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February 17, 2004


Mike Millikin

That's a bit apocalyptic. I recommend Kenneth Deffeyes' book "Hubbert's Peak" -- titled after the geologist who projected this situation in 1956. Deffeyes is a Princeton professor(emeritus)and former oilman (Shell) and provides a very accesible explanation of the science, math and oil exploration/engineering behind the oil (and gas) situation.
Bottom line -- we need to move with determination and focus to make the inevitable transition away from fossil fuels as painless as possible. That's going to require a combination of science/technology, public policy leadership and consumer demand to work. Nice marketing challenge. :-)

David Foster

Far too depressing a long-run scenario. If things start getting really bad, much of the present opposition to nuclear power will evaporate.

The immediate issue is, I think, likely to be natural gas rather than oil. It's doesn't store very well and is much harder to transport internationally, requiring specialized LNG ships and loading/unloading facilities. And power plants have been converting from coal to natural gas for some time; it won't always be easy (or even possible) to convert these facilities back if needed.

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