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

Gordon Campbell: On The Tokenism Of New Zealand's Role Against Islamic State

To date, the Opposition has continued to occupy itself with the marginalia of the issue. E.g. whether Key did or didn’t know whether Barack Obama would be present at the US briefing last week on IS, or whether New Zealand’s military involvement is or isn’t already a fait accompli.

It might be better to tackle the issue, head on. Our contribution against IS will be to send SAS forces to train the Iraqis? That’s like offering trainers to General Custer just as the 7th cavalry reached the Little Big Horn.
More>>

 

Parliament Today:

Scoop Business: Shell And Todd Caught Drilling Without Approval

Multi-national oil company Shell’s New Zealand arm and local energy giant Todd Energy have breached the new law governing New Zealand’s Exclusive Economic Zone, the Environmental Protection Authority says in an Oct. 10 document released by the Green Party. More>>

ALSO:

Labour: Tea Breaks 'Gone By Lunch Time'

“How cynical that on the eve of Labour weekend, the National government is pushing through legislation that takes away the statutory right to tea and meal breaks along with collective bargaining protections, and makes vulnerable workers jobs even less secure." More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Pharmac, Gough Whitlam And Sleater-Kinney

We’re not at the outset of these negotiations. The outset was six years ago, and negotiators were hoping to have some sort of ‘framework’ deal finished in time for the APEC meeting in a few weeks’ time. These ‘extreme’ positions are what we’ve reached near the intended end of the negotiations… More>>

ALSO:

PM Of Many Hats: Questions, No Answers On Whale Oil

Dr RUSSEL NORMAN (Co-Leader – Green) to the Prime Minister: How many times since November 2008 has he spoken with blogger Cameron Slater on the phone and how many times, if any, has he texted him?
Rt Hon JOHN KEY (Prime Minister): None in my capacity as Prime Minister. More>>

ALSO:

Aussie Investigation Dropped: Call On Minister McCully To Pursue The Case Of Balibo Five

West Papua Action is deeply concerned at the lack of any clear outcome from the Australian Federal Police inquiry into the 1975 deaths of the ‘Balibo Five’ including NZ journalist Gary Cunningham. More>>

ALSO:

'Feed The Kids' Bill: Metiria Turei To Lead Fight On Feeding Hungry Children

Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei is urging all political parties to support the Feed the Kids Bill which she inherited today from Mana leader Hone Harawira. More>>

ALSO:

Parliament Today: State Opening Of Parliament

The House sat at 10.30am on Tuesday before MPs were summoned to hear the Speech from the Throne in the Legislative Council Chamber. More>>

ALSO:

Tertiary Education: Students Doing It Tough As Fees Rise Again

The Government is making it increasingly difficult for Kiwis to gain tertiary education as fees continue to rise and access to student support becomes even more restricted, Labour’s Tertiary Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. More>>

ALSO:

Housing, Iraq: PM Press Conference – 20 October 2014

Prime Minister John Key met with press today to discuss:
• Housing prices and redevelopment in Auckland
• Discussions with Tony Abbott on the governmental response to ISIS, and New Zealand’s election to the UN Security Council More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news