Brazil reports massive oil discovery

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Quigley_Sharps, May 23, 2008.

  1. Quigley_Sharps

    Quigley_Sharps The Badministrator Administrator Founding Member

    Oil-drilling platform in Gulf of Mexico
    Brazil has announced the discovery of a huge offshore oil field that could contain between 5 to 8 billion barrels of oil, enough to expand the country's proven reserves by 40 to 50 percent.
    The "ultra-deep" Tupi field was found under 7,060 feet of water, another 10,000 feet of sand and rocks and a further 6,600 feet of salt – a total of 4.48 miles below the surface of the Atlantic Ocean.

    Sergio Gabrielli, the chief executive officer of the state-run oil firm Petroleo Brasileiro SA told Brazil's President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva Monday that reserves in the pre-salt area off Brazil's coast are much larger than the Tupi field, possibly containing as much as 80 billion barrels in oil reserves.

    By specializing in advanced ultra-deep offshore oil exploration, Brazil has moved from being a country dependent on Ethanol for its gasoline consumption to becoming a net exporter of oil within less than a decade.

    Felipe Cunha, an oil analyst with the San Paulo-based brokerage Brascan told CNN, "If the best-case scenario happens, this discovery would make Petrobras' reserves overcome those of Shell and Chevron and put Petrobras behind only Exxon and British Petroleum."

    Brazil's offshore oil is being found in the Espirito Santo, Campos and Santos Basins some 50 miles into the Atlantic Ocean east of Rio de Janeiro.

    (Story continues below)

    The discovery challenges "peak oil" theorists who contend the Earth's supply of oil is running out.

    WND previously reported the geological description of the Campos Basin suggests that the rock formations in which the oil is being found are in Upper Oligocene to Lower Miocene deposits; in other words, deposits from the Cenozoic Era dating back only some 24,000 years.

    Many scientists believe dinosaurs dominated in the Mesozoic era stretching back 250 million years ago and ending some 65 million years ago, which would contradict the theory that dead dinosaurs or decaying ancient forests formed the oil off Brazil's soil.

    The Campos Basin deposits are typically described as "turbidite," a sedimentary deposit that consists of material moved down a steep slope at the edge of the continental shelf.

    The biological content of the Campos Basin rock is found to contain "benthic foraminifera," little shell creatures that live on the ocean bottom.

    The rock itself is described as having been formed in "bathyal" conditions, a term typically reserved to describe the ocean floor from half a mile to about two miles down.

    The geological description of the Campos Basin is consistent with the abiotic theory, that oil is formed inorganically, within the mantle of the earth, and seeps up into reservoirs formed in porous sedimentary rock deposits.

    The "peak oil" theory was first proposed in 1956 by Shell Oil's M. King Hubbard who drew a bell shaped curve and argued that oil production would gradually diminish to nothing after reaching "peak production" sometime in the 1970s.

    Critics have charged that peak oil theorists continually revise their estimates of when oil production will be exhausted without abandoning their theory when new discoveries of oil reserves challenge their fundamental assumptions.

    The Energy Information Administration, or EIA, of the U.S. Department of Energy continues to report world proven oil reserves exceeding 1.3 trillion barrels, the most in human history, despite oil consumption doubling since 1970.

    Brazil's huge offshore oil find also challenges U.S. advocates of ethanol.

    According to the EIA, Brazil is the 10th largest energy consumer in the world and the third largest in the Western Hemisphere, right behind the U.S. and Canada.

    For decades, Brazil was considered oil-poor, reliant upon the production of ethanol to provide gasoline for automobiles.

    Today, the EIA reports over half the cars in Brazil are flex-fuel, meaning they can run on 100 percent ethanol or an ethanol-gasoline mixture.

    The EIA further reports eight of ten cars sold in Brazil are flex-fuel vehicles and all gasoline in Brazil contains ethanol, with blending levels ranging from 20 to 25 percent.

    Offshore oil has increased Brazil's oil production since 2005, with the EIA estimating it will reach 2.32 million barrels a day this year, allowing the country for the first time to become a net exporter of oil.

    The EIA now ranks Brazil's oil reserves at second only to Venezuela. The three major suppliers of oil to the U.S. are now Canada, Mexico and Venezuela.

    WND reported Chevron in September 2006 announced the discovery of a giant oil reserve in the Gulf of Mexico, the Jack Field, estimated to hold as much as 15 billion barrels of oil, enough to increase the U.S. proven reserves by as much as 50 percent.

    Still, environmentalists largely have blocked offshore ultra-deep oil exploration in the U.S.

    Yet, in 2006, Cuba announced plans to hire the communist Chinese to drill for oil some 45 miles off the shores of Florida.

    This move was made possible by the 1977 agreement under President Jimmy Carter that created for Cuba an "Exclusive Economic Zone" extending from the country's western tip to the north, virtually to Key West, Fla.
  2. ColtCarbine

    ColtCarbine Monkey+++ Founding Member

    Betcha the price of oil doesn't drop over this discovery or any other future discoveries elsewhere. It would be nice if environmental restrictions were lifted here in the U.S. for off-shore drilling, to help wean us off of importing oil.
  3. E.L.

    E.L. Moderator of Lead Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    If the price of gas continues to climb and the public really starts to push it, maybe even the thick skulled liberals running for the White House and those in congress will change their views on off-shore drilling and ANWR.
  4. ColtCarbine

    ColtCarbine Monkey+++ Founding Member

    Speaking of ANWR and environmentalists affecting oil exploration and thus possibly affecting the price of oil in the future. Are environmentalists affecting supply and demand and keeping us dependent on foreign oil? Yup, me thinks they are not helping whatsoever and at the same time they are the ones bitching the most about oil company profits. Are they not helping oil companies profits by limiting our ability to drill and explore for oil.

    Check this out!

  5. Ivan

    Ivan Monkey++

    a measly 8 billion barrels, 4 miles down out in the open ocean. meh.
  6. ozarkgoatman

    ozarkgoatman Resident goat herder

    [beer] Gee lets see the world uses 84 mil. barrels a day so it's a 95.2 day supply. Ok I feel better now. [winkthumb]

  7. Tango3

    Tango3 Aimless wanderer

  8. ColtCarbine

    ColtCarbine Monkey+++ Founding Member

    Who cares what the rest of the world's demand is, we should be caring about what's the United States demands/needs are. I don't know the exact U.S. usage of oil but believe it's in excess of 20 million barrels/day, which this discovery is a one years supply for the U.S. You can't tell me that this is the only find out there, waiting to be tapped. Foreign companies drilling in areas we can't and you're not at the least bit concerned. I'm hoping that restrictions will be lifted concerning off-shore oil drilling because of this. I'd like to see oil companies employ more people and us be less dependent on foreign oil and tap our own oil. If we were able to find 20 of these or more, we just might be able to tell foreign oil suppliers to pound sand.
  9. ColtCarbine

    ColtCarbine Monkey+++ Founding Member

    Somebody is willing to spend the money and others willing to do the same, hmmm must not be worth it. [BSf]

    How about an estimated 31 billion barrels of untapped oil on BLM land?

  10. ColtCarbine

    ColtCarbine Monkey+++ Founding Member

    America needs fewer restrictions on domestic oil drilling. The U.S. remains the only oil-producing nation that has placed a substantial amount of its energy potential off-limits. This includes a few thousand acres of Alaska's 19.6 million-acre Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR). This small proportion of ANWR is believed to contain 10 billion barrels of oil—an amount equivalent to 15 years of imports from Saudi Arabia.[1] Even more oil is located in other restricted areas throughout the United States, and more still in the 85 percent of America's Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) that is off-limits.[2]
  11. ozarkgoatman

    ozarkgoatman Resident goat herder

    The US uses about 25 mil. barrels per day so it would be a 320 day supply. Theres only one problem, it belongs to Brazil and not the US. [beat] So do we send the Navy down there to secure it for America??? [cow]

  12. poacher

    poacher Monkey+++ Founding Member

    I would like to think that we are willing to drill and tap our oil reserves. However what really kind of torques my twinkies is that we have found oil 5 or so miles out from the Fla. coast. We've put it on the news and the fact that sooooooo many people objected that it wasn't gone after. I really wonder just how loud these idiots that blocked us from going after that oil are going to scream when there is a china or iranian oil rig that is floated to 5 miles and 100 ft. and they start going after the oil we found. If memory serves me correctly 5 miles makes it international waters so the people drilling could flip the others off and keep going.

    Take care Be safe Poacher.
  13. ColtCarbine

    ColtCarbine Monkey+++ Founding Member

    Nope we just start drilling right next to them by continuing to try and pass legislation that would lift off shore drilling restrictions in the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic.

    Is drilling everywhere possible the answer to all our problems, nope but it would be nice to not be supporting other countries and being a little more self-sufficient, while buying us some time to implement some serious changes to how we depend on oil in all aspects of our lives.

    ETA: Seems ironic that a country that relies heavily on ethanol for automoblies (while we imposed a 100% tariff on them exporting sugar cane based ethanol to us); extract oil from shale (a process we say isn't worth doing and the USGS says we might have the largest deposits of oil shale in the world) is now drilling for oil less than 100 miles from us and is going to become an exporter of with China to follow.
  14. ColtCarbine

    ColtCarbine Monkey+++ Founding Member

    BP is willing to spend $1.54 billion on a field that is considerably smaller and is over 22,000ft. in depth in 5,000-7,000ft. of water.

    Mad Dog Field, Gulf of Mexico, USA

    The Mad Dog field is located in Western Atwater Foldbelt, Gulf of Mexico, approx. 190 miles south of New Orleans. The nominal water depth is 4,500ft and the field runs along the Sigsbee Escarpment. The field is operated by BP 60.5% on behalf of BHPBilliton 23.9% and Unocal 15.6%.

    The drilling unit is located in 5,000ft to 7,000ft of water in Green Canyon blocks 825, 826 and 782, about 150 miles southwest of Venice, Louisiana. The gross estimated reserves are in the range of 200 to 450 million barrels of oil equivalent. The development has cost $1.54 billion to bring onstream.

    The discovery well, in water depths of approx. 6,600ft, was spudded in May 1998 in Green Canyon 826 and was drilled to a measured depth of 22,410ft. The discovery was followed by a 1999 well drilled to a total depth of 22,410ft and a further successful appraisal well in February 2000. The project was sanctioned in 2001.

    Mad dog's pre-drilled wells were drilled by the Ocean Confidence.

    The Mississippi fan fold belt is characterised by basinward-verging anticlines and associated thrust faults. Mad Dog is one of a number of discoveries occurring in the western portion of the fold belt, where shallow salt tongues have flown over some of the folds, making seismic imaging difficult.

    The field is being developed by 12 wells produced with a single-piece truss spar permanently moored in 4,500ft water depths in Green Canyon Block 782, 306km south of New Orleans.

    The fabrication of the spar hull commenced in Finland in July 2002, and the topsides in Morgan City, Louisiana, one month later.

    The deck measures 220ft by 163ft by 50ft (67m x 50m x 15m) and was designed around the heaviest hook load available (around 8,000t). The host facility includes production facilities with 16 slots in a 4 x 4 pattern (13 production slots, a drilling riser slot and two service slots), and quarters for 126 personnel, although the temporary quarters can accommodate an additional 60 persons. The spar also has a BP-owned drilling rig with an operating weight of 5,500t.

    The 20,800t hull measures 128ft in diameter and is 555ft long. The facility is designed to process approximately 100,000 barrels of oil and 60mscf of gas per day. The spar has a maximum operating payload capacity of around 18,500t excluding hull storage. The topside and integrated decks total 10,500t

    The trus spar took three weeks to travel from Finland to Passagoula, Mississippi, on the Mighty Servant 1, where it was floated off and pre-assembly preparations were completed. The Thialf was then used to lift the topsides into place.

    The spar is moored by an 11-line taut mooring configuration. There are three mooring line groups - two with four lines and one with three. The polyester mooring lines are attached to suction piles, resulting in a saving of around 1,000t of buoyancy over rope and chain systems. It is the first such use of synthetic moorings approved by the US Coast Guard or MMS.

    Oil from Mad Dog will be transported via the Caesar pipeline to Ship Shoal 332B, where it will interconnect with the Cameron Highway Oil Pipeline System (CHOPS). Mad Dog gas will be exported via the Cleopatra pipeline to Ship Shoal 332A, where it will interconnect with the Manta Ray Gathering System, and from there to the Nautilus Gas Transportation System into Louisiana. Both Caesar and Cleopatra pipelines are part of the BP-operated Mardi Gras Transportation System.
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