Drumbeat: November 9, 2009

Saudi Aramco Will Increase Asia’s December Oil Supply

(Bloomberg) -- Saudi Arabian Oil Co. will supply more crude to refiners in Asia as rising prices threaten to hurt the world economic recovery.

Saudi Aramco, as the company is known, will provide 100 percent of cargoes under long-term contracts for the first time in a year next month, according to a Bloomberg News survey of refinery officials in Japan, South Korea, China and Thailand, who asked not to be identified because of confidential agreements. The refiners will receive between 85 percent and 90 percent in November.

Big Oil's New Lean Look: 'Glory Days' May Be Over

Houston's energy economy has clearly felt the sting of an unprecedented drop in crude and natural gas prices, with more than 18,000 jobs lost in past months.

But recent downsizing moves by Royal Dutch Shell, ConocoPhillips and other oil and gas companies appear to go beyond the typical bottom-of-the-cycle belt tightening.

They suggest a permanent shift toward doing more with less -- in what could be a troubling trend for Houston.

Kunstler: Dreams Die Hard

Reality unfolds emergently, and this ought to interest us. For instance, I have maintained for many years that we are approaching the twilight of the automobile age - and the implications of this for daily life in the USA are pretty large. For a long time, I had assumed that this change of circumstances would proceed from our problems with the oil supply. But reality is sly. It has thrown two new plot twists into the story lately. America's romance with cars may not founder just on the fuel supply question. It now appears that our problems with capital are so severe that far fewer people will be able to borrow money from banks to buy cars at the rate, and in the way, that the system has been organized to depend on. Our problems with capital are also depriving us of the ability to pay to fix the hypercomplex system of county roads, interstate highways, and even city streets that make motoring possible. What will we do?

Peak oil? Ask an oilman

We’ve all been reading and hearing about peak oil—that there is a fixed amount of crude oil in the earth, and we have by now extracted so much that the supply will soon pass the point of diminishing return, if it already hasn’t. Some deny it, some shrug it off, but once we get past the knee-jerk reactions, the real story is more complex.

Since 1995, John B. Hess has been chairman and CEO of Hess Corp., a global player in oil and gas exploration and production with 2008 sales of more than $42 billion. That qualifies him as a real oilman, but don’t rush to judgment.

On Oct. 21, Hess spoke at the Oil & Money Conference, and here’s how he concluded his talk: “What kind of world do we want to leave to our children? If we do nothing, there will be severe consequences. Skyrocketing prices could become a way of life in a crisis-led world.” But he’s not fomenting panic by any means.

Warning light is on for OPEC over Iraqi oil deals

The US seeks independence from crude imports, and the greying of Japan’s population points to a steady decline in oil consumption by Asia’s largest economy. But the latest threat to OPEC comes from one of its own.

Last week, Iraq, a founding member of the 12-nation group of oil exporters, signed three huge deals with foreign energy firms that in seven years could nearly triple the country’s output capacity to more than 7 million barrels per day (bpd).

Saudi plans boost to petro production

Saudi Arabia plans on boosting petrochemical production in the kingdom by adding new plants which will rely less on gas and more on liquid hydrocarbons for feedstock, the country's oil minister has said.

Nearly half of Saudi gas is produced as a by product of crude, so volumes fluctuate with oil output.

Iran lines up Russian deals

Iran's oil ministry said it was in talks with a Russian oil company to develop three oilfields in the Islamic state, according to reports.

Iran, the world's fifth-largest crude exporter, has struggled to attract the money and technology to develop its oil and gas fields as international sanctions and political pressures have kept foreign companies away.

The great natural gas conundrum

Nebulous, drifting, volatile: all good ways to describe both natural gas and the conflicted outlook for the commodity among industry experts at the moment.

Jan Lundberg: Gasoline Price Causing Big-Vehicle Sales

The retail price of gasoline in the U.S. is extremely low, not just compared to the summer of 2008. Subsidies both direct and hidden create a true cost at least a few times higher than the visible price. The actual cost is paid largely through income taxes (such as for wars in the Middle East and domestic infrastructure), in the purchase of goods and services associated with "free" parking, and even medical care for car/fuel related mortality and morbidity. When the average gasoline price is $2.66 a gallon, according to news reports on the most recent Lundberg Survey, the message to the consumer is "Buy that big vehicle."

Out of Pretoria, out of power

The poor in the South African townships are feeling the brunt of it already, a growing electricity crisis that will squeeze already meagre household incomes, spur inflation, add to the costs of essential foods, and raise transport costs in a country whose mass transport systems are utterly inadequate. Already saddled with a more than 30% hike in metered power costs for this year, they were told to expect a hike of a further 150% over the next three years.

Philippine oil firms may halt imports - officials

MANILA (Reuters) - Philippine oil companies may halt imports of refined petroleum products as losses mount from a state-imposed cap on fuel prices, company and government officials said on Monday.

The Philippine government ordered oil firms last month to maintain pump prices on the main island of Luzon at Oct. 15 levels to help consumers cope with rebuilding costs after the onslaught of recent typhoons.

Kurt Cobb: Immigration and our ecological predicament

Whenever the word immigration is mentioned, two polarized camps almost immediately emerge. One camp considers new residents an asset, bringing new ideas and entrepreneurial zeal to a society, while the other considers immigration a bane, bringing crime, disease, poverty and culturally disruptive practices.

Only very rarely mentioned by those opposing immigration is a concern that the host country has run out of carrying capacity and cannot afford to feed, clothe, educate and keep healthy any more people. Immigration opponents may claim that their home country cannot afford additional people. But, by this they do not ordinarily mean that the population and the economy of the country should cease to grow. They simply mean they do not wish to share any growth with newcomers.

Oil at $100 Doesn’t Compute as OPEC Output Pace Grows

(Bloomberg) -- OPEC is increasing output at the fastest pace in two years, adding to near-record inventories and threatening speculators betting on $100 crude with losses.

The number of options contracts to buy oil at $100 by March almost quadrupled in October and increased another 5.9 percent so far this month. As traders piled in, OPEC boosted production 4 percent, or 1.1 million barrels a day, since March amid the worst global recession since World War II.

Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah has targeted $75 oil as a fair price for consumers and producers and has the capacity to increase pumping by about 50 percent, or 4 million barrels a day, enough for all of Brazil. The prospect of more supply comes with inventories in industrial countries already the highest since 1998, when oil collapsed to $10.

Crude Oil Rises as Hurricane Ida Disrupts Output, Dollar Drops

(Bloomberg) -- Crude oil rose from a one-week low as Hurricane Ida entered the Gulf of Mexico, forcing BP Plc and Chevron Corp. to cut output.

Crude climbed above $78 a barrel as companies evacuated workers in the Gulf of Mexico, an area that accounts for 27 percent of U.S. crude production and 15 percent of natural gas output. The dollar declined against 14 of its 16 major counterparts, making commodities more attractive as alternative investments.

Oil Producers Move Staff, Halt Output on Hurricane

(Bloomberg) -- Oil companies in the Gulf of Mexico are evacuating workers and halting some output as Hurricane Ida strengthened after entering the area, which accounts for more than a quarter of U.S. crude production.

BP Plc evacuated non-essential staff and shut some of its Gulf output. “Some precautionary curtailment of production has taken place,” BP said in a recorded statement on its hotline. Ida is the first storm to disrupt output in the Gulf this hurricane season, which runs from June to November.

All change as gas reserves soar

With coal being too dirty and wind farms and nuclear power plants arriving late, it seems the world is left with a stark choice: keep on polluting or turn out the lights.

Unless, that is, someone comes up with an alternative.

Energy executive Rune Bjornson thinks he has the answer.

"Natural gas, more than any other fuel, is an option we have here and now," he tells the BBC in an interview.

And, he adds, there is plenty of it around - unlike scarcer resources such as oil and coal.

Gazprom Boosts European Gas Exports on Quarter as Prices Slump

(Bloomberg) -- OAO Gazprom, the world’s largest natural-gas producer, boosted sales volumes to Europe and countries outside the former Soviet Union by 5.4 percent in the second quarter after prices slumped.

Gazprom sold 39.1 billion cubic meters of gas to the region, its largest export market, up from 37.1 billion cubic meters in the first quarter, the Moscow-based company said in a statement on its Web site today.

Russian gas giant Gazprom says net profits halved in first half of 2009

MOSCOW (AP) — Russian gas company Gazprom saw profit cut in half in the first six months of the year as the cost of natural gas it buys from Central Asia soared and demand plummetted in Europe.

The world's largest producer of natural gas on Monday reported net profit of 305.8 billion rubles ($10.6 billion) for the period, down from 609.3 billion rubles, according to financial results calculated to international standards.

Iraq Minister Says Three Oilfields to Pump 6 Million Barrels

Asked when his country might commit to supply gas to Nabucco, al-Shahristani said: “We do not expect in the near future or the coming few years to be able to provide dry gas or LNG to the international market before meeting our domestic demand.”

Rising gas supply will be used at first for local electricity production and may later be exported. Liquefied natural gas, or LNG, is gas that’s cooled to a liquid form for easier transportation by ship.

Qatar Raises Natural-Gas Supply Through Dolphin to U.A.E., Oman

(Bloomberg) -- Qatar increased supply of natural gas through the Dolphin pipeline to the United Arab Emirates and Oman as the holder of the world’s third-largest reserves boosts production amid a slump in global demand.

Chavez to troops: Prepare for war with Colombia

CARACAS, Venezuela — President Hugo Chavez ordered Venezuela's military on Sunday to prepare for a possible armed conflict with Colombia, saying the country's soldiers should be ready if the United States attempts to provoke a war between the South American neighbors.

China Gives Africa $10 Billion as It Fights Exploitation Charge

(Bloomberg) -- China promised $10 billion in cheap loans to Africa, pledged to cut customs duties and distributed a newspaper with photos of Chinese leaders among beaming Africans, as part of an effort to fight claims it is exploiting the continent’s minerals.

China’s interest in Africa “is not what Western reports described, that China went to Africa only for the energy,” Premier Wen Jiabao told Chinese reporters Saturday at the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation conference in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, according to the government-owned China Daily newspaper.

In Yemen, a Flash of Growth Amidst Constant Danger

Yemen's president Ali Abdullah Saleh flew into the Gulf of Aden on Saturday to celebrate the first exports of liquefied natural gas from a sprawling $4.5 billion plant — the biggest-ever investment in his otherwise impoverished desert country. A brass band played and politicians applauded the gas tanker as it set sail for South Korea, but Saleh's attention was elsewhere — on the attacks Saudi Arabia's military forces were waging against anti-government Shi'ite rebels in the North of Yemen. The rebels "are trying to demolish the economy," Saleh told TIME, and vowed: "We will crush them."

Iraqi MPs brand oil deals 'illegal'

A handful of lawmakers from the Iraqi parliament's oil and gas committee have questioned the legality of oil development deals signed last week with BP, ExxonMobil, and other big oil companies.

The Wall Street Journal said the opposition is not likely to derail the agreement, but it raises the spectere of fresh political uncertainty for foreign oil executives, who have just recently warmed to the idea of investing in Iraq's vast but undertapped oilfields.

Saudi switch to Argus index due to price volatility

RABIGH, Saudi Arabia (Reuters) - Saudi Aramco said on Sunday its decision to adopt the Argus Sour Crude Index (ASCI) was due to "wild" variations in the barrels traded on the U.S. Gulf Coast and those priced of West Texas Intermediate (WTI).

Angola to stash more oil cash into fund

Angola's government sees the $58 per barrel reference oil price in the 2010 budget as very prudent as prices should trade much higher next year, and will use the extra money for a wealth fund.

Well-Oiled Machinery

Slicing out costs is important in all businesses. In the oil business, reducing costs is the only sustainable competitive weapon.

One company's oil is the same as another's, as are the refinery operations and the distribution mechanisms. So how do companies improve their margins and their competitiveness? To find out, Forbes sat down with Peter Whatnell, CIO at Sunoco and president of the Society for Information Management.

China to Raise Gasoline, Diesel Prices Tomorrow, NDRC Says

(Bloomberg) -- China, the world’s second-largest energy user, will raise gasoline and diesel prices by 480 yuan a ton from tomorrow to reflect higher crude oil costs.

Saudi Aramco Is in Talks for Sinopec Refinery Stake

(Bloomberg) -- Saudi Aramco, the state oil company, said it’s in talks with China Petroleum & Chemical Corp. to take a stake in the company’s Qingdao refinery.

“We have been in discussions for the Qingdao refinery for a long time, and we continue those discussions with Sinopec,” Aramco Chief Executive Officer Khalid Al-Falih told reporters in Rabigh, near the Saudi coastal town of Jeddah today, referring to the Chinese company. “We are not about to make a decision.”

Oil producers may partner in projects like refineries to find a confirmed outlet for their crude. Importers like China are seeking energy sources to feed economic growth.

The Future Fund should be scrapped

While private entities are justified in holding financial assets to meet future liabilities, the justification does not apply to governments. They have an imputed asset in the form of their right to levy taxation, which potentially more than matches their imputed liabilities. The taxable capacity of the economy when the liabilities come due in the future depends on how well the economy manages its investments now.

The need for investment in renewable energy and especially alternatives to coal is overwhelming if Australia is to escape ''peak oil'' and global warming relatively unscathed.

Efficiency the key to car culture

Notwithstanding pressing concerns about climate change, peak oil and the consequent need to invest in more sustainable modes of transport, cars are likely to be the major transport mode in Melbourne for many years to come.

Second Law of Thermodynamics May Explain Economic Evolution

(PhysOrg.com) -- Terms such as the "invisible hand," laissez-faire policy, and free-market principles suggest that economic growth and decline in capitalist societies seem to be somehow self-regulated. Now, scientists Arto Annila of the University of Helsinki and Stanley Salthe of Binghampton University in New York show that economic activity can be regarded as an evolutionary process governed by the second law of thermodynamics. Their perspective may provide insight into some fundamental economic questions, such as the causes of economic growth and diversification, as well as why it’s so difficult to predict economic growth and decline.

Veolia Profit Declines 14% on Waste Business Slowdown

(Bloomberg) -- Veolia Environnement SA, the world’s biggest water company, said nine-month profit dropped 14 percent as the recession cut demand for waste treatment and recycling.

Metal-Air Battery Could Store 11 Times More Energy than Lithium-Ion

(PhysOrg.com) -- A spinoff company from Arizona State University plans to build a new battery with an energy density 11 times greater than that of lithium-ion batteries for just one-third the cost. With a $5.13 million research grant from the US Department of Energy awarded last week, Fluidic Energy hopes to turn its ultra-dense energy storage technology into a reality.

Solar Development in Germany Surges to Record, New Energy Says

(Bloomberg) -- Power companies will build a record amount of solar-energy capacity in Germany this year, or two- thirds more than they added in 2008, seeking to take advantage of subsidies, New Energy Finance said.

Car That Runs on Compressed Air Questioned by Critics

(PhysOrg.com) -- As electric cars begin breaking into the short-distance vehicle market, one French company thinks that it has an alternative to the electric vehicle: a car that runs on compressed air. Motor Development International (MDI), located near Nice, France, unveiled its bubbly-looking AirPod last year, and has ambitious plans to begin manufacturing the car by early 2010. But some of its critics think that's a bold claim that will be extremely difficult to realize, especially considering that the company has yet to bring a car to market despite several past attempts.

Nuclear power is safe, says Ed Miliband

Ed Miliband, the Energy Secretary, has insisted that nuclear energy is safe as he prepares to unveil a new generation of power stations.

California's recycled paper trail not so green for climate

Near Mark Oldfield's desk at the California Department of Conservation sits a ream of copy paper that is more than a routine office commodity.

Made in part from recycled fiber, it is a symbol of the state's green spirit, one ream among thousands backing the department's claim that it is a champion of the environment – and complies with state law requiring it to buy recycled paper.

There is a dark side to those sheets of bright, white paper: the part that isn't recycled comes from trees logged in the biologically rich but endangered forests of Indonesia.

UK carbon capture competition 'dead on its feet' says expert

The UK's carbon capture and storage (CCS) competition is "dead on its feet" with only one of the three projects in the running capable of delivering a full scale working demonstration plant by the 2014 deadline, a leading expert has warned.

Big Oil makes case for carbon-capture subsidies

Canada's oil sands companies say they must adopt expensive carbon-capture-and-storage technology to meet environmental challenges, but will require major government subsidies to do so for at least the next decade.

While carbon-capture-and-storage (CCS) will be expensive, the industry defends it as being competitive with wind power and biofuels in terms of the cost per tonne for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Why should Ontario pony up for Alberta's exploits?

It's funny how the oilsands is a Canadian problem when it comes to emissions, but an Albertan birthright when it comes to talk about the wealth it creates. "There won't be another wealth transfer to Ottawa under my watch, I can tell you that," said Alberta Premier Ed Stelmach, defiantly responding last week to the mere conclusion that meeting Canada's greenhouse-gas reduction targets might slightly slow down the province's record GDP growth over the next 10 years.

With that kind of talk, is it a surprise that Ontario doesn't want to board the oilpatch's carbon-capture train? Ontario shouldn't have to cover this cost any more than Alberta, to be fair, should have to cover the cost of subsidizing our desire to build new nuclear reactors and overhaul old ones.

FACTBOX - How scientists are trying solve the carbon riddle

REUTERS - For decades, scientists have been measuring carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases to gauge annual increases as well as to better understand how mankind is changing the world's atmosphere.

But scientists have struggled to build an accurate picture of how the gas is continuously shifted around by the atmosphere or precisely how much is soaked up by oceans and plants or emitted by rotting and burning vegetation and other natural processes.

Clinton Connects Overpopulation to Climate Change

Recent comments made by Clinton reflect the mindset of the neo-Malthusian scientists currently occupying key positions in the Obama administration.

There is a site giving an award for best science blog that is accepting nominations. It might be helpful if readers nominated The Oil Drum.

The award last year was to a climate-related site (What's Up With That) and most of the nominations this year seem to be climate related. But it seems like peak oil is an important topic that should be considered in these awards.

Please don't re-nominate, just click the little green + button on this comment:


This shows that we can read instructions, unlike WUWT posters.

well, depending on how smart the vote-counting system is, as for tracking voters IP adress, you may be right or wrong.

I just gave TOD 3 votes (3 separate recommendations) - whereas the WUWT-voters will be able to singlehandedly submit dozens of votes. Thinking of it, that award com that voting-system can't be too prestigious - IMHO

That is worse than a beauty contest. It is determined solely by the supporters of a given site stuffing the ballot box. Since "Best" does not mean best in any sense - the "science" at WUWT is god-awful - and really means most popular, why bother?


270,000 to 2.25 million b/day in 7 years
Exxon-Mobil promises in bid for Iraq's West Qurna Field

I suspect that the field will be developed for maximum peak output and not for maximum recoverable reserves.

As I understand it, after costs are recovered, Exxon-Mobil will get $1.90/barrel for re-developing the field.


BP & CNPC (Chinese National Petroleum) also won rights to develop the Rumaya field.

This will almost certainly be post-Peak Oil and will take some pressure off world supplies until this field also into decline. Assuming no continued insurgency.

I also understand that the Iraqi Parliament still needs to ratify this contract

Best Hopes,


Perhaps GWB and Cheney knew oil

Perhaps GWB and Cheney knew oil

In the days of yore I don't doubt that many a top dog got to the top without really knowing what is going on, but the world was a simpler place back then.

So far as I know it's been a long time since a messenger was actually shot here in the states for bringing bad news although many have undoubtedly been ejected from the inner circle for doing so.

I am convinced from spending a lifetime observing politics that while unwelcome information may be ignored or dismissed out of hand it does find it way to the top. even if only under the guise of "Knowing what the enemy is up to".

I know several real estate investors well who have done very well over the years by following one simple rule-buy and hold, they ain't making any more land.

Recall the recent remarks(over the last three days) of Rockman and West texas in regard to what the people in the business actually think and do.

It is past me to think that anyone who has fought his way to the top of an industry-such as Cheney-would not have a good grasp of the fundamentals.Even someone as dumb as Bush can probably remember sitting on his grandfather's knee and being told about the good old days when a broken down to bacco spitting wild catter could hope to hit his own gusher.Locally.

Personally I doubt that more than ten percent of preachers who make it to the big time believe in thier own sermons.

Actions speak louder than words.

There can be unwritten and unmentioned agreements among politicians and big businessmen-not a conspiracy perhaps but something akin to a conspiracy.

I submit the obvious-there has been such an agreement among tptb here in this country for quite some time,which is why we are at "war" in the ME.

People always have and alway will turn a blind eye toward unpleasant facts that threaten the status quo, but the people at the very top are also usually doing something to make sure they STAY at the top.

Getting to the top is generally a generations long process in any established and mature industry.It is niave to think that a family that has succeeded in the way the Bushes have succeeded would not have a coherent view of the big picture, or that they would not fight just as hard to stay on top as they fought to get there.

What's a little war here an there among friends and acquaintances?Teddy Kennedy's seat and family fortune was just as dependent on cheap oil as everybody elses from the far left to the far right, from the bottom to the top.

Didn't O bama just recently send another fifteen thousand troops ?

Lets try not to overlook the obvious-Bill and Hillary, Barack and Michelle, the Bushes, the McCains,are all in the same business.Sure they squabble mightily among themselves-when they can afford to.When the chips are down , they have no trouble getting together and dispatching the guys with guns to look after thier interests, and by extension, the interests of those who help them stay in office.

I can even make a good case that doing so is in the short term interest of this country, and maybe humanity, as a whole.

Unfortunately the long run is a very different matter-we have the tiger by his tail but we have no idea how to turn him loose.

Don't be under any illusions - Bill and Hillary, Barack and Michelle, the Bushes, and the McCains are all just the public front men and women. There are rich and powerful people behind them who stay out of public view. Politics is pretty much of a puppet show.


I see things about the same way-but the politicians can and often do get the bit in thier teeeth and run away.

Sometimes they are even able and willing to turn on thier masters, or to play several masters off one against another and accomplish something-and once in a while that something might even be a positive change.

But I'm not holding my breath.


These are interesting thoughts, though painful in the extreme to think about the actual persons killed, wounded and traumatized (all around) by the violence of weapons, bombs, violations, and assaults.

re: "I can even make a good case that doing so is in the short term interest of this country, and maybe humanity, as a whole."

There's a kind of logic to thinking about "peak" that has, as a possibility, the idea of control-by-force. It's almost as though, if one *can* see the big picture, it's a somewhat normal - (or normalized; i.e., logical) - to want to control the big picture. Hence, the idea of catching the "tiger's tail."

One place I differ is in the short v. long term idea. If one sees this as the only viable option, it's a trap. (Just as you say.)

There is no difference between "short" and "long" term, because the ends were used to justify the (supposedly "short-term") means in the first place.

The thinking that can see no other option cannot escape continuing it. (Well, I suppose I should make this into a question.)

Can the way of thinking that sees this as the only option possibly escape a continuation of the same?

How can actors inflict this much pain and suffering, only to say "OK, now that we are the police, we will be ethical and moral police?" Or, "We will use our access to oil in the most wise way - for sustainability?"

Or, even "We will control it all, for ourselves, yes - but for the greater good, lest those worse than us get it first?"

re: "We". I wonder...perhaps I can make the argument there is no "we," especially as people who know (as you describe) do not make it a priority to share their knowledge with others.

Then, there are...to add to your thoughts...different ways of dividing the "we."

Sometimes I think about the studies that show the number of sexual assaults of women serving in the US military by their fellow male colleagues; think about the sexual assaults that occur (always) during invasions, wars and occupations, and that these occur in a context where the "background" of domination - (lack of women's rights, lack of safety) - is already high. It's almost like an invisible form of control, in a way. (Not that this is conscious, necessarily.) And then, into this background comes the added violence, directed toward one simply because of one's femaleness (and/or youth). To me, this is a factor that is real for the people affected.

So, it's a different way to look at things, perhaps. It's completely invisible, to those who think in terms of "strategies," such as troop levels, or, insurgency/counter-insurgency - and the technology (advanced and less advanced) of warfare/invasion/control. But not at all in the background for the victims, whose victimization disappears in the face of the material gain.

However, the victimization remains in the form of the trauma and the resulting lack of ability to nurture, mature and otherwise think or feel our way out of this.

Perhaps GWB and Cheney knew oil

And Peter Wells, too...

Per my eyeball, West Qurna has 600,000 to 700,000 b/day @ peak on that chart. Exxon-Mobil promises 2.25 million b/day, but they did not say for how long.

Maximize peak production, not ultimate recovery, is the likely answer.


Looks like the US won't have a peak oil problem.
Cheney was the Secretary of Defense during the First Gulf War. He was absolutely aware of Peak Oil back then.
The sanctions put on Iraq to limit the amount of oil they pumped until they handed over their figments of mass destruction were to save the oil in the ground for the US.
All through the 1990s the US didn't press Saddam to come clean. Why Not?
The time came in the early 2000s to go get the oil and 911(I won't mention the very suspicious circumstances) provided a half butt excuse to send in the troops.
The open bidding on the oil fields is BullSh#t and when it comes down to it America will confiscate the oil it needs.
If that chart is correct there is a bunch of oil underneath the cradle of civilization.

Don't you guys think that Peter Wells chart above extends peak oil?

Iraq extend Peak Oil ?

Perhaps, with a dip in 2009/2010/? 2011 until they start to come on-line and extend the plateau. More likely, a less steep downslope.


What if the intent of the US is not to share?
After all the troops aren't over there to "Spread Democracy".

I think they thought that the oil would be already online right now. Instead, it's going to come to market as much as 10 years too late.

The oil under Iraq is why I think Bush always thought he'd be vindicated and why he kept sending in more troops. He figured that the whole point was to get the oil and withdrawing prematurely would truly have meant the entire adventure was a waste of money and lives.

I completely agree with your assessment.
What I am getting at is that The US is not going to let anyone else have any of that oil.
Do you think that a combination of improved efficiency, conservation measures and the feed in of Iraq oil will provide the means for an orderly and relatively painless transition for the US over say 20 years?
The rest of the world can fend for themselves as has always been the case.
If you have an unchallenged Empire you don't compromise.

The US has been basically stealing and exploiting since world war II why stop now?

270,000 to 2.25 million b/day in 7 years
Exxon-Mobil promises in bid for Iraq's West Qurna Field

I suspect that the field will be developed for maximum peak output and not for maximum recoverable reserves.

As I understand it, after costs are recovered, Exxon-Mobil will get $1.90/barrel for re-developing the field.

It's highly likely that the world economy will have completely collapsed by then which will shelve, perhaps for a very long time, all such projects.


Plowing Detroit Into Farmland

Today’s idea: Detroit’s “massive failure” makes possible a radical transformation of the blighted city, an article says, including shrinking it down to its urban core and turning much of the place over to crops. And an ineffective government is actually a plus.

F. Costantini for The New York Times

Could Detroit pull a reverse Joni Mitchell — unpave its parking lots to put up a metro-agrarian paradise? That’s a glib yet hopeful way to think about the urban experiments envisioned or under way in the city, as described by Aaron M. Renn in an article in New Geography.

Renn says the sheer size of Detroit — a largely vacant urban prairie bigger than Manhattan, Boston and San Francisco combined — makes it a prime test case for the “shrinking cities” movement. And so an American Institute of Architects study imagines Detroit reduced into a metro core surrounded by green belts, “urban villages” and banked land.

Edited to remove excessive quoting.

Please don't post entire articles.

If you are new here, you may wish to review our commenting guidelines here.

There are some amazing photos at the link the above blog post points to.

But I wonder if peak oil might end up reversing the depopulation of the rust belt. As energy gets scarcer, the flight to suburbia might reverse. And the old manufacturing centers might revive.


That's good thought. Detroit might even un-incorporate some bits and resolve to smaller towns and villages around an urban core. The housing stock standing in vacant lots in the photo is not all that different from the density around colonial Boston, where houses, workshops, gardens and market gardens were all together.

Have you seen the Detroit city council in action? If you can find a scintilla of "progressiveness" within that august body please let us know.

There's a diagram suggesting something like that:

Opportunity area =>> Kibbutz . I'd reckon many people would grab such an opportunity in todays US, given the unraveling of BAU ,seen from more and more peoples POV. A serious Stim_Package facilitating a rethinking of suburban Detroit would be among them smarter ones... Beg in some Amish to help quick start the whole thing .... viola. Also it would be a great Test_of_Concept for things to come for the greater good of the US....

As energy gets scarcer, the flight to suburbia might reverse. And the old manufacturing centers might revive.

Places that have water for bulk transport, water for drinking and unused area for wind turbines look to be winners.

If things REALLY go bad tech wise - if they represent a food-shed (aka what did the port ship years ago? Grain?) all the better.

So where did all the houses that used to be there go? May I venture a guess that most of them burned down? If so, then why so many house fires? Arson, perhaps?

A quick Google search lends strong evidence to this hypothesis. One article I found reports that 50% of the fires in Wayne county are believed to be arson. Several articles reported on the annual "Devil's Night" pre-halloween arson spree.

I get the impression that arson has turned out to be a very convenient solution for property owners stuck with nearly worthless, unsellable property. Maybe it has even benefited Detroit as a whole in the long run, as this article suggests. Of course, those paying higher insurance premiums in the rest of the state are the ones ultimately paying for it.

I'm in Detroit for the reasons cited. Anyone interested in getting involved here, e-mail me.


I noticed this article in Platts this morning:

ERCOT panels approve changes that will affect wind generators

Wind generators in the Electric Reliability Council of Texas are facing changes that will better align them with conventional generators in the region and aim to improve market reliability.

At a meeting of the grid operator's technical advisory committee, held Thursday, members approved a protocol revision that would require all wind generators with signed interconnection agreements after January 1 to provide primary frequency response -- equipment used to automatically respond to frequency changes -- similar to that of conventional generators. . .

Another measure TAC approved Thursday seeks to require all wind generators, including existing resources, to meet certain voltage support requirements.

Could someone explain this a bit? How expensive are such changes? Is this an issue outside Texas as well? How important is this issue, if one is ramping up wind?

As explained to me by the then Chairman of ERCOT# a couple of decades ago (I was doing a graduate paper on the effects of a small pumped storage unit on the Texas grid), ERCOT is unique in that it will vary frequency slightly before dropping voltage when the grid is stressed. ERCOT's tight transmission system allows this, while the East & West North American grids do not.

Retrofitting older WTs for slightly variable frequency operation might be difficult, but not likely for new WTs. Overall, the current generation of WTs are much more sophisticated electrically than those of a few years ago.

All WTs generate at low voltage (600 V used to be common) and the power is transformed up to line voltage. Voltage support at the line is a relatively small issue for new installations and, I suspect for most older installations.

ERCOT is planning new transmission lines into non-ERCOT Texas that will be devoted to gathering windpower exclusively. They could have gone HV DC if they perceived any significant problems but they did not.

A WT only local grid could operate at any voltage and Hz it wanted to *IF* it feeds into a DC line, which is later converted back into AC at the other end.

Best Hopes for MUCH more wind power,'


# His "day job" was manager of the LCRA/Austin Fayette coal powered plant which is run by LCRA and LCRA owns most of the hydro in Texas.

Some interesting bits in this article:

Broader Measure of U.S. Unemployment Stands at 17.5%

The new benchmark is a sign of just how much damage financial crises tend to inflict. A recent book by Carmen M. Reinhart and Kenneth S. Rogoff, two economists, found that over the last century the typical crisis had caused the jobless rate in the country where it occurred to rise for almost five years. By that standard, the jobless rate here would continue rising for two more years, through the end of 2011.

The article also points out that unemployment has affected an unusually narrow band of people this time around. The layoff rate is actually very moderate, considering the severity of the recession. What's killing people is that employers aren't hiring new workers.

(I would guess this is because companies have become more aware of the cost training workers, and are now making more of an effort to keep people on the payroll in anticipation of a rebound.)

The article also points out that people who have managed to keep their jobs are doing pretty well. While some have had their hours or wages cut, most have seen increases. And prices have fallen, meaning that the average worker has gotten an inflation-adjusted raise over the past year.

Leanan, please.

Average wages are going up. Wages are not going up.

If you fire the CEO and the Mailboy, average wages stay the same. If you fire two mail boys, average wages go up. Last I check, the people at the top are not getting laid off.

These numbers are just MSM MSM. More Suspicious Math.

From the article:

Second, wages have continued to rise for most people who still have jobs. The average hourly wage for rank-and-file workers, who make up about four-fifths of the work force, actually accelerated in October, according to the new report.

The CEO doesn't get paid hourly wages.

Some of this might be "baked in." Union workers tend to sign multi-year contracts, for example. The employer might have agreed to, say, 3% a year for four years, just before the bottom fell out of the economy.

I also wonder if layoffs might yet accelerate. All the talk of "green shoots" probably has companies trying to hold on to their workers, in case of a fast rebound. If it becomes clear that's not going to happen, employers may have no choice - they'll have to lay off workers.

You can add 1500 more today from Electronic Arts.

Back to the topic, I don't know anyone who has gotten a raise. Everyone at Hewlett Packard took a 5% haircut. All CA state employees at least 10% haircuts.

But enough of the anecdotal information, these numbers show wages and salaries have decline in 3 of the last 5 months, and overall they are down. Since last month's number was negative, the only way the numbers could have "Accelerated in October" would have been if they got even more negative. At minimum, that last sentence needs a different verb.


Also of note on the chart is that Saving is no longer in vogue.

I think those numbers are for everyone - including the unemployed. The article is talking about those who have not lost their jobs.

The idea that unemployment will continue rising for a while ties in with this chart from Calculated Risk:

 trajectory back to before-recession employment

The 2001 recession lead to a "jobless recovery" - the brown line. The same technological forces are in place.

Nevertheless I'm still standing by my prediction last year that unemployment will peak under 30%. For now, anyway ;-)

A little old but never the less a accurate take on the outrageous condition of America.
Absolutely no progress will be made without removing the criminal psychopaths in Washington and Wall Street.


Hurricane Ida is now a Category 1 and seems to be headed more in the direction of Tallahassee than New Orleans. I am sure there are interesting things readers are running into about the storm. Comments about it can perhaps be made in this thread.

From wjtv.com

Gail, if current predictions are correct Ida will make landfall on or near the Alabama coast. That is very close to where I am, Pensacola. We had Ivan in 04 and Dennis in 05. Ivan tore everything up and Dennis, a cat 3, or 2 when it hit, did a lot less damage. Ida has just been downgraded to a tropical storm with 70 mph winds so we are not getting excited at all.

Ron P.

I doubt that I will move my car a half block away to a safer parking space (a few inches higher, no overhanging trees). Does not seem to be worth the trouble.

AFAIK, minimal evacuations from off-shore platforms.

Best Hopes :-)


From the NY Times Op-Ed pages, by Ross Douthat
After the End of History

For most of the last century, the West faced real enemies: totalitarian, aggressive, armed to the teeth. Between 1918 and 1989, it was possible to believe that liberal democracy was a parenthesis in history, destined to be undone by revolution, ground under by jackboots, or burned like chaff in the fire of the atom bomb.

Twenty years ago today, this threat disappeared.
On the left, there’s an enduring fascination with the pseudo-Marxist vision of global capitalism as an enormous Ponzi scheme, destined to be undone by peak oil, climate change, or the next financial bubble.

Meanwhile, our domestic politics are shot through with antitotalitarian obsessions, even as real totalitarianism recedes in history’s rear-view mirror. Plenty of liberals were convinced that a vote for George W. Bush was a vote for theocracy or fascism. Too many conservatives are persuaded that Barack Obama’s liberalism is a step removed from Leninism.

These paranoias suggest a civilization that’s afraid to reckon with its own apparent permanence. Maybe we miss living with the possibility of real defeat. Maybe we sense, as we hunt for the next great existential threat, that even the end of history needs to have an end.

Well that seems to describe many (most?) of TheOilDrum commenters and article posters. Are we at the end of history, in the sense that the war between "-isms" is largely over, and the democratic capitalist model will reign forever?

Dick Lawrence

Not surprisingly, I see it as evidence of the opposite. Tainter points out that ideological strife increases as collapse approaches. What he calls "scanning behavior" emerges - people looking for solutions, and willing to consider ever more radical ideas.

Exactly! Brotherly love and empathy for all people is something that goes with peace and prosperity. When things get bad old feuds and prejudices come to the surface. Witness Rwanda in 1994. The Tutsi and the Hutu had loved in peace for generations. But once the war broke out they turned on each other and slaughtered whole families, even the babies.

Desperate people do desperate things. No one will be safe when things get really, really bad. Check out what Robert Kaplan thought was coming when he wrote this way back in 1994.
THE COMING ANARCHY by Robert D. Kaplan
How scarcity, crime, overpopulation, tribalism, and disease are rapidly destroying the social fabric of our planet

The cities of West Africa at night are some of the unsafest places in the world. Streets are unlit; the police often lack gasoline for their vehicles; armed burglars, carjackers, and muggers proliferate. "The government in Sierra Leone has no writ after dark," says a foreign resident, shrugging. When I was in the capital, Freetown, last September, eight men armed with AK-47s broke into the house of an American man. They tied him up and stole everything of value.

And Kaplan was not even aware of Peak Oil. The whole world will soon be like West Africa is today. And the sad part is things will only get worse from there.


I hope you wouldn't talk about the Holocaust this way: Christians and Jews had lived in peace for generations but when the war broke out they turned on each other. How does that sound?

It's not surprising coming from someone with a handle like yours. It's bad enough when you people pretend that notions of natural history gives one some kind of authority to pontificate on unrelated topics but you're being plain insensitive on this one.

HFat, your post is strange to say the least. I don't recall the Jews turning against anyone during that war so your take on history it totally wrong. And the world did not turn against the Jews, only Hitler and his henchmen.

What is wrong with my handle? I take from your statement that you are a creationist. That says a lot about your assessment of the world's six thousand year history. ;-) At any rate I would pit my assessment of history up against that of any creationist.

That being said how is my post insensitive? Was Kaplan's article in The Atlantic Monthly insensitive? I think people who protest historical facts and cry even louder when someone suggests that people will act in the future pretty much like they acted in the past, are at best deep into denial about the truth of human nature, and at worse just plain.... (Better not say it because it is not nice.)

Ron Patterson, Darwinian

Ron - as per my posts on religion yesterday, you have just summed it up nicely again! Why do you assume he is a creationist just because he mentions your handle? Also, just because he might be a creationist does not by itself mean that he believes the world is only six thousand years old! There are people who believe the world was 'created' but also that it is billions of years old.

See what I mean about polarized opinions on religion in the US? Don't propagate the stereotype, it doesn't do you or your fellow countrymen any favours. Just some friendly advice...

HAcland, one is either a Darwinian (evolutionist) or a Creationist. All other theories, like intelligent design or whatever, are just other names for creationism. Anyone who protests that my handle "Darwinian" gives a bias to my thinking must not be a Darwinian! What other conclusion could one possibly draw?

And the six thousand year thing was a joke, that's why I put a smiley face after the statement. I fully realize that there are some old earth creationists. Unlike too many people on this list I try to be obvious when I am joking because I realize sarcasm is lost on some people. Too often it is lost on me. ;-)

And it is not I who is attempting to propagate a stereotype, it is he who protest that my being a Darwinian clouds my thinking. And this does not have a damn thing to do with my countrymen. How in heaven's name could you possibly draw that conclusion, as if my countrymen all agreed with me.

Methinks the gentleman doth protest too much. Just some friendly advice...

Ron P.

HAcland, one is either a Darwinian (evolutionist) or a Creationist. All other theories, like intelligent design or whatever, are just other names for creationism. Anyone who protests that my handle "Darwinian" gives a bias to my thinking must not be a Darwinian! What other conclusion could one possibly draw?

Nonsense, my good chap! Utter nonsense!

And once again a gold-plated example of the way the US stereotype thinks - that one has to either be one or the other. Here in Europe we don't tend to polarize so much (he says, snobbily!). It is perfectly possible to believe that there is a Creator, to assign that Creator the moniker 'God', to take to heart His/Her/its Scriptures (from whichever book), attend Church/Mosque/Temple and yet still be a subscriber to Mr Darwin's Theory of the Origin of The Species.

Why must Americans complicate things so much? ;)

It is perfectly possible to believe that there is a Creator, to assign that Creator the moniker 'God', to take to heart His/Her/its Scriptures (from whichever book), attend Church/Mosque/Temple and yet still be a subscriber to Mr Darwin's Theory of the Origin of The Species.

Of course you are correct. I completely forgot a startling lesion I learned many years ago, that some people can believe in two contradictory concepts at the same time. Some people can believe in the Adam and Eve story and believe in evolution at the same time! I cannot, to this day, explain it but I observed it as a fact.

On the other hand we have lots people here in the US of A who go to church, give lip service to everything written in the scriptures, including the Adam and Eve story, the Flood story, etc, then go home and forget all about it, believing in evolution instead.

We call them hypocrites.

But I am deeply sorry that HFat's post got us off on this tangent. The subject is how people will behave when things get really bad post peak. I say they will behave much as they have behaved during such times in the past. They will be food riots. They are actually food riots happening almost every week in some parts of the world, just Google it and see. Anyway that is the point of contention here, not evolution or religion.

Ron P.

Some people can believe in the Adam and Eve story and believe in evolution at the same time!

indeed. but then it does depend upon whether that person believes that the Bible can be both allegorical in nature and yet also historically accurate in parts. The good ol' C.of.E that I was brought up in affords one the luxury of this approach! Perhaps not in some of the more literalist Christian communities in the US.

A while back there was a report on the evening BBC news of a pastor somewhere in the Bible Belt who had (miraculously!) raised a staggering $25 million and was building a musuem, the prime purpose of which was to juxtaposition plastic models of T-Rexes and diplodocuses with the Bethlehem nativity scene. He was interviewed and made it known that he believed that, whilst the palaeontologists' dino-bones were genuine, they must have belonged to bodies which were contemporaries of Christ. Now for my Anglican Protestant upbringing that was stretching the bounds of plausibility a touch too far! To his credit, he was very sincere and kept a straight face throughout the interview.

indeed. but then it does depend upon whether that person believes that the Bible can be both allegorical in nature and yet also historically accurate in parts.

Yes, yes, again my good man, you are correct. The parts of the Bible that seem logical, to any particular denomination, are true. Parts that are simply too absurd to be believed, are allegorical. And what parts are true and what parts are allegorical depend entirely on what particular denomination you prescribe to. Reminds of Walter Kaufmann's observation:

Doing theology is like doing a jigsaw puzzle in which the verses of Scripture are the pieces: the finished picture is prescribed by each denomination, with a certain latitude allowed. What makes the game so pointless is that you do not have to use all the pieces, and that pieces which do not fit may be reshaped after pronouncing the words "this means."

Walter Kaufmann:
Critique of Religion and Philosophy.

Ron P.

And what parts are true and what parts are allegorical depend entirely on what particular denomination you prescribe to.

Kinda - but most books of the Bible fall neatly into one or t'other category.

The Pentateuch contain a lot of allegorical narrative, but also historical figures, the most prominent of which are Abraham and Moses. Non-religious texts of the time also reference these two men, and indeed Abraham is the second most reverred prophet in Islam (Christ being the third most). The rest of the Old Testament is mostly historical, with the Books of the Kings being entirely so, and providing us with the most complete history of that part of the world and ancient history. Many non-religious academics have had good reason to draw on these books to put their own research in context. Then there are the books of 'prophecies, worship and wisdom' which lead into the New Testament, most of which (particularly Proverbs) can be best thought of as 'self help' books of the time. These are instructional books which sometimes rely on historical narrative to get the point across - such as Job - there was such a man, and by all accounts he really did have a pretty crap time (until he was saved!).

Then there is the New Testament which is a different kettle of tuna, and I have to go worship at the altar of consumptive excess (the supermarket!) before it closes for the evening, so i will leave this brief tour of the Bible for another day.


The Pentateuch contain a lot of allegorical narrative, but also historical figures, the most prominent of which are Abraham and Moses. Non-religious texts of the time also reference these two men...

This is getting really funny. There are no non-religious texts of this time. There are not even any religious texts of this time. In 1600 BC, when Moses allegedly lived and who some accredit with writing Genesis, there wasn't even written language in existence except Egyptian hieroglyphics.

There are some Egyptian hieroglyphics, written well after the time of Moses, that some claim refers to Moses but this is disputed by most Egyptologists . Nothing anywhere refers to Abraham. There are not even any Jewish texts that were written in the days of Abraham or Moses.

Most biblical schlors believe Genesus was written somewhere between 10th and 5th century B.C., at least 600 years after Moses was supposed to have lived.

Curious, do you actually believe there were non-religious texts that mentions Abraham and Moses written in the days they were supposed to have lived? Or, did you just make that up?

While it is widely admitted that there is no archaeological evidence to prove the existence of Abraham, apparent parallels to Genesis in the archaeological record assure that speculations on the patriarch's historicity and on the period that would best fit the account in Genesis remain alive in religious circles.
Abraham from Wikipedia

Ron P.

My mistake, I shouldn't have said 'of the time' as it incorrectly reads as though I mean texts from 1700bc and you are quite correct, there isn't anything other than Egypt hyros. I meant there are texts from Roman biblical times which reference Abram and Moses written at the time the bible was compiled. However there is plenty of achaelogical ancdotal evidence to give credence to the bible's narrative that he lived around the early second millenium BC (but with some confusion between how much time separates them). If I have time tomorrow I will jot down some of my notes on this subject.

Edit: sorry, done it again! I mean A only in second mil bc. Moses later...

Ron says this:
"The subject is how people will behave when things get really bad post peak. I say they will behave much as they have behaved during such times in the past. They will be food riots. They are actually food riots happening almost every week in some parts of the world, just Google it and see. Anyway that is the point of contention here, not evolution or religion."


My experiences as I recall from back when things were tough.

Born in 1938 in the country.Not in a hospital either. Still some of the Depression lingered.Hobos come to the farm from the railroad nearby as it stopped to take on water down the bluffs. They were basically good men, just 'on the bum'. Never begged. Just asked for a drink of water and perhaps a few kitchen matches. They would stand by the gravel road and wait for someone to ask them over. We never ever worried about them doing evil.

Then WWII came and most all the men disappeared. We worked somewhat harder. Milked 12 cows morning and evening. Helped neighbors. Never any violence back then to speak of. Your neighbors were there to help in times of need and they did.

Suddenly me and my brother were transported to the city. Big city. St. Louis. This was bad. Very bad as our mother spent her time in taverns and with other men. Me and my brother begged for handouts. Stole at the corner store. Stood in others doorways and watched them eat until they handed us a scrap.

My brother was sitting on a curb with another child and a car came by, snagging the other kid and drug him down the street. He was dead. My younger brother suffered with that image. Later our mother (he says) pushed him out a second store window onto concrete. He carried a hole in the middle of his tongue the rest of his life. She also shoved him into a hot stove and other acts. We burned the living room couch down in revenge. We stole her boy friends money as they were in bed.

This was evil times in the city.

Thank God before long we got back to the country and lived as we had before. I survived these ordeals but my brother did not do well. Never could deal with women. Had some bad mental problems but became a millioinaire yet lost it all in a few weeks day trading. He died some years back after three years of extreme cancer. I am quite healthy and loved many women and still do.

The country life was without automobiles. We had plenty to eat and hard work to make us strong physically.

So my point. Yes life in the cities from my experience during 'hard times' will be evil and violent.
I am hoping that living only a few miles from that farm of my grandparents who raised us til we were about 13 yrs old was a very good life. I have profited greatly from that upbringing. I still know of some oldtimers who recall all this exactly as I do. A very few and disappearing slowly.

So I believe in the agrarian lifestyle and having neighbors who are there working alongside you.
I have footprints all over this county. I will die here finally. My grave is paid for and right at the foot of my GGGrandfathers grave where I chose it.

Life will be very bad in the future but I think that later we will return to what was once workable and how I remember life then. I see no other way.

There is a vast chasm between life in the cities and suburbs and the real life that I lived back in those olden days and the life here just a few miles down the road that I live today. Today that divide between cultures still exists to a large degree.

There are quite a few here on TOD who know this and comment on it as to the agrarian and country life. Believe me. It was the best of times during the worst of times. Except for the city folken.

Or at least that's how I recall it.



I came into the world about 13 years after you, and lived most of my childhood in small towns rather than either country or city, so my memories are different than yours, but not that different. Small town life typically lags behind the faster pace of the cities, so my childhood experience in the '50s and early '60s probably was not all that different from your experience of rural life in the two decades prior to that. As a kid, by the time I was in 1st grade I was pretty much free to walk to wherever I wanted to around town after school - to friends, to the park, to the library, downtown. All the kids were pretty much footloose and fancy free. And all of us living in town did WALK, even to kindergarten (although usually one of the moms would escort us as a small group) - at least until we were old enough for a bike, then we took that. The bikes also extended our wandering range quite a ways into the countryside. The thing today of everyone afraid to let kids out of their sight, and having them chauffeured everywhere, seems like a total foreign world. It wasn't like that when I was a kid, nor for you either.

I was aware of some pretty poor people living in our town - many had kids who were classmates, you just found out about this stuff. They were not starving, but their clothing and houses were usually pretty shabby. There really were not any truly rich people living in my small towns, though of course there were a fair number of people better off than my family. People pretty much just got along with each other, as best as I could tell.

Those were some of the best economic times our country ever had or ever will have, so I'm not so sure there are any relevant lessons to be drawn wrt the question that started this thread. I suspect, though, that as things get bad, small town people will be more likely than not to pull together and try to take care of themselves and their neighbors as best as they can. I am not nearly so confident that the same dynamic will be at work in the anonymous cities.

WNC --

We appear to be the same age. My childhood in a newly-built 1950s suburb was pretty much the same as yours. Not too many places to walk to, except friend's houses. I biked to the store, to the barber, to other places. Schools were far enough away, though, that we had to ride the bus.

I'm now living in a small town not too far from where I grew up. You may be pleased to find out it's not much different. I know my neighbors, my kids can walk or bike to the convenience store, we let them wander without chauffering. I can leave the garage door open all day and nothing gets stolen.

I hope when things go bad all my neighbors will pull together. I fear, though, that the rabble-rousing in the political arena over the last 40 years has made us all suspicious of each other, ready to blame, and ready to pull a trigger.

- waterplanner

Airdale, I am the exact same age as you, born in 1938. I was born in a sharecroppers shack, not in any hospital either.

I do hope things get no better than they did during the Great Depression, but in my opinion this is just dreaming... and hoping for the best. The fact is that the world today is nothing like it was in those days. First the population of the world has tripled since you and I were born. We no longer have an agrarian economy as we did back then. Also unemployment got no higher than 25 percent. Though most people still lived on the farm, there was still a reverse migration back to the farm.

Today there are very few small farmers. Most people live in cities. Unemployment will start to rise well above 25 percent and everything will snowball from there. People, city people, will become desperate. It will be total collapse and absolutely nothing compared to the Great Depression.

During the collapse of Easter Island, people turned to cannibalism. There are other examples of Cannibalism:
During the 1930s, multiple acts of cannibalism were reported from Ukraine and Russia's Volga, South Siberian and Kuban regions during the Holodomor.
Cannibalism was proven to have occurred in China during the Great Leap Forward, when rural China was hit hard by drought and famine.
Cannibalism Wikipedia

Desperately hungry people do desperate things. Here is the bottom line: If things do not get desperately bad, as I have predicted, then this means that the situation, the economy, is not desperately bad either. But if the situation does get desperately bad, much worse than during the Great Depression, then everything will break down and it will be like hell on earth.

Hey, we are talking about the die-off of over four billion people. There is no way that this will happen painlessly, without a total collapse of society. The Great Depression was NOT the end of the world as we know it. This will be.

But we can hope.

Ron P.

Understand Ron and being the same age we think a lot alike I find.

However my point was that AFTER the chaos and we(some) are left with the remains and a sadly depleted and wasted land...THAT surely another lifestyle and culture will arise and hopefully it will be sustainable and modeled much like what I described as my early life...which I might add having no autos, no tractors, no electricity that we lived a very good life and didn't really miss all that came later.

My grandmother who I learned to cook by watching loved to cook and see her children eat well. This was her very life's goal and I never never once heard her complain. She lived a very simple fulfilling life as I saw it and she dealt with me and my brother and still two younguns out of the 14 she birthed still living on the farm and not gone off to war or elsewhere.

She would cook a huge breakfast on the wood burning cook stove, the men would be gone doing chores then come in an eat, she would 'wait' on them or sometimes eat with them,,the children not having to do hard work in the fields ate last, what was left and she always had stuff leftover.

Then she would start dinner. At odd times she would come out to her rocker undert the maple shade tree and put a dipper of snuff in her mouth and sit there rocking in her sun bonnet and apron. Content and satisfied with the world around her. She never fired up that wood stove after dinner for she fixed enough that we ate the cold leftovers from dinner. Just threw a sheet over the table. Food couldn't be kept very long without ice or electricity so you ate it all. Biscuits could last a few days or rolls. The rest had to be eaten.

My grandfather as a half Native American was rather close mouthed but knew everything worth knowing about hunting,fishing,farming and care of stock. He also never complained. I never once recalled them every saying a bad word to each other or complaining about each other. Neither did they make open shows of affection but you knew that their lifes were full and satisfying. The word LOVE was not in our lexicon. I see it mostly now as a Code Word...meaning like "well if you really LOVED me you would....yada yada"..a code word brought about by people who were not of the soil and worked it for a living. Town folks maybe but not us. You were fed well, taught well and learned your lessons as best you could. Lots of lazy days when it rained or the seasons of sow and harvest were over. Time to go fish or hunt or run the woods or make things or fool with the mules. Lots of time when chores were done. Sit in kitchen and watch my grandmother cook on cast iron. Watch my grandfather make a boat paddle or bullwhip or sharpen axes and split wood, or pick pecans. Clean fish and dress game.Put trot lines out in the back water.

They taught me by their actions how to be satisfied even with work to be done. Like drawing buckets of water from the cistern with nary a pulley,,just hand over hand..and always hauling in kindling and wood for her stove or the one we sat around in cold weather. Us boys did all that toting and packing and we never complained either. Washing clothes in a big kettle over an outdoor fire. The girls did their jobs and we did ours.

So a livelihood on some level must be found. This was workable back then. Surely can be after the coming events subside and the population is mostly all gone.

The land will remain and thats about it. They may have to live in a hole in the ground and slowly work up to a real farm. Slowly and raising children to help them. Haul water from a creek. Carefully hoard their seeds for next spring, put up enough to last over winter. Hogs will be the only way to preserve the meat. Beef don't work except way out west. Ashes to make lye water out of for soap and hygiene and to treat the corn so they don't get pellagra. Hog lard for cooking, to make soap, the list is endless and they had better learn fast or know how or go under right off.

The way it was as I lived it back then. I learned how to handle cattle,hogs, and mules. How to butcher hogs, raises chickens, fish and hunt as well are intensive gardening. I can remember NOT going to school when potatoes needed digging or tobacco suckering or whatever else.

A hard working life, close to nature. Close to my ancestors. Walking behind my grandfather who walking behind that mule pulling a single breaking plow....alllllll day long except for dinner. Drinking water out of a gallon jug. Watching tumblebugs roll cow or mule dung and a thousand other things a kid could do on a real honest farm. Not the Big Ag of today where 'farmers' buy their foodstuffs at WalMart and brag on being 'farmers', which with my definition,,they are most surely NOT. I only know of three guys in the county who can hitch up a mule team and drive a wagon with them.

But thinking seriously about it? I don't think 1 in a 1000 could adapt. Maybe even less. Too much knowledge and skills are gone perhaps. Gone forever. Yes then folks will murder,rape and pillage for sure. Steal and covet. Lots of blood will be spilled I guess. Many will just lay down and die without even trying. But those times above were real. All I have to do is ride down the blacktop a ways and can walk that very ground where all it happened at. The house burned way back. The big trees are all gone.The barn is gone and only a very old rusted out haybinder is laying over in the cow pasture. You can't tell that a whole lot of living happened there unless you have the memories to go by.



You know, one of the advantages that old guys like you, Ron and I have is that we have lived in what is, in essence, a different reality. As I remember Ron also grew up on a farm and I lived in the country next to a farmer. People who haven't lived as we did don't have any frame of reference as to how good a simple life can be.

This "good life" is one reason I left the chemical industry to move back to the boondocks years ago. Yes, life can be hard but it is serene (well, at least most of the time).


One of the unmentionable anthropologists wrote that cites do not create men, cities consume men, I generally think that is true, but cities do allow the emotional thinkers in any society momentary lapses of pleasure which to them is a fair trade. Skeptics and cynics ask why I am an American patriot, and the only coherant answer I can come up with is that our rural life allows a bit of culture and a bit of virtue in place of the rest of the world's "rural idiocy", and to me that makes America an outpost of human progress.

You can look at fiction as "true" in some sense, even though the characters are creations from a human mind. Adam and Eve, like all myths, is a kind of fiction that (among its many duties) presents a very stern truth, a very harsh truth, and one that is familiar to TOD readers: the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics. When Adam and Eve fall, their bodies go from 0 to 60 in 30 seconds (ha ha) I mean they become material (in the sense of matter as it is understood in our universe) and their physical selves start to obey the same laws that apply to all matter and to our own bodies today. So they have to die after that, they have to work to eat (in so doing both embodying the 2nd Law (by consuming energy) and delaying it by postponing death), they have to have kids if they want to see a furthering of the family line.

The person or people who came up with Adam and Eve needed something simple and understandable to explain this harsh law to a people who largely couldn`t read, I`m guessing. No physics texbooks, no biologists, no Scientific American issues at hand. This myth, like so many other ancient myths, fairy tales (read Bruno Bettelheim`s The Uses of Enchantment!!), folktales, etc. DOES present something true and useful.

The story of the Flood also can work on this metaphorical level....many people here at TOD have built their own "arcs" or "lifeboats" because they have basically applied knowledge of the energy crisis at hand to their daily lives. Sometimes people who try "ELP" may be given the same treatment as Noah.....largely facing incredulity and sometimes ridicule. After all, for hundreds of years with an energy surplus around, the route to success was Not-ELP (Un-ELP?) (Spend-Globalize-Consume= SGC???) ) SGC is definitely more naturally attractive for us as humans. It means luxury brands, Louis Vuitton in China, your birthday party in Tahiti with all your friends flown in, a new car every three years---what ecstasy!

But the people who wrote the Flood story must have foreseen the necessity of a situation arising where the earthlings would face something where the underlying truth went against the prevailing wisdom. And so Noah is the original Peak Oil lifeboat myth in my mind.

Aristotle might have been the first one to claim that fiction was "true" in that it allowed an audience to access truths in a special way by accessing a fictional world, a special realm that is not necessarily false or a lie. In this sense he disagreed with Plato who saw the world of art and fiction as dangerous and false because it was fiction.

Americans have a quite Platonic idea about myths and fiction IMO---that`s why there are so many battles over there about book banning, Creationism, etc. If only you switch to Aristotle in this regard your teleological problems are solved.

Try it!

Ron, I am both a creationist and evolutionist and there is NO contradiction. A simple example, God can create a finch population and puts them on some islands, then the variability of the islands will lead to natural selection of beak shapes and then when observed (by Darwin for example) the evolution can then be labelled Darwinian.

A simple example, God can create a finch population and puts them on some islands,

As a counter-example, Peter Finch created a God population when he made the movie Network and screamed the immortal phrase "I am as mad as hell, and am not going to take it anymore!".

one is either a Darwinian (evolutionist) or a Creationist.

Well, I for one see creationism as a spectrum. On one end we have the strong form: God created the earth & heavens in seven days six tousand years ago. Somewhere in the middle, we have intelligently quided evolution to create a being in his image. Then we have those who think that the fact that the laws of physics & constants & size/expansion rate of our universe are so finely tuned (minor changes would seem to make life ad we know it impossible) that some special being deliberately created it as is, in order to make life possible. The later view is not far from the Anthropic principle (we exist, so therefore that places severe constraints upon the properties of the universe), which I would consider to be the main stream scientific viewpoint.

There was some reason behind Darwin's choosing of the title "Origin of Species". Creationism, or the origin of life, is a different, though related, scientific field.

There was some reason behind Darwin's choosing of the title "Origin of Species". Creationism, or the origin of life, is a different, though related, scientific field.

That is a very good point! Do you mind if I borrow it for future such discussions!


God created the earth & heavens

A Dutch investigator published recently that this has always been translated wrong. It must be: God separated earth and heaven.

Berashith bara Elohim eth hashamayim waeth ha aretz.....Pronouncation of first verse in Genesis.
ha aretz means more or less "the land" and hashamayim "the heavens" but of course this in OUR vernacular and translations most will agree in the end or merely 'commentary'. Yet Alter(see below) does a great work by providing more and more insight into the exact meanings of those Hebrew words and text. In fact there is a newpaper in Israel titled Ha Aretz. You can read most of it online.

The Torah which is the first five books of the Hebrew bible was written(given) with no spaces, no punctation marks,and no vowels,just consonants and in one continuous stream. Or so the rabbis and many students of Hebrew studies agree. This is how it is in the Genesis(a Greek word and the real parts are given difference names of course as the first of Genesis is "Bera")scroll and in the scrolls which are meticulously maintained in each and every Synagogue. To alter it is forbidden. Each and every one is perfectly alike. I have seen and observed very very old Torah Scrolls and noted this as well. In fact one can easily pick out the hidden name of God(the tetragrammaton)in Hebrew and without too much study learn to speak Hebrew to some degree. I also admit that the language has some kind of a mystical touching aspect to it..part of the reason I love to study it.

And according to what I have studied the first verse of Genesis(Bera) can be translated at least 16 different ways, if one wishes to get right down into the matter. Which is right? Who decided? A tribe that still exists to this very day while others nation states and people ceased to be? Does one listen to those who have studied and lived with this for many many thousands of years or heed the preachings of some yahoo that just came down out of the hills and says the he "Was Called" and HE will tell you EXACTLY WHAT you must do or else burn in hell??????????? Someone who didn't even finish high school maybe? Some one who wants a job that entails only 1 hour on Sunday and 1 hour on Wednesday night? The pay is excellent. The work is minuscule and fairly worthless IMO and in fact leads huge numbers far astray. Who get his sermons perhaps from watching TV? BlowDried Televangalists who GOD will surely NOT tell regarding the coming of Armageddon? Will that be God's manner of speaking to the millions on this planet? One of those quacks? I sincerely doubt it.
I think God will speak, if he wishes to , directly to a man or woman and bypass the rest or just let the hell alone and let it roll on. Perhaps one can see this chaos coming already? Or just bad JuJu in KSA? Or lying politicians?

I would prefer a Chinese fortunate cookie myself then over that other babbling.God can find me anytimne and place. He can speak through nature, or animals or the wind and the weather or anyother choice if He is what He says He is. I will surely listen then.

Note if you will the word Elohim. This is plural meaning 'GODS' and not GOD. It took me a long long period of study to get beyond this first verse as to why it is plural. Once there the going becomes even tougher. Robert Alter holding the chair of Hebraic Studies........

"Robert Alter. Ph.D. Harvard University, 1962. Professor Alter has taught at Berkeley since 1967. He has published widely on the modern European and American ... "

and his book "The Five Books of Moses" is an excellent text on understanding those chapters and much much more. In fact he states that far more is known now of the correct translations and nuances of those books in Hebrew than ever before, even back when they were incorporated into KJV and back even to the Greek and Latin. (Septuagint and Vulgate..etc).

One will also notice many things upon close study of those texts. Such as God 'created ' man but 'fabricated' woman...two entirely different words in Hebrew. One a creative act and the other taking places after HIS creations of which the number is sacred and full of meaning.

In fact the whole of the Torah is heavily laden with hidden and hard to understand verbiage.

Like as it is written that God 'breathed into the nostrils of man'...word is Ruach..meaning breath as well as spirit. Yet there is no mention of God breathing into the nostrils of woman. One can hypothesize that the DNA was supplied by man and used to fabricate/make woman. Yet without anyone understanding the beauty of DNA they would not be able to use the meaning or term of that now know science but one can see how it could happen in such and such a manner. Yet missing or one differing chromosome in female as opposed to male.

Where modern Christians get it all wrong and go sorta stupid on the whole issue of the biblical texts and beliefs is they are rather ignorant of the whole of the bible so they wildly embrace what is more preached as regards a Physical Man such as Yeshua Ben Yosef...Jesus son of Joseph(and noting that there is NO letter J in Hebrew, nor Greek nor Latin nor in English until very late in the game. Yet we are given translations as per the priests and theologians which can easily lead one totally astray and give many ignorant and far fetched beliefs ,such as the inerrantcy of the BIBLE. When in fact there are many acknowledged errors in the modern Bible.The given genealogy of Jesus is one biggie in the New Testament.

For one the whole of the Apocryphal is missing in the English translation of the KJV simply due to the Puritans demanding it not be in the American version. Its in the Catholic and was in ALL the other translations but was removed fairly recently.

So one misguided ignorant Ahmurkhan 'Christian' is blindly stating very little of what he is really aware of and DEMANDING that it is in fact the true and innerant WORD.

Here is another startling FACT..Note this : GOD DID NOT promise eternal life. Did NOT lay it on the table. Never spoke of it and its a BIGGY yet..not there. Oh a few verses about Lazarus and so forth.

Heaven? Not a Hebrew word. Try Ghenna instead. As I recall the Sadducees did not buy into resurrection and the Pharisees did..or vice versa.

Yet when Jesus spoke mostly it was about Eternal Life Hereafter in HEAVEN!! He laid it Big Time on the table...yet God never deals with it sufficiently. As I read most Jews do NOT buy into it still.
The verses say "He rested in the bosom of Abraham"..etc....or Gathered up to his ancestors.

My belief from reading is that the Jews are given to live 'righteous' lives. Yes they can defend themselves with armies. Yes many other things. There are several varieties of Jew beliefs and types. Orthodox being the most closest to the original as I understand.

So for the person who REALLY wishs to understand what this is all about? Let him go to the original Hebrew and read anew. Not listen to some clown standing in a pulpit tell him what HE must do or HE will go to hell.

Hey its not the right of some priest or preacher to tell ME what I MUST DO to save my soul.
Its MY SOUL and he can jolly well keep his stained and dirty hands off it!!!

All those smary stupid Sunday School bible stories are trash of the worst sort..."Ahh widdle babby Moses in the bulrushes."...turns it into a resemblance of a homemade YOUTUBE video and about is useful since later in life when that Sunday School member grows up he finds 'Hey its not like they promised at all for I gave and turned my cheek and got the shit beat out of me' then he trashs the whole subject and the blame for this lies straight upon the stupidly of modern day Christanity and the ones who profit by it.

So I eschewed it and plowed my own furrows. Sowed my own seeds. Will I get a crop? No telling but I have seen and been subjected to events and happenings that I find unexplainable. I see it as the Voice of God. I submit as I feel led. I hardly ever go to my local church anymore since I simply cannot abide false doctrine and ignorant teachings.

Instead I read many texts on the Kaballah, Dead Sea Scrolls and the Nag Hammadi..for insight. For the love of it. For to learn THE TRUTH. If there is one and I do believe , at least for me, that there is a truth,,somewhere "OUT THERE".

Airdale-next lesson...Eve and the Serpent...(Hebrew does not attach any devilish attributes to the Serpent) nor any Jesus forcoming predictions to "and her seed shall boot the head of the serpent"

BTW I know much of the above is rambling somewhat. Not trying for the Memmel Award either, just what I believe and study. To each his own and as they feel led and at 71 I really wanta believe. When I was 20? I really didn't give a kaka. Age can change a person that way. Yet I think mostly God stands outside those MegaChurch house doors laughing and laughing as their prayers never even get beyond the ceiling.

PS. I am not looking for a big debate on my subject matter either. I am just saying.......
I have one really good friend who is a preacher. His life is a living hell as a result as he fights the ongoing battles of sin and evil in his own church. One of the most honest and righteous man I have ever known. He will be the executor of my estate and place my headstone as well as perhaps saying a few words about me over my grave as I check out of this worrying and dying world.He absolutely will not defile the word of God. We argue this stuff constantly when ever I chance to see him as I do with many of my friends and kinfolk as well.

Airdale, does it matter? Does it really matter what the correct translation says? All this was written by deeply superstitious Bedouin priest over 2500 years ago. Is it really important what these superstitious old men really meant?

Ron P.

"written?" I think the world's oldest Torah is about from the year 1000AD if I remember right.


You are very very wrong. The Dead Sea Scrolls are dated around the time of Roman rule of Israel.
They are on display. There are several very good texts on those who worked on the scrolls. Not just a few scrolls. Lots of scrolls. Almost all of them reaffirm what the ones now extant contain by and large.

What you may refer to as the Torah may not be what the Jews refer to it as.

We are looking thru a glass dimly when we start translating into other languages.

Yes it matters, Ron. Just not to you.

Airdale, does it matter? Does it really matter what the correct translation says?

It matters to a lot of people. And it is a way to counter fundamentalism which is ususlly based upon a literal interpretation of scripture. It shows, that there are major uncertainties about the meaning of these texts. Which even to a person who truly believes they are the word of god, that some humility in interpretaion is required.

It is also fascinating as far as trying to gain an understanding of how the prevalent belief systems came to be. That sort of knowledge should be useful even to those who believe that all these texts are the product of human imagination alone.

My mental picture of a prophet, is of a man (not too many were women) who noticed that the current understanding must be wrong, and wished for a new revelation to put humanity back on track. He probably thought deeply about what the new wisdom would be like, and dreamed of the day when the new prophet would appear. Then he dreamed of the event, and he was the star. Eventually he becomes convinced that he is the choosen Avatar. If he is charismatic enough perhaps enough of his contemporaries will become convinced as well. The rare revelations that survive probably do so because they have a certain relevance to the people of the time. So at the very least we are looking not at random dreamings, but of motivated dreamings that have survived the test of time.

If you understand why my satirical statement about Christians and Jews is ridiculous but you don't understand the problem with the original (your statement), it means you know a good bit more about what what happened in Europe 65 years ago than about what happened in Central Africa 15 years ago. That wouldn't be surprising... but why then do you feel the need to talk about it? You could have picked something less serious than genocide if you wanted to crack jokes.

I didn't call you a racist so why do you call me names?

EDIT: you don't have to be opposed to most or even some of Darwin's ideas to take a dim view of people who would call themselves "Darwinian". Who is or is not likely to take on such a moniker has more to do with the contemporary ideological climate than with Darwin.

but why then do you feel the need to talk about it? You could have picked something less serious than genocide if you wanted to crack jokes.

HFat, I was not joking. There was no smiley face in my original post. How could you possibly think I was joking?

I didn't call you a racist so why do you call me names?

I called you no names whatsoever. I did suggest that you: protest historical facts and cry even louder when someone suggests that people will act in the future pretty much like they acted in the past... You chose to not answer that charge but to cloud the matter by suggesting that I am a racist. Nothing in my post even hinted that I held racist ideas. People who cannot explain their positions often are known to play the race card.

My earlier post, about the coming anarchy and past clashes, have everything to do with how we may expect people to behave post peak oil. That is the point!

In the future, in times of crisis, people will behave much as they have behaved in the past. That is just human nature. Your loud protest of this claim, and your playing the race card shows you are not interested in attacking this argument.

You have my apologies for suggesting that you do not understand human nature. But I do prefer that explanation to the alternative. ;-)

Ron P.

You're not saying that the TOD crew is left-leaning, are you? The people the article talk about do exist but I haven't recognized many here.

The "war with the -isms" wasn't about democracy or capitalism. But I guess it provided a sense of possible doom. And I agree that it does seem that these eschatological notions fulfill some kind of psychological need. They're popular anyway and have been for quite some time.

Are we at the end of history? The idea that will not die.

The best three dollars I've spent this year was on a book called "What Does China Think?", by Mark Leonard. It's a quick and easy read, superficial, but useful because it points out a few of the questions.

The next "-ism" on the other side of the table is syndicalism. Democracy has never been important to the Chinese or other East Asians - the non-Chinese went along with this crazy Western notion while America was strong because they had to. Not for much longer. The post-1980 Chinese socio-economic model is visibly working, while the Western model is lurching and tottering. Other rulers would be irrational not to choose the Chinese model.

Following the new Chinese model, rulers will do what needs to be done without ever worrying about ideology. After the Transition, history will resemble that of Renaissance Italy, writ larger and faster. High-flown rhetoric about "democracy" will resemble Renaissance Papal Bulls denouncing one ruler or another, and will have the same effect.

It helps to have a well developed sense of irony when reading pronouncements from the MSM regarding Saudi production "capacity." When reading the following, keep mind that Saudi net oil exports were at 8.6 mbpd in 2004, when US oil prices averaged $42, and at 8.5 mbpd in 2008, when US oil prices averaged $100 (EIA).

The Saudis actually did make good on their 2004 promise to try to restrain prices, when they significantly increased their net exports to 9.1 mbpd in 2005 (which I suspect was their final production peak, but more importantly it was, IMO, almost certainly their final annual net export peak) but then in early 2006 they started complaining about an inability to find buyers for all of their oil, "Even their, light, sweet oil."

From the "Oil at $100 Doesn't Compute" article (linked uptop)

Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah has targeted $75 oil as a fair price for consumers and producers and has the capacity to increase pumping by about 50 percent, or 4 million barrels a day. . .

“Listen to the Saudis,” said Lawrence Eagles, the global head of commodities research at JPMorgan Chase & Co. in New York. “They have said they want prices at this level, and they have the ability to keep them here.”

. . . “The Saudis can close or open the valve and control the flow of oil at any time,” said Robert Ebel, chairman of the energy and national security program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington. “They realize it’s not in their interest to see prices climb to an unacceptable level.”

Opec studying plan to boost oil price band by a third (April, 2004)

Mr Al-Naimi said: "Saudi Arabia continues to be committed to OPEC's $22-28 price band. There are signs that worldwide inventories have begun to build but no one really knows for sure. I do not believe there is a fissure [within Opec]. There is dialogue. Opec in general is committed to the band," he said.

I don't think they can fall back on their "we-can't-find-customers-for-this-heavy-crude" line, either. Ostensibly they should have shut in some of the LSC for one thing, although I'm not sure if they've announced any specifics about what grades were curtailed. But this is a banner year for refinery builds:

Among these is the big new Reliance refinery in India: UPDATE 1-Reliance sees start of secondary units at refinery | Markets | Reuters

"We expect refinery to reach full capacity and stabilise in second quarter of the new financial year," he said. India's financial year runs from April to March.

According to trade sources, a crude distillation unit, a coker, a diesel hydrotreater and a vacuum gas oil hydrotreater are functional at the new refinery.

That kit should be able to handle anything sour and heavy. KSA's moves in the next year will be very telling, even more so than in the past, which I agree have been rather suspect, even granting them this excuse, which others have dismissed prima facie.

Except they obviously have some spare capacity this time. Not that this situation will last forever of course...

I agree that they now have "some," but the more rapid declines for Texas and the North Sea didn't kick in until the fourth year of their production declines, which would be 2009 for Saudi Arabia, based on the logistic model.

I think that 2010 will tell the tale. If 2010 average annual oil prices exceed the 2009 average and if 2010 average annual Saudi oil production does not exceed their 2005 rate, we will have seen five years of production and net exports below their 2005 rate, with four of the five years showing year over year increases in oil prices. Note that this is contrary to the price & production pattern in the years immediately leading up to 2005, i.e., rising production & net exports in response to higher prices from 2002 to 2005 (Saudi net exports rose by 28% from 2002 to 2005).

Have you charted in detail KSA or OPEC production responses to price? I'm familiar with John Williams' work at WTRG, but would like to see something month-to-month. Found a couple charts through Google Images:

Who has the 2nd Largest Oil Reserves and is the US’ Top Oil Supplier? « the LYNCH report Yet another Lynch commenting on oil! Don't think this is either Michael, though.

high oil prices DIDN'T increase oil production by much, which has an interesting one from Reuters.

You could check on this back to 1994 with EIA data. It would be an insight into producers' robustness. Question - how many non-OPEC producers with export capacity modulate production, that is, do they impose quotas for whatever reason, or do they all just pump flat out, figuring OPEC will get the job of regulating price?

Link up top: Peak oil? Ask an oilman.

The Oilman is John B. Hess, president of Hess Corp.

With 3 trillion barrels of recoverable oil available, we are not running out of oil, he says. The issue is global production capacity, and he cites a report from the U.K. Energy Research Centre that says we risk a peak in global oil production before 2020, and it could enter into terminal decline

Of course we do not have anything near 3 billion barrels of recoverable oil. If that were the case we would have recovered just over one quarter of all recoverable oil. But at least he understands that flow rates are about to peak. However 3 trillion barrels left and peak production are contradictions in terms. Funny how he does not explain that contradiction.

Ron P.

I suspect that he was counting all of the tar sands (renamed "oil sands" for PR reasons) and "oil" shale to reach 3 billion barrels.

And who is to say what Ghawar might produce by 2250 with CO2, surfactant, ultrasound, etc. recovery ?

Best Hopes for defining flow rates as the issue, not "reserves',


However 3 trillion barrels left and peak production are contradictions in terms.

No, they're not.

"3 trillion barrels left" is a statement about technically recoverable oil. It ignores economic factors. It may or may not be true, depending on how you define "oil", but it's not relevant to production rates. It's the old, sad, faded red herring.

"Peak production" is a statement about the rate at which we can deploy capital equipment. This is an industrial-economic statement. And it's about peak oil - our inability to continually increase the capital deployed to overcome geological reality. Hess is saying "peak oil is coming".


This patent is part of the eestor 'lets make super duper caps' and it seems the patent office will be making a decision soon about granting said patent.

(if one invokes the proper Google incantation, one can find a claim made by an electric bicyclist who claimed eestor told him they'd ship a product in 2007 - if believed, that means eestor had missed at least one target date. Also remember that a patent doesn't mean much. A shipping product has more meaning.)

I had a note I wanted to post with regards to energy efficiency in our economy:


Using Lawrence Livermore National Labs' estimates with some adjustments, I arrive at the conclusion that the US is economy is about 33% efficient in its conversion of primary energy to useful work. The true number is probably lower than that, but I was a bit conservative in my adjustments of the Livermore study assumptions.

If the US raised efficiency up to 50% from 33%, we could cut primary energy consumption by a third. Clearly a big part of the energy transition will happen in this fashion. I don't think we'll get much past 50% - beyond that point you start running into thermodynamic limits of all sorts.

Study the chart and you'll see that most of the energy losses are due to just two things: electricity generation/transmission/conversion, and transportation.

If you want a more energy-efficient US economy, there are just two simple, overarching things that must be done:

1) Cut way back on moving people and stuff around so much; and
2) Cut way back on the usage of stuff plugged into the grid.

These two things are where you will find the most "bang for the buck" in terms of potential energy efficiency savings to be found.

Obviously, while this overall prescription is simple, there would be a long and detailed to-do list of things that must be done under each of these two headings.

For people, reducing VMT is crucial, I agree. One reason is that people require a big, usually metal, cage around them (bicycling and walking excepted, but those modes use no oil).

For goods, the case is less strong. Shifting modes, to electrified rail (and pipelines with electric pumps) seems more important than reducing ton-miles. Shifting modes has such huge efficiency gains that it "solves" the problem.

Just as if 95% of US commuters shifted to bicycling & walking, the efficiency gains would be enough to "solve" the problem without reducing VMT (I do not foresee many 22 mile commutes by bike, but *IF* it happened ...), so to can a massive switch to electrified rail, powered by renewable electricity, "solve" the problem.

“[Electrified] Railways handle 32% of Swiss freight traffic and 16% of passenger traffic, but they use only 3% of the total energy required for all transportation.”

- SBB (SwissRail) Environmental Report

Best Hopes,


Alan: I agree with what you say and everything you do. You are one of the good guys, a genuine hero.

Nevertheless, it remains true that the biggest energy savings to be had in transport come from not transporting something in the first place. It really is impossible to beat zero.

I would add a third, and its a biggie:
3) Cut way back on using brute force power to maintain a thermal gradient across poorly insulated materials. In plain English, if your building isn't decently insulated, don't use brute force to maintain its temperature different from the surroundings.

You know, I think that might be low-hanging fruit, in the US at least. Buildings could be a lot greener. We did raise the specs during the last energy crisis, but I suspect a lot of that was offset by larger homes, and energy-wasting features like great rooms and picture windows. Never mind the American tendency to want to wear t-shirts and shorts all year. Except at work, where we wear wool suits - and air-condition the office so it's comfortable to do so even in July.

Vivian Loftness pushed the idea of changing building design to be more energy-efficient at the energy summit I posted about yesterday.

That is actually just at the top of a long list of "2nd tier" energy efficiency things. It is a long list, there are a lot of items on it. While some of these things are not huge, they do add up. Others, like your example, are pretty substantial.

Be that as it may, the chart makes clear that electricity and transport are the two really huge energy wasters. If you want to make big reductions in total energy consumption in a hurry, those are where you start.

The LLNL study must define end-use consumption as 100% efficient, otherwise its figures are completely unbelievable.

The Otto cycle engine is less than 33% efficient, and drive-train and other losses reduce the overall vehicle efficiency to less than 25% typically. And that's when the thing is actually moving. Traffic congestion, consumption related to maintenance of vehicles, unnecessarily split trips and indirect routing between departure and destination would reduce the overall consumer vehicle efficiency to 15% at best. At best. Vehicle age, tyre under-inflation and poor driving technique would get the typical figure down below 10%.

And that's counting moving the vehicle's own mass as useful work, not an unavoidable waste of energy - which it is, for most commuters.

Likewise with lighting. Throw in factors for lighting unoccupied spaces and for overlighting, and the efficiency goes way down. Incandescent lights still dominate in residences, and they are no more than 2% efficient to start with.

The only way this study can possibly make any sense is by ignoring any processes the other side of the final metered delivery. Which is dumb, because that's where a lot of energy is used -- strangely enough.

BBC NEWS | Technology | 'Road trains' get ready to roll

Road trains that link vehicles together using wireless sensors could soon be on European roads.

An EU-financed research project is looking at inexpensive ways of getting vehicles to travel in a 'platoon' on Europe's motorways.

Each road train could include up to eight separate vehicles - cars, buses and trucks will be mixed in each one.

The EU hopes to cut fuel consumption, journey times and congestion by linking vehicles together.

Early work on the idea suggests that fuel consumption could be cut by 20% among those cars and trucks travelling behind the lead vehicle.

Noticed this at Slashdot.

I imagine the fuel consumption of the lead vehicle would seriously dent the suggested 20% saving once added to the equation.

If governments want to conserve fuel why don't they simply reduce the speed limits, mandate smaller engines and cars, improve aerodynamics, engine efficiency and reduce vehicle weight. Reducing speed limits would also lower the bar and encourage alternate vehicle types onto the roads.

I have an idea !!!

Lets create trains that are 100, even 200 vehicles long ! And run them on low friction steel on steel instead of rubber on concrete or asphalt ! And use just one driver for all of them !

Best Hopes for Better Ideas :-)


BTW, there is limited use (Norfolk Southern, mainly Atlanta to Cincinatti) of using truck trailers with a second set of steel wheels near the "tail".

Alan, Triple Crown Services operates a fairly large network of Roadrailer service throughout the east and into the Twin Cities, DFW, Kansas City.

The Twin Cities to Chicago train on the Union Pacific is usually the first train to pass by my office each day.

BNSF operates the train from KC-FTW.

Sorry Alan, this idea was in a cartoon in New Scientist back in 1992 or thereabouts, when the "road train" idea was first mooted. The cartoon was one of a series called something like "The Cat's Guide to Life, the Universe, and Everything".

Just goes to show, scientists should be careful what they publish. Entrepreneurs pick up the stupid ideas and leave the good ones.

I agree with all this - but my 'fast and furious' solution is : Make all public transport FREE (buses, subway systems)AND dump all that cost onto the private car owner through a petrol tax. Now, let's see how that works out .... I can foresee heaps and loads of commuters enter "the Free Ticket"-public transport overnight. At some stage the burden on the car owners will topple them, but The_Wiseman understands this outcome and thus starts to charge some smaller amounts from the Free-bee-commuters to balance it all.

At some stage the general public will have gotten the message and there will be no way going back. The car will once again be seen as the luxury item it actually is (in geological time that is ...)

That sounds appealing as a form of retribution, but as with any 'Sin Tax', what do you do if you succeed in getting rid of the sin, and still need the tax?

How could this be designed so that there's enough of a fare (from the beginning), so that the transit system doesn't simply crash or have to charge outrageous prices once the Automobile tax-base collapses? Could a passenger-saturated system and a modest subsidy be devised?

I saw it 1st at Green Car Congress some weeks ago. Where it was also ridiculed.

Can you imagine if the lead vehicle was a truck. Slowing down and speeding up as he went up and over hills.

Or how about some leadfoot who weaves all over the road, or someone else who has a driving style that isn't really up to standard...

I was just looking at that GCC piece. This has various obvious pros, no need for an infrastructure build out of course. But then who will pay to have all these cars retrofitted with all this guidance tech? Will the added weight kill the gain in economy from being in a platoon? The legal issues alone look insurmountable, too.

It's appealing, but like candy. People want the advantages of a train, without having to give up "MY" car.. or the supposed luxury of isolation.

HEY! It's like taking the train to work, and still getting to look for parking! It's a Win/win!

I wonder how that train would Jack-knife, hitting a patch of ice.

China's Premier Warns Obama to Get America's Deficit to an "Appropriate Size"

"China, notably, is buying up hard assets with its cash including natural resources and oil from regions including Africa."


Just wanted to, once again, comment on the excellent dialogue here at TOD. Gradually, we begin to see a vision of what our, depending on your attitude, bleak or bright future post peak.

Certainly, things will be different. To the dedicated capitalist, probably a bad thing. To the fervant socialist, the same. For the nihilst, great. Darwinist will simply take notes, I guess.

To the realist, and we should hope to most of us, it will be a mix of good and bad, with the distance into each direction to be determined by how we react, and how resiliant and adaptable we all are. If we hold together the best of our civilization, our scientific and historical knowledge, and our humanity, perhaps we will really have a better life, if a simpler one. I do not equate one to the other, but neither do I postulate that one excludes the other.

Even Kuntsler does not presume that stone aged barbarism is in our future. It is just that the trip to sustainability could be rocky.

Could the public at large never see Peak Oil, and attribute their decline in standard of living to something else entirely? Denninger is making a case for higher commodity prices when the world economies start to recover. He attribute higher oil prices to the carry trade phenomenon and the devaluation of the dollar by financiers and monetary policy makers. The end result is the same i.e. much lower standard of living, but the perception of cause could not be more different. Ten years from now, the US is forced to consume ~10 mbpd, what will the masses think was the cause of their decline?

I think that is quite likely, and did even before the economic crisis. It will be the politically expedient thing, to blame greedy Chinese, greedy Arabs, treehuggers, Big Oil, etc., rather than geology.

By and large, most will never understand the reasons for the collapse of the western industrial empire. And no doubt that generation after generation will try to regain what was lost, never understanding the limitations that make this impossible.

We are possibly - and I want to stress possibly - on the verge of a major move down in the US dollar and up for oil/gold by year end.

Basically, Denninger is right in that the Fed abandoned worrying about the dollar for now. Actually it is very clear why - the Fed specifically states that dealing with unemployment is now its highest priority, and employment has not increased in any month now for almost two years.

While eventually most people will realize how this coming inflation will ruin their lives, they do not realize those inflationary fiscal/monetary policies where initiated as a reaction to economic declines caused by the peaking of cheap oil and other resources.

Granted many here still cling to the idea that peak oil will result in deflation, but I'm getting tired of debating this issue. Previously, I predicted a large rise in precious metals prices way back in 2005, which can be verified by checking some of my articles that can be found at the 321gold.com website. Things will get more unstable over time and everyone will have to deal with the coming upheaval in their own way.

The other important factor is the big guys are borrowing basically at 0% and investing in anything but the US dollar -this carry trade is lucrative and lots of fun for them-the decline in the dollar can be spun as necessary medicine while they totally loot all the candy.

denninger states ...

I hope everyone here in The United States takes a moment to understand what this means. Let me lay it out for you:

When the global economy truly recovers oil will skyrocket up to or beyond the $150 where it was in late 2008. If the dollar is indeed still "overvalued" and going to 40 as many technicians predict, oil will likely reach $300 a barrel. This will in turn drive gasoline prices north of $6, heating oil will reach $7-8/gallon, and diesel will be commensurate with heating oil.

This will in turn decimate the trucking industry. Now you know why Buffett bought BNI. Many things he may be, but dumb isn't one of them. Trucks will of course remain for terminal-to-door deliveries but for long-haul they will simply be uneconomic. Those who currently are employed in this business will lose their jobs. All of them.

The middle class will be decimated. Those who live in suburbia, who are primarily middle-class Americans, will find themselves faced with commute costs that are double or more what they pay now. Those in the middle class who live in the Northeast where heating oil is the primary fuel for winter, where natural gas infrastructure does not exist to replace heating oil, will find themselves choosing between heat and food in large numbers.


Anybody have the latest todban script release 0.8.20080609.0?

Ericy posted a link to it in an older thread in January, but that link has since gone dead.

Unfortunately I didn't save mine and a recent system re-install made me lose that invaluable script.

Would appreciate if somebody that has a copy of this latest version could post a download link to it.


There's something wrong with the machine on which my website lives. I am not getting any email either. I am trying to figure out a way to reach an admin so they can kick it and get it going again.

I can get to my files - that's a different matter, and while I am at it I am backing everything up..

Edit: It seems to be a problem with one of the DNS servers. I have 2 configured, and it seems that neither one is offering DNS service any more :-(. I found a 3rd one that is functioning, but I am still waiting to hear from the admins..

Edit2: I fixed the registration, and it should start working again. It could take a day or so for the change to propagate, but I am already starting to see email come through. Here's the link to todban:


Thank you, Ericy! Downloaded, installed and working beautifully. A great time-saver, many thanks.

Didn't see this in today's postings so I thought I'd throw it in:

Key oil figures were distorted by US pressure, says whistleblower
Exclusive: Watchdog's estimates of reserves inflated says top official

The world is much closer to running out of oil than official estimates admit, according to a whistleblower at the International Energy Agency who claims it has been deliberately underplaying a looming shortage for fear of triggering panic buying.

Not that anyone here has suspected this all along.


The sources are not identified, but it's been clear that the IEA has been somewhat divided on the topic of peak oil for awhile.

Panic buying? That is what they are worried about? Which is worse, panic buying now or making no preperations for peak oil because the facts were supressed by the IEA? What the hell do they think will happen when the facts do come out way too late to do anything about them?

Question: How reliable is The Guardian? Do they just publish anything that will sell papers or are they very reliable, checking their sources?

Ron P.

Well, I think TPTB within the US applying this kind of pressure would be worried about several things that can be summed up as maintaining business as usual. Panic buying in the oil markets would be just one aspect. Like Colin Campbell said at the bottom of the article (although they indicated they were quoting him from 2004) if people really grasped where we stand and what the impact of peak oil will be, the financial system would collapse since it depends on a constant influx of bigger suckers.

As to the reputation of theguardian.co.uk, I'm hoping some of our friends from that side of the pond can chime in. I had never heard of it until about 2003 when I started obsessing over how horribly one-sided the news networks in the States was and started getting my news from overseas sources. The Guardian, Globe and Mail (Canadian, I know) and The Independent became regular stops for me and I can't recall The Guardian having let me down yet.

But after some reflection on what the impact of this one story will be, I've decided it's not such a huge deal. First, this isn't the BBC or CNN or even Fox; as you point out, who the hell is "The Guardian"? So, most people will never hear about it. If it does get picked up at all, the people in the article will be dismissed as disgruntled ex (or soon to be ex) workers with a score to settle or low-level employees who don't have "the big picture". Then the usual suspects will be trotted out to explain patiently that we still have lots of oil just waiting to be discovered and everyone should just queue up for their new loans for newer houses and more efficient cars and everything will be just fine. And the sheeple will go back to work obediently and forget those ever happened.

I'm prepared to be pleasantly wrong but I've seen this play out too often so that's my take.

The Guardian is perhaps the most respected British newspaper with The Times… it's not The Sun!
So of course they must have carefully checked their sources...

The Guardian

Editorial articles in The Guardian are generally to the left of the political spectrum. This is reflected in the paper's readership: a MORI poll taken between April and June 2000 showed that 80% of Guardian readers were Labour Party voters;[7] according to another MORI poll taken in 2005, 48% of Guardian readers were Labour voters and 34% Liberal Democrat voters.[8] The newspaper's reputation as a platform for liberal and left-wing opinions has led to the use of the phrase "Guardian reader" as a label for people holding such opinions

I find "the truth" ,or reality if you like, more often in Left Wing papers. In the other Wing papers I find more often "not the Truth". Just my feelings there.

And as a side comment to yours, I agree that the IEA better speak their inner thoughts to us OECD members, or else ....

They suggest in that last paragraph that people have been warning about peak oil "as far back as 2004," using Campbell as their example - and saying he was ex-Total, confusing him with Laherrère. Sloppy journalism.

Should be quite the dust up tomorrow.

I find that I can come to an understanding of something that reasonably approximates the truth by reading both the left and the right.

At this time even though I am by inclination conservative the truth seems to reside more in the publications of the left than those of the right.

Oldfarmer, the left-right thing has long been merely a puppet show of the political theatre show that plays constantly to hide the real levers of power and the pseudicness of electoral democracy.
In reality all the establishment clique are united as adherents of the Third Way which never speaks its name or states its reality. It is a coalescence of globalised corporate interests ("rightwing") with the Politically-Correct dogmas of the supposedly left. Pro-Globalisation and Pro-Immigration conspire together to increase rich people's profits by lowering wages, and driving up housing demand to enable mega-gains for the property owners. Meanwhile true believer "antiracists" etc get to impose their blinkered values over the backs of local people whose ancestors have invested their all in that particular locality. The guardian has published a huge number of pro-Islam "religion of peace" articles by Islam propagandists and yet never any anti-Islam ones. And yesterday it published "Stand up, stand up, against Jesus". Somehow I could have guessed it would not have been titled "Stand up, stand up, against Mohammed".
This "Guardian" would never dream of publishing any holocaust-denial article. But it constantly publishes articles of Jihad Denial, denial of 14 centuries of a far larger holocaust which bloodily continues to this day all around the world.
Some honest commentary about the supposed "religion of peace":(same vids different format)

Good News , one of the largest Norwegian papers (web edition) is echoing that Guardian article this morning. Just for the record.

It seems like there is a new 'World Energy Outlook' being released today.

Well, makes me wonder then if perhaps the timing on this was planned to ride the story on the coat tails of World Energy Outlook release. Someone else has posted that this has hit Reuters. It would seem to present an easy way for editors to make their publication look "fair and balanced" to run one article on the WEO and have this next to it.

Here's hoping towards a higher level of public discussion.

It has indeed made Reuters, and many other sources.

I see the WEO of last year as a watershed moment in world energy history. It was the first time a governmental agency had admitted even the possibility of a mid-term peak (as far as I remember). We all debated whether the decline rates were accurate, with most saying they were likely about right and others saying they had to be even higher than in that report. (I know I felt they were likely even higher than the @4.5 overall and 6.5-ish for declining fields stated. Simmons thought so.)

It was interesting to see those numbers become essentially accepted during the intervening year as *the* numbers. Of course, some of that was just not wanting to renew the debate every post. Considering it was just a year earlier that PO had started getting any official or semi-official acknowledgment, after all, so those numbers were close enough for most of us, I suppose.

What's unsettling about this article isn't that some of us, assuming the article is legit, were right, it's having the scariest thing in your closet stepping into the light. It's kind of freaky to be saying the sky is falling then have a chunk of blue hit the ground at your feet.

However, even more unsettling is this: should the article prove to be accurate - and how could it not? It fits too perfectly with the past decade's events - will the degree of disconnect between published figures and reality be as big as it was last November when the previous WEO was published? If so, the Great Recession is one blessed event in the short term. Then again, if decline rates are more like 6% overall, 9% in declining fields and 12% in the most depleted fields (as opposed to 4.5, 6.5 and 9+), doesn't that put us on a collision course with coal? Then, AGW?

I laugh at scary movies. Always have. (Well, since about 7yrs old, anyway.) I've always enjoyed imagining things walking out of the closet and climbing out from under the bed.

This time? Not so much.


I also woke up today (10th) to this news. Oh my. We've discussed the possibility of this here at TOD for some years now, but this was quite unexpected still.

BTW, AFP, Reuters, Telegraph and many others are carrying the same Guardian story. It's getting spread widely and fast. This cannot go unnoticed or ignored

On a related note, the discrepancy between rising oil futures curve (c. $100 for March 2010), OECD inventory levels (highest in almost c. 10 years) and OPEC alleged spare capacity + announced production increases continues to widen.

Something's gotta give soon(ish).

This time my bet is that it might be the oil price first, but that the relief will be fairly short-lived. Again, as usual, I could be 100% wrong on this. It could be we get the W (or U) dip due to second oil price spike faster than expected. Time and the withdrawal of QE liquidity from the markets will tell :)

ccpo's comments are, imho, on the mark. Although I believe we are on a collision course with coal, regardless of whether we get higher decline rates or not. It's just so relatively cheap and there's no way unconventionals, alternatives and renewables can fill the gap in the interim. Coal is what we have, it's cheap, abundant and spread fairly widely (regarding growth & consumption zones). So coal is what we are going to use.

The Guardian is globocorp propaganda like all the msm, but obviously the leak from the IEA is genuine.

This looks like a significant brick in the wall falling out.

But this is only one of the bricks to fall / dots to be joined.
There remain:
-oil supply has arguably already got stuck since 2005 and caused the current "recession"
-collision with growth-addicted system
-no sufficient alternatives
-restoring "growth" is not a desirable thing anyway
-physics rules politics and economics rather than the pol/econs delusion that it is other way round.
-populations are well into neo-Malthusian overshoot.

Re which note the clueless "elite" still fantasising about when the "recovery" will come at
(at 34th minute) (including the, ahem, "prescient guru" Vince Cable)
(Btw, it was this John Hemming (in the guardian report) who first told me about peak oil at the local pub in response to one of my anti-car lectures!)

This looks like a significant brick in the wall falling out.

But this is only one of the bricks to fall / dots to be joined.

Yes, but I'm not hoping for the whole, to borrow a phrase, Iron Triangle to collapse all at once. There's a mighty big facade protecting this system and the only way to tackle it is one brick at a time. I wake up to find that perhaps this really will get some traction in the public discourse. So, that's one brick down. Time to keep chippin away at the mortar.

Getting the first brick out of the wall is the hardest. Once the first is out, you can get a real purchase behind other bricks with your pickaxe and haul them out several at a time. Clear yourself an opening to walk thru in relatively short order.

Antoinetta III

The executive summary of the World Energy Outlook 2009 is out:

From what I read there, they show much concern about the global climate change, and absolutely no concern about peak oil. Just have a look at the following paragraph...

Oil demand (excluding biofuels) is projected to grow by 1% per year on average over the projection period, from 85 million barrels per day in 2008 to 105 mb/d in 2030. All the growth comes from non-OECD countries: OECD demand actually falls. The transport sector accounts for 97% of the increase in oil use. As conventional oil production in countries not belonging to the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) peaks around 2010, most of the increase in output would need to come from OPEC countries, which hold the bulk of remaining recoverable conventional oil resources.

They also call for more energy investment, and note that natural gas will have increased importance in the future energy mix. However:

In absolute terms, coal sees by far the biggest increase in demand over the projection period, followed by gas and oil.

Klackon, thanks for the post. This says a lot more then you realize. It is really a bombshell! I have more to say but I am going to save it for today's Drumbeats. I am sure it will be much discussed there.

Ron P.