The oil shortage in the back story

Discussion in 'General Fallout Discussion' started by KillerBee256, Sep 8, 2010.

  1. KillerBee256

    KillerBee256 Still Mildly Glowing

    212
    Oct 31, 2008
    I was bored earlier today so I was reading the back story on vault, I have a feeling that devs simple didn't think of it but why did not the US, the European Commonwealth, China and other world power not just starting producing oil from coal reserves once the major oul reserves ran out? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coal_liquefaction it seems like it would become far more commercially viable once oil started to run out.
     
  2. Faceless Stranger

    Faceless Stranger Board Drifter

    Aug 19, 2010
    Perhaps, they already ran out of coal?
     
  3. overtake

    overtake First time out of the vault

    51
    Apr 7, 2010
    Touché.
     
  4. DirkGently

    DirkGently Still Mildly Glowing

    296
    Jun 2, 2010
    Or the processes were never developed in the alternate history.
     
  5. probably_not_a_mutie

    probably_not_a_mutie First time out of the vault

    57
    Oct 27, 2010
    also if nearly everything is atomic powered why did they even need oil to begin with?
     
  6. Brother None

    Brother None This ghoul has seen it all
    Staff Member Admin Orderite

    Apr 3, 2003
    Coal liquification isn't very efficient and would have a lot of problems taking over a significant drop in oil output.

    Because it is unlikely all machinery has been adapted for the use of atomic power, and energy isn't the only use of oil.
     
  7. probably_not_a_mutie

    probably_not_a_mutie First time out of the vault

    57
    Oct 27, 2010
    are you coming onto me?
     
  8. Brother None

    Brother None This ghoul has seen it all
    Staff Member Admin Orderite

    Apr 3, 2003
    I was thinking more of the different uses of oil as a raw resource in the chemical and heavy industry, but sure, that too.
     
  9. probably_not_a_mutie

    probably_not_a_mutie First time out of the vault

    57
    Oct 27, 2010
    Oooooooooooookkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk I'll get my harness
     
  10. palmerwmd

    palmerwmd It Wandered In From the Wastes

    163
    Sep 10, 2009
    Coal liquetfication roughly becomes economical when the pre tax price of gas is around 5-6 dollars in todays dollars, which works out to about 160-180 dollars per barell of light+ sweet crude .

    These are approximations give or take a few percent depending on the quality and cost of the feedstock coal.

    The US has the largest reserves of coal in the world and the highest quality of cooal in the world and the cheapest to mine ( close to surface in thick layers) coal in the world.
    We are the Saudi Arabia of coal.

    As the oil prices rises you willsee big money being spent on CTL technologies.

    I been saying it for 20 years many yrs and its happening now in the last 3-5 years in the US some major coal-to-liquid plants staring up first for Diesel.

    Those of you that are entering collage if you want guranteed lifetime employment at high salaries go major in chemical engineering or one of it's sub fields..

    This tchenoclogy called the Fischer -Tropsch process works, for example in middle of World War 2 half of all german fuels were from coal.
    Late in the War even more as they lost the oil fields at Ploesti to the soviets.

    You can measure the importance of oil by the fact that as late as February 1945 (!!!) Germany still launched a full scale well supported crops size offensive with their best SS Units to break the Blockade of Budapest from the soviet strangle old .

    This was in order to protect the Lake balaton Oilfields from soviet occupation and this was going on while the soviets were less than 60 miles form Berlin.
    But some of the best armoured SS units went to protect the oilfields.

    Also see wikipedia "Battle of Budapest"
     
  11. Bad_Karma

    Bad_Karma Look, Ma! Two Heads!

    364
    Jun 17, 2007
    As far as for the german wiki it says that South-Africas fuel consumption is supported to 33% by this.

    You've also got Oil sand, from which you can get oil. Funnily (one had to ask if Interplay had this in mind) Canada has quite a lot of these.

    Other than that i recently saw some documentation about how there might be an abitotic reproduction of oil. Some russian oil field went dry somewhere in time but filled up again at a later point.
    But the whole thing seems to be controversial and even when it happens it might not be enough to satisfy the world demand.

    Again for the question why nuclear power can't replace oil. (As Brother None more or less allready said).
    Oil is also used in the production of plastics and as a lubricant.
    Than again there are some chemists who are developing ways to produce some plastics out of some product from wood, but i don't know how viable this is.

    And as DirkGently also suggested it might be that such process where never invented in this alternate universe.
     
  12. palmerwmd

    palmerwmd It Wandered In From the Wastes

    163
    Sep 10, 2009
    Yes SouthAfrica spent the money to build up it's CTL Fischer tropsch process during the sanctions and now that the investments been amde ahsnt shut it down yet.

    As for oil sands they are partl wishful thinking.
    If you examine the thermodynamics of the process you will find that canadaian oil sands use local natural gas to heat up the tar and covert it. In the end we use up nearly as much natuarl gas energy equivalent as you get out of the oil produced in the oil sands.
    So when properly analyzed ( something that is beyond most US journalism) canadian oil sands really arent so much a source of oil as a method of converting natural gas energy for easier transport into liquid form
     
  13. Bad_Karma

    Bad_Karma Look, Ma! Two Heads!

    364
    Jun 17, 2007
    I haven't read too much about it and i'm more than far from knowing much about it, but i still think this might not be too bad, if we don't need these gases as much as oil (and have bigger deposits or be even able to produce them in some amounts like methane). Especially because oil, as said has other uses than just energy and fuel winning.
    The bigger problem of which i read is the damage to ecosystems and the enviroment itself, because the process of winning oil from oil sand seems to be quite 'dirty'.
    But as said besides i don't know much about it. Only saw one documentation about it and read like 2 short articles (one of which was wikipedia) about it. And i'm very far from having seen any real data about the whole subject.
     
  14. palmerwmd

    palmerwmd It Wandered In From the Wastes

    163
    Sep 10, 2009
    You also bring up the environmental aspect.
    Even as aright wing republican and non environmentalist I can assure that the impact of oil sand extraction is horrendous.

    Where there were beautful creeks and meadows and forests and hills and ducks now there is simply a ... moonscape..

    A bunch of dirty crushed rocks, everything is lebvved no hills no creeks just an expansse of debris.. everywhewre...that land will never again be suitable for habitation by man or beast in our lifeitmes or our grandchildrens lifetimes