Italy gears up for international peak oil conference
San Francisco, CA (PRWEB) June 23, 2006 -- “The John D. Rockefeller of the 21st century is a Russian named Putin,” says Chris Sanders, a London economist and speaker at the upcoming fifth international the Association for the Study of Peak Oil & Gas (ASPO) conference.
Oil- and gas-based speculations like Sanders’ will be flowing in abundance at the July 18-19 event in Pisa, which is attracting hundreds of peak oil experts, scientists and enthusiasts from around the world. Organizers say that excitement surrounding the fifth annual ASPO conference has been building steadily, drawing more attention from governments and media, and reflecting the growing alarm of a world that appears to be closing in on the peak itself.
“ASPO-5 is the culmination of a year-long collaboration,” says Ugo Bardi, professor of chemistry at the University of Florence and lead organizer of the conference, set in the Mediterranean seaside park of San Rossore, three miles from Pisa. “We’re bringing together an incredible group of experts and scientists along with growing numbers of individuals and government officials who are concerned about energy depletion.”
Featuring a veritable who’s who of the peak oil movement, the conference is expected to make news with fresh assessments of the world’s oil reserves and production capacity, new insights into the likely impacts of peak oil (as well as gas and coal), and creative strategies for negotiating the ride down the far side of Hubbert’s curve.
Colin Campbell, oil geologist and honorary chairman of ASPO will kick off the conference with a keynote presentation “The Age of Oil in Perspective.” Says Campbell: “The second half of the age of oil is dawning, and it will be marked by the decline of oil and all that depends upon it.”
ASPO President Kjell Aleklett will examine the world’s growing addiction to oil--“It’s time to sober up,” he says--while Richard Heinberg, author of the popular peak oil primer “The Party’s Over,” will outline a global plan to avert the worst effects of global energy depletion by asking nations to adopt a belt-tightening “oil depletion protocol.”
A number of speakers including Chris Sanders of Sanders Research Associates will explore the political and economic dimensions of shrinking global energy supplies. Sanders will give a talk about “the war for energy and the end of free markets.” Dennis Meadows, co-author of the landmark 1972 book “Limits to Growth,” will explain why declining oil output will put the breaks on conventional economic growth. Later, Meadows will lead participants in a game using “system dynamics” to simulate various resource-depletion scenarios (attendance is limited).
Others set to speak include Petroleum Review Editor Chris Skrebowski (“Peak oil: the emerging reality”), Geologist Jean Laherrere (“Uncertainty in data and forecasts”), author Andrew McKillop (“The impossibility of market solutions to peak oil”), and former oil man Jeremy Leggett, who will address “Peak oil, climate change, and the daunting arithmetic of carbon fuels.” Robert Hirsch of SAIC will arrive in Pisa with an update to his path-breaking study, “Peaking of World Oil Production: Impacts, Mitigation, and Risk Management.” Sixteen other notable speakers will round out the information-packed two days.
Support for the conference provided by the University of Firenze, the Tuscan Regional Government, Pisa County, the Foundation Cassa di Risparmio and companies including GE and Italbrevetti.
Conference organizer Bardi says he’s been impressed with the wide-ranging interest in ASPO-5. “I’ve gotten inquiries from China, Indonesia, Australia, South America and Japan, in addition to the usual European countries and the United States. We will have official representatives from the Italian government as well as representatives from the European Union--more than ever before.”
Dr. Bardi noted the significant participation of major oil companies and suppliers, including the Italian oil giant ENI and General Electric’s oil and gas division; Leonardo Maugeri, a senior vice president at ENI, has agreed to speak. Dr. Bardi is expecting a strong turnout by media outlets, particularly from Europe and North America. (A dedicated media room with Internet connections will be available at the conference for registered members of the press.)
Colin Campbell says Pisa is an ideal setting for a peak oil conference. “It’s where Galileo demonstrated that the earth revolved around the sun, making it an appropriate place in which to consider the constraints of nature.” Organizers also favored Pisa because of the Tuscan regional government’s keen interest in energy issues. Indeed, the government is sponsoring its own energy conference at San Rossore immediately following the ASPO-5 event.
After Monday registration at the Grand Hotel Duomo, the mayor of Pisa will host a reception for ASPO-5 attendees at nearby City Hall, to be followed by a limited-seating showing of the film “The Power of Community.” Conference-goers will receive a free copy of “The Oil Age” poster created by SF Informatics in association with Global Public Media.
As part of the conference’s exploration of sustainable energy, ASPO-5 attendees will be treated to a display of cutting-edge electric vehicles, including an innovative electric scooter by Vectrix. “You can charge electrical vehicles directly from renewable sources,” says Bardi. “So you can laugh at peak oil when it comes.”
The 5th International Conference on Oil and Gas Depletion
Sponsor: The Association for the Study of Peak Oil and Gas (ASPO)
Dates: 18-19 July 2006
Location: San Rossore, Italy (near Pisa)
Conference Web site: tinyurl.com/c9b38
Conference Contact: Prof. Ugo Bardi, Department of Chemistry, University of Florence
Press Access: Katie Buckley
ASPO web site: www.peakoil.net
Italian section of ASPO: www.aspoitalia.net
The Association for the Study of Peak Oil & Gas (ASPO) is a network of scientists, affiliated with institutions and universities, having an interest in determining the date and impact of the peak and decline of the world's production of oil and gas, due to resource constraints.
About SF Informatics
SF Informatics is a not for profit organization representing a group of concerned individuals committed to researching and communicating critical ecological and societal trends worldwide. The Oil Age poster is available at www.oilposter.org. All profits from sales go toward the free distribution of posters to educational institutions.