The spike around 1980 was brought down again with nuclear energy and oil discoveries in the North Sea and Mexico. Now it is rising again, as a consequence of peak conventional oil. It remains to be seen if the shale oil/gas development can change much.
Aucott uses the phase shift ice –> water –> vapor as a model to understand what is happening in the world of oil prices. From the graph it becomes apparent that something happened in 2005, namely the vanishing of oil price elasticity and abrupt increase of oil prices. Aucott suggests that we are witnessing a phase shift in the economic system. It is time that economists, who know all about water, should start to interest themselves in vapor.