One eternal flame located just south of Buffalo, NY could
change every assumption about energy in America.
Tucked behind a small waterfall in a county park - at the
northern edge of the Marcellus Shale, a naturally occurring
eternal flame flickers in the town of Orchard Park, New York.
But there's something unique about this eternal flame in New
York that could have incredible implications…
According to a recent article in
, an entirely different geological process feeds the New York
eternal flame. It's a process that's not fully understood by
In most eternal flames, the fuel source is deep underground in
shale. If the shale is near a heat source at or above the boiling
point of water, larger carbon molecules in the rock break
When these molecules break down, the shale releases natural
gas, and seeps to the surface. Occasionally, these are lit by a
person, forest fire, or lightning.
Or that's how all of them are supposed to work.
But the New York flame is operating in a very different way.
According to Live Science:
"In this case, though, the rocks that feed the flame are
only warm - "like a cup of tea" - as well as geologically
younger than expected, and shallow, Schimmelmann said. Those
findings suggest the gas is being produced by a different
process, whereby some sort of catalyst is creating gas
from organic molecules in the shale, he said."
For investors, there is an important takeaway.
There is likely to be much more natural gas throughout the
world than previously thought. Not just a little bit more. But
much, much more.
We're talking orders of magnitude. We've already seen American
oil and natural gas estimates increase considerably in just the
past few years.
According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the
United States has increased its oil and natural gas resources by
35% and 38% respectively since 2011- entirely due to shale
This goes along with something I've been saying for years…the
United States is on the cusp of achieving energy
The investment implications are not immediately obvious. More
natural gas and oil won't necessarily help the bulk of the
explorers, developers, drillers, and producers in the sector.
That's because increased supply generally means lower prices -
and lower profit margins.
Which is why I've focused my research on what are known as
"mid-stream" companies. The simple fact is - the United States
has the best developed pipeline and energy storage infrastructure
of any country in the world.
Unlike our vast oil and gas reserves, this system is largely
built - in existence and relatively modernized - and throwing off
huge amounts of cash to investors.
Many of these mid-stream players increase their payouts every
year - and there's plenty more to come.