(242h) Characteristics of Unconventional and Heavy Oils: Their Economic and Environmental Impacts in Production and Processing
The world conventional oil resources is estimate around 1,300 billion barrels of oil in place while total world shale oil resources is estimated around 5 trillion barrels. In addition the amount of heavy oil and tar sands is estimated at 3 to 4 trillion barrels. Even with 20% recovery from these unconventional resources, proven unconventional oil resources exceed from those of conventional sources.
The nature and constituents of shale oil, oil sands and heavy oils are significantly different from those of light and conventional oils . Production, processing and consumption of these energy sources cause environmental issues such as carbon emission, atmospheric pollutants (acid rain, smog, ozone, etc.) as well as hazardous wastes and aqueous effluents. Processing cost of unconventional oil is also higher than conventional oils [2,3,4]. In this presentation at first the differences between conventional and unconventional oils especially from compositional and elemental points of views are discussed. Some important characteristics of unconventional oils such as metals, sulfur, nitrogen, asphaltene contents, estimation methods and their impacts on the selection of processing method and related costs will be discussed. Finally world refining investment patterns in relation with processing of heavy oil and residues will be analyzed and discussed.
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