Is there some sort of news and commentary deluge this week? It’s enough to overwhelm a blogger, I tell you.
Anyway, since there are 50 new things to blog about, I’ll leave the subject of peak oil behind for a while, with a final round-up of links.
- Despite my critique of his positive proposals, Kevin Drum really did do a public service with his peak oil series. Read it.
- Also worth reading — though much of the material overlaps — is Drum’s review of Twilight in the Desert, by Matthew Simmons, wherein he makes the following points: a) most of the reasonably optimistic forecasts of our oil future rest on Saudi Arabia’s spare capacity; b) Saudi Arabia doesn’t actually have much spare capacity (the subject of Simmons’ book), and thus, c)
… it’s likely that we’re now in a permanent state of near zero spare capacity, which in turn will lead to an increasingly unstable world. As we enter an era in which even Saudi Arabia has no spare capacity to smooth out supply disruptions elsewhere in the world, any blip in supply, whether from political unrest, terrorism, or merely unforeseen natural events, will cause prices to carom wildly. A world with $100 per barrel oil is bad enough, but a world in which a single pipeline meltdown could cause prices to skyrocket to $300 per barrel for a few months and then back down is far worse.
- Speaking of Simmons, The Agonist has an excellent three–part interview with him. Simmons says: "The current model is not sustainable. It is not sustainable but it is insatiable."
- Speaking of Drum (ha ha), The Oil Drum has an excellent rundown of the many ways that cheap oil undergirds our food production system.
- There’s not much new in this E Magazine piece, but, well, there it is.
- And in the Macon, GA, Daily of all places, James Kunstler does that thing he does.