July 19, 2006
Greenland and Peak Oil
By: Rowan Wolf
While the article never comes out and says "peak oil," the reality is threaded throughout "Big oil targets Greenland."
Greenland is auctioning exploration rights to areas within the Davis Straits, and they have invited 13 oil companies to bid.
"Some of the world's biggest energy companies, among them Calgary-based EnCana Corp., have gathered in a tiny town on Greenland's west coast to consider developing one of the last untapped offshore oil frontiers."
This "news" that there are few "untapped offshore oil frontiers" is followed later in the article with a quote from Skov Nielsen from Greenland's Bureau of Minerals and Petroleum: "Ice isn't the trouble companies thought it was, oil prices are sky high and companies badly need to replace their reserves with new finds."
Earlier, it had been thought that the Greenland field was not significant enough to drill given the extreme conditions, short operating window, and assumed small reserve. Those conditions have apparently changed with few new finds globally and petroleum at $75 a barrel and sure to go up over time.
Smaller oil companies can count themselves out of the running - both because of cost and because of risk. There is little idea about how much oil might actually be off Greenland, and the conditions are brutal for exploration and exploitation. Richard Dingwall, "an Arctic exploration expert" noted:
"One thing is certain, if that part of Greenland were to be developed, it would have to be done so by the largest companies in the world because costs related to logistics would be immense."
Posted by Rowan at July 19, 2006 6:53 AM Category: Peak Oil