22 October 2007 15:19 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (ICIS news)--World oil production peaked in 2006 and will start to decline at a rate of several percent a year, energy scientists warned on Monday, adding further fuel to the "peak oil" debate.
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The group’s latest research looks at and makes projections from oil production data, as opposed to the potential of oil reserves. It suggests that declining fossil fuel supplies will trigger structural change in the global economic system.
“By 2020, and even more by 2030, global oil supply will be dramatically lower,” it said.
The Energy Watch Group admits that its analysis flies in the face of projections of oil reserves and supply made by the Paris-based International Energy Agency (IEA).
“The message by the IEA, namely that business as usual will also be possible in future, sends a false signal to politicians, industry and consumers - not to forget the media,” Energy Watch says.
"The most alarming finding is the steep decline of the oil supply after peak," Jorg Schindler from the group warns.
The Energy Watch study estimates global oil reserves at 854 giga barrels (gbbl) compared with the oil industry estimate of 1.244 gbbl.
"My experience of debating the peak oil issue with the oil industry, and trying to alert Whitehall to it, is that there is a culture of institutionalised denial in government and the energy industry," Energy Watch attributes Jeremy Leggett, Solarcentury CEO and former member of the UK government’s Renewables Advisory Board, as saying.
“As the evidence of an early peak in production unfolds, this becomes increasingly impossible to understand," according to Leggett.
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