Oil sands GHG lifecycle study using operating data finds lower emitting oil sands cases outperform higher emitting conventional crude cases; a call for more sophisticated tools and reporting

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Well-to-wheel (WTW) greenhouse gas emissions for in situ SAGD and surface mining pathways generated employing GHOST/TIAX/ GHGenius combination and comparison with SAGD, mining and conventional crude oil literature pathways (all results are on a HHV basis).

China’s CNOOC to acquire Canada-based Nexen for $15.1B; offshore oil and gas, oil sands, and shale gas

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CNOOC Limited—China’s largest producer of offshore crude oil and natural gas and one of the largest independent oil and gas exploration and production companies in the world—is acquiring all of the Common Shares of Canada-based energy company Nexen Inc. 20 July 2012 and a premium of 66% relative to the volume-weighted average price of the Common Shares over the 20 trading days ending 20 July 2012. It is the second-largest oil producer in the UK North Sea.

IHS CERA meta-analysis finds lifecycle GHG emissions for fuel produced solely from oil sands crude average 11% higher than from average crude refined in the US; high variability

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Average values for WTW GHG emissions for oil sands and other crudes, tight boundary. However, the majority of the difference was due to increases in the estimate for GHG intensity of some oil sands extraction methods, such as SAGD dilbit, mining SCO and CSS dilbit. —2012 Update.

Gearing up for the month of Earth Day, 2012

Revenge of the Electric Car

The filmmakers of "Revenge of the Electric Car" urge you to bring electric vehicles to the front of the conversation next month, so we can introduce alternative energy mobility to more people and free us from inefficient oil dependance.

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DOE, DOI and EPA formally partner to coordinate and align research associated with developing US unconventional gas and oil

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The US Departments of Energy (DOE) and of the Interior (DOI), and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced a formal partnership to coordinate and align all research associated with development of the US’ unconventional natural gas and oil resources such as shale gas and oil.

2012 114

Harvard Kennedy School researcher forecasts sharp increase in world oil production capacity and risk of price collapse

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World oil production capacity to 2020 (crude oil and NGLs, excluding biofuels). Source: Maugeri 2012. Oil production capacity is surging in the United States and several other countries at such a fast pace that global oil output capacity could grow by nearly 20% from the current 93 million barrels per day to 110.6 Such an increase in capacity could prompt a plunge or even a collapse in oil prices, he suggests. —Maugeri 2012.

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USGS estimates nearly 39 billion barrels of oil undiscovered and technically recoverable in two Arctic petroleum provinces; 275 trillion feet of gas

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Even though only a small part is thoroughly explored, it is one of the most prolific petroleum provinces in North America, with total known resources (cumulative production plus proved reserves) of about 28 billion barrels of oil equivalent, according to USGS. Arctic Natural Gas Oil

Alaska 119

US BLM issues draft PEIS for oil shale and oil sands; significantly scales back public land available for commercial leasing

Green Car Congress

The US Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has published the Notice of Availability (NOA) of the Draft Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PEIS) and Possible Land Use Amendments for Allocation of Oil Shale and Tar Sands Resources on Lands Administered by the BLM in Colorado, Utah and Wyoming. In addition, 91,045 acres in eastern Utah would be available for activities related to oil sands. It should not be confused with “shale oil,” which is not addressed by the draft PEIS.

Annual global oil & gas capital expenditure to pass $1-trillion mark in 2012

Green Car Congress

Increased activity in the Exploration and Production (E&P) sector will be the primary driver in pushing oil and gas capital expenditure (capex) to $1.039 trillion for 2012, according to the latest report by business intelligence firm GlobalData. The new report— Oil & Gas Capital Expenditure Outlook, H1 2012 —forecasts that the total oil and gas capex will increase by 13.4% of the 2012 global total.

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Enterprise and Enbridge to proceed with Seaway and Flanagan South oil pipeline extensions; enhanced capacity for Canadian and Bakken crude to Gulf Coast

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Enterprise and Enbridge are nearing completion of the first phase of the reversal of the Seaway Pipeline, which will provide 150,000 bpd of southbound takeaway capacity from Cushing to the Gulf Coast by 1 June 2012. Infrastructure Oil Oil sands

2012 114

Neste Oil complete first phase of its microbial oil pilot plant; feedstock for NExBTL renewable diesel

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Neste Oil plans to use yeast and fungi to convert waste into oil for NExBTL feedstock. Neste Oil has completed the first phase of its project to build a pilot plant for producing microbial oil for use as a feedstock for NExBTL renewable diesel.

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Understanding the variability of GHG life cycle studies of oil sands production

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Credit: ACS, Brandt 2012. Brandt considers factors affecting energy consumption and GHG emissions from oil sands extraction, and then uses publicly available data to analyze the assumptions made in the LCA models to better understand the causes of variability in emissions estimates.

Pike Research scores Shell, BP highest in assessment of oil majors’ commercialization of biofuels

Green Car Congress

Pike Pulse Grid for oil majors commercializing biofuels. According to a new Pike Pulse report from Pike Research, the oil majors currently best positioned to drive and profit from the growth of biofuels are Shell and BP. Bio-hydrocarbons Biodiesel Biomass Cellulosic ethanol Diesel Oil

2012 106

Your Greenius Earth Day Reality Check: Waiting For The Magic Bullet

Creative Greenius

Today is Earth Day 2012, a day filled with celebrations of the environment and all the things being done to try and improve it and make it more sustainable. You can go to events where you recycle your old paper tax records, your motor oil, your cellphone, computers and other electronics. .

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Sandia researcher calculates likely discharge of 4.9-5.8 million barrels of oil from Deepwater Horizon well

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Calculated cumulative and net oil discharged from MC252. Credit: ACS, Griffiths 2012. Stewart K Griffiths (2012) Oil Release from Macondo Well MC252 Following the Deepwater Horizon Accident. Stewart K.

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Japex to proceed with C$1.4B Hangingstone oil sands expansion

Green Car Congress

Japex) will proceed with an expansion of its oil sands project in the Hangingstone area in Alberta. Japan Canada Oil Sands Ltd. Japan Petroleum Exploration Co, Ltd. Total costs for the initial development are anticipated to be around C$1.4 billion (US$1.42 billion), C$1.1

US to become world’s biggest oil producer

Green Cars News

It’s the USA which is leading the way too, projected to become the world’s largest oil producer by 2017 and a net exporter of oil and natural gas by 2020. [.]. Green credentials energy IEA Oil

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Canada oil sands producers form alliance to improve environmental performance

Green Car Congress

Twelve of Canada’s oil sands producers have formed a new alliance, Canada’s Oil Sands Innovation Alliance (COSIA), focused on accelerating the pace of improving environmental performance in Canada’s oil sands through collaborative action and innovation. CRNL and several other oil sands producers are also working on Mature Fine Tailings (MFT) dewatering. The ceramic membrane is a filter that separates oil and suspended solids from produced water. Imperial Oil.

Tailings Technology Roadmap project releases nine development roadmaps for treatment of oil sands fine tailings

Green Car Congress

The report provides nine different Tailings Technology Deployment (TDD) Roadmaps to accelerate the implementation of oil sands tailings solutions in Alberta. This project provides us with a full view of the suite of tailings technologies for application to oil sands reclamation.

New study finds GHG emissions from palm oil production significantly underestimated; palm oil biofuels could be more climate-damaging than oil sands fuels

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The majority (62%) of the plantations were located on the island of Sumatra, and more than two-thirds (69%) of all industrial plantations were developed for oil palm cultivation, with the remainder mostly being Acacia plantations for paper pulp production. The publication of the study coincides with the close of the comment period on a new US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) analysis of the carbon intensity of palm oil biodiesel.

2012 100

EIA: Price ratio of crude oil to natural gas continues to increase

Green Car Congress

The ratio between the spot prices of crude oil and natural gas has been generally increasing since January 2009, but it has climbed rapidly in recent months, according to data from the US Energy Information Administration (EIA). Crude oil to natural gas price ratio.

2012 108

Galten Biodiesel to supply jatropha oil to Neste Oil

Green Car Congress

Israel-based Galten Biodiesel has signed a NIS 225-million (US$60-million) contract to supply 60,000 of Jatropha oil to Finland-based Neste Oil, the producer of NExBTL renewable fuels, beginning in 2014. Signing a letter of intent with a giant Finnish company is a substantial stage in Galten establishing itself as a major supplier of vegetable oil to Europe’s biodiesel industry.”. Globes.

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Lux Research: Cost of replacing a barrel of produced oil up 350% in 13 years

Green Car Congress

The cost associated with replacing a barrel of produced oil has risen from $6 per barrel in 1998 to $27 per barrel in 2011, according to Lux Research—an increase of 350%. Unconventional oil will be a key area of focus for producers. In 2012, 62.5% will be in the oil sands.

2012 100

Study concludes permanent loss of peatlands in open-pit oil sands mining adds significantly to carbon burden of oil sands production

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Researchers at the University of Alberta (Canada) have quantified the transformation of the boreal landscape by open-pit oil sands mining in Alberta, Canada to evaluate its effect on carbon storage and sequestration. Oil sands deposits accessible by open-pit surface mining (as opposed to deeper deposits produced via thermal in-situ methods) cover about 475,000 ha of boreal Alberta, 99% of which is already leased. Schindler (2012). LCFS Lifecycle analysis Oil sands

Researchers show combining torrefaction pre-treatment with catalytic fast pyrolysis improves quality of bio-oil

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Researchers at Auburn University and North Carolina State University have shown that using a simple pretreatment process—torrefaction—improves the quality of bio-oil produced via catalytic fast pyrolysis.

2012 112

EIA: US importing more crude from Canada, even as total imports falling; 25% of imports in 2011, 28% so far in 2012

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US imports of Canadian crude oil rose to record levels during the first eight months of 2012, with Canada accounting for a growing share of total gross US imports, according to the US Energy Information Administration (EIA). Almost 99% of Canadian oil exports are sent to the US market.

2012 100

ExxonMobil plans five-year investment of $185B to develop new energy supplies; 21 major oil and gas projects to begin production between 2012 and 2014

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Demand for electricity will make natural gas the fastest growing major energy source and oil and natural gas are expected to meet 60% of energy needs over the next three decades. A total of 21 major oil and gas projects will begin production between 2012 and 2014. In 2012 and 2013, the company expects to start up nine major projects and anticipates adding more than 1 million net oil-equivalent barrels per day by 2016. billion oil equivalent barrels.

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Winners of 2012 Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge

Green Car Congress

and Jim Jones, Acting Assistant Administrator for the Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention at the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), announced the winners of the 2012 Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Awards. The awardees for 2012 are: Professor Robert M. in the Small Business category for their groundbreaking work using metathesis catalysis to produce high-performing, green specialty chemicals at advantageous costs from renewable oils.

2012 81

Japan will begin test drilling for oil and gas off Niigata coast in 2013

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Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) will begin test drilling for oil and natural gas in the Sea of Japan off the coast of Niigata Prefecture in April 2013. and Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corp. Nikkei.

2012 103

Studies find oil sands-derived crude oil no more corrosive in pipelines than other crudes

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Both scientific research and industrial experience have found that bitumen-derived crude oil (i.e., crude from the oil sands) is no more corrosive in transmission pipelines than other crudes, according to Natural Resources Canada (NRC). ASTM International recently published a guide ( G205 ) for measuring the corrosivity of crude oil under pipeline conditions, based on research conducted by several organizations including the CANMET Laboratories of NRC.

Study finds plausibly high volumes of Canadian oil sands crudes in US refineries in 2025 would lead to modest increases in refinery CO2 emissions

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An analysis of the US refining sector, based on linear programming (LP) modeling, finds that refining plausibly high volumes of Canadian oil sands crudes in US refineries in 2025 would lead to a modest increase in refinery CO 2 emissions (ranging between 5.4% The estimates account both for increased oil sands crude in the refinery crude slate and the imposition of new fuel sulfur specifications, which require additional refining effort. Emissions Lifecycle analysis Oil Oil sands

EIA 2035 reference case projects drop in US imports of petroleum due to modest economic growth, increased efficiency, growing domestic oil production, and biofuels

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Under the Reference case, domestic crude oil production is expected to grow by more than 20% over the coming decade; already, domestic crude oil production increased from 5.1 Over the next 10 years, continued development of tight oil (e.g., Forecasts Fuels Oil Policy

2012 95

Brookhaven study finds carbon availability is a key metabolic factor controlling oil biosynthesis in algae

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Confocal image of the algae Chlamydomonas showing the accumulation of oil droplets (golden dots). Further, details of oil biochemistry in algae have been lacking. Oil output would increase, but the algae would stop growing—not an ideal outcome for continuous production.

2012 100

Argentina’s YPF and Bridas, 50% owned by CNOOC, to invest $1.5B in Vaca Muerta shale oil development in Argentina

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Argentina state-owned energy company YPF and Bridas, an Argentina-based oil and gas company 50% owned by China National Offshore Oil Corporation, agreed to invest $1.5 While most of the development is targeting unconventional oil will, a portion will be for wet gas exploitation.

Shell to proceed with Quest carbon capture and storage (CCS) project in the oil sands

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Shell will proceed with the first carbon capture and storage (CCS) project for an oil sands operation in Canada. The Athabasca Oil Sands project produces bitumen, which is piped to Shell’s Scotford Upgrader near Edmonton, Alberta.

Imperial Oil approves $2B in situ oil sands expansion project

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Imperial Oil Limited has approved a $2 billion expansion of the company’s Cold Lake in situ oil sands operation in northeastern Alberta. Imperial’s Cold Lake facility is the largest and longest-running in situ oil sands operation in Canada, and includes four steam generation and bitumen production plants. The expansion, called Nabiye, will bring on additional commercial bitumen production of more than 40,000 barrels per day at Cold Lake.

Enbridge to invest $6.2B in pipeline expansions for light oil from North Dakota and Canada

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will proceed with a $6.2-billion program of pipeline expansions to carry an additional 400,000 barrels per day (bpd) of light oil from North Dakota and western Canada to refinery markets in Ontario, Quebec and the US Midwest. Based on increased availability of western light oil supplies, and attractive pricing relative to US Gulf Coast sourced supply, Chicago-area refineries are shifting to the west as their primary light oil supply source. Enbridge Inc.

Russia’s Rosneft to invest $16B to develop Carabobo 2 extra-heavy crude in Venezuela; first oil from Junin

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Daily crude oil production is expected to be approximately 450,000 barrels per day, according to Rosneft. Oil-in-place at the blocks is approximately 6.5 oil sands). The US Geological Survey (USGS) characterizes extra-heavy oil as having an API gravity of less than 10°.

USGS releases first shale-oil and shale-gas resource potential assessment for the Alaska North Slope

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The US Geological Survey has released its first estimate of the potential of undiscovered, technically recoverable onshore shale oil and gas resources in Alaska’s North Slope. However, these shales also likely retain oil and gas that did not migrate.

Cellulosic ethanol from oil palm empty fruit bunch

Green Car Congress

Researchers from Malaysia and Japan report on an efficient method of producing the cellulosic ethanol from oil palm waste in the Pertanika Journal of Tropical Agricultural Science. Oil palm empty fruit bunch is an abundant biomass waste, with 15 million tonnes generated annually by palm oil mills in Malaysia alone. Usually it is burnt in incinerators to obtain bunch ash or dumped for mulching in oil palm plantations.

BP Statistical Review finds global oil share down for 12th year in a row, coal share up to highest level since 1969; renewables at 2%

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Oil remains the world’s leading fuel, but its 33.1% seen in 2010, according to the newly released BP Statistical Review of World Energy, 2012. Oil demand grew by less than 1%—the slowest rate amongst fossil fuels—while gas grew by 2.2%, and coal was the only fossil fuel with above average annual consumption growth at 5.4% The fossil fuel mix continues to change with oil, the world’s leading fuel at 33.1% Coal Fuels Natural Gas Nuclear Oil Power Generation

Rice team develops thermal nano-oil with high thermal conductivity and good insulation properties

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Rice University scientists have created a nano-infused mineral oil that could greatly enhance the ability of devices as large as electrical transformers and as small as microelectronic components to shed excess heat. of h-BN in mineral oil enhanced thermal conductivity by nearly 80%; at 0.01

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Neste Oil inaugurates Europe’s first pilot plant for producing microbial oil from waste and residues

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Neste Oil celebrated the official opening of Europe’s first pilot plant for producing microbial oil from waste and residues at its site in Porvoo, Finland. Microbial oil produced from industrial and agricultural residues such as straw represents one of the most promising future raw materials for NExBTL renewable diesel, the company said. —Lars Peter Lindfors, Neste Oil’s Senior Vice President, Technology.