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Originally posted by ConspiracyNut23
The production cost per barrel, $10 to $20, makes it competitive with conventional oil in the United States.
No end of adventurers have tried to tap oil shale over the past century. The oil crises of the 1970s spurred Exxon to embark on a $5 billion effort [...] but Exxon bled money to bake each barrel out of the shale. Once oil prices fell, the company knew it could never recover its costs. On May 2, 1982 [...] Exxon pulled the plug.
Originally posted by Valhall
Another interesting note is that in the past, when mining coal, the methane locked in the coal (referred to as coal bed methane) would just be released to atmosphere. Methane is about 20% worse than CO2 in its effects as a greenhouse gas, but is actually a cleaner FUEL than natural gas. So now there is a technique for capturing coal bed methane and using it. Its' aleady being employed in the northeast part of the U.S.
Originally posted by Voxel
They are talking about oil sand there. Why is it every time someone posts questions about the economic feasibility of oil shale I see a link to an article talking about the economic feasibility of oil sands?
Oil sands are old-news in Alberta which currently moves a couple million barrels a year and is increasing production every day.
Oil shale will never become economically feasible.
By the time the price of oil has risen to point where it is worth extracting oil from oil shale, our economy will already have collapsed because of the price of oil.
Every time you see a story talking about oil shale it mentions the same magical technology by Shell that might develop well enough that by 2010 they may be able to start producing oil. Want to bet Shell is just waiting for the oil prices to be high enough to make it all worth trying again?
From that same link provided above:
in case it hasn't been mentioned before, Shell isn't the only company that has explored insitu production of oil from shale. During the 70's and 80's OXY completed a prototype insitu retort and operated it successfully. It was the model for a large scale development that was later cancelled when President Reagan killed the Synthetic Fuels Corporation in 1984.
In 1998, I was employed as a consultant to update techno-economic studies for the OXY insitu retorting process. The results of that study showed that oil from shale could be produced in commercial quantities for $30 to $40 per barrel based on a 20% return on equity. At that time, MYMEX prices for light sweet crude were $14 to $15 per barrel.
Obviously, at today's oil prices, even considering inflation the insitu production of oil from shale looks economically attractive.
Originally posted by XS207
Isn't natural gas almost all methane? How would methane be a CLEANER fuel than natural gas. All fuels are pretty much clean unless they don't fully combust.
Originally posted by Voxel
Folks, the Rockies EXpress pipeline (REX) is natural gas only. The difference between the mechanics of transport of NG and oil is huge.