Peak oil

World Oil Production via Hubbert Linearization of Production and Normalizations of Production

Publication date:
2012-01-30
First published in:
Energy Sources, Part B: Economics, Planning, and Policy
Authors:
W.B. Carlson
Abstract:

The Hubbert linearization and normalizations for the rate of change of production have been used to depict the trends of oil production via the logistic and Gompertz models. Estimated cumulative production based upon the Hubbert linearization of the oil history indicates a total ultimately recoverable resource (URR) for all liquids of 2.6 terabarrels (Tb). The Gompertz URR is projected to be near 4 Tb for all liquids including non-traditional sources. The normalization of the change of rate of oil production to the rate of production shows a peak potential of 95 million barrels production per day based on the projected URR of 2.6 Tb. The United States Geological Survey estimate of 2.5 Tb URR most closely approximates the projected 2.6 Tb URR.

Published in: Energy Sources, Part B: Economics, Planning, and Policy, Volume 7, Issue 2, January 2012, Pages 162-168
Available from: Taylor & Francis

The Modeling of World Oil Production Using Sigmoidal Functions—Update 2010

Publication date:
2011-04-25
First published in:
Energy Sources, Part B: Economics, Planning, and Policy
Authors:
W.B. Carlson
Abstract:

The depletion of the world oil resource based upon the logistic function has been updated and fitted to the recent history of oil production. The analysis uses data through the year 2009 and further introduces the asymmetric Gompertz function in order to account for additional oil resources. Results of these calculations depict a range of production rates under different resource limits. The characteristic curvature coefficients and the peak years of production are fitted to United States Geological Survey estimates of ultimately recoverable resource (URR) limits between 2.5 and 4.5 terabarrels (TB). The logistic fittings yield peak productions from 30.4 to 38.6 gigabarrels per year (GB/yr) for URRs from 2.5 to 3.0 TB in years 2008 through 2016. The lower probability of occurrence URRs (from 4.0 to 4.5 TB) inclusive of forms of oils yet to be introduced yield peak productions from 30.9 to 33.5 GB/yr during the years 2018 through 2023. The Gompertz function is used as the model for the lower probability URR production.

Published in: Energy Sources, Part B: Economics, Planning, and Policy, Volume 6, Issue 2, Pages 178–186
Available from: Informaworld

Life without Oil: Why we must Shift to a New Energy Future

Publication date:
2011-04-25
First published in:
Book
Authors:
S. Hallet, J. Wright
Abstract:

We have spent the last two centuries building a civilization on coal and the last century building it bigger still on oil. Fossil fuels have been the wellspring of our complex, glorious modern world, but they are about to run out. By the end of the 21st century, our oil and natural gas supplies will be virtually nonexistent, and limited coal supplies will be restricted to only a handful of countries.

In Life without Oil, environmental scientist Steve Hallett and veteran journalist John Wright make abundantly clear that we are at the crest of a remarkable two-hundred-year glitch in the history of civilization and are about to embark on the decline. Experts may argue about whether peak oil production has already arrived or will come in a decade or two, but in any case, as Hallett and Wright show, we must plan for a future without reliance on oil.

But successful planning depends on a realistic assessment of the facts about our current situation. To that end, Hallett and Wright describe how the petroleum interval of the last century, on which our civilization is based, fits in to the larger history of civilization. They describe the fate of civilizations and empires of the past that have come and gone based on their vital connection with the environment.

Turning to an even longer timeframe, the authors make a compelling case that the key determinant of our global economy is not so much the invisible hand of the marketplace but the inexorable laws of ecology. When it comes to the long term, nature will impose limits beyond which our economy cannot go. Despite increased emphasis on renewable and environmentally
friendly energy sources, our current obsession with growth is ultimately unsustainable. The authors foresee the coming decades as a time of much disruption and change of lifestyle, but in the end we may learn a wiser, more sustainable stewardship of our natural resources.
This timely, sobering, yet constructive discussion of energy and ecology offers a realistic vision of the near future and many important lessons about the limits of our resources.

Published by: Prometheus Books, ISBN 978-1616144012, 375 pages.
Available from: Amazon

New Tourism in a New Society Arises from Peak Oil

Publication date:
2011-04-25
First published in:
Tourismos,
Authors:
J. Leigh
Abstract:

Mass international tourism has thrived on the abundant and cheap supply of energy, and this may be about to change as the world moves towards “Peak Oil”. The resultant scarcity and high price of all energy fuels will produce changes in human activities across the board, and specifically in tourism. In this looming transitional era, which has probably already arrived, tourism needs to make some dramatic changes to harmonize with the new realities of a post-energy world and its new society.

Published in: Tourismos, Volume 6, Issue 1,
Available from: Tourismos

Implications of Peak Oil for Industrialized Societies

Publication date:
2008-05-06
First published in:
Bulletin of Science, Technology & Society
Authors:
G. McPherson, J. Weltzin
Abstract:

The world passed the halfway point of oil supply in 2005. World demand for oil likely will severely outstrip supply in 2008, leading to increasingly higher oil prices. Consequences are likely to include increasing gasoline prices, rapidly increasing inflation, and subsequently a series of increasingly severe recessions followed by a worldwide economic depression. Consequences may include, particularly in industrialized countries such as the United States, massive unemployment, economic collapse, and chaos.

Published in: Bulletin of Science, Technology & Society, Volume 28, Issue 3, May 2008, Pages 187-191
Available from: http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0270467608316098

Global energy crunch: How different parts of the world would react to a peak oil scenario

Publication date:
2010-04-27
First published in:
Energy Policy
Authors:
J. Friedrichs
Abstract:

Peak oil theory predicts that oil production will soon start a terminal decline. Most authors imply that no adequate alternate resource and technology will be available to replace oil as the backbone resource of industrial society. This article uses historical cases from countries that have gone through a similar experience as the best available analytical strategy to understand what will happen if the predictions of peak oil theorists are right. The author is not committed to a particular version of peak oil theory, but deems the issue important enough to explore how various parts of the world should be expected to react. From the historical record he is able to identify predatory militarism, totalitarian retrenchment, and socioeconomic adaptation as three possible trajectories.

Published in: Energy Policy, article in press
Available from: ScienceDirect

The Impending Peak and Decline of Petroleum Production: an Underestimated Challenge for Conservation of Ecological Integrity

Publication date:
2010-04-20
First published in:
Conservation Biology
Authors:
B. Czucz et al
Abstract:

In the last few decades petroleum has been consumed at a much faster pace than new reserves have been discovered. The point at which global oil extraction will attain a peak ("peak oil") and begin a period of unavoidable decline is approaching. This eventuality will drive fundamental changes in the quantity and nature of energy flows through the human economic system, which probably will be accompanied by economic turmoil, political conflicts, and a high level of social tension. Besides being a geological and economic issue, peak oil is also a fundamental concern as it pertains to ecological systems and conservation because economics is a subsystem of the global ecosystem and changes in human energy-related behaviors can lead to a broad range of effects on natural ecosystems, ranging from overuse to abandonment. As it becomes more difficult to meet energy demands, environmental considerations may be easily superseded. Given the vital importance of ecosystems and ecosystem services in a postpetroleum era, it is crucially important to wisely manage our ecosystems during the transition period to an economy based on little or no use of fossil fuels. Good policies can be formulated through awareness and understanding gained from scenario-based assessments. Presently, most widely used global scenarios of environmental change do not incorporate resource limitation, including those of the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Considering the potential magnitude of the effects of peak oil on society and nature, the development of resource-constrained scenarios should be addressed immediately. Ecologists and conservation biologists are in an important position to analyze the situation and provide guidance, yet the topic is noticeably absent from ecological discussions. We urge politicians, corporate chief executives, thought leaders, and citizens to consider this problem seriously because it is likely to develop into one of the key environmental issues of the 21st century.

Published in: Conservation Biology, article in press
Available from: Interscience

Peak oil and industrial adaptation

Publication date:
2007-10-01
First published in:
Environmental Quality Management
Authors:
W.W. Reinhardt
Abstract:

Global energy markets are continuing to experience an increase in petroleum prices. From a relatively low $20 per barrel in 2002, prices reached as high as $78 per barrel in 2006. During this time, there has been increasing discussion of “Peak Oil”—the concept that global oil production is peaking and beginning an irrevocable decline.

Even among those who do not consider Peak Oil a near-term problem that merits concerted action, there is a growing consensus that prices are trending higher and that increasing proportions of the world’s conventional oil1 supply will be coming from nations that are members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), especially those in the Middle East. The world is entering a period where growing global demand, OPEC dominance of oil production, and numerous geopolitical threats to supplies have combined to create great uncertainty about the future cost and security of oil.

Meanwhile, domestic natural gas production is lagging behind demand growth despite major demand destruction in certain U.S. industrial sectors. Major expansions of liquid natural gas imports, largely from OPEC countries, are being proposed to fill the supply gap. With these energy supply problems in mind, I review some predictions concerning both oil and natural gas production peaks and discuss how these peaks would impact industry.

Published in: Environmental Quality Management, Volume 17, Issue 1, October 2007, Pages 83 - 90
Available from: Wiley Interscience

Peak globalization: Climate change, oil depletion and global trade

Publication date:
2009-12-15
First published in:
Ecological Economics
Authors:
F. Curtis
Abstract:

The global trade in goods depends upon reliable, inexpensive transportation of freight along complex and long-distance supply chains. Global warming and peak oil undermine globalization by their effects on both transportation costs and the reliable movement of freight. Countering the current geographic pattern of comparative advantage with higher transportation costs, climate change and peak oil will thus result in peak globalization, after which the volume of exports will decline as measured by ton-miles of freight. Policies designed to mitigate climate change and peak oil are very unlikely to change this result due to their late implementation, contradictory effects and insufficient magnitude. The implication is that supply chains will become shorter for most products and that production of goods will be located closer to where they are consumed.

Published in: Ecological Economics, Volume 69, Issue 2, 15 December 2009, Pages 427-434
Available from: ScienceDirect

Urban form and long-term fuel supply decline: A method to investigate the peak oil risks to essential activities

Publication date:
2010-04-09
First published in:
Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice
Authors:
S. Krumdieck et al
Abstract:

The issue of a peak in world oil supply has become a mainstream concern over the past several years. The petroleum geology models of post-peak oil production indicate supply declines from 1.5% to 6% per year. Travel requires fuel energy, but current transportation planning models do not include the impacts of constrained fuel supply on private travel demand. This research presents a method to assess the risk to activities due to a constrained fuel supply relative to projected unconstrained travel demand. The method assesses the probability of different levels of fuel supply over a given planning horizon, then calculates impact due to the energy supply not meeting the planning expectations. A new travel demand metric which characterizes trips as essential, necessary, and optional to wellbeing is used in the calculation. A case study explores four different urban forms developed from different future growth options for the urban development strategy of Christchurch, New Zealand to 2041. Probable fuel supply availability was calculated, and the risk to transport activities in the 2041 transport model was assessed. The results showed all the urban forms had significantly reduced trip numbers and lower energy mode distributions from the current planning projections, but the risk to activities differed among the planning options. Density is clearly one of the mitigating factors, but density alone does not provide a solution to reduced energy demand. The method clearly shows how risk to participation in activities is lower for an urban form which has a high degree of human powered and public transport access to multiple options between residential and commercial/industrial/service destinations. This analysis has led to new thinking about adaptation and reorganization of urban forms as a strategy for energy demand reduction rather than just densification.

Published in: Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, article in Press
Available from: ScienceDirect

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