Monday, May 26, 2008

Peak Oil… Oil Depletion & Deception

I was reading this article today in The Panama News online at http://www.thepanamanews.com/pn/v_14/issue_10/opinion_07.html about “peak oil” and politicians with their heads in the sand. I have been trying to follow up my concerns about our oil crisis with some objective research when and where I can find the time. This article for me summed up the biggest scare in this whole scenario. While most Americans…and non-Americans…are complaining most about the PRICE of gas, and electricity, and heating oil, and airline tariffs…the real issues to me are much more grave than the costs to us consumers. The scariest issue is the worlds over consumption of a finite resource…with few apparent plans for when we run out.

No one seems to know for sure when this “Hubberts curve” will happen or if it already has…that being the point where production starts overwhelming supplies and the resources start declining rapidly. It seems from various sources that oil companies and the government have been lying or covering up this issue for a long time.

I wish I was able to attend the The International Conference on Peak Oil and Climate Change: Paths to Sustainability in Grand Rapids, MI this next weekend. I do hope that those who attend will come out with some specific game plans and answers to our national and international dilemma. It seems quite obvious none of the Presidential candidates are making this a hot item in their platforms. Obama was the only one rational and bold enough to state that the temporary elimination of federal gas tax this summer would do little or nothing towards the bigger issues of energy cost and consumption.

I hate to feel negative and dismal, but this issue and our country’s overall “hush hush” about the real issues give me the “willies”. It seems like our governments approach is to just continue fighting it out with our Arab enemies over control of mid-east oil and begging our “good friends” the Saudis to up production and sell us MORE of theirs. And believe me, with the amorality of all governments these days…I believe we will find reasons to invade or take out other governments/countries that stand in our way of fulfilling our greatest mass addiction…oil. As many people know…addicts are by definition dependent, compulsive, out of control, hooked on the stimulus, oblivious to the harm it causes self and others, and causes major withdrawal symptoms when forced to “kick the habit”. I see our world in this light when it comes to the oil/gas crisis.

I would like to leave you in closing with a few startling statements in the article I linked to above that are startling to me:

  • In 2004, Shell finally got caught in a lie about the size of its oil reserves. The company had inflated the stated size of its oil reserves to keep stock share prices high because who wants to invest in a company --- or an industry --- that is going the way of the dinosaurs?

    In a world where 850 million are still going hungry and 3 billion out of 6.5 billion live on less than $2 a day, stagnant oil production means an end to development models based on economic growth. The statistics show that oil production has been flat for more than two years now.

    When speaking of energy issues, politicians will often use the euphemism of energy security, acknowledging that the US has only three percent of the world's oil reserves and warning that most of the rest of it belongs to unfriendly or unstable governments.

    (Many) Republicans are generally in favor of drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) despite the fact that even at peak production it would meet only two percent of American's oil demand.

    But we can't drill our way to self-sufficiency because you can't pump what's not there."



1 comment:

Bibiana said...

Hola Ed, este blog interesante sobre el problema del petroleo a nivel mundial, es como decimos en mi pais (Colombia) "Una papa caliente".
Todos la quieren pero nadie la quiere cargar.
Esto del petroleo en mi opinion, es una cadena muy larga de intereses creados, mucho dinero, poder, politica y todas estas cosas aterradoras que mueven nuestro mundo.
Cada era en nuestra historia tiene su "Talon de Aquiles" en esta nuestra era moderna es el Petroleo. Que vamos a hacer? Que van a hacer los gobiernos al respecto? Que va a hacer el nuevo presidente de USA? Quien finalmente, pienso yo, tendra que decidir que va a pasar con los impuestos subiendo y la vida cara en todos los paises del mundo.
Debe haber una solucion, ya que esta creando mas hambre en el mundo, mas gente pobre y mas gente rica haciendose mas rica.
Ojala, el nuevo presidente de los Estados Unidos, sea el que sea, tenga la suficiente sabiduria y calidad humana para buscar una solucion.
Gracias Ed por introducir otro tema interesante y de fuerza en tus Blogs. Disfruto mucho. Bibiana.