Monday, July 21, 2008

Gazprom Neft Profits Double

Russia's Gazprom Neft Q1 profit, sales soar.

MOSCOW, July 21 (Reuters) - Russian oil firm Gazprom Neft, the oil arm of gas export monopoly Gazprom, said on Monday its first quarter net profit more than doubled on higher oil prices and higher sales of oil due to an acquisition.

The firm said in a statement its net profit under U.S. Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP) rose by 110 percent to $1.41 billion in the first three months of 2008 compared to the same period a year ago.

Gazprom Neft, Russia's fifth-largest oil producer, said the results were supported by higher oil prices, increased sales of oil and refined products and high refining margins.

Revenues increased by 90 percent to $7.87 billion. Last year's acquisition of half of Tomskneft, a former production subsidiary of bankrupt former rival YUKOS, has allowed Gazprom Neft to boost sales despite flat production, analysts said.

The net profit figure came above some of the analysts' forecasts. Analysts at Renaissance Capital and Citi expected the firm to report net profit of about $1.2 billion.

In the fourth quarter of 2007, Gazprom Neft's net profit was $1.32 billion and revenues amounted to $6.42 billion.

The firm said its earnings before interest, taxation, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) increased by 83.9 percent to $1.92 billion.

"We hope to maintain positive dynamics and boost our financial means to fulfil the company's strategic goals," Gazprom Neft's president Alexander Dyukov said in the statement.

Gazprom Neft also said its capital expenditures rose by 85 percent to $781.2 million in the first quarter of this year. It plans to increase capex by 36 percent to $3.7 billion in the whole year to increase stagnating output.

The firm has been fighting falling production since it was purchased by Gazprom in 2005 from former owner, billionaire Roman Abramovich. Last year's production of around 43 million tonnes was flat on 2006.

The firm said its operating expenses slightly decreased to $510.8 million in the first quarter from $519.8 million in the first three months of last year.
Gazprom Neft Aims to Become Russia’s Leading Oil Producer

Gazprom Neft (GZPFY.PK), the oil production subsidiary of Gazprom (OGZPY.PK), has stated in its 2007 Annual Report that it expects to more than double oil output to 2.0 million barrels per day by 2020 from a production average of 864,000 bpd in 2007. A production figure of 2.0 million bpd would be higher than all other individual Russian oil producers


Anaconda said...


This scientific paper by Jack F. Kenney describes an abiotic oil field, The Drilling and Deveopment of the Oil & Gas fields in the Dnieper-Donetsk Basin.

The scientific analysis and report of observations and data from the oil field is a clear and definitive "proof" of Abiotic Oil.

(Of course, all oil fields are Abiotic -- the key is that this oil field was scientifically investigated with the conscious objective of determining whether oil is abiotic or not. Most oil fields are never investigated with the explicit intent to determine whether oil is Abiotic or not.)

A partial quote from the introduction:

"This specific project has been chosen because it is a "pure" modern project: the geological area explored is one which had been extensively studied in the past and had been previously condemned as possessing no potential for petroleum production; the exploration techniques applied, from the initial work-up, through the well planning, to the production tests have been carried out in ways peculiar to such for abiogenic hydrocarbons in crystalline environments; and the scientific tests upon the petroleum produced were specifically designed to test the assumption that the oil and gas originated at great depth in the Earth."


"For the first 45 year period of the geological study of the Northern Monoclinal Flank of the Dnieper-Donets Basin, its sedimentary, metamorphic, and igneous rock had been condemned as possessing no potential for petroleum production for reasons of the complete absence of any "source rock" (so-called) and the presence of active, strongly-circulating artesian waters. Recently the area was reexamined according to the perspective of the modern theory of deep, abiotic hydrocarbon origins."

A monocline is a step-like fold consisting of a zone of steeper dip within an otherwise horizontal or gently-dipping sequence. If you hyperlink on monocline you will see a diagram of a monocline: What is significant is that it's the result of a fault in the Earth's crust. It is one of many various geological folds in the Earth's crust.

Abiotic Theory predicts petroleum will be found above faults in the Earth's crust.

"[A] total number of 61 wells were drilled, of which 37 are commercially productive, an exploration success rate of 57%."

That success rate is unheard of using "fossil" theory without the aid of seismic imaging. Without seismic imaging (where you can "see" the oil) "fossil" theory has a success rate of 1 producing well for 28 dry holes.

1)Trace metals: "The abundances of the trace metals show a clear correlation and have thereby established that the oil at all levels share a common, deep source, characterized by diffusive separation, regardless of the age, type or circumstance of the particular reservoir rocks."

2)Pollen and spores: "The Paleontology analyses of the oil in the shallower Permian and Upper and Lower Carboniferous sandstone formations have demonstrated the presence of spore-pollen and other microphytofossils of the Devonian and Proterozoic ages, establishing thereby upward [travel] from the deeper formations, which migration is not necessarily correlated to the age of either." This was confirmed by three seperate laboratory analysis.

To clarify, spores and pollen from older ages in the sedimentary stratigraphic column were found in younger and shallower sedimentary levels.

3)Biological test: "Bacteriological analysis of the oil and the examination for so-called “biological marker” molecules: The oil produced from the reservoirs in the crystalline basement rock of the Dnieper-Donets Basin has been examined particularly closely for the presence of either porphyrin molecules or “biological marker” molecules, the presence of which used to be misconstrued as "evidence" of a supposed biological origin for petroleum. None of the oil contains any such molecules, even at the ppm level."

4)Measurement of helium: "The petroleum from all producing reservoirs manifest elevated abundance of helium. The natural gas and oil from, for example, the Yulyovskoye field contain not less than 180,000,000 m3 of helium. Helium is of deep origin and can be transported significant distances in the Earth's crust only by entrainment in another carrier fluid, typically hydrocarbons or hydrocarbons and carbon dioxide or nitrogen together, by which process it becomes concentrated in the carrier fluid."

In conclusion: "These results, taken either individually or together, confirm the scientific conclusions that the oil and natural gas found both in the Precambrian crystalline basement and the sedimentary cover of the Northern Monoclinal Flank of the Dnieper-Donets Basin are of deep, and abiotic, origin."

It should be noted "[f]or the work here reported, the first four authors, who were principally responsible for the discovery of these fields, were awarded the State Prize of Ukraine in the field of Science and Technology in 1993.

There is no credible analysis that refutes this report.

Yes, there are several criticisms, but none "grasp the nettle" by delving into the four specific analysis I have partially quoted above.

Mostly, the criticism is about the "absolute" tone of the introduction to the work -- not the specific results.

Study this report and the Dismissal of the Claims of a Biological Connection for Natural Petroleum to gain an appreciation of the scientific rigor applied by Jack F. Kenney and his colleagues.

The anatomy of an Abiotic Oil Field.

Anaconda said...


The was supposed to be the final "proof" No Free Lunch, Part 3 of 3: Proof against Abiotic Theory.

Here is Australian Geologist Luis Hissink's refutation .

And for comparison purposes here is my independently derived refutation Wednesday, June 11, 2008
Lack Of C13 Isotope Proves Nothing,
comment #2, 6/11/08, 4:32 PM.

Clarke's statements are listed, then Hissink's comment in response:

Clark stated that:

"To deny this [that 99.99999% of the world's liquid hydrocarbons are produced by maturation of organic matter] means you have to come up with good explanations for the following observations. "

1) The almost universal association of petroleum with sedimentary rocks.

Comment: This is contradicted by the Ukrainian Dnieper-Donetsk Basin in which oil is recovered from the underlying crystalline basement (source). However, abiotic oil welling up from the mantle will preferentially invade sedimentary basins that occupy zones of tectonic weakness in the crust.

2) The close link between petroleum reservoirs and source rocks as shown by biomarkers (the source rocks contain the same organic markers as the petroleum, essentially chemically fingerprinting the two).

Comment: Abiotic oil is a primary mantle product and when invading the base of an overlying sedimentary basin, will incorporate all the bio-detritus into it as petroleum is an excellent organic solvent. However abiotic oil from crystalline basement sources does not contain any biomarkers as Kenny et al note "Bacteriological analysis of the oil and the examination for so-called “biological marker” molecules: The oil produced from the reservoirs in the crystalline basement rock of the Dnieper-Donets Basin has been examined particularly closely for the presence of either porphyrin molecules or “biological marker” molecules, the presence of which used to be misconstrued as "evidence" of a supposed biological origin for petroleum. None of the oil contains any such molecules, even at the ppm level. There is also research presently under progress which has established the presence of deep, anaerobic, hydrocarbon metabolizing microbes in the oil from the wells in the uppermost petroliferous zones of the crystalline basement rock in the Dnieper-Donets Basin."

3) The consistent variation of biomarkers in petroleum in accordance with the history of life on earth (biomarkers indicative of land plants are found only in Devonian and younger rocks, that formed by marine plankton only in Neoproterozoic and younger rocks, the oldest oils containing only biomarkers of bacteria).

Comment: Abiotic oil will incorporate the biomarkers of the sedimentary basins it invades, and consequently will also show a consistent variation of biomarkers according to the age of the sediments.

3) The close link between the biomarkers in source rock and depositional environment (source rocks containing biomarkers of land plants are found only in terrestrial and shallow marine sediments, those indicating marine conditions only in marine sediments, those from hypersaline lakes containing only bacterial biomarkers).

Comment: Again abiotic oil when invading marine or terrestrial dispositional environments will also have absorbed or dissolved the specific biomarkers characteristic of those environments.

4) Progressive destruction of oil when heated to over 100 degrees (precluding formation and/or migration at high temperatures as implied by the abiogenic postulate).

Comment: As stated clearly in "The Constraints of the Laws of Thermodynamics upon the Evolution of Hydrocarbons: The Prohibition of Hydrocarbon Genesis at Low Pressures." Abiotic oil is metastable and is thermodynamically incompatible with the low pressures and temperatures of the earth's surface. As abiotic oil has an affinity with diamond (the two come from the same depths, more or less, transition to compatible phases (vis methane) will occur over time, and will accelerate with rising temperature.

(1.) The H-C system which constitutes natural petroleum is a metastable one in a very non-equilibrium state. At low pressures, all heavier hydrocarbon molecules are thermodynamically unstable against decomposition into methane and carbon, - as is similarly diamond into graphite.

(2.) Methane does not polymerize into heavy hydrocarbon molecules at low pressures, at any temperature. Contrarily, increasing temperature (at low pressures) must increase the rate of decomposition of heavier hydrocarbons into methane and carbon.

(3.) Any hydrocarbon compound generated at low pressures, heavier than methane, would be unstable and driven to the stable equilibrium state of methane and carbon.

The first two conclusions have been amply demonstrated by a century of refinery engineering practice. The third conclusion has withstood the test of many attempts in laboratories to convert biotic molecules into hydrocarbons heavier than methane. Kenny op. cit).

Abiotic oil will also show progressive destruction when heated over 100 degrees. It does so because it is metastable at these temperatures. Biogenic theory conspicuously ignores the effect of confining pressure in hydrocarbon stability.

5) The generation of petroleum from kerogen on heating in the laboratory (complete with biomarkers), as suggested by the biogenic theory.

Comment: Biogenic theory "SUGGESTS" that accumulation of zooplankton and algae under anerobic conditions at the base of shallow seas will under diagenesis transform into kerogen? This is thermodynamically impossible so it is up to the biogenic theorisers to present unequivocal laboratory experimental evidence that this process actually occurs in nature. Suggestions that something might occur cannot be falsified - this is pseudoscience. Abiotic theory has nothing to do with the generation of petroleum from kerogen - the origin of kerogen has not been satisfactorily explained and thermodynamically it is impossible to derive it spontaenously from the burial of biomass under diagenesis.

6) The strong enrichment in C12 of petroleum indicative of biological fractionation (no inorganic process can cause anything like the fractionation of light carbon that is seen in petroleum).

This test has been dealt with and refuted and extracted below

The carbon isotope ratios, and their inadequacy as indicators of origin.

The claims made concerning the carbon isotope ratios, and specifically such as purport to identify the origin of the material, particularly the hydrocarbons, are especially recondite and outside the experience of most persons not knowledgeable in the physics of hydrogen-carbon [H-C] systems. Furthermore, the claims concerning the carbon isotope ratios most often involve methane, the only hydrocarbon which is thermodynamically stable in the regime of temperatures and pressures of the Earth’s crust, and the only one which spontaneously evolves there.

The carbon nucleus has two stable isotopes, 12C and 13C. The overwhelmingly most abundance stable isotope of carbon is 12C, which possesses six protons and six neutrons; 13C possesses an extra neutron. (There is another, unstable isotope, 14C, which possesses two extra neutrons; 14C results from a high-energy reaction of the nitrogen nucleus, 14N, with a high-energy cosmic ray particle. The isotope 14C is not involved in the claims about the isotope ratios of carbon.) The carbon isotope ratio, designated δ13C, is simply the ratio of the abundance of carbon isotopes 13C/12C, normalized to the standard of the marine carbonate named Pee Dee Belemnite. The values of the measured δ13C ratio is expressed as a percentage (compared to the standard).

During the 1950’s, increasingly numerous measurements of the carbon isotope ratios of hydrocarbon gases were taken, particularly of methane; and too often assertions were made that such ratios could unambiguously determine the origin of the hydrocarbons. The validity of such assertions were tested, independently by Colombo, Gazzarini, and Gonfiantini in Italy and by Galimov in Russia. Both sets of workers established that the carbon isotope ratios cannot be used reliably to determine the origin of the carbon compound tested.

Colombo, Gazzarini, and Gonfiantini demonstrated conclusively, by a simple experiment the results of which admitted no ambiguity, that the carbon isotope ratios of methane change continuously along its transport path, becoming progressively lighter with distance traveled. Colombo et al. took a sample of natural gas and passed it through a column of crushed rock, chosen to resemble as closely as possible the terrestrial environment.27 Their results were definitive: The greater the distance of rock through which the sample of methane passes, the lighter becomes its carbon isotope ratio.

The reason for the result observed by Colombo et al. is straightforward: there is a slight preference for the heavier isotope of carbon to react chemically with the rock through which the gas passes. Therefore, the greater the transit distance through the rock, the lighter becomes the carbon isotope ratio, as the heavier is preferentially removed by chemical reaction along the transport path. This result is not surprising; contrarily, such is entirely consistent with the fundamental requirements of quantum mechanics and kinetic theory.

Pertinent to the matter of any claim that a light carbon isotope ratio might be indicative of a biological origin, the results demonstrated by Colombo et al. establish that such a claim is insupportable. Methane which might have originated from carbon material from the remains of a carbonaceous meteorite in the mantle of the Earth, and possessing initially a heavy carbon isotope ratio, could easily have that ratio diminished, along the path of its transit into the crust of the Earth, to a value comparable to common biological material.

Galimov demonstrated that the carbon isotope ratio of methane can become progressively heavier while at rest in a reservoir in the crust of the Earth, through the action of methane-consuming microbes.28 The city of Moscow stores methane in water-wet reservoirs on the outskirts of that city, into which natural gas is injected throughout the year. During summers, the quantity of methane in the reservoirs increases because of less use (primarily by heating), and during winters the quantity is drawn down. By calibrating the reservoir volumes and the distance from the injection facilities, the residency time of the methane in the reservoir is determined. Galimov established that the longer the methane remains in the reservoir, the heavier becomes its carbon isotope ratio.

The reason for the result observed by Galimov is also straightforward: In the water of the reservoir, there live microbes of the common, methane-metabolizing type. There is a slight preference for the lighter isotope of carbon to enter the microbe cell and to be metabolized. The longer the methane remains in the reservoir, the more of it is consumed by the methane-metabolizing microbes, with the molecules possessing lighter isotope being consumed more. Therefore, the longer its residency time in the reservoir, the heavier becomes the carbon isotope ratio, as the lighter is preferentially removed by methane-metabolizing microbes. This result is entirely consistent with the fundamental requirements of kinetic theory.

Furthermore, the carbon isotope ratios in hydrocarbon systems are also strongly influenced by the temperature of reaction. For hydrocarbons produced by the Fischer-Tropsch process, the δ13C varies from -65% at 127 C to -20% at 177 C.29, 30 No material parameter, the measurement of which varies by almost 70% with a variation of temperature of only approximately 10%, can be used as a reliable determinant of any property of that material.

The δ13C carbon isotope ratio cannot be considered to determine reliably the origin of a sample of methane, - or any other compound."

7) The location of petroleum reservoirs down the hydraulic gradient from the source rocks in many cases (those which are not are in areas where there is clear evidence of post migration tectonism).

Comment: Abiotic petroleum would invade the lowest parts of a sedimentary basin,and therefore fits this criteria.

8) The almost complete absence of significant petroleum occurrences in igneous and metamorphic rocks.

Comment: As no one seems to be drilling for oil in igneous and metamorphic rocks, this is hardly a surprising conclusion, but as shown above, oil production from the crystalline basement under the Ukrainian Dnieper-Donetsk Basin is an economic fact, so this statement is wrong.

The evidence usually cited in favor of abiogenic petroleum can all be better explained by the biogenic hypothesis, e.g.:

9) Rare traces of cooked pyrobitumens in igneous rocks (better explained by reaction with organic rich country rocks, with which the pyrobitumens can usually be tied).

Comment: No reference to data supporting this is given but Mahfoud and Beck, in Oil and Gas Journal, October 28, 1991 state:

"Lower Pleistocene carbonatite with basanitic, ultrabasic, and alkaline basalt xenoliths, was locally disseminated with and cut by veinlets of a solid hydrocarbon in rifted and plateau basalt covered southern Syria. Research in progress by the authors indicates that these rocks originated from the upper mantle (asthenosphere-lithosphere). The purpose of this study was to determine the chemical compositions of the hydrocarbon and whether or not it was of abiogenic origin. Petrographic, chemical, inductively-coupled plasma (ICP) and emission spectrometric, neutron activation, and gas chromatographymass spectrometric analysis showed 17 chemical compounds in the solid hydrocarbon, eight of which are n-alkanes and nine aromatic. In addition, chlorine, bromine, carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, silicon, sulfur, mercury, antimony, and numerous metallic elements previously found in basanite and ultrabasic xenoliths, were detected.

The sources of chlorine, bromine, carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, silicon, sulfur, mercury, and antimony were the upper mantle, hot springs and/or hydrothermal systems surging from or crossing the thick rifted and fractured alkaline plateau basalt.

The lack of hydrous silicates in basanite, ultrabasic xenoliths and plateau basalt, and the oxidation and hydration of ferrous oxide only in xenolithic peripheral mafic minerals (olivine and pyroxenes), indicated a seepage of meteoric water along the rift and fractures. The depth reached by this seepage was probably hot enough to decompose water to elemental hydrogen and oxygen.

The oxidation of ferrous oxide to magnetite and hematite was done by the reaction of ferrous oxide and magnetite with carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, or oxygen (from water). The iron oxides acted as catalysts.

The hematite changed to goethite, Fe2O3, by hydration. The formation of the hydrocarbon occurred by the hydrogenation of carbon or by other reactions between catalysts, carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, and water.

Reactions probably occurred between 230-500 C. (7-16 km in depth).

Drilling to more than 1,100 m in the alkaline plateau basalt did not reveal the presence of sedimentary rocks or any mother rocks (petroleum bearing).

The absence of mother rocks along with the difficulty of explaining otherwise the sources of all mentioned compounds suggested an inorganic or abiogenic origin in the mantle and/or along rift and fractures in basalt for the concerned hydrocarbon.

This abiogenic origin explained with ease all reactions, sources of elements, and their relationship with the tectonic events in southern Syria.

10) Rare traces of cooked pyrobitumens in metamorphic rocks (better explained by metamorphism of residual hydrocarbons in the protolith).

Comment: This statement has no bearing on the origin of oil.

11) The very rare occurrence of small hydrocarbon accumulations in igneous or metamorphic rocks (in every case these are adjacent to organic rich sedimentary rocks to which the hydrocarbons can be tied via biomarkers).

Comment: So what?

12) The presence of undoubted mantle derived gases (such as He and some CO2) in some natural gas (there is no reason why gas accumulations must be all from one source; given that some petroleum fields are of mixed provenance, it is inevitable that some mantle gas contamination of biogenic hydrocarbons will occur under some circumstances).

Comment: So there are abiotic hydrocarbon sources after all so this is simply a cover all contingencies statement.

13) The presence of traces of hydrocarbons in deep wells in crystalline rock (these can be formed by a range of processes, including metamorphic synthesis by the Fischer-Tropsch reaction, or from residual organic matter as in 10).

Comment: Metamorphic synthesis by the Fischer-Tropsch reaction does not occur.

"The Fischer-Tropsch process is the best-known industrial technique for the synthesis of hydrocarbons, and has been used for more than seventy-five years. The Fischer-Tropsch process reacts carbon monoxide and hydrogen at synthesis conditions of approximately 150 bar and 700 K, in the presence of ThO2, MgO, Al2O3, MnO, clays, and the catalysts Ni, Co, and Fe. The reactions are as follow:

When a Ni-Co catalyst is used, the Fischer-Tropsch synthesis proceeds according to the reaction: nCO + 2nH2 --(Ni,Co)--> nH2O + CnH2n

When a Fe catalyst is used, the Fischer-Tropsch synthesis proceeds according to the reaction: 2nCO + nH2 ---Fe---> NCo2 + CnH2n

The yield of the Fischer-Tropsch process is approximately 200 g of hydrocarbons from 1 m3 of CO and H2 mixture. During World War II, the production of liquid fuels by the Fischer-Tropsch process was used extensively in Germany; approximately 600,000 t of synthetic gasoline were synthesized in 1943.

The reaction products of the Fischer-Tropsch process are only metastable in the thermodynamic conditions of their synthesis; at pressures of approximately only 150 bar and 700 K, the destruction of liquid hydrocarbons is inevitable. During the industrial Fischer-Tropsch process, the reaction products are promptly cooled and moved to conditions of lower pressure. The natural environment does not mimic the highly-controlled, and highly-regulated, industrial, Fischer-Tropsch process. The Fischer-Tropsch process cannot be considered for the generation of natural petroleum.

14) Traces of hydrocarbon gases in magma volatiles (in most cases magmas ascend through sedimentary succession, any organic matter present will be thermally cracked and some will be incorporated into the volatile phase; some Fischer-Tropsch synthesis can also occur).

Comment: See previous comment about the Fischer-Tropsch Process.

15) Traces of hydrocarbon gases at mid ocean ridges (such traces are not surprising given that the upper mantle has been contaminated with biogenic organic matter through several billion years of subduction, the answer to 14 may be applicable also).

Comment: The following editorial from NCGT Issue 45, december 2007 shows that subduction is a nonsense. It never occurred, and so the hydrocarbon gases are better explained by the abiotic theory.

( This is the only portion edited out for length but you can hyperlink Luis Hissink's original blog refutation here to read his entire comment in full.

16) Traces of hydrocarbons in hydrothermal fluids; these are also all compositionally consistent with derivation from either country rocks or Fischer-Tropsch synthesis

Comment: The Fischer-Tropsch synthesis cannot occur in the crust as detailed above, and it is more plausible that these hydrocarbons are also abiotic. Dismissed.

Clark concludes "The geological evidence is utterly against the abiogenic postulate" is shown here to be quite wrong, not from reasoned argument but from evidence of chemical, physical and thermodynamic principles. Clark has not produced evidence verifying the biogenic process of oil production chemically and thermodynamically by experiment from subjecting biomass to diagenetic conditions in the earth's crust to spontaenously produce kerogen.

Until this evidence is provided, biotic oil theory cannot be considered a scientific theory but a pseudoscientific one.

Clarks points have been refuted where relevant, and dismissed where not.


I hope this reprint will be educational to the readers of this website.

BrianR said...

Anaconda ... that is indeed an interesting list of points and comments. Do you (or OilIsMastery, Quantum Flux, etc.) agree with all of those points? Just curious.

Quantum_Flux said...

Oil must form greater than 100 kilometers (62.5 miles) down according to The Thermodynamic Stability of the H-C System. That is well beyond the proposed oil window of about 15,000 feet (2.8 miles), and into the upper mantle according to The Structure of the Earth and the Origin of Magmas
and hence Abiotic Oil Theory must be correct. Western Oil Geologists just need to develop and utilize the methods of deep crust drilling, and given the aboundance of oil as a mineral there ought to be no such peaks as has been repeatedly predicted.

That being said, I do agree with the points in Anaconda's comment. Good work Anaconda and Oil_Is_Mastery. Thanks for the info, much appreciated!

Anaconda said...


Thank you Quantum_Flux , I appreciate your comment.

Welcome back to the discussion BrianR, your challenges have "pressed" me to clarify my thinking, which has been invaluble for my own understanding of Abiotic Theory -- yes, I'm learning, too.

Knowledgeable scientific scepticism is an important part of the scientific method. Your voice eloquently represents that needed side of the discussion.

As to your question: Yes, I generally agree with Luis Hissink's responses, although, I thought it was important to be able to articulate the responses "in my own words" instead of citing long passages from Jack F. Kenney's work.

(Note: I was unaware of Hissink's work when I made my own responses, so my responses were independently formulated based on my own understanding of Abiotic Theory at the time.)

I also didn't want to rely too much on one source when there are other sources of evidence that back up and support responses to Clarke's check list.

The one comment I had questions about was Hissink's response to Clarke's statement (#15) which I linked so others could read, but, since I have a limited basis to dispute tectonic theory, can't generally agree with, although, it's an interesting idea.

What's important is that Clarke's statements can be answered by Abiotic Theory.

BrianR, I would also like to thank you because your "pressing" caused me to think through aspects of Abiotic Theory which led to my own small contributions to Abiotic Theory in the realm of applying principles of mineralogy, particularly mineral formation and dissolution via the heat/pressure gradient (all mineral formation and dissolution follow this rule), and identifying oil as an ultramafic mineral with its associations with other ultramafic minerals (dolomite and diamond).

Also, your questions caused me to focus on the "transport" dynamic of oil from the shallow mantle to the crust and identifying "shearing" which increases the opportunity for chemical bonding between hydrogen and carbon. Formation and transport are related concepts.

You are always welcome and encouraged to join the discussion.

Your contribution is significant, as you say, "to advance the science."

BrianR said...

Anaconda ... unfortunately I don't have tons of time to engage in detailed discussion. I probably won't be able to respond for a few days.

I am glad that you don't agree with Hissink's spectacularly lame refutation of subduction. THAT is true psuedoscience. If oceanic crust doesn't subduct, but is created at spreading centers ... guess what ... the Earth would have to be expanding. There are some crazy cranks out there who actually subscribe to this. If I were you, I would not only be skeptical of the anti-subduction crowd, but steer very clear of them. While I still don't necessarily agree with everything you think about the non-existence of biogenic oil (at this point), this is not even close to the same as the anti-subduction theorists. In my opinion, they are in their own sphere of ridiculousness ... to the point that you can't even have a discussion.

I do have a little problem w/ you calling oil an ultramafic mineral. First, I'm not sure oil, which comes in numerous variations of a chemical composition would fit under a definition of a mineral. But, I suppose one could argue it if they really want.
Secondly, and more importantly, the term ultramafic is for rocks that are mostly (or nearly all) mafic minerals. The term mafic comes from magneisum ("ma") and iron (Fe, or "fic"). Their occurrence is certainly associated with the P-T conditions in which they form (i.e., Bowen's reaction series), but their definition is based on composition.

Anaconda said...

BrianR, I appreciate your taking the time to respond.

I recognize your disagreement with Hissink's no subduction position. There's strong scientific evidence for subduction, that's why I can't agree with his response to Clarke's (15) statement.

There is a simpler explanation:

Here is Clarke's statement and my answer (as originally given):

15) Traces of hydrocarbons gases at mid ocean ridges (such traces are not surprising given that the upper mantle has been contanimated with biogenic orgainic biogenic organic matter through several billion years of subduction, the answer to 14 may be applicable also).

Answer: The mid-ocean ridges are where magma is welling up from the mantle -- this molten rock would burn out any organic matter long before it resurfaced at the mid-ocean ridge. Dr. Clarke's answer pre-supposes that organic matter would survive, perhaps millions of years in a molten mantle, that seems unlikely (how far would these organics have to travel from a subduction zone out to the middle of the ocean in the mantle, again unlikely). More likely, these gases are primordial constituents of the mantle or it's possible Fischer-Tropsch synthesis occurs, but that does not disprove ultra-high heat and pressure formation of hydrocarbons.

You expressed concern with my calling oil an ultramafic mineral. I take your point that the definition of the term "ultramafic" is based on composition. In that sense, I stand corrected.

What I was driving at by mistakenly calling oil an ultramafic mineral was that oil shares certain characteristics with ultramafics: Their formation is at ultra-high temperature and pressure, thus in the mantle, and that oil is found in association with certain ultramafics, namely, dolomite as an ultramafic.

I realize the geology community holds that dolomite is a sedimentary mineral, but the cited scientific abstract gives support to my contention dolomite forms in roughly the same P-T conditions as oil and is why oil and dolomite are found in association in 80% of the North American oil deposits.

This also explains the "dolomite problem." And it explains the Dolomite mountain chain in Italy (way too much dolomite to stack up as a result of sedimentation). Oil's formation in the mantle at depths suggested by J.F. Kenney, also explains the presence of diamondoids in oil, which Chevron scientists were only able to create in the laboratory by mimicing conditions consistent with the mantle and consistent with Kenney's laboratory experiments creating the alkane series (hydrocarbons).

As for oil fitting the definition of a mineral: Oil clearly meet the criteria:

A mineral is a naturally occurring substance formed through geological processes that has a characteristic chemical composition, a highly ordered atomic structure and specific physical properties.

Oil has a characteristic chemical composition, albeit it forms in a series of polymorphs (the alkane series) of specific elements hydrogen and carbon.

True, instances of crystallization of petroleum is rare, but as this abstract shows, is possible.

I suspect hydrocarbons can be crystallized at very low temperatures.

The element mercury is considered a mineral even though it's a liquid at room temperature, thus having no crysalline structure -- at least at room temperature.

Diamond is the hardest of all known minerals; and that is because of the nature of the chemical bonds of the element carbon, generated by the P/T conditions of the mantle.

Hydrocarbons (petroleum) has specific physical properties because of the nature of it's chemical bonds and the density of the molecules and constituent atoms themselves.

Almost all molecules can take a cystalline structure: Example, water.

I have proposed the physical properies of oil: Namely, being in a liquid state in a wide range of temperatures on a continuum of pressure, and it's low density in relation to almost all other minerals gives it unique properties that helps propels oil toward the surface even though it is a mantle forming mineral, which with most deep forming minerals, causes them to be rare at the surface.

I hope this explains why I call oil a mineral and why I associated oil with ultramafic minerals.

I should have said oil is a deep forming mineral with unique properties of being a liquid with low density when other minerals are a solid with higher density, which causes oil to rise to the crust where other minerals tend to stay closer to their depth of formation.

Anaconda said...

Follow up on response to BrianR:

My explanation of why oil is a mineral failed to specifically compare and contrast petroleum to the part of mineral's definition which stated: "[A mineral has] highly ordered atomic structure."

Petroleum (hydrocarbons) have a "highly ordered atomic structure" consisting of a series of increasing length and complexity hydrocarbon polymorphs.

BrianR, you stated on a previous thread: "... if I accept the thermodynamical and chemical foundation of abiotic theory as Kenney lays out, I need to then see the concepts within the context of plate tectonics and what we think we know about the composition and evolution of the upper mantle and lower crust."

And: "I'd like to see some diagrams like that for abiotic concepts."

BrainR, I believe there is a "working model" that potentially demonstrates abiotic concepts of crust and mantle interaction, see New Scientist. This article has an accompanying video of a working model depicting a hypothesis of the mantle/crust interaction.

Please see (OIM) Rethinking Mantle Plumes, 7/25/08, for further explanation or join the discussion over on that thread.

Anaconda said...

Follow up postscript:

This is the operative sentence from the article: "This caused the core to either stall or sink, while the less dense material separated and continued rising."

This observation of the scaled fluid dynamics model is consistent with my assertion that oil's low density, liquid state gives it unique physical properties that allow oil to transport from the mantle to the crust and travel in the crust up to reservoir structures.

Anaconda said...

mineral definition

My apology.

Leslie Lim said...

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