The coming liquid fuel crisis

November 17, 2010 • Climate Change & Mitigation, Daily Email Recap

Thanks to Jennie Goldie of Sustainable Population Australia for her article, “The Coming Liquid Fuel Crisis.” She based this paper on information from the Peak Oil Conference last month.

We face a liquid fuel crisis in two to five years. That was the stark message from an international conference on peak oil in Washington DC that I attended last month.

It will be far worse than the 1973 and 1979 oil shocks that induced panic, disorientation and insecurity. Back then stock market declines followed big hikes in fuel prices. This time we can expect ever-rising fuel prices accompanied by annually deepening recession, increasing inflation and unemployment, and a decline in world trade.

Last time, the crises resolved themselves as oil production and trade were resumed. This time, there will not be enough oil to resume business as usual. Despite a decrease in demand from OECD countries, overall demand continues to rise as global population climbs inexorably from 6.8 towards 9.2 billion and newly emerging economies expect their share of the global resource pie.

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