Ever increasing oil prices are explained in a multitude of ways: greedy commodity traders or greedy oil companies who refuse to build refineries because the cost cuts into profits. But what about greedy consumers? And what happens when the oil runs out? If experts agree that we’re pretty much already at peak oil production now (either right before, right on, or right after) then the question is one you’ve heard before. What is to be done? The answer is stunningly obvious, for those who care to think about it. The system of endless growth and consumption has to change.
Interview with Pedro Prieto, Vice President of the Association for the Study of Peak Oil (ASPO) – by Alex Fernández Muerza for Consumer Eroski
Since 2006, Spain’s membership in ASPO has been represented by AEREN, the Association for the Study of Energy Resources. ASPO (Association for the Study of Peak Oil) is a network of organizations in more than 20 countries dedicated to the study of peak oil – the moment at which maximum oil production is reached and afterwards begins its decline. Its Vice President, Pedro Prieto (Madrid, 1950), doesn’t mince words: he stresses that no more than three decades worth of oil remain, insists that the energy situation in Spain is dire, that the days of gas and nuclear power are numbered as well, and insists that the defenders of renewable energy are well removed from reality. In his opinion, without a reduction in the consumption of energy and a radical change in the present development model, it’s impossible to tackle the approaching energy and social crisis. In October, ASPO will hold its 7th annual conference in Barcelona.
Fernández Muerza: Is the strike by the truckers and fishing fleets over higher fuel costs a symptom of the end of oil?
Prieto: It’s one more episode that will happen more often as it’s confirmed that worldwide oil production has reached its peak, without a predictable substitute on the horizon for oil (and no time to think of one), which is being consumed at the rate of 85 million barrels a day and on which 95% of transportation is based, worldwide. Continue reading