Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


NZ relies on flawed global oil production data

30 August 2004, Wellington

NZ Government relies on flawed global oil production data.

Send a letter or email to Pete Hodgson, Minster of Energy, asking him what he is doing about the Peak Oil problem and you’ll get this response.

New Zealand is a member of the International Energy Agency (IEA) and that Agency, in its 'World Energy Outlook', foresees enough oil to comfortably meet demand to 2030. (reply from Pete Hodgson, 27 Aug, 2004).

People once believed the world was flat and scientific assertions to the contrary were considered blasphemy. A similar situation afflicts our politicians when it comes to the reliable reporting of energy data.

The IEA was set up by the OECD after the oil shocks of the 70’s. As concerns about global Peak Oil began surfacing in the mid to late 90’s the IEA succeed in delivering a “business as usual” message but with seriously flawed “hidden variables”.

Once such hidden variable, a completely invented parameter included in the IEA future oil production models is “as yet unidentified non-conventional oil”. This figure miraculously rises from 0 in 2010 to 19 million barrels per day in 2020. This so called “unidentified non-conventional oil” is nothing more than a euphemism for shortfall in supply. By plugging in the 19 million barrels per day the IEA can assume a “comfortable” meeting of demand until 2020.

But there are more problems for the IEA oil models.

The IEA’s data source is the US Geological Survey (USGS) and US Department of Energy. Colin Campbell in his 2002 publication, Peak Oil: An Outlook on Crude Oil Depletion summarises the flawed USGS approach as follows:

It has assessed the Undiscovered Potential of each basin with a range of subjective probabilities. It has a Low Case for the most sure and a High Case for the least sure. The High Case itself has little meaning, being little more than a wild guess. The Low Case is consistent with the discovery trend, but The Mean value, which is the one publicised is meaningless because it is influenced by the High Case. This has been confirmed by experience in the real world because the Mean estimate is already 100 Gb short, five years into the study period. Its notion of "reserve growth" is also flawed. It is depicted as a technological dynamic when it is simply an artefact of reporting practice, not to be extrapolated into the future.

Oil discovery peaked in the 1960s. We now find only one barrel of oil for every four consumed. Total oil production outside the Middle East peaked in 1997, this was accurately predicted and has been consequently verified, total oil production outside the Middle East is now in terminal decline. The Middle East must increase its production in order to meet increasing global demand, however increasingly worrying data is emerging from the Middle East in regard to it’s ability to pump more oil. It seems the Middle East is exhibiting the first stages of decline.

The warning signals have evident for a long time. The Government, the media and many other politicians are turning a blind eye to this problem. What’s worse is the Government is listening to bad advice. Given the importance of oil to our lives our lack of preparedness is astounding.

Colin Campbell and others predict a global production peak in oil between 2006 and 2007. Once “peak oil” hits we’ll quickly see shortages manifest initially as long angry queues at the petrol pump. Schools will close as students and teachers are unable to get there, hospitals will move into crisis mode as staff, doctors and nurses are unable to reach them, supermarkets will ration bread and milk, trade and industry will be seriously affected, confidence in the Government of the day will vanish overnight. An interruption in supply of oil to New Zealand lasting only a few days is likely to cause widespread havoc and confusion.

Once this happens perhaps the Government and politicians might finally take the issue seriously. By then it will be too late.

Powerless NZ 30 August 2004

PowerLess NZ is a growing group of scientists, energy analysts and concerned citizens whose principle objectives are to alert both Government and the general public to New Zealand’s looming energy crisis. Our aim is to support development of renewable energy resources at both a private and public level, as well as encourage a firm move away from dependence upon fossil fuels. More information about global peak oil and resource depletion can be found at http://www.oilcrash.com/

ENDS


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Digital Evolution: Scoop Independent News Launches "Operation Chrysalis"

From today Scoop is beginning a process of public consultation with the political, business and civil society groups it has served for the past 15 and a half years.

"It is hoped that in time - with new leadership and increased community engagement - the chrysalis will incubate a new kind of Scoop, one which can sustainably continue Scoop's Mission 'to be an agent of positive change'", says Scoop Founder, Editor and Publisher Alastair Thompson.

"As big publishing shrivels, public participation in contributing and spreading news has grown. Scoop has evolved with this wave by providing an independent platform, committed to upholding democracy, providing a voice to all, and providing the public easy access to information about decisions which affect them." More>>

 

Parliament Adjourns:

Greens: CAA Airport Door Report Conflicts With Brownlee’s Claims

The heavily redacted report into the incident shows conflicting versions of events as told by Gerry Brownlee and the Christchurch airport security staff. The report disputes Brownlee’s claim that he was allowed through, and states that he instead pushed his way through. More>>

ALSO:

TAIC: Final Report On Grounding Of MV Rena

Factors that directly contributed to the grounding included the crew:
- not following standard good practice for planning and executing the voyage
- not following standard good practice for navigation watchkeeping
- not following standard good practice when taking over control of the ship. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell:
On The Pakistan Schoolchildren Killings

The slaughter of the children in Pakistan is incomprehensibly awful. On the side, it has thrown a spotlight onto something that’s become a pop cultural meme. Fans of the Homeland TV series will be well aware of the collusion between sections of the Pakistan military/security establishment on one hand and sections of the Taliban of the other… More>>

ALSO:

Werewolf Satire:
The Politician’s Song

am a perfect picture of the modern politic-i-an:
I don’t precisely have a plan so much as an ambition;
‘Say what will sound most pleasant to the public’ is my main dictum:
And when in doubt attack someone who already is a victim More>>

ALSO:

Flight: Review Into Phillip Smith’s Escape Submitted To Government

The review follows an earlier operational review by the Department of Corrections and interim measures put in place by the Department shortly after prisoner Smith’s escape, and will inform the Government Inquiry currently underway. More>>

ALSO:

Intelligence: Inspector-General Accepts Apology For Leak Of Report

The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security, Cheryl Gwyn, has accepted an unreserved apology from Hon Phil Goff MP for disclosing some of the contents of her recent Report into the Release of Information by the NZSIS in July and August 2011 to media prior to its publication. The Inspector-General will not take the matter any further. More>>

ALSO:

Drink: Alcohol Advertising Report Released

The report of the Ministerial Forum on Alcohol Advertising and Sponsorship has been released today, with Ministers noting that further work will be required on the feasibility and impact of the proposals. More>>

ALSO:

Other Report:

Leaked Cabinet Papers: Treasury Calls For Health Cuts

Leaked Cabinet papers that show that Government has been advised to cut the health budget by around $200 million is ringing alarm bells throughout the nursing and midwifery community. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news