OILPRICE tells us that Our Oil Future may not be as Bleak as it Seems

Assessing this graph from the International Energy Agency (IEA), OILPRICE concludes that there is an enormous amount of petroleum in the ground even if the IEA data is out by 50%.


                                            Source: OILPRICE


The additional petroleum will come from the extraction of shale gas as well as the conversion of gas and coal to liquid petroleum to power transportation.  Moreover, technological change in recovery techniques will enable the oil industry to more efficiently apply secondary and tertiary recovery of existing reserves.  The combination should assure a steady oil supply for the rest of the century.

In OILPRCE’s words:

Comparing the yellow block of production to date with the sum of the others is a shock to many doomers – er, peak oil believers.  Actually another whole block is missing, the secondary and tertiary recovery from the produced block.  Factually, the development of secondary and tertiary recovery and the application is a function of wells operated by the free world majors and not much by the national oil companies.  Over time the MENA, Other Conventional Oil, Deepwater and Ultra Deepwater, and Artic blocks will have secondary and tertiary recovery, too.  And recovery technology is going to get better.

Note: MENA is “Middle East and North Africa”


Forecasted high oil prices in future should only act to make this outcome more likely.  Higher prices will encourage greater supply through new exploration and technological change as oil and gas and coal companies seek higher profits.  By this logic, instead of global warming and peak oil being a curse to the fossil fuel industry they instead become a blessing.   The effect would be to bring more petroleum-based transportation fuel to market at the  same time that we can expect a large influx of alternative biofuels.

What do you readers think?


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