New York Times Debunks Peak Oil


The Times published a great article yesterday debunking the notion that the peak of world oil production is nigh. To wit:

Within the last decade, technology advances have made it possible to unlock more oil from old fields, and, at the same time, higher oil prices have made it economical for companies to go after reserves that are harder to reach. With plenty of oil still left in familiar locations, forecasts that the world's reserves are drying out have given way to predictions that more oil can be found than ever before.

In a wide-ranging study published in 2000, the U.S. Geological Survey estimated that ultimately recoverable resources of conventional oil totaled about 3.3 trillion barrels, of which a third has already been produced. More recently, Cambridge Energy Research Associates, an energy consultant, estimated that the total base of recoverable oil was 4.8 trillion barrels. That higher estimate — which Cambridge Energy says is likely to grow — reflects how new technology can tap into more resources.

Of course, refusing to affect false modesty, I will mention that I did tell y'all that peak oil was bunk back in May 2006. The Times does overlook the worrying problem that an "oil crisis" could erupt anyway because of stupid or malicious behavior on the part of corrupt governments that "own" 77 percent of currently known reserves.

In fact, the vile Hugo Chavez has just seized a multibillion dollar oil project from Exxon Mobil and will likely do that to other companies soon. Venezuela's oil production is already falling below its OPEC quota and I predict it will soon get worse given the general effectiveness of socialist management. A point that I made back in May and more recently.

Anyway, whole Times article here.

Disclosure: I'm going to get around to selling those pesky 50 shares of ExxonMobil any day now.