Skip to comments.Daniel Yergin and Peak Oil - Prophet or Mere Historian?
Posted on 09/21/2011 7:16:14 AM PDT by bananaman22
On 17 September The Wall Street Journal published a fascinating article on peak oil, There Will Be Oil, written by Daniel Yergin, chairman of IHS Cambridge Energy Research Associates, an energy research and consulting firm and deserved recipient of Pulitzer Prize for his 1991 book, The Prize: The Epic Quest for Oil, Money and Power.
According to The Wall Street Journal, There Will Be Oil is adapted from his new book, The Quest: Energy, Security and the Remaking of the Modern World.
The essay will doubtless have widespread influence amongst prosperous The Wall Street Journal readers, but in his glib dismissal of peak oil theory advocates, Yergin glosses or ignores a number of issues fundamental to the larger picture, for whatever reason, and these oversights should be considered in any evaluation of the piece and the peak oil specter.
Yergin notes, Just in the years 2007 to 2009, for every barrel of oil produced in the world, 1.6 barrels of new reserves were added. But this fails to take into account the following points.
First is that for oil producing nations reserves are like money in the bank and inflated reserve figures are common. Even with the newest technology oil reserve figures remain at best guesstimates and should not be taken as hard and fast figures.
Secondly, while the Middle East for the foreseeable future will remain the worlds top producing area, it is unhappily also one of the most politically unstable regions of the world. The Arab Springs impact is still playing out, much less potential impact of Palestines incipient bid at the United Nations for recognition, both of which could yet still throw a major spanner in the works.
To recap briefly:
Saudi Arabia, the worlds first or second-largest producer, vying with the Russian Federation for top position, is not immune from either of the two aforementioned effects. Saudi Arabia does not allow foreign oil companies concessions and has adopted a strict conservation policy, so dont expect to see a massive rise in production there anytime soon. As for Palestines impact, last week former head of Saudi Arabian intelligence and ex-ambassador to Washington, Prince Turki al-Faisal in an essay in the New York Times warned that an American veto of Palestinian U.N. membership would end the ''special relationship'' between the two countries, and make the US ''toxic'' in the Arab world.
As for Iraq, eight years after the U.S.-led invasion, holder of massive amounts of untapped reserves, the country remains mired in a low-grade civil war and unresolved political issues between its oil-rich northern Kurdish region and Baghdad. Further east, Iran is most unlikely to boost production significantly anytime soon because of U.S. sanctions imposed in 1979. Full article at: Daniel Yergin and Peak Oil - Prophet or Mere Historian?
Didn’t read the article, commenting anyway, because I can.
“Peak oil” is a myth. Oil is being MANUFACTURED by the earth every day. Molten lava is creating oil very quickly, not the millions of years as previous thought. (Which of course would be IMPOSSIBLE anyway since the earth is only THOUSANDS of years old)
You heard it here first; the next shoe to drop will be an Arab Oil Embargo of the West.