According to the article, Helium is sourced from natural gas fields but few other details - Oh, and there is a discovery of a potential helium supply field in Tanzania not much information .
The Helium harvested from natural gas wells is the result of radioactive decay in the Earth's crust. The alpha particles emitted in a number of steps in various decay chains, including Radon, are just helium nuclei. Helium seeping up through the cracks into chambers where natural gas is trapped is often found in gas wells for this reason.
The Clintons certainly paid a lot of attention to Tanzania.
The ONLY proven He fields are scattered below the TX Permian Basin hard rock layers with natural gas and oil.
But worse, Helium is the ONLY chemical that cannot be replaced: Once vented to the atmosphere as a gas, He rises to the top of the atmosphere naturally and irreversibly, (because, of course, it is lighter than air) and then diffuses to space.
Unlike Argon, Nitrogen, Hydrogen, Oxygen or even Krypton, the lost He cannot be recovered or replaced. It cannot be “manufactured” or chemically separated except in H-bombs and nuclear reactions.
It is gone.
Flaring off gas in ND doesn’t help.
Why don’t we have any H to He power plants operating yet?
They would provide a limitless supply of free He......
We shall just have to open up more Helium mines.
Helium is a product of radioactive decay of a number of different transuranic elements, an inert “noble” gas that is the second lightest of elements in the Universe (after monatomic hydrogen, which does not exist in natural form).
Helium is being formed all the time in the molten core of Earth, and is a major constituent of the mass of the sun and every star, as it is very much a part of the evolution of elements. In the hellish cauldron that is at the core of these many stars, it is a building block of the entire rest of the periodic table as the enormous pressures and heat press the protons at the nucleus of every atom close enough together they then fuse into a new larger, heavier nucleus.
Because of its very low molecular weight, once helium gets into the open atmosphere, it rises in the atmosphere until it escapes earth’s gravity altogether and is lost forever, scattering into otherwise empty space.
Years ago, when the national government at least gave the appearance of caring about such things, they had a Helium stockpile iirc.
Also stockpiles of burlap and mohair and crystal radio minerals, but at least they didn’t want America to get caught with our pants down. Anything deemed strategic, rare earth minerals, they kept some on hand. The Swiss, of all people, have maintained a strategic Coffee supply policy for many years, which their government is proposing to rescind. This is not a bad idea. Chocolate is another. I have determined conclusively on my own, that it is not possible to “hoard” Chocolate. It ain’t happenin’. It’s one of those impossibilities - “Leftover Bacon”, same thing.
Natural rubber was completely cut off at the beginning of World War II. The government rationed gasoline to individuals to something like 6 gallons a week, and no one could possess more than five (5) car tires by April of 1942
It’s a by-product of natural gas. In 1996 (Clinton), Congress passed a law to phase out helium production by 2021, and the main producer in Amarillo Texas is doing just that.
I just went to get balloons for our park concert and was not able to purchase them. “We won’t know if we have any helium. Call a few days before the concert.”
Texas gas NG fields.
Maybe that’s why Hillary’s aide who runs Blackivy invested there...