Estonian oil production 1944

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Reigo2
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Estonian oil production 1944

Post by Reigo2 » 05 Nov 2022 11:19

Crude oil production from Estonian oil shale in 1944 (tons):
January 10500
February 7050
March 8050
April 9800
May 10650
June 10940
July 10390
August 11030
(NARA T77/690)

In September 1944 Soviets captured the remnants of the industry (destroyed by Germans before retreating). It is little known that Soviet long range aviation actually made a short bombing campaign in April 1944 (one attack also in May) against the industry but without important results.

Most of the oil products went for Kriegsmarine and the German high command considered the Estonian production important. However I would like to compare it to the production of other sources of oil under Axis control in Europe in 1944. I wonder if one can find a good source concerning Axis oil production statistics?

Peter89
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Re: Estonian oil production 1944

Post by Peter89 » 05 Nov 2022 16:54

Reigo2 wrote:
05 Nov 2022 11:19
Crude oil production from Estonian oil shale in 1944 (tons):
January 10500
February 7050
March 8050
April 9800
May 10650
June 10940
July 10390
August 11030
(NARA T77/690)

In September 1944 Soviets captured the remnants of the industry (destroyed by Germans before retreating). It is little known that Soviet long range aviation actually made a short bombing campaign in April 1944 (one attack also in May) against the industry but without important results.

Most of the oil products went for Kriegsmarine and the German high command considered the Estonian production important. However I would like to compare it to the production of other sources of oil under Axis control in Europe in 1944. I wonder if one can find a good source concerning Axis oil production statistics?
The question on its own is a very complicated one, because 1944 saw a lot of shrinking of territories under German control.

Then comes the problem of "crude" production or oil production, because a significant percentage of the German/Axis POL production came from synthetic plants.

Then comes the WAllied CBO offensive on the POL industry, which makes it even more harder to estimate the proportionate role of the Estonian shale oil.

The Estonian / Baltic shale oil was estimated to be around 100kt per year, which should be put into context with the 1000kt of Hungarian production, approximately the same in Austria and Albania, and about 5000kt in Romania. But these numbers vary greatly from month to month because on one hand the Germans pushed the increase of production, but on the other, the Allies damaged the industry.

The KM was eager to have the Estonian shale oil because the KM (or what's left of it) could only operate in the Baltic waters, and the transport of the shale oil was futile given the state of the German railroad system.
"Everything remained theory and hypothesis. On paper, in his plans, in his head, he juggled with Geschwaders and Divisions, while in reality there were really only makeshift squadrons at his disposal."

Reigo2
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Joined: 16 Jun 2015 20:29
Location: Estonia

Re: Estonian oil production 1944

Post by Reigo2 » 05 Nov 2022 18:18

Thanks for the interesting comments. The transport factor had not come into my mind.

Peter89
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Location: Europe

Re: Estonian oil production 1944

Post by Peter89 » 06 Nov 2022 09:45

Reigo2 wrote:
05 Nov 2022 18:18
Thanks for the interesting comments. The transport factor had not come into my mind.
I forgot to add that "sources" might mean different things as well. Production is not the only source available. Germany had its own stocks of course, then in 1939-1942 it captured foreign stocks, then in 1943-1945 they seized their allies' stocks as well.

For example, according to the USSBS' numbers, Germany had 574 kt aviation gasoline, 506 kt motor gasoline and 236 kt Diesel oil as stocks in May 1944.
"Everything remained theory and hypothesis. On paper, in his plans, in his head, he juggled with Geschwaders and Divisions, while in reality there were really only makeshift squadrons at his disposal."

thaddeus_c
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Re: Estonian oil production 1944

Post by thaddeus_c » 23 Jul 2023 00:43

the Germans sought to mirror the Estonian oil shale production late in the war https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation ... l_project)

Peter89
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Re: Estonian oil production 1944

Post by Peter89 » 23 Jul 2023 14:29

thaddeus_c wrote:
23 Jul 2023 00:43
the Germans sought to mirror the Estonian oil shale production late in the war https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation ... l_project)
It sounds a bit like clutching at straws. The minimal training program of the Luftwaffe alone required some 50 kt fuel, thus a few thousand tonnes of fuel didn't change anything. Germany needed hundreds of thousands of fuel constantly.
"Everything remained theory and hypothesis. On paper, in his plans, in his head, he juggled with Geschwaders and Divisions, while in reality there were really only makeshift squadrons at his disposal."

thaddeus_c
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Re: Estonian oil production 1944

Post by thaddeus_c » 27 Jul 2023 06:39

Peter89 wrote:
23 Jul 2023 14:29
thaddeus_c wrote:
23 Jul 2023 00:43
the Germans sought to mirror the Estonian oil shale production late in the war https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation ... l_project)
It sounds a bit like clutching at straws. The minimal training program of the Luftwaffe alone required some 50 kt fuel, thus a few thousand tonnes of fuel didn't change anything. Germany needed hundreds of thousands of fuel constantly.
I only thought it was an interesting tidbit regarding oil shale production, from a historical standpoint.

of course in the latter stages of the war no manufacturing or energy projects are going to amount to much.

Peter89
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Re: Estonian oil production 1944

Post by Peter89 » 27 Jul 2023 10:29

thaddeus_c wrote:
27 Jul 2023 06:39
Peter89 wrote:
23 Jul 2023 14:29
thaddeus_c wrote:
23 Jul 2023 00:43
the Germans sought to mirror the Estonian oil shale production late in the war https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation ... l_project)
It sounds a bit like clutching at straws. The minimal training program of the Luftwaffe alone required some 50 kt fuel, thus a few thousand tonnes of fuel didn't change anything. Germany needed hundreds of thousands of fuel constantly.
I only thought it was an interesting tidbit regarding oil shale production, from a historical standpoint.

of course in the latter stages of the war no manufacturing or energy projects are going to amount to much.
Yes, don't get me wrong, it is intersting indeed. It reminds me, however, on the mini-refinery project, what tried to disperse refineries and put them under ground in Hungary with some 20-30 kt capacity. Instead of the destroyed 600 kt capacity. I think in the late war there were some guys whom were given the task to do SOMETHING, to come up with some ideas; but nobody actually believed that these could work.
"Everything remained theory and hypothesis. On paper, in his plans, in his head, he juggled with Geschwaders and Divisions, while in reality there were really only makeshift squadrons at his disposal."

thaddeus_c
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Posts: 813
Joined: 22 Jan 2014 03:16

Re: Estonian oil production 1944

Post by thaddeus_c » 28 Jul 2023 01:06

a quick glance at War For Oil by Eichholtz, gives 1939 production of 180,000 tonnes of crude oil and 66,000 tonnes of diesel (annual basis)

the "goal" was to restore the facilities and produce 500,000 tonnes per year (no breakdown of the output stated)

Hitler was demanding 1m tonnes per anum FWIW.

Peter89
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Location: Europe

Re: Estonian oil production 1944

Post by Peter89 » 01 Aug 2023 08:32

thaddeus_c wrote:
28 Jul 2023 01:06
a quick glance at War For Oil by Eichholtz, gives 1939 production of 180,000 tonnes of crude oil and 66,000 tonnes of diesel (annual basis)

the "goal" was to restore the facilities and produce 500,000 tonnes per year (no breakdown of the output stated)

Hitler was demanding 1m tonnes per anum FWIW.
In Estonia?
"Everything remained theory and hypothesis. On paper, in his plans, in his head, he juggled with Geschwaders and Divisions, while in reality there were really only makeshift squadrons at his disposal."

thaddeus_c
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Posts: 813
Joined: 22 Jan 2014 03:16

Re: Estonian oil production 1944

Post by thaddeus_c » 01 Aug 2023 11:56

Peter89 wrote:
01 Aug 2023 08:32
thaddeus_c wrote:
28 Jul 2023 01:06
a quick glance at War For Oil by Eichholtz, gives 1939 production of 180,000 tonnes of crude oil and 66,000 tonnes of diesel (annual basis)

the "goal" was to restore the facilities and produce 500,000 tonnes per year (no breakdown of the output stated)

Hitler was demanding 1m tonnes per anum FWIW.
In Estonia?
yes in Estonia, cited that to illustrate they had not matched pre-war levels of production (going by the figures posted earlier)

if you read articles on their production, they have actually produced over 1m tonnes per year of shale oil in the current era, whether that would have been possible in the 1940's IDK.

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