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Peak Oil - Jun 7

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Many more articles are available through the Energy Bulletin homepage


Why Are Most Prominent Peak Oil Authors Men?

Matt Savinar, Life After The Oil Crash
This lengthy but fascinating (and often disturbing) article entitled "Evolutionary Psychology, Memes, and the Origins of War" indirectly answers the question, "Why are most prominent Peak Oil authors men?" Excerpt:

Another evolved psychological trait is the drug-like reward
many people get from intense attention. The evolutionary
origin of the attention-reward pathway is due to the way
social primates measure status. A certain amount of status
is required before a hominid male becomes attractive to
females.

Men's attractiveness is largely correlated with their status or with characteristics likely to lead to status such as humor, intelligence, speaking ability, athletic prowess, political dexterity, or business acumen. Given these factors, it makes sense us guys would disproportionately choose to stand on our Peak Oil soap boxes. (As I do with this site.) If we are effective at "sounding the alarm" or offering seemingly workable normative mitigation agendas, the prospect of increased social status (attractiveness) awaits us. Typically, this increase in status flows from attention received via interviews in the media, public speaking engagements, leadership roles in politics, acclaim for well written articles, book deals, etc. These evolutionary mechanisms (or God's gifts, depending on your belief system) are as much at work within the subconscious of the local activist writing an article for his town's newspaper as they are within the mind of a nationally known author doing an interview on CNN. As both individuals  are members of the same species, their central genetic wiring is virtually indistinguishable.
(5 Jun 2006)
Gender and Peak Oil seems to be coming up a lot lately. I sometimes think that evolutionary psychology oversimplifies the dynamic systems which make life tick -- but Matt makes some very good points here, worth a read. -AF


Roger Bezdek on the Hirsch followup

Jason Brenno, Global Public Media
Roger Bezdek, president of Management Information Services Inc. (MISI) and coauthor of Peaking Of World Oil Production: Impacts, Mitigation, & Risk Management (the Hirsch report) talks with GPM correspondent Jason Brenno about the followup to the Hirsch report: Economic Impacts of Liquid Fuel Mitigation Options.
(3 Jun 2006)
Berkely comments on The Oil Drum:

Bezdek keeps sounding like an optimist of the Daniel Yergin type ("shale oil will save us") - until you listen to what he is saying carefully. He's talking about investments in the trillions of dollars that have to be carried out on a non-market timeframe long before they are obviously needed. The interviewer, who is very sharp, doesn't bother to ask where the political impetus for this is ever going to come from.

This is the best deconstruction of the There-Is-Plenty-of-Nonconventional-Oil argument I have seen, since instead of handwaving of the Kunstler type ("nothing will save us") it patiently and sympathetically reduces the optimist scenario to a financial absurdity.

(hat tip LATOC) -AF


Russia: 'Era of cheap fuel is over'

Christopher Hope, The Telegraph
Russia has served a double warning over the price of oil and intervention to block attempts by its energy firms to move into EU markets.

Viktor Khristenko, Russian's energy minister and guardian of 5pc of the world's oil reserves, declared that motorists and business would have to learn to live with expensive fuel because "the era of cheap hydrocarbons is over". He also made it clear that any intervention by EU states if Russian firms sought to buy their European rivals would be regarded as unfriendly.

Russia has served a double warning over the price of oil and intervention to block attempts by its energy firms to move into EU markets.

Viktor Khristenko, Russian's energy minister and guardian of 5pc of the world's oil reserves, declared that motorists and business would have to learn to live with expensive fuel because "the era of cheap hydrocarbons is over". He also made it clear that any intervention by EU states if Russian firms sought to buy their European rivals would be regarded as unfriendly.
(6 Jun 2006)


20 new fields needed every year in the UK

Chris Vernon, The Oil Drum UK
The Scotsman today reports on a new study by Professor Alex Kemp and Linda Stephen of Aberdeen University on the prospects for the UK Continental Shelf (UKCS) until 2035.

Professor Kemp, a leading oil expert with the university's Department of Economics, said that a "striking feature" of the prospects for undeveloped fields was their relatively small size, with the average size of the probable and possible fields estimated at under 15 million barrels of oil equivalent. He said: "The long-term future of the UKCS depends on the successful development of large numbers of small fields and enhanced oil and gas recovery schemes. The remaining reserves are large but they are mostly located in relatively small accumulations."

(5 Jun 2006)
Chris points out that Kemp's assumed decline rates are unrealistically low, compared to the declines which we've already seen in the North Sea. -AF

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