The World Energy Watch presents excerpts of analysis and recent news reports highlighting the activities of the players involved in the power struggle for the world’s remaining energy resources and energy sustainability.

1//A sobering look at our future oil situation from Energy and Oil by Byron King tops the news in this week’s edition. Looks like both domestic and imported oil supplies will be drying up by 2025. Then what?

The U.S. Oil Supply — A Look At Our Future Oil Needs

New discoveries and new wells just cannot keep up with depletion of older oil fields. By 2025, U.S. daily oil output will be a fraction of its current level (probably down to about 2-3 million barrels per day), even with an aggressive program of drilling offshore and in Alaska — which is not happening, in any case. … . Also by 2025, U.S. imports will almost certainly decline. The oil will not be available to buy and import from world markets. Not everyone agrees with this. In one fanciful projection from 2005, the U.S. DOE forecast that “Total U.S. gross petroleum imports are projected to increase in the reference case from 12.3 million barrels per day in 2003 to 20.2 million in 2025.” Maybe in somebody’s dreams, but my view is that this is one projection that will never come true. … . Really, by 2025, the rest of the oil-producing world will simply lack the product to export. This will be due to reasons of depletion on a global scale, and fast-growing internal demand in oil-producing nations. Gasoline consumption in places as diverse as Russia, Iran, Venezuela and Saudi Arabia is just soaring, so there is less net oil available for export. … . So what will happen in 2025? Will the U.S. pump its own oil? No, it’s not there. Will the U.S. continue to import large volumes? No, it won’t be available. The bottom line is that conventional oil sources for the U.S. — domestic output and imports — are simply drying up.

2//Agence France Presse (AFP) via The Daily Star, Lebanon reports on a “potato seller” now protects US troops and pipelines in Iraq…Funded by the US, the amount of money he generates from his operation “remains a mystery.”

Iraqi spud king protects Kirkuk pipelines, US troops

Sheikh Abu Saif al-Jubburi is a man to be reckoned with in Iraq’s northern oil hub, where the tribal leader and his 800 men protect strategic pipelines and US troops in the volatile region. Clad in black silk and wearing a shiny gold watch on his wrist, Jubburi welcomes visitors at the gates of his kitsch candy-pink mansion, with its swimming pool, fake crystal chandeliers and monumental staircase. Jubburi is mayor of Multaka, a town between the rebel bastion of Hawija and the northern oil hub of Kirkuk, a flashpoint city riven by ethnic tension. After the US-led invasion of Iraq in 2003, Jubburi left a lucrative trade “selling potatoes” which he says earned him “up to $10,000 a day” to devote himself to guarding roads in areas where there are oil pipelines and keeping the precious crude flowing. … . The tribal chief is certainly among the first to benefit financially from the whole operation, although the amount of revenues he generates is a mystery. But correspondents say that each truck that crosses his turf must pay a $5 tax. Jubburi considers himself as the pioneer of the US-backed “Awakening” front, which fights Al-Qaeda in Iraq and was launched by the US military at the onset of last year using Sunni militiamen, most of whom are former anti-US insurgents. About 7,000 members of the movement, known as sahwa in Arabic, are deployed across Kirkuk’s southwestern oilfields, including 1,300 in Hawija, regional police chief Turhan Yussef said.

3//As reported at Gulfnews.com, China continues to make inroads in the Gulf…

China and Syria sign deal to build refinery

China and Syria have signed an agreement to build a joint venture refinery in eastern Syria, expanding their cooperation to include oil processing, China National Petroleum Corp said in a statement seen yesterday.
The agreement was signed April 2, during a visit to Syria by Li Chang-chun, a member of China’s powerful Politburo, the company said. It calls for state-owned CNPC, China’s biggest oil and gas company, to build a refinery with an annual capacity of five million tonnes (about 110,000 barrels a day), it said.

4//A new gas pipeline from Alaska through Canada to the US is planned…

BP, ConocoPhillips team up to build pipeline from Alaska’s North Slope to U.S. markets through Canada

Two of the world’s largest oil companies announced plans Tuesday to jointly develop a multibillion-dollar natural gas pipeline to move North Slope natural gas to U.S. markets through Canada.
Britain’s BP PLC and ConocoPhillips, based in Houston, said they plan to spend US$600 million in the first phase of the project over the next three years. The plan is to deliver natural gas via a 3,200-kilometre pipeline from the energy rich North Slope in Alaska to Alberta, where it would be fed into transport pipelines to the United States. If necessary, the project would also involve building an additional 2,400-kilometre pipeline to U.S. markets.

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