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The article itself is rather dismissive, even if it seems to think that peakoilers can usefully be ridden on to "curb dependence". Sigh...


Peak no evil

(...)

Even if the world's total amount of oil can be established - estimates vary wildly - better technology means the proportion that can be pumped out increases over time. Since 1980, this has risen, on average, from a fifth to more than a third, boosting recoverable reserves. In spite of rising consumption, the ratio of oil reserves to output has been pretty constant since the late 1980s. Today's high oil prices also make complex sources, such as oil sands, viable and damp consumption.

Oil output is not just a function of geology. "Surface" factors such as Opec have a huge impact. Indeed, geopolitics and environmental concerns provide enough reasons to curb dependence on oil for transportation. If the noise generated by the peak oil debate adds to the sense of urgency in addressing this, it will serve some useful purpose.



In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes
by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Wed Jan 2nd, 2008 at 08:40:27 PM EST
[ Parent ]
This seems to be the best demonstration why the marketistas are leading us into crisis.  They assume that demand creates supply, so that so long as there is increased demand for oil there will be increase supply.  After all that's the logic of the market, but it's idiotic.  

Oil was not made by the market, and ultimately no amount of demand is going to make new oil once its all we've burnt it all up.  It's the very essence of what Karl Polanyi said in the Great Transformation. Land is a fictitious commodity, oil was not created by the market, and eventually there's just not going to be enough oil. And this is true of most other commodities as well.  The market doesn't make them, so it just doesn't make sense to pretend that it does.

And I'll give my consent to any government that does not deny a man a living wage-Billy Bragg

by ManfromMiddletown (manfrommiddletown at lycos dot com) on Wed Jan 2nd, 2008 at 09:13:07 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Actually, it does. For a while. Longer for some (mineral oil) than for others (whale oil) and even practically forever for some (iron).

And anyway, in the long run...

Peak oil is not an energy crisis. It is a liquid fuel crisis.

by Starvid on Thu Jan 3rd, 2008 at 06:51:20 AM EST
[ Parent ]
It harvests them, and transforms them into economic resources, but it does not make them.


I've been accused of being a Marxist, yet while Harpo's my favourite, it's Groucho I'm always quoting. Odd, that.
by BruceMcF (agila61 at netscape dot net) on Thu Jan 3rd, 2008 at 10:13:42 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The market doesn't make them, so it just doesn't make sense to pretend that it does.

That what I meant makes sense. For a while.

Peak oil is not an energy crisis. It is a liquid fuel crisis.
by Starvid on Thu Jan 3rd, 2008 at 11:57:43 AM EST
[ Parent ]
In the FT sense of the phrase ... can help contribute to ensuring that those who are currently winners continue to win ... yes, it may make sense to pretend they are what they are not.

From the perspective of understanding what is going on around us, it doesn't make sense to pretend that fictitious commodities are products of the market in either the long term or the short term.


I've been accused of being a Marxist, yet while Harpo's my favourite, it's Groucho I'm always quoting. Odd, that.

by BruceMcF (agila61 at netscape dot net) on Thu Jan 3rd, 2008 at 12:02:19 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Jerome a Paris:
Oil output is not just a function of geology.

No, of course not. But it seems to dance around the fact that if we can solve the other functions influencing output, the geological finity to oil will also disappear in a puff of happy smoke...

by Nomad on Thu Jan 3rd, 2008 at 06:41:45 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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