Blowout week 16 – Easter Weekend

World: «Газпром» — Бованенковское месторождение

Awesome pictures from Russian gas production facilities on the Yamal Peninsula, Siberia. Hat Tip to Energy Matters commenter Syndroma.

World: Ukraine unrest: Russian outrage at fatal Sloviansk shooting

Russia has expressed outrage at a fatal shooting in eastern Ukraine which it blamed on Ukrainian nationalists. Russian state media reported that five people had been killed in a gun attack on a checkpoint manned by pro-Russian activists near the town of Sloviansk.

The Energy Matters news gathering network is on Easter vacation. And so a light but eclectic mix of stories this week. Tension between Russia and Ukraine builds, blackouts in Scotland, coal in Germany, shale in Australia, even more oil in Russia, pipelines blown up in Iraq. World: Militants blow up oil, gas pipelines in N. Iraq

Militants on Thursday blew up two oil and gas pipelines in Iraq’s northern Saladin province, a security official said. “Militants detonated an explosive device near an oil pipeline and another near a gas pipeline in the town of Biji,” Saladin Police Captain Omar al-Juburi told Anadolu Agency. The explosions left thick black smoke in the air and oil spilling into the Tigris River, al-Juburi added, which prompted the local water authorities to cut off water supplies to the area’s purification plants.

World: Is a US-style shale revolution coming for Australia?

Australia, home to the world’s seventh largest recoverable shale gas reserves, has several characteristics conducive for commercializing the resource including existing infrastructure, industry know-how and low population density in shale-rich regions.

Europe: Coal Returns to German Utilities Replacing Lost Nuclear

What’s a beleaguered utility to do when forced by the government to close its profitable nuclear power plants? It turns to lignite, a cheap, soft, muddy-brown colored form of sedimentary rock that spews more greenhouse gases than any other fossil fuel.

Europe: Russia discovers 300 mln tn hydrocarbon field in Astrakhan Region

Russia has discovered a 300 million tonne hydrocarbon field in the Astrakhan Region in the south of the country, Natural Resources and Environment Minister Sergei Donskoi told reporters Wednesday.

World: Did Crude Oil Production Actually Peak In 2005?

“Wait a minute,” you must be saying. “Haven’t we been hearing from the oil industry and from government and international agencies that worldwide oil production has been increasing in the last several years?” The answer, of course, is yes. But, the deeper question is whether this assertion is actually correct.

UK: Highlands and Islands power cut investigation continues

Engineers are still trying to establish what caused a power cut which blacked out most of northern Scotland. Scottish and Southern Energy believes the outage, which struck on Wednesday evening, may have started with a fault on a line between Moray and Inverness. More than 200,000 properties were affected at the height of the disruption but electricity has now been restored to all homes.


So, the IPCC has released their report on climate change mitigation. Naturally various people are in spin-mode. Greenpeace’s “journalism” wing have “15 key findings from the IPCC mitigation report.” Unsurprisingly the findings that do not suit Greenpeace’s agenda are not key.

Europe: Hanhikivi investment decision

A binding decision to construct and finance the Hanhikivi nuclear power plant in Finland has been made by the shareholders of Fennovoima, including Russian state nuclear company Rosatom.

World: Kidnapping, attacks cripple northern Iraq oil sector

Anti-government militants have detonated the pipeline feeding crude to the Baiji refinery and have kidnapped the head of the Haditha refinery, as northern Iraq’s energy sector increasingly suffers from their push to destabilize Iraq.

World: Upstream oil and gas spending continues to favor exploration and development activity

Annual reports by oil and natural gas companies show that spending on exploration and development activities increased by 5% ($18 billion) in 2013, while spending on property acquisition continued to decline by $17 billion. Total upstream spending was relatively flat after a period of strong growth (averaging 11% per year) from 2000 to 2012.

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7 Responses to Blowout week 16 – Easter Weekend

  1. Hi Euan,

    Thanks for the link to the Yamal pictures. Terrific.


  2. Willem Post says:

    Here is my latest article: Russian Gas and US and EU Encroachments on Russia.

  3. Roger Andrews says:

    Willem: I agree with your analysis. What is needed now isn’t more encroachment but a “Cold Peace” treaty with Russia that finally puts an end to the Cold War, and the West is going to have to give up a few things to achieve it.

  4. philsharris says:

    Extra to your topics this blowout week.
    You have referred in an earlier post, I think to utilising remaining coal deposits in the UK.
    Would you like to comment on proposals ongong for coalbed methane from deep coal deposits under Central Scotland?
    You may not have seen Prof Derek Smythe’s paper on the subject, produced for the Public Enquiry?
    Hr takes to task some of the geological details in the proposal.
    His paper can be accessed via the local opposition’s website

    Apparently this proposal includes use of technology new to the UK.

    • Euan Mearns says:

      Phil, I can understand resistance to fracking and underground coal gasification. But I don’t understand the stated risks associated with CBM production. As far as I know you drill a horizontal well along the coal seam, and you need to pump the water out of the well to get the gas to flow, and so the underground system is working at reduced pressure, impossible for stuff to escape. There may be an issue with surface water disposal. But water treatment is fairly routine.

      I’ve had a look at the paper you link to. It is highly detailed and seems competent. It strikes me that it is designed to raise obstacles to development. If wells are cased and cemented, I don’t understand how methane can then become fugitive. If all sub-surface operations were subjected to this level of scrutiny we would never do anything.

  5. Luís says:

    It is great to be on holidays in a place where there is no internet. The press review will be back this week.

Comments are closed.