"Drill shafts into the oil-bearing rock. Drop heaters down the shaft. Cook the
rock until the hydrocarbons boil off, the lightest and most desirable first.
Please note, you don't have to go looking for oil fields when
you're brewing your own.
On one small test plot about 20 feet by 35 feet, on
land Shell owns, they started heating the rock in early 2004. "Product" - about
one-third natural gas, two-thirds light crude - began to appear in September
2004. They turned the heaters off about a month ago, after harvesting about
1,500 barrels of oil.
While we were trying to do the math, O'Connor told us
the answers. Upwards of a million barrels an acre, a billion barrels a square
mile. And the oil shale formation in the Green River Basin, most of which is in
Colorado, covers more than a thousand square miles - the largest fossil fuel
deposits in the world.
One-freaking-trillion barrels. Go Shell, go.
I still want a hybrid though . . .
Sunday, September 04, 2005
Shell has figured out how to get oil from shale at comercially feasable prices: