First the Good News

In December world production of total liquids increased by 745,000 barrels per day from October according to the latest figures of the International Energy Agency (IEA). Resulting in total world liquids production of 87.20 million b/d, which is the all time maximum liquids production. For the third consecutive month world production has increased significantly. The IEA figures result in an average global production in 2007 of 85.26 million b/d, more than the average 2006 production of 85.00 million b/d and the average 2005 production of 84.10 million b/d. The EIA in their International Petroleum Monthly puts the average global 2007 production up to November at 84.53 million b/d, slightly lower than the average 2006 production of 84.60 million b/d and the average 2005 production of 84.63 million b/d.

Now the bad news

Conventional crude - Latest available figures from the Energy Information Administration (EIA) show that crude oil production including lease condensates decreased by 202,000 b/d from October to November. Total production in November was estimated at 73.17 million b/d, which is 518,000 b/d lower than the all time high crude oil production of 74.30 million b/d reached in May 2005.
This is the latest report from The Oil Drum, a website dedicated to the science of Peak Oil and the statistics of the oil industry. While the first graph shows that the total amount of liquid hydrocarbons has increased, the amount of crude oil produced continues to decline from the May 2005 peak. In short, this means that things like Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) has managed to increase production significantly while crude oil is getting harder to extract.

Remember, these graphs (especially the second one) are clear evidence of Peak Oil. If oil could be extracted faster, it would, and oil producers like OPEC would be taking full advantage of oil at $100 per barrel. But it's not happening. The price has increased as demand has continued to climb, while supply has remained static. Either the world's oil producers are deliberately not producing enough oil (for what reason I don't know, it would certainly not be profitable for them) or there is something preventing the oil from being extracted at the desired speed. The latter explanation fits the theory of Peak Oil. If this subject is new to you, please read the Wikipedia page on the subject... and be frightened.

1 comment:

Craig Bennett said...

I agree with your thoughts and research done here Neil.

Though I also think that behind the scenes there is technology being developed / has been developed that doesn't need so much petroleum products. While there is still a lot of profit to be made from oil, we wont see it quickly released.

When I was in hospital I watched a documentary on a French fellow who made a van that ran on compressed air and could go 200 km on the tank. He then made a another one with a small motor in which could run on air and petrol... which was very fuel efficient.

In this second van he designed it that every time the brakes were applied it compressed a small amount of air into the tank and when the motor was running it also ran a small compressor...