Another brief “interruption” to the flow of planned posts:

Touching on a theme I raised previously (with similar observations from Ferdinand E. Banks as cited in that post), I recently came across two other articles (one by the always-informative Kurt Cobb) discussing concerns about increased domestic demand from oil-exporting nations. (See the references to those articles at the end of this post.)

Texas petroleum geologist Jeffrey Brown, noted for his Export Land Model theory, is featured in both articles, and he raises salient points that bear directly on the supply of readily available and relatively inexpensive oil we’ll likely have in the years to come. That supply is eventually going to be curtailed, as I’ve been discussing since this blog began. What that means to all of us is the primary purpose of Peak Oil Matters.

The two referenced items remind us that: (a) the consequences of Peak Oil aren’t solely the result of decreased production, (b) technology isn’t the magic answer.

As oil-exporting nations use the profits generated from their production and sale to grow their own economies and strengthen their industries and infrastructure—while raising the standards of living of their own citizens—they must necessarily increase the amount of oil they retain for themselves. It is, after all, their oil. (And they function with fossil fuel-based infrastructures just as the rest of us do.) Seems fairly straightforward….

What we tend to overlook, and what these two articles make clear, is that as oil production begins its inexorable decline (as it already has in many instances), and as this domestic use increases, the amount of oil available to the rest of us decreases even more drastically than it does based on a straight oil production decline. If the Export Land Model theory is correct, then we may be facing the challenges of Peak Oil even sooner than we anticipate. Existing technology isn’t going to overcome this accelerated decline.

And if that is true, then we’d better get moving on planning and implementing some new strategies quickly.

Referenced articles: ; Do Texas and the North Sea foretell the future of oil production? 
02/25/2010 by Scitizen (Kurt Cobb); Another Take On Peak Oil: Exports, Not Production, Indicate Crisis by Zoe Macintosh on February 25, 2010