Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Peak oil fringe group gains Congressional attention

cnn money

A House energy subcommittee met Wednesday morning to learn more about the so-called peak oil movement, which says that by 2008 humans will have extracted half of the earth's oil. In other words, we're using oil faster than we can ever hope to find it.

"We have all been enjoying the greatest party the world has ever seen: the great oil party," according to Kjell Aleklett, president of the Association for the Study of Peak Oil (ASPO) and a physics professor at Uppsala University in Sweden.

Aleklett, who testified at the hearing, said in a paper last year, "After the climax comes the decline, when we have to sober up and face the fact that the party is coming to an end."

The hangover would mean not only the end of low oil prices, but also a slowdown in world economic growth. It could also lead to social and political unrest, as many countries try to keep the party going even as oil disappears.

Noted witnesses at the Subcommittee on Energy and Air Quality also include Robert Hirsch, senior energy program advisor at Science Applications International Corporation, and Robert Esser, a director and senior consultant at Cambridge Energy Research Associates;
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