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Natural gas Prices to remain low

Glen Aspen_2
Glen Aspen_2 Member Posts: 53
The article posted by Dan (via newsletter) raises several issues - but also leaves a few wandering in the mist. What I thought most interesting though was the covert suggestion that nat gas producers need some sort of economic hand out to remain viable. In a similar article just this week in the Edmonton Journal the same topic was probed - and yes it mentioned the same factors; and added a few other wrinkles. It is agreed that there is a oversupply here in NA, partially due to aggressive drilling and exploration - bringing much more gas to the well head; but also partially due to the fact that consumer gas (that's you and me) consumption has fallen off over the summer. The oversupply is further aggravated by NA storage facilities are at full capacity or near full capacity - which means less gas is flowing into the purchase gas pipelines. LNG was also mentioned as a contributing factor to the low prices and while it is hoped that it will be the long term saviour of consumers - our capacity to process LNG from overseas is still dismally low - existing plants are few and it takes 10 - 15 years to bring a large scale plant on stream. It is my thought that LNG is a minor player - causing just a small ripple in the bigger pond. So yes - prices will remain around the $6/1000 cf, which is the magic "break even" price of production - or so they say. More importantly is the grand job coal producers and coal consumers have done in their efforts to be portrayed as a "Clean" fossil fuel. "Clean coal" is an oxymoron of the highest sort. Take for instance the discussion around our Oil Sands projects - which have been identified as "Dirty". Put aside all other arguements for a moment and consider this: the carbon foot print of the oil sands is only about 5 - 10% of the total carbon footprint of all other industries here in Alberta. The remainder? Coal fired power generation. Heck we put the power plants on top of the coal seams so that transportation is minimal. It is cheap power - it is not cheap clean power; on either side of the border. The clean coal highly regarded only a varies a few % points of sulpher content to its cousins in the south or east. Coal though does have its attractive side: if we are truly serious about reducing our carbon foot print - worldwide - then coal can be easily identified as the greatest source of air borne carbon derivitives hence the greatest opportunity to clean up our world.


  • Natural gas Prices to remain low

    What you say Glen makes "some" sense,,, but I`ll have trouble believing-it until the day I see pigs-fly!  :-)
  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 22,263
    some of the coal extraction methods

    used in areas of the US leave a lot to desire. I've seen pictures of the mess left behind by the mountain top removal method.

    While I agree it can be burned cleaner with proper equipment, the "raw material" still has to come from somewhere. That part of the industry has been overlooked in the "Clean Coal" ads they run on TV. This link shows some of the problems to be addressed.

    And of course the miners working underground and the hazards they face.

    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
  • Devan
    Devan Member Posts: 138
    Just posted this on another thread

    Thought it may be beneficial to post here as well.

  • Glen
    Glen Member Posts: 855
    Natural gas will become the -

    designer fuel for the rich and ultra wealthy. The rest of us will be humping bags of coal into our basements. Even our oil fired burners will be using coal gas conversion fuels - not the bio friendly fuels we are hoping for. Have a look at this site and then compare that to the hot economies around the world.


    And then here is the electricity production numbers just for Alberta - if you watch this site for a period of time - it is the coal fired generators that are kept at full or near full production. Nat gas even at a preferred rate of $3/gigajoule is too expensive for the utility monopoly.


    I started watching this site to track the wind generation stations  - but it too is a fickle source of energy.

    I don't mind the pigs flying - but the world wide estimate of known and accessible coal reserves is in the "hundreds of years" category - not the two or three decades of the oil reserves.

    So I reiterate - if we want a cleaner world for the long term - then lets clean up coal and the burning of coal - because we will be doing that for a few more centuries.
  • D107
    D107 Member Posts: 1,855
    Won't we need oil more for plastics in the future?

    If there's only a few decades left of oil left, isn't isn't it good that we phase it out asap for cars and heating--won't we need the oil badly for all it's other uses? 
  • Jean-David Beyer
    Jean-David Beyer Member Posts: 2,666
    Remaining oil for plastics.

    I guess it depends on how little oil is left. If it is needed for lubricants, we better not waste it on plastic bottles (use glass instead), plastic bags (use cloth or paper instead), plastic toys (use wood or metal instead), and so on. We will need it for oils and greases instead.

    Forget syntetic oils; synthetic motor oil (tridecane) is made from hydrocarbons extracted from crude oil.
  • Wayco Wayne_2
    Wayco Wayne_2 Member Posts: 2,479
    Don't forget

    Alphalt for making and repaving roads depends on oil too. I was driving around some rough pavement on my scooter this morning and it got me thinking. what will the roads of  the future be made of. Maybe the point will be made moot by the perfection of the solar powered hover craft. :) WW
  • Jean-David Beyer
    Jean-David Beyer Member Posts: 2,666
    edited August 2009
    Future road construction

    Well, lacking asphalt, they could go back to making roads from reinforced concrete.

    Alternatively, they could rearrange suburbs and cities so people lived closer to each other and to where they worked so fewer roads would be required. They could go from city to city on railroads made of steel and powered by electricity as they do in much of Europe.
This discussion has been closed.