Stuart Staniford on Radio Agonist Tonight at 7p EST

The first 30 minutes of the show is will be a review and discussion of the main events in the media and the world the last several days. The call-in number is 646-915-8560. (please, do remember that this is a show to discuss generalities on the topic, not an in-depth discussion of the complexities of the Hubbert Linearization, eh?). Stuart will be in the second segment, which will start about a half an hour in (7:30ish). They will discuss peak oil and global energy policy.

The show will run for an hour. The show will be live, from 7:00-8:00PM Eastern. An archived version of the show will be available approximately 30 minutes after the show ends.

Good hunting Stu.

Pls note - your link shows a start time of 8pm. I'll have to assume they mean EST, no indication otherwise.


Subscription only?

I can't express how underwhelmed I am with this interview. 15 minutes to go, I'm turning the channel.

Awwww, come on! Don't you like Stuart's wonderful accent?!

Good show Stuart, you came across a a well spoken man of reason.

I concurr.

Do you have some specific and constructive feedback?

The only problem I had was that there should have been a sound check...levels very uneven.

Yes, the levels of sound are very annoying. We're trying to be as patient as we can be with the good folks at BTR ( and they are promising a new control system soon.

I didn't realize you were so big on solar. Very interesting. Have you written anything on your assessment of solar?

Not yet.

I did not hear anything about fission power in your vision of the future? Surely it can scale up faster than solar.

My response is to ask: what did you want us to talk about, and if so, why didn't you call in? It's an interactive world, you know?

If you expected us to discuss the intricacies of peak oil, well, that's not what we do, we paint broad stroke so our readers can better understand what it is you discuss here.

Once again, a big thanks to Stuart! We enjoyed having you on as a guest!

This is one of those weird post-modern Internet things, I guess, where we do a radio interview and then chew it over by blog afterwards :-)

Yeah, Stuart, looks that way. Modernity does have its drawbacks.

Jeeze what do you expect it took me half an hour to get the damn thing working to hear and you want chit chat too? No problem with content, I think it did what can be done in a half hour.

If you have serious technical concerns, please tell me, I need to know this stuff to pass on to the people at, so that we can better trouble shoot and make the service easier and more enjoyable for folks. So, if you had difficulties getting the stream, let me know.

Hello SP,

I did the download version, but I had to nearly constantly adjust sound levels depending upon who was speaking at the time: your volume was too high, SS was too low, the other speaker's volume varied too. Hope this helps future shows.

Hi Sean, thanks for asking. My main problem is age and not being of generation 'Blog'. And I don't think there is a remedy for either problem that a good slide down the other side of the PO slope won't cure. I was a child of the radio (no screen) and we had two knobs one for each hand, that's it, just one to turn it on and the other to go for analogue station changes. Then we would dance. Pretty simple Huh?

One thing that could be done, generally, is using basic English or giving a glossary of terms. As an instance of what I mean, I have never used a forum before being here on the oil drum and it was really a mystery how to proceed other than by jumping in. I couldn't find a place that explained things like thread parent subthread etc. I also didn't know how things should be posted as to order etc., so I guess what I would like to have on entering a site is a primer on basic procedures with glossary .

Hello SS & SP,

Good job!--a basic politically correct intro for Peakoil newbies. Glad to see you informed the listeners the basic facts behind KSA decline.

When is the show going to present a [James Kunstler, Jay Hanson, Matt Savinar, Jim Hansen, James Lovelock] full-upchuck flavor of the dire PO + GW Thermo/Gene Collision--the politically incorrect, genetic legacy version?

Inquiring Minds want to know.

Bob Shaw in Phx,Az Are Humans Smarter than Yeast?

Hi Bob,

Why wait for all those mentioned? I suggest you propose yourself.

Among your qualifications:
1) you authored at least one original version of "thermo/gene"*, as you said,
2) you've done ( or at least thought about) some interesting "outreach" (I'd very much like your golf course conversion concept to get a wider audience)
3) plus you seem to keep up on Mexico, certainly of current interest.

I'd just say...keep in present a more complete explanation of what the (I don't have it down exactly) catchy term is for your idea about successful mitigation paths. (Bio-solar habitats?)

(*I'd also be sure to include any critiques or commentaries of "thermo/gene", if you can find them. On this I might be helpful.)

Also, I'd suggest talking about *why* it's "politically incorrect"...?

Bob should have his own blog. He is my favorite PO blog/forum poster!

Seriously Bob, think about it. I'll link to whatever you post, both informative and humorous.

I've never had any contact with Richard Rainwater but if he ever contacted me and said "I'm building a compound . . . got any ideas?" I'd say "well my friend Bob Shaw has something called the 'the biosolar detritus plan'. . . "


When you come out and explain, using science, why 5 plus billion of us are dead meat . . . well that is politically incorrect.

Hi Chimp,

Thanks for including me in your post here.

Are you saying that you are sure, using science, of the fate of approx. 5/6 of us?

And by science, I wonder, which of the sciences in regard to what? Oil? Resources in general? Ideas about human nature? Or, is it concerning resource depletion, coupled with the *expectation* about a lack of ability to respond in a way that mitigates suffering? (Does my question make sense?) (It's somewhat rhetorical, but not really.)
Anyway, Stuart, I'm posting on your thread w/out yet listening to your presentation. I'm looking forward to it.

Are you saying that you are sure, using science, of the fate of approx. 5/6 of us?


Or, is it concerning resource depletion, coupled with the *expectation* about a lack of ability to respond in a way that mitigates suffering?

Expectation? "mitigate suffering" Surely you jest. You have been paying attention to the news stories linked up here on TOD and other Peak Oil blogs and alternative media outlets such as LATOC, have you not?

It's *observation*. The Judeo-Christian Tribes and their allies are now engaged in a *permanent* war with the Islamic tribes and their allies. Unlike wars of yesteryear where the tribes slaughtered each other using spears and other primitive weaponary (read "The Bible") they are now armed with nuclear weapons, genetically-modified bioweapons, super sonic jet fighters, space-based weapons, 1000 round a minute gatling guns, cluster bombs, depleted uranium munitions, etc.

Collectively there are 20,000 nuclear weapons in existence. Per-capita energy production will soon start falling at 5% or more per year. A new generation of hydrogen bombs has been commissioned by the chiefs of the Judeo-Christian tribe occupying North America. (The elders of the Chinese tribe are also rapidly arming themselves.) This new generation of hydrogen bombs, all these armaments are not being procured for shits and giggles. They're being procured because the tribes are about to slaughter each other in the pursuit of life-support resources. That's how they plan to "mitigate suffering": kill the other side and grab their energy, make them and theirs suffer more than us and ours.

As far as science if you understand evolution, you see what is at work here: there will be lots of cooperation within the tribe, paritcularly when trying to slaughter the OTHER tribe. (This is where a sense "community" comes in be it for mutual defense against outsiders or to go off and kill them and grab their stuff.)

I'm not *expecting* anything. I'm simply *observing* it unfold.

I think what's going on is that Aniya had this rosy picture in her mind that the military industrial complex would collapse, the sun would come out and the people, finally realizing the "truth", would hold hands and share.
The concept that people will kill each other for a handful of rice doesn't 'grok' for her. The idea that world leaders might intentionally kill billions is so over the top for her it is 'freaking her out'.

My guess is it's something like that.

Hi Cid and Chimp,

Thanks for responding. I realized after I posted, that I jumped in to "talk", without having heard Stuart's interview...and I still haven't. So, apologies, Stuart.

Perhaps we can talk about this in another place. If you'd like to know one way or the other "what's in her head", i.e, how I think and how I see things, I'd really like it if you'd pose it as a question (to me), (or to everyone, for that matter), instead of a guess.

Hello Aniya,

I would like to see the all-star firepower of my aforementioned cast, plus Jared Diamond, do it first for greater public punch. Ideally, in a four hour or longer televised format. After that ground-breaking effort: it would be much easier for the less well-known or less influential people to carry the ball.

I am not much of a public speaker.

Bob Shaw in Phx,Az Are Humans Smarter than Yeast?

Hey Stuart I did not hear your interview but I just want to post this. I'll also post later in a new drum beat.

We basically do not need to wait at all to see if KSA has peaked. We know now that stocks are being drawn down and the world is under supplied OPEC has agreed to keep production constant. Therefore from now on KSA has no reason to decrease production all of their goals are met. So we should see flat to rising production from them from now on out. So if it goes down next month we know that depletion is playing a big role.

If they flatten then we know they are either bring some reserves online to cover depletion or the whole decline was voluntary probably a mix. The important point is continued declines in production no longer make sense.

I've spent the evening digging in SPE papers published since Matt Simmons wrote Twilight in the Desert, and boy do I have some interesting pictures for my next post .... :-) :-)

Thanks like I don't read the Oil Drum enough now I'm going to have to check for your post :)

Stuart Staniford, you say "I've spent the evening digging in SPE papers published since Matt Simmons wrote Twilight in the Desert, and boy do I have some interesting pictures for my next post .... :-) :-)

O.K., folks let's clear the floor and kick the rug out of the way for some dancin'......Stuart has some big stuff in the works.....Robert Rapier says he has some big explosive studies to show us regard HL...and we are now getting down to short time when the GAO and NPC reports are to hit the presses.....

So now I learn whether to buy that new 12 cylinder S-Class Benz I been eyeballing and live large riding out the last great luxury carbon bath....or get out the welder and handtools and start building that peddle powered Velomobile that even an old man can ride....:-)

Heading Out, rest up, you are going to have some heavy refereein' to do.....remember, no hits below the belt, come out clean....

edit: opps, forgot to ask, I was at work when the interview was on, are you really a fan of solar?....if so, geee, I want to be just like you when I grow up...:-) Seriously, let's hear more about this solar thing....thin film or thermal, silicon or CIS.....? the solar field is cooking in ways that few here are seemingly even aware of...

Roger Conner Jr.
Remember, we are only one cubic mile from freedom

I just don't think the seriousness of the issue was emphasized enough, though that is partially just Stuart's laid back demeanor - but I was ASTONISHED when Stuart said the #1 thing we can do (short term) is increase the fuel efficiency of our cars. What? The most important short term solution is to BUILD MORE CARS??? Sorry but that's just naive - a realistic response involves a massive project of increasing public transportation, electrification of rail, car pooling, etc... it takes resources to make those new cars for everyone, why waste them on a dead end future when electrification gives such a greater bang for the buck?!6B200P0

He did mention that less and less energy will be available, but one listening gets the feeling it's not that big a deal!!
What about the fact that exponential growth is the key to industrialized economies, and that all bets are off when Energy Descent hits (now!).

It shouldn't have been a surprise. Stuart's post, The Auto-Efficiency Wedge, makes clear that public transportion won't - can't - make much of a difference.

Yep. Stuart's message is "The bad news is the fuel that powers the entire car culture is depleting. The goood news is we can mitigate this by building more cars."

A politically correct meme if there ever was one.

You can get more sense of why I believe what I believe from Why We Drive, and A few more transit stats.

It is also my view. Cars use most of our oil, say 2/3, and we need to cut consumption say 2-4%/y. So, replacing the fleet over ten years with prius technology will drop consumption maybe 60%, much more than we need, and this is without any other change in behavour, such as carpooling, minimizing trips, moving closer to work, etc. ANd, I have to assume that the prius can be improved, there are rumors that the next version will be much more efficient. Then, plug ins will come along later, with replacement of coal/ng with nukes/solar for electrical generation.

IMO we can cut fossil fuel consumption 2-4% for at least decades without serious difficulty. HOwever, we need a driver in the form of much higher cost, say at least 200/b. NG is likely to be the real crunch point because all the peaking plants are now ng fired and we are near the cliff... indeed, canada has imo gone over the cliff.

Does S have a slight Scottish accent?

... time for some haggis!


I wish somebody somewhere would note that world oil consumption in 1988 was the same as in 1978. That was 10 years.
Why? A boost in prices in the late 1970s. That led to a decline in consumption, and renewed growth only when prices dropped.
The same thing is happening now. Look for flat fossil fuel consumption.
I know CERA is the bad guys in this group, but if their estimate of 4.8 trillion barrels of recoverable oil is right, and if fossil oil demand flatlines, we have oil for a long, long time, at higher, but not economy-killing, prices.
No drama is this scenario, I know. But it seems as likely as other scenarios.

BenjaminCole said,

"No drama is this scenario, I know. But it seems as likely as other scenarios."

And equally as dangerous. The EIA of the U.S. Department of Energy sees fuel prices no higher than we have already seen out to 2030. If that is now the consensus view, you can kiss any chance of mitigation or change goodbye. We just keep gulping down fuel and watch our wealth flood out of the country on more and more money spent buying oil. Your right, no real drama, we just backslide into being one of the power nations of the world, right at the time the country become a giant indoor outdoor old folks home...."so it ends not with a bang, but with a whimper."

Roger Conner Jr.
Remember, we are only one cubic mile from freedom

"but if their estimate of 4.8 trillion barrels of recoverable oil is right, and if fossil oil demand flatlines, we have oil for a long, long time, at higher, but not economy-killing, prices.

You suffer from the same lack of understanding that so many others do. First things first, the 4.8 trillion is based on adding in things like oil shale and tar sands to conventional oil production. Oil shale and tar sands don't shoot up out of the ground under high pressure and flow through a pipeline then into a tanker on its way to an American refinery. They don't produce oil at rates that allow us to keep our current economic paradigm. Our economic system is built upon, and depends on, cheap, easy to get at oil in ever increasing quantities.

Oil shale and tar sands can't replace the fundamental nature of liquid oil in the ground. No matter what you do you will never get 30 million barrels per day of oil production from shale of tar sands. And that is the key thing to remember when discussing peak oil. As the easy oil dries up it leaves us with costly, low producing oil equivalents that can't be produced fast enough to keep our global economy moving forward.

I agree there's extremely large amounts of low quality sources that are very capital intensive to develop. What I note is that the average lifetime of the equipment on the demand side (cars) is much shorter (years) than that on the supply side (decades). So I think the demand side response will preempt much of the supply side ultra-heavy/tar/CTL response (just from free-market price-driven behavior). And by the time the ultra-heavy stuff is starting to seriously ramp up, hopefully we will have some sanity in our climate stabilization policy (since the free-market is not going to price those externalities in in a timely way) and we can leave most of that stuff in the ground where it belongs.

Ben: The engine of the world economy circa 2007 (China) was relatively tiny during the period 78-88. All these references to the 70s are talking about a world that no longer exists and will never return.

GHAWAR - the correct pronounciation is:
gh= french r (gutteral, like clearing your throat)
Enjoyed the interview, and your posts in the last two weeks have made me a TOD addict.


Thx. One of the drawbacks of working on a subject entirely via blogging is you never have to actually say any of the words (something that hadn't really occurred to me till yesterday...).

At the risk of sounding pedantic, if you really want to get the pronounciation right, the second 'r' has to be rolling (like a spanish r) and the second 'a' a long one , so


As you say, a bit complicated to get across in a textual medium.