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Breaking: Major shale oil find in South Australia (geopolitical shift coming?)

This is Big. At its very least, they’re talking of 3.5 billion barrels of oil, which is a Very Nice Discovery, thank you. At its largest, they are saying 233 billion barrels — Saudi Arabia, here we come.

Near Coober Pedy, Linc Energy has confirmed the Arckaringa Basin has lots of shale oil, so much that it could possibly shift us back to being an oil exporter. (We were self sufficient until 2000, but our oil production has been declining since then.)

Any discovery that comes with discussions about “national energy security” is one worth paying attention to. The news stories are just hitting the net now. Linc Energy has rights over more than 65,000 square kilometres of land in the Arckaringa Basin.

Note that there are virtually no farms and very few people living in the area. The blue splotch around Coober Pedy on the map below is not a lake.

Smack in the middle of South Australia

Adelaide Now was one of the first.

SOUTH Australia is sitting on oil potentially worth more than $20 trillion, independent reports claim – enough to turn Australia into a self-sufficient fuel producer.

Brisbane company Linc Energy yesterday released two reports, based on drilling and seismic exploration, estimating the amount of oil in the as yet untapped Arckaringa Basin surrounding Coober Pedy ranging from 3.5 billion to 233 billion barrels of oil.

At the higher end, this would be “several times bigger than all of the oil in Australia”, Linc managing director Peter Bond said.

This has the potential to turn Australia from an oil importer to an oil exporter.

 

 ABC news

Chief executive Peter Bond says even if the amount of retrievable oil is well below that, the discovery is still “bigger than the Cooper Basin and Bass Strait combined”.

“If you stress test it right down and you only took the very sweetest spots in the absolute known areas and you do nothing else, it’s about 3.5 billion [barrels] and that’s sort of worse-case scenario,” he said.

“So if you took the 233 billion, well, you’re talking Saudi Arabia numbers. It’s massive, it’s just huge.

‘Remote and deep’

Shale oil is more costly to extract and more controversial than conventional crude and involves fracking, in which water is pumped in to break up the shale.

South Australian Mining Minister Tom Koutsantonis says it is much too early to say if the reserve can be profitably tapped.

“What they think they’ve found, or they have found, but whether it’s economic to recover or not is still the question, is vast reserves of shale oil,” he said.

“It’s basically oil which is trapped in low-permeability, clay-rich rocks so it’s within the rocks and you fracture-stimulate those rocks to release the oil.

Shale oil has transformed the energy market in the US. Is this the start of the Australian run?

Will it match the $20 Trillion potential?

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Rating: 9.1/10 (54 votes cast)
Breaking: Major shale oil find in South Australia (geopolitical shift coming?), 9.1 out of 10 based on 54 ratings

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196 comments to Breaking: Major shale oil find in South Australia (geopolitical shift coming?)

  • #
    Sonny

    “Peak Oil” – Yet another deliberate lie from the Greens.


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    • #
      Mattb

      Lol those Greens are pretty influential for a small bunch!


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      • #
        KinkyKeith

        Mattew,

        It’s not the Greens that are influential,

        it’s the Money that they want to Re-Direct to a worthy cause that is influential.

        It’s always the Money!

        KK


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      • #
        KinkyKeith

        Hi Peter

        A good outline; thanks.

        My concern with fracking is the same as the one I have for Nuclear Power generation.

        I know little about the CSG extraction and fracking but over time I have followed numerous, mishaps, internationally with nuclear power generation.

        I am all for Nuclear, technically I believe it is probably cleaner and safer than coal generation.

        There is however the main problem: People, or more specifically politicians, who may be encouraged to bend the rules a bit or extend the life of a facility past its’ engineering “use by” date and so take it into the red zone as has has happened far too many times in the past.

        As we have learned from the past it is not the technology that is the problem ; it is people, who have the capacity to waive specific safety conditions that should be written in stone but end up being written in sand.

        After the Global Warming scam anything can be expected of politicians regardless of the technical knowledge available or guarantees given.

        People cheat.

        KK :)


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    • #
      Dennis

      They read this headline and are plotting already how to kill this off


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      • #
        Rick Bradford

        Yes, I wonder what it will be:

        * suddenly discovered indigenous sacred sites
        * suddenly discovered world’s smallest centipede
        * threat to the habitat of bunyips

        Real hard-core Greens would rather gargle battery acid than allow people to enjoy cheap energy, doubly so if its origin is in Australia.


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    • #

      It is not that the Greens lie, they are just ignorant of what figures mean. They look at proven reserves. Yet these are always based upon what is known and can be economically extracted at existing technology. In the last few years there has been a huge advance in technology to extract oil from new formations and a larger proportion of the oil from known fields.


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  • #
    Water Wizard

    Tight oil. Needs fracking. 5 GL/hole. Minimum 500 holes to get started. 2,500GL. Can’t take that from the Ackaringa Basin. Can’t see anyone agreeing to seawater. No water, no oil.


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    • #
      KinkyKeith

      Hi W Wiz,

      Can you add a bit to that?

      KK


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    • #
      SA Beinke

      I have previously been a Slurry Operator (mixing fracturing gels)in the Cooper Basin for a well known international contractor, and I can assure you Water Wizard is way off the mark. Generally speaking a fracking job will use between 20,000 to 50,000 US gallons, sometimes a bit more, depending on well depth and fracture design, but definitely not 5 gigs. “Pin Point” fracturing (using coil tubing units) has revolutionized well stimulation and brought about outstanding results, hence the American revival in hydrocarbons. As for Water Wizards claim of tight oil requiring enormous amounts of water, are just plain ignorant, as the requirement for any tight well is horsepower of the pumps used in the fracturing process. Higher the pressures, the more horsepower required – not more water. As for salty water, they will do as what is done in the Cooper Basin, and use RO water (de-salinated), a cheap process in the scheme of things since there is plenty of hydrocarbons to generate the power for water treatment. As for the gels, the ingredients are found in your kitchen, and even the plain water fracs use friction reducers made of harmless surfactants and soaps.


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      • #
        SA Beinke

        I should have added that the only other product pumped into the fracture zone is either a carbo-ceramic and/or plain old sand (silica), both used as a proppant for the fracture, and of course are also harmless products.
        I might add it would be advisable to get a petro-engineer to post a little essay on Well Stimulation on this blog, just to ensure the facts are laid out clearly, to counter some of the more outlandish claims I have read here and on other sites, including the MSM.


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        • #
          Mark D.

          A nice little business can be made just providing the right sand. If anyone knows of a nearby pit, time to buy.

          My tip for the day.


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        • #
          KinkyKeith

          Interesting comments.

          So where dos that place Water Wizards comments and why are they off the mark?

          Was wickipedia used?

          KK :)


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        • #
          ianl8888


          I might add it would be advisable to get a petro-engineer to post a little essay on Well Stimulation

          Good idea, better if such information could be published in the MSM (no hope, I’m afraid)

          Sand, water and a common surfactant (soap, if you will) – the MSM always refer to these as chemicals (which they are, of course) with the implication of carcinogen-causing evil. This childish tactic works because the populace is generally ignorant of chemistry/geology/engineering and very easily scared

          Also important is the difference between Resource and Reserve. Linc are quoting early Resource numbers, which do not translate into 1:1 Reserve numbers (Linc know this and are not at fault, rather the SA Minister/politician is deliberately confusing the concepts). Resource is an estimate of what is in the ground, based on exploration data. Reserve is an estimate of what % of Resource may be extracted economically, ie. after engineering/cost/market factors are taken into account


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    • #
      Peter Miller

      Water is obviously going to pose a problem in this semi-arid part of South Australia. The huge aquifers (southern limits of the Great Australian Artesian Basin) would probably be the natural water source for this project if it proves viable.

      I think it is a case of “Needs must”.

      If sufficient oil and gas resources can be demonstrated, then it will not be a case of the gross amount of water required (in the USA it is usually 3-8 million US gallons per hole – 1.0 US gallon = 3.8 litres), but the net amount required. The need to recycle water is becoming increasingly apparent in the fracking industry. Although a figure of 100% recycling is unachievable, a figure of around 80-90% should be achievable, but this will require additional investment. In many ways, it can be construed as the typical socialist way of solving a problem: “Throw money at it.”

      We have to remember the actual fracking takes place in non-porous, impermeable rocks, so the loss of water underground should be minimal. When this water is recovered from underground it usually has to be treated to remove contaminants, such as salt and hydrocarbons. The treated water can then be re-used/recycled, but that brings up the question of evaporation if it is stored on surface. It may be simpler and more water efficient to pump the treated clean water back into the aquifer.

      The gross amount of water per fracking hole, as stated by Water Wizard, is incorrect, it is about 12-30 million litres, not 5 billion litres, so the figure he/she uses is overstated by a ‘significant’ factor of ~250. The USA drills about 35,000 fracking holes per year, which the EPA estimates consume around 400 billion litres of water. For the record, G means Giga, which is billion.


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      • #
        Rod Stuart

        That’s a good point for consideration. There is concern in the USA as to whether they have enough water to extract all that shale oil.
        I’ve been to Coober Pedy, and Moomba, and White Cliffs, and there is precious little water ’round there.


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        • #
          Mark D.

          But there’s those idled desal plants? Seems to me this is going to be fun! We can lower those “rising” sea levels by pulling more carbon out of the earth :)

          The Warmists will become apoplectic

          Too bad about your silly carbon tax though.


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      • #
        Redress

        IF water from the The Great Artesian Basin which is one of the largest underground water reservoirs in the world is used, then, if you thought the Murray Darling basin plan was a nightmare, the Great Artesian Basin fight will leave it for dead. The basin underlies approximately 22 per cent of Australia — occupying an area of over 1.7 million square kilometres beneath the arid and semi-arid parts of Queensland, New South Wales, South Australia and the Northern Territory.

        The Great Artesian Basin Coordinating Committee (GABCC) overseas the management of the Basin. Membership of the Committee comprises:
        all State, Territory and Australian Government agencies with responsibilities for management of parts of the Great Artesian Basin
        community representatives nominated by agencies
        sector representatives; and
        technical support.

        At present the GABCC seam to have an open mind, http://www.gabcc.org.au/public/content/ViewCategory.aspx?id=97, much like the Murray Darling Basin Committee had before it was restructured to be politically correct and with an environmental agenda.

        “Just you wait ‘enry ‘iggins, just you wait”.


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      • #
        Ian

        So in the space of a few posts we’re given two vastly differing accounts of the amount of water required for fracking. On the low side SA Beinke reckons 20K-50K US gallons per hole while Peter Miller reckons 3-8 million gallons per hole. Who is correct? I’ve absolutely no idea but with differences such as these the real value of this resource may also be very different from what is currently suggested.


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        • #
          SA Beinke

          Just a small correction, I never said 20k to 50k US gallons per hole, but per frac. Wells can have up to half a dozen or more zones to be fracked, whilst some wellbores will have less zones to treat. When “pin point” fracking with a coil tubing unit, the water usage is more in the lower range. Regardless of the numbers I am quoting it is still nowhere near the claims of 5 gigs per hole.


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      • #
        Crakar24

        Heres an idea Pete, why dont we combine two thoughts.

        We could pipe the water which usually flows out to sea from lake argyle down to the salt lakes then we could use this water to do the fracking. As a side effect we could use any excess water (which is measured in shit tins) and we could green the desert. We would have to build another storage facility as our old one Port Stanvac was bulldozed to make way for our mothballed desal plant………………..a loud thump can be heard in the far distance as the green collective collapse as one due to hyperventilation.


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    • #
      mc

      Water Wizard at#2

      Tight oil. Needs fracking. 5 GL/hole. Minimum 500 holes to get started. 2,500GL. Can’t take that from the Ackaringa Basin. Can’t see anyone agreeing to seawater. No water, no oil.

      W.W. you say 5 GL per hole,SA Beinke says 20,000 to 50,000 US gallons,per hole, i would be very interested to hear your explanation for that discrepancy. cheers.


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  • #
    Dave

    .
    Good news, even it is only 3 or 4 billion barrels, this size resource is rare.

    Now the SA govt may be able to afford the Adelaide Oval redevelopment, the desalination plant, and the new Royal Adelaide Hospital. Hopefully the RA Hospital 1st.


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  • #
    KinkyKeith

    That’s an awful lot of Carbon.

    Sorry CO2.

    Maybe Louis or someone else could comment on any geologic implications?

    Hope it works out.

    KK


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  • #
    AndyG55

    Amazing how we find this stuff .. right when we need it !! :-)


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    • #
      Dennis

      A relative, from Roma and Toowoomba Queensland, now deceased, used to talk abou capped oil wells that were not viable at the time, Commonwealth Oil Refineries, COR. In the early 1900s. We are treated like Mushrooms guys.


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  • #
    Kevin Lohse

    Who is going to be the first Oz Greenie to wave their arms about the earthquake hazard, the contaminated water hazard, the damage to aboriginal society hazard ? Any guesses? Maybe Jo could run a book?


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  • #
    Robbo

    I bet tomorrow morning we will learn that this oil site is also coincidentally the last habitat of the highly-endangered blue-spotted deaf lizard, and was used as a sacred walking route by local aboriginal elders 2000 years ago according to an anthropology professor from Monash university, so….


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    • #
      Dave

      .
      Robbo,
      Yup! It will be shut down and 500 renewable Green Friendly Windmills that supply 15 houses will be built on the nesting burrows of the Blue-spotted deaf lizard (which can’t here windmills) and the turbine concrete pads will aid the walking tracks on hots CO2 induced days.

      Tim Flannery & Bob Brown will open the new WINDMILL farm.


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    • #
      Byron

      Robbo
      As You can imagine We get that sort of thing A LOT in Tassie except in Our case it`s the hand painted spotfish or something like that . Highly endangered nowdays apparently , as You no longer find great wild herds of them roaming Salamanca Market , They were all melted down for penguin oil by the sealers on their whaling ships years ago ….or some such thing the Greens tell Us.

      But try and sink a single pylon to start a coastal development of some sort and BLAM , You`ll get six of `em in a hit ….. or so the Greens tell Us

      (for the benefit of warmists with atrophied humour syndrome the above comment is made tongue in cheek)


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  • #
    forester126

    Water wizard.
    A Canadian company has developed a method of fracking using liquid propane, this has the advantage of the fact that when it has fractured the rock it comes back to the surface as gas, just like the methane you are extracting.
    Sounds ideal for the Australian shale.


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  • #
    Peter Miller

    Shale oil and shale gas are going to change the world’s economy in ways we cannot yet understand. These sources of usable hydrocarbons are extremely abundant and we now have the technology to commercially recover both. It is a bit more expensive than conventional sources of oil and gas, but its potential resources are a significant multiple of the remaining conventional sources.

    So who doesn’t like it? You guessed it, the gullible and the ecoloons – the same gullible and ecoloons who believe in CAGW.

    So development of these resources will be delayed by unsubstantiated scare stories of the ‘dire’ consequences of fracking:

    1. “The surface and groundwater will be polluted.” If drilled correctly – a condition which will be strictly enforced – then this will never occur. The known instances of pollution from fracking are almost exclusively in areas where there is natural hydrocarbon pollution, or more rarely where someone has been stupidly allowed to frack a near surface deposit of less than 1,000 metres depth.

    2. “Fracking will cause major seismic events.” Complete BS. Fracking may cause minor seismic events, almost exclusively less than 2.5 on the Richter Scale and mostly would not be noticed. Fracking can occasionally cause existing stresses along minor fault planes to be released, no worse than those felt in any area of underground mining, where people happily live today. Anyhow, it makes simple common sense not to allow fracking in built up urban areas, or near a major seismically active fault – I guess that removes less than 5% of the potential fracking targets.

    3. “Fracking using poisonous chemicals.” Fracking uses mainly two chemicals: water and silica (to be more precise sand and grit size particles of silicon dioxide). Other minor chemicals are used, but these are recycled, as is the water used to frack the rock

    4. “This will increase CO2 output and bring Thermageddon closer!” There are still some that think wind power makes sense; I suppose it does if you like ridiculously expensive and unreliable electricity produced by eye-polluting structures. A source of relatively cheap and reliable energy, and no longer having to rely on the goodwill of those that live in the lands of sand and the camel, simply cannot be construed as being a bad thing by anyone, with the obvious exception of the CAGW-believing gullible and ecoloons.

    Most countries’ land surfaces are underlain by between 20% and 50% of oil and gas bearing shales, often hundreds (sometimes thousands) of metres thick. The concentrations of these hydrocarbons obviously varies and as recoveries are relatively low using present day technology, ‘grade’ will be a big consideration.

    As fracking makes such obvious economic sense, it is no surprise to see the parties of the left and environmental activist organisations all howling about its supposed dangers. The latter have made a mint out of ‘global warming’; this fad is starting to fade, so now it is the turn of fracking.


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  • #
    MadJak

    Seriously, this is just the start.

    I was reading some very well researched material a couple of years ago.

    Australia was even back then being tipped as being the next Saudi Arabia. They’re not exagerating.

    There are many other locations around the world with massive reserves of shale oil as well.

    Peak oil was hallways for the loons. This is just the start baby.


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    • #
      Dennis

      Why the green movement is so anxious to create world heritage national parks, to deny access to the oil and gas reserves.


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      • #
        Crakar24

        Not here Dennis the place is smack bang in the middle of the Woomera Rocket Range, the greens dont have a leg to stand on, if they stop them from drilling for oil then we cant drop our bombs and that aint gonna happen the greens race is run.


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  • #
    Water Wizard

    The Arckaringa basin region has bore holes above it into the GAB. So there are plenty of users. 2,500GL is a lot of water. Compared that to Prominent Hill (Oz Minerals) at 10 GL/year. They could access salty water at 360m from the Boorthanna aquifer but it is way too small to supply 2,500GL. Then there’s the problem of keeping all the aquifers separate.

    The oil would have derived from a dolomite that was scoured by glacial activity. Oil flowed into the glacial troughs and was covered by finely crushed rock (clay) which became a shale.

    The other problem is that if you inject highly saline water anywhere near a fault line above bedrock covered by shale you can expect slippage, eg an earthquake. The salt would allow the shale to slip under pressure. The last biggest was 6.1 in the Musgraves this translates to 3.x movement on the surface at Roxby. This may cause aquifers of different ages and salinity to mix.


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    • #
      Kevin Lohse

      What are the known solutions to these problems?


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      • #
        Water Wizard

        Lowest cost solution is to pipe freshwater from seeps offshore in the Great Australian Bight. Plenty of water there, trapped glacial melts and head mainland. About 200 GL/year would do wonders for the Coober Pedy region. Might even start a new Broken Hill.

        Another solution is to pipe water from Irian Jaya and create another MDB. About 10,000GL/year would do it. All via gravity.

        Same goes for the Pieman River outflow ex-Tasmania. Say 1,500 GL/year.


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          Harry

          Sure you are not serious? Pipe water to Coober Pedy from Tasmania or Irian Jaya?

          Look at a map, thats a rather large water pipeline.


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        • #
          Water Wizard

          A fabric pipe of 6m in diameter will make it from the Pieman to the Bight. Same goes for the trip from Irian Jaya to the Flinders River. The latest polymer fabrics can take 200m of pressure on a 6m diameter. They are far stronger than steel and easier to lay. They float off the bottom as fresh water weighs less than salt water. So the “pipe” can hang off the bottom or you can weigh it down with a sand slurry channel attached or just feed it along a wire and anchor the wire. The head required on a 6m pipe to flow 500GL/year is very low.


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          • #
            Crakar24

            No all you need to do is pipe water from Lake Argyle down to the very, very large salt lakes in the area and you will have more water than you could possibly dream of. The plus side is that you can green the desert (yes that noise you can here are all the greenies gnashing their teeth). You could transforn in land Australia……………its called progress something they do in most countries around the world on a dailly basis.


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            shauno

            Pumping it to the salt lakes isn’t a very good idea as the evaporation rates are huge you would loose a great deal to evaporation in my opinion.


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          • #
            Water Wizard

            Piping it to a salt lake is a silly idea. It would just evaporate. That is why you would need 10,000GL/year from Irian Jaya. You would really be better of using this water on the Barkly Tableland.

            The best source of water is from the Pieman River (Average outflow 4,000 GL/year) in Tasmania. Diversions of 1,500 GL/year is possible to Whyalla. A fabric pipe can then be placed N-S across Lake Torrens with minimal pumping as the lake is 30m AHD. Dams can be located in the Flinders Ranges and aquifers can also be used as reservoirs. Energy to maintain water pressure can come from freshwater seeps along the SA coast. So no pumping is required to get the flow to the north end of Lake Torrens.

            Where water is stored is the more interesting problem. The pipe itself holds a bit (37 GL to Whyalla, 5GL to Andamooka). The existing inhabitants will be have very large tanks and connecting them all to a water grid my be possible. It may be better to build some deep storage in the Flinders Ranges. Equally a buffer can be held under the ocean in an 11m pipe, say 19GL. At depth their would be enough force on the freshwater in the pipe to keep the pipe pressured to Andamooka. This means diverting the water from Lake Pieman by syphon.

            So no pumping to the northern end of Lake Torrens. Cost all up under $2B. Net flow to SA 1,500GL/year.


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    • #
      Hector Pascal

      “if you inject highly saline water anywhere near a fault line above bedrock covered by shale you can expect slippage, eg an earthquake.”

      Total borrox. Earthquakes are the release of strain. If there’s no strain, then regardless of the presence (or not) of faults, there won’t be any earthquake. Australia is aseismic. It’s another green herring.


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      • #
        MadJak

        Dennis,

        Totally agree,

        The forces involved which build for earthquakes are so massive that anything we do along the lines of fracking isn’t going to make a lick of difference.

        And even if it did(which it does not), it would be an excellent thing – after all, you are much better off having many small quakes than a big one later on.


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      • #
        KinkyKeith

        Thanks for that Hector, starting to sift the wheat from the chaff

        It seems there is always someone trying to pull the wool over; for the usual reasons.

        KK :)


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      • #
        Water Wizard

        In this area there is strain and regular earthquakes are already occurring. So the force to cause the slippage is already there. It would not be a great experience to be underground or down a deep pit in a 6.x earthquake.


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    • #
      Ian H

      Your figures of the amount of water required are ridiculous. To frack a well takes a couple of tankerloads of water – of about as much as you would need to fill a large swimming pool. Where do you get off on this Gl malarkey.


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      • #
        Water Wizard

        Wrong. The fracking volumes from the drillers are for just one frack. A hole can have large numbers of horizontals at varying depths and need to be fracked multiple times. Some holes will leak. What is important is how much water is going to be used over the life of a hole?


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  • #

    Labour and the Greens need to be squarely booted out of power before they tax it to the max. $20 trillion is a lot of money to hand around to your favorite NGO’s and Interest Groups.

    That sort of money if spent the right way could mean a dramatic shift in the well being of all Australians.

    Hell, you could change the world for the better with all the research and tech that could spring forth from it – but only if it was spent properly.


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      Dennis

      Booted out of power and locked out of power for ever more. They have set the world back and have cost us so much money, idiots, socialist fiscal fools.


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      Harry

      A nice national wealth fund (as done in Norway) to change the economy, encourage education and high technology. Now that’d be nice.

      And a pot of dosh sitting there to fund govt from recurring earnings with less taxation. Now that’d be nice too.

      Easily funded with existing royalty arrangements at about 2% – 3% as is paid at Roxby, or similar. Or the existing Petroleum rent taxes. No need for any new taxes there.

      In wonder if our glorious pollies are smart enough to have any foresight at all on this, or if they’ll just try and stick their hands in a grab what they can. Oh… silly me.


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    Dennis

    Do we really want to become Tastrailia? Go to Tassie, take a look, ask the locals about green madness and Labor being influenced by green madness. Seriously, I have been there by ship with a vehicle on board and I love the island Tassie. But check the facts with locals, a green economic wilderness. so if the Greens succeeded on the mainland who would we look to for welfare support?


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      DavidH

      Yet they keep voting the Greens back in. You must have only met the sane Tasmanians.


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        Rod Stuart

        We’ll boot those bas***ds out the next time ’round. Just wait ans see!


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        Byron

        A thumbnail sketch of Tassie politics:

        Most Tasmanians voted liberal last election , over the 51% mark but due to the way the electorates are arranged they were a seat or two from forming a majority government .As The Tasmanian liberals have a long standing policy of treating the greens with the contempt they deserve the governor general “ordered” Labor to form a minority government with the greens .

        As expected what we got was a Green government with it`s hand firmly up the Labor glove puppet . In the end , the 87%+ ( or something like that number ) of the population that didn`t want a green government inflicted on it had all their votes cancelled out by the one vote of the Tasmanian Governor General and the Labor party`s willingness to spread their buttcheeks every time the greens blow them a kiss .


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    Go you good things!. I am really happy for you. What will Julia say!. All that luvverly lolly and potential election bribes. Always getting herself in knicker twisting knots and all. The spin doctors will have to work overtime. I’m one of those strange people who believe that the left are far more fixated with the dollar than the right is. To them it’s like a drug that they’ll publically denounce but are privately addicted to and are obsessed with. To them the idea that the pie could suddenly grow by trillions of dollars would be principle changing stuff. Beware though the multitudes of unwashed, boiler suited hippies descending on every drill site armed with chains and bucketloads of self righteous indignation to stop progress.


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    Otter

    Frack, Baby, Frack!


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    I’m pleased for Australia. However, Peak Oil is primarily a question of economics not environmental science. Shale oil needs lots of energy to be expended to recover it. Anyone quoting the eco lobby needs to brush up on their petroleum geology and mineral extraction engineering.


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    Geo

    Hmm lets not get too excited

    The Arckaringa has been examined for conventional petroleum and also for CSG. For CSG it was assessed that the rank (ie effect of temperature and pressure from burial) of the coals was too low to generate sufficient gas. For conventional petroleum few had confidence in the chain of source-maturation-migration etc.

    Its possible that some of the pre Permian sections have the right characteristics but its still early days and there is a long long check list that costs oodles and oodles of money in testing before you even get close to the eureka moment. In this case probably > $50 million might tell you there is light at the end of the tunnel

    Before somebody orders some more tunnel


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    Water Wizard

    Plenty of solutions to get water. It can be piped from the north or south.

    Its a tight shale so its 5GL/hole over the life of the hole. Fracking has been going on for over 100 years. Adding some water into an existing oil hole is not a major frack. Using a gel instead of water is going to require lots of gel. You need to frack it more than once or the flow will quickly abate, so the idea of removing the water and reusing it needs a 5GL hole in the ground covered with polymer sheet next to the hole. The idea of treating the water is filled with difficulty. What if there is arsenic down there? It is one of the largest copper belts in the world. Hope its all oxide. What about the benzene from the coal deposits in the basin? lets not use that bit.

    Its better to bring in freshwater from somewhere else and leave it down hole. This is possible. It also opens up possibilities for all the other mining processes and agricultural users.


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    Geoff Sherrington

    Water can also be gained by putting a plastic sheet with a stone in it over a bundle of leaves harvested to prevent bushfires.

    Look, from what we are told, it’s early days. The reports of sub-grade coal, old capped wells, recent shale gas all allow the exciting prospect of a rather significant find. In industry words, you find elephants in elephant country.

    I’d take out some shares and relax. We have found in the past that the greed of politicians for a free royalty/tax cut overcomes ideology if the project is big enough to sell to voters. Wait a while & watch developments, especially independent confirmation.


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      Water Wizard

      Do a BHP and try and get the State to pay for the water and the power. Then pull the plug when the chemistry is found wanting, eg it matches what Western Mining found when they looked at it. Then suggest to shareholders that its better to leach it all. Meanwhile keep using all that water for as long as they let you. Meanwhile leave the $3T of rare earths in the ground because you have no idea what to do with acid and thorium.

      The Arckaringa Basin is a known tight oil shale its not new news. Linc probably need funding for more wells to frack in Texas. They need to keep that 6,000 BPD going. That means more acreage. Most of the supposed US fracking is down existing holes.


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        Wendy

        you are incorrect, Waterwizard. Most of the fracing in the US is in brand new drilling.
        I work for a company doing new wells in Ohio in the Utica Shale. I can assure you that each well we plan to frac will be ones we’ve permitted and drilled ourselves.
        On a side note, the industry is now testing the viability of re-fracing wells. So far the results are very good.


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          Water Wizard

          Have to be new wells in Ohio. Try looking at Texas and Oaklahoma. Refracing has been done and redone.


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          • #
            Water Wizard

            Besides its 3,800m down.


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            Wendy

            You mean Texas in the Barnett Shale? Maybe the Eagleford Shale? Oklahoma (spelled correctly) in the Woodford Shale? Care to try for some other areas? These are all NEW WELLS.
            Shale Gas wells completed in US after Jan 1 2012 – 1481
            Tight Gas wells completed in US after Jan 1 2012 – 2028
            Tight Oil wells completed in US after Jan 1 2012 – 3369

            Tight Oil wells spud in US after Jan 1 2012 – 4054
            Tight Gas wells spud in US after Jan 1 2012 – 2312

            Eagleford wells spud in US after Jan 1 2012 – 3866
            Eagleford depth between 10,000-20,000 feet total depth (not TVD). Most of these wells will have a horizontal section of about 6,000-8,000 feet.


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            Water Wizard

            Everything old is new again.

            Fracking tight gas and horizontal drilling is relatively new. Pressuring existing oil holes to get more flow is relatively old. Perhaps you can enlighten us about what happens to the water used down hole in Ohio, how much is required over the life of a hole, how many times each horizontal is fracked.

            Listing a few thousand holes sounds like one CSG field in oz. Hate to think how many holes there are in Texas and the Oak.


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            Wendy

            This has nothing to do with secondary or tertiary recovery projects.
            In Ohio and elsewhere the water is either disposed of in injection wells or recycled and reused.
            To date, the majority of horizontal tight gas/oil wells have only been fracced once.
            As far as the amount of water required per well….how long is a piece of string?

            Texas – over 1 million wells
            Oklahoma – over 500,000 wells
            Pennsylvania – almost 200,000 wells
            Ohio – over 200,000 wells

            We’ve been at this for a while. :D


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          • #
            Water Wizard

            Yes fracking is not new, only the fuss about it to extract more money from tax payers, central bank printers and oil & gas companies is new. Extracting money from oil & gas for environmental issues is not new. Lawyers are trying it on on Chesapeake Energy on several fronts. In the end everyone gets in their cars, heat their homes and use electricity generated at the local GE Gas Turbine. GE certainly have a few orders for that new variable speed turbine. Hope they can deliver.

            Getting back to the initial subject, the Linc announcement and media beat up put a missile under their share price. Not sure this is going to make BHP front with another $24B though. There is only one Kloppers moment in the life of PetroHawk.

            It will cost Linc $300M to get to a proven reserve worth production.

            So they better get to 20,000 bpd in Texas, 6,000 in no where near enough. Or perhaps its all about those juicy options they can now offer JPM and MS based on a $3 share price.


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      Roy Hogue

      I’d take out some shares and relax. We have found in the past that the greed of politicians for a free royalty/tax cut overcomes ideology if the project is big enough to sell to voters. Wait a while & watch developments, especially independent confirmation.

      Good advice!


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    Sonny

    Well, given what a major problem global warming and climate change is (cracks up laughing for 10 minutes) isn’t the safest thing to do to dig this stuff up and sell it to China as has been the approach for our dirty brown coal? (cracks up laughing for 20 minutes)

    Lmao at all the deluded alarmists who buy into our governments bullshit “GREEN ENERGY FUTURE”.


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    • #
      Speedy

      Sonny

      Why is it that the same people who talk about preserving the environment for future generations (etc) are the same jokers racking up government deficits like there’s no tomorrow? Presumably to be paid off or similarly inflicted on the same “future generations”? Do they really care about them? Or is it just another piece of disposable rhetoric to paper up the cracks in their logic?

      Just wondering.

      Cheers,

      Speedy


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      • #
        Sonny

        Speedy,

        That’s because they are using a very obvious propaganda tactic – appeal to the future unborn.

        Their hypocrisy knows no bounds. Especially considering it is the EnvironMENTAL Greens who

        want to see the population reduced to “sustainable” levels. Unfortunately, this is a belief foisted

        upon us by the “powers that be” because it is easier to rule over fewer people.

        When they talk about “our children and our children’s children”, they speak exclusively of their

        children and their children’s children. The Eugenics movement never died, it just evolved into a

        a far more insidious form.


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    jefftfred

    Water may be a problem, in more than one way. But has anyone taken notice of the Canadian company Gasfrac ?
    Using liquid propane, a gelling agent and a ceramic or sand proppant, achieves the same result – fracturing of the shale, opening up the fractures and keeping the fractures open with the proppant.
    After the fracturing the gas is recoverable for reuse or sale.
    Results in a lesser requirement of flaring to clean up the gas, and is in production sooner.
    Just Google Gasfrac, to see their financials and projects.


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    DougS

    Don’t dig it up it’s the work of the devil!

    It’ll pollute the water supply, cause massive earthquakes kill lots of loveable, small furry creatures.

    Just preparing you for the green eco-loon onslaught!


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    Tim

    I can see the greens petition now: ‘Stop shale mining at Oodnadatta – save the hairy-assed tree bunyip!’


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      Dave

      .
      Tim,

      The correct genus & species name for the hairy-assed tree bunyip is:

      Greensneedus Moremoneyi sub species liarextensivelyus

      Very dangerous beast and costs billions to protect from large fracking things.


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    Mattb

    Since peak oil is no more (and I do believe this since the US shale oil boom) it is a good time to wheel out the old chestnut.

    The Stone Age didn’t end because we ran out of stones:)


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      Sonny

      Matt B I’ll save you some time and predict that this is what you will write in ten years:

      “Since Global Warming is no more (and I do believe this since the globe has been cooling for 25 years) it is a good time to wheel out the old chestnut.

      “The Ice Age didn’t end because we ran out of ice”.

      I’m no sure what I just wrote is that funny.


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      Roy Hogue

      Hmmm…

      Maybe Matt’s stone age hasn’t ended yet.

      Just suspicious, that’s all.


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    janama

    I gather this movie is getting great reviews. It contradicts all the propaganda regarding fracking and was made by the same team that bought you the “Not Evil Just Wrong” doco about the global warming fraud.

    http://fracknation.com/

    They are also on Facebook

    https://www.facebook.com/FrackNation

    it’s interesting to read the posts by wives whose husbands work in the fracking industry and have done so for many years.


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  • #
    janama

    It’s pro facking Matt.


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    For the life of me, I just don’t get it.

    Huge deposits of Iron Ore.

    Huge deposits of probably some of the finest and most sought after Coal.

    Huge deposits of Uranium.

    Huge deposits of Natural Gas.

    Now this huge deposit.

    Yet, the only huge that is hyped to the max …..

    Huge potential from the Sun.

    Tony.


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      Mattb

      If only we had enough people to dig it out of the ground without absurdly high labour costs.


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        Mark D.

        That can be arranged. It isn’t always popular though.


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      • #

        This is about shale oil Mattb. Like conventional oil it consists of drilling into the ground. Tony also mentions natural gas (it is drilled) and iron ore which is open cast mining. The Hope Downs mine, for instance, has some of the most massive pieces of mining equipment in the world.


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        Crakar24

        Well MattB my son begins his mechanical engineering degree in a few weeks about 500K’s down the road from the oil so i guess in 4 years time when he graduates he could be part of that labor force. Of course if you and your green looney friends get their way he could always use the certificate as toilet paper.


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          Mattb

          will be interesting to see how his paternally brainwashed mind copes with university.


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            Crakar24

            You know you are right MattB, if he were your son he would not aspire to anything. I am sure your son has no inspiration at all and can you blame him? In his mind he only has a few years to live before AGW is gunna git him so why bother. I am sure your son (if you have one) is a bum a complete failure at life, racked with depression just sitting around waiting for the end of days.

            Fortunately for my son i sent him to a private school so he has not had to endure the indoctrination that you and your (possible) son has had to go through, he does not believe in a higher being, he does not believe in AIT, he believes all greenies are useless pricks.

            That should stand him in good stead when i meets arseholes like yourself in the future. His year 12 education is enough to run rings around you and blow holes in the fallacy of AGW, he has no desire to live like a hippy with perpetual bark burn.

            He has drive, he has confidence, he has goals unlike you and your pathetic useless family of no hoping bums that would prefer to suck on the teat of welfare while daddy attends council meetings.

            what a fuckwit


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            Len

            He should do okay because he is studying mechanical engineering, not environmental engineering.


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            crakar24

            Matt i am not sure what your problem is you are the most rude and obnoxious person i have ever met which is why i treat you with disdain. Having a go at me is apparently not enough you now feel the need to denigrate my son so what is your problem Matt.

            I suspect something tragic has happened in your life that has caused you to be so bitter and twisted that even seeing others have success leaves you with heart ache and pain so what is it Matt? Did the wife leave you? Did she shack up with your best mate? or worse her best mate? Did she take the kids and leave you penny less? Or is it something more personal did you have delusions of grandeur did you want to be someone important in life did you think you shuld have been some big shot pollie but the best you could do was get a gig on the local council?

            Thats what it is Matt, your jealous, too stupid to make the cut a born loser who could not get a root in a brothel with a fist full of fifties, now you are just a fat bald middle aged loser still living at home with the parents.

            [snip]


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            Bite Back

            MattB,

            You stick at absolutely no offense, do you?

            will be interesting to see how his paternally brainwashed mind copes with university.

            Anyone commenting is obviously fair game if that’s what you want to do. But their family members are not.


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        Kevin Moore

        Give everyone who aspires to be a politician a shovel. Make them work till they are too tired to think of ways to make other peoples lives a misery. What do you reckon Mattb?


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        Mattb

        From the thumbs down I assume posters don’t agree that we have a skilled labour shortage in Australia?


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      KinkyKeith

      Hi Tony

      Your list of assets is inspiring and has cheered me up.

      Why all of this stuff is still on the Too Hard list is a reflection on our National Politics.

      If Australia was a human being it would be diagnosed as being a person with Chronic Depression and Anxiety arising from internal conflicts over the Morality of mining when all the rest of the world IS going hell for leather mining the same materials.

      Australia needs a giant mental Enema or a good dose of Salts to help clear its collective mind and set us straight.

      KK :)


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      • #
        Bite Back

        KK,

        I just can’t resist asking, where would you stick in the hose? :-)


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          KinkyKeith

          Hi Bite Back

          An interesting question which immediately takes you to facial orifices like ears, nose and throat.

          But being a metaphor, it was trying to get a mental realignment equivalent to an enema, but then you knew that.

          A mental enema might be something like:

          1. maybe: Algore has night sweats and confesses publicly on the doorstep of UEA that he was wrong about Global Warming and announces that in a fit of guilt, Pachauri has resigned from the IPCCC , which has been disbanded, and gone to live as a hermit in West Baluchistan ; and then he donates all his money gained from the scam, to charity to repair the damage.

          2. Flannery, Will Steffen, Garnauti together assemble with 50 other Australian Climate Luminaries and confess it was all a big mistake and ask for forgiveness of the Australian taxpayers whose money they have caused to be “re-directed”.

          I think anything like the above would cause mental turmoil in the Green Warming Community and give the “mental enema”.

          KK :)


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    • #
      ExWarmist

      Also lots of Gold & Thorium.


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      Geoff Sherrington

      Tony,
      The worm has turned since the 1788 era. These days we have more up our selves than GB.
      Would it be justified to round up our criminal class and deport them to Portsmouth, where they can be engaged in making road metal from larger rocks, while living in the hulks of old ships?


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    Cookster

    This is great news but I fear the ruling classes in Australia will also love this news. Another potential goose laying golden eggs to fund further new ‘essential’ bureaucratic positions in Canberra. That is what occurred with the recent China driven demand for Australian Iron Ore, Coal and natural gas and will be no different with a boom in exploitable shale oil reserves (at least with our current elected government).

    The challenge for Australia will be to not waste this opportunity but to grasp and maximise it for the benefit of the whole country. Unfortunately as seen in Europe and more recently USA and Australia, growing the bureaucracy rarely benefits anybody but the employees and families of the bureaucracy itself. The rest of the economy gets burdened with rising taxes and red tape to help ‘save us from ourselves’ or to artificially redistribute the benefits of the boom to the (preferred) voting public.


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    old44

    $20 trillion dollars! can you imagine just how many school halls that will build.


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    Kevin Moore

    Cui bono? The owners of our national debt?


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  • #

    When and how quickly this shale oil comes onstream depends on a number of factors. It all revolves the projected returns. The initial investment will be large, particularly as there is no pipeline out of the Arckaringa Basin at present. The returns are determined by
    1. The initial investment. This will be large, particularly as there is no pipeline out of the Arckaringa Basin at present and no other services in the area. This is where Texas has an advantage.
    2. The quantity of oil that can be pumped. There needs to be a largish volume to justify the outlay.
    3. The cost per well. The deeper and smaller the deposits, the higher the cost per barrel.
    4. The time period to bring this onstream. In the North-West of England shale gas has delayed unnecessarily whilst the Government was persuaded to listen to economic sense instead of opposition from both the existing gas producers and the anti-prosperity green lobby. In the real world people discount future costs and revenues. Delays of years can make business ventures non-viable.
    5. The biggest element is the expected global oil price when this oil starts flowing. Oil production is expected to rise globally in the next few years, as new sources are brought to market, whether the US, Canada, Brasil, or Norway. Even Ireland could become a net exporter of oil in the next few years, with a find of 0.5bn barrels announced today in the Irish Sea, following a find of 0.8bn barrels announced last November off the Southern Irish Coast.

    The technical factors are merely another element in the cost equation.


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  • #
    Warwick Hughes

    I missed LNC booming since 8 Jan – surprised such a big stock added almost half a $Bn market cap like lightning. OK they ann on 8th passing the 6000 barrels oil per day production milestone – but surely it was known by the savvy they were closing on that ? Yet that announcement took the LNC market capitalization from $672mill to $1118mill.
    Then on 23 Jan they ann these colossal shale oil/gas potential numbers for northern Sth Aust. Not not a cupful of oil yet and their market cap spiked yesterday to $1382mill.
    The two recent reports by the LNC oil experts are based on tests etc ex drilling reported Sep 2011 -
    http://www.upstreamonline.com/live/article280154.ece
    and Dec 2011 -
    http://www.lincenergy.com/investor_linc.php?articleId=85
    LNC ended 2011 with a market cap under $600mill

    Contrast this with aussie oil explorer Austin Exploration AKK who announced on 21 Jan a shale oil/gas strike in a hitherto unfashionable area of the Niobrara Formation, Colorado – what looks to my mug eyes like a brilliant exploration play – where oil is actually flowing to surface under its own pressure – and the AKK market cap is a tiddler $39mill.
    http://www.asx.com.au/asx/research/companyInfo.do?by=asxCode&asxCode=AKK
    Would really appreciate some oil & gas experts putting this into perspective.


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    • #
      Water Wizard

      Its the bankers and options for those bankers at work here. AKK need to get some bankers on the drip. Helps if you are in the ASX 200. This gives the bankers access to other peoples super at 20% of their portfolios. Small caps have limits.


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    crosspatch

    In the US we have gone back into the Texas oil fields and are now using the fracking technology to get at the “source” rock that underlies the pooled deposits of oil that we had pumped out in the past. Basically there is a layer of “source” shale. The oil migrates upward until it comes to an impermeable layer of rock and pools under that layer. We have pumped all of that oil out, but now we are able to go deeper into the “source” rock and extract more oil from there using the new tech. Australia might find some oil under their older played out fields, too.


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    • #
      Water Wizard

      The best source rock for oil is a dolomite. There is still plenty to discover. There is a huge deposit south of India, another one on the WA/SA border, no-one has sunk a hole there. The glaciers that carved them up and deposited silt that formed these shales is going to be expensive to frac and extract.

      There is still plenty of oil left.


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      • #
        Wendy

        Dolomite is a carbonate and is not a source rock. Source rocks are organic rich beds. Dolomites can be a great reservoir rock tho.


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          Water Wizard

          Now we are getting to an interesting conversation. The layer of organics mixed with limestone has certain bacteria that changes the limestone into a dolomite. Oil is made here. Find the dolomites where this has happened and you will find light crude. Satellites can be used to find the locations of these dolomites.

          Hot made dolomites have been made in the lab. Cold made dolomite which is most of the world’s deposits have not.


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            Wendy

            it is impossible for a dolomite to generate oil. CaMg(CO3)2 There are no carbons there to make up a hydrocarbon chain!
            The organics are what generates oil. The oil is then trapped in the dolomite.


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            Water Wizard

            Its the bacteria that makes the oil. The bacteria needs the limestone. The dolomite comes out in solution.


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          • #
            Kevin Moore

            What? No dinosaurs buried miles underground?


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            Water Wizard

            Dinos came later. They needed the bacteria too. No bacteria no dinos.


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            Crakar24

            I find it hard (very) hard to believe that all the oil in the world came from dead dinosours, is it possible oil comes from deep within the earths crust just like diamonds etc.


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            Mattb

            well noone says they come from dead dinosaurs.


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          • #
            Wendy

            it doesn’t come from dead dinos (or limestone). Try lots of dead leaves, etc.


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            Kevin Moore

            Mattb,

            What is it that they say?


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            Mattb

            THey say Doo doo doo doo doo doo doo doo doo


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            Water Wizard

            It certainly came from dead plant matter. Not sure that is disputed. The issue is what happened next. So the plant matter breaks down and the limestone goes into solution. The limestone precipitates as dolomite crystals. These crystals trap the oil and water as they form a porous structure. Bending them would allow the holes to join up and the structure becomes permeable. Equally a glacier could scour a long trough through the sediment as seen in the Arckaringa Basin.

            The issue is whether the humic acids and methane formed in the silts needed a neutral pH to form light crude. It would get too acidic for bacteria in just trapped dead plant matter. The bacteria that did this has not yet been identified but must have been very widespread and may still be alive in the dolomites. If you can figure out this process it may be commercially viable to make light crude. It would certainly lead to the assessment of viable oil fields and possible locations for new ones.


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            Mattb

            “It certainly came from dead plant matter. Not sure that is disputed.”

            Lol you’re new here Water Wizard.


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          • #
            Bite Back

            I’m not going to make statements about where the oil came from. I don’t know where it came from. But it is there and it’s ours to use to our benefit if we want to.

            Do we still want to? That’s the question, not, how did it get there?


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          • #
            Andrew McRae

            WaterWizard and Wendy, some questions for you.

            Do you know of any modern corroborating evidence for stories about fossilised ferns and tree roots being found within coal seams?
            If that is true, would you say the minimum it proves is that oil existed before the fossilised trees?
            (e.g. some oil may have been formed from bacteria/plankton 50Ma+ before the dinosaurs.)

            What do you make of reports that some oil deposits were formed from source vegetation as “young” as 5Ma? Is that plenty of time to make oil by realistic processes?

            Also, given that hydrocarbons in similar chain length ratios to crude oil have been made in laboratory conditions using entirely non-organic source material, is it too early to dismiss the abiotic theory? I’m aware of the micro-fossil and stratification evidence that supports a common plant-based origin for coal, oil, and gas, but is it violating Occam’s Razor too much to suggest that deep abiotic oil invaded dead plant material long after the plants were fossilised? A kind of hybrid theory.


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            Mark

            It might be over a year ago now but someone posted a link to a video which featured a drilling specialist. At one point he stated that oil had been found at far greater depths than those from which any fossil had ever been found.

            I’ve also read for years that the Russians have never been as wedded to the ‘fossil fuel’ story as the west has. This is just a convenient excuse to price gouge.

            Carbon is the fourteenth most abundant element on earth. Can it really be so surprising that some of it is trapped in places where it is subject to extreme pressure and temperature?

            Finally, it was Maxine a while back who stated that oil comes from dinosaurs.


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            Andrew McRae

            Erm, further to my comment above, I have found a rather extensive list of evidence that the abiotic theory would have to satisfactorily explain.


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          • #
            Hector Pascal

            Water Wizard. Dolomite formation is a “problem” in geology. There aren’t any easy single solutions.

            Petroleum geology 101 gives us two organic sources for hydrocarbons. Plant material turns to coal on burial, and plant-dominated sources are known as “gas prone”. The Perth Basin is an example, and is not an attractive prospect for oil prospectors.

            Most commercial oil comes from algae. A good example is the Gulf of Mexico which combines a nutrient-rich sea with warm water and high sedimentation/burial rates. Bacteria have nothing to do with it.

            The conditions suitable for forming carbonates are either evaporites or clear water with low sedimentation. Carbonates form good reservoirs, not source rocks. You have got this completely arse-backwards. You are totally out of your depth. It’s time to stop digging, except it’s fun to see the wilfully ignorant on parade.

            Abiotic oil is a cargo cult. Traces of hydrocarbons in granite/venting from volcanos measured in ppm aren’t going to fuel the world’s economy. All commercial hydrocarbon production _without exception_ is sourced from organic material.


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            Water Wizard

            Algae hmm let me see, the algae is covered with… wait for it…bacteria. Its true the oil came from the breakdown of algae.

            The dolomite crystals have some other interesting properties to continue the oil process. The thing is when you tap into the dolomite aquifer and get the oil. Guess what, no more algae.


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      • #
        bananabender

        Hydrocarbons (alkanes) are readily formed in conditions found in the mantle from calcium carbonate and water using a iron ore as a catalyst. This has been reproduced in the laboratory.

        http://harvardmagazine.com/2005/03/rocks-into-gas.html

        Oner of my mates was one of the leading coal geologists in Australia back in the 70s and 80s. He tells me that fossils are quite rare in black coal.


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    Just me

    Fracking is proven to be damaging to water supplies and in a country where fresh water is a limiting factor already and stupid land use is reducing that amount by the day… do we really want this? I have no worries about being against developing this field. It’s only lack of political will and the oil industry’s financial interest of keeping us locked in oil dependency. Any producer of alternative energy will falter as long as the companies providing energy to industry and households have financial interests themselves in oil and gas. Why would they even be even theoretically assumed interesting in making solar power economically viable? For the rest, think for yourself ^^


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    lurker, passing through laughing

    Nature’s God laughs at the hubris and folly of the lefty hacks who dominate the public square.


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      Mattb

      I love this perverse interpretation of hubris. It is only ever used by people with the cock-sure swagger that the earth is ours to pillage and no harm is possible. How hubristic is that!


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        Of course you Mattb would never be guilty of that would you. Hubris is the defining description of everything that is left of centre. In fact, the word is not strong enough.


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        Bite Back

        Matt,

        It is not ours to pillage. But it is ours. And what is in it is ours to use.

        Wake up! Every thing you do is a trade off between what you gain and what you lose. You risk losing one thing by going after another. Such is life. Get used to it.


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    Mr Mauricio

    Just keep “burnin;burnin,burnin”-then wish away the consequences and hate anyone who points out the “flamin’ obvious.What kind of mentality is this???


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    I attempted to email this to a friend but the image capture did not display anything and I was unable to send


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    Steve Thatcher

    Peter Miller
    January 24, 2013 at 8:34 pm · Reply

    Water is obviously going to pose a problem in this semi-arid part of South Australia. The huge aquifers (southern limits of the Great Australian Artesian Basin) would probably be the natural water source for this project if it proves viable.

    I think it is a case of “Needs must”.

    If sufficient oil and gas resources can be demonstrated, then it will not be a case of the gross amount of water required (in the USA it is usually 3-8 million US gallons per hole – 1.0 US gallon = 3.8 litres), but the net amount required. The need to recycle water is becoming increasingly apparent in the fracking industry. Although a figure of 100% recycling is unachievable, a figure of around 80-90% should be achievable, but this will require additional investment. In many ways, it can be construed as the typical socialist way of solving a problem: “Throw money at it.”
    ************************************************************************
    The trouble is that they don’t just throw money at it, they throw other people’s money at it. Never never their own money.

    Steve T


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    Hasbeen

    So at long last we may have found a legitimate reason for the existence of South Australia.

    Instead of pumping billions into the place, simply because it is there, & a few people were stupid enough to settle there, it might at last start to pay it’s way.

    Now if we could just convince the kiwis to take Tasmania off our hands, our continued prosperity might just be possible.


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    RoHa

    How much of the oil is radioactive from the bomb tests?


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    Alice Thermopolis

    CAVEAT EMPTOR?

    LINC’s 23rd January ASX announcement refers to “unrisked prospective resources for unconventional reservoirs” estimated by “independent reports” to be a “233 billion barrels of oil equivalent (BOE)”.

    That’s 233 billion barrels? WOW.

    Can anyone elaborate on “unrisked prospective resources”?

    Is this just a hypothetical estimate, a guesstimate?

    Whatever they are, they are not AIMM proved and probable reserves.

    Will LINC’s ASX release attract ASIC’s attention?

    Watch this space.


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      ianl8888

      @Alice Thermopolis


      they are not AIMM proved and probable reserves

      Nor are these numbers published as Reserves – see my post on Resource and Reserve estimates downthread. That the idiot SA Minister used the word “Reserves” is accountable to him, not the exploration company

      I really despair over the unfeigned ignorance of the public at the difference between resource and reserve estimates. This stupid confusion arises every time these concepts appear in the public arena. No matter how many times the definitions are spelled out, the wilful stupidity continues. You’ve simply confirmed this, even though there is a post downthread of yours defining it all for you yet again. It is exactly akin to talking to a cement block


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        Alice Thermopolis

        Thanks Ian

        As this appears to be your area of expertise,I have a question for you:

        Is there, or is there not, an AASX/ASIC ruling on reporting “prospective resources” in the energy sector?”

        Alice – “cement block” – Thermopolis


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        Steve

        The confusion between resource and reserve has cropped up every time I’ve seen exploration figures explained to the public, whether gold, oil or copper (uranium).

        The mining industry really needs to change it’s language …

        Proven 3.5 Giga Barrels.

        Imaginary 233 Giga Barrels.

        There you go, all sorted :D


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    Philippa Martyr

    My concern is the surname of the man running the operation. We in WA are a bit sensitive still about the Bond family, and for good reason.


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    aota

    I think shale oil is not tight oil, but keragen. Fracking releases tight oil, but I read that you need pyrolysis to extract oil from keragen. That may not be cost-effective with oil at $95 a barrel. I would be happy to hear this is not so at Arkaringa.


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      Water Wizard

      It certainly is keragen in the Arckaringa Basin. Linc would want to do this in-situ. So frac it. Heat it up to 500 degrees on a cyclical basis over several years and hope you make more than you spend. Yes we made $20T but we spent $25T making it.

      This requires lots of water that is not available, a gas pipeline from Moomba or electrical power from the NEM for heating, lots of capital to get to a viable production volume and a pipeline to deliver the oil to a port. Meanwhile you would be praying for a higher oil price in $A and none of this causes any pollution.

      However, the MSM are so inept that they were glad to go along with the announcement. Its an election year and I have no doubt SA has its hand out to some red head in Canberra.

      So unless the process changes this is not going to happen. Hence the importance of understanding what bacteria works in what solution at what temperature. So find some Dolomite with live bacteria, culture it and inject it into a fracked shale with keragen. If the carbonate in solution starts forming a dolomite you may be in business.


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    Sallyco

    For this to be economic, wouldn’t the oil price have to go to $250/bbl?


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    wayne, s. Job

    I am having a bit of trouble believing that all this oil and gas, some buried down to 10 and 20 thousand feet could ever have originated on the surface as dead critters or flora. That hydrocarbons are found on meteorites and some of the moons in our solar system would tend to make me believe it is a natural product.

    Thus peak hydrocarbons will be when we are extracting it faster than it is made, before we ever reach that point, we will have moved on in technology, this does seem to be the way of our progress remember just as cities were about to drown in horse shit the automobile came along. Just as we are about to drown in global warming horse shit cooling came along, thus also will come new power sources, in the mean time we need this black stuff in abundance to grow and invent our future without the interference of misguided fools.


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      Geoff Sherrington

      The top of My Everest at nearly 30,000 ft is sedimentary rock. It has been raised that high above sea level by crustal movement forces. Logically, the sequence at the bottom of My Everest must have been 30,000 ft lower than the present sea surface at an earlier stage, if it is an intact sequence. Additionally, the 10,000 ft or so of The Grand Canyon is uplifted as mostly sedimentary rocks. Vertical movements of this order of size do happen, whether the sedimentary rocks contained vegetable matter or not. The lower layers do not, because plant matter started part way through the cycle of earth rock formation.

      There is an abiogenic theory for oil formation that seems most popular in Russia, but it remains a minority theory. The seldom absent signs of plant matter in coal are a strong indicator of that process at least working. It does not prove that only one process is at work, though.

      I’d not be too excited about dolomite plus wogs in my lifetime. If that process works, it is likely on present evidence to be very, very slow.

      I have simplified this blog enormously, so please don’t come back with nit picks. Please add positive stuff, though.

      We used to have a test for job applicants, to spell “penecontemporaneous dedolomitisation”. Calcite/dolomite geochemistry is quite complex and I am not sure all the answers are in yet.


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        wayne, s. Job

        Thank you for your input Geoff It just puzzles me that the quantities of oil gas are tar are immense and so wide spread. If you look at the processes of the natural environment today the burying of such huge quantities of carbonaceos material would require the destruction of the surface of the world and it’s immediate burial often. The world may be old but life and it’s complete destruction and burial does not seem to occur regularly.

        In the case of a mountain I can envisage the surface being pushed up into a mountain in the case of vast areas deeply underground swimming in oil I find some puzzlement.


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    Albert

    I knew about the shale in this region 40 years ago, the quantity recently discovered is larger and the extraction methods now make it a viable venture.


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    Leo G

    “Shale oil is more costly to extract and more controversial than conventional crude and involves fracking”

    Nonsense! Shale oil is extracted from oil shale (shale-clays with high kerogen content) by destructive distillation (ie retorting). The feedstock would be mined and and then processed nearby and the tailings treated and stored. Viability depends on the net energy yield. Estimates of Australian and USA reserves have been regularly updated for decades, but the industry won’t take off until extraction cost of conventional petroleum (not the market price) is sufficiently high for shale oil to compete.


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    MudCrab

    The blue splotch around Coober Pedy on the map below is not a lake.

    Back in the day (98-99) I was working at Olympic Dam a bit down the road from this new oil find. We were one of the engineering contract companies that did all the bit work for WMC (as it was then) and had our own yard with workshops and painting booths.

    In the yard protected by tarps was a speed boat.

    ‘Why is there a speed boat here?’ I asked, being younger at the time and more inclined to ask these sort of things.

    ‘Because,’ said my boss, ‘every couple of years you get really heavy rains, the salt lakes just out of town fill up and we go water skiing on the weekends.’

    So yeah, that blue might not be a lake NOW, but keep your boat in working order :D


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    Louis Hissink

    For those intrigued by the Linc Energy ASAX announcement, the term “unrisked” estimate looks like a new term to comply with government policy of applying the precautionary principle.

    Unrisked suggests that the announced resource estimate has not been subject to risk analysis, so that some ambulance chasing lawyer acting for a shareholder, can’t litigate on the announcement not being accurate.

    Otherwise it’s a guestimate of the hydrocarbon potential of the basin and probably linked politically to the revenue problems of the SA government since BHP-Billiton has mothballed the OD expansion. It’s all part of the game around the forthcoming Federal election, and hence to be taken with a truckload of salt.


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      Water Wizard

      All too true. The SA Government needs some good News. Linc probably need a decision on some acreage in SA or time to pay an account for some acreage.


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      Water Wizard

      There is irony. One of the main reasons why BHP did not proceed with Roxby was they bought PetroHawk for $15B and the shareholders thought this was a bit too much. It smacked of some other CEO at Rio. So the SA Government is just waving the Arckaringa Basin at BHP’s shareholders. Sounds like Marius is about to be replaced. Can’t see Dean Dalla Valle getting the guernsey but this may be a political move by SA to get their man into the top position. Perhaps SA might consider a 2GW Nuke at Port Augusta. Now that would show the Greens its an election year and get Roxby closer to the Go button.


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        MudCrab

        Personally I think a nuke plant at Port Augusta is a much more rational long term move.

        I have some ‘pet’ Greens within my social circle (they are sweet and lovely and get really freaked out when you wave bacon near them) and most of them are fully in support of the move to turn Port Augusta into a massive solar plant, provided of course the government gives them lots and lots of money to fund it.

        Sorry kids, but I have to take the pragmatic view to solar power – if it ‘works’ so well then why isn’t the private sector all over it?


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      Jon at WA

      Louis, we will see how serious this is if Gillard tows our remaining tank down there to defend this resource. Then again this government is as likely to transport a moth-balled submarine there, being a deep resource.


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        Louis Hissink

        oooh, careful, I have family in the RAN, and apparently they are working on making one of the Collins Class roadworthy for that very purpose.


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    Streetcred

    These discoveries and advancements in technology make a mockery of the “Peak Everything” brigade of alarmists: Exhaustion of Resources


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    bananabender

    Yawn. There’s at least a 1000 BILLION barrels of shale oil in the Toolebuc Formation in Queensland.


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    Andrew McRae

    The only gushing source of energy in this article is the hype.
    Over 170 comments and nobody here has mentioned the Energy Returned On Energy Invested ratio.
    Until you know if the ratio for that project is more than 4:1, you don’t know if it will be a net source or a net sink of energy.

    Some peak oil deniers reckon EROEI doesn’t matter, because not all Joules are equal and there are plenty of situations where hydrocarbon fuels are the only feasible energy source. Therefore if the market wants 10GWh of oil, they will pay 20GWh of energy in other forms to get the oil. Okay, I understand that.

    A low EROEI still indicates the end of the oil road is near, because it shows all the better return options have been depleted, and because it will stimulate R&D into ways of using batteries and electricity in applications (eg aviation) where presently only hydrocarbons can work. There is no guarantee that such fantasies will ever succeed.

    It is suspicious that the production rate speculated for this Arckaringa Basin in SA and the Stuart Basin in Qld was 100,000 bbl/day in both cases, for totally different fields using different extraction processes. A co-incidence of such round numbers smells bogus. That is the same rate per well head (2000+bbl/day) seen in many conventional wells (eg in Azerbaijan). That one field would boost Australia’s domestic production by 25% if it were true, but would still leave us importing 50% of our oil needs.

    The comparison with Saudi Arabia is a joke, as they produce over 9,000,000 barrels per day, not 100,000. I’ll believe the Arckaringa hype when I see it producing 2000bbl/day per wellhead. Shale oil fields sometime experience production declines of 40% in the first year alone.
    It wouldn’t matter if EROEI was 10:1 if the production rate from all these shale plays can’t together fill the gap between declining conventional production and demand. It is the production rate which is important for preventing an oil shock, not the total quantity recoverable.


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