Friday, 14 June 2019

Just dig a canal across the UAE, problem solved.

According to the Americans, the Iranians are carrying out sporadic random attacks on oil tankers passing through the Straits of Hormuz. The Iranians are decrying this as a false flag operation etcetera.

As a proper arm chair internet warrior, with zero knowledge about civil engineering, local politics, shipping or the oil industry, my brilliant solution, that can't possibly not work and will definitely defuse the whole situation, is for the UAE to quickly dig a new canal so that oil tankers can bypass the Straits entirely.

They can do short route A (30 miles or so) across the top bit, or the UAE and Oman can co-operate and do longer route B (100 miles or so) from Dubai to Sohar.

I did put some thought into this - my first bright idea was build a pipeline along those routes, but it turns out it would take days to empty an oil tanker at the western end and days to fill another oil tanker at the eastern end, so I shelved that one.

The answer's obvious if you look at the map:

11 comments:

James Higham said...

According to the Americans, the Iranians are carrying out sporadic random attacks on oil tankers passing through the Straits of Hormuz. The Iranians are decrying this as a false flag operation etcetera.

As a proper arm chair internet warrior, with zero knowledge about civil engineering, local politics, shipping or the oil industry, my brilliant solution, that can't possibly not work and will definitely defuse the whole situation, is for the UAE to quickly dig a new canal so that oil tankers can bypass the Straits entirely.

Love it.

Woodsy42 said...

One suspects the Americans will take the more direct and (for them) more direct solution, which is to sink every Iraninan boat in the straits, and if that fails bomb the shit out of the Iranian leadership.

Andrew Carey said...

Route A would require a remarkable set of locks to lift you over that 500 metre pass in the middle.
The highest canal in Great Britain goes up to 200 metres.

Mark Wadsworth said...

JH, thanks.

W42, that's a terrible idea.

AC, details details. I suggest blast a valley through it, locks are a nuisance.

benj said...

Pipeline(s) existing to a terminal on the coast of Oman?

Mark Wadsworth said...

BJ, possibly the more sensible option. Would have to from Iraq via Kuwait all the way down Saudi east coast.

benj said...

Exiting not existing.

18 million barrels per day. Would need quite a few pipes. But doable.

Mark Wadsworth said...

BJ, agreed. That's plan C.

The Stigler said...

This isn't as crazy as you think. In the 17th century the French built canals linking the Med to the Atlantic known as the Canal du Deux Mers which were about avoiding storms and piracy. At their peak in the mid-19th century they carried 110 million tonnes-kilometres of cargo and nearly 100,000 passengers carried.

(I have a plan to do the trip by pleasure boat some time).

Striebs said...

Woodsy42 ,

America's inability to do anything militarily about Iran signals the end of American hegemony .

Whilst everyone else was ranting about Brexit , they were missing the real story which is the end of the American Empire playing out in front of our eyes

- Iran's Russian missile system renders surface warships and fighter and bomber aircraft obsolete .
threaten countries to buy it .

- The waters of the Gulf of Hormuz are too shallow for the U.S.'s huge submarines .

- None of the countries bordering Iran will accept a concentration of U.S. military strength on it's soil

- Iran's missile system even offers protection against U.S. missiles

- NATO's AEGIS defence system doesn't work . See the case of the Israeli frigate which supposedly had it and got struck by a missile . The West forced Israel to say it was switched off ....

Given the U.S. can no longer police the world militarily , they are engaging in financial warfare and other forms ; cyber and hybrid where everything is a potential weapon .
They've shot their bolt by threatening to deny access to swift payment system and forced the development of alternatives .

The U.S. is the second largest importer of oil ; 8 million barrels of heavy oil a day from Canada , Central/South America and the Gulf . They do export 1 million barrels of LIQUIDS , technically condensate from "light tight oil" wells .

These desperate death rows of an empire are more dangerous than the end of any empire before .

Mark Wadsworth said...

S, good summary.

Something else that occurs to me is, if the Yanks could jump back in time, would it not have been better to leave Saddam Hussein in place as a local proxy counter-weight to Iran? Then Iran and Iraq would have been busy fighting each other, instead of Iran turning its attentions back to its favourite enemy, the USA.