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What If There Isn't Enough Energy Going Forward?

We'll be forced to live with less. Maybe a LOT less.
Friday, August 24, 2018, 7:09 PM

Currently the media is breathlessly cheering the record amounts of US oil production.

Technology advances in the fracking process have enabled the "shale miracle", resulting in the US producing over 10 million barrels per day for the first time since the 1970s. Think of all the incremental GDP growth that excess oil will power! » Read more

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Dr. Charles Hall: The Laws Of Nature Trump Economics

It's all about Energy Return On Energy Invested (EROEI)
Monday, March 5, 2018, 1:59 PM

Dr. Charles Hall may not be a name you instantly recognize, but it should be.

Now a Professor Emeritus of the College of Environmental Science and Forestry, Dr. Hall is a rigorous researcher of energy, oil, biophysical economics -- and was a critical early pioneer in developing the key resource metric of Energy Returned On Energy Invested (EROEI).

After a life's career of looking at the world through the lens of EROEI, Hall is very concerned that, as a global society, we are hurtling towards an energy crisis that will forcefully (and likely painfully) downshift our standard of living within the lifetime of the current generation. » Read more

Podcast

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Gail Tverberg: The Coming Energy Depression

The math is straightforward, but cruel
Sunday, January 7, 2018, 4:52 PM

Energy analyst and professional actuary Gail Tverberg returns to the podcast this week to revisit the global energy outlook. And fair warning, Gail warns it's quite grim.

To her, it's a simple math problem. We have too many people placing too much demand on the world's depleting energy resources. The cost of energy is rising, which we are compensating for in the short term by using financial gimmicks to make "affordable" -- when all we're really doing is creating future promises that cannot possibly be repaid.

The increasing cost of energy is manifesting in higher prices (for everything, not just fuels) and lower real wages, a divergence she sees only worsening from here. This path leads to another Great Depression-style crisis from which she does not see a clear path out of. » Read more

Insider

Off The Cuff: Quantifiying The Impact Of Hurricane Harvey

Likely the most costly US storm -- ever
Thursday, August 31, 2017, 7:32 PM

In this week's Off The Cuff podcast, Chris and Charles Hugh Smith discuss:

  • The Danger Has Not Yet Passed
    • Levee spillovers and other risks are still in play
  • The Impact On The Oil/Gasoline Market
    • Will be much larger than folks were originally expecting
  • The Costs To Rebuild Will Be Massive
    • Harvey will likely be the US' most expensive storm to-date
  • How To Prepare For Similar Disasters In The Future
    • Take action early. Don't lose urgency once the sun comes out

In the midst of his hour-by-hour analysis of the situation in the Gulf in the aftermath of Harvey, Chris takes time to talk with Charles Hugh Smith about the repercussions of this mega-storm, both short and long-term.

Click to listen to a sample of this Off the Cuff Podcast or Enroll today to access the full audio and other premium content today.
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Why The Shale Oil "Miracle" Is Becoming A "Debacle"

Dispelling the magical thinking behind the hype
Friday, August 25, 2017, 9:21 PM

The central point of this report is that the US is deluding itself when it comes to energy abundance (generally) and oil (specifically).

The bottom line is this: The US shale industry resembles a fraudulent Ponzi scheme much more so than it does any kind of "miracle". » Read more

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Art Berman: Don't Get Used To Today's Low Oil Prices

They're a temporary anomaly. Higher prices are ahead.
Sunday, May 7, 2017, 3:00 PM

Oil expert and geological consultant Art Berman returns to the podcast this week to address head-on the question: Was the Peak Oil theory wrong? With the world "awash" in sub-$50 per barrel oil, were all the warnings about persistently higher future oil prices just a bunch of alarmist hand-wringing?

In a word: No.

Art explains how the current glut of oil created by the US shale boom -- along with high crude output by both OPEC and non-OPEC  producers -- is a temporary anomaly. Fundamentally, we are not finding nearly as much oil as we need to continue our demand curve; and at the same time, we are extracting our reserves at a faster rate than ever. That's a mathematical recipe for a coming supply crunch. It's not a matter of if, but when. » Read more

Insider

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Get Ready For Sky-High Taxes

As the pie shrinks, the taxman will grab for more
Tuesday, May 12, 2015, 10:39 AM

At some point in the arriving future, there’s plenty of economic pain coming either to the taxpayers when the I.O.U.s come due, or to the hopeful retirees to whom much has been promised. » Read more

Insider

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Europe's Next Energy Crisis Is Now Assured

China takes more & more of the gas that once went to Europe
Tuesday, November 11, 2014, 12:25 AM

Today, Russia inked a second blockbuster deal with China that will starve Europe for natural gas in just a few short years. It's now increasingly clear that 2018 will mark the beginning of the end for any hopes Europe had of returning to robust economic growth.

It was by far the biggest news of the day. While it did make headlines, you might have missed it because not much was made of the affair beyond the announcement.  The story came and went as if Russia has oodles of natural gas (NG) to send to China.

It doesn't. And the supplies it has now contracted to send to China will be pulled from supplies that currently go to Europe. » Read more

Insider

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Off the Cuff: Warming Up The Helicopters

Yes, they're now talking about giving cash to citizens
Tuesday, September 2, 2014, 9:58 AM

In this week's Off the Cuff podcast, Chris and Mish discuss:

  • Winter Is Coming
    • Russia's trump card
  • Europe Back In Recession
    • The EU's structural weaknesses are re-emerging
  • Bond Market Madness
    • Risk is terribly underpriced right now
  • Helicopter Drop Trial Balloon
    • Yes, they're now talking about giving cash to citizens
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Ukraine: A Perspective from Europe

The West's power & influence is on the wane
Wednesday, August 20, 2014, 11:54 AM

It is still a mystery to many historians as to how and why this World War I led to the slaughter of nine million people. But analysis of different parties to the original event, pursuing their own vested interests without a grasp of the bigger picture, certainly rings true of the Ukrainian situation today with regards to the West, embodied in a disparate committee called NATO. The similarity with the chaotic diplomacy that led to WW1 stops there: Russia under Vladimir Putin’s leadership appears to have a good grasp of its objective. » Read more