Energy: Shell’s future scenarios – Staring into energy’s black hole

Shell’s “energy scenarios” see fossil fuels remaining a huge part of the energy mix to 2050. But are they realistic? And if Shell is right, what does it mean for the planet’s future?

Shell’s “energy scenarios” see fossil fuels remaining a huge part of the energy mix to 2050. But are they realistic? And if Shell is right, what does it mean for the planet’s future?

In the blazing June sunshine of Nogaro racetrack, deep in the south of France, a corporate futurist sharing the same name as the world’s most famous utilitarian philosopher, Jeremy Bentham, was predicting the future of global energy. Meanwhile, outside thousands of students attempted to make home-made carts with tiny engines travel further than 3400 kilometres on just one litre of petrol.

While the students practised for their race, whizzing up and down outside the conference windows, inside Shell chief executive Jeroen van der Veer was making some rather bleak predictions about the future of the planet. “Energy demand will double between now and 2050,” he told his 200-strong audience of Shell executives, think-tankers, academics and journalists. Between now...

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Peak Oil

According to investment banker Matthew Simmons, we could be at $600 per barrel oil soon.

Peak Oil is a very big problem. Global oil production is now declining, from 85 million barrels per day to 60 million barrels per day by 2015. At the same time demand will increase 14%. This is like a 45% drop in 7 years. No one can reverse this trend, nor can we conserve our way out of this catastrophe. Because the demand for oil is so high, it will always be higher than production; thus the depletion rate will continue until all recoverable oil is extracted.

We are facing the collapse of the highways that depend on diesel trucks for maintenance of bridges, cleaning culverts to avoid road washouts, snow plowing, roadbed and surface repair. When the highways fail, so will the power grid, as highways carry the parts, transformers, steel for pylons, and high tension cables, all from far away. With the highways out, there will be no food coming in from "outside," and without the power grid virtually nothing works, including home heating, pumping of gasoline and diesel, airports, communications, and automated systems.

This is documented in a free 48 page report that can be downloaded, website posted, distributed, and emailed: http://www.peakoilassociates.com/POAnalysis.html

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