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Have we reached peak oil and can we survive it?

4285 Views 41 Replies 23 Participants Last post by  LeafStew
Some experts in the oil industry believe world oil production peaked in 2005 or 2007, even the most optimistic predictions go to only 2020. I have really been thinking about peak oil and sustainability lately, and I think the US is in for some VERY hard times in 5 to 10 years. I see NO efforts for oil conservation and it might be too little too late by the time people even begin to use alternatives in any significant way.

My hope for the future comes from nanosolar and nuclear energy but we still need an oil based economy to make that transition, it would take at least a minimal of 20 to 40 years to make a transition on that scale and we only have 5 to 10 years from peak oil AT MOST. Our whole economy is based on unending growth and that is unrealistic with the finite resources we have, this includes water, coal, and other non-renewables too. At worst, our entire civilization could collapse and this has happen before to the Romans and the Mayans.

We might have to go to a more localized lifestyle in the future and that's if we make a peaceful transition. I have been trying to factor peak oil into my career choice and future expectations. Maybe emerging technologies can get us out of this mess like nanotechnology, solar, nuclear, bio, geothermal, wind, and natural gas.

What do you think will be the implications of diminishing energy resources on gobalization, US economy, and your personal future?
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Short answer is: Doesn't matter and yes we can survive it.

The United States oil reserves are near full capacity. Once the oil companies learn how to charge people for alternative fuels, I'm sure we will be seeing those types of "breakthroughs" in technology we all desperately need and want.
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A majority of things that oil is used for are not fuel. Fuel is actually one of the most easily replaceable usages. Plastics and petroleum based chemicals on the other hand aren't as easy.
Don't forget about chocolate!
Haha, yeah. And interestingly, people say that non-fuel products are only 5%, which may be true by volume. It might be true that only 5% (or probably 7%) of a barrel goes to non-fuel products, but the way oil cracking works means you need the whole barrel to make that 5% anyway. It's not 5% going to non-fuel products and the rest going to fuel products, the refining of the whole barrel can make all of the products because the cracking is progressive - the stuff that is left behind after gasoline is the stuff that other things are made out of.

So even if we cut out fuel we still need a crapload of oil even to get that 5%.
Quite so! However, my position is unchanged. New manufacturing procedures will be made available once oil companies figure out how to effectively monopolize them. I am almost positive that there are better ways to make wax, plastic, pens, lipstick, shampoo, diapers, DVDs, etc. without the use of crude oil. I am also nearly positive, that in the age of single atom manipulation and nanobots, we have already discovered these revolutionizing new methods. I also believe that the oil companies love profit more than anything else, and as such, have kept these new methods down. If by some chance we do not have these new methods, the US easily has enough oil to last us until we can discover them.
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