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Book Chapter

Historical study of geosciences and engineering in the oilfields of the Emilia-Romagna region in the socio-economic context of post-Unitarian Italy (1861–1914)

By
Francesco Gerali
Francesco Gerali
1
The University of Oklahoma School of Law, Oil & Gas, Natural Resources, and Energy Center, 300 Timberdell Road, Norman, OK 73019-5081, USA
2
The University of Western Australia, FABLE, 35 Stirling Highway, Crawley, Perth, WA 6009, Australia
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Paolo Macini
Paolo Macini
3
School of Engineering and Architecture, University of Bologna, Viale del Risorgimento 2, 40136 Bologna, Italy
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Ezio Mesini
Ezio Mesini
3
School of Engineering and Architecture, University of Bologna, Viale del Risorgimento 2, 40136 Bologna, Italy
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Published:
January 01, 2018

Abstract

The purpose of this paper is to frame selected episodes in the establishment and development of the modern oil and gas industry in the Northern Apennines (Emilia-Romagna region), Italy. The research spans between the political unification of the Italian peninsula into the Kingdom of Italy (1861), and the outbreak of World War I (1914). In the attempt to delve into the socio-economic scenario of those times, we look to contextualize and describe the work of the geologists and engineers who contributed to developing the early scientific knowledge of practical utility on the oil-bearing formations of the Northern Apennines.

The history of the Emilia-Romagna oil industry was influenced and shaped by several episodes, and this paper discusses in particular two events that occurred during 1911. The first is an important and political act: the promulgation from the Italian authorities of the first regulation aimed at fostering the national oil industry, including the generous and criticized subsidies to support oil well drilling. The second is a technical–scientific landmark: the publication by Enrico Camerana and Bartolomeo Galdi (both engineers in the Royal Corps of Mines in Bologna) of the treatise I giacimenti petroleiferi dell’Emilia [The Oilfields of the Emilia Region], thanks to which Italian oil expertise made an important step forward. This seminal study on the state of the art of geological exploration of the oilfields of northern Italy represents the point of fracture between the empirical knowledge concerning oil and gas exploration and production and the development of the first national original research in the field of geosciences, to be fully developed in the decades to come.

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Contents

Geological Society, London, Special Publications

History of the European Oil and Gas Industry

J. Craig
J. Craig
Eni Upstream & Technical Services, Italy
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F. Gerali
F. Gerali
University of Oklahoma, USA
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F. MacAulay
F. MacAulay
Echo Energy plc, UK
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R. Sorkhabi
R. Sorkhabi
University of Utah, USA
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Geological Society of London
Volume
465
ISBN electronic:
9781786203656
Publication date:
January 01, 2018

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