Brazil: The Energy Crisis Deepens!

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Last week, after Petrobras announced changes in its deliveries of natural gas to industry and electrical utilities, the headlines here were all about the deepening fuel crisis! The looming economic turmoil! Intimations of vast carelessness and inexplicable incompetence! Plunging back into the dark ages!

The “related stories” section to the announcement in the Estadão today is full of “understand the crisis” and “chronology of crisis”-type stories.

Now hear this.

 A Petrobras anunciou a descoberta de uma reserva de cinco bilhões a oito bilhões de barris de petróleo de boa qualidade e gás abaixo da camada de sal. A conclusão é resultado dos testes que foram feitos em um poço na área Tupi, localizada na bacia de Santos. Atualmente, o total de reservas da Petrobras soma em torno de 13 bilhões de barris. Ou seja, a nova descoberta pode representar um aumento de 50% nas reservas atuais.

Petrobras announced the discovery of a reserve of between 5 and 8 billion barrels of high-quality petroleum and gas below the salt layer. The conclusion is the result of tests made in the Tupi region, located in the Santos Basin. Currently, total reserves held by Petrobras amount to 13 billion barrels. That is, the new discovery could increase those reserves by 50%.

Gas is measured in cubic something or other, is it not? Or BTUs?

We are actually high on a hillside along that very coast right now (somewhere along the arc between Ilhabela and Paraty), gazing out to sea in the direction of that deep-sea bonanza, just like the idle crowds in the opening scene of Moby Dick.

Except that we are in the middle of the jungle, of course. Among the frogs and dogs and fog and urubus and angry iguanas and ten thousand species of twittering creatures more. A little head-clearing vacation. Just listen to that uirapurú sing.

A Petrobras é operadora da área com 65% do capital, em parceria com a britânica BG Group, que detém 25%, e a portuguesa Petrogal/Galp, com 10%. O óleo encontrado no local tem 28 graus API, considerado de melhor qualidade comercial do que a média do petróleo encontrado no Brasil. Quanto mais próximo de 50 graus API mais leve é o óleo e portanto mais fácil de refinar.

[tktktkt]

Dilma — formerly the energy minister herself — boasts that this rockets Brasil out of the recently energy-independent category into the net exporter club.

A ministra chefe da Casa Civil afirmou nesta quinta-feira, 8, que a descoberta das reservas de petróleo de gás no campo de Tupi “transforma o País em exportador de petróleo”. De acordo com ela, o Brasil era um produtor médio, com a auto-suficiência recente e agora passa para “o primeiro patamar” de produtores. A ministra comparou o futuro do Brasil nessa área com grandes produtores citando os países árabes e a Venezuela.

I think Ecuador just rejoined OPEC, right?  Venezuela gets the go-ahead to join the Mercosul, Brazil gets invited to join OPEC?

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