Industrial Insight

New peaks for oil… | March 7, 2013

http://www.economist.com/blogs/graphicdetail/2013/03/focus-0

Peak oil

Mar 5th 2013, 17:07 by Economist.com
THE theory of peak oil, the idea that global crude production may be at or near its limit, is based on the work of M. King Hubbert, a geologist working for Shell in the 1950s. His prediction that oil output in the lower 48 states of America would peak by around 1970 has been adopted and expanded by hydrocarbon doomsayers, who reckon that global production has peaked and the world is running out of oil. But Mr Hubbert’s curve, which neatly fitted American oil production and rightly predicted a peak in 1970, may need to be redrawn according to analysis by BP, a British oil company. The technology that has unlocked huge volumes of gas from American shale beds can also been used to extract oil. As drilling for oil from shale intensifies America looks set for another peak in the next couple of decades. Mr Hubbert’s curve and the peak-oil brigade look out of date.

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