Peak Oil is one of those significant and downright dangerous things that so few people in this country understand or, upon hearing of it, want to believe.
Much of the small talk around the proverbial water cooler at my workplace is about the high price of gasoline. People blame the high prices on greedy oil companies. They blame the high prices on George Bush. I can’t and won’t defend international corporations and the politicians who assist them in their destructive practices. But there is something much bigger going on here. Virtually no one understands that worldwide oil production is dropping while worldwide oil demand is rising. If I attempt to explain it, people change the subject. Denial is a normal human first response to the news of inevitable death.
Those rising gasoline prices are hard to ignore. The industrial era, fueled primarily by cheap crude oil is drawing to a close. That is my conclusion. But you should look at the information and decide for yourself. Really. You should.
If you have never heard of Peak Oil, or you have been resistant to the idea that something is seriously wrong, and not going to get better, I urge you to read this internet article: Ali Samsan Bakhtairi and Peak Oil
Mr. Bakhtairi, former director of the National Iranian Oil Co., knows oil. He believes we are in the first phase of a four-phase transitionary (and irreversible) world crude decline. The first phase, T-1 is where we are now. Bakhtairi says:
"Each transition [will] cover, on average, three-four years...[T]he only transition we can see rather clearly is T1. It is clear that T1 will witness the tilting of the 'oil demand' and 'oil supply' scales"
"After some 147 years of almost uninterrupted supply growth to a record output of some 81-82 million barrels/day [mb/d] in the summer of 2006, crude oil production has since entered its irreversible decline. This exceptional reversal alters the energy supply equation upon which life on our planet is based. It will come to place pressure upon the use of all other sources of energy -- be it natural gas, coal, nuclear power, and all types of sundry renewables, especially biofuels. It will eventually come to affect everything else under the sun."
Bakhtairi further states, of the 2nd stage of this transitionary time:
"My World Oil Production Capacity model has predicted that over the next 14 years, present global production of 82 million barrels per day will decrease by roughly 32%, down to around 55 million barrels per day by the year 2020."
My friends, if we are about to experience a 32% decline in worldwide oil production over the next decade, there is no question that life as we have known it in the industrial world is about to change in very dramatic ways.
Translation: we are, by default, about to begin transitioning back to some sort of agrarian civilization, back to a way of life that was the norm prior to when we became oil “addicted” and dependent.
The good news in all of this is that, at least in Bakhtairi’s analysis, there is still time for wise people to make voluntary adjustments in their lives in order to be better prepared for the inevitable changes.
Translation: Begin now to bring yourself and your family closer to the agrarian lifestyle. How so? Here are my suggestions…
1. Simplify. Downsize. Make do with less. Eliminate as much debt as possible.
2. If you are in a city, move to a rural area. Position yourself in a place where people have the land, the resources, and the inclination to help each other. Become part of a local church. Build relationships. Be a good neighbor. Weave yourself into the woof and warp of the community.
3. Learn and practice the traditional skills of self-sufficient agrarian people. Foremost among these skills is the ability to grow and preserve your own food. Learn by reading, asking others for help, and doing.
4. Begin to acquire the tools of self-sufficiency. Foremost among these tools are implements used to grow, gather, and preserve food.
Some will say this blog essay is a doom & gloom, head-for-the-hills alarmist reaction. Thoughts of the Y2k crisis that never happened come to mind. Peak oil isn’t being talked about in the mainstream news outlets (that I am aware of). If it was really that bad, it would be in the news more, wouldn't it?
Well, the internet is loaded with Peak Oil information from many sources that support what Mr. Bakhtaira says. All you need to do is search the words “Peak Oil” and educate yourself. And while you are at it, look for views from “experts” on the other side of this issue? I did a search of the words “peak oil myth.” I came up with information like found in the following sites:
Peak Oil is a Misleading Zionist Scam
The Peak Oil Myth
The Myth of Peak Oil
In short, the Peak Oil naysayers assert that there is no such problem as Peak Oil. They say the whole thing is a contrived scam, a conspiracy to destroy the American economy and make us subservient to diabolical powers. I won’t argue that. They might be right. I really don’t know.
Nevertheless, even among those who say Peak Oil is a scam, there appears to be the feeling that, scam or not, it’s coming down the pike. Watch the gas prices climb. They are like the handwriting on the wall. Think about it. Pray about it. These are exciting times we are living in....