To the Editor:
The good news is that by 2050 AD global warming will just be a memory because we will have burned up virtually all of the oil. The bad news is that we will have burned up virtually all of the oil. Total world oil production probably peaked about five years ago; now we are on the downside of pumping out the remaining world's oil reserves. This is based on a simple bell-shaped oil production curve: production starts out low, climbs, peaks, declines and ends. It is true for both an individual oil field and total world oil reserves.
Check out some of the future attractions coming our way at some useful web sites such as the Oil Depletion Analysis Centre in the UK at //odac-info.org/. Also check out: www.oilcrash.com, www.oilcrisis.com, www.peakoil.org and www.lifeaftertheoilcrash.net.
Life in 2050 A.D. will not be pretty if you are used to the oil-based petroleum-dependent consumer economy of the last one hundred years or so. Try no gasoline (or try gasoline priced at twenty-seven dollars per gallon ($27.00/gal), basically the same thing). Try life without cars, SUVs, delivery trucks, commercial fertilizers (from natural gas, which will also be nearly all gone by 2050 AD), pesticides, pharmaceutical drugs, computer chips, personal computers and plastics for starters. All of these products are grossly dependent upon petroleum-based energy.
To possibly avoid the worst and most terrible aspects of this looming disaster, humans will need to all work together as they never have worked together before. We need to immediately cut our reproduction rate by at least 90%. We need to greatly intensify our basic and applied scientific research to convert solar radiation (sunshine) into electricity in an economical manner. We need to research how to switch our petroleum-dependent industrial and consumer infrastructure to some alternative energy sources. Right now, we can begin to phase out our wasteful use of plastic food containers and to replace them with traditional paper bags, tin cans, glass bottles, cloth bags and waxed-paper containers.
This rapidly looming end-of-oil crisis will be studiously ignored by Republicans, Democrats and the corporate media until this unprecedented disaster hits big time and when it is much too late to do much to protect ourselves.
James K. Sayre
30 June 2005
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