The stall precedes the tailspin.

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peakoil.jpgWhen you understand the way the oil industry works, and the fact that the cheap oil era is over, it changes the way you read the news. 

Oil output is more or less at peak, the point at which about half of it has been used up, and that means production's levelled off ahead of a more or less steep decline. 

For instance, this weekend's SoS noted that "World oil production has stalled at about 85 million barrels a day since 2005", while at the same time not poking fun at Ministers from oil consuming nations who called for extraction to increase. 

Fellers, it can't, because you're at the peak. There's nothing you can do, even with a blowtorch. Even if you could get more out in the short term, through secondary recovery or similar techniques, it'd just make the decline sharper and more painful.

Actually, what they should be doing is listening to the Libyans, whose oil chief said yesterday "The easy, cheap oil is over, peak oil is looming". 

So the question for leaders, including Salmond, is this. Pretend we can get by on business as usual for generations to come, or prepare for a post-oil economy?


Pointy stick time is upon us!

You christened it, my dear, and we still use the term, but only in private. Shh!

And don't forget the human rights abuses that happen in the name of oil extraction, something which I wish more people would point out to Salmond (Er, OK that's my job).

I am currently arranging for a film crew to go to Canada to film the lives of an indigenous community in Alberta, the Lubicon Cree whose lives, health and future have been devastated by the relentless greed of the extractive industries. The extraction of North Sea oil MAY not have as devastating impact on human rights but is owned by the same companies that blight the lives of thousands world-wide.

Tony Hayward gets a doing here:

some stuff we're working on at the mo...commission and council looking to launch (soon) the EIB into full-on extractives grazing mode in Central Asia, a region outside the EU as you know....and the EIB has no binding standards for activities outside the EU...though we're working on that bit an all

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This page was published on June 9, 2008 6:42 PM.

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