Iranian Fuel Rationing

#1
From the BBC website

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/6243644.stm

Chaos as Iran starts fuel rations

Iran's petrol is heavily subsidised, sold at about a fifth of its real cost
At least one petrol station has been set on fire in the Iranian capital, Tehran, after the government announced fuel rationing for private motorists.

Iranians were given only two hours' notice of the move that limits private drivers to 100 litres of fuel a month.

Despite its huge energy reserves Iran lacks refining capacity, forcing it to import about 40% of its petrol.

Tehran is trying to rein in fuel consumption over fears of possible UN sanctions over its nuclear programme.

Iran fears the West could sanction its petrol imports and cripple its economy.

'Dangerous move'

The restrictions began at midnight local time on Wednesday (2030 GMT Tuesday).

The BBC's Frances Harrison in Tehran says there is anger and frustration the government did not give people more notice.

Eyewitnesses have seen at least one petrol station in the outskirts of the west of Tehran on fire and there are reports that three people died in the blaze.

All over the city there are huge queues and reports of scuffles at petrol stations as motorists try to beat the start of the rationing and fill their tanks.

Iran's petrol is heavily subsidised, sold at about a fifth of its real cost. So far there has been no announcement about whether Iranians can buy more petrol at the real market cost.

Our correspondent says rationing fuel is only likely to add to high inflation and the rising cost of living.

It is a dangerous move for any elected government, especially in an oil-rich country like Iran where people think cheap fuel is their birthright and public transport is very limited, she says.

The US, which is leading efforts to pressure Iran to suspend its uranium enrichment activities, has said Iran's fuel imports are a point of "leverage".

Washington and other Western nations accuse the Islamic Republic of seeking to build nuclear weapons.

Iran says its nuclear programme is entirely peaceful and is solely aimed at producing civilian nuclear power.
Are the Iranians fearing sanctions? Or should I put my Tomahawk6 Hat on and say that the Iranians are building up fuel stocks for war???
 
#2
ahhhh the irony, sitting on all that Oil and is unable to use it.

they did have refining ability but that went in 1979 along with the multinationals.
 
#4
Been known to be coming for quite some time... 2 years back Iranian government announced the need to reduce its import of POL to save cash. This appeared on the BBC 12 months ago:

Iran calls halt to petrol imports

Iran is to stop importing petrol from September and instead start rationing the fuel, its oil minister has said.

The move comes as Tehran seeks to reduce the billions of dollars it spends each year on petrol imports due to a shortage of domestic refineries.

While Iran is the world's fourth largest oil producer, it currently can only produce 57% of the country's daily petrol consumption.

The news comes as Iran continues its nuclear stand-off with the West.

Cont/...
Not only that, but their ability to suck the crude out of the ground is rapidly diminishing. The problem is, they simply haven't invested anything in the industry for almost 30 years and it's falling apart.
 
#6
...and yet they're investing in nuclear power? What's more expensive, a centrifuge complex for plutonium refinement, or maintenance of an oil refinery?

What's more likely to produce results inside six months?

Pull the other one, it's got bells on!
 

RP578

LE
Book Reviewer
#7
Iran seems to be imploding. Political factionalism, diversionary international adventurism & sabre rattling (RN hostage taking, nuclear development threats etc.), not to mention increasing civil unrest. Has the current regime run its course and if so, will they try a 'Galtieri' to rally support at home?
 
#9
Conicus_Maximus said:
...and yet they're investing in nuclear power? What's more expensive, a centrifuge complex for plutonium refinement, or maintenance of an oil refinery?

What's more likely to produce results inside six months?

Pull the other one, it's got bells on!
and

Conicus_Maximus said:
That's probably what the nuclear thing is all about.
Yes, you've already told us that, being a power distribution engineer, you're an expert in the field of the oil industry, geo-politics, strategic brinkmanship, and nuclear theory.

Nevertheless, I suspect that even you could learn something about Iran's oil (and wider energy) problems by having a read of the study advertised here: Iran Energy Crisis Brochure

It comes at a cost, but if you're interested in learning some real facts, you'll find a way to get a copy. Alternatively, you could just continue repeating conservative Washington group-think.

Edited to fix link. Cut & paste this in full to browser: http://www.cges.co.uk/pub/Iran Energy Crisis Brochure.pdf
 
#10
and yet they're investing in nuclear power? What's more expensive, a centrifuge complex for plutonium refinement, or maintenance of an oil refinery?

What's more likely to produce results inside six months?

Pull the other one, it's got bells on!
I read that as "How is a nation with a fuel crisis seriously going to justify putting resources and effort into a Weapons programme"

Now this is interesting. I'm unable to find a reference to an onstream power providing Nuclear pile on the Iranian national grid. The Buseher reactor can only come online with a LOT of Russian help, and not until November 2007.

Don't take my word for it, here is what the US Government theirownselves had to say in 2003

Iranian Nuclear Facilities: Arak and Natanz


Question: Did the Iranian government admit to having a heavy water reactor? If so, when? Have we confirmed reports of a uranium enrichment facility at Natanz and a heavy water reactor at Arak?

Answer: Iran has acknowledged both the heavy water production plant at Arak and the uranium enrichment facility at Natanz,

but did so only after their existence was disclosed to the press in August 2002 by an Iranian opposition group.

Now where have I heard that sort of disclosure before?

Aside from a small IAEA-safeguarded “zero-power” research reactor located at the Esfahan Nuclear Technology Center, Iran has no known heavy water reactor and no need for an indigenous source of heavy water. Iran’s only nuclear power reactor expected to become operational within the next decade is the light-water reactor under construction with Russian help at Bushehr.

This raises serious questions about Iran’s intentions in constructing an industrial-scale heavy water production plant at Arak. Heavy-water moderated reactors are better suited for plutonium production than are light water reactors. We believe Iran’s true intent is to develop the capability to produce fissile material for nuclear weapons, using both the plutonium route (supported ultimately by a heavy-water research reactor) and the highly enriched uranium route (supported by a gas centrifuge enrichment plant).

Iran has also confirmed to the IAEA that it is constructing a gas centrifuge uranium enrichment facility near the town of Natanz. Although Iran initially delayed the visit, IAEA Director General ElBaradei visited the Natanz site in late February and found what appeared to be a “sophisticated” centrifuge uranium enrichment program. We are deeply concerned at Iran’s efforts to build that facility clandestinely, and believe there is no logical reason for Iran to pursue uranium enrichment other than to support a weapons capability, especially in light of Russia’s pledge to provide all the fuel for the lifetime of the Bushehr reactor. The IAEA is undertaking a rigorous examination of Iran’s nuclear activities, and we look forward to hearing from Dr. ElBaradei at the June Board of Governors meeting as to the results to date of that examination.
http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/ps/2003/20439.htm

Stripping away the rhetoric and the "We believe that" what exactly does Iran have?

Fast forward to September last year......

Russia and Iran have signed a deal in Moscow to launch Iran's nuclear reactor at Bushehr in September next year, officials in Moscow say.
They say the Russian-built reactor will be fully operational in November 2007.
Iran had feared Russia would delay the launch because of international tension over Iran's nuclear activities, correspondents say.

The UN Security Council has told Iran to halt uranium enrichment amid fears it is trying to build nuclear arms.

Russian atomic energy agency spokesman Sergey Novikov said the date was fixed in an additional agreement to the original contract to build the reactor.

It came after Iranian officials apparently urged their Russian counterparts to speed up work to finish the plant.

'Compromise possible'

Russian Security Council Chairman Igor Ivanov, quoted by Itar-Tass news agency, said Moscow would stand by its commitments.

After a meeting with visiting Iranian Vice-President Gholamreza Agazadeh, Mr Ivanov said the nuclear crisis could be solved by negotiation.

A compromise could be found which would recognise Tehran's right to develop nuclear energy for peaceful purposes, but which also addressed the concerns of the international community, he said.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/europe/5380874.stm


So how exactly are they managing to produce weapons grade plutonium when they haven't got a functioning Nuclear facility. Even when they do get one, it will be under the security and technical oversight of the Russians.

This is ironic. Has all this talk by the Iranians of a bright Nuclear future, merely been window dressing to hide from their own population that the Iranian Government is selling more oil than they sensibly should have been , and eating dramatically into the domestic supply in doing so?

Has all this bluster been simply to hide the energy gap?

Amhedspellingmistake is not an unintelligent man, and I think has been indulging in "Jam tomorrow" on the world stage, both to bolster Iran's esteem and to pull the wool over the populations' eyes.

Iran is currently in a massive building , modernisation and regeneration programme and they need foreign exchange and investors desperately , hence the overclocked oil sales.

The problem is, they can't fill the energy gap. I think the Iranian Government is fully aware that keeping a disgruntled civpop of bright young things reasonably happy, is a tad more important than the ability to turm Tel Aviv into a self-illuminating car park.
 

RP578

LE
Book Reviewer
#11
PartTimePongo said:
Has all this talk by the Iranians of a bright Nuclear future, merely been window dressing to hide from their own population that the Iranian Government is selling more oil than they sensibly should have been , and eating dramatically into the domestic supply in doing so?

Has all this bluster been simply to hide the energy gap?

Amhedspellingmistake is not an unintelligent man, and I think has been indulging in "Jam tomorrow" on the world stage, both to bolster Iran's esteem and to pull the wool over the populations' eyes.

Iran is currently in a massive building , modernisation and regeneration programme and they need foreign exchange and investors desperately , hence the overclocked oil sales.
That's what I was driving at. Questions are; how long before this unravels and how badly? Should we in the West sit back and watch them fall apart or do we extend them a line of credit as a means of reigning them in?
 
#12
We also seem to forget that Iran has had nuclear ambitions for a VERY long time. This is not something cooked up by Ahmadinejad or even by the mullahs before him.

Irans first nuclear reactor, a 5MW thermal reactor for research and training, started working in 1967. I'll leave you to work out who supplied it!
 

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