Outrun Change

We need to learn quickly to keep up with the massive change around us so we don't get run over. We need to outrun change.

Bakken update – 8/28

 

Image courtesy of DollarPhotoClub.com

Image courtesy of DollarPhotoClub.com

A few articles on what’s going on in Bakken: tougher trafficking laws in effect, Williston Walmart no longer open 24 hours a day, $18 billion in state reserves, and new Williston airport moving forward.

7/8 – Bismarck Tribune – County okays windfarm near Tioga on a split vote – Landowners organized an effort to develop a wind farm which was bought by a commercial company. That effort has now led to a 75 turbine project that has been approved by County commissioners.

Read more…

Wide open frontier, asteroid mining edition

Scientific wizards mining mineral resources from asteroids is one step to make that schedule possible. Image courtesy of DollarPhotoClub.com

Scientific wizards mining mineral resources from asteroids is one step to make that schedule possible. Image courtesy of DollarPhotoClub.com

As a break from the depressing daily news headlines, consider the incremental steps to figure out how to mine the abundant resources on asteroids.

7/17 – Space.com – Asteroid Mining Company’s 1st Satellite Launches from Space Station – Planetary Resources had a small satellite launched from ISS. It was a three unit cubesat measuring 30 x 10 x 10 cm or 12” x 4” x 4”. This will test a variety of systems and techniques that will be needed to mine asteroids. Pulling water and mineral off asteroids is a huge step in expanded space exploration. After this 90 day experiment is over they will launch another cubesat later this year (12” x 8” x 8”) to test the next set of techniques.

Why water?

Read more…

Update on Thunder Spirit wind farm near Hettinger

Your view for the next 25 years. Photo courtesy of DollarPhotoClub.com

Your view on the farm for the next 25 years. Photo courtesy of DollarPhotoClub.com

In a sort of grand opening, the shell company that owns the Thunder Spirit wind farm invited the community to sign a turbine blade.

8/26 – Dickinson Press – Blade-signing event heralds wind farm near Hettinger – If you want to see how huge wind turbines are and why they are so deadly to birds, you gotta’ check out the photo that goes with the story. The cross-section of the blade, its width, is equal to the height of the people signing the blade.

The article quotes the Lt. Governor, Congressional representative, and county commissioner waxing philosophically how wonderful the economic impact will be from the wind farm.

Article does not contain any comment from the pair of golden eagles nesting two miles from a planned turbine. The couple did not provide any newsworthy quotes regarding the impact of the wind farm on their life expectancy.

Some other info on the Thunder Spirit slice-and-dice farm near Hettinger, North Dakota: Read more…

Open frontier, energy edition, 8/24

Two rigs on same pad. Photo by James Ulvog.

Two rigs on same pad. Photo by James Ulvog.

In spite of dropping prices for crude oil and turmoil in the energy markets, the long-term trend of abundant oil and gas is encouraging. The oil ‘glut’ isn’t going away, meaning we will have abundant crude for quite a while, and refracking may open the door to recovery of even more gas and oil.

7/6 – Bloomberg Business – Refracking Is the New Fracking – Graph of estimated production from shale oil guesses output will rise from about 2.2M bopd in 2012 to under 3.5M bopd now to 5.5M bopd each year from about 2018 to 2023. Then production will tail off to about 4.5M bopd from 2032 through 2040.

That is somewhere in the range of around 48 billion barrels of oil that was untouchable a decade ago. My untouchable I mean there-is-noway-we-will-ever-get-to-that-stuff untouchable. (Calc as a very rough average of 4.5M bopd x 365 days a year x 29 years {2040 less 2012}.)

It is possible refracking might come close to doubling that output.

Read more…

Swapping new solar farms for existing coal & nuclear plants will increase cost of electricity

Wind farm at a moment when the backup gas turbines can sit idle. Picture courtesy of DollarPhotoClub.com

Wind farm at a moment during the day when the backup gas turbines can sit idle. Picture courtesy of DollarPhotoClub.com

The forced push to replace coal and nuclear power with wind will cost consumers dearly.

8/9 – Wall Street Journal – The Price Tag For Uprooting America’s Electric Grid – A new study from the Institute for Energy Research (IER) looks at the cost of constructing new energy sources with the cost from existing sources.

This is a big deal because the EPA’s goal of transforming the power grid will require shutting down a tremendous amount of already-operating plants and replacing that power with brand-new, intermittent, renewable power. That means shutting down existing coal plants and building new wind farms.

Bottom line is we will be shutting down conventional coal that produces electricity at $38.40 per megawatt-hour (mWh) in exchange for new wind farms at an all-in cost of $112.80/mWh.

Here are the costs calculated in the study, in dollars per mWh: Read more…

FWS: Complying with federal law would be just toooooo difficult, so guess I’ll just ignore it. Federal Judge: Guess again.

Bald eagle at Minot zoo who isn't at risk of getting chopped up by a wind turbine. Photo by James Ulvog.

Bald eagle at Minot zoo who isn’t at risk of getting chopped up by a wind turbine. Photo by James Ulvog.

Turns out that Fish and Wildlife Service can’t just let the wind industry kill off eagles for 30 years without considering the environment issues because understanding the impact would be too hard to figure out.

8/13 – Courthouse News Service – Judge Rules for Eagles Over Wind Power – The Fish and Wildlife Service decided that when it gave special dispensation to wind farms to kill off a few eagles here and there they could grant permission for 30 years instead of the 5 years currently allowed. Under current rules, after the five-year limit expires the permission would be reviewed before allowing another 5 year to off a bunch of eagles.

Read more…

Follow up on Zimbabwe hyperinflation – Government introduces coins for making change

 

ten trillion Zimbabwe dollars. Not the largest currency in circulation, but close.

Ten trillion Zimbabwe dollars. Not the largest currency in circulation, but close. Government is withdrawing them at rate of Zim$250T to US$1.

When I described This is what hyperinflation looks like, I mentioned the Zimbabwe government was withdrawing all currency from circulation. They were exchanging 250 trillion Zimbabwe paper dollars for one US dollar.

The $10 trillion bill, pictured above is worth US$0.04.

For many years US dollars and South African Rands have been used as the de facto currency. The two Rand coin is worth about $.16 so the one and two Rand coins are used for making change.

With the Rand depreciating after having been stable for a long time, there is need for another way to make change.

Read more…

50,000 wells to go in North Dakota?

 

Drilling rig in North Dakota. Photo by Melisa Ulvog.

50,000 more wells over the next 25 years? Drilling rig in North Dakota. Photo by Melisa Ulvog.

Guesses on the total number of wells expected to be drilled in the Bakken and Three Forks keep increasing.

8/14 – Amy Dalrymple at Oil Patch Dispatch – 10,000 Bakken wells drilled, 50,000 to go, Helms says – Try this on for size – The wells drilled to this point in Bakken field are one-sixth of the total that will eventually be drilled.

For every well in place, there are five more that will be drilled.

Read more…

Update on marijuana regulation – #18

Image courtesy of DollarPhotoClub.com

Image courtesy of DollarPhotoClub.com

I haven’t seen much news on the legalized marijuana industry lately. Maybe I’ve not been paying enough attention.

For a reminder, the reason I’m talking about this issue is my hypothesis that overregulation will severely constrain this brand new industry. This is a natural experiment on how regulation affects an industry.

6/22 – Bloomberg Business – This Survey Says That Marijuana Prices Are Crashing in Colorado – Article cites a survey by a brokerage firm providing the following estimates of recreational marijuana prices at retail: Read more…

8/15 Update – Status of federal charges against Keith Graves

Image courtesy of DollarPhotoClub.com

Image courtesy of DollarPhotoClub.com

A federal grand jury has returned a third superseded indictment against Keith Graves. As you recall, he has been charged with multiple counts of human trafficking in federal court. He is representing himself as he prepares for his trial which is still scheduled to start October 19, 2015.

The third update to the indictment adds two new items: an 11th count for trafficking another person and a forfeiture allegation.

Read more…

More news on the growing damage from Germany’s energy plan

offshore wind farm the east China sea. Image courtesy of DollarPhotoClub.com

offshore wind farm the east China sea. Image courtesy of DollarPhotoClub.com

Keep your eyes even partially open and you will see coverage of how poorly the plan to dump nuclear and rely on wind is working for Germany.

6/30 – The American Interest – Germany’s Energiewende Finds the Sour Spot – Germany’s official plan of energiewende is making everyone unhappy. Read more…

More graphs on activity in Bakken – 8/15

(Shaky videography and editing by James Ulvog)

Yesterday mentioned that oil production in North Dakota during June increased slightly to the second highest on record.

The wellhead price of crude in North Dakota has dropped again as has the WTI and Brent indices.

Here is a graph of prices in North Dakota:

crude prices 08-15

 

Here is a graph of the fracklog, wells waiting for completion. Read more…

Crude oil production in North Dakota increases slightly in June ’15 to second highest amount ever

(Shaky videography and editing by James Ulvog)

Production of crude in the state increased to 1,211,180 bopd (prelim) in June from 1,202,615 bopd (final) in May. That is up 8,565 bopd. Only  month with higher average production was December 2014 at 1,227,529 bopd.

production 6-15

Keep in mind the goal of the Saudis when they kicked off the price war was to take Bakken production off the table. I don’t think the results above are quite what they had in mind.

Read more…

“Everybody point and laugh” at Peak Oil doctrine – #41

What oil production curve should have been for last decade according to Peak Oil doctrine. Image courtesy of DollarPhotoClub.com

What oil production curve should have been for last couple of decades according to Peak Oil doctrine.  Image courtesy of DollarPhotoClub.com

Ridicule is the appropriate way to address the false idea that oil production follows a bell curve and at any moment production will drop off and head to zero. Gonna’ happen any hour now. It is an undisputed scientific certainty…

Only problem is the inconvenient truth that production has consistently blown out every prediction from the peak oilists. It’s almost like the entire concept is bogus.

8/11 – Ronald Bailey, author of The End of Doom, at Reason – Peak Oilers Shut Up Forever Please One of the main apostles of Peak Oil precisely calculated the peak of oil production would be Thanksgiving Day in 2005 with an inevitable, unavoidable decline thereafter.

The absolute peak production, never to be seen again?

85M bopd.

Please remember Peak Oil doctrine clearly states that production will drop the day after the peak and enter a bell shape curve decline, quickly heading to zero. Production graphs are supposed to have already resembled the image at the top of this post.

Petroleum liquids in July 2015?

Read more…

Biased, slanted, propagandistic updates on Central African Republic

Central African Republic outline inset into a map of Africa over a white background

Central African Republic. Image courtesy of DollarPhotoClub.com

Media coverage of the tragedy in Central African Republic is taking on a slanted, agenda-laded bias worthy of American media in a U.S. presidential race.

(I have been sitting on this post for months. Think it is time to post.)

Shouldn’t be necessary, but I suppose it is necessary to say I denounce the destruction of religious houses of worship, especially when such facilities are targeted because they are houses of worship. I also denounce violence targeted against people because of the way they worship.

Let me know if you think the following articles are talking about the same country.

Read more…

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