Report: Peak oil theory is faulty
About 18 months ago, I wrote an article responding to a book by James Howard Kunstler claiming that world oil supplies and reserves have peaked, and that the world has a measurable probability of simply running out of energy.
I noted that Kunstler was just one more in a line of ridiculous and probably self-serving alarmists, the most famous of which are Thomas Malthus and Paul Ehrlich, both of whom essentially argued that humans would be extinct or well on their way by now.
[Kunstler, or someone claiming to be him, sent me an email calling me names which should not and will not be printed in a family-friendly environment such as rossputin.com]
Cambridge Energy Research Associates has now released a study arguing that the Peak Oil claims are based on bad data, bad assumptions, and faulty logic.
You can read their press release here:
And a Bloomberg News article about the study here:
CERA claims that "the remaining global oil resource base is actually 3.74 trillion barrels -- three times as large as the 1.2 trillion barrels estimated by the (peak oil) theory’s proponents -- and that the “peak oil” argument is based on faulty analysis which could, if accepted, distort critical policy and investment decisions and cloud the debate over the energy future."
They make a few other interesting points:
* “This is the fifth time that the world is said to be running out of oil,” says CERA Chairman Daniel Yergin. “Each time -- whether it was the ‘gasoline famine’ at the end of WWI or the ‘permanent shortage’ of the 1970s -- technology and the opening of new frontier areas has banished the specter of decline. There’s no reason to think that technology is finished this time.”
* Oil production does not tend to demonstrate a precipitious drop-off as reserves drain from a particular site. In other words, the decline in production at a site is not a mirror image of the rapid increase in production when a site first comes on line.
* Oil production will likely keep rising, another 50% from current levels, for at least 25 more years before we reach any sort of peak, and any decline from a peak will be slow and gradual.
I'll get into it more in upcoming articles, but it is time for Americans to wake up to the fact that the various scare tactics used by radical environmentalists such as peak oil, global warming, loss of fish stocks, etc., are simply part of their business model. Make no mistake, it is a business...and a big one. Much of the environmental movement is an offshoot of big unions, and they work hand in hand to regulate corporations, free markets, and capitalism. The same is true of anti-globalization activists. These groups are part of a movement that I truly consider evil. Their motives are NOT to save the environment or the owls or to improve working conditions of third-world workers. Their goals are to massively regulate the American economy for the benefit of their particular union and "environmental" interests. They are perfectly happy to cripple the economy in trying to get their way.
Make no mistake, radical environmentalists, anti-globalization activists, "peak oil" theorists, etc., are all part of the same movement. They are the enemy of the American economy, and are as dangerous to domestic prosperity as any threat we face. It is time for those who write and speak about public policy issues to give these people the names and explanations they deserve, and stop them from winning the war of words. Far too many people believe Global Warming is a problem, far too many believe it's an issue over which we have any control, and far too many believe it is possible to attempt to influence climate at a cost which would not bankrupt us. Similarly, far too many people believe oil and oil companies are inherently evil, that we're running out of oil, that our salvation lies in less efficient products like ethanol, and that the costs of forcing our economy rapidly to alternative energy sources are justifiable.
I think I'll stop now before I start foaming at the mouth....more on all these issues coming soon.
|Print article||This entry was posted by Rossputin on 11/15/06 at 04:24:54 am . Follow any responses to this post through RSS 2.0.|