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6 Apr 2010

DECC Start to ‘Get’ Peak Oil… Or Maybe Not…

lord-hunt-bodyAfter all the excitement over the last couple of weeks as to whether or not DECC are finally starting to ‘get’ peak oil, following the ‘summit’ that I attended and wrote a detailed account of, initial indicators are that perhaps, erm, no they aren’t.  The most recent ODAC (Oil Depletion Analysis Centre) newsletter (essential reading) quotes Lord Hunt (see left), the Energy Minister who dropped in for the last 30 minutes of the meeting, as telling the International Energy Forum in Cancun, “we need a shared understanding of what triggered the volatility of 2008 and 2009. We need the analysis to make sure we do not face the same energy price volatility again.”  Two excellent pieces of analysis that explore just those issues were in fact presented at the meeting, the UKERC report, and the Peak Oil Task Force report, but given that he just attended for the last 30 minutes, they passed him by.  Are we back at square one then?

Categories: Peak Oil

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John Marshall
6 Apr 5:44pm

Back to square minus one……….if the election goes the wrong way.

Arjuna Krishna-Das
6 Apr 5:46pm

Lord Hunt could evidently do with a course on how to use the Interweb. Such ignorance amongst our leaders is dismaying. How an energy minister can be so ignorant about peak oil leaves me speechless.

Tom A
6 Apr 9:54pm

The fact that anyone is surprised is what leaves me speechless.

phoebe bright
7 Apr 9:21am

It’s not just the politicians (as we know). I was told recently by a senior professor of economics, that there wasn’t a problem with oil supply. As the price rose, there would be more prospecting.

This left me speechless – especially given I had asked him about security of supply and continue low price! I havn’t heard that line for a long time.

There was a great talk on TED about how people tend to be either foxes (scavenge ideas from others and able to hold conflicting ideas in their head) and hedgehogs (have one big idea and try to make everything fit). It seems to me we tend to start life as a fox and become more hedgehoggy with age. Most of our politicians and scientists are well into hedgehog mode and just not able to reconnect with their foxy youth.

Darren Woodiwiss
7 Apr 1:50pm

The leader of out Leicestershire LSP environmental group ‘Enable’ also told me that there could be no such thing as ‘Peak Oil’ and that we will always find enough.

Ho hum, no arguing with the chair in these matters is there, obviously never taught the meaning of finite when he was at school.

Politically I fear that for them to accept ‘Peak Oil’ at this time of fiscal madness would mean that they might have to spend more money that we don’t have.

They have not fully absorbed the Transition way yet.

Stephen Watson
7 Apr 1:54pm

At my first ever PO meeting in Edinburgh the previous Labour energy minister came to talk and his basic approach seem to be to make other countries, particularly the USA, change their behaviour first. I just thought, oh dear …

An email signatures that I’ve used for about 3 years is still so relevant today and for the UK especially:

“We have only two modes – complacency and panic.” – James R. Schlesinger, the first US energy secretary, in 1977, on the country’s approach to energy