Petro Rain

December 22, 2014

Rain again this early Monday on California’s north coast, feels like it’s raining all over the world. Nearly two months of this wet stuff for most of the time, and the accompanying, gray-gothic clouds, real-gloomy-like if continuous. Yet we need all the rain we can handle, and then some.
High-point yesterday, the first day of winter (per WunderBlog): ‘A record rainfall for December 21st of 2.84 inches was set at Crescent City CA yesterday. This breaks the old record of 1.95 inches which was set in 1957.’
We about 70 miles south, so our totals are pretty close.

OIL PUMPAnd in all current appearances, and to analogize the weather, there’s oil raining all over the world, too.
An oil glut has bubbled up the last six months, straining-down the filter to us at the gas pump, ending the year with the lowest prices in shit-long time.

Three weeks now since the last time I put gas in my old Jeep Comanche (posted here), when price was $3.27 a gallon for regular — and since I don’t travel far, or travel often, we’re still percolating along on the same, though, higher-priced gas.
Price this morning at the same station here in town is $2.87 a gallon for regular.

(Illustration: An oil pump ‘horse,’ found here).

I didn’t visit the gas station — didn’t need, new numbers from MotorTrend. Other numbers from around the country seem the same, with pump prices falling 25 cents the last two weeks, and nearly 80 cents lower than a year ago — national average now about $2.47 a gallon for regular. And all the digit crunching came from a new survey from Lundberg, released yesterday:

“This is mostly driven by crude oil prices, and absent a sudden spike we very well may see a drop of a few pennies more,” said Lundberg publisher Trilby Lundberg.
“That said, demand is up at these low prices.”

Chaos-dive for the industry — from MarketWatch this morning already:

On the New York Mercantile Exchange, light, sweet crude futures for delivery in February   CLG5, -1.37 percent  gained 31 cents, or 0.6 percent, to $57.45 a barrel. February Brent crude on London’s ICE Futures exchange   LCOG5, -0.8 percent  rose $1.86, or 3.1 percent, to $61.86 a barrel.
The price of Nymex crude fell 2.23 percent last week for the fourth consecutive week.
During those four weeks, Nymex lost 26.13 percent — the largest percentage decline for that time period since the week ended Dec. 26, 2008.
Brent crude fell 1.24percent last week and has also dropped for the last four consecutive weeks, losing 23.62 percent of its value.

And of course, culprits in collusion — OPEC claims it ain’t their fault prices are so low, yet they keep pouring the shit up and out of the ground. Bullshit.

From a couple of weeks ago, the US share also might be in trouble, via a glut:

According to the Energy Information Administration, U.S. oil inventories ended last week at 380.8 million barrels, an increase of 1.5 million barrels.
Industry watchers expected refiners and traders to have less oil on hand.
At the current level of stockpiles, American refineries could continue processing oil at the same pace for 23 days.
Meanwhile, U.S. oil production averaged 9.1 million barrels a day for the week ended Dec. 5.
That reflects a 31-year high.

Cars on the road, demand goes up, and the whole swing-set comes tumbling down.
Pollution, of course, An offshoot of oil use, and has been cringing around in the air forever, but really. really heavy-duty the past 150 years. Even natural hues found at Yellowstone national Park, have become not-natural — research by Montana State University and the Brandenburg University of Applied Sciences in Germany, and published in the journal Applied Optics, have revealed how warped the colors of the hot springs — pollution of  tourist trash, and bad air.
A detail from NOUS.Light:

‘In the case of Morning Glory Pool, they were even able to simulate what the pool once looked like between the 1880s and 1940s, when its temperatures were significantly higher.
During this time, its waters appeared a uniform deep blue.
An accumulation of coins, trash and rocks over the intervening decades has partially obscured the underwater vent, lowering the pool’s overall temperature and shifting its appearance to a terrace of orange-yellow-green.
This change from blue was demonstrated to result from the change in composition of the microbial mats, as a result of the lower water temperature.’

Slippery rain of oily debris.

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