Fracking for Fun and Future: Pushing Back the Luddites

Fracking Gives the Advanced World Enough Time to Develop Clean, Safe, Abundant Nuclear Energy from New-Gen Reactors

Saudi Arabia, Russia, Venezuela, and a wide range of nations that fund their national budgets from oil & gas profits may be in huge trouble as a result of fracking. But advanced nations that take advantage of the boon in unconventional energy, will be given time to develop abundant forms of clean nuclear energy that can power humanity’s future for tens of thousands of years.

If the oil futures market is correct, Saudi Arabia will start running into trouble within two years. It will be in existential crisis by the end of the decade.

The contract price of US crude oil for delivery in December 2020 is currently $62.05, implying a drastic change in the economic landscape for the Middle East and the petro-rentier states. ___

Saudi Arabia has barely slowed fracking in North America with its risky gamble last year to hold down global oil prices. Now, it seems, the kingdom will pay the price.

Crude Oil Brent vs WTI Saudi Gambit

Crude Oil Brent vs WTI
Saudi Gambit

The Saudis gambled that the U.S. could not produce shale profitably at rates below $60-$70 a barrel. The kingdom’s assumption was that if prices were maintained at those levels, U.S. shale producers would shut down.

But the Saudis were wrong, Evans-Pritchard wrote. “If the aim was to choke the U.S. shale industry, the Saudis have misjudged badly, just as they misjudged the growing shale threat at every stage for eight years. ____ WorldTribune

It was not only the Saudis that misjudged US tight oil and fracking. It was the rest of OPEC, the Russians, and Brasil.

Al Fin has been warning the oil dictatorships about the “coming oil glut” for several years now, but they did not listen. Now, it seems, it is too late.

OPEC now faces a permanent headwind. Each rise in price will be capped by a surge in US output. The only constraint is the scale of US reserves that can be extracted at mid-cost, and these may be bigger than originally supposed, not to mention the parallel possibilities in Argentina and Australia, or the possibility for “clean fracking” in China as plasma pulse technology cuts water needs.

Mr Sheffield said the Permian Basin in Texas could alone produce 5-6m b/d in the long-term, more than Saudi Arabia’s giant Ghawar field, the biggest in the world.

Saudi Arabia is effectively beached. It relies on oil for 90pc of its budget revenues. There is no other industry to speak of, a full fifty years after the oil bonanza began. ___ Evans Pritchard

Fracking Business Source: Independent UK

Fracking Business
Source: Independent UK

Fracking is Big Business and Certain to Grow Bigger

Several countries besides the US and Canada are beginning to use fracking to reach new oil & gas resources:

Recent reports suggest that fracking is beginning to take hold in Mexico with numerous wells being drilled. Unsurprisingly given the state of oil prices and the resources Mexico has available, thus far the fracking appears concentrated on natural gas, rather than oil. The important point though is that the use of the technology on a broad scale suggests a new opportunity for investors.

… Local partners who understand the country and have political clout will be key to any investment projects. For that reason, major servicers like HAL and SLB are good choices. The firms will likely have significant opportunities to do work on behalf of Pemex, which in turn will keep them out of the local theatrics surrounding energy reform. __

Argentina is another Latin American country trying to build a fracking industry. China and Russia would also like to cash in on their frackable geo-assets, but lack the local expertise to do so.

And just when you thought that fracking couldn’t get any bigger in the US, along comes re-fracking. The payoff from fracking was originally rather dicey, until service companies developed all the right moves. The same will be true for the early stages of “re-fracking,” but the potential payouts for success are large.

Many People Would Like to Stop All Fracking Everywhere

Radical green faux environmentalists have been trying to stop fracking for a handful of years now — and some of them are on Putin’s payroll. They are nothing if not persistent, and as long as Obama is US President, they still have hope for success. But time is against these neo-Luddites and their dieoff orgy agenda.

Environmental groups used to call natural gas a “bridge fuel” away from coal to renewables. The Sierra Club was so enthusiastic that between 2007 and 2010, according to Time magazine, it accepted $25 million in funding from oil and gas interests to pay a small army of lawyers and lobbyists as part of its “Beyond Coal” campaign.

But a few years later, the environmental movement reversed its position. Recently, the National Resources Defense Council successfully lobbied for a ban on fracking — the practice of cracking open underground oil and gas formations with water, sand and chemicals — for natural gas in New York state. The Sierra Club abruptly ended its alliance with the industry and announced a “Beyond Natural Gas” campaign. A recent Gallup poll finds 40% of Americans support fracking, or hydraulic fracturing, and 40% oppose it, with environmentalists and Democrats most likely to oppose it.

What changed? Gas became cheap and abundant thanks to fracking. And where conventional natural gas production was historically centered in the oil patch, shale gas is often present in places such as upstate New York, where a lot more environmentalists live.

… Natural gas is so clean, many of us burn it in our kitchens without need for chimneys or vents. It emits practically no mercury and 17 to 40 times less sulfur dioxide, according to our study with Breakthrough Institute. As for water, simply switching electricity production from coal to natural gas saves 25 to 50 times more water.

… ___ Faux Environmentalist Campaign of Lies

Fearmongering about Fracking

More: Obama’s Most Recent Green Energy Lies

Not everyone appreciates the rabid anti-energy efforts of the faux environmental die-off.orgiasts. There even exists an organisation that keeps close track of anti-fracking efforts, perhaps to aid in an eventual “reckoning” against these faux environmental foes of mankind’s future.

“Fracking bans and prohibitive fracking regulations are a threat to this country’s economic recovery and superpower status,” said NCPA Executive Vice President and COO Jacki Pick. “Enhanced energy production through fracking can help the U.S. revive its economy with unprecedented growth, greatly reduce the national debt and trade deficit, and insure that we maintain our influence on the world stage.” __ Tracking the Anti-Frackers

And so the NCPA maintains an “anti-fracking map” which keeps track of legislation and regulations that seek to limit the beneficial technology of fracking.

And Now, a Word from Our Sponsors

During the first golden age of fracking in the US, boom towns such as Williston, N.D. grew rapidly to serve the surge of oil field workers and accessory industries. Had a person known that such a boom were going to occur, he might have bought up a large amount of real estate in Williston and other soon-to-be boom towns, and would have made a very healthy profit.

Interestingly, the current slowdown between the first golden age of fracking and the second golden age of fracking, provides many similar opportunities for the speculative investor. Remember, study the market well and invest wisely.

Brought to you by the Al Fin Investment Bank and Medley of Funds.

Low Oil Prices for Years More?

Oil futures contracts for 2020 are selling for $62 bbl, and many analysts project oil prices well below fiscal breakeven for Russia, KSA, Iran, Venezuela, etc. for several years to come.

Oil markets are bracing for long-term low prices

Saudi Arabia is losing its leadership in market share in Asia. In Japan, the United Arab Emirates overtook it as the lead exporter, and in May, its sales were second in both India and China.

“If I were they, I would feel anxious about a market share strategy that didn’t succeed. Their production policy is more opaque than it used to be,” Morse said. Saudi Arabia is now exporting a record 10.5 million barrels a day, and is also exporting more refined product from new refining capacity. ____

Nuclear energy, assuming breeder reactors, will last for several billion years, i.e. as long as the sun is in a state to support life on earth. _ Source

Oil & gas are plentiful, but they are not meant to provide the main supply of energy to advanced human societies indefinitely. Advanced nuclear energy can provide cheap, clean, abundant, and affordable power and heat for tens of thousands of years and more.

Energy Density Comparison from Wikipedia Fusion, Fission Orders of Magnitude Better than Chemical and Other Energy Sources

Energy Density Comparison from Wikipedia
Fusion, Fission Orders of Magnitude Better than Chemical and Other Energy Sources

Q. Is nuclear energy sustainable?

A. Yes. In the short term, probably the next hundred years, there is so much uranium that no-one can profitably prospect for more. In the medium term breeder reactors will extend the energy obtained per kilogram of uranium by a factor of about 100. In the very long term, Bernard Cohen has shown that plenty of uranium can be extracted from seawater for a few billion years. I suppose extraction of uranium from low grade ores is likely to be better than extracting it from seawater, but Cohen’s seawater argument provides a strong proof that uranium will remain available in the very long term. Here’s Cohen’s own web page.

John McCarthy

Nuclear fusion, of course, will supply plentiful energy — once perfected as a controllable power source — indefinitely.

Nuclear Energy is the Safest Form of Power

Humans have been slow to perfect clean, safe, cheap, and abundant nuclear fusion and nuclear fission reactors. But even with its current imperfections and hazards, nuclear energy has been shown to be the safest form of power generation of all current methods.

Gen IV reactors will be safer, more efficient, and often more scalable. They can be made compatible with large power grids, or with smaller microgrids. They will provide valuable process heat as well as abundant electrical power.

But next will come Gen V, Gen VI, Gen VII, etc. etc. — each generation meant to be safer, more affordable, cleaner, more scalable, and/or more efficient. And that is just for fission reactors. Once various types of controllable fusion are perfected, the stars will be the limit.

More: Without nuclear, the world will simply turn to more coal, with all the mercury and sulfur pollution that implies.

What the Luddites are doing to California . . . Will we have to exile all the Luddites to the Sahara desert?

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4 Responses to Fracking for Fun and Future: Pushing Back the Luddites

  1. Rollory says:

    If you’re going to talk about nuclear energy, you should talk about thorium, not uranium.

    • alfin2101 says:

      Eventually, that may be true. Certainly thorium deserves a chance to prove itself, being as abundant and fertile as it is. But thorium needs neutrons from somewhere.

  2. Matt Musson says:

    Gee, if I were Vlad Putin and was sitting on a huge reserve of Siberian oil maybe I would help Iran get nuclear weapons so the entire middle East could go up in flames. Then all my oil would increase in value.

    • alfin2101 says:

      I told Putin a number of years ago to pump as much oil as he could, because his time for sitting on a huge reserve of Siberian oil is ticking down. Unfortunately, Russia is technologically backward, and requires outside technology and expertise just to keep from falling further behind.

      So what is Putin doing about western sanctions that limit Russia’s access to advanced technologies? He is burning western cheese! What an idiot!

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