[Homestead] oil was:Political
erthnsky at bellsouth.net
Mon Nov 13 15:51:45 EST 2006
Don Bowen wrote:
> At 11/13/2006, you wrote:
>> Look at the abundance of methane hydrates on the continental
>> shelves around the world; it's practically an untapped resource for
>> natural gas.
> And at what environmental cost? Already many fisheries around the
> world have collapsed or are near. Releasing methane is a prime cause
> of global warming.
We have a lot of things going on here, and I don't want to confuse
issues....As for the environmental cost, there's different implications
for drilling on land vs. drilling shallow water off the coast, vs.
drilling deep water, vs. drilling ultra deep. And that's just the
drilling aspect. Harvesting hydrates wouldn't require drilling in the
way that petroleum is drilled, it would be more like mining the rocks
off the bottom than drilling, and the environmental cost would be no
more than what we are presently doing. We dredge river bottoms for
navigation, and no one questions the environmental cost..how much
methane is released into the atmosphere from coal mining or other types
of mining? If you think the US has a lot of mines, tell the Chinese
that their mines are affecting atmospheric temperature rise and see if
they care. In some ways, we are becoming so concerned that we are
putting ourselves right out of competition. While we are busy over
analyzing the environmental aspect of things like the ultra deep oil
drilling, the Chinese have stepped in and started actually doing it, not
just researching it. Does it make it right? No, but the fact remains
that I believe the US is almost too cautious, too politically correct
when it comes to things in the public eye. Of course, when it comes to
other things, covert programs, the government doesn't give a rat's ass
about the environment (take the dumping of waste at Area 51 or any
number of other places).
Collapsing fisheries has less to do with hydrocarbon exploration in the
deep-water ocean and more to do with local economies, overfishing, and
littoral pollution, IMO. Most commercial fishing is done in shallower
water, nearer the coast. Granted, in the old days of oil exploration,
it did affect fishing, but now that exploration and drilling is in
deeper water, that's less of an issue. I read not too long ago about an
entire fascinating deepwater ecosystem under some of those massive rigs.
Methane is indeed a cause of atmospheric temperature rise. Cow farts,
permafrost melting from atmospheric temperature rise, and of course
natural methane seeps bubbling on the ocean floor are all culprits as
are the burning of fuels in our vehicles, etc. etc. To just say global
warming is not specific enough. You have ocean warming and atmospheric
warming and while inter-related, they are separate processes. This is
what I meant when I said I hate discussing this stuff, because it all
gets glommed together.
As for utilizing the methane hydrates on the ocean floor, well, I just
don't see how that is going to affect fishing or increase 'global
warming', provided we use appropriate technology. Actually, I would
think that by harvesting the hydrates, and using the methane locked in
the hydrates as fuel, that we would actually reduce the amount of
methane being released into the atmosphere because once that 'rock' is
on the surface, it is no longer bubbling methane on the ocean floor. By
controlling the temperature and pressure of the hydrate, as you would do
in an environmentally responsible harvest technique, you can eliminate
the release of methane. It is the warm water of ocean warming that is
actually speeding up and increasing the release of methane from the
hydrate. Check this out, Don, they are talking about the various
concerns and methods for utilizing this untapped resource.
>> (I know this isn't petroleum, but who knows what lies deeper under
>> the gas pocket-it's possible that petroleum has migrated/sunk
>> deeper into the 'ultra deep' regions.
> And how much will it cost to drill for and bring up oil from
> thousands of feet below the ocean surface. There may be oil at the
> well head but who will be able to afford it/
The oil companies will do it if they think it is profitable. Did you
not read the link I provided about keeping the price of oil high to make
the venture financially worthwhile?
There is no longer any easy solution. There is no longer a cheap
solution. There could be, with advances in technology, but companies
put the money in their pockets and into study groups instead of into
developing the technology. It's the same in the pharmaceutical industry
and countless other industries and institutions...money goes first into
the pocket, and by the time all the studies are done, there is nothing
leftover to actually implement the technology, nor is there motivation
to do so, since the money is flowing and consumerism abounds. Catch 22.
I'm pretty pessimistic about it all, sorry Marie, but James is right on
this one, until the people actually get a grip and change their
behaviors and attitude, things will stay the same, even though they
COULD be different. It's the old adage, drive like a sport, pay like a
sport. It applies to a lot of things.
BevanRon of EarthNSky Farm NW Georgia USDA Zone 7
34.498N 85.076W Bev is Earth, Ron is Sky
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