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Posts tagged “Peak Lite”

By Robert Rapier on Sep 30, 2012 with 22 responses

Hofmeister: A Difficult Decade Ahead For Oil Prices and Supplies

Potential for Expansion of Global Oil Production

I, along with my editor Sam Avro, recently conducted a broad-ranging interview with John Hofmeister, former President of Shell Oil. The topics touched upon included future oil supplies and prices, climate change, U.S. energy policy, and topics familiar to R-Squared Energy readers such at Peak Lite and the Long Recession.

I will present this interview in a series of stories covering some of the various topics. In this first story, I will discuss Mr. Hofmeister’s detailed answer to the question, “What do you feel is the potential for expanding global oil production, and the time frames?”

Readers my recall that I have put forth a pair of hypothesis with respect to future oil production and prices. One is called Peak Lite. (See also: Five Misconceptions About Peak Oil)


By Robert Rapier on Nov 7, 2011 with 56 responses

Five Misconceptions About Peak Oil

I have just returned from the annual ASPO conference in Washington, D.C. This was only my 2nd ASPO conference; the first one I attended was in 2008 in Sacramento. There were many familiar faces; some of whom I had previously met and some I only knew by reputation. The mood seemed remarkably calmer than in 2008. That year, oil prices were just coming down from record highs, a pair of hurricanes were causing spot gasoline shortages, and the economy was headed into the toilet. The general mood was that things were rapidly unraveling. Three years later, the long-term outlook isn’t really any different, but I think some who predicted imminent doom are starting to change their views on how things… Continue»

By Robert Rapier on Jan 10, 2011 with 36 responses

When Economic Recovery Collides with Flat Oil Production

A theme that I commonly discuss in articles and presentations is the problem of economic recovery when oil prices are high. If the market is well-supplied and there is ample excess oil production capacity, oil prices tend to be moderate and stable, and economic growth can proceed without much headwind. However, the world has now had essentially flat oil production for several years in the face of historically high prices. This implies — and I believe it is true — that there are serious supply constraints within the system. I believe that some countries do still possess spare capacity, but that the overall amount isn’t large. I think if there was much excess capacity, we would see countries taking advantage… Continue»

By Robert Rapier on Jul 12, 2010 with 29 responses

BP, Exxon, and Peak Lite

My vacation is over, so it’s back to work. I am still working on the followup to the MixAlco story, but there is a lot of material to digest. I am exchanging e-mails with Professor Holtzapple just now, trying to get answers to questions around the energy balance and overall conversion efficiency. As soon as those are resolved, I will publish the story. One of the things I try to offer readers is an objective, timely analysis of happenings in the world of energy. For example, take the recent stories I wrote on BP. Shortly after the accident in the Gulf of Mexico, I wrote The Wake Up Call on the BP Drilling Disaster in which I predicted huge political… Continue»

By Robert Rapier on Dec 3, 2009 with no responses

Presentations from the Orlando Energy Conference

The slides from all of the presenters at the recent Orlando Energy Conference are now all available online: The Economics of Alternative Energy Sources and Globalization: The Road Ahead Here is the link directly to my presentation: An Overview of Global Energy Issues Here are several of my slides, which give a flavor of my presentation: The primary thrust of my message is that we are looking at a potentially serious energy crisis in the not too distant future as oil begins to deplete faster than renewables can fill the void. Globally, India and China will have a huge influence over the oil markets, driving prices eventually higher than where they were last summer. Times will continue to be very… Continue»

By Robert Rapier on Mar 24, 2009 with no responses

The Next Five Years

Peak Lite and the Current Oil Picture A few years ago, after spending a lot of time thinking about peak oil, and then watching the price of oil break out of its historical trading range and head higher, the idea of Peak Lite came to me. Over time the price of oil had bounced between $10 and $30 a barrel, but about 5 years ago it broke from that pattern and started the steady climb that culminated in $147/bbl last summer. I had been having various debates about whether we were or weren’t at the global peak in oil production (I was taking the ‘not yet but soon’ position), but it started to become clear to me that we didn’t… Continue»

By Robert Rapier on Feb 23, 2009 with 1 response

Peak Demand Before Peak Oil?

There has been a lot of talk in the media lately about the possibility that oil demand will peak soon (or has peaked already), which will render a geologically-induced peak in oil production irrelevant. In other words, peak oil is a non-issue because people won’t be demanding as much oil as can be produced (which is true presently). In fact, I just did a Google search of my blog, and the phrase “Peak Demand” shows up 239 times over the past 2 years. Regular reader Benjamin Cole was beating the peak demand meme long before I heard the media start to pick it up. (Here he is arguing this point two years ago). Over the weekend I saw a new… Continue»

By Robert Rapier on Nov 12, 2008 with no responses

World Energy Outlook 2008 Released

Today the International Energy Agency (IEA) released their much anticipated (and previously leaked) World Energy Outlook 2008. The full report costs €150, but there is a lot of publicly available information on their website. They have a presentation for the press, an executive summary, and key graphs available. I will comment in more detail after I have had time to read through the report. A preliminary look appears to me to be a full-fledged endorsement of the possibilities of peak lite. Reuters has more on that: Credit crisis adds to risk of oil supply crunch The agency’s World Energy Outlook for 2008 stopped short of sounding the alarm that oil supplies may have peaked, but highlighted obstacles to accessing new… Continue»

By Robert Rapier on Oct 1, 2008 with no responses

Five Reasons Oil is Headed to $250

Any time I write about investing, I always stress the long-term. Short-term fluctuations don’t drive my investment decisions. I try to see 5 or 10 years into the future, and position myself accordingly. This is a big part of why I started to shift money into oil beginning in 2002; I felt like I could see the supply/demand handwriting on the wall. My long-term strategy is why I don’t get too excited about oil shooting to $147 or correcting back to below $100. The only question for me is “Will oil be higher or lower in 5 years?” At no point since 2002 have I felt like the answer to that question is “Lower.” I can’t see any combination of… Continue»

By Robert Rapier on Jun 14, 2008 with no responses

Suggestions for ASPO Talk?

I have been asked to give a talk at ASPO this year in Sacramento. Ditto last year for the International ASPO Conference in Ireland, but I couldn’t make it (even though I lived in Scotland at the time, I couldn’t work it in). However, this time it looks like my schedule will allow me to attend. The theme is The Energy Challenge – The Future Starts Now. Here is the Agenda Overview. As you can see, I got tapped to talk about fertilizer. I contacted ASPO and asked them how it came about that I got assigned to talk about fertilizer, and they said this was essentially a placeholder, and I could change my topic. So, I plan to. The… Continue»