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Archive for the category “peakoil”

The Case For Peak Oil (Now)

JODI-World-TotalThis is it? Peak oil 2015?

After kjell Aleklett yet another voice who claims that ‘peak oil’ (=point in time where the world’s oil production will reach a historic maximum) is now. World oil production increased over the last two years thanks to shale oil production. Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Russia, USA and Canada were mostly responsible for the production increase over the past ten years.

Big-5Big five

The rest combines it 5 million barrel/day less since 2005:


The author concludes:

I am more convinced than ever that 2015 will be the final peak in world oil production. And we may know well before a lot of people realize.

[] – The Case For Peak Oil, by Ron Patterson
[deepresource] – Kjell Aleklett Update: Peak Oil = 2015-2016

Peak Oil Infographic


More Signs That 2015-2016 Will be Global Peak-Oil


Even representatives of the oil industry have to admit:

In a world where oil prices are expected to average just $50-$70 per barrel over the next few years, actual decline rates could easily reach 3 percent or even 4 percent per year. Under a range of plausible assumptions, decline rates could easily cut between 1.4 million and 3.6 million bpd from the output of existing fields in 2016 and again in 2017.

Peak oil finally arrived with a decade delay, due to fracking.

[] – Kemp: Decline Rates Will Ensure Oil Output Falls in 2016
[deepresource] – Kjell Aleklett Update: Peak Oil = 2015-2016

Richard Heinberg, kom er maar in.

More Evidence That Peak Oil is Now


Earlier, ASPO chairman Kjell Aleklett predicted that peak oil would be 2015-2016. Now Ron Patterson of has analyzed new EIA data and comes tentatively to the same conclusion:

I am now more convinced than ever that 2015 will see the peak in world crude oil production. I have very closely studied the charts of every producing nation and my prognosis is based on that study. I see many nations in steep decline and most every other nation peaking now, or in the last couple of years, or very near their peak today. These include the world’s three largest producers, Russia, Saudi Arabia and the USA.

Editor: the delay of execution thanks to fracking has now been consumed. Expect the oil price to go up substantially soon. Again: peak oil is a confusing term. Far more interesting is peak fossil, since most applications of oil, gas and coal are interchangeable. Nevertheless, peak oil will make itself felt, especially for those people who recently bought a new car fueled by diesel or petrol. That was probably a miss-investment.

[] – 2015 Could Be The Year Of Peak Oil

BP World Energy Data 2015


Includes: crude oil + shale oil + oil sands + natural gas.

Highlights data:

  • 90% production increase comes from USA and Canada, the rest from Brasil. Price drop will probably eliminate further North-America production growth this year.
  • Largest decline came from Libya.
  • Russia and China, the world’s #2 and #5 producers, together produced nearly 18% of the world’s oil. But recently, their annual gains have been shrinking.
  • Iraq and Iran have the potential to make significant production gains.

[] – ASPO USA Peak Oil Review, 15 June 2015

World Oil Output Last 3 Years

Peak oil: not there yet. According to ASPO president Kjell Aleklett,
peak oil = 2015-2016.

[] – World Oil Output Last 3 Years

Peak Oil Debunked

Peak Oil Sneak Preview

Severe fuel shortages in Nigeria.
Reason: strikes by fuel marketers and transporters.

This is extraordinary. Remember all those dire things that were supposed to happen when Peak Oil hit? All the stuff in The Long Emrgency? Cars queuing up for miles to buy petrol, public transportation jacking up rates, cell phones not working, banks closing their doors, planes grounded for lack of fuel, supermarkets stripped bare, scalpers selling gas in jerry-cans, factories shutting down, stations going off the air, people losing their jobs, political disorder, human sacrifice, dogs and cats living together, mass hysteria… Turns out all of it is happening…In Nigeria… Felix Onuah, a Nigerian journalist, told Al Jazeera from Abuja on Thursday that many companies and businesses have been forced to shut down due to a dearth of supplies.”There is a serious crisis. About eighty percent of petrol stations do not have fuel in the country,” he said.


[] – Peak Oil Dress Rehearsal?

Peak Oil Comic



Cassandra Ugo Bardi and the Philosophy of Less


Ugo Bardi is a member of ASPO Italy and has written books about resource depletion. And on top of that since March 2011 he maintains a blog named Cassandra Legacy. Browsing through his earlier entries it is obvious that Bardi is not afraid to use the word ‘collapse’.

Yet two days ago he posted an article on his blog that seems to contradict his earlier concern:

With the ongoing collapse of the oil prices, we can say that it is game over for the oil and gas industry, in particular for the production of “tight” (or “shale”) oil and gas. Prices may still go back to reasonably high levels, in the future, but the industry will never be able to regain the momentum that had made its US supporters claim “energy independence” and “centuries of abundance.” The bubble may not burst all of a sudden, but it surely will deflate… I think we can identify at least three different strategies for the future: 1) more of the same (oil and gas) 2) a push to nuclear, and 3) a push for renewables. Let’s see to examine what the future may have in store for us…

3. A big push for renewables. Surprisingly, the renewable industry may have serious chances to take over from a senescent oil industry, leaving the nuclear industry standing still and gasping at the sight. The progress in renewable technology, especially in photovoltaic cells, has been simply fantastic during the past decade (see, e.g., the recent MIT report). We have now a set of methods for producing electric power that can compete with traditional sources, watt for watt, dollar for dollar. Consider that the most efficient of these technologies do not need critically rare materials and that none brings the strategic and security problem of nuclear. Finally, consider that it has been shown (Sgouridis, Bardi, and Csala) that the present renewable technology could take over from the current sources fast enough to prevent major damage from climate change.

It looks like we have a winner, right? Indeed, the atmosphere around renewables is one of palpable optimism. If renewable energy picks up enough momentum, there will be nothing able to stop it until it has catapulted all of us, willing or not, into a new (and cleaner) world.

There is a problem, though. The renewable industry is still tiny in comparison to the nuclear industry and especially in comparison to the oil and gas industry. And we know that might usually wins against right. The sheer financial power of the traditional energy industry may well be enough to abort the change before it becomes unstoppable. Something wicked may still come……. (*)

Editor: we started our blog nine months later than Bardi started his and we have arrived at the same conclusion as he does: in principle there is no long term energy problem. Renewables can for 100% replace fossil fuel as an energy source. And in all likelihood there is enough fossil fuel left to set up this new renewable energy infrastructure. Creating 10-15 solar panels per household is less of an effort than producing a car for said household and far less costly and lasts 30 years, so what’s the problem? Our focus of concern has moved away from energy problems towards geopolitical transition and risk of war, financial instability and multicultural destabilization.

EXTRACTED says that we are reaching the limits of economically feasible extraction of a number of mineral commodities, including metals and fossil fuels, as while the world will never run out of its minerals, extracting them will prove far more expensive, making their everyday use unfeasible. Instead, we must meticulously manage what is left and use renewables to generate energy. We need to close the industrial cycle, recover the minerals used and transform our approach to resources.

Ugi Bardi’s speech during the hearing “EU Energy Security Strategy under the conditions of the Internal Energy Market” organized by ITRE Committee (Industry, research, energy) at the European Parliament, Brussels 2014-11-5. Bardi is professor of Chemistry at the University of Florence and he is past chair and cofounder of Aspo Italia, the Italian association for the study of peak oil.

[] – Ugo Bardi
[] – Ugo Bardi
[] – Wir versuchen die Leute zu warnen

Winners & Losers Oil Price Collapse


The data explains why Europe is booming right now.

But this picture could change radically soon, with the rapidly approaching of peak oil in 2015-2016.

Kjell Aleklett Update: Peak Oil = 2015-2016

What happened to peak oil?

Here an older 2012 video from Swedish peak oil luminary and ASPO chairman Kjell Aleklett.

At the time, when we started this blog, we were entirely in the Richard Heinberg mode of thinking, summarized as: ‘industrial society is going to be hit very soon by a truck, that few see coming and industrial society is doomed, because the world is running out of oil quickly.

We no longer think that is the case. That doesn’t mean that peak oil is not going to happen, but it is at least a little postponed and there is fossil fuel life after peak oil. On the fossil fuel supply front, we are much more optimistic than we were three years ago. Meanwhile we think that it is very well possible to have a sustainable light-weight industrial society for 100% based on renewable energy, to be largely realized by 2050, at least in Europe, North-America and China.

There is no video made by Aleklett since, so this could suggest that he quietly dropped the peak oil subject? Not really. Here a recent article from his blog, let’s see what he has to say on peak oil in 2015:

[] – The crash in the price of oil may change the oil market – a look at the IEA’s “Oil Medium-Term Market Report 2015”

The article discusses this report:

[] – Medium-Term Oil Market Report 2015 (80 euro)

Aleklett argues that he and the other ASPO members were basically completely correct with their predictions concerning conventional oil and that production indeed peaked in 2005. The increase in oil production of 4.2 Mb/d we saw from 2008 to 2013 was not cheap (conventional) oil; It came from deepwater, from Canada’s oil-sands and as NGL and shale oil from fracking in the USA.

The world acording to the IEA

Aleklett explains that a reduced need for oil imports (US cars becoming 25% more efficient over the past decade) has led to the current oversupply of oil on the world market and corresponding price implosion. In other words: demand destruction was an important factor causing the drop in the oil prices.

According to Aleklett, OPEC has lost its significance, because it no longer has the will to set the price by varying production, like it did in the past. Everybody is now producing the maximum amount it can, which lead to price erosion.

Aleklett is skeptical of the IEA’s future prognoses. According to him neither shale oil nor the price crash of the past six months negate the fact that the world finds itself near Peak Oil and he concludes concerning conventional plus unconventional oil:

There are strong indications that 2015/2016 may see this global peak.

Editor: in our view, Aleklett might well be right about “peak oil=2016”, but he is focusing too much on oil, where he should concentrate on fossil fuel in general. With the current level of technology, oil, gas and coal are highly interchangeable, although they are not equally clean (read: dirty). When you add up all potentially combustible hydrocarbon material, still stored in the earth’s crust or laying around on the bottom of the ocean (methane-hydrates), we tentatively come to the conclusion that fossil fuel is indeed an infinite resource. Not in a literally sense, after all the earth is a sphere with 12,000 km diameter, but in a practical sense, namely that there is probably more fossil fuel around than the tiny earth’s atmosphere ever can handle. This is easy to exemplify: the atmosphere measures about 30 km. If in a thought experiment the atmosphere would be cooled to near zero degrees Kelvin, that atmosphere would shrink to a pool of ca. 10 meter liquid oxygen and nitrogen. The atmosphere is that thin. And it is in that tiny pool that cars, airplanes, home heating equipment, etc., etc. discharge their combustion waste into.

To illustrate the huge fossil fuel reserves, take for example the recent report about the discoveries of huge coal reserves under the North Sea, 20-150 times the total amount of oil burned so far in the entire history.

Another question is if that fossil fuel is accessible. Key parameter is EROEI (energy return on energy investment), that is: do you get more energy in return compared to the amount of energy you need to invest to harvest the fuel? That’s a matter of technology and that is a very dynamic factor.

The fact that the atmosphere could be the final limiting factor in global fossil fuel consumption is acknowledged in the IEA report:

“There is a rapidly growing discussion within the oil industry regarding what are called ‘stranded assets’ – the fact that the larger part of the world’s fossil fuel reserves cannot be produced if the world is to avoid serious climate change. New calculations presented in the journal Nature in January show that 80% of the world’s coal reserves and one third of the world’s oil reserves cannot be used, at least not before 2050.

Conclusion: for better or for worse, there is a near endless amount of fossil fuel waiting in the earth’s crust, but it will be technology that will determine if these reserves can be exploited economically. The end of the fossil fuel age will probably come in leaps and bounds. Perhaps that in a year time oil prices will sky-rocket again, if the world does indeed pass peak oil (conventional + unconventional). This will cause a shift to other fossil fuels. The best energy strategy is to be not distracted by fossil fuel price variations and continue on the path of installation of renewable energy (wind/solar) and demand destruction.

Read more…

Richard Heinberg – The Law of Diminishing Returns

Note that Heinberg has quietly dropped his original Greatest Hit: the subject of Peak Oil. The message is now about ‘less complexity, less debt, less fossil fuel’, the latter not as a constraint imposed on us by geology, but as a matter of life style choice.

Not that we disagree with that message, but it seems that Heinberg has arrived at the same conclusion as we gradually did over the past 18 months: we are not going to run out of affordable fossil fuel any time soon and that we indeed can fry the planet many times over with all that combustible stuff around.

We are intrigued by Heinberg’s advocation of ‘less population’. Is Richard going to organize a ‘Texas chain saw massacre‘ all by himself?

Nice new glasses, Richard!

Read more…

Oil Apocalypse: Peak Oil – What If the Oil Runs Out?

Peak Oil with Richard Heinberg and James Hamilton

Gepubliceerd op 28 mrt. 2015
Our lead story: This week Stanford said that it would divest all of its investments in coal-mining companies, becoming the wealthiest US university to pledge divestment from sectors of the.

Recorded February 25th, 2014 in Vancouver, BC Richard Heinberg speaks on his newest book, covering the short-term nature of the recent North American oil boom and the financial bubble that.

Richard Heinberg explaining everything that you need to know about Peak Oil and how to prepare for it, because we are already deep in Peak Oil time!

Oil Price Dynamics Explained By Quantitative Easing?


Why the rapid drop in oil prices?

Conventional explanations:

  • Saudi-Arabia increased oil production on orders of Washington to hurt Russia and Iran
  • Fracking boom in the US
  • Slowdown China
  • Demand destruction, like many people driving less and in smaller cars

Here is another explanation:

high oil prices were the result of FED policy of quantitative easing.

Now that the FED has announced it will stop that practice, oil prices are back to normal again.

Easy money had kept oil prices artificially high for much longer than fundamentals warranted, as Chinese demand and oil supply had started to turn back in 2011, and oil prices have now merely returned to their long-term average

Although we are not willing to accept this theory head over heels, it is interesting nevertheless. Especially the following quote from the article resonates:

Sharma rightly points out, though, that supply and demand haven’t changed enough to create a 50% plunge in prices.

[] – The Real (and Troubling) Reason Behind Lower Oil Prices

Boomer Doomers


Interesting article, linked to here:

[] – Boomer Doomers

There are many more doomers in America than in Europe and for good reason. The idea of an energy transition is much more accepted in Europe than in the US and as a consequence Europe is mentally better prepared. In Europe the energy transition is government program, but the US does not have an official renewable energy transition program on the federal level, the US still prefers to believe in an ‘oil glut’. Financially, the US is a house of cards, unlike most of Europe (except fruit fly Greece), mainly because Europe does not try to conquer the world. The US is owned by an elite that intends to use the resources of the US to achieve global empire, with most of the rest of the world resisting that idea, a recipe for disaster (for this reason alone we love ISIS, the other reason is that they are making themselves impossible in Europe, what no right-wing party could ever have dreamed to accomplish). But most threatening for the stability of the US state is the adventurous level of ethnic diversity, which sooner or later always leads to ethnic conflict and civil war on the very moment that the leading majority becomes a minority.

Personal note: we do recognize a lot in this article, first of all the age profile and the drive to ‘prep’. But there are a lot of differences as well. This article is very American. For us the idea of ‘peak oil’ was not discovered, but rediscovered ca. 2005, after reading Deffeyes and Heinberg. But peak-oil awareness was already present in 1972 with the release of the Report of the Club of Rome, which would determine the choice of university study (renewable energy technology).

We no longer fear that the crisis will be initiated by a sudden lack of fossil fuel, like we did when we began this blog, early 2012. The most likely crisis initiator will be a financial crash, either Greek default or crash of major US banks and/or funds, like in 2008 and subsequent chaos. We are more prepping for this than a world running out of fossil fuel during our lifetime. We are preparing for zero pension rather than zero liter fuel.

Personal prepping, realized or planned:

  • Eight 250W solar panels on the roof very soon, which precisely will cover a modest 1800 kwh/year electricity consumption: super fast HP-PC (40 Watt), 26 inch HP-monitor (95 Watt), television (133 Watt for the news, a German Krimi in the weekend, but mostly for Youtube vids via Google cast), wifi (12 Watt but 24 h/day), fridge (0.2 kwh/day), freezer (0.3 kwh/day), washing machine (1 kwh/session, once a week), lights (negligible), gadgets (negligible), central heating pump (unknown consumption). All electricity consumption was measured with a $15 Walmart device like this one, which not only measures current, but also cumulative power consumption of a switch on/switch off fridge over a period of time or television over a week.
  • Next year 13 m garden wall will be covered with ten 250W solar panels to power an electric heat pump, in an attempt to become complete independent from fossil fuels, although a connection to the grid will still be necessary to even out solar supply fluctuations. Additionally these garden wall panels will be embedded in a wooden casing with glass plates at the front and isolation at the back, to fully utilize (electricity + heat) incoming solar radiation and use the warm air between glass and black solar panel to directly heat the living room.
  • 130 m2 garden in the middle of a mid-sized Dutch city used for vegetable and potato production, much to the amazement of the neighbors. Raised beds, much like James Howard Kunstler’s setup, more than enough food production for two persons. Last week a lumberjack cut all 8 trees in the garden, resulting in a few m3 of fire wood, unlimited solar radiation for the planned solar wall, vegetable gardening and a few hundred Watt extra radiation on the windows plus the insight of how surprisingly big 130 m3 garden actually is. Later this month a gardening center will deliver perhaps 15 m2 garden soil and a few m3 compost for the raised beds and spend 400 euro on used scaffold planks to construct the 20 cm high raised beds. With the resulting garden one can safely cancel the fitness club subscription.
  • The city is still mostly ethnic Dutch, so thank God no guns necessary to prepare for ethnic conflict, unlike North-America.
  • Large 240 liter freezer for a couple of months worth of storage of garden produce. Insane low power consumption of 127 kwh/year, 123 hour buffer in case the grid goes down and insufficient solar radiation.
  • Curtain in the middle of the 10*4 m living room to be able to close one of two central heating radiators and further save on fuel during long winter evenings for 2-3 months (Dec-Feb).
  • In a few years time batteries will become available at $100-200/kwh storage cost. Five kwh storage would be enough to substantially reduce dependence on the grid.
  • Replace the cozy but thermal useless open fireplace (15% efficiency) with a ‘inzethaard‘ (85% efficiency) and have a few m3 fire wood in the garden as a reserve for very cold winters, if these were to happen ever again, which is doubtful. Or just in case Russia closes down fossil fuel supply to Europe after one stupid provocation too many. (difficult to translate the Dutch word ‘inzethaard’… insert hearth perhaps?)
  • And if everything fails you can still keep yourself warm for a few euro’s/month using electrically heated clothes.
  • Complete elimination of debt, including mortgage (which is easy to say at end fifties). With mortgage paid off and reducing/eliminating utility and food bills, necessary income would be reduced to 300 euro/month/person (health insurance for academics 77 euro, cable 50 euro, water, coffee, eggs, meat, municipal & property taxes), provided the car would be eliminated as well as travel. For the record, it is not the intention or even expectation to live off 300 euro/month, but just the worst case bare minimum. With say 6000 euro cash reserves, ‘you’re good’.
  • Do not spread negativity and pessimism around. Do not broadcast the message that ‘the end is neigh’. Only communicate on these matters with people who are open for the coming changes. Let the rest watch American Idol/Holland got Talent. If you consider free time life’s most valuable commodity, like we do and not opening bought boxes with ‘stuff’, than the coming crisis will not only have negative aspects.

Peak Oil is Now

John Hofmeister, the former president of Shell Oil, says: “the world is going to be oil short within the next three to four years” and confirms that Peak Oil is real and it is here now.

Supply or Demand? Peak Oil with Richard Heinberg

Heinberg finally admits that he did not see the fracking boom coming, causing us to make all sorts of unfunded statements ten years ago like: ‘Jan Modaal won’t be driving a car in ten years time’ (Jan Modaal is the Dutch version of Joe Sixpack).
Youtube: Richard Heinberg, senior fellow at The Post Carbon Institute, tells Erin how this particular boom bust cycle – with a tremendous surge in US domestic oil pro. Our lead story: This week Stanford said that it would divest all of its investments in coal-mining companies, becoming the wealthiest US university to pledge. Recorded February 25th, 2014 in Vancouver, BC Richard Heinberg speaks on his newest book, covering the short-term nature of the recent North American oil boo.

Don’t get distracted at 1:49.

Richard Heinberg: The Oil ‘Revolution’ Story Is Dead Wrong

Podcast with Chris Martenson talking with Richard Heinberg, March 2014.

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