The big news on this coast yesterday was the announcement in Newfoundland that the Hebron field is going into production, meaning potentially billions for Newfoundland and more than a few jobs in construction both before and after first oil. Construction is set to begin in four years and production should begin in 2017.
Read the last sentence in the paragraph above. I’ll flesh it out a bit – construction will only begin after all of the technical hurdles are understood as well as possible and the appropriate gear can be acquired – four years. Construction and on-site prospect development will take another five years. Nine years from this moment to production. In a known, relatively well-understood basin that has been studied for over forty years for oil potential, this process will take nine years.
And yet John McCain has been claiming that new oil can be brought to market through the addition of new leases in unstudied areas “within a matter of months… In some cases, it would be a matter of a year”.
This is such an outrageous statement that John McCain reveals himself both as a fool and a liar. Contrary to what you read coming out of Necropublican Central, there are no known oil fields waiting to be tapped in ANWAR. The seismic data in some areas of the Arctic indicate the potential for thick sediments, favourable for the accumulation of oil and gas, but no fields have been found in ANWAR because no exploration has been done due to the restrictions currently in place. Therefore what John McCain is talking about is taking a virgin prospect about which almost nothing is known and somehow hastening the process that took thirty years on the Grand Banks to get to Hibernia, a few more for Terra Nova, and then another fifteen or twenty to Hebron.
And this is going to be done in seas that are ice-choked for half of the year? Within a year we are going to discover, test-drill, delineate a field, and then spud a well in ocean floor subject to permafrost and untold and as yet not well-understood engineering hazards in a year? IN A YEAR? Perhaps McCain means to imply that Americans can somehow do this work much faster than we pokey, how’sitgoinbuddy Canadians can? Maybe, but wait, who’s names do I see on the Hebron lease? Is that ExxonMobil and Chevron?
John McCain is a disingenuous fool, who obviously knows nothing about the industry that has him in its pocket. Undoubtedly, this is just how the oil industry likes it’s presidents, but do you really think you want four years with someone this out-of-touch at the helm?
Okay, four more?