Friday, March 17, 2006

Peak Oil

Peak oil is the point in time when extraction of oil from the earth reaches its highest point and then begins to decline. The demand for oil will keep increasing as the population keeps increasing irrespective of this decline---each day will have less oil than the previous day---resulting in a catastrophe. It is difficult to say with certainty when peak oil will be reached until after the fact. Many experts say we have already reached the peak. Others say not yet, but within the next few years. US peaked its oil production in 1971---30 years after its oil exploration peaked, and so is that of many Euorpean countries. The world oil exxploration peaked in the early 70s! Our modern day lifestyle is almost completely dependent on oil. (Pesticides, plastics, vehicles, medicines, roads, toys, clothes---you name it and most likely it will be dependent on oil). Sustaining such an oil-based lifestyle will be impossible after peak oil.

The energy usage curve of history! (x-axis is year)

A few links (Google "peak oil" for more):
Community Solution (includes a few presentations)
Life After the Oil Crash,, Energy Bulletin

What is India doing about Peak Oil? (Many countries are thinking about it aand are already acting on it, most notably the European countries). In India, the vehicle manufacturing sector is expanding and the number of vehicles(of all types) is exploding---put this in perspective with Peak Oil. Further, the much touted 10% economic growth is oil dependent. Shouldn't we working towards efficient public/shared modes of transport/renewable energy/sustainable growth and minimize our oil dependence as much as possible? Unfortunately the mainstream media coverage in India for this issue is near zero!
More importantly, are we doing anything about Peak Oil in our individual capacity? I have read, attended seminars, watched documentaries and spent a lot of time thinking and discussing it, but have not done anything about it---other than consciously trying to use the bus and ride my bicycle---but hopefully soon I will. Will you?

Related link: World Institute of Sustainable Energy

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Corporate Finance said...
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