DrumBeat: June 12, 2006

Now for some wise words from the readers of The Oil Drum...
Fidel Castro Warns of World Food Crisis

Cuban President Fidel Castro asserted the lack of fuel in the world and its current price will worsen the problem of food.

Grain and cereal productions are increasingly targeting the production of alcohol to be used as fuel for automobiles, stated Fidel Castro in his address to the Cuban People´s Power National Assembly (parliament) seventh period of sessions.

That means automobiles are competing with food and humankind is not prepared to cope with the current energy crisis, noted the leader of the Cuban Revolution.

And in Hawaii:

'Energy plantation' would require water guarantees

Alexander & Baldwin has long said that the future of HC&S cannot continue to be in sugar as a commodity. The 37,000-acre farm must become an "energy plantation."

In concept, at least, this fits in with the state's energy policy, which calls for 20 percent of inputs from renewable sources by 2020.

Whether it also fits with state water policy is a question.

Steve Holaday, general manager of Hawaiian Commercial & Sugar, said money is being spent on solving technical problems and preliminary engineering designs.

"Our hang-up," he said, "is we don't have long-term access to irrigation water," which biomass electricity must have.

The idea here seem to be to burn sugar cane leaves for electricity, not to make ethanol.  Still, it requires water which they may not be able to get.

Being endorsed by Castro is sort of like being endorsed by the Ku Klux Klan or the Scientologists. Lots of people will use the peculiar ideas of the endorsers as a reason to dismiss Peak Oil as a nutty idea that is possibly evil. We need to lose this quote and endorsement of our ideas before Fox News picks it up. It's kinda like sleeping with a fat person-a whole lot of fun until your friends see you with 'em.
We need to lose this quote and endorsement of our ideas before Fox News picks it up.

Way too late for that, dude.  Cuba has been embraced as the answer to peak oil by many environmentalists, liberals, and peak oilers for years now.  

I prefer to point to Switzerland during WW II, where they went through a 6 year, 100% oil embargo.  By 1845, they had "powered down" their oil use by ~93% while continuing as a functioning democracy and preserving a decent, if difficult, quality of life.

They made a strategic decision in the 1920s to electrify their railroads and preserve & expand their tram lines, all running off domestic hydroelectric power.

Wood gasifiers for transport and Ag
Per reports from a Swiss source, "some thousands" of wood source cars or tractors.  They were not common.

They also were hard on the engines.

VERY little transportation via rubber tires (emabrgo there as well) except bicycle and electric trolley bus.

Hand labor? in country oil reserves? Horses and oxen? for food production. I don't think that they had electric tractors...How people moved in towns doesn't interest me as much as ag.  Without ag...?
In country food reserves, most Swiss agriculture is alpine (i.e. herding).  Every square meter was hand planted in cities & towns.  Nearby areas suitable for row crops were tilled by hand (also grapes & orchards).  And agriculture got the oil that was left over after the army training, police and medical uses.

Potatoes. for example, can be cultivated by hand quite effectively.

Maybe so. But Castro is talking sense.  
Like those other world leaders TPTB dislike immensely (Chaves, Morales, Ahmadinejad, Putin, Hu, etc) he has an annoying tendancy to to that from time to time.

Only a question about energy:

When the price of oil will hurt the economy in EEUU for a real demand destruction?

At what price?

(P.D. I´m spanish, sorry by errors.)

If we knew that, it would be kind of like being able to predict landfall for any hurricanes that might pop up this August. We would arrange our chips on the roulette table of commodities to benefit from the knowledge ...
I think that the first steps up the price ladder will destroy demand in the smaller economies -- i.e. emerging markets or small currency markets.  Perhaps the next $10 or $20 dollars in oil price will do that, but who knows?

Once the small economies are out of the market, then the bidding will move up to the US/Euro/Yen currency blocks.  This is when the real spikes could occur.  My guess is that the Yen could fail first -- they import energy and food, and have been the biggest money printers in recent years.  But again, who knows?  

Why would a small currency market have a harder time to buy oil? My first guess is that it should depend on the competetiveness of the industry in the small currency market and the industry and infrastructure efficiency. Is there something inherently bad with having a small currency such as SEK?
"Infrastructure efficiency" was what I was thinking, perhaps I over-generalized using EM.  For instance, I read somewhere that the average speed of a truck in India was something like 25 mph.
I think when gas prices hit $6/gallon the US should adopt the metric system.  It might not be so overwelming.  $1.60/litre is not so frightening and the controversy will take away from the real issue.
I like the trickery...u know it would work too that's the sad part.
That is almost exactly the Swedish petrol price with taxes.
People complain about it but they do not revolt.

Go for it, every killing of a "funny unit" is a good kill.

The economic activities that are 'oil-inefficient' will be the first to go or at least to get a hard time. Driving a hummer to work is not very efficient for example ;-)

Currency will have something to do with it, because even if you are 'energy efficient', but the surrounding economy is fragile, you still will be competed out of the market because the economy surrounding you will crumble (unless you are completely export oriented ofcoarse)

However, for stable economies, even small ones, it won't matter that much.

Talking about the yen, people tend to forget that the Japanese economy is about half the size of the US. That is a mighty large piece. And that they are running in the black, for years and years now. However, the japanese are very dependent on export. If export falls, then so does the economy. In case of a dollar / euro / sterling / etc in trouble, the asian exporting countries will immediately feel the pain, not only the yen.

Japanese economy is about half the size of the US
Yet the Japanese monetary base is larger than the US at current exchange rates. And they import lots of energy. And food. And have a demographic problem. So I agree, they are very dependent on exports.
I'd argue that it's more likely when/if oil is traded in Euros, this will crash the US dollar since banks would have to sell it for Euros, banks would find that they have to foreclose on houses for the cash, which in turn ends the US economy, and send us into the post industrial age. weee

peakoil is the end of the industrial economy, not of countries or people. Actually, humans are going to make a big comeback, if the Japanese 250 years of self-imposed isolation in The Edo Period (1603-1867) is anything to go by.  This was a human powered economy and a useful lesson. Besides, now they at least have the cool trains that we all lack ;)

I wouldn't worry about the YEN or Japan.  It will surely have its crisis as will any country, but with the USA in the trillions of dollars in debt and burdened by it's SUV suburban society and highways, it's the US that will likely fall the fastest.  Without cheap gas nobody can spend or go anywhere.  Then they'll find out that there's also nowhere to go to.

I think a hummer will make a nice planter.


I'd argue that it's more likely when/if oil is traded in Euros, this will crash the US dollar since banks would have to sell it for Euros, banks would find that they have to foreclose on houses for the cash, which in turn ends the US economy, and send us into the post industrial age. weee

Which college did you go to? You seem to know a lot about it.

My Toyota is also priced in Yens, but I pay in Euro's. Is the bank now going to sell my house or are my children going hungry? Please tell me, I need to know. Shall I move in with my parents or is the bank going to sell their house too? (They eat a lot of Australian Beef, priced in A$, you know)

Can I still fly in a Boeing, or only Airbus?

naw, your house is fine.  the gold you buried in the backyard will protect your country from hyperinflation or is it hyperdeflation?  you have gold don't you?   or maybe that's another peak, peak gold!

Your Toyota pulled by oxen will make a nice tractor, if you can find the oxen...

Since the US dollar is propped up by sales of all oil transactions being done in US Dollars, (OPEC) if that were to change (Charez is chair this year) then the economic bubble of the US would come into question.  I don't think this likely as everyone would lose their #1 customer but it points to the..y'know.. reality and fragility of the US state of debt and how the world holds it up. ( I'm going to guess that each country's trade surplus and deficit will also play a role in a similar way. )

Banks around the world to facilitate oil transactions need to have US dollars.  The US dollar is the end transaction, so it's a means of keeping the country afloat in debt without penalty.  A sudden selloff of dollars in exchange for euros/rubles/loonies/marbles anything, would lower the US dollar, thereby making oil (and everything else imported into the US) more expensive to buy and gas as well etc.  

From what I understand money is loaned into existense plus interest by the banks and if paid off with no new loans coming online, money is essentially retracted from the economy.  I think this means recession if a large enough housing bubble bursts?

Everyone but the USA seems to try to put their house in order.  Here in Canada we cut our debt a lot in the 90's by cutting a lot of social programs (not medicare of course) however the the US spent more, Dem or Rep.  This has always left me scratching my head.

When exactly are Americans going to pay off their debts anyway?  I think many in the face of peak oil will in fact spend even more if they knew there wasn't an industrial pizza shopping mall later on.  Given the debt situation who can blame them?

trillion dollar Market Correction = Second Depression

making oil (and everything else imported into the US) more expensive to buy
And making the US grain exports more valuable to sell.

I can surely put off buying that plasma TV and wine refrigerator until next year, but will the world put off eating until next year?

We import far more than we import, so who cares if our crops are moderatly more expensive. Local farmers in their local economies seize an opportunity to compete due to the high cost of US crops.  Don't forget we import far more than we export, so on net as a country we are still losers with higher priced crops but even higher cost EVERYTHING ELSE.  
Imports would have to fall by 35% to get trade in balance.
Agreed, but due to either inflation or deflation there will be consequences to everything we pay. If everything costs more then imports will crimp even more spending due to higher prices.  In deflation our crops are worth even less, while import prices remain higher still. I think I'm firmly on the fence now about whether we see inflation or deflation, but I still lean towards inflation.

I'm thinking more macro than plasma tv's for my living room.  Those plasma tv's are going to get more expensive or remain flat, best case.  The cost efficiencies appear to have been rung out of production.  I've found 42' plasmas for under $4k.  Don't know about the quality, but DLP is far better anyway and that is OWNED by Texas Instruments, so they are at the helm when it comes to producing those.

I'm trying to put forward that regardless of the price of the imports in the "consumer goods" categories (e.g. "leather products" $8B ytd deficit, "appliances and electrical" $9B, "computers and electronics" $45B, "transportation equipment" $32B, "apparel" $20B, etc.) that we'll buy much less of these things. I think that the prices of these things will fall, and you think that the prices of these things will rise. Neither of us may be clearly correct in the short run.

However, I think that our exports of grains will remain steady or rise, but definitely fall much less than those "consumer goods". Further, risky-asset prices will fall, and "riskless" asset prices will rise (lower yield).

All of this seems to fit a "deflation" scare description better than an "inflation" scare to me.

Would you consider hydroelectric producers, either utilities or merchant, as "low risk" ?

Different nations:

New Zealand

Your thoughts ?

It's entirely possible that all "non-riskless" assets, even utilities, go down in the current (#1) seasonal weakness (combined with #2 cyclical weakness), before any (#3) secular weakness hits the markets. If we get all three hits (only #1 and #2 are expected at this stage) then it's tough sledding for a while. #1 and #2 will last only thru October. #3 is when the Fed comes back in play with the downkick in interest rates.
I think sustained US$70+ per barrel oil is leading, step by step to a recession in the United States (elsewhere as well I suspect).  Perhaps a year away, perhaps closer.

A recession will reduce demand.  Unemployed people drive less, closed offices & industries use less as well.

I think this is the worst thing only because demand will soften, prices will abate for a while and the perception will change to this being another hiccup on the rollercoaster of life.  We would find ways to waste more.
Rosneft's float to raise about $10bln - source

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russian state oil firm Rosneft is hoping to raise around $10 billion (5.4 billion pounds) in its initial public offering, a source familiar with the IPO said as the share issue was launched on Monday.

The offering, which will be one of the world's biggest ever IPOs, will give a chance for investors to buy into Russian oil and for Russia's most leveraged firm to pay off a $7.5 billion debt.

The main goal of the IPO is to pay $7.5 billion back to four banks who lent the sum to the Kremlin last year, enabling Russia to buy a controlling stake in gas firm Gazprom.
How sad my soviet friends have sunk so low as IPO's.
One of the McPaper's cover stories today is about the increasing problem of student loan debt:

In debt before you start

The average college senior graduated this year with more than $19,000 in debt. That's a problem Joe Palazzolo would love to have.

Palazzolo, 25, graduated on Mother's Day from Rutgers University with a master's degree in public policy and student loans exceeding $116,000. His payments will average about $800 a month. It could have been worse: Because of his top grades, Rutgers paid Palazzolo's tuition for his final year of graduate school.

At a time when his friends are thinking about buying their first homes, he's looking for roommates to share a three-bedroom house so he can limit his rent to $600 a month. "I feel like I've done everything I was supposed to do, and at the end of the day, I've got this huge debt," Palazzolo says. "What did I do wrong?"

After years of rising college costs and shrinking financial aid, it's come to this: Some graduates are now leaving college with student-loan debt in the six figures.

Graduates with more than $100,000 in debt still account for a small subset of borrowers. But their numbers are rising. And the proportion who are leaving college with some level of unmanageable debt -- debt they can't repay without significant hardship -- is swelling.

There's less government aid than there used to be, and more pressure for advanced degrees. Students are taking out the loans because in the long term, having a degree has paid off.  But it can take many years  for that to happen.  

Especially hard-hit are people in fields that require degrees but don't pay well, such as education.

The US secondary education system is uncommonly ungenerous.  I've got a B.Sc. and M.A.Sc. now in the Canadian system and am in a Ph.D. program and I'm slowly increasing my savings.  When I looked into programs in Europe like at T.U. Delft in the Netherlands they paid their Ph.D. students starting at €18000 for the first year and progresses to €45000 by the third.
Militants set on fire US base-bound oil tanker in Afghanistan

    KABUL, June 12 (Xinhua) -- Unknown militants set on fire a U.S. base-bound oil tanker in the southern Ghazni province on Monday, a senior police official said.

    "The incident occurred in Andar district leaving the tanker's driver dead and injured its conductor," Asil Khan told Xinhua.

Not a good way to start off the week.


A Kunstler interview:

Suburbia's Worst Enemy

Since the 1994 release of The Geography of Nowhere, author James Howard Kunstler has been among the most acerbic critics of North American urban design. Kunstler has argued that suburban sprawl has left citizens almost entirely dependent on cars, just as the world nears the historic peak of oil production. What happens after we pass that fossil fuel "tipping point"? That's the subject of Kunstler's latest book, The Long Emergency, in which the author describes the massive changes that Americans -- and their neighbours -- will experience as the age of cheap oil drips to a close. In what The Guardian describes as "a 300-page dirge to the doom that awaits us," Kunstler predicts the end of cheap aviation, the withering of the American southwest, the collapse of global trade and a shallow grave for suburbia, among other horrors.
I sure wish Kunstler would give up an the Pirates of the North Pacific theme. It makes about as much sense as the muggers living near Central Park going to the Hamptons to do their mugging because the victims are so much richer there.

As has always been the case, when people start looking for someone to rob, they go to their neighbors, not halfway around the world.

You said it. He's an entertaining author but I doubt that he believes half of the stuff he writes.

I sure wish Kunstler would give up an the Pirates of the North Pacific theme. It makes about as much sense as the muggers living near Central Park going to the Hamptons to do their mugging because the victims are so much richer there.

I wouldn't say you have proven there won't be pirates. You have really suggested he should change their likely ancestry. History records that caucasians are not entirely averse to acts of piracy.

Hoist the Jolly Roger matey!

not to mention pirates have not gone away, no i do not mean those who copy software.
the pirates have just moved to the lesser patrolled Asian country's.
once the bigger effects of p.o. hit and our forces are focused more internally i bet you pirates will start to roam closer to our shores. they do it now because well, do you honestly thing they have a chance against a aegis cruiser?
The US Navy is about to  commission two very different designs (one a tri-hull design) of small shallow draft VERY fast (~50 mph) very manueverable "mini-destroyers".  Piracy patrols is one of the mentioned missions.

The USN would like about 50.  Minesweeping, shore support and some other missions.

Wasn't the first US Marine expeditionary mission(to Tripoli) basically an offshoot of anti-piracy measures?
"From the halls of Montezuma,
To the shores of Tripoli...." - Marine Battle Hymn

Note also that highway brigandry (banditry) is just piracy for the land lubbers. Arrrgh!

Hello TOD,
The other day I started a topic regarding "Building or Way out of Depression." As it happens it would seem to me that more discussion is in order.

Daily we see topics about alternatives; we receive rave reviews of the latest reactor design; possible gas fields and the list keeps going. I hope members can openly debate this "Building or Bust" concept since at least to me it is about to become the largest issue we will face or run from.

My contention is that we can't build public works projects nor can we build affordable housing. The main reason that we will stop building is peak oil. Things will taper off and the poor will vanish to yet unknown locations.

The other day in this debate the Halliburton Camps in the USA were brought up. And I threw the question out there, "Who will be sent to these camps?" I expressed concern over just the possibility. I thought. "Why tempt fate?"

There appear to be many who are willing to tempt fate and I want to hear how and why they are so trusting when it comes to our ruling class?

I hope members can share what they know about denial, power, control and groupthink.

Remember the final scene in that movie 3 Days of the Condor? Someone from TOD posted a clip from it a while back. Wearing what may just be the worst hairpiece in the history of cinema, Cliff Robertson delivers the cynical lines.

Well I think it's probably a backup plan for that.

I certainly agree about the folly of the concept that "we'll build our way out of this mess".  We build stuff with the energy from fossil fuels.
Interesting article in the Boston Herald (!) last week: The major construction firm around here for big stuff, Macomber(or something real close to that name) is running out of projects to do.  When they finish up some things later this year they don't have much after that on the books, and are looking at the liklihood of massive layoffs.  Many higher-ups have already jumped ship.  Of course one of the major reasons given is "foreign competition", but increasing costs were cited, and we all know what's driving that, don't we?
we can't build public works projects
Depends on the projects.  I think that the government is not so bad at some of these projects -- like the interstate highway system or railroad system (decades ago).

If we believe ASPO, oil will peak first (2005), and then natural gas (2011).  And since a lot of our oil use is "discretionary" (like vacations and such), we will manage with just a bad recession.  This liquid fuels "wake up call" should occur before the fertilizer "wake up call" that could hit our food supply, so there is a window of opportunity for us to get serious about restructuring toward electricity wherever we can.

The hope is that a shared adversity will bring society together, like WWII, rather than create divisions.  For example, one of the senators at the recent Greenspan testimony, who came from a UAW state, was delving into some rather anti-auto related issues.  

Natural gas in North America is a couple of years PAST peak.
Natural gas in the USA is 33 years PAST peak. We reached the peak in 1973 and then reached a secondary, but lower peak, in 2001.


What's your point?
Fertilizer is made from natural gas. Haber-Bosch process.
It should be clear that I understand that from my original post.  I just don't see why bringing up the NA nat gas peak is specifically relevant.  Fertilizer can be made wherever the nat gas is found.
Sorry, Wstephens. I assumed Sunspot was trying to point out worsening situation regarding natural gas (post peak), and how it might relate to your coming fertilizer crisis.
We are a nation of builders are we not.  I find it interesting to look at the local hispanics- fitting 3-4 family's into a single family home.  Who said we need to build anything???.  We just need to pack more people into the houses that we already have.  Spread to heating bills over more people.  mass-transit-housing-poorer american style.  probably tear down some houses and burn them in wood stoves to heat the others.
Huge recession AKA "Greater Depression" already upon us, only hidden by doctored government numbers. Figures don't lie, but liers figure.
Tax revenue will plummet, and further attempts to borrow by the U.S. government will result in laughing fits from any potential lender.
We, the people, will build railroads run on alternative energy sources. By our labor we will finance this.
government numbers
This seems to be a popular retort these days. But it works both ways -- the government numbers show a "negative" savings rate recently, but according to an analysis that I saw somewhere (can't find ref?) the govt calculation completely misses the accounting related to S-corporations. Given the wild popularity over the past decade, or so, of S-corps, the government savings rate calculation could be very pessimistically far off the mark.

This could explain some of the differences in the employment numbers. It would also explain the "un-expected by economists" strength in the economy. It also could be what's be-devil-ing the "perma-bear" crash mongers -- they may have assumed that all govt numbers are wrong in the same direction (woops!).

Let's play pretend for a moment on jobs...

There are 100 workers and at some point 5 get laid off. These 5 report to unemployment and are able to collect unemployment for a period of time. So 5% unemployed becomes the recorded rate of unemployment.

Of these 5 workers 3 are able to go back to work at a new job or call back. The remaining 2 were unable to find work at all and no extension is offered at the unemployment office. Unemployment sends everyone a questionnaire asking "How did you find your job", when you're done collecting.

As it turns out these 2 that did not find work are added back to the 100 workers along with the 3 that did find work. So statistically the unemployment can appear quite low since in this example only 98% of available workers are actually working. That 2% are considered to be employed statistically. I know this is a fact since it happened to me

More pretend (except this is real):

A guy starts an S-corporation and captilizes it with money. He buys equipment. This is counted as spending, but nothing is counted as investment/savings. He works hard building his business. His wife helps him -- so the output is closer to 2 people working than 1 person. His S-corp payroll is 1 person (just himself), but when the "payroll survey" is conducted by the government the wife says that she is not "unemployed" -- hence the "discrepancy" in the two employment series and a gap in the "savings" rate.

What is the, "except this is real" crack wstephens?
It's not a crack. After re-reading your post I hope you didn't take offense. I just meant that the discrepancy is "real-ly" showing up in the numbers. Bad joke.

The effect that you are talking about is not new. The effect that I'm talking about is apparently new. And because it is new, economists may not have adjusted to its implications. Long term un-employment is an old issue that economists have sliced and diced in and out of data for a long time.

  • "Greater Depression already upon us"
  • "tax revenue will plummet"

    from WSJ

    Surging individual and corporate income-tax receipts in May continued to help the federal government shrink the budget deficit to $227 billion for the first eight months of the fiscal year, down 16.6% from the same period a year earlier.
    So what do you mean by "already upon us"?
  • Supposedly the guv is planning some construction:http://www.humaneventsonline.com/article.php?print=yes&id=15497 . Don't know if this is accurate but it should employ a few if it is.
    AlphaOmega -

    I think it's been persuasively argued that the massive public works projects of FDR's New Deal actually contributed very little to ending the Great Depression and that their chief value was in restoring faith in the federal government, which at the time had deteriorated to a crisis level.

    WW II is what really snapped the US out of the Great Depression, but that was merely an exercise in deficit spending on a grand scale.

    Sure, the government could embark on massive building programs, but it would have to do it by printing massive amounts of money, a practice which some say is already pushing our economy toward collapse.

    Continuing the discussion on those Halliburton camps (the number and locations of which  have not yet been revealed), it will be for 'enemies of the state', plain and simple. The government has the power to define that term any way it chooses.  This gulag will probably be rolled in with the 'War on Terror'.  Anybody who openly protests government actions once de facto marshall law has been declared will be determined to be aiding and abetting terrorist and therefore by definition also a terrorist and thus ineligible for due process.

    One poster on a previous thread expressed doubt about the government's ability to imprison millions of its own people, offering the reason that 'who is going to be watching all these people?' My response would be in the form of another question: 'How were Hilter and Stalin able to permanently imprison millions of their own people?  I wouldn't be surprised in this Halliburton gulag will be operated as for-profit businesses by the likes of Blackwell, Pinkerton, et al. People who can't find jobs can always become a prison guard.

    For-profit prisons .....  one of the few industries in the US with a bright future.

    Ah yes, and we know what happens when you put normal, ordinary  people in the roles of prison guards, and others (the disenfranchised) in the roles of prisoners....
    Speaking of prisoners, if there is a depression and you have large numbers of honest hard working ordinary citizens who have lost their jobs, their house, car and good life, can you justify supplying criminals with nice warm surroundings and 3 square meals a day while the unemployed workers and their familys are cold hungry and homeless?
    And if not, what do you do with the prisoners?

    Speaking of prisoners, if there is a depression and you have large numbers of honest hard working ordinary citizens who have lost their jobs, their house, car and good life, can you justify supplying criminals with nice warm surroundings and 3 square meals a day while the unemployed workers and their familys are cold hungry and homeless?

    Yes becouse otherwise the justice system would become too grim and not worthy a democratic state with free citizens. If the state removes every opportunity for someone to support himself it has to provide what is needed to survive.
    Having somone starve in captivity is much worse then starvation in freedom.

    I even hold it for a given that the laws should be the same both for inmates and free citizens but if one inmate for instance beats another I would be content with something much quicker and cheaper then a full trial.

    The correct solution is to give families in hardship warm surroundings and three square meals a day. If you absolutely must choose who is to live there is only one thing left to do, release the prisoners and give the emergency aid where it can do the most for peoples ability to create a future.


    There is not going to be any kind of hungry citizens or things like that. If you believe that, my advice would be to reread your econ 101 books, or if you insist, to find the average doomer site for people who don't understand basic economics on the Big Internet.

    I see you're from Europe.  Maybe it's different over there.  Here in the U.S., we have hungry citizens now.  
    We also have alot of overweight people too.  I figured PO might be good for our waists, and leave some energy to help in other areas.  Obviously everyone will not have the same access.
    They go to work on the Cargill plantation like the rest of us.  If they want to eat...
    That poster was me.

    And I still have much to doubt about the ability of even Our gov't or another Hitler-Like gov't to put Millions of people in camps anywhere in this country.

    The shear scope of it is just not something I
     can see happening.

    I am not saying this out of disbelief that it could happen to a great place like the grand old US of A. BUt because I can't see the gov't having the money and the secret ability to build camps to house millions or even just a 100,000 thousand rabble rousers..

    Have any of you prepared food enough to feed 500 people?

    I have.  My Dad and I did all the cooking, and served 500 people a meal, and we did it more than just once. 50 to 500 people every wednesday night for 3 years.  The ability to feed 100,000 people will take a lot of effort.  Look at any prison in the USA and you will know how farfetched your camps become.

    If it were to happen,  the guys in charge will have to be willing to kill a lot of people to passify the rest, which never really happens no matter whose college text book you happen to read would like to tell you.

    I want proof of a building site,  give a region, a state a county you think they are building them in and I'll find a sat image and look at to check it out.  Do not just make blanket statements about housing 10 guys to 10 million guys in gulags and expect me to see it as anything but another conspricacy theory of yours.

    Thank You.

    Dan Ur -

    I'm not saying the gov is definitely planning to incarcerate millions of people: what I am saying is that they appear to be slowing but steadily developing the ability to track and detain very large numbers of people, all without due process. It is this ability that really worries me. It's my contention that if a power can be abused, sooner or later it will be abused.

    What IS a verifiable fact is that Haliburton has been given a $485 million contract to build an undisclosed number of detention facilities in multiple undisclosed locations. Obstensibly, these are for a possible large influx of illegal immigants, and for 'other contingencies'.  I'm sure that once construction has actually started on these facilities(very likely on the site of existing military installations rather than green field projects), word will slowly leak out as to their whereabouts, and you can then check your satellite finder and see what there is to be seen.  (What would there be to see except a bunch of barracks-like buildings?)

    Yes, it is a big job to feed and house large numbers of prisoners. That is why for-profit prisons are a big business employing a large number of people.

    However, please keep in mind that it wasn't all that difficult rounding up thousands of Japanese-Americans following Pearl Harbor and putting them into hastily built detention camps. Where there's a will, there's always way.  No doubt, if we both were alive in early 1941, and I commented that in the event of war the gov will probably round up all the Japanese-Americans in the US and put them into detention camps, you would probably have called me a conspiracy nut :-)

    Mind  you, I am not saying this WILL happen, but if the shit hits the fan in a big way (for whatever reason), the gov has the means, motive, and opportunity to do just that.

    The issues are:
    1. Since Halliburton won the no bid contract to build camps in the US and abroad is it possible that the government intends to use them?

    2. If the government intends to use these camps then who shall be the campers?

    3. War requires an enemy. The US is terminally unique in that it appears to be the only country that makes enemies of plants & fighting strajities. Hence the still in progress "War on Drugs" and now the all encompassing "War on Terror". The fight in the War on Obesity is still going strong and don't forget the War on AIDS. Once you go to war against a plant or chemical or disease or combat style the people that can be shot in this war are numerous. She was a victim in the War on Tampons. He was a victim in the War on Cat Litter. Once you start a war like the War on Drugs it never ends. You must ask yourself, how long has the US Government been fighting the War on Drugs.

    4. To demonize someone you start with a label. For instance I will demonize an Arab person so you can see how this works. "He was sort of dark and looked like an Arab", "I'll bet it was a towel head that did it", "Those sand n*gg*rs are all terrorists!" So if I was into putting people in detention camps all I need are some labels.

    5. Another way to get people into camps in mass is to start your very own terror attack. They will all look similar to a deer standing on the road at night as you slam into it. The government becomes the trusted party that offers safety.

    6. Have a bird flu epidemic and institute a state by state quarantine for it. Before you do though be sure to have the president say that he will most likely need to declare Marshall Law in such an event on the TV & news.

    None of these even need to be real folks. Any event real or otherwise can be used and most of us are already trained to respond like Pavlov's Dog. Imagine if the Bird-Flu comes and is real. Many will die and for a while you can expect various attempts at quarantines.

    All any would be controlling party needs in order to acquire unconditional support are the following things. They first need a lie. It must be a lie that is so great that it would be impossible for the masses to see it for a lie at all. Next the people need a leader with charisma who offers a determined solution. Finally they want resolve and it only partially happens. It becomes likely that this can be repeated over and over till there is nothing left.

    The plan above worked for Hitler and Goebbels. Now will the same plan work if done 60 years later? Do you want to take that chance?


    First of all, I think it important to consider the future in terms of peak resources, not just peak oil, coupled with an exponetially growing population. And, to make SS happy, let's include global warming.

    In truth, there are a large number of people who don't trust anyone.  You just don't see them posting these topics on TOD and similar forums/blogs.  I'll use myself as an example.  I'm a real doomer who has spent a lot of time and money becoming as self-sufficent as I can be (and that's far from perfect).  I'm not interested in debating or arguing with people who don't even have a solar water heater muchless the ability to grow their own food.  I live in a different reality than urban or suburban people and even many rural people.  Further, because of my reality, I know the pitfalls of collapse that others have no concept of.  

    But, I have no interest in trumpting this here.  Why?  Because I can go to other forums and blogs and discuss these issues with people who share my reality.  For example, how many TOD members are actually ready to convert their petroleum fueled motors to wood gas as I am?  How many here would want to discuss whether a Glock is better than a Rock Island M1911? How many even know what that last sentance is about?

    Lastly, it seems that most people do not want to take the time and make the effort to ferret out information that conflicts with their meme muchless dump closely held beliefs?  

    I know this doesn't really address your question but it's the best I can do.

    For a peek at this other world, review the archives of

    Renewable energy is growing "exponentially".  Why do you not think that this will continue until the world runs off of it?  The peak in oil production per world capita was in the 1970s.
    Renewable energy is currently a drop in the bucket and exponential growth won't be enough to replace current energy sources in a timely manner as they decline.  It will take new societal, economic, governance and population paradigms.  

    Further, I am not at all sure that AE can be financed given current indebtedness levels.  The ROI is low for many alternatives so I don't anticipate businesses jumping into the breach to the extent necessary without government financial incentives.  Nor do I anticipate individuals installing their own systems when they are currently in hock up to their eyeballs.  For example, I have over $40k in my 3.6kW PV system (which includes a large battery bank).  And, how many are going to install solar hot water systems?  I've had one for over 20 years.  In fact, I put in my first, little PV system at the same time.

    AE will certainly contribute but it is only part of the answer and it will unlikely be able to maintain the status quo, consumer society.

    I've posted this quote elsewhere, but again, "The southwest region of the United States is ideally suited for this [Concentrated Solar Power]. In fact, a solar farm 100 miles by 100 miles could satisfy 100% of the America's annual electrical needs." (from www.stirlingenergy.com) Separately a calculation can be made to show that the cost of this implementation would be about $688 billion, which is large but not impossible.

    Further there are arguments for scaling up wind power (see posts by Nick).

    And even further, I went to a talk just yesterday by a Fusion Physicist who explained that there are few issues limiting the increase of this technology, which would provide unlimited electrical energy.  The first commercial scale unit will be built in France over the coming years.

    To be a doomer I must be able explain why each of these is not a solution.

    Actually, it's unneccssary to attack each and every approach.  Although this is possible, it's a waste of time.

    First, you are relying upon the "system" to solve a societal problem of immense proportions.  I'm 67, and during my life, I have never seen the system function cohesively as will/would be necessasry to accomplish what you obviously believe.  WWII comes close but is a poor example for a variety of reasons that aren't germane.

    Second, the money will not be there because of current indebtedness and underfunded programs like SS/Medicare and goverment/military pensions.  There is a also a dubious assumption that the economy will keep buzzing along forever.

    Further, costs will have escalated significantly by the time any serious work starts.  I believe they will have escalated to the point where even minor proposals will be impossible to fund.  The only exception I can think of is CTL projects in the naive belief that they will buy time.

    Third, even were the first two issues discounted, none of these approaches can be accomplished in a timely manner.  The Hirsch report makes that abundantly clear.

    Let's look at the vast majority of US residents:  Can they produce any of their own power?  No.  Do they have solar hot water systems?  No.  Can they provide fuel to heat their houses?  No.  Can they provide their own water?  No.  Can they produce a significant proportion of their food?  No.  Do they live in energy efficient houses or houses with at least some solar heating/cooling?  No.  Can they provide their own transportation fuel?  No.  Can they provide any of their clothing?  No.  But, unless all things are done in a timely manner, the systems they rely upon for their very survival will begin to fail and, IMO, cascading cross failures will also begin.  The end result will not be nice.

    OK, no debate on each item. I don't "believe" anything. I am looking for actual numbers on specific projects, etc, etc. I'm not looking for a "system" solution, rather the natural transition to more cost effective solutions as they come into existence.

    Re debt. The US had a Federal outstanding debt to GDP ratio of more than 60% in the 1950s. It is less than 40% now. Federal outlays as a percentage of GDP were more than 20% from around 1980 to around 1997 (that's about 18 consecutive years). Those outlays are currently less than 20%. So we have room to grow this.

    We in the US waste an enormous amount of liquid fuels doing things like going on vacation, attending sports events, recreational boating, etc. If need be, a lot of time can gained by the "voluntary" reduction in these activities. This would mean a bad recession, but that's hardly a paradigm shift.

    What a fine post, Todd.

    Let me try another approach to this. I'll use my wife's aunt as an example. If she's the typical American, then she drives about 15,000 miles per year. Once a year she takes a trip to a South Carolina beach from Indiana (750 miles each way, for a total of 1500 miles roundtrip). If she were to cut out that 1 trip, her annual petrol consumption would fall by 10%. That's a big savings without her "lifestyle" changing very much. A week at an Indiana "day spa" might be just as relaxing.

    My point is that if you add up all the frenzied driving around that people do for sports, vacations, and entertainment -- the amount of "mitigation" that the US can achieve is enormous. I don't think you should be talking about heating homes, food, and clothing until (at least) the sports collesium, vacation, and entertainment industries are in the tank. I just don't think that we go from gluttony to starvation in one step -- we'll "diet" first.

    Yes. I am somewhat skeptical of the VMT link to GDP considering so many of the miles are wasted. How is driving aimlessly creating wealth?
    And even further, I went to a talk just yesterday by a Fusion Physicist who explained that there are few issues limiting the increase of this technology, which would provide unlimited electrical energy.  The first commercial scale unit will be built in France over the coming years.

    Try 20 years for ITER to be operational and then we still don't know if it will work.

    Even if it did work what will we gain? Will we spend untold billions for ITER only to find out that it
    http://www.iter.org/Movies/RandDfilmfull.avi (R-Click & Save AS) is a POS? Here we see all the big players doing there part in what only can be defined as, "A Bruce Willis Mission to save the Earth!"

    I'm not going to agree that fusion will be bad or cause the population to rise even more. The main issue is that it is at best 20 years away. I can loose my job today and we can be in camps by tomorrow. I would imagine that the Earth would have been depopulated as the UN wants down to 20% by that time. Future generations will be sterilized for the most part.

    I have read very little about fusion in a long time. I had no idea that it had progressed so much (the speaker was a physicist who had worked on the Princeton fusion reactor). The jist of the story was this:
  • (1) fusion research was started indepedently by the US and Russia in a search to find better ways to bomb each other
  • (2) lots of time and energy was wasted with "toroid" designs
  • (3) the two sides eventually got working together
  • (4) supercomputers were created that allowed the physicists to discover the best ways to shape the plasma field (a toroid is apparently one of the worst shapes
  • (5) a commercial scale fusion reactor has been designed for years
  • (6) almost neverending negotiations happened over where to build the thing (technical issues are not the problem, and funding is not a problem)

    Why then do you think fusion is 20 years away?

  • I am a fusion researcher, involved, at least peripherally with ITER. ITER's first plasma will occur in about 15 years, if everything goes according to schedule. ITER will not produce electricity but wil hopefully point the way to a DEMO reactor that will, in additional 10-15 years. Fusion offers some attractive options for power 30-50 years from now, but it is not going to avert the issues discussed here. Our capability to fund capitally intense projects may well collapse before we can take advantage of any results from ITER.

    By the way fusion research is a relatively modest program in the US. Funding for nuclear physics is 30% greater, particle physics gets almost 3 times as much and Nasa's budget is at least 16 times greater. A much larger effort is needed near term on all the options discussed here to give us a chance to get to a future where fusion  might have advantages to offer. IMO fusion isn't really germain to the discussion here of how we get through the prospect diminshing liquid fuels in our near future.


    first plasma will occur in about 15 years
    According to the ITER website, first plasma will be in 2016 -- that's only 10 years.
    There are a few problems with your 2016 date...

    1. That is 4 years after the Mayan calendar runs out.
    2. They have not yet been able to obtain a self sustained fusion reaction (at least one that broke even in EROEI).
    3. INTER is a demo reactor to see if it can be done.
    4. Reread that 3rd one and remember to see if it can.
    5. I'm not sure what site I read this on but there were issues between France and Japan and we are looking at 2026 all said and done if it works at all.
    The mayan calender.  Predicting the future(?) or did someone realize that it was a waste of time to write dates that they wouldn't be alive to see when there was more important things to do like grow food, have sex, and what not.  I mean really after a while it gets pretty boring. 110,111,112,etc.  It's like so many cave paintings and these people who look at them like they are messages for us to interpet.  I think they are nothing more than graffitti(sp)  "dorg shoots 5 deer" "moog shoots like a girl"  I mean get real unless we were there watching these things being written, carved, painted we don't know what they had in mind.  I think the analysis of cave painting is about as useful as sports commentators.  Turn the sound off and enjoy the game I always say.  Should they be preserved?  Of course - there usefulness I highly question.  Does anyone think the graffitti on trains means this is what or life is like ?
    There are a lot of detailed and striking similarities in all the cave paintings found throughout the world. Read Supernatural and you'll get a thoroughly studied clue what they had in mind. Didn't find a reference to train graffiti though ;)
    It's not me that thinks its going to be 20 years for starters the people at ITER state that their reactor in France will not be complete till 2025 or something like that.

    If you read France secured that location over others for the ITER project. They happen to have achieved a short duration fusion reaction using the torrid design and intend to go forward with it.

    If you follow close enough the Super (Best Friends) Powers from US to France are all involved with this so far 10 Billion Dollar project. Like I said they intend to save mankind with Fusion. One good way to find out about fusion is to stare at the sun for long hours. Another way is to search for "fusion reactors" in Google.

    I couldn't get the AVI to play video -- just music. The video needs to be "fused" to the music.
    That video uses the 3ivx codec available here http://www.3ivx.com/download/
    Here: http://www.iter.org/   is the ITER site link. The videos are sort of Star-Trek like so you should get and use the codec.
    You can watch some fusion plasma doing its thing a few times. Then you get to watch phases of them constructing this monster. The bummer thing about this is that should it work and be the electric dream it is so far away time wise that it is only a fantasy.
    Say we cover your 100 by 100 mile square. That is 10,000 Square miles or 6,400,000 Acres or 278,784,000,000 Square feet of Land area.   Now for the sake of this thought puzzle we could say this as well.  WE need a bit over 929 Square feet of PV this CSP you speak of PER person in the USA ( pop Aprox 300,000,000 ).  Now given that the above hunk of land is not going to be totally used I'll cut it in half or shall we go and only use a thrid of the area,  300 to 460 Square feet of Solar energy collection per Person at current usage levels.

     BIG Ass Projects from Hell contractors,  will get you all the power you need just sign at the dotted line.

    We at TOD have read the numbers before, but it looks great as a techno fix on paper, but when you start plugging in the numbers your calculator melts down.

    We each have to make a change.  Simple, Change.

    Remember that every little bit helps and keep preaching the change for your own good.  Not everyone will change.  I am a Christian, I recycle, I cook my own meals from scratch, I drive very little, I walk.  I know that I can't Change you in any way, but I can show you how I live.  My actions will speak louder than my words anyway.

    My advice to folks just finding out about the issues involved, read, do a bit of habit changing and keep on.  

    calculator melts down
    Mine does not. Here is my complete calculation: CSP calculation This type of ballpark calculation has obviouly been done by lots of people in the energy development arena.
    BIG Ass Projects from Hell contractors
    SAIC and Boeing do BAPFH all the time.

    The beauty of this CSP technology is that it is very scalable. SES is starting with a 500MW site. If all goes well then they can scale up. I don't think that they would be doing this "world's largest solar energy project" if they thought it wasn't ready for primetime.

    To be a doomer I must be able explain why each of these is not a solution...

    I'm not a doomer, but you have to be explain why each of these is actually a viable system, that can be built and deployed in a timely fashion. The 10,000 square mile solar farm is a nice thought, but some questions come to mind after browsing through the Web site: (a) It's shut down at night, implying enormous storage capacity is needed. (b) It's all in the desert SW (or the required area becomes MUCH larger) and much of the demand is along the East Coast, how do you move that much power that far. (c) Current US generating capacity is just over a million MW (nameplate), the $688B figure implies <$700/kW capital costs, which is cheaper than any other technology available today (so may be accurate, but at least raises suspicion).

    According to the EIA, the million MW current capacity runs at >90% capacity.  Assume that wind runs at 30% capacity. Replacing 25% of current capacity with 2.5 MW wind generators requires 300,000 windmills. It's probably doable, but over what time frame?

    Gen IV fission reactors are not expected to be available before 2020, and possibly not until 2030, and IIRC, all of the schemes on the approved list for that have at least been used in working research reactors that demonstrated the concept. The fusion people -- and I wish them all the success in the world -- have yet to demonstrate a sustained reaction that yields more collectable energy than is put into it.

    The time frame issue might be tough.  About 18% of current capacity is gas-fired and the fuel is getting more and more expensive.  About 20% is nuclear and all of the licenses for those are scheduled to expire over the next 25 years.  Conservation and renewables need to scale up quickly, or a lot of coal-fired capacity is likely to be built...

    shut down at night, implying enormous storage capacity is needed
    I've been looking into this. The experimental fusion reactor at Princeton is apparently powered by a huge flywheel storage device. The physicist speaking the other day said that the flywheel is "spun up" (terminology here?) over several weeks and then suddenly tapped to run fusion experiments -- the NE electrical grid would crash if tapped directly.

    There is a company called Beacon Power that has made "utility grade" flywheel energy storage devices for grid regulation. It would seem simple to apply these same types of storage devices to CSP grid applications -- i.e. the Princeton flywheel stores megawatts of energy.

    The Princeton flywheel can deliver short bursts of very high energy.  It cannot provide hours worth of power.

    The cheapest way to store electricity is via pumped storage with a transmission line to it except tin special circumstances.

    Beacon Power has a single 3000lb unit (made from a re-cycled SUV I'm sure) that can deliver 50kW for 30 minutes. This appears scalable to meet time-demand.

    Of course, there may be other better storage technologies.

    Check out "flow batteries" as well. They are as big as 4MW if not 8MW, IIRC.
    For example, how many TOD members are actually ready to convert their petroleum fueled motors to wood gas as I am?

    I hope not very many. If we all just startd cooking with wood, the world's forest would be stripped clean in just a few years. And if we all started heating with wood also? Now you are running all your internal combustion engines on wood. Heaven help us if that catches on. The world would become a desert in only a few months.

    I'm afraid you do not 'get' what is being said here.
    Todd is not altogether concerned with what "everyone" (we all) will or will not do. Basically, he is concerned with what he, and a few well prepared and well informed people who share a similar mindset will do.  
    Todd is what many would call a "survivalist". He is preparing for TEOTWAWKI.
    There is no personal judgement (by me) implied from this fact or assessment, of which I neither advocate nor oppose, and I do not presume to speak for Todd, whom I respect, but basically the core of this viewpoint is pragmatic, i.e. what can I do to help me and my family/social group adapt better and be better prepared to face the challenges that clearly lie ahead? The Titanic is just feet from the iceberg now, and there is not enough room in the lifeboats, so only some can be saved. Why waste time and energy arguing with those who will not even acknowledge the presence of the iceberg?

    Todd, I wish I were as prepared as you.  Then again, perhaps I am slightly more optimistic about our future.
    As a side note, the Rock Island Arsenal 1911 an entry level gun, not really up to Glock standards. Save your money and get a Springfield, Colt, or Kimber instead.

    No, I think I fully understand what Todd is saying. And I agree that what Todd is doing is what EVERYONE will be doing when oil is no longer available to the masses at prices they can afford.

    A few years ago when thousands of Rwandans fled to the jungles of the Democratic of the Congo to escape the civil war there, the people were starving. Massive amounts of food aid was delivered to them by UN aid agencies. But they had no way to cook the food. They cut down the forest. The area looked like a desert after only a few months.

    Just using wood for cooking would, after a few years, strip the world of its forest. Using wood for heating would do it a bit sooner. But using wood to power cars and trucks would be to commit suicide on a massive scale. It would be the height of absurdity to do anything that would give the world the idea that wood is a good motor vehicle fuel.

    I fully realize that Todd is looking out for Todd and no one else. But the point is everyone on earth will be trying to save their own ass when the shit hits the fan. If this technology is available, converting wood to gas, then everyone will be doing it. To use a biblical term, "we would destroy everything that breatheth".

    Bottom line, when everyone, including Todd, begins to use the forest for fuel for cooking, heating and transportation, that will indeed be TEOTWAWKI.  

    Agreed. And therein lies the basic problem with "every man for himself". In the ensuing chaos, little will be left.

    Despite living on several acres of wooded land, I do not own sufficient wood resources to effectively heat my home or operate an I.C. engine off of wood gas for any length of time. Nor would I try to.

    The reason these are issues is that human population is many orders of magnitude larger than the planet's carrying-capacity. Having intelligence, we have the option to reduce our numbers rapidly through voluntary drastic reductions in reproduction. That is the humane way. I will not breed.
    All stands that we take lead to ruin. Way back when in England they had Peak Wood. If not for coal England would have ended. Scale the wood fuel thing up and we get to a fuzzy place. Odds are fuel competition no matter what the fuel will lead to murder.

    The major issue here is that anarchy will allow for redistribution of power and wealth but will not stand aside so that a government can be formed. In fact any other government other then the current government will allow for the redistribution of power and wealth. The goal of the current government is to divide the general population and do it with fear.

    So enter fear to the picture, the greatest tool of the group thinker. Since 9-11 and our less then decisive response to it many have been quaking in their shoes. All things being related we are called to rationalize things like war. TOD is based partly on groupthink.

    That is correct I say in my belief that group-think is a power that inflicts this very site. I can say anything here but it is common for members to defend the government or financial institutions. It is common to get to the most destructive of possibilities in a few short posts. We can be over optimistic and believe the government has its finger on the pulse. The others feel that it would be impossible for the government to know where to find the pulse.

    I say I'm the pulse and so are the rest of you. Those that are survivalists are us and we. Those that are parents are part of us and we. Has the world ever had 6.6 Billion people and depleting energy before (tic tock) NO.? So how do we know for certain that this EOTW is THE EOTW? At some point we have to resolve this and the time is here. We need direction, actual direction not some biblical prophecy.

    Why don't ideas like the one that I had fly for you? Your alive now and can adapt to lesser energy situations. What is wrong with eliminating money, stocks, bonds, credit cards and the rest? Think of how good you will feel knowing that you just messed up some land barons day!

    Those that can not believe that we could be caged by the government apparently never read. They would know of all the times that the US caged some folks for the greater good. I will leave that up to you but you can start with the American Indians and go from there till you wind up with water boarding in GITMO. Is that how you want to go out?

    It's time for Todd to speak up - and fallout you did a pretty good job.

    In fact, I started on my path in the late 1960's when I was a process development manager (chemicals). I was close enough to the top to know with a certainty that there was no such thing as "security" and that giving full trust to others was often a bad idea.

    Further, I was very affected by how the Depression dragged people under.  My dad's father lost his business and went from lower upper class to upper poor.  I swore it would never happen to me.  This might be nit picking but I am not a survivalist in the old sense of the word but I'm sure as heck going to be a survivor.

    I eventually asked myself why I was doing what I was doing.  By the time I became a plant manager in 1972, I had already purchased land in the boondocks, had submitted plans for a house and was all set to go, which I did.

    Moving on to today:  First, I really have all this stuff I mention on posts. I've also been doing what I post about for over 30 years.  I grew up in the country and love the boondocks - plus I have done all the big city stuff (NYC, Phila, DC, SF, Cleveland(?) - heck I even had a house in a yatch basin where we could dock in the front yard) but I didn't need/want that life anymore.

    There are four families on our private mountain road.  The land and resources we have will support 8-10 adults, period.  We have a "Plan B" although it represents mostly my ideas.  It will be modified as conditions change.  So, I'm not just looking out for myself.

    A legitimate question is whether we can live self-sufficiently.  The answer is yes but...it would really, really be hard and I think some of the people would move to the "camps" rather than do what it will take.  A further question always comes up, "What about the roving gangs?"  Yes, we do have a defense plan.  Could we keep an armed mob out?"  10 or so people, probably.  More, no.  There are a LOT of moral issues that I hope I never have to confront.

    To illustrate the seriousness with which I take all this, I had to replace the roof on our rental house two years ago.  From a landlord's perspective, the cheapest way would be to simply replace the asphalt shingles.  Instead, I put on (that is, I installed the roof myself - I also designed and built our house and a number of others: skills are another issue related to survival) a high quality metal roof but also added a layer of rigid insulation to bring the roof up to R-35.

    That's enough running on for now.  I'm tired after spending the afternoon thinning apples and pears.

    Even in the worst case scenario, the choice is not between your life and a Haliburton concentration camp. The logical choice would be to leave (which sadly is incomprehensible to many Americans).
    Anthropology teaches us than when faced with a crisis or dramatic change, mankind has only three avenues to pursue:
    1. Adapt
    2. Relocate
    3. Cease to exist

    In a global crisis, where could you go?  
    I guess it would depend on the circumstances. I was just reminding people that a USA which has collapsed into a Mad Max scenario complete with Haliburton concentration camps does not preclude the possibility of a better life elsewhere. Just like for German Jews in the 1930s,psychological and physical mobility is sometimes very important.
    My pleasure, Todd.  I commend you on your planning and preparation, and do hope you will continue to post here from time to time. That is the one nice thing about TOD, there is such a wide range of viewpoints and perspectives here.
    Hi Todd,
    You are correct I need to drop PO since it does not completely reflect the truth. I should discuss carrying capacity more and remember to use "peak everything" or "peak resources" when discussing topics like this. Most of the time I use "Resource Depletion" though for some reason I have started using PO.

    I think for our purposes here you can assume that when I say PO I really mean RD since I feel that the peak has passed for all things.

    I would like to thank those of you who have posted on this subject. I can only hope that more members comment on this post. I do know the difference between a 9mm and a 45acp. My hope is that the citizens can choose the correct path to walk rather than go to the mats.

    I'm hoping that this thread will let other members know that they are not alone. I wonder how many people's lives have become surreal since 9-11. What do supporters of the Iraq War believe is going to be the result? What do those that long for lasting peace expect to happen as a result of PO and diminishing returns?

    To me your replies are important. Help us understand your point of view as well. At times I have flipped sides on this issue myself. In my mind I picture the unarmed citizen against the armed soldier and seldom can I get him to pull the trigger. After watching a few Iraq videos of young soldiers shooting and killing a wounded Iraq (something), his comment of, "That was pretty cool!" seems to blow the old our guys would never do that away.

    Videos like that are so telling. It would be easy to use video game warfare here at home. The enemy is so far away and they don't even suspect a thing. Think about the speed and ease that you could be relocated for any reason. I don't even have to give you a scenario. It is a fact that all over the country the military has been practicing just such actions.

    For those that believe or suspect Halliburton Camps are for the US as in we please explain. More then that, regardless of camps yes/no idea, what do you believe the actual tripwire to be, for having outward military dominance in a town near you?

    I generally think I would be flattering myself to think that anyone would waste on me any of the precious few bullets that will remain in a couple of years.
    Anyone with bullets in 2008 will be using them to shoot food animals, and I will not look all that tasty.
    Ever seen 'Quest for Fire'?
    The World After a Petrocollapse

    The first given is that a collapse will strike hardest at Third World nations. This seems counterintuitive as many cultures still do not have fertilized, mechanized agricultural systems. They seem less exposed to the collapse of modernity. However, in any crisis, the poor fall first, while the rich continue to take the lion's share of resources. During the Irish Potato Famine, Ireland was a net exporter of food even as a million and a half Irish died of starvation and several million more emigrated. First World nations will likely use their greater wealth and military power to keep themselves fed and in relatively better position than the poorer nations of the world.

    Similarly First World cities will place enormous pressure on underpopulated, but food-producing regions of their own countries. Unless and until governments completely collapse, the city-dwellers will likely receive at least enough food to survive. During the artificially-induced famines in the Soviet Union and China in the 1930s and 1950s, respectively, food-producing rural areas starved before the cities.

    The other advantage that cities will have is that most of the major cities are located on rivers, bays, or other waterways, a relic of the days when water was used to move the majority of goods. Cities such as New York, Seattle, New Orleans, and hundreds of smaller towns and cities will continue to enjoy these strategic locations long after a complete petroleum collapse. They may not be able to support millions of people, but they will still maintain relative power and prestige vis a vis the hinterland.

    The exception will be thoroughly modern cities like Phoenix and Las Vegas. Not only will they be too hot to function for large portions of the year without cheap electricity to power air conditioning, but they are water poor. Las Vegas, especially, is dependent upon modern, cheap-fuel tourism. In a collapse it would become a ghost town. If the collapse is sudden enough, virtually everyone in the city would either die or become a desperate refugee elsewhere.

    Las Vegas is dependent on cheap hydroelectric power and water from the Colorado River, and it sits astride the transmission routes to southern California. And people's vices are the last thing to go in an economic collapse. There was plenty of whiskey, prostitution and gambling amoung those who could least afford it during the Great Depression in America.
      I'm with Kunstler on this one. Suburbia is likely to go first .
      Here in Galveston County, Texas certain towns are the far suburbs of Houston. The housing market is showing the first signs of a collapse-a much higher foreclosure rate and for sale signs on numerous SUV's and light trucks. People have overextended themselves with mortgages on giant McMansions plus huge payments on Cadilac Escalades, Hummers and monster trucks. Builders have cut prices on brand new McMansions which has the side effect of making people's equity disappear because no one has equity on a home that can be purchased brand new for less than the amount owed on the older home. The three $100 tanks of gas a week for each     of the beasts in the driveway, and electric utility bills have tripled around the Houston area in the last three years. It takes two professional incomes to support the lifesyle, and if one partner gets sick, or their high paid IT job gets outsourced, or there is a divorce the whole house of cards collapses. And when that happens enough credit dries up for the whole neighborhood and houses are abandoned. Pretty soon people will invite their neighbors to a barbeque where they will become the piece de resistance.  
    He goes on to say,

    Many of the suburbs
    will eventually revert to farmland, but only after millions of homes either burn or are torn down and
    the population of these areas shrinks drastically.

    I want to know how you tear down the acres and acres of meandering suburban streets and cul-du-sacs. How much time and energy is required to turn a maze of asphalt back into farmland?

    You know things come down far easier than it does to build them.  You've put a puzzle together before....
    East St Louis (IL) is well on its way...
    It's not that easy. The underlying soil often is scraped away to level the building plot to be able to lay down piping etc. more easily. Not to mention any gravel or cement or other paving residues. Even the lawns are biologically poor and often poisoned with pesticides.
    Absolutely correct.  Compacted, poisoned soils, at least what's left.  Often they sell the topsoil and just hydroweed the crap that's left, then keep it growing with chemicals and fertilizer and watering.  Then there are septic systems and other junk in the ground too.  Making such a area farmable again would be a major effort.
    A major effort is what it's going to take.
    Yes, but a major effort without cheap energy inputs is a monumental effort.  You'd need massive amounts of slave labor.....
    "BP's Browne predicts oil price fall"  


    Peanut-gallery please make supporting and opposing arguments. Okay... ready, set, GO!

    No really, I don't understand--all these cornucopian-skewed articles say

    1. Tar Sands [doesn't scale]
    2. Still more oil out there, still finding lots of oil [hasn't global discovery peaked long ago?]
    3. and then there is always the contention .. ah fuck it...

     go at it people, joke about how a company named "beyond petroleum" isn't investing much in "unconventional oil".
    Pfff.. It's not even worth the effort responding! He's obviously talking to BP's shareholders. The only way oil could come back around $40 is a major economic depression that would contract oil demand significantly.
    I think he is saying that any windfall profits are temporary so there is no need for any ill-advised guv regulation concerning oil companies.
    This makes sense.
    In discussion on TODUK:

    And yet:
    ''Oil supply to peak sooner than we think, says BP scientist
    Richard Orange
    November 07, 2004 6:00 AM (GMT)

    WORLD oil production is likely to peak in the next decade, much earlier than many international forecasts, a senior BP executive has told The Business.
    BP exploration consultant Francis Harper said he estimated the world's total original usable oil resources - the amount of oil before drilling began - at about 2.4 trillion barrels of oil. This is considerably less than the 3 trillion assumed by bullish commentators such as the US government's Geological Survey. This points to oil production peaking between 2010 and 2020.
    His comments are a rare entry by a global oil company into the debate on the life of global oil supplies. If true, it would mean demand outstripping supply much earlier than energy projections by ExxonMobil and Shell. BP does not officially supply projections.
    The International Energy Agency, the industry watchdog, expects oil demand to continue to rise until 2030. It assumes production will rise to meet demand.
    Harper will argue at a London conference this week that production would start to slow in non-Opec members, concentrating the cartel's power.
    He said: "When the world peaks isn't the critical thing. What's more salient is when non-Opec oil peaks, then you'll have the control of marginal production passed back to a progressively smaller group of countries."
    He added that oil companies' public positions on the issue masked debate within them. "There are people in BP who happen to be economists and so happen to think there's no problem, and there are people in BP who are geologists who are saying it's getting hard to find."
    Harper's prediction is higher than the 2 trillion posited by doom-sayers like Colin Campbell. Harper said: "I'm more conservative than Exxon Mobil with regard to future oil resources, but I'm not Colin Campbell."
    Seth Kleinman at PFC Energy said oil companies had held back from such statements. "There's a certain degree of hesitancy for oil companies to go on the record and say, 'we are doing well with oil prices where they are now, but 10 years down the road things actually look pretty dire'."

    Repeated from within the text above:

    "There are people in BP who happen to be economists and so happen to think there's no problem, and there are people in BP who are geologists who are saying it's getting hard to find."

    [ Parent | Reply to This ]

    zceb90 on Monday June 12, 2006 at 9:51 AM EST

    CEO's don't normally want to spook the markets as they have lots tied up in company stock plans, market dependent pension funds etc.  If the likes of BP's CEO were actually to admit to PO it would surely lead to a widespread sell-off and, as we've seen in the recent worldwide falls, the stock prices of BP etc tend to follow the downward trend.
    Instead of following the words of CEO's I prefer to 'follow the money'.  BP plan to return $65bn to shareholders in form of stock buybacks and dividends over the next 3 years; this money is thus denied for funding exploration and new field development.  More specifically regarding one of the 'giant' fields in Caspian region here's what BP (and BG and Statoil) actually did:

    In the early nineties the Caspian seemed to be the next Middle East. In 2001 we had 20 out of 25 dry holes that dampened the enthusiasm for the Caspian significantly. In 2001 Kashagan was finally discovered, deemed to be the greatest field in the decade. In 2002 BP and Stat Oil quietly sold their 14% of Kashagan for 800 million dollars. In 2003 British Gas put their 17% on the block for 1.2 billion dollars. Which raises, in my opinion, the question, "What do these original parties know about the world's greatest field or do they merely want to spread the wealth?

    Above quote is from interview FTW / Simmons
    Some of the background behind BP's decision to exit is discussed here: Caspian Oil Myth

    If Caspian region really does hold the 200 Gbbls that Browne refers to why did BP reduce its presence in the area?

    [ Parent | Reply to This ]
    zceb90 on Monday June 12, 2006 at 10:08 AM EST
    Correction to above - Browne did not specifically mention '200 Gbbls' in recent Der Speigel interview but referred to "large new fields were still being discovered, in the vicinity of the Caspian Sea for example"

    Breaking news:

    Hurricane warning issued for Florida as Alberto strenthens

    National Hurricane Center issues hurricane warning for Florida's Gulf Coast from Longboat Key to the Ochlockonee River, The Associated Press reports.
    Leanan, you beat me to it!!
    Yesterday I watched the developments on TWC.  They kept saying "we don't expect it to gain tropical storm status".  All of a sudden it was "Tropical Storm Alberto".
    This morning I kept hearing "we don't expect it to reach hurricane status".  And now we have Hurricane Alberto, not quit officially yet, but probably before I finish typing this post...
    Here's an important point about weather forecasting:  The models forcasters use are based on past observations, among other factors of course, but observations of what happened in similar situations in the past are heavily weighted.  Of course every atmospheric situation is unique, but it is expected that weather systems today will behave something like they have in the past.  Sound reasonable.
    Enter global warming, climate change...
    As things change, the use of past weather behavior info becomes less useful - things turn out differently than they have in the past.  And ususlly for the worse, storms that should stay small gain strength more quickly than they should.  So, in a nutshell, weather forcasting becomes more difficult as the climate starts to shift, and things are generally worse than predicted.
    My region of the world, New England, has recieved well over 50% of our average annual rainfall in the past three weeks.  Not that you'd know that by watching the news or reading the local papers, I had to figure it out myself.  I guess they don't want to alarm anyone...
    Previous predictions had doubted that Alberto would strengthen. Just goes to show you that "predicition can be difficult, especially for the future"  ;o)
    I bet they just didn't want to say "boo!" until they were sure.  No one would want the first hurricane of the season to be a false alarm.
    Yesterday it had top winds of 35MPH.  There is still no development west of the center of circulation.  The storm is constantly being sheared off to the east.  Anyone who predicted yesterday that such a storm could develop into a Cat 1 in 36 hours would have been branded a fool.
    And yet, it's lookin' that way.  
    Remember Andrew?  First TS of '92?  When did that happen?  Mid August!!  Things have changed...
    How much things remain the same -

    'Hurricane Agnes was the first tropical storm and first hurricane of the 1972 Atlantic hurricane season. A rare June hurricane, it made landfall on Florida before moving northeastward and hitting New England as a tropical storm, with the worst damage occurring in parts of northeastern Pennsylvania and upstate New York. Agnes brought heavy rainfall along its path, killing 129 and causing $11.6 billion (2005 US dollars) in damage.'

    From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hurricane_Agnes

    A bit more information -

    'The large disturbance was first detected over the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico on June 14. The system drifted eastward and became a tropical depression later that day and a tropical storm over the northwestern Caribbean on the 16th. Agnes turned northward on June 17 and became a hurricane over the southeastern Gulf of Mexico the next day. A continued northward motion brought Agnes to the Florida Panhandle coast on June 19 as a Category 1 hurricane.'

    A certain number of broad similarities, hmm?

    1992 is so recent as to be meaningless in terms of climate, as is 1972, except to show that certain patterns can be seen - imagine 10,000 years of detailed information being useful for a brief glimpse into Earth's climate. And of course, humans are not doing much to keep long term information around - the amount of the first collected space data  already irretrievably lost is heartbreaking in its way. We probably aren't likely to do as well with any number of long term projects and problems as we believe.

    Continuing -

    'Agnes was barely a hurricane at landfall in Florida, and the effects of winds and storm surges were relatively minor. The major impact was over the northeastern United States, where Agnes combined with the non-tropical low to produce widespread rains of 6 to 12 inches with local amounts of 14 to 19 inches. These rains produced widespread severe flooding from Virginia northward to New York, with other flooding occurring over the western portions of the Carolinas. [citation needed]

    The worst flooding was along the Genesee River, the Canisteo River, and the Chemung Rivers in southwestern and southcentral New York. The latter two flowed into an already swollen Susquehanna River due to winter snow run off and flooding continued all the way down this river. The worst damage occurred in Elmira, New York and Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, but many other communities along the rivers suffered great losses. The Delaware River basin and the Potomac basins also had some flooding. So much fresh water was flushed into Chesapeake Bay that its seafood industry was badly damaged for several years.'

    An Agnes like event, however, is unlikely, since there was no late snowpack to contribute to the flooding.

    (And Wikipedia is at least a step for preservation of knowledge, keeping us in the race against yeast in measurable intelligence.)  

    I remember Agnes when I was a 9yr old kid in PA.  We had just moved into an old farmhose, and there were a bunch of old sump pumps in the basement.  I was helping my Dad fix and hook up old pumps to keep the water level in the basement down.  I remember it was quite impressive how much water there was.
    The updated AP article:

    Hurricane warning for Florida's west coast

    Tropical Storm Alberto, the first named storm of the 2006 Atlantic hurricane season, could become a Category 1 hurricane, the National Hurricane Center said Monday as it issued a hurricane warning for an area along Florida's northwest coast that includes Tampa.

    Alberto picked up speed Monday, going from 50 mph to 70 mph in just a few hours and surprising hurricane forecasters as it spun some 200 miles off Florida in the Gulf of Mexico. A storm becomes a hurricane when its sustained winds reach 74 mph.

    OK, looks like Alberto is calming down a little bit.  May not make Cat 1 now, I'll bet against it.  But the point remains that it should not have blown up like it did.  The warmer-than-normal waters (record warmth for this time of year??) are redefining what is "normal" behavior for a system like this.  I fear a very long and destructive hurricane season.  Could we all please wish real hard for a good El Nino (sorry Central America)?
    It's seems to have weaken, an inner wall  was starting to form but collapsed.

    Semi-permanent force to be stationed in Iraq.

    US 'planning to keep 50,000 troops in Iraq for many years'

    From the article:

    America plans to retain a garrison of 50,000 troops, one tenth of its entire army, in Iraq for years to come, according to US media reports.

    The revelation came as George W Bush summoned his top political, military and intelligence aides to a summit on Iraq's future today at the presidential retreat at Camp David.

    . . .

    Mr Bush said the meeting would decide "how to best deploy America's resources in Iraq and achieve our shared goal of an Iraq that can govern itself, sustain itself, and defend itself".

    But despite fierce domestic pressure to reduce troop levels before November's critical mid-term elections, there were growing signals that Gen George Casey, America's Iraq commander, may raise troop levels in the short-term.

    . . .

    American commanders are also worried by the situation in the Sunni areas at the heart of the insurgency, where American units have complained of a shortage of men.

    Mr Maliki pledged in a Washington Post article to confront the Shia militia, but his plan to "re-establish a state monopoly on weapons" could well generate a confrontation between ultra-religious gunmen and the fledgling Iraq security forces.

    America's military would be drawn into any defining battle over who rules Iraq.

    Gen Casey has already summoned his main reserve unit, a 3,500-man armoured brigade based in Kuwait and has alerted a Germany-based brigade that it may be needed soon.

    . . .

    Military planners have begun to assess the costs of keeping a 50,000-man force in Iraq for a protracted period of time. At present the total number of serving American troops is about 500,000.

    The plan has not yet received presidential approval. But it would fit with the administration's belief that while troops numbers will fall, American forces will have to remain in Iraq beyond Mr Bush's departure from the White House in early 2009.

    Military analysts have noted that significant American spending is already being committed to permanent bases in Iraq. They say Iraq's military may soon be able to fight by itself, but it cannot feed or supply itself and it has no air force to speak of.

    And who will be attending this strategy coven?

    The Camp David meeting will be attended by Dick Cheney, the vice-president, Donald Rumsfeld, the defence secretary, Condoleezza Rice, the secretary of state, John Negroponte, the director of national intelligence, Gen Michael Hayden, the CIA director and Gen Peter Pace, America's top soldier.

    The usual suspects.

    50,000 troops is a large number. Approximately three divisions with support elements. That's not counting elements stationed in the Gulf, Turkey, and Diego Garcia. By comparison, there are some 37,000 in South Korea, 58,000 in Japan, while some 70,000 are in Germany (though some are in rotation in Iraq).

    What is the geopolitical usefullness of having tens of thousands of troops in Germany and Japan? Do those countries  have good infrastructure for training, stockpiling and moving fairly long distances to conflict areas?
    Yes and no. Bases in these areas are leftovers from WWII and, while the Cold War led to the development of a vast amount of military infrastructure in these two countries. Japan is essentially an unsinkable aircraft carrier off of Northeast Asia, while Germany was the frontline fortress garrisoned to prevent any adventurism on the part of the Soviet Union.

    After the Cold War their location and infrastrucutre were simply too strategic to give up. Consolidate and downsize, yes, but giving them up entirely would give up way too many advantages. Our troops in essence keep the Europeans and Japanese dependent on us, which, from an imperial standpoint, is exactly what we want. Everyone fears what happens when Rome withdraws its legions, thus they put up with Ceaser's antics.

    This is why we maintain bases and garrisons in over 130 'sovereign countries' throughout the world.
    We are the New Rome. SPQR.
    Thanks for posting this.  I've been screaming for months about the insanity of all this talk about when the US is withdrawing from Iraq, with no discussion (at least until very recently) about the permanent bases, the world's largest embassy, etc.

    And it's not just the US bases in Iraq, but the presence in Afghanistan and the general Caspian Sea area.  The US will have a big bootprint in that part of the world for a long time--at least until the oil and NG are virtually gone.

    It's always been there.  There is even wiggle room in Murtha's definition of redeployment for this kind of thing.

    But it still might be a sort of "conventional hopeful thinking" that things would still work out well enough that those bases would be viable.

    What's funny is that no one compares our Baghdad embassy to what used to be the world's largest embassy complex -- the Soviet 'embassy' in East Germany.

    Iraq is and will continue to be a client state.

    Nothing new here.  Except now you know where all that money allocated to 'rebuild Iraq' actually went.

    14 `enduring bases' set in Iraq
    Long-term military presence planned
    Chicago Tribune March 23, 2004
    "From the ashes of abandoned Iraqi army bases, U.S. military engineers are overseeing the building of an enhanced system of American bases designed to last for years."

    "A year ago, President Bush boldly said: "Iraqis do not support an indefinite occupation and neither does America." Yet Congress is posed to finalize the president's $82 billion request for the Iraq war that includes a half-billion dollars for permanent military bases and another half-billion for building the world's largest embassy. Despite the president's assurances, the United States is preparing for a lengthy stay in Iraq."

    Iraq war bill deletes US military base prohibition
    By Richard Cowan
    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Congressional Republicans killed a provision in an Iraq war funding bill that would have put the United States on record against the permanent basing of U.S. military facilities in that country, a lawmaker and congressional aides said on Friday.
    http://today.reuters.com/news/newsArticle.aspx?type=politicsNews&storyID=2006-06-09T205941Z_01_N 09199214_RTRUKOC_0_US-SECURITY-CONGRESS-FUNDING.xml

    Extended presence of U.S. in Iraq looms large
    $1 billion for construction of American military bases and no public plans

    Out of Iraq....By 2055
    June 03, 2006
    For many months, at least since President George W. Bush announced that we would "stand down" in Iraq as quickly as the Iraqis "stand up", it has been a puzzle as to why we were building permanent military bases in Iraq if "standing down" meant, as most Americans assumed, getting out--withdrawing our troops.
    http://www.rawstory.com/showoutarticle.php?src=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.thewashingtonnote.com%2Farchives%2F0 01414.php

    Permanent Bases in Iraq: Where Politics and Law Hit a Brick Wall
    Over the last few months, the media have reported that the Pentagon is busy constructing what appear to be "enduring" (i.e., permanent) bases in Iraq. A recent Associated Press story noted that in 2005-2006, one billion dollars had been requested or approved for building or improving bases in Iraq. The Supplemental Appropriations bill itself includes a request for $348 million for further base and other construction.

    I'd like to give a free, unsolicited and humble advice to The Oil Drum, regarding the Drumbeat thing and the way information is organised. My credentials? I have been running an energy discussion site since October 2003.

    I think that TOD needs, either a Wiki, or a regular forum. Let's reserve the posts in the main page for commentaries on TOD posters and kill the drumbeats/open posts.

    TOD generates high quality discussion, very good contents, but this valuable info loses its value if you can't readily find it.

    With a Wiki or a well structured forum, information would be easily found, and also good threads can continue without being buried in a 200+ page comment.

    My experience at Crisis Energética tells me that the forum is the way to go, especially if your audience is not very technically minded, Wikis are perhaps more difficult to get.

    In two years and a half, our forums have had 25k+ messages vs 1400 main page stories, the mainpage serves the purpose of focusing the issues and building an editorial style for the site, but the real meat of the discussion (often highly technical), is in the forums.

    Just my two cents...

    I must admit I am finding the Drumbeat increasingly hard to digest.  

    I'm interested on the stuff relating to oil supply/demand - but its getting a bit time consuming scanning through an entire Drumbeat, particularly if I haven't checked for a couple of days.

    Not sure I am keen on forums either, but some of the Drumbeat material perhaps deserves its own posting on the front page with appropriate tags

    I'd settle for a "search" function that allowed me to specify both author AND keywords/string/contents/topic, rather than just one of the following.
    [topic=digestable post#=6.12/2:17pm]

    We can self-tag our postings if we want.
    Say the posting is about "digestable" DB's and we elect to nickname the topic "digestable". Then we each insert a tag like:
    [digestable 6.12/2:17pm] inside our text. To find postings directed to this nicknmaed topic, you do a search for the text string: "[digestable".

    The best way to enumerate the postings is by date and time, although a running count (001-999) may work also.

    The bracketed [tag] can be on the bottom of your posting rather than on top.

    Tags can be secret ones that only a select few know about given that the tag can be anywhere inside the text..

    For example, my secret tag might have been "text.." Who would guess that the extra period was not a typo?

    I was also thinking of a way to get The Oil Drum in a better shape.

    In anyway, make it so each page loads faster, with less images and more actual content.  Each seconds saved from loading time is a 10% increase in traffic.

    We have to find a way to keep getting the best articles made by Stuart, HO and Westexas up front so we dont have to leaf trough forum Topic.

    Also I think a rating system might be a good thing for getting the best posting upfront and keeping the worst at the end. I know people like to read post as a series of replies but reading what's really worth is far better.

    Also if a forum mode is to be used, I think you should remove the sign option. Forums tend to get harder to read when there is too much long signatures.  Putting more post per page is also a must to prevent from getting too much pages for each topics.

    As for a Wiki I know there is a PO wiki in french and it is really good.  It gives most of the good information in a organized way.

    Wiki writting could be made by other that the original poster.  Wiki articles would be sprouting from The Oil Drum rating system and TOD articles.  I dont know what people think of this and more importantly, who's gona maintain and contribute to this.

    Your ideas?

    Add a "thumbs up"-like clickable icon right in the comment line with author/date. Next to that it reads something like: "xxx readers liked/valued/endorse this comment" (Amazon bookreview style). Readers rate a comment by clicking the icon (pref. without a full page reload!)
    On the homepage you could add the total valuation score for the whole thread, as the sum of all individual comment scores. This way I can scan through pages and quickly see the most valued content and find where the real interactive discussions are.

    I like TOD as it is now, it works very fine for me. But ofcourse some of the suggestions above coule make it even better ;)

    Also I think a rating system might be a good thing for getting the best posting upfront and keeping the worst at the end.

    I don't like this idea at all.  It ends up getting all political, with posts getting downrated because people disagree with them, and uprated because they agree.  It's going to turn into a war between doomers and cornucopians.  User ratings are a good way to handle spammers on a board that's too large to be moderated by individuals, but that's about it.  

    I dunno...I'm not sure trying to turn a blog into a message board is a goal worth pursuing.  There are already peak oil message boards out there.  Do we really need another one?

    I think wikis might be a better option.

    Second that opinion.
    In anyway, make it so each page loads faster, with less images and more actual content.  Each seconds saved from loading time is a 10% increase in traffic.

    BT have just upgraded my broadband from 2Mb to 8Mb free of charge. No problem for me now with page loads. Very selfish I know....

    Several of us have pointed out that forum software works far far better for this sort of thing than BLOGs. Forum software has had many more years to mature, add features, etc., and it works well and robustly in most scenarios. There could even be a controlled discussion forum where BLOG posters here can start threads linked back to their original blog entry and open forums where people could start threads themselves if a topic was worth discussing. But for whatever reason, the Oil Drum chooses to not go down that path and we have what we have.
    Agreed. A forum seems much more logical, given that 90%+ of the content on TOD is now from readers/commenters.
    I want to congratulate WesTexas for getting his commentary so prominently displayed in the Dallas News

    The timing of peak oil is certainly the most important event of our time.  And how the global civilization deals with the fallout will determine whether a hundred years from now people are reading about these events on the internet, or merely herd goats through the ruins.  

    The timing of the Great Event is still uncertain, with one camp following Ken Deffeyes and Matt Simmons and saying peak is right now; with others following Colin Campbell and concluding that a spurt of deep sea drilling will more than offset depletion for another three or four years.

    Being involved with the Oil Drum is having a front row while watching history. Especially when Stuart's outstanding "close but no cigar" graphs come out, and we can get a real time picture of the shape of the curve.

    Offshore developments have a tough current to fight against: 8% depletion, political unrest, and the exhaustion of the three biggest oil fields.

    These threads make my day. I'm currently finishing work on a paper adobe greenhouse, and these threads provide food for thought as I work.

    Thanks for the ride.

    One of my hobbies, for several months, has been to send weekly e-mail messages to the editorial staff and a handful of writers at the Morning News.  It appears that they were actually reading them.  They asked me to do the rebuttal to the "We won't peak for 30 years" article.  I brought in Bart Anderson and Alan Drake to help out.  

    If you are so inclined, you might consider doing the same thing--weekly peak oil updates--with your local papers.  

    I thought it is interesting that IBM is declaring an end to the "colonising" of foreign lands for competive advantages.  


    In a rare public intervention, Big Blue's chairman and chief executive writes in today's Financial Times that traditional multinational companies need to abandon their almost colonial approach to operations outside their home country.

    Do they sense something?

    Something like the collapse of globalization do to energy shortages???  
    I thought Big Blue's example of the car companies was strained.  IBM needs a distributed structure in order to provide customized solutions for their customers.  Car companies do not customize vehicles in the same way.  Apples and oranges.
    I just like the fact that a large multinational woulf try to call a truce for the most part.  The tech sector is ultra competitive and cheap labor is the way to max margins.
    A not unexpectd but still depressing survey showing that the intention to keep driving at (almost) any cost is as alive and well in the UK as it is in the USA.

    "Public transport may never overtake people's preference for their own cars, whatever the cost," said esure's Mike Pickard.

    "For many people, the absence of cheap public transport means a car is essential in their lives and virtually any price will be paid for petrol," the insurer's head of risk and underwriting added in a statement.

    The research was sponsored by a car insurance company.  Might be just a tad biased.

    In 1970, 4% of Washington DC commuters used the city bus to get to work.  Today, over 40% use public transportation, mainly the 106 miles of  Washington Metro.

    IMO, more investment could raise that % to well over half.

    The same could be done in many US cities.

    Excerpts from "Dollar On The Edge", by Whitley Streiber:

    "The weaker the dollar becomes, the higher US interest rates must go, and the more pressure Americans will be under, at every level. The Organization for Economic Cooperation and some elements of the International Monetary Fund are predicting that the dollar will fall from 35% to 50% to account for the gigantic debt that the Bush Administration has created by the combination of tax cuts and spending on the war in Iraq.

    This will result in an increase in gasoline prices from the region of $3.00 to the region of $6.00, and will cause all imports to roughly double in price. This will mean that everything from clothing to cars to many grocery items will shoot up in price. At this point, the housing market will collapse, and there will be a wave of bankruptcies. But the new bankruptcy act, forced through congress by Tom DeLay last year after he received a half million dollar contribution from the credit card industry, will insure that debtors can never liquidate their indebtedness, meaning that they can never re-enter the economy, and therefore that recovery, if it occurs, will take at least a generation. This legislation had languished for years, because it is so economically dangerous."


    fallout you beat me to it.  I was going to point out something from this article in relation to deflation that has been posted.

    If you look at both sides of deflation/inflation, the Bernanke interest rate will play key.  He can only choose to raise or lower.  To do so would mean to fight inflation or ignoring it in hopes of inflation decreasing.  Even the hamstrung CPI figure is getting too high.  Real inflation is running around 8-10%.  

    If I remember correctly the biggest argument for deflation was due to massive housing collapse and thus the paper loss of billions of dollars.  This by definition is deflationary by Austrian thinking.  However in the face of a collapsing housing bubble, there would also be a dollar selloff.  The cheap consumer economy would be crippled because all imports would be rising in price due to the loss of dollar power.  So the consumers would face higher costs even if there houses were depreciating in value.  

    Since consumer spending is 2/3 of the economy I would think this pattern would weigh a lot more heavily long term.  There would be losses in the housing sector, but the fact the imports start to get a lot more expensive will add to inflation.  So what if a house isn't worth as much on paper, these aren't realized gains or losses to people.  I can sit in my house for 20 years waiting for it to break even and I didn't lose a thing.  It's not until you sell that you realize a loss or gain.

    And I've been harping on this ever since someone pointed me in the right direction (thanks who ever it was)...

    There is evidence that the US is attempting to manage the decline by purchasing its own debt. As Asian purchasing of US paper declined last month, the slack was taken up by Caribbean and UK banks that would not normally have the liquidity to make such purchases. Therefore, they are acting for a third party, and the only party that would buy dollars when a loss in value is inevitable is the US Treasury.

    Now someone tell me why it's such a great thing to have our lender of last resort buying our own bonds?  Something is very, very wrong.

    There is evidence that the US is attempting to manage the decline by purchasing its own debt.

    How does the Fed do this? Can it just print dollars and use them to buy its own treasury notes? Or does it need to use foreign exchange?

    It can print them but that's too blatant. Go research what happened in the 1970s inflation spiral. They were rather obvious at what they did then and appear to have gotten a bit more sophisticated in hiding their trail so as not to spook the herd... er, market. ;)
    All the T-bills are sold through a select network of banks.  Goldman, Morgan, etc.  I think there are only five if memory serves correct.  They are selling these on the open market.  Carribean banks are buying up a lot of T-bills.  Caribbean banks have very little real money of their own.  There is no concrete proof that I know of, but the speculation is that the Fed is buying up T-Bills from these carribean banks, since those banks have no ability to really buy up the billions of t-bills needed.  There is only one lender of last resort and Ben Bernanke has publicly stated that the Fed will use "unconventional means" to keep the economy going.  I think this qualifies, but to many it sounds too crazy.
    There is some evidence that Russian, Saudi, perhaps Chinese, and other "oligarchs" and "kleptocrats" use London and Carribean financial institutions to store away their take. A surge in money transfers out of the middle east, for instance, is one sign that I look for to indicate "peak oil". I don't think the rats leaving a sinking ship really care if the dollars they hold lose a little value relatively. Perhaps the best question is "are the hideaway islands of the world dollarized or euro-ized"?

    On the sane non-conspiracy side, there is over $17T dollars in the hands of institutions that could load up on t-bills if they're dumping other asset classes.

    I keep more than half of my cash in GIM (a closed end bond fund).  They invest in foreign T-Bills (sovereign debt), from Norway to Indonesia, but they have shrunk US exposure from 20% to 0.8% (probably the minimum needed for operations, dividends, etc.)

    Interest is taxed as a dividends, i.e max 15%.  Currently bumped up to 4.2 cents/month.  Market price ~$9.  I reinvest dividends.

    NOT risk free, but lower risk than US Treasuries IMHO.

    It seems that diversified foreign T-Bills would be a better choice than US T-Bills.

    You aren't afraid that central banks around the world will "print money"?
    Not all at once.  The fund managers seem to be decent (not perfect) about seeing this coming.  The only currency that they have "negative exposure" (-0.1%) to is the New Sealand dollar.  Given that their balance of trade is WORSE than that of the US (as % of GDP), this makes some sense.  Recent drops in NZ$ confirm their strategy.

    So spread your bets (currently EU (euro + pound + Noerwegian  krona + Icelandic krona + Polish ztoly +...) = Asian exposure) and lower your risk.

    A few years ago they were 20% US$, now 0.8%

    They are also now shortening their maturities.

    For a decent return (tax advantaged) with SOME risk, but a high liklihood of preserving most of capital value, I like the stock as a place to park over half of my cash.

    Excellent suggestion. I've got some FAX in an account somewhere which is probably even higher risk.
    Oh NO! Technical problems at the energy bulletin, they may be offline for a few days??  How am I going to get my energy-news fix??  Oh well, have to go back to Fox for all my energy news...  (((that was a joke)))  ;-)
    A few days?!  Must be some problem.
    Bush Administration Quietly Plans NAFTA Super Highway
    by Jerome R. Corsi
    Posted Jun 12, 2006

    Quietly but systematically, the Bush Administration is advancing the plan to build a huge NAFTA Super Highway, four football-fields-wide, through the heart of the U.S. along Interstate 35, from the Mexican border at Laredo, Tex., to the Canadian border north of Duluth, Minn.  

    Once complete, the new road will allow containers from the Far East to enter the United States through the Mexican port of Lazaro Cardenas, bypassing the Longshoreman's Union in the process.  The Mexican trucks, without the involvement of the Teamsters Union, will drive on what will be the nation's most modern highway straight into the heart of America.  The Mexican trucks will cross border in FAST lanes, checked only electronically by the new "SENTRI" system. The first customs stop will be a Mexican customs office in Kansas City, their new Smart Port complex, a facility being built for Mexico at a cost of $3 million to the U.S. taxpayers in Kansas City.  

    As incredible as this plan may seem to some readers, the first Trans-Texas Corridor segment of the NAFTA Super Highway is ready to begin construction next year.  Various U.S. government agencies, dozens of state agencies, and scores of private NGOs (non-governmental organizations) have been working behind the scenes to create the NAFTA Super Highway, despite the lack of comment on the plan by President Bush.  The American public is largely asleep to this key piece of the coming "North American Union" that government planners in the new trilateral region of United States, Canada and Mexico are about to drive into reality.

    Is there a source for this, other than Jerome "No dinosaurs ever walked on the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico, therefore oil is abiotic" Corsi?
    Glad to see you noticed the author.
    Yeah, Mr. Corsi is quite a piece of work, eh?

    I notice that Jan Lundberg (peak oil proponent, Culturechange.org.) also opposes the nafta superhighway plan.

    There there are a few other sources for possible corroborating evidence, but no smoking guns I've yet found.  Best quote was from February 2006's 'Monthly Review' (below), which says, "The proposed NAFTA corridors, which are in the promotional and pre-construction stage, will dwarf the capacity of the existing NAFTA highways and railways."

    Maybe we should put Lou Dobbs on the case...
    There are just so many things wrong with this, but honestly - A freaking HIGHWAY, not rails?  

    If this is real, you can take it as one more measure of how effectively our society will respond to PO - right along with billions for oil wars.  Let's build a great big goddamn highway to help suppress salaries in the US even further.  Yeah, that's the ticket!  

    The Bush Administration has decided to cancel NASA climate satellites crucial to our ability to understand climate change. By shelving critical programs such as the Deep Space Climate Observatory, the administration continues to do all it can to conceal the reality of climate change.

    Two missions that could have helped us to understand, and plan for, global warming have been cut. Beth Daley writes in the Boston Globe that more than $200 million in future funding has been eliminated for satellite projects called The Deep Space Climate Observatory and The Global Precipitation Measurement mission, despite the fact that the Deep Space satellite has already been built, at a cost of $100 million. These projects would have warned us about the degree of global warming by sending back a continuous picture of the sunlit surface of the earth, as well as measurements of soil moisture and such things as solar radiation, ozone, clouds and water vapor. As well as helping us understand the impact of global warming, this data would also help us predict future droughts and floods.

    Read about it here:

    It's far better than Bush has diverted the funding for the Mars colonization scheme (with well drilling technology to be researched by Halliburton). Then, in 2020, a few rich people can escape the Earth for the perpetual wasteland on the red planet ;)
    You worry about climate change when you're told to worry, boy - got that?  And we don't need no satellites to tell us when it's going to happen - if it's a problem, there will be something in the old testament about it.
    For those proponents of the (mistaken) notion that more CO2 in the atmosphere is a good thing for plants:

    Climate Change: The View From the Patio
    Published: June 4, 2006

    SCIENTISTS had some sobering news last week about the potential impact of climate change, and it didn't come from the foot of a shrinking glacier in Alaska or the shores of a tropical resort where the rising ocean is threatening the beachfront bar.

    It came from a North Carolina forest, at an experimental plot where scientists can precisely control the concentration of carbon dioxide in the air. Duke researchers discovered that when exposed to higher levels of CO2, the greenhouse gas released in ever-increasing quantities from human activity, poison ivy goes haywire.

    The researchers found that the weedlike plant grew much faster under CO2 conditions similar to those projected for the middle of the century. The plant also produced a more noxious form of its rash-causing chemical: a more poisonous poison ivy.

    "We were surprised to find it," said William H. Schlesinger, a Duke professor who took part in the study.

    While much of the discussion of climate change focuses on the big picture of rising sea levels and increasing global air and ocean temperatures, the Duke finding helps explain the smaller picture. Climate change may be a real nuisance in the backyard.

    Poison ivy is only the latest entry on a growing list of pests, both plant and animal, that may be nurtured. Japanese beetles, a voracious eater of turf and trees, live longer under higher levels of carbon dioxide. The ranges of other invasive insects, like fire ants, are expected to increase as the planet warms. Disease-carrying ticks have already been shown to have moved northward in Sweden. Mosquitoes could fly farther, too.

    Poplars and birch trees are flowering earlier in New England, and some global warming forecasts predict that the region's sugar maples will eventually disappear. Elevated carbon dioxide has been shown to cause ragweed and certain pine trees to produce more pollen. "It's not a pretty picture," said Paul R. Epstein, associate director of the Center for Health and the Global Environment at Harvard Medical School.

    While there is still disagreement over the extent of global warming and its potential to reshape the environment, Dr. Epstein noted that many of the changes that he and other scientists are tracking fall outside that debate. "They're just a result of carbon dioxide stimulation, something that no one disputes is rising," he said.

    Poison ivy isn't the only plant whose growth is encouraged by additional carbon dioxide. In the Duke experiments, Dr. Schlesinger said, the trees themselves show an increase in growth under carbon dioxide concentrations roughly 50 percent higher than current conditions. "If you're a timber products company, you look at that favorably," he said.

    Dr. Epstein, who has studied ragweed growth under increased carbon dioxide, said, "There are some side effects for public health as well as ecology." More cases of hay fever are likely to result from the additional pollen from ragweed and pine cones; a study at the same Duke forest showed that both plants produced more pollen under higher levels of CO2.

    Increases in asthma have already been detected, Dr. Epstein said, as pollen and other airborne allergens combine with particles from truck and bus exhaust to reach deep into the lungs.

    Jonathan Patz, of the Nelson Institute and the department of population health sciences at the University of Wisconsin, summed up the situation. "The bottom line is that there are many major health outcomes that are highly sensitive to climate change," he said.

    But climate change, Dr. Patz said, involves more than just temperature. Extreme weather -- harsher droughts on one end, and heavier rainfalls on the other -- is expected to become more common.

    That could lead to more outbreaks of disease. Dr. Patz led a study of episodes of waterborne disease in the United States in the second half of the 20th century and found that most of them followed periods of very heavy rainfall. One of the worst cases was an outbreak of parasitic infections in 1993 that sickened 400,000 people in Milwaukee. This was preceded by the heaviest rainfall month in the city in 50 years.

    More intense rainfall "is something that water managers are going to have to take seriously," Dr. Patz said.

    Extreme dry conditions can lead to disease as well. Dr. Epstein said that the 1999 outbreak in New York of West Nile virus coincided with a severe drought. The mosquito that transmits the virus between animals and humans finds partly evaporated, filthy pools of water more suitable for breeding.

    Other insects flourish in the seesawing between extreme wet and extreme dry conditions, Dr. Epstein said. "That's exactly what the bugs love," he said. "They like it dried out, and then rain that floods an area" and creates pools of standing water for breeding. "In the Northeast, that's what gives you outbreaks of equine encephalitis," he said, referring to another mosquito-borne disease.

    Mosquitoes are pests, of course, as are Japanese beetles, ticks and poison ivy, for that matter. "It's not at all surprising that pests get pestier" because of changing environmental conditions, said May R. Berenbaum, head of the department of entomology at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, who was involved in the Japanese beetle studies. "They have this opportunistic life history."

    Thomas E. Lovejoy, president of the Heinz Center, a Washington research group on environmental policy, said: "When you're sending ripples through the ecosystem, I think what you do is tilt the balance a bit in favor of the pests. It begins to sound sort of biblical."

    Mr. Lovejoy said that the increase in nuisance species, and the potential disappearance of other, much-prized species, may help raise awareness of climate change.

    "The really strong reaction in the New England states about the prospect of losing the sugar maple is a great example of that," he said.

    "Part of that is that it is a fall tourist magnet, and it gives us a little bit of syrup in the spring. But the reaction also is, 'Hey, this is part of where I live, and it won't be there.' "
    http://www.nytimes.com/2006/06/04/weekinreview/04fountain.html?ex=1307073600&en=1e06f666627ecd0a &ei=5088&partner=rssnyt&emc=rss
    Sorry about the long post, but as NYTimes articles sometimes go behind a paywall after a short bit, it was a way to preserve the content for posterity.

    Oooh...and not only does the poison ivy grow more vigorously with more CO2, but it makes more powerful poison!

    "And a CO2-driven vine also produces more of its rash-causing chemical, urushiol, conclude experiments conducted in a forest at Duke University where scientists increased carbon-dioxide levels to those expected in 2050."

    "'The fertilization effect of rising CO2 on poison ivy ... and the shift toward a more allergenic form of urushiol have important implications for the future health of both humans and forests,' the study concludes."


    The lifetime of trees is long enough to see signicant environmental changes.

    Iceland has tested their native tree, Icelandic birch (a natural hybrid, 98% of trees when the Vikings landed) in a greenhouse with elevated CO2 levels.  The tree became "confused" about when to harden up for winter.

    So they are planting a wider variety of trees to give better protection against environmental changes (all with greater commericial appeal).

    BTW, reforesting Iceland would set GW back one year.  That much carbon would be captured.

    Also, the European wasp appeared in Reykjavik ~15 years ago, MUCH to the annoyance of the natives !

    GW is quite apparent today in Iceland.  It is a "given" accepted by all.

    US 'No-work list' planned.
    Employee verification system would affect all workers, privacy experts say.
    By Lisa Friedman, Staff Writer

    WASHINGTON - Remember the Department of Homeland Security's "no-fly'' lists that erratically flagged 3-year-old children and dozens of men named David Nelson as terrorists seeking to board commercial airplanes?
    Well, now privacy experts are warning America to prepare for the "no-work'' list."

    And we here in the states slip a little further towards statism.

    Given the shouting matches we've recently seen here re: libertarianism, I suggest some comic relief here.  (Linked from Energy Bulletin).

    a scientist and one of these deranged libertarian right-wing anti-environmentalist science deniers go out for a drive...

    Question: If you were a theoretical oil producer (IOC, NOC, or country) which scenario would you rather have, and why?

    a) Your production costs are $15 per barrel, and the global price of oil is $30.


    b) Your production costs are triple that at $45 per barrel, and the global price of oil is $70.

    Answer (a) higher margin, lower consumer cost product, ala "consumer non-durables" -- the best sector investment over the past 50 years.
    So, if you were selling 1000 barrels a month, you would rather take a profit of $15,000 versus $25,000 in that month?
    No one would take less profit, but under these circumstances and long term planning I would take "a' as well.  I have a 100% margin.  I can invest a smaller amount of money and make 100% returns.  Looking at nominal gains is myopic.  As a business I must be concerned about 5-10 yrs out and the first option gives you a much better position to be in long term.
    At the $70 number there is loads of incentive for competing technologies to reduce long term income (this is Theoretical Oil Co after all, not Peak Oil Co).  Competition is the thing you're trying to avoid.  The big bucks are apparently in soda pop, chewing gum, mayonaise, etc.
    If I was able to sell "theoretical oil," I'd take whatever I could get!!  :)
    I'd take $15 prodiction oil and "sit on it" until prices get to $70! :)
    With all these people riding scooters and motorcycles to save gas, I've been keeping an eye on accident reports, but this is a doozy: Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger was riding his motorcycle, in Pittsburgh, when a car turned left into his path. He wasn't wearing a helmet, flew off his bike, his head hit the car's windshield and the pavement. He now has at least a broken jaw. How can people be so stupid?

    My motorcycle accident was also from a car turning left into my path, but I wore a helmet, leather jacket and gloves. I see people riding scooters in t-shirts and tank tops, though. Road rash is not attractive. Brain damage is even less appealing.

    I don't know if anyone has raised the point, but today's Bloomberg is carrying a story on a Saudi Aramco presentation stating that Saudi production will be 12.0 mmbd by year-end 2009, down from the January forecast of 12.5 mmbd. The presentation was made by Saudi Aramco CEO Jum'ah to an oil and gas conference being held in Kuala Lumpur, but I'm unsure if this forecast revision is just being made public today. Jum'ah also repeated assertions of probable reserve additions of 200 billion bbls.
    Could you provide a link, I can't find this.
    Sorry, I saw it on Bloomberg's proprietary news service, not on the web. But my posting did provide most of the information contained in the brief article itself.
    Actually, you can read the text of the speech on Saudi Aramco's web site under "speeches."
    Ha.  I like his choice of words:

    "Just as a tree casts a longer shadow at sunrise and sunset, these various developments serve to magnify the importance of what would, in a different market environment, be rather tangential concerns."

    And he talks about quality:

    "Overall, crude oil supplies are growing heavier and more sour; this is particularly true if we look specifically at global spare capacity, which is overwhelmingly composed of heavy, sour crudes. At the same time, demand for products is becoming whiter and lighter, and we are seeing a greater proliferation of tighter refined product specifications in various markets, largely due to governmental regulations in different localities. Caught in between is a worldwide refining system whose capacity is stretched and which is unable to handle these heavy, sour crudes, and which in many places will require substantial investment in order to meet more stringent end-user specs. All of this leads to even tighter product markets and higher product prices, of course."

    And then he talks about ramping up to 12 mb/d by 2009, even considering declines in aging fields:

    "...in the next five to six years we will be adding production capacity which exceeds the current production of Venezuela or Kuwait. Some of that capacity will offset natural decline, while the remainder will serve to expand our maximum sustained production capability, which by the end of 2009 will reach 12 million barrels per day."

    Nice find derznovich.  Interesting speech.

    "...in the next five to six years we will be adding production capacity which exceeds the current production of Venezuela or Kuwait..."

    Texas State Geologist Scott Tinker, last year, in response to a question from me, said "While we may not be able to equal our peak production, we can significantly increase our production through the use of better technology."

    Texas oil production has fallen for 33 straight years.  Once again using Texas as a model for Saudi Arabia, one could assume that the Saudis would be talking about their plans to increase production  in the year 2039.

    Westexas, do you have a copy of 'Twilight?' I often want to ask specific questions on certain issues, or make comments pertaining to facts and figures in the book, but don't know anybody who can engage in a serious discussion at this level (since I don't know anyone who owns the book, or has even read it).

    I have some ideas which would be easier to get across if I could just reference page numbers in Simmons. It really sucks when you have to spend a week constructing a graph so you can say one thing.

    Westexas, do you have a copy of 'Twilight?


    Nice one. He's the real Oil CEO. I hope you stay with us and keep posting stuff like this.
    IEA have made a huge 550kb downward revision, easily the biggest in recent times, to their April supply figure, and gone straight on without missing a beat to claim a 450kb increase for May supply.
    Yeah, right. Just wait until next month, when they have to revise that forecast downward also.