Satellite Images Reveal How the U.S. Oil Boom Is Creating New Cities

This image from NASA reveals a massive cluster of lights in what was — until recently — desolate prairie. This is the Bakken Shale, an oil-rich rock formation stretching across parts of North Dakota, Montana and Canada. The lights are from the illuminated derricks, local boomtowns and gas flares of the oil fields. » 10/21/14 11:40am 10/21/14 11:40am

As the U.S. continues to sit on the Keystone oil pipeline, Canada is now looking toward Asia. Known as the Northern Gateway project, Canada's government has approved 731 miles of pipeline, expected to transport 525,000 barrels a day to Asia-bound tankers. » 6/18/14 8:00pm 6/18/14 8:00pm

Pioneer Exclusive Poster Debut Reveals The Dark Danger of the Sea

Based on a true story, Pioneer follows about a team of Norwegian divers who were subjected to risky experiments at the birth of the Norwegian oil-drilling industry in the early 1980s. We have an exclusive look at the new poster from Magnolia Pictures. » 4/10/14 9:45am 4/10/14 9:45am

That time we nearly nuked Canada (with their permission)

The fifties and sixties were a crazy time when it came to nuclear bombs. Half the population was trying to build shelters to get away from them, and half saw them as the wave of the future. Some of that second half came up with a great idea - nuke Canada for oil. » 1/03/14 10:40am 1/03/14 10:40am

Mexico may amend its constitution so that it can drill for more oil

Mexico sits atop some positively massive quantities of shale oil and gas, but, unlike America, has not pursued these lucrative subterranean reserves. Why? According to Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto, doing so is against the country's constitution; so he's asking the government to change it. » 11/12/13 2:20pm 11/12/13 2:20pm

Canadian scientists protest government muzzling of researchers

Hundreds of protesters, many of them wearing white lab coats, gathered yesterday across 17 Canadian cities to express their annoyance at the federal government's anti-science policies. Advocates say the campaign to counter these measures has moved into a new phase. » 9/17/13 9:40am 9/17/13 9:40am

Halliburton admits it destroyed evidence after Gulf oil spill

Halliburton has plead guilty to destroying evidence in the investigation surrounding 2010's Gulf of Mexico Oil spill, the largest accidental oil spill in history. This case represents a major milestone in how the world understands environmental damage, and culpability for it. » 7/26/13 10:24am 7/26/13 10:24am

How the Tar Sands Are Crushing Science in Canada

The Canadian government is currently under investigation for its efforts to obstruct the right of the media and public to speak to government scientists. These policies are widely believed to be a part of the government's unspoken campaign to ensure that oil keeps flowing from the Athabasca tar sands — even if it’s at… » 4/03/13 9:00am 4/03/13 9:00am

The U.S. will become energy independent by 2035 — but at what cost?

The International Energy Agency has released a report in which it's predicting that the U.S. will become the world's largest producer of oil by 2020 — surpassing even Saudi Arabia. The IEA report also predicts that the U.S. will be a net exporter of oil by 2030 and nearly self-sufficient in energy by 2035. This… » 11/13/12 2:40pm 11/13/12 2:40pm

Water that floats on oil could speed spill cleanups

Most everyone knows that oil and water don't mix. Oil molecules are non-polar, meaning their charge is distributed more or less evenly throughout their structure. Water, on the other hand, is polar — different parts of each water molecule carry a weak positive or negative charge. » 4/06/12 11:22am 4/06/12 11:22am

Oil Springs of Catan explores the tragedy of the commons

Settlers of Catan has plenty of expansions that change the dynamics of the game, forcing the players to work together, putting a focus on exploration, or drawing emphasis to a certain section of the map. A new variation from publisher Mayfair Games will add a new wrinkle to the basic game, allowing some players to get… » 10/23/11 8:30am 10/23/11 8:30am

The sea caverns of Singapore

Singapore has embarked upon the excavation of an underground oil reserve, expanding the city's industrial port beneath the floor of the Pacific Ocean. It is "no ordinary construction site," the BBC tells us, but an elaborate project of engineering and infrastructure currently underway "several hundred feet… » 10/01/11 1:50pm 10/01/11 1:50pm

Georgian army rented for Russia-hating war flick

The August 2008 war between Georgia and Russia was fought at sea, in the air, on land … and in the press, as both sides tried to spin events in their favor. The shooting has ended. The propaganda war continues. » 9/04/11 8:30am 9/04/11 8:30am

The days of "Easy Oil" are over

The major oil fields in the Gulf region have pumped more than half their oil, which is the point at which production usually begins to decline, one expert tells the Wall Street Journal. » 5/24/11 6:20am 5/24/11 6:20am

An amazing infographic explains what we'd have done with the 205…

Last year's Gulf Oil Spill released 205 million gallons of oil — such a huge amount, it's hard to get your mind around. To help conceptualize it, Chris Harmon created this amazing animated infographic. » 4/27/11 4:09pm 4/27/11 4:09pm

Hydrocarbons could form deep in the Earth from methane, not animal…

A new study demonstrates how high hydrocarbons could be formed from methane deep within the Earth, aside from the compression and heating of ancient animal remains over the eons. » 4/16/11 8:00am 4/16/11 8:00am

When oil runs out, chicken feathers will be the new plastic

We usually think of fossil fuels as an energy source, but petroleum is also the raw materials used in all the world's plastics. Now leftover chicken feathers could allow us to keep using plastics in a world after oil. » 4/03/11 9:30am 4/03/11 9:30am

Oil drilling is getting even more extreme and dangerous

You'd think that blowback from the Deepwater oil disaster would make companies more cautious about drilling deep into the Earth in search of black gold. But a terrific article by Discover's Mac Margolis reveals drilling is only getting more extreme. » 1/21/11 1:33pm 1/21/11 1:33pm

What do we mean by "how much oil is left" in the Gulf?

Flip on the news and you'll see pundits a-go-go discussing the amount of oil left in the Gulf of Mexico. But how does one actually determine this amount? Diandra Leslie-Pelecky explores the fluidity of the figures and potential clean-up solutions. » 8/28/10 12:55pm 8/28/10 12:55pm

This one-year projection of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill will ruin…

Researchers at the University of Hawaii at Mānoa have created a simulation of the potential spread of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill over 360 days. Their hypothetical scenario? All sorts of bad. » 7/07/10 4:00pm 7/07/10 4:00pm