Features by Nicholas Newman
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Mexico - A Failed Oil State
There is an awful lot of oil in Mexico to be discovered, but the difficulty is
Mexico’s state oil monopoly Petróleos Mexicanos (PEMEX), has trouble finding it! In 2004, Mexican oil production
had peaked at 3,383,000 barrels per day (bpd), reports PEMEX. Since then Mexican oil production has shown a steady
decline, so by April 2009 output had fallen to 2,642,000 bpd. Unfortunately, for PEMEX it has failed to find new
significant replacement oil reserves to compensate.
The high price of oil
The surging price of oil appears to be at the root of all our economic woes, but
there may be darker days ahead.In recent months, world oil prices have broken the $100 per barrel barrier for crude
oil; it was only spring last year that the price of crude was around the $50 a barrel mark.
oil: an environmental disaster waiting to happen?
US Geological Survey estimates suggest there could be between 44 to 157 billion
barrels of oil and 299 to 1,547 trillion cubic feet of gas, mostly off the Arctic coastlines of Alaska and Russia,
while Jean Laherrère, a French consultant petroleum geologist, forecasts that the Arctic could contain just 50
billion barrels of oil and 1,000 TCF of gas. This would suggest by using the latest drilling technology, perhaps
only 25%-35% of Arctic oil and gas reserves is economically recoverable.
The world's deepest
offshore oil rigs
Chevron's $500m Petronius platform is situated about 130 miles (208km)
southeast of New Orleans. It is located in water depths of 1754ft (535m). The field, discovered in 1995, contains
estimated recoverable reserves of 100 million barrels of oil equivalent.
Striking it lucky
There is a lot of oil in Brazil. This is all due to a string of spectacular
successes Petrobras and its partners have had in the ultra-deep offshore waters of Brazil. The most interesting
finds are located in the pre-salt Santos Basin exploration Block BM-S-11, some 250km (155.3 mi) due south of Rio de
Janeiro, the home of samba and traffic jams.
Operating in the polar regions of the world poses incredible challenges for the
offshore oil and gas sector. Thirty years ago, operating in such extreme weather conditions was considered almost
impossible. In response to these challenges, the industry has become ever more innovative and increasingly
automated, and operating in the world's polar seas is now more commonplace.
Indonesia's Petroleum Industry