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Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Why Peak Oil may prove irrelevant (REDUX)

No. The US experience is vastly different than that of other nations owing to the ability of citizenry to own mineral rights, which has created a whole class of minor scale operators who have no analogue in any other producing nation.

Look at the EIA page for Distribution and Production of Oil and Gas Wells by State. 355,537 operating oil wells, 125,933 of which produce 0-1 boe/d. This is not a situation that obtains elsewhere. I've asked people with experience in the industry such as R Rapier or ROCKMAN if they thought NOCs could replicate this level of attention by opening up drilling rights to citizenry, and the answer was "damn unlikely," followed by "likely wouldn't make much difference."

The HL method seems to suggest overall world decline will be fairly gentle anyway, however. But we have a lot of very steep declines making their way into the equation, owing to the prevalence of deepwater in the last quarter of the 20th century, which could hasten the decline somewhat.

More pressing than that is how nations will react when peak oil registers as a fait accompli, which of course is wholly unmeasurable.
Where you measure the decline rate is of import as well:

Biggest Losers for 2008 from Stat Review:

Yemen -11.59%Chad -11.50%Italy -10.88%Brunei -10.00%Mexico -9.05%Tunisia -8.89%Other Africa -8.33%Nigeria -7.89%Denmark -7.72%European Union # -6.24%Vietnam -5.98%United Kingdom -5.76%Other Europe & Eurasia -5.18%Other Middle East -4.98%Syria -4.10%

Biggest Winners:

Other Asia Pacific 3.23%Brazil 3.48%Indonesia 3.48%Saudi Arabia 3.66%Turkmenistan 3.66%Oman 3.70%Total Middle East 3.94%Kazakhstan 4.54%Thailand 4.81%Azerbaijan 4.95%Peru 5.13%Kuwait 5.32%Angola 8.27%Colombia 9.21%Rep. of Congo (Brazzaville) 10.92%Iraq 11.52%Qatar 13.17%

Would be interesting to compare decline rate to overall production.Tex - US Production minus Alaska:Looks like a neolithic spear head.

That piddling little uptick in the 80s is what the greatest drilling campaign in history produced.

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