Exploring Hydrocarbon Depletion
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But the complicated field - originally due to start pumping oil in 2005 - will take longer to develop, Eni is expected to warn shortly.
The operator has pushed back its start date several times, most recently to 2008, but is now set to announce production will not start until 2009 at the earliest.
LinkThe truth has turned out to be much less sanguine even tragic. Some think that this remote region north of Afghanistan played an important role far exceeding its actual reservoir importance. It is thought by many that the invasion of Afganastan was motivated by an oil-pipeline out to the west.
In 2001 the largest Caspian reservoir complex (Kashagan) was finally discovered. It was deemed to be the greatest field in the decade. The enthusiasm has since vanished. It is now thought that the Kashagan field contains perhaps 9-13 billion barrels of petroleum (and the entire Caspian region has perhaps 16 to 43 billion barrels.)
Furthermore, Caspian oil is deeply located, offshore, and requires a costly, complex technology for recovery (including ice breakers). The Caspian Sea is landlocked so oil rigs have had to be cut up into parts, floated down the Volga River, and then reassembled. BP Amoco is reported to have spent nearly $200 million to reconstitute one such rig. Caspian oil also has a high sulfur content, a contaminant which must be removed on site because it damages pipelines. The region is surrounded by antagonistic, warring cultures. One of the reasons the Soviet oil industry left the Caspian for the Vulga and Siberia was the expense and technological difficulty of oil recovery in its remaining Caspian fields. In 2002 BP and Stat Oil quietly sold their 14% of Kashagan for 800 million dollars. In 2003 British Gas put their 17% on the block for 1.2 billion dollars.
pstarr wrote:This is way too funny. 25% of 13 billion will last the world another 2 months at our current consumption rate.
The biggest oil field to be discovered in the world in the past 30 years, it is in the North of the Caspian Sea, in the Kazakh sector (as shown on the map above), and it is being developped by a consortium including all the big majors - ExxonMobil, Shell, Total, ConocoPhillips, ENI and Inpex, with ENI, the Italian group, as the operator (Exxon did not want Shell, Shell did not want Exxon, and ENI was smarter than Total to be voted in...)). BP and BG were initially in but sold their shares in recent years. With 9-15 billion barrels of reserves (exploration is not totally complete), it is yet another ANWR fully in control of BigOil, but it is very, VERY, challenging technically (very high pressures, located in an areas which is at times seawater, ice, mud or any combination in between, and far away from any infrastructure of any kind in an area with a very tough climate) and it will need to find export routes for its production (a combination of CPC and BTC is likely to start with).
clv101 wrote:pstarr wrote:This is way too funny. 25% of 13 billion will last the world another 2 months at our current consumption rate.
It shouldn't be belittled like that, an extra 300,000 b/d is a lot!
such is the nature of declining energy returns.PWALPOCO wrote:1985 - 32 Fields needed to peak at 2.5mbd
1999 - 136 Fields needed to re-peak at 2.5mbd.
Thats a lot of extra work to stay still.
All we are really doing now is finding a bit of loose change
Concerned wrote: I disagree. In the big picture scheme of things 300,000 b/d is NOT a lot.
altair333 wrote:...when you add these stories together, you've got a very significant amount of oil coming online that wasn't known about last year at this time...
rockdoc123 wrote:All we are really doing now is finding a bit of loose change
Well considering this ends up being one of the largest in-place accumulations of oil in the world I hardly think it is loose change.
As with everything in life timing is important. Based on the WoodMac analysis of production coming on stream over the next ten or so years (only announced projects) the bulk of Kashagan doesn't hit until everything is starting to decline off a conventional oil peak in 2013 or so. Basically it tends to flatten out the decline as does other fields from the Caspian that are projected to come on stream. CERA requires unconventional oil to get its flat plateau out to 2030 or more.
12/12/06 Lloyd's List Int'l
December 12, 2006
Fifth biggest oilfield dogged by delays
Estimates claim that the Kashagan development off Kazakhstan could produce 1.5m barrels of oil a day when in peak production, writes Nigel Green
THE Kashagan oilfield development has been delayed by a vast range of environmental and safety problems, but is believed to hold around 38bn barrels, making it the fifth biggest in the world.
Latest estimates claim the field could produce 1.5m barrels of oil a day at peak production, boosting supply to Europe and beyond from 2010.
But the optimistic forecast comes after a series of delays. Originally it had been hoped that Kashagan would be producing oil by 2004.
The delays are reported to have been caused by a range of safety concerns as well as disputes between partners in the consortium developing the field.
The original capital development cost estimation of $29bn will rise to around $35bn, according to experts, making it one of the most costly projects in the world.
In October, Kazakh energy and mineral resources minister Baktykozha Izmukhambetov said: 'Some technical issues need to be addressed. There are some technical challenges and it is possible we are going to build some more production islands.
'Based on preliminary estimates, we will not get the first oil until 2009.'
Umberto Carrara, managing director of Agip KCO, said: 'The authorities are fully knowledgeable of the situation and the date they state is in the range of possibilities.'
First, as the world's largest lake, it freezes from November to March when temperatures can drop as low as minus 40C.
Conventional rigs would be crushed in the ice. Instead, operator Agip KCO has already built four of 17 islands planned for the area, which has water depths of just two to four metres.
The islands have been constructed from 4.5m tonnes of rock placed on the seabed and secured by steel sheet piling. Each island is protected with man-made berms.
Each has a self-moving rig, which ramp up and move along tracks.
Another challenge is that the oil has a high sulphur content and is under high-pressure, therefore increasing the risk of a blow-out.
Sour gas compressors have been made specially for Kashagan. At 35 megawatts and 800 bars, they have the highest combination of power and pressure in the industry.
Each island is equipped with special tracked vehicles capable of evacuating workers across the ice in the event of a leak of hydrogen sulphide gas or during any other dangerous incident.
Kazakhstan Orders Eni to Halt Work on Biggest Field (Update4)
By Nariman Gizitdinov and Greg Walters
Aug. 27 (Bloomberg) -- Kazakhstan ordered Eni SpA to halt work at the world's biggest oil discovery in 30 years as the Central Asian country follows Russia's lead in seeking greater control over its natural resources.
The Eni-led Kashagan development was suspended for at least three months because of ``environmental violations,'' Environment Minister Nurlan Iskakov said on state television today. Kazakh officials also told Eni to halt construction of a refinery for allegedly violating safety rules and opened a criminal probe into alleged customs violations by an Eni unit.
Kashagan holds 12 billion barrels of recoverable crude, enough to supply the U.S. for 19 months, according to the Kazakh Energy Ministry. Setbacks have pushed the total cost of the project to $136 billion, more than double earlier estimates, according to the government.
Eni officials will hold ``friendly'' talks with Kazakh authorities today, a Rome-based spokeswoman for the company said by phone, declining to comment on the suspension or alleged violations. Chief Executive Officer Paolo Scaroni said last week that he would fly to Kazakhstan for talks in September, followed by Italian Prime Minister Romano Prodi in October.
Eni said in February that production at the field would start two years behind schedule and that costs for the first phase would almost double to $19 billion. The company attributed the delay and higher cost in part to the need to meet environmental standards. Eni had planned to start commercial production at Kashagan in the third quarter of 2010, with output eventually reaching 1.5 million barrels a day.
Last Updated: August 27, 2007 09:53 EDT
pstarr wrote:I believe the problem is sulfur and nimbyism. Fancy Caspian seaside vacationers (think Hamptons in the Balkans) do not look forward to swirling clouds of sulfur dust ruining their cocktail hours. No one wants yellow yellowtail.
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