Welcome New Readers: Introductions and Primers

Peak Oil Overview: http://www.theoildrum.com/node/4041

Peak Oil - Whom to Believe? Part 1 - There's Plenty of Oil, CERAiously: http://www.theoildrum.com/node/4020

Note also the primers section in the right sidebar. You can also search for any research topic on The Oil Drum by using our tag system or the search box in the upper right sidebar. If you have any questions, let us know.

Thanks Prof. and welcome all new readers!

Maybe it would also be useful for new readers to have a list of the common acronyms used on TOD as well, to make some of the comments more decipherable to the uninitiated (it took me months to realise that BAU meant 'business as usual').

I know I'm a relative newbie but here's a quick list of some of my favourites:

ASPO - Association for the Study of Peak Oil & Gas

BAU - Business as Usual

BOE or bboe - Barrel of Oil Equivalent

BTU - British Thermal Unit

CCS - Carbon capture and storage

CERA - Cambridge Energy Research Associates

EIA - Energy Information Administration

EROEI (or EROI) - Energy Returned on Energy Invested

ICE - Internal Combustion Engine

IEA - International Energy Agency (not to be confused with EIA!)

LATOC - Life After the Oil Crash (website)

PO - Peak Oil

TEOTWAWKI - The End of the World as We Know It

TOD - The Oil Drum (or Transit Oriented Development)

TPTB - The Powers-that-be

WTSHTF - When the Faecal Matter Makes Contact with the _______ (insert sports team of your choice) Supporter

I'll get my coat...

We also have a list of acronyms here:

Super G, I don't know if how difficult it is to solve but, one can quite easily miss the acronym guide in the FAQs. I think a link directly to the acronym guide on the home page would be a godsend to us newbies. I was thrown by a couple over the past weekend and when I asked, nobody told me about the acronym guide. It wouldn't have helped anyway since IHNSHO (in his not so humble opinion) is not in the guide, neither is WAG (wild ass guess).

Thanks, Super G.

I had no idea there was an acronymn guide. It's as though I've just been shown the TOD equivalent of the Rosetta Stone.

Any chance the link to this could be made more obvious?

Thanks for all the great work you do here :)

one more acronym: KSA (Kingdom of Saudi Arabia) which seems to throw many newcomers.


The one that always throws me off balance is RR: Railroad. :-)

TEOTWAWKI - The End of the World as We Know It

AIFF - And I feel fine.

Hence the oft heard expression, "It's TEOTWAWKI, AIFF."


(Hint: It's from an old REM song, and this is a joke, because laughter may be the only strategy that will work.)

A good time to thank the Editors and Contributors for adding so much to our understanding.


1. When the last of the oil has "run out",
2. When plentiful "reserves" hit the halfway point,
3. A cult.

Before you start your deep tech dive into what PO is, learn to spot the ruses and deceptions used by the deniers (or "cornucopians" as some of us call them on The Oil Drum (TOD)).

1. Lie number one should be self-obvious and yet it is deceptively appealing.

The oil will never "run out" because one last drop will linger in that antique oil can in Aunt Millie's garage. Another drop will linger between the rock pores at the bottom of an exhausted oil well. And so on.

The oil can never "run out". The trick is to understand why it gets harder and harder to milk out that next of the droplets from between the rocks and why the drops get smaller and smaller in size. Those who deny Peak Oil like to set up the "run out" straw man as a ruse for demonstrating why Peak Oilers are wrong. Watch out. The starting premise is irrational. Peak Oilers do not and cannot believe that the "oil will run out".

2. Lie number 2 takes advantage of the symmetry seen in the classic Hubbert's Curve. However, few in the PO crowd believe that decline will be perfectly symmetrical with the ascent or that the peak (in production rate) MUST occur at the halfway point. Know what the term, "proved reserves" means. It's a tricky concept.

3. The debates at TOD are lively and many differing points of view are entertained. Cults don't allow for critical thinking. If someone tries to absolutely shut you down when you suggest that Peak Oil might be real, that person is part of a cult.

Fellow TODers, I need help,

When compiling my own collection of texts and videos about PO, I remembered one short video that I cannot find any more. It depicts young fellow who looks like typical drug addict before getting his usual fix. Everything alludes that he is about to get it, he is in a hurry, nervous. And then in the last scene, it was revealed that he was really a gas addict, when he puts gas in his car. With a big *Sigh* of relief.

Does anybody have a link to that video? Thanks in advance.