Firm touts low-water shale recovery

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  • bob
    Aug. 18, 2008 4:27 p.m.

    To: Ernest T. Bass

    Actually the cost of oil shale production is much cheaper per barrel than the price of oil now. Water is an issue, but processes cannot be developed at large scales unless they are allowed to be developed by the government and the public. Many seem to use lack of large scale information as a barrier for development. Without development, there is no information at these scales, so ... well, maybe in China.

  • DrainAmericaFirst!
    Aug. 18, 2008 7:20 a.m.

    "Drill and Pump Now";
    Yeah, the Sierra Clubbers, as "commies under the bed", want us to live like people in the Mideast, where vast amounts of power are used to maintain an arificial ski run inside of a building. Outside the building, it's 120 degrees.
    Your post sounds pretty much like a temper tantrum, all right, but is completely nonsensical.

  • TO: water + electricity
    Aug. 17, 2008 4:45 p.m.

    What's wrong with a little coal? Utah has ample reserves. Now I know the enviros get excited about it, yet seem happy to let the Chinese produce all of what we buy here in the USA. As the enviros know, China has incredibly-high growth plans for coal-burning plants. It is their main source of electrical power.

    If we want to develop alternative fuel sources and, for that matter, sufficient power supplies, coal needs to be a player.

  • where is it?
    Aug. 17, 2008 11:26 a.m.

    What eveer happened to the enviormental safe process which was proved years ago by RAMAX? (a process developed here in Utah) I understand that the process was sold to a South American firm that is using it rather successfully.

  • liberal Larry
    Aug. 17, 2008 10:55 a.m.

    It would be prudent to allow small test plots to find ways to safely recover the kerogen in the "oil" shale. The problem is that conservatives have shown such an aversion to responsible oversight that many of us fear that oil firms will trash our beautiful western landscape. The incompetent Bush administration has damaged our governments reputation nationally, and internationally.

  • Drill and Pump Now
    Aug. 17, 2008 9:40 a.m.

    Why even bother quoting the Sierra Club in an article about producing energy. They are run by Marxists who would rather us live like the folks in the Mideast anyway. If it involves the real production of energy they are not interested. They are uninterested in a plan that moves to renewable energy over time. Like a two year old it is their way or temper tantrum.

  • water + electricity
    Aug. 17, 2008 9:37 a.m.

    Recovering oil from shale not only requires lots of water, it also requires lots of electrical power.

    The article only made brief mention about a "generator" being required if the site isn't on the power grid. What wasn't mentioned was how large the generator would need to be - hundreds of megawatts is not unreasonable for full-scale oil shale recovery.

    Can you just plug into the local grid and expect 300 - 600 megawatts as soon as the meter's hooked up? Not a prayer. Even with power lines running through your site you'll be told that you either need to pay for your own power generation or pay the power company to build new generating capacity for you.

    And how will all that current be generated? They'll burn coal. It's insane.

  • Ernest T. Bass
    Aug. 17, 2008 9:16 a.m.

    People are complaining about gas prices right now. Wait until they find out the cost of getting oil from this process. Might as well sell the house to pay for a tank of gas made this way.

  • Joe
    Aug. 17, 2008 8:29 a.m.

    "To base our future on unproven technologies is not a wise choice," LeGate said.

    And yet, alternative energy largely relies upon unproven technology. If you don't try something like this oil shale extraction technology on a reasonable scale, then you can simply never verify how much water may or may not be required to produce energy from this resource.

    Most of the water required for these processes us used by the workers who live in the area, and for dust suppression during mining. Although this may not be our "best" energy option, it needs to be allowed to progress to see if it is indeed a viable alternative energy source.

  • samhill
    Aug. 17, 2008 7:59 a.m.

    Just for the sake of clarification, it should be noted that the "Miller" dealership mentioned above is that of MARK Miller, not Larry Miller.

  • let's hope it works
    Aug. 17, 2008 7:34 a.m.

    KSL had a shocking story the other day about how the Miller car dealership's new "green building" in Salt Lake City includes a rain/snow melt recovery cistern that is ILLEGAL in Utah because harvesting water falling on your property does NOT BELONG TO YOU! That means all the houses in Utah that recover rain water in barrels off their rooftops are breaking the law as well. In short, you need water permits to take rain water off your property -- stems from an old law from the 1800s so that farms downstream (southern Utah) would have water allocated and upstream folks (northern Utah) wouldn't take it all! With Utah being the second driest state in the Union, how water is allocated to this new oil shale industry with agriculture AND coal-fired power will be a key issue. What's not factored into this equation is all the energy necessary to extract oil -- and coal-fired power is a significant water user in the state. With more electric power created for the oil shale process, another allocation of water needs to be factored into this equation!