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oils ain't oils sol!!!

  1. 852 Posts.
    Some very interesting "Stats".


    The good oil on Iraq's black gold

    Stephen Mayne and Kate Jackson
    Keeping an eye on George Dubya's Oilies

    With war in the Middle East looming we look at the top ten oil producing nations and their proven reserves, and consider just who is influencing foreign policy in the Bush administration.

    January 31, 2003

    The good oil on Iraq's black gold
    Biggest oil producing countries
    There has been much discussion of late about the motivation of a US led attack on Iraq. Many people have mentioned oil as a motivation, but who really knows which countries produce the most oil and which have the largest reserves? We have compiled a list of the top 10 crude oil producing countries and the countries top 10 crude oil reserves (and those just outside the top 10).

    World crude oil production by country in 2001 (barrels daily)

    1. Saudi Arabia - 8,768,000
    2. USA - 7,717,000
    3. Russian Federation - 7,056,000
    4. Iran - 3,688,000
    5. Mexico - 3,560,000
    6. Venezuela - 3,418,000
    7. Norway - 3,414,000
    8. China - 3,308,000
    9. United Kingdom - 2,503,000
    10.Iraq - 2,414,000

    11. United Arab Emirates - 2,422,000
    12. Nigeria - 2,148,000
    13. Kuwait - 2,142,000
    14. Libya - 1,425,000
    15. Indonesia - 1,410,000

    World proven crude oil reserves by country in 2001 (thousand million barrels)

    1. Saudi Arabia - 261.8
    2. Iraq - 112.5
    3. United Arab Emirates - 97.8
    4. Kuwait - 96.5
    5. Iran - 89.7
    6. Venezuela - 77.7
    7. Russian Federation - 48.6
    8. USA - 30.4
    9. Libya - 29.5
    10.Mexico - 26.9

    11. Nigeria - 24.0
    12. China - 24.0
    13. Qatar - 15.2
    14. Norway - 9.4

    Stats from BP's Stastical Review of World Energy

    In the PDF file "table of proved reserves at end 2001" you'll see how Iraq's proven reserves have rocketed from 29.7 billion barrels in 1981 to 112.5 billion barrels in 2000 - second only to Saudi Arabia which has 261.7 billion barrels.

    The key statistic here is that Iraq is the tenth biggest producer but has the second largest amount of proven reserves. Given that the Bush administration is full of oilies, it does suggest that oil is a big motivation in the move to oust Saddam.

    In other words, Saddam is sitting on proven oil reserves worth an incredible US$3 trillion based on current oil prices (+US$30).

    At the moment the French, Chinese and Russians are best positioned to exploit this. No wonder they are reluctant to back George W and let Exxon, Chevron, Texaco and the like in there.

    The USA's proven oil reserves have fallen from 36.5 billion barrels to 30.1 billion over the past 20 years whilst NAFTA has dropped from 102 billion barrels to just 64.8 billion, presumably due to all that Yankee gas-guzzling as the economy has boomed.

    The ratio of NAFTA reserves to annual USA oil consumption has never been lower. If the Yanks were only relying on NAFTA, their annual consumption of 7 billion barrels would suck the whole of North America dry in less than 10 years.

    Yet Saddam is sitting on decades worth of US oil consumption. When you've got an administration full of oilies and these are the cold, hard facts, it is very hard to dismiss the widely held view that this war is all about oil.

    Meanwhile, pitiful Australia only has 2.9 billion barrels in proven reserves and we've recently given East Timor a slice of this, although the treaty is still to be signed. The Yanks certainly won't be invading if Simon Crean or Bob Brown ever became Prime Minister.

    What others are saying:

    The topic of America's oil obsession is also gaining mainstream coverage in the media. Tony Walker observed in the Fin Review on 31 January that, "The US is a net importer of 52 per cent of its oil requirements. By contrast, Australia imports about 8 per cent of its oil requirements, most of that form Asia, with a small amount from the Middle East.

    No great arguments there for Australia's legions to march across the desert sands of Iraq, although Australian officials in Canberra are understood to have had preliminary talks with their American counterparts in Washington about the possibility of BHP and Woodside sharing in some of the post-war action in Iraq.

    The gas guzzling US consumes more than 25 per cent of oil produced worldwide. And where does the US get its oil imports? In 2000, nearly 55 per cent of US gross oil imports came from four countries: 15 per cent from Canada, 14 per cent from Saudi Arabia and Venezuela and 12 per cent from Mexico. Iraq supplied 5 per cent to 6 per cent.

    But - and this is a huge "but" - according to the US Energy departments own projections, the US and its major trading partners are set to become much more dependent on Gulf oil over the nest two decades."

    Meanwhile the eleven members of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) are still collectively suppling about 40 per cent of the world's oil output, and possess more than three-quarters of the world's total proven crude oil reserves. At the end of 1999, OPEC had proven reserves of 811,526 million barrels of crude oil, representing 77.8 per cent of the world total of 1,042,536 million barrels.

    The member countries are Algeria, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Libya, Nigeria, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Venezuela. There are a few countries with which the US has deliberately cultivated relationships, such as Kuwait and Saudi Arabia. Not countries you would expect the US to be friends with if oil were not in the equation.

    Bush's oil industry connections

    It is well known that George W. followed his father into the Texas oil business years before following him into the White House. But the links between his administration and the oil industry do not stop there.

    Vice President Dick Cheney previously served as chairman and chief executive of Halliburton Co., the world's largest oilfield services company, which has operations in Azerbaijan. Cheney and Commerce Secretary Donald Evans both ran energy-related companies, earning millions of dollars.

    National security adviser Condoleezza Rice, was on Chevron's board of directors from 1991 until January of this year, and has a company oil tanker named after her.

    Christine Todd Whitman, the administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, owns interests in oil wells in Texas and Colorado valued at between $55,000 and $175,000. She has promised to divest of them to meet ethics guidelines.

    Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld has between $3.25 million and $15.5 million worth of investments in energy-related companies. He is divesting himself of many financial holdings but has not provided details.

    The law firm of former Secretary of State James Baker, a Bush family adviser, represented several oil companies with interests in Azerbaijan, among them Exxon-Mobil Corp.

    Brent Scowcroft, a Rice adviser who was national security adviser in the administration of Bush's father, has industry connections that include sitting on the boards of Pennzoil-Quaker State Co. and Enron Global Power & Pipelines, a unit of Enron Corp.

    Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage is a former co-chairman of the U.S.-Azerbaijan Chamber of Commerce.

    With such strong oil connections in the administration it is very hard to imagine how access to Middle East oil reserves could not be a large factor in Bush's decision to go to war. Not to mention the fact that many of these large energy companies donated money to the Republican Party. After all, it wasn't long ago that former head of Enron, Kenneth Lay and the President were best friends.

    Analysis: Oil and the Bush cabinet news.bbc.co.uk

    Cheers markco

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