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World running out of time for oil alternatives

Anna Mudeva, Reuters via Common Dreams
PETTEN, Netherlands – The world could run out of time to develop cleaner alternatives to oil and other fossil fuels before depletion drives prices through the roof, a leading Dutch energy researcher said on Thursday.

Ton Hoff, manager of the Energy Research Center of the Netherlands, said it could take decades to make alternatives affordable to the point where they can be used widely, although high oil prices were already stimulating such research.

“If we run out of fossil fuels — by the time the oil price hits 100 dollars or plus, people will be screaming for alternatives, but whether they will be available at that moment of time — that’s my biggest worry,” Hoff said.
(19 August 2005)

Peak Oil Crisis: Peak Oil & Car Pools

Editorial, Falls Church News-Press
If we had to rank essential uses for oil, transporting a single person to work would have to fall somewhere near the bottom. At the top would be fueling the tractors that plant and harvest our food. Food transport trucks, and a long list of other kinds of trucks and buses, would be listed before we get to the family car.

When oil depletion comes, getting people out of their single person car will have to be one of our top priorities to mitigate even the early stages of the crisis.
(18-24 August 2005 issue)

When the Oil Pan’s Empty . . .
Bye-bye Conspicuous Consumption

Paul K. Haeder, DissidentVoice
The fix is in for the extractors, who envision — each and every one of them standing proudly on their third 6,000-square-foot homes and plucky yachts — a world that believes two barrels of oil expended to extract one dirty, rotten barrel is sustainable.

With our 1.5 party system mucking up anything sustainable (.5 being a few Republicans and Democrats who can think abstractly and without the 1.0’s Christian Scientology War Party determining energy policy based on a six-month long view and a cornucopian view that the earth has unlimited energy and food for, oh, let’s be conservative and say another 6 billion people), the Bush-Pelosi Mister Rogers Neighborhood is one where global warming, climate change and wasted billions of greenbacks and a trillion here and there will see the world getting ever so closer to the abbreviated version of The Long Emergency.

The July 28, 2005 House vote, 275 to 156, marked the beginning of the long slide into chaos created by the billions in tax incentives for the Exxons of the world to go off and play at drilling for unlikely deposits of oil hundreds of fathoms underneath the polluted deep sea.

They’ve greased the skids for the next nuclear age. They’ve put humanity’s eggs all in the basket of radioactive waste that has half-lives of tens of millions of years, and pushed for those lung-sapping coal-fired plants that add that useful element, mercury, to our minimum daily requirement. …
(17 August, 2005)
Mr Haeders writing might be described as less-laid-back Kunstler.-LJ

Gas Tax Increases Revisited

Prof. Goose, The Oil Drum
…The real conundrum, in my opinion, is how to destroy demand so as to come in for a soft landing, even if we are heading towards a 1979 to the googol (ed: not google the search engine, and googol is the correct spelling as I just learned in the comments) power. (no pun intended, I assure you.)

I advocate taxing gasoline now. Abruptly. Quickly. Severely. Better to bend the shit out of the economy now than completely break it later.
(18 August 2005)
I still agree with Prof. Goose on this, delay can only increase the pain. -LJ

New Zealand Government-sponsored consultant report prepares NZ for oil shortage emergencies
Bruce Thomson, Energy Resources e-list

There is a very interesting report commissioned by the NZ Government, in
response to recommendations from the International Energy Agency to be prepared for oil shortage emergencies:
“Oil Demand Restraint Options for New Zealand”, Prepared for NZ Ministry of Economic Development, June 2005, by COVEC consultants

The report include communications strategy to get the public on board. It includes setup of administrative authorities, and their roles.

It covers scenarios from minor “7% or less”, to medium “7-25%”, to quite major “greater than 25% cut in supply”.

The report can be viewed or downloaded at
as a 105 page .pdf file.
(17 August 2005)

Kunstler Interview
Leonard Lopate Show, WNYC
James Howard Kunstler warns that the world is unprepared for a post-oil future in The Long Emergency: Surviving the End of the Oil Age, Climate Change, and Other Converging Catastrophes of the Twenty-first Century.
(17 August 2005)