Thursday, January 17, 2013

Cultural Oil

The part I found most interesting about this book talk on Russian oil was the description of cultural differences.

Apparently, when Russian oil companies (who are taxed at 95%) find an area with oil they get every last drop.  "Respect the oil," they say.  Whereas western companies get as much as they can but don't fret about the most difficult last few drops.

As a practical example, think about the last drops in a soda bottle or can.  You get most of the soda easily, but if you really want the very last few drops, then you need to exert much more effort.

Apparently the Russians are almost filled with rage at the thought that other oil companies skip some of the oil.

I think that that is an interesting look at cultural differences.  Cultural differences sure show up in unexpected place.


  1. About what time in the video does this discussion occur? It sounds rather suspect, as the production of those "very lost drops" is a matter of geology, technology and economics, not a question of attitude.

    1. Its a question of attitude about weather or not you try to get the most difficult stuff.