From 2005 until now I had a lot of time to learn about the different sources of gas feedstock for pipelines and LNG liquefaction plants. But something strange occurred to me. Why the hell do we call Earth crust derived methane Natural Gas and treat everything else as some other form of the same molecular mix.
Scientific chaos is not the same as your ordinary chaos. It simply means that it is impossible to predict exactly what will happen in all but the very simplest systems, even if every detail of its past and current conditions is known.
European natural gas prices are a shambles. The ones say that one can’t make a living under those conditions as the price is to low for comfort.
The others say that it’s to high for gas to be competitive. Who is right? An off the beaten path analysis.
A couple of things were conveniently forgotten by those driving the portfolios. First gravity – everything that goes up eventually will come down. European energy utilities and gas traders deluded themselves into believing that the Bonanza would be never ending.
Road transport might offer ultimate flexibility as one can easily bring anything just about anywhere but when that flexibility is not even needed it comes at a horrendous price.
The main difference between a network model and point to point transport is that the network is a loose system of different nodal points between which lumps of whatever (in our case LNG) zip zap around. These nodal points supply smaller satellite distributors which in turn are the backbone of the supply system.
We cannot easily say that we did not try (in homeopathic doses) to wean ourselves off our addiction to imported hydrocarbons but who wants to take a reduction in lifestyle, even if that meant financing (directly or indirectly) some people that may wish to harm us. In simple words, we gave some of those who might want to kill us money – to increase their ability to do so. Plus our presence on their lands further stoked their ire. Not really smart but a reality we seemed had to live with so far.
No more. The unconventional gas revolution has already done more for US national security than all nation building programs combined.