Geothermal and fossil fuels

As we produce more and more,  we consume even more and more.  The NOCs have become more stronger thus diluting the powers of erstwhile seven sisters….BP, ESSO, Gulf Oil, Mobil, RDS,SC, Texaco who subsequently reorganised to form supermajors. With the govts funding large projects the NOCs have become less dependent on SMs. With advancement of technology, once held view” oil reserve will decline in future” has become a myth in some minds. With the know-how of “open secret” extraction technology the  NOCs have the opportunity to explore and exploit unexplored horizons below the earth. Countries like Saudi Arabia, Russia and other Gulf countries who controls the world oil market continue to do so. But there will be a limit and cost for every drop oil extracted in future. With increase in cars, demand for oil to drive them will increase from the present 60% demand.  The question is whether to be happy at our new technologies that is able to provide more and more oil or conserve the reserves by using energy source mix through other energy sources like geothermal? With increase in the use of fossil fuels, the future generation is at risk and have to face adverse climatic conditions. Are we really justified to do this? There is alternate solution to tide over this crisis for the future generation. Franking and cracking and enhanced oil recovery technologies through polymers may meet immediate demand and establishes human’s “super-power’. But, at the end of the day, these are detrimental to the subsurface environment and. If advance country are doing, that is because they have land at their disposal. But countries of non-OECD group need caution in exercising these option when there is good viable option available in hand. When Earth is providing sufficient oil and gas for the mankind to live, the same earth is also providing heat to use it. Even if every country can use 5 percent of its energy needs from geothermal, the countries and prosper and achieve the current GDP and breath clean air. It is a question of mind set and priorities. Our priority should not be to be over smart by implementing super technologies to maintain the GDP but to be smart in maintaining sustainable development with the same technologies we have. There are activities that can use energy sources other than oil and gas. Countries have to strengthen these technologies.  Drilling technology has supported EGS to a large extent and today countries are looking at deeply buried, high heat generating granites below the sedimentary cover for energy. Technology is emerging to extract heat from such granites through circulating CO2. This is a win-win situation……reduce CO2 to control the climate and to use the same gas to extract heat from the granites to generate power. We  have no better option than this. R and D in hydro fracturing is at its peak now with countries taking the challenges and generating electricity from granites. To count a few, Indian granites have the potential to generate energy equivalent to 3.133 x 1022 BTU. Even if 2 percent of this energy is extracted, it will do wonders. This will control CO2 emission on one side and allow countries to utilize their oil reserves for a longer period than that envisaged by a few pundits. This especially true with respect to the oil giants like Saudi Arabia and other gulf countries. These countries do have reasonable reserves of geothermal resources awaiting utilization. The land requirement for geothermal power plants are small compared to other renewable like solar pv and wind. Geothermal power plants need 1 acre/MWe, while solar pv and wind need  7 and 3 acre/MWe respectively.