[ad#post_ad]Peak oil is the theory and study of the time when global oil production reaches its maximum rate and then declines terminally, despite growing demand. Peak oil is a fact of nature that either will shortly occur or is presently occurring; oil is a finite resource and at some point remaining reserves will decline and not be able to keep up with demand.
It is a very compelling reason to move towards electrification the automobile.
Generally large western democratic governments do not publish reports on the study of peak oil or its consequence, for fear of causing public distress. However a document produced by the German military was recently leaked to the media via the German outlet Der Spiegel.
This document was never meant to be seen by the public and outlines some very dramatic, drastic, and sobering consequences of peak oil.
The report claims there is “some probability that peak oil will occur around the year 2010 and that the impact on security is expected to be felt 15 to 30 years later.”
Analysis of the report has led to seven key findings.
- Oil will determine power:
Oil producing nations will gain considerable power in the international landscape and will use this power to expand their domestic and foreign policies in their own best interests.
- Increasing importance of oil exporters:
Oil importing countries will have to compete with each other to obtain oil from oil exporters. This will allow the oil exporting countries to implement their political, economic, and ideological goals on dependent nations including the use of aggressive and assertive tactics.
- Politics in place of the market:
The global oil market will retract from free-trade mechanisms and degenerate into two-way contracts between oil producing and oil importing nations.
- Market failures:
The report paints a bleak picture of the global economy as oil shortages develop. Since all goods depend on oil to transport them, shortages and price escalations of vital goods will arise. “In the medium term the global economic system and every market-oriented national economy would collapse,” the study authors conclude.
- Relapse into planned economy:
Since all economic sectors are reliant on oil, peak oil could lead to complete or partial failure of all markets. This could lead to goverments’ rationing of vital goods.
- Global chain reaction:
There will not be enough time to restructure oil supplies among dependent nations. Since those nations are so closely intertwined, including Germany, economic crises or crashes will rapidly will spread throughout the developed world.
- Crisis of political legitimacy:
So potent is the grip of oil dependence, the report predicts that it is possible even democracy itself won’t be able to survive peak oil. The would create openings for extremist forms of government, intense political distress, and even open violent conflict in the streets.
Clearly these predictions are drastic, but it is important to take note that this report wasn’t written by some fringe psychopathic recluse, but by the military of one of the largest democratic economies in the world.
I’m not sure what I can do about it, but hopefully buying a Chevy Volt is a first step in the right direction. Let’s hope we have enough time and ingenuity to avert this potential outcome.
Source (Der Spiegel)
This entry was posted on Monday, September 6th, 2010 at 6:34 am and is filed under Environment, Fuel, Politics. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.