Statistically Speaking: New Fuel Resources – Worth Drilling For?by Bill Chameides | June 19th, 2009
posted by Erica Rowell (Editor)
Permalink | 1 comment
Yesterday the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee approved a bill that would allow drilling in the eastern Gulf of Mexico. The bill would shrink the no-drill buffer from a minimum of 100 miles to as little as 25 miles off the coast in a region that currently is off-limits to drilling until 2022.
What’s the Potential Gain?
Potential total amount of energy (in BTUs) from the eastern Gulf of Mexico’s technically undiscovered oil resource: 22,400 trillion
Potential total amount of energy (in BTUs) from the eastern Gulf of Mexico’s technically undiscovered natural gas resource: 22,660 trillion
Approximate amount of petroleum (in BTUs) consumed annually by Americans: 42,300 trillion
Approximate amount of natural gas (in BTUs) consumed annually by Americans: 23,900 trillion
About how long petroleum from the eastern Gulf of Mexico could supply the petroleum portion of Americans’ energy needs: 6 months
About how long natural gas from the eastern Gulf of Mexico could supply the natural gas portion of Americans’ energy needs: less than 1 year
Two Items to Note
Potential oil and natural gas resources, officially referred to in the industry as “technically undiscovered recoverable resources,” are of a highly speculative nature, and typically produce a smaller fraction than the total amount of fuel believed to be in the ground. (Learn more in our oil glossary.)
Our statistical treatment lays out how long the potential resources would meet our needs if they could hypothetically be accessed in one go. Practically speaking, production would require a number of years, so the actual benefit in any one year would be much smaller.filed under: energy, faculty, natural gas, oil, policy, politics, Statistically Speaking
and: legislation, oil drilling, oil reserves, oil resources, U.S. Congress