Wednesday, December 5, 2007

They think they have right on their side

Wonder what Iran is doing with its nuclear program? The Economist reported the Iranians might not know, either.
Practically speaking, it makes little sense. Iran has poured an estimated $10 billion into building a complete, home-grown nuclear industry, yet it has just one nuclear power plant, the Russian-built Bushehr reactor, due to come on stream next year. The same money could have built ten conventional plants of the same capacity, fired solely by the natural gas that Iran currently flares off into the sky, because it has not invested in the technology to recover it.

How much natural gas is flared off in oil production? I found this presentation on Global Warming Benefits of World Natural Gas Market [23 pp. pdf] which says (p. 20),
Roughly 5 percent of rest-of-world natural gas flared off versus
1 percent of US natural gas production in 1999 ...

Amount natural gas flared off in 1999 outside of US was roughly equal to California’s annual demand for natural gas

Saying "Bushehr" might be even funnier in Farsi than some will find it in English, but $10 billion funnier?

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