The End of Oil






Oil faces three major dilemmas. Most importantly, all fossil fuels are by their very nature limited in supply; as far as oil is concerned, the resulting dilemma is best known as the question of peak oil. Further, much of the oil consumed by affluent countries such as the United States is extracted in countries that are rather unstable politically, such as some of the members of the OPEC. 


The End of Oil
The oil trade is therefore prone to become intertwined with international relations, although the nature of this interplay is highly controversial, with some citing oil as a reason for conflicts such as the Iraq War and others denying such claims. Finally, since the burning of fossil fuels releases carbon dioxide that was previously locked in the ground, humanity's reliance on oil may contribute to global warming.

Oil depletion is the decline in oil production of a well, oil field, or geographic area. The Hubbert peak theory makes predictions of production rates based on prior discovery rates and anticipated production rates. Hubbert curves predict that the production curves of non-renewing resources approximate a bell curve. Thus, according to this theory, when the peak of production is passed, production rates enter an irreversible decline.

The United States Energy Information Administration predicted in 2006 that world consumption of oil will increase to 98.3 million barrels per day (15,630,000 m3/d) (mbd) in 2015 and 118 million barrels per day in 2030. With 2009 world oil consumption at 84.4 mbd, reaching the projected 2015 level of consumption would represent an average annual increase between 2009 and 2015 of 2.7% per year. More details