claims about the urgency of Global Warming. Arts and Letters Daily goes even further, declaring a "Catastrophe Postponed" on its front page. But a closer look at the meager factual content of The Australian article (as opposed to the specious inferences and dramatic allusions to "leaked IPCC documents") suggests that, in fact, "Science" has just gotten more specific about its Global Warming claims, and the real situation remains as urgent as ever if we continue on our current track. Meanwhile, in tangentially related news, Chevron is reporting a massive new oil find in the Gulf of Mexico. Not to imply any kind of conspiracy here (since, you know, "Science" has proven that actual conspiracies are an urban myth).
posted by saulgoodman on Sep 5, 2006 - 33 comments

More pain at the pump?

Prudhoe Bay oil production shut down. A large percentage of the largest major oil field in the US will be shut down, possibly for months, on news that the transfer pipelines which move the oil to the main Trans-Alaska Pipeline are badly corroded. [more inside...]
posted by zoogleplex on Aug 7, 2006 - 39 comments

Chicago Tribune special report on peak oil

The Chicago Tribune special report on peak oil. Includes a documentary and reporting by Pulitzer-Prize winner Paul Salopek.
posted by stbalbach on Jul 31, 2006 - 78 comments

Mmmm, mmm good... Freshly squeezed crude!

Suppose you were like this guy and you had devoted nearly a decade of your life to figuring out how to make oil from turkey gizzards. Now suppose this guy and a bunch of pencil-pushers like these guys came along and started challenging the long-term viability of carbon-based fuels (whether of the freshly-squeezed variety or not). For sake of argument, suppose they were right. How reluctant do you suppose you'd be to admit it, even to yourself?
posted by saulgoodman on Jul 10, 2006 - 45 comments

urban jungle

the new urban jungle. . . is a growing movement led by cities like San Francisco, New York, and Leiden to restore active and vibrant natural systems in urban areas. Far from the eden-like depictions of nature of yesteryear, i.e. the garden of earthly delights (nonetheless, still attracting some dynamic new christian converts), the movement has morphed into today's backyard and grassroots environmental movement which is more and more a picture of hybridity, compromise, mixed-use, and ultimately, taking nature out of the walled islands of zoos, aquaria, national parks and other thick-walled institutions and offering a different kind of everyday "unmediated" community experience with the new urban wilderness. VIDEO LINK
posted by huckhound on Jul 6, 2006 - 1 comment

The bourse is the source, of course, of course

Iran is the next target of the U.S. because of the establishment of the Iranian Oil Bourse, which would trade in Euros, not dollars.
No, it isn't.
Yeah, it probably is.
No, seriously, it's not. (Yeah, really though, it is)
Ok, maybe it is, maybe it isn't either way the odds were running 50/50 we'd bomb Iran by the end of the year. (previously - here)
posted by Smedleyman on Jul 4, 2006 - 44 comments

Big OilCoal. The other black fossil fuel.

The average American uses 20 pounds of coal a day. "our shiny white iPod economy is propped up by dirty black rocks.. I see more people dying of particle air pollution than are dying of AIDS." Coal accounts for nearly 40 percent of America's carbon dioxide emissions. Big Coal by Jeff Goodell.
posted by stbalbach on Jun 24, 2006 - 79 comments

Whistleblogging?

Oil spill in northern British.Columbia, nobody reports it.
posted by angrybeaver on Jun 8, 2006 - 15 comments

History of Oil

Brit comedian Rob Newman presents his 'History of Oil'.
posted by piscatorius on May 29, 2006 - 63 comments

Ecuador takes over operations of Occidental Petroleum

Ecuador takes over operations of Occidental Petroleum Ecuador began on Tuesday to take over operations of U.S. oil giant Occidental Petroleum Corp, the latest move in Latin America against foreign energy producers after nationalization in Bolivia and growing state intervention in Venezuela.
posted by mountainmambo on May 17, 2006 - 51 comments

Poom Time ?

Storm Warning. Seems like Iran has already started flexing it's economic muscles-haven't seen it reported that widely anywhere else, but these two events seem to be connected. Then again, maybe I've been spending too much time reading itulip.
posted by jaksoul on May 14, 2006 - 35 comments

Blood for oil

"Blood for oil" seems to be the new cry on campus (or at least "Plasma for gas").
posted by 445supermag on May 5, 2006 - 30 comments

What Peak Oil means in the near-term

The Paradigm is the Enemy: A sobering but cogent account of the state of Peak Oil, what it's already led to (reported and ignored), and what is in store for us in the near future. The worst part is the political impossibility of addressing the problem constructively: that would require acknowledging the problem.
posted by LeisureGuy on Apr 29, 2006 - 99 comments

Freedom of the Seas

Supertankers are so cool. Click previous sentence for more information.
posted by thirteenkiller on Apr 29, 2006 - 43 comments

San Francisco gets peak oil

San Francisco on Tuesday became the first major U.S. city to pass a resolution acknowledging the threats posed by peak oil. The resolution cites an influential study commissioned by the U.S. Dept. of Energy, known as the Hirsch Report, and proponents delivered copies of the The Oil Age Poster to elected officials in the run up to the vote.
posted by stbalbach on Apr 14, 2006 - 27 comments

an off the books slush fund that both the Americans and their Iraqi allies could use with impunity to cover expenditures they would rather keep secret

How Much Oil Has Iraq Been Exporting Since We Invaded? And how much revenue should be recorded? --Iraq’s oil exports hit another post-invasion low in December and January, according to the Oil & Gas Journal. How do they know? Good question: according to Reuters, production and exports have gone unmetered since the Coalition Provisional Authority took over the country following the 2003 invasion; until new meters are installed (in 1-2 more years), everybody’s just guessing. Our Government's Energy Information Administration has all sorts of statistics--anyone wanna figure out how they're derived regarding Iraq?
posted by amberglow on Apr 4, 2006 - 22 comments

God's Own Party

Former GOP senior strategist Kevin Phillips wrote the political Bible of the New Right, The Emerging Republican Majority. He coined the term "Sun Belt." He voted for Reagan twice and still considers himself a staunch Republican. But now Phillips, the author of a new book called American Theocracy, is warning that the party of George Bush and Karl Rove ("W brand Republicans," in the phrase of GOP pollster Jan van Lohuizen) has become "God's own party" -- the champion of a convergence of "petroleum-defined national security; a crusading, simplistic Christianity; and a reckless credit-feeding financial complex." Phillips also cautions that the W-brand party's "sense of how to win elections comes out of a CIA manual, not out of the Declaration of Independence or the Constitution." [Phillips was also discussed here.]
posted by digaman on Apr 2, 2006 - 27 comments

Wilford Brimley

The oil in your oatmeal is just a bit of The Oil We Eat.
posted by stbalbach on Mar 27, 2006 - 28 comments

Black and viscous, bound to cure blue lethargy

US Army acknowledges "Peak Oil" - Jay Hanson has been beating the Peak Oil drum for years now. Well, "dieoff" scenarios aside, the US Army has now joined in : “The days of inexpensive, convenient, abundant energy sources are quickly drawing to a close". Indeed. "Mexico's giant Cantarell oilfield, which has financed government spending and held down U.S. gasoline prices for 20 years, is facing a production decline, a prospect that could heighten U.S. dependence on Middle East oil.". There's even a community discussion site on "Peak Oil"

Well, HELLO reality.
posted by troutfishing on Mar 25, 2006 - 76 comments

Congressional Oil spokesman goes after Citgo

Congressional Oil spokesman goes after Citgo. In Washington, Texas Republican Congressman Joe Barton (R-ExxonMobil) has launched an investigation into Citgo. But he is not investigating whether any of the oil giants are engaging in price gouging at a time when gasoline and heating oil casts are skyrocketing. Instead Barton has set his sights on the only oil company that actually dared to lower its prices last year - at least for the poorest Americans. Last week Barton demanded the Venezuelan-owned company Citgo produce all records, minutes, logs, e-mails and even desk calendars related to the company’s novel program of supplying discounted heating oil to low-income communities in the United States. The Citgo program, which began late last year in Massachusetts and the South Bronx, provides oil at discounts as high as 60% off market price.
posted by mountainmambo on Feb 26, 2006 - 88 comments

Burn, Onitsha, burn

The other religious riots. While much of the world's press has covered the Muslim cartoon riots, not nearly as much ink has been spilled over the continuing violence in Nigeria. A good analysis of underlying factors here. A Shell report points to oil as a proximate cause of violence as well. For oil companies, this may not be a bad thing. (If I was more interested in trolling, I'd have framed this as "Christian Leaders Fail to Condemn Religious Violence." The real world's a little more complex).
posted by klangklangston on Feb 23, 2006 - 15 comments

The State of Disunion

Zeitgeistfilter: Lumpen Leisure and Welcome to Middle-Class Lockdown... Now Shut Up and Buy Something -- two fine rants about our current state of disunion by James Howard Kuntsler, author of The Long Emergency (excerpt), and writer and Vietnam vet Joe Bageant. "All over but the keening for our soon-to-be-lost machine world," Kunstler predicts in The American Conservative, while Bageant taps the inner stream-of-unconsciousness for Dissident Voice: "Things cannot be as bad as the alarmists say. They cannot be as bad as I often suspect they are. If there really were such a thing as global warming they would be starting to do something about it. And besides, even if it were true, science will find a way to fix it. If there really were genocide going on in so many places far more people would be concerned... If the earth were heating up we would surely notice it. If our soldiers and government agencies were torturing people around the world it would make the news. If millions were being exterminated, it would be more obvious, would it not?" (Kunstler's book previously discussed here, Bageant here.)
posted by digaman on Feb 14, 2006 - 52 comments

magics for nothing, face it kid you're hooked

Sweden to break oil addiction? (BBC article): Released in a in a public statement the Swedish Minister for Sustainable Development (!), Mona Sahlin, sets forth the goal of a Sweden free from the dependence of oil by 2020. As this Altnews article says, this is essentially just a reaffirmation of a stated goal. Still 2020, is not far off.
posted by edgeways on Feb 8, 2006 - 45 comments

Oil Sucks

All Your Oil Are Belong To Us. Coming off of a recordbreaking profitable quarter, the good chaps at ExxonMobil laugh at your puny attempts to get off of oil.
posted by owillis on Feb 7, 2006 - 82 comments

They have no idea what an Arab is. . .

Seeing Only Evil: An Interview with Retired CIA Agent Robert Baer, Author of See No Evil: The True Story of a Ground Soldier in the CIA's War Against Terrorism.
posted by exlotuseater on Feb 5, 2006 - 21 comments

Yeah, that's the ticket!

One day after President Bush vowed to reduce America's dependence on Middle East oil by cutting imports from there 75 percent by 2025, his energy secretary and national economic adviser said Wednesday that the president didn't mean it literally.
posted by EarBucket on Feb 1, 2006 - 112 comments

Iran: “We Have The Oil, Go Fuck Yourself” America: “OK”

Iran may be trying to get nuclear weapons. In the process potentially starting a new war with Israel, fun times. America on the other hand isn't going to do all that much because Iran controls a large amount of the worlds oil, and with prices already high, they don't want to spark another oil crisis.
posted by stilgar on Jan 23, 2006 - 97 comments

Iraq - All oil, no gas.

Iraq - All oil, no gas. A consortium of 34 Turkish companies have joined together to stop all exports of petrol / refined oil products to Iraq, because Iraq's government owes them over $1 billion that they have so far been unable to pay. Iraq's largest refinery was forced to shut down in December, after its truck drivers walked off the job due to insurgent threats. They reopened ten days later, only to shut down again after an insurgent swarm attack killed and wounded more drivers. The refinery has once more ceased activity, as their reserves of refined fuel are full and there is no way to get them to their customers. Iraq's diesel-driven power plants are undersupplied too, leading to worsening outages.
posted by insomnia_lj on Jan 22, 2006 - 37 comments

Half Gone

As of today, world oil reserves are five percent lower than previously thought. Well informed early toppers like Jeremy Leggett (previously discussed here) won't be surprised by the news, though they may be disappointed that it didn't make bigger headlines.
posted by alms on Jan 20, 2006 - 42 comments

Dumping the SUV guilt!

The jolly green Hummer? The growing band of environmental offset companies which give you the chance to offload your SUV driving, energy squandering guilt onto an annual subscription and a fancy bumper sticker looks like one way that we'll be able to live with ourselves in the power hungry 21st century. Is this the placebo we've all been waiting for?
posted by Duug on Jan 13, 2006 - 20 comments

Fables of the reconstruction.

Fables of the reconstruction. The Bush administration does not intend to seek any further funding for Iraqi reconstruction, leaving only $3.5 billion left to spend out of the $18.4 billion the US budgeted. Approximately half of all reconstruction costs spent so far -- $7.5 billion -- have been eaten up by increased costs due to the insurgency. All remaining reconstruction costs will depend entirely upon foriegn contributions and Iraq's oil industry. But will foriegn aid come through if its too dangerous to work there? Can Iraq's oil industry pay for reconstruction when its output has been in a tailspin for well over a year, falling from 2.8 million barrels a day in May 2004, to 1.82 million barrels per day in January 2005, to 1.2 million barrels a day by November. and ending the year with a low of 1.1 million barrels a day in December? As for the Iraqi infrastructure left to be rebuilt, water and sanitation is still poor in most areas, and electricity production, which looked promising last summer after imports from Iran and Turkey, has deteriorated again, falling to only 3700 megawatts in November 2005, essentially at the same level produced in May 2004.
posted by insomnia_lj on Jan 2, 2006 - 26 comments

Blood Flows With Oil in Poor Nigerian Villages

Blood Flows With Oil in Poor Nigerian Villages An insightful NYT article on "the desperate struggle of impoverished communities to reap crumbs from the lavish banquet the oil boom has laid in this oil-rich yet grindingly poor corner of the globe" Ok, so the quotes a little heavy handed but the pic on the 2nd page speaks volumes.
posted by Mr Bluesky on Jan 1, 2006 - 24 comments

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