34 votes
Accepted

Do fossil fuels insulate the crust from the Earth's interior?

Quoting from John Russell's response to this article, "This is arrant nonsense!" Russell concludes with How did this paper get through the peer-review and editorial review processes? What ...
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  • 20.5k
16 votes

What is the most important source of natural gas? Coal, oil or other?

The most important source of natural gas is natural gas. This is why it is called natural. It is not "made" from oil or coal. Natural gas forms by decomposition of organic material. Whether the ...
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15 votes

Do fossil fuels insulate the crust from the Earth's interior?

What neither the authors nor the response by John Russell takes into account is that all underground oil and gas is stored inside tiny pores of rocks. An oil reservoir is not a big underground cave, ...
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15 votes

Has a reduction in car use ever had an effect on the ozone layer?

The sequence of events you describe has never happened, for several reasons. As Sabre Tooth mentions in the comments, vehicle emissions have a negligible effect on stratospheric ozone. (Note that ...
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  • 5,380
14 votes

To stop anthropogenic climate change, is it necessary to stop extracting petroleum and start pumping carbon under ground?

Summary Most of the remaining stocks of hydrocarbons (coal, natural gas, oil) will have to remain unburnt. In almost all cases, that will mean leaving them in the ground. We already have proven ...
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  • 4,090
13 votes

Why is helium only found in wells mixed with natural gas?

Helium is produced by the radioactive decay of primordial uranium and thorium. It should not be strongly associated with non-primordial 'fossil' hydrocarbons. The first statement is correct. The ...
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  • 20.5k
12 votes

Are fossil fuels really formed from fossils?

Let's look at this. A very large number of points for one question. First, the solar system. We do not see any hydrocarbons in the inner solar system (Mercury to Mars). This is because in this region ...
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10 votes

To stop anthropogenic climate change, is it necessary to stop extracting petroleum and start pumping carbon under ground?

No, we do not need to stop extracting petroleum, we need to stop burning petroleum, as well as other fossil fuels, because combustion converts solid C to gaseous C, and hence goes up to the atmosphere,...
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10 votes

Can I use diamonds as fossil fuel?

Diamonds are expensive. Really expensive. Even "cheap" synthetic diamonds are orders of magnitude more expensive than conventional fossil fuel. By using them as fuel, you will increase ...
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9 votes

Are there probably decent oil fields located in the middle of the ocean?

Are there probably decent oil fields located in the middle of the ocean? tl;dr: no. Hydrocarbon deposits form by thermal maturation (i.e. slow and mild heating) of buried organic matter (i.e. dead ...
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8 votes

Are there gases from the Earth useful to generate electricity besides "natural gas"?

The category "other gases" may not solely include other naturally occurring gases extracted from the Earth. As you state natural gas is predominantly methane, extracted from the Earth. Another type ...
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8 votes

Petroleum and coal formation

Coal, oil and gas can be found anywhere on Earth: on land and on sea. The Japanese once mined coal from beneath the sea floor, using Hashima Island as the base of operations. The island is only 6.3 ...
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8 votes
Accepted

How does one create petroleum/crude oil for future generations?

Geological processes are just too slow. Although, given how quickly we are pumping greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, humanity may well (in a generation or two) be growing biological material as ...
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  • 4,090
8 votes

Why is the creation of water from the combustion of hydrocarbons not listed as a cause for rising sea levels?

1.2 x 10^13 kg equals 12,000,000,000,000 l water. One liter equals 0.001 m³, while one km³ equals one billion (1 x 10^9) m³. So we're supposedly adding 12 km³ water to the atmosphere per year. ...
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  • 786
7 votes

How much fossil fuel came from the Carboniferous?

The process you're describing in the question is the one at the origin of coal. Although coal deposits are known from the Devonian to the Quaternary, they have been 3 major periods of depositions (see ...
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  • 5,278
7 votes

Why is helium only found in wells mixed with natural gas?

David Hammen's answer explains why He is extracted from natural gas. But, it is not found only there. Helium exists just about everywhere on earth. You find it in volcanoes, in subseafloor ...
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6 votes
Accepted

Are there gases from the Earth useful to generate electricity besides "natural gas"?

Fred's answer looks correct, but in this case, the source is right there under the chart. US Energy Information Administration (type "other gases" in the search box) Explained here in the footnotes ...
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  • 5,727
6 votes

How does one create petroleum/crude oil for future generations?

This isn't really a complete answer, more of a footnote to @EnergyNumbers answer. (Aside: I'm not sure what the definition of a 'geological process' is, but it's not quite fair to say they are 'too ...
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5 votes
Accepted

Does the amount of energy released from burning of fossil fuels have a measurable impact on global warming?

Yes, it does add to global warming. No, it's not currently measurable. Human primary non-renewable energy consumption is about 15TW - and pretty much all of that goes into low-grade heat in the ...
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  • 4,090
5 votes

What is the most important source of natural gas? Coal, oil or other?

A significant part of the natural gas used around the world today comes from oil fields. On top of the oil is a layer of natural gas, and in the crude oil is dissolved natural gas. This will be ...
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  • 1,830
4 votes

Coal self-heating and spontaneous combustion, how does this happen?

Reference [6] under that Wikipedia article on spontaneous combustion gives you some answers: "The Fire Below: Spontaneous Combustion In Coal". DOE/EH-0320, Issue No. 93-4. US Department of Energy. ...
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  • 2,626
4 votes

Coal self-heating and spontaneous combustion, how does this happen?

Sulphur/sulphides in coal may be one of the causes of self combustion. A slight diversion - in some metal sulphide mines, such as copper, at high level of sulphides in the ore, the sulphides can ...
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3 votes

Why does mineral oil occur below natural gas?

Natural gas can occur above and below oil formations however when they occur in the same formation natural gas will sit on top because it’s density per kg/m3 is 800+ and natural gases density is 400+ ...
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3 votes

Are fossil fuels really formed from fossils?

The definition of a fossil is "evidence of past life preserved by geologic processes". By this definition a coal bed is itself a fossil since it is the preserved organic matter from an ancient ...
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3 votes

Why is helium only found in wells mixed with natural gas?

The helium in natural gas wells is created from uranium and thorium (as you correctly state) contained in the underlying granite basement rock or radioactive black shales that allows the natural gas ...
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  • 2,137
3 votes

Coal self-heating and spontaneous combustion, how does this happen?

Coal and other organics like wood and straw decompose when exposed to oxygen, that decomposition is an exothermic oxidation reaction so it heats the material around it which accelerates the ...
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  • 4,225
3 votes

Do fossil fuels insulate the crust from the Earth's interior?

I honestly wish I could come up with a better answer for this question but the original article is so horrible I'm not sure where to even begin responding to it. For starters, it's published in a ...
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3 votes

Natural Gas fields as power sources

If one really wanted to, one could find a way to use the heat generated by Darvaza gas crater in Turkemenistan. Adapting the method used to construct the replacement sarcophagus at Chernobyl that was ...
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  • 21.8k
2 votes

Are there gases from the Earth useful to generate electricity besides "natural gas"?

To add on to Fred above - There is something called 'Underground coal gasification' where you basically react coal with steam and oxygen underground to produce a stream of carbon monoxide and ...
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2 votes

Are there gases from the Earth useful to generate electricity besides "natural gas"?

LPG ( liquid petroleum gas) is primarily produced with "natural" gas. It is separated from the methane by condensation ( in "gas plants" ) because it is more valuable . It does not require pipelines ...
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