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No. 79: Jan-Feb 1992

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Black gold -- again

The Siljan Ring and T. Gold are back in the news again. A few years ago, at Gold's instigation, private investors and the Swedish govenment put up money to drill for oil and gas at the Siljan Ring, some 200 kilometers northwest of Stockholm. This granitic region is a meteor-created, shattered scar on the earth's crust. It is in just such a spot that Gold expects to find abiogenic petroleum and methane seeping upward from deep inside the earth, where they have resided since the earth was formed. Con-ventional petroleum geologists have roundly ridiculed the Siljan Ring project; after all, everyone knows that oil and gas derive from buried organic matter.

Three years ago, at a depth of 6.7 kilometers, the "misguided" Swedish drillers pumped 12 tons of oily sludge from the granite rock. "Just drilling fluids and diesel-oil pumped down from the surface," laughed the experts. This autumn (1991), more oil was struck in a new hole only 2.8 kilometers deep. This time, only water was used to lubricate the drill. How are the skeptics going to explain this? Well, about 20 kilometers away, there are sedimentary rocks; perhaps the oil seeped into the granite from there. Rejecting this interpretation, the drillers are going deeper in hopes of finding primordial methane. (Aldhous, Peter; "Black Gold Causes a Stir," Nature, 353:593, 199l. Anonymous; "Black Gold," The Economist, p. 101, October 19, 1991. Cr. T. Brown)

Reference. T. Gold's iconoclastic ideas are the origin of oil and methane are reviewed in ESC13 and ESC16 in our catalog: Anomalies in Geology. To order, visit: here.

From Science Frontiers #79, JAN-FEB 1992. 1992-2000 William R. Corliss

Science Frontiers Sourcebook Project Reviewed in:


  • "A sourcebook of unexplained phenomena is therefore a valuable addition to a collection of scientific literature. William R. Corliss has provided this in the past with his source books of scientific anomalies in several subjects, and now he has provided it for astronomy. He has done an excellent job of collecting and editing a large amount of material, taken in part from scientific journals and in part from scientific reporting in the popular or semi-scientific press." -- "The Mysterious Universe: A Handbook of Astronomical Anomalies", reviwed by Thomas Gold, Cornell University, in Icarus, vol.41, 1980

  • "An interesting, systematic presentation of unusual weather [..] This book is recommended for a general audience" --"Corliss, William R., Tornados, Dark Days, Anomalous Precipitation, and Related Weather Phenomena, Sourcebook Project, 1983.", revieweed in Choice, September 1983
  • "..the science is necessarily somewhat speculative, but Corliss's symthesis is based on reputable sources." -- "Corliss, William R. (Compiler). Lightning, Auroras, Nocturnal Lights, and Related Luminous Phenomena" reviwed by Joseph M. Moran, Univ. of Wisconsin in Science Books and Films, Sep/Oct 1983

  • "Before opening the book, I set certain standards that a volume which treads into dangerous grounds grounds like this must meet. The author scrupulously met, or even exceeded those standards. Each phenomenon is exhaustively documented, with references to scientific journals [..] and extensive quotations" -- "Book Review: The moon and planets: a catalog of astronomical anomalies", The Sourcebook Project, 1985., Corliss, W. R., Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Vol. 81, no. 1 (1987), p. 24., 02/1987