Friday, December 30, 2016



Plenty of distilleries are lining up to cash in on the Whisky Boom, mainly Single Malts. Some of these are:

Annandale The Annandale distillery was closed in 1924, but production resumed in 2014.

Arbikie Arbikie is a large estate near Dundee. In 2014 they decided to build their own distillery.

Ardnamurchan The bottler Adelphi called itself a distillery long before they actually built one.

Ballindalloch Ballindalloch is one of Scotland’s smallest distilleries.

Daftmill The Daftmill micro-distillery has chosen not to release any of its whisky just yet.

Dalmunach Pernod Ricard / Chivas built the Dalmunach distillery in 2015 - and it’s beautiful.

Dornoch Dornoch distillery is a crowd funded project near the Dornoch Castle hotel.

Eden Mill The Eden Mill whisky distillery was established in 2014 - but it’s also a brewery.

Falkirk Development by Falkirk Distillery Company happens where Rosebank used to be.

Glasgow The Glasgow Distillery Company hardly seems like a ‘proper’ distillery right now.

GlenWyvis GlenWyvis says they will be the world’s first community owned distillery - eventually.

Harris The new Harris distillery on the Isle of Harris is also located on the Isle of Lewis.

Kingsbarns The Kingsbarns distillery started producing whisky in January 2015.

Loch Ewe Loch Ewe is kind of a ‘model’ distillery / tourist attraction. Whisky was never bottled.

Roseisle The massive Roseisle distillery was founded in 2009, but there’s no malt whisky yet.

Strathearn The Strathearn micro-distillery was producing malt whisky by the end of 2013.

Torabhaig The construction of Torabhaig on the Isle of Skye started in 2014 - and is unfinished.

Wednesday, December 7, 2016



What is Petroleum?
Petroleum (or crude oil) is a complex, naturally occurring liquid mixture containing mostly hydrocarbons, which contains compounds of oxygen, nitrogen and sulfur as well. It is also termed fossil fuel, formed by natural anaerobic decomposition of buried dead organisms, the age of which is typically millions of years, at times exceeding 600 million years. There is a general conception that when it is found under solid ground, that ground will be part of a desert, as is mainly the case today, with most petroleum reserves found in the sands of Saudi Arabia and the Middle East countries.

What is not known is that only a small portion of this crude oil came about as a consequence of decomposing dead organisms buried under solid ground. Most of the crude oil actually migrated to underground locations from under the seas! 70 percent of the earth’s surface is covered by water and the living organisms therein far exceed those on and under solid ground. The undersea organisms comprise of ancient fossilized organic materials, such as zooplankton and algae. Vast quantities of these remains settled to sea or lake bottoms, mixing with sediments and being buried under anoxic
conditions. As the number of layers increased with time, their density increased, causing a build up of intense heat and pressure in the lower regions. These conditions changed the organic matter into a waxy material known as ‘kerogen’. Petroleum is formed by the breaking down of large molecules of fats, oils and waxes that contribute to the formation of kerogen. 

Because petroleum is a fluid, and also due to continuous geologic tectonic movements, it is able to migrate through the earth as it forms. This migration is slow, over millions of years. Hydrocarbons migrate because oil and gas are less dense than water, so they try to rise toward the Earth's surface to
get above groundwater. Natural gas, being less dense, floats above the oil. This buoyancy tends to drive both oil and gas upwards. Typically, a hydrocarbon system must have a good migration pathway, such as a set of permeable fractures, in order for large volumes of hydrocarbons to move6. Oil companies pray for the absence of migration pathways, so that the oil and gaseous bodies become static pools.

Geological surveys look for large pools; extraction from small pools is not cost-effective, given the extremely high rates for leasing deepwater oil rigs (between US$ 450,000- 800,000 per day) and other working costs. To remain static, the pool or reservoir must be trapped by a non-porous rock
formation. The reservoir needs to have a cover of impervious rock that will prevent the passage of hydrocarbon fluids to the surface. This impervious rock covering the reservoir is called a cap rock. 

A hot and wet climate is conducive for the growth of large amounts of organisms. If this growth takes place in a shallow sea, the drying out of the environment and evaporation of the sea water leaves behind large deposits of salt. Salt is impervious to hydrocarbon fluids and makes an excellent cap rock. If migration is prevented by a geological folding of subsurface rocks, very large reservoirs are formed.

These were precisely the conditions that prevailed for eons in the Middle East, resulting in the enormous deposits of oil found in that region of the world10. Again, these are precisely the conditions that prevail in most tropical and subtropical continental shelves. The atmospheric and subsea conditions
in the Gulf of Mexico are ideal for oil pools from which the ‘black gold’ can be extracted gainfully.