Friday, October 31, 2008

Technosanity #16: Peak Oil Global Overview, An American Wake Up Call

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A presentation at ASPO-USA 2008 by Mr. Jeremy J Gilbert, Managing Director, Barrelmore Ltd Jeremy Gilbert. Jeremy is the recently retired Chief Petroleum Engineer from British Petroleum (BP) where he was responsible for the company's worldwide petroleum engineering performance and associated research and development program. He joined BP in 1964.

His topic is a general overview of Peak Oil, specifically focusing on why it is time for America to wake up to Peak Oil. There have been a series of wake up calls, but has much changed?

While America has slept on: 2001: Discovery rates continue decades-long fall; Calculations suggest reserves can’t meet demand projections; Some recognition of political, investment risk in developing resources. 2008: No improvement in resource situation; New, more accurate, calculations of supply define earlier and clearer peak; Political will to increase supply clearly absent; prices not stimulating investment to increase supply

There are three problems: Geology, Investment, Policy of main producers. These, taken together, make the future of oil very difficult

Why are there still political leaders like Newt Gingrich or Henry Kissinger continuing to say there is no problem.

It's not a problem which higher oil prices will fully solve. According to these leaders or to most economists it is a simple problem of supply and demand. Higher demand will cause a higher price and it will do two things, incentivize customers to cut back, and incentivize energy producing countries to look for more oil or to use alternative methods. But this ignores a deeply serious problem, that in oil field after oil field it has been observed that oil production reaches a peak at the midway point, and then inevitably goes into a production decline. No amount of money will change the issue that the planet cannot provide more oil.

Technosanity #16: Peak Oil Global Overview, An American Wake Up Call

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