Peak Oil is the point at which global oil production maxes out and begins declining. It's not about running out of oil. But what is important is the rate of production and the volume of oil available for export. This is especially crucial for New Zealand as an oil importing nation. As production tails off and declines, we face higher oil prices, petroleum scarcity, & serious impacts on our way of life & New Zealand's economy. The Next Oil Shock is an excellent, concise report on peak oil from a New Zealand perspective. It was written by Clint Smith a researcher in the NZ Parliament Research unit. I recommend you start by reading this report.
How soon? Certainly this decade, and almost certainly within 5 years, maybe sooner. The British Government's UK Energy Research Centre says there is significant risk of this happening before 2020. In respect of conventional crude oil the International Energy Agency say this happenned back in 2006. Many business, government, military and oil industry experts estimate world oil production will start to decline in just 1 - 5 years.
There is a very good introduction to global oil depletion and peak oil at the Oil Depletion Analysis Centre (ODAC) - a UK think tank.
The ODAC website also has links to some very informative and persuasive reports and videos.
Another excellent introduction to Peak Oil from a New Zealand perspective just happens to have been written by my son Simon.
I have assembled a page on this site with links to a host of reports and other resources from credible sources.
There are great articles on all aspects of energy depletion and community responses such as localisation on the Energy Bulletin website, and at the other links and blogs I have listed ... see the right hand column.
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