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Shell's Ingenious Approach To Oil Shale Is Pretty Slick
Rocky Mountain News ^ | Saturday, September 3, 2005 | Linda Seebach

Posted on 09/03/2005 1:58:07 PM PDT by Mount Athos

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To: oceanagirl

The solution of course is nuclear power to extract the oil, but there will still be a large "scar" where the oil shale has been mined. (Open pit I suspect). The answer is that it never has been free, energy will always take some toll on the environment.

But the time for this investment may not be here yet. We could dig in and find that more light sweet crude is available in the Middle East, (because we are being sandbagged) and the price could fall to below $30 and leave investors beholding to the government for the money to run the oil shale plant.

Of course we could and should start on the nuclear power now.

41 posted on 09/03/2005 2:46:21 PM PDT by KC_for_Freedom (Sailing the highways of America, and loving it.)
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To: afraidfortherepublic

"However, that still leaves the problem of refineries -- where do you send it? "

The good part about this process is that the oil is collected almost refined as is. The benzenes and smaller alkanes are the first to get collected. Those are the gasolines and jet fuels. Followed by heavier stuff, which may be able to run the heaters.

42 posted on 09/03/2005 2:47:25 PM PDT by Flightdeck (Like the turtle, science makes progress only with its neck out.)
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To: BulletBobCo; Squantos; Eaker

The Rats will protest....."We must protect the prairie dogs

...for the varmit hunters Texasproud,Eaker,Squantos, and a few other freepers.

43 posted on 09/03/2005 2:51:05 PM PDT by TEXASPROUD
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To: oceanagirl
The article claims a 3.5/1 ERoEI. Even 3/1 would be perfectly acceptable on a real-world basis. Clearly worth a good, hard look, I'd say.

What I'd like to see additionally along these lines is the establishment of a good number of coal-oil facilities. Easy to build, easy to operate and comparatively inexpensive, technology well-known, and produce a nice clean product that's almost #2. Absolutely feasible (if built on/near existing pipe) w/crude at or above $26-27. Less than that, really, if one amortises the start-up cost over, say, 25 years.

Further, coal oil (if we would push it) would have the huge advantage of almost immediately reducing the amount of NG being burnt just to heat. NG should be feedstock, not fuel; it's much more valuable in that role.

44 posted on 09/03/2005 2:53:53 PM PDT by SAJ
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To: freepatriot32

something you might want to ping?

45 posted on 09/03/2005 2:54:07 PM PDT by Brian328i
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To: Flightdeck

As asked earlier, how do they prevent an enormous loss of liquid via seepage?

46 posted on 09/03/2005 2:54:52 PM PDT by SAJ
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To: stboz

"We need supplies and refining capacity NOW."

Yep. Problem is how much money will our oil companies put up, to make a future profit. And if they are willing, always goes back to decades of environemental wackos/congress keeping us from becoming totally oil independent as we once where.
As we have read for years, oil shale processes have come and gone, for various reasons. Unless you have a totally united congress and executive branch that would not change course for some twenty years on the issue, I don't see how what we all would like to see happen will come to past.

47 posted on 09/03/2005 2:57:02 PM PDT by Marine_Uncle (Honor must be earned)
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They probably suck em out and distill them into liquid.

48 posted on 09/03/2005 2:57:16 PM PDT by Brilliant
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To: Mike Darancette

I think it's about time we tell the environazis to go suck a rock. We must remember that their carping is designed on a plan to destroy our society.

It's a dichotomy; the liberal "contituency" support the (so-called) "leaders" because they think they share goals. But while the constituency wants for example religion destroyed because they don't want their behavior and attitudes to be held up to examination and judgement, the leadership wants it destroyed because they want Big Brother to be considered the source of natural rights, not God.

That way Big Brother can take away as easily as he gives. When I started evaluating liberals' behavior and statements in that light, I started seeing their ulterior motives a little more clearly.

49 posted on 09/03/2005 3:00:48 PM PDT by Marauder (You can't stop sheep-killing predators by putting more restrictions on the sheep.)
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To: Andyman
Starting next week, they will be holding public hearings in northwest Colorado.

Anyone want to take bets that the ecofacists will show up in force to denounce this big oil intrustion on to the sacred burial grounds of the dung beetle or whatever?

50 posted on 09/03/2005 3:04:52 PM PDT by Vigilanteman (crime would drop like a sprung trapdoor if we brought back good old-fashioned hangings)
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From my understanding, isn't that was the ice walls are designed to accomplish? I understand that that would create a walled structure leaving the bottom open. I assume though that the shale and rock would maybe act as a liner on the bottom? I'm sure the engineers thinking of this already figured that out.

51 posted on 09/03/2005 3:08:47 PM PDT by Brian328i (Save clean mountain streams, don't let hippies bathe in them.)
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To: oceanagirl
The Energy Returned on Energy Invested ("ERoEI") of shale oil is reported to be quite low, say 3:2 to 2:1,

The article states: The energy balance is favorable; under a conservative life-cycle analysis, it should yield 3.5 units of energy for every 1 unit used in production.

"Shale oil" isn't even real oil. It's a substance called kerogen, which is an oil precursor. It requires considerable, energy-intensive processing to turn it into usable products, like gasoline, diesel and heating oil. It also has required considerable amounts of water to process, which is in very short supply in the intermountain west, unlike northern Alberta.

The article states: "Product" - about one-third natural gas, two-thirds light crude

52 posted on 09/03/2005 3:12:58 PM PDT by Jeff Chandler (Peace Begins in the Womb)
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To: Mount Athos
Study reveals huge U.S. oil-shale field

Seattle Times By Jennifer Talhelm, AP

Thursday, September 1, 2005 - 12:00 AM

WASHINGTON — The United States has an oil reserve at least three times that of Saudi Arabia locked in oil-shale deposits beneath federal land in Colorado, Utah and Wyoming, according to a study released yesterday.

But the researchers at the RAND think tank caution the federal government to go carefully, balancing the environmental and economic impacts with development pressure to prevent an oil-shale bust later.

"We've got more oil in this very compact area than the entire Middle East," said James Bartis, RAND senior policy researcher and the report's lead author. ...

For years, the industry and the government considered oil shale — a rock that produces petroleum when heated — too expensive to be a feasible source of oil. However, oil prices, which spiked above $70 a barrel this week, combined with advances in technology could soon make it possible to tap the estimated 500 billion to 1.1 trillion recoverable barrels, the report found.

The study, sponsored in part by the U.S. Department of Energy, comes about a month after the president signed a new energy policy dramatically reversing the nation's approach to oil shale and opening the door within a few years to companies that want to tap deposits on public lands.

The report also says oil-shale mining, above-ground processing and disposing of spent shale cause significant adverse environmental impacts. Shell Oil is working on a process that would heat the oil shale in place, which could have less effect on the environment.

Copyright © 2005 The Seattle Times Company

53 posted on 09/03/2005 3:14:47 PM PDT by GretchenM (Hooked on porn and hating it? Visit .)
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To: MplsSteve

Wonder if they could use the radioactive waste in the holding tanks destined for Nevada as a heat source. Two birds with one stone....

54 posted on 09/03/2005 3:17:11 PM PDT by Kozak (Anti Shahada: " There is no God named Allah, and Muhammed is his False Prophet")
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To: Maceman

50m bbls/sqmi wouldn't be bad.

55 posted on 09/03/2005 3:17:59 PM PDT by Old Professer (As darkness is the absence of light, evil is the absence of good; innocence is blind.)
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To: Brilliant
Alright, but it took them ten months to get 1,500 barrels of oil. That is not enough.

It was a proof of concept test well, not a production prototype.
56 posted on 09/03/2005 3:21:27 PM PDT by Kozak (Anti Shahada: " There is no God named Allah, and Muhammed is his False Prophet")
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Obviously, I only skimmed when I should have read carefully.

The technique described leaves a lot of material that could be likened to heavy oil in the ground as it pulls out the lighter factions.

I'd like to see this work, but I'll believe the 3.5:1 when I see it. I guess I've been reading too much EnergyResources on yahoo.

For the person who suggested nuclear, you might want to consider the eastern shales. There's plenty of water for both cooling and processing in the east, and there's a potential deposit in Tennessee (I believe), that will also yield uranium. In addition, the eastern shales are supposed to plump up much more with the hydrogen addition than are western shales.

I will be interesting to see how this plays out this time around.

57 posted on 09/03/2005 3:34:47 PM PDT by oceanagirl
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To: Mount Athos

BTTT. Hope that work I did for Suncor Canada helps out.

58 posted on 09/03/2005 3:53:05 PM PDT by AZ_Cowboy ("Be ever vigilant, for you know not when the master is coming")
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To: Marine_Uncle
I don't see how what we all would like to see happen will come to past.

We start by un-electing the dolts that have led us into this mess. I have worked in enviromental matters for thirty years. We passed the point of diminishing returns on environmental protection a long time ago.

59 posted on 09/03/2005 3:58:14 PM PDT by stboz
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To: Vigilanteman
the sacred burial grounds of the dung beetle

I'm not an environazi but I have seen dung beetles in action and I have nothing but the greatest respect for their perseverance and tenacity. They will struggle, push, pull, and strain for hours to wrestle a dried out turd, fifty times their size and weight and basically worthless, over hills and through valleys until they arrive at their destination ... congress.

60 posted on 09/03/2005 4:04:58 PM PDT by layman (Card Carrying Infidel)
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