Tag Archives: peak oil

The straight dope about oil (and renewables)

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.

Oil Will Fall to Disastrous Levels in 30 Years or Less

Interview with Pedro Prieto, Vice President of the Association for the Study of Peak Oil (ASPO) – by Alex Fernández Muerza for Consumer Eroski

Translaton: Machetera

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

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Oil at $20,000 a barrel

This article deals with the media manipulation and stock market frenzy surrounding the recent “discovery” of a huge oilfield off the coast of Brazil, but it also talks in a very plain manner about the clear indications that oil is running out. The recent spike in food prices is no coincidence, and prices will not be coming down. Ever.

The article is rather long and as you may have noticed, the Machetera blog does not have a print function. She’s working on it. In the meantime you may want to copy and paste the article to a word processing document and print it out from there. It is well worth the trouble and you can put it by your bedside to think about in the middle of the night, since you won’t be getting much sleep after you read it.

The Last Great Black Hope

The Carioca oilfield “discovery” off the coast of Brazil, in light of media disinformation and stock market speculation

Pedro Prieto – Rebelión

Translation: Machetera

The world press, especially the Western press and specifically the financial press, has jumped all over the headlines of the discovery of a huge oil field in Brazil’s continental shelf.

It’s a concession within a series of blocks or zones earmarked for exploration, over which very little technical data has been offered and which apparently involve the Brazilian company Petrobrás, the Spanish company Repsol-YPF and the British concern, British Gas. The press in each country involved (an involvement created when the head offices of these enormous multinational firms are in a certain country and have close links with political power in their country of residence) has exulted in the discoveries, as something truly impressive. So much so, that stock markets have experienced significant fluctuations.

Naturally, if verified, it would be the greatest discovery in several decades and would skew, to a certain extent, the observed tendency toward a steady but inexorable decline in the volume of the world’s discovered petroleum, while worldwide consumption continues its relentless increase.

Peak Oil and its Impact

This trend was emphasized a decade ago by Colin Campbell and Jean Laherrere, two important oil geologists, who published a well-known article titled “The End of Cheap Oil,” in Scientific American, which touched on the problem of the arrival at the maximum limits of production of a substance as vital as petroleum, and what it would mean for humanity, given that logically and obviously, oil’s geological and physical limitations are finite; its underground formation taking tens of millions of years under geologic pressure and temperature, but its exhaustion by man taking place in barely two hundred years, with the proverbial voracity of an industrial capitalist society in perpetual growth.

Continue reading