Offshore Oil Deposit Holds Out on the Human Race

This week’s post, There is Plenty of Oil, generated a heated discussion about the finer points of peak oil and oil reserves.  In line with oil reserves, I noted that offshore deposits are unlikely to sustain global oil consumption or even delay the oil peak predicted originally by Hubbert.  Less than one year ago, the chariman for Global Petroleum was speaking optimistically about a Woodside-Dana-Global Petroleum joint venture, that would begin developing Kenya’s offshore oil fields.

Dr. Armstrong said that the Kenya acreage has the potential to become a significant oil region:

  • Woodside currently regards Kenya as having “multiple large structural prospects” (November 2005 Woodside presentation);
  • Woodside’s mapping and seismic surveys have identified more than 30 prospects and leads, a number of which are each capable of holding several hundred million to a billion barrels of recoverable oil;
  • The first prospect to be drilled is likely to be Pomboo in L-5 and the second possibly Sokwe in L-7;
  • Both prospects have reservoir objectives in rocks of Cretaceous and Tertiary age which elsewhere in the world contain a large proportion of the world’s known oil and gas reserves;

Hooray! We are saved! Honey, gas up my Hummer!

But today…Disappointment sets in over the ambitious exploration project.

101 million dollars later…

This precedes the decision by Woodside and its partners to call-off the second oil exploration venture in Kenya last month.

The first oil exploration costing 7 billion shillings that began in October last year failed to find oil or gas.

But what about all those promising prospects and the several billion barrels of oil?  Apparently it was a waste of time for Chikyu. 

3 Replies to “Offshore Oil Deposit Holds Out on the Human Race”

  1. I understand “significant” to mean “so much that it’s not a drop in the ocean compared to Saudi Arabia, Iraq, or Iran.” which is good news as far as it goes.

    But deposits capable of removing the peak to a distant future would have to be *far greater* than Saudi Arabia, Iraq, or Iran. So I’m never impressed by news of “significant” oil finds, even if they do deliver on their promises. Which as you say, they haven’t, again.

  2. Since when did anecdote become a scientific form of argument? Deep Sea News would be much better off sticking to science.

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