posted on Feb, 2 2010 @ 03:00 PM
reply to post by mirageofdeceit
Just joined ATS and although this is late I will answer your question on Peak Oil. The term was developed by King Hubbert a geologist with a major oil
company that accurately predicted the peak rate of production for the United States oil fields in the early 1950's. Us oil production peaked around
1969. This was skewed by Prudoe Bay discovery in Alaska.
Mr. Hubberts prediction is basically a statistical analysis of a production oil basin. In a virgin basin that contains oil the first discoveries are
the biggest most prolific fields. They are found first simply because they are bigger. As development continues theses fields are devloped rapidly and
production rises rapidly. When drilling stops in these fileds then production begins to decline. Although drilling continues new discoveries are
smaller and less prolific and are unable to make up for the decline of the larger fields decline rate. At a certain point no matter how much money is
spent to drill new wells the basin will never again reach its maximum production rate.
This model inappropriately has been applied to the entire world which appears to predict the peak of production may have already occurred. This does
not mean that there is a dramatic drop in production only that we will not be able to produce oil at a suuficient rate to meet demand. There as not
been a giant field discovered 10 billion barrels plus since Prudoe Bay in 1968. Some count Cuisiano in Columbia, but the field delivers 500,000
bbls/day when the $2 billion pipeline is not being blown up by guerillas. Add in the fact that the infrastructure has been devasted through 20 years
of oil prices being in the toilet and that we don't have the people then the peak oil times may occur more rapidly since we don't have the ability
to rapidly develope the smaller fields to reduce the decline from the larger producing basins.
The other problem is that a large amount of probable production will not be developed timely since it is held by government monopolys that prohibit
Hubbert type development schedules.
On the bright side recent increases in price will aid in the ability to maintain production as more expensive rcovery techniques will extend
economical limits thereby increasing reserves and increasing production rate although not to peak levels.