2008 IEA World Energy Outlook Released

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Nichoman's picture
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Joined: Nov 1 2008
Posts: 422
2008 IEA World Energy Outlook Released

An important document was released today about the future of energy.  Its important because the world energy agency is beginning to realize we have a serious problem.  It doesn't go far enough but is a major first step...especially if depletion rates of 6.7% in 2007 and 8.6% by 2030 are close to accurate.


Oil Drum has a nice first take at...




Would be interested in Chris and others comments, I've been researching our oil situation heavily for over 5 years and data presented supports we are in serious times, approaching what colleagues at Oil Drum (and Chris to some extent outlines broadly in his "crash course") are concerned about...that is "Were In Trouble".




switters's picture
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Joined: Jul 19 2008
Posts: 744
Re: 2008 IEA World Energy Outlook Released
The Oil Drum is doing an series of analyses of the report, which should be enlightening.  As I'm sure you know, the IEA reports are famous for being industry-friendly and overly optimistic.  That makes this recent report of theirs all the more sobering.
Damnthematrix's picture
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Joined: Aug 10 2008
Posts: 3998
Re: 2008 IEA World Energy Outlook Released

Fresh sources of oil equivalent to the output of four Saudi Arabias will
have to be found simply to maintain present levels of supply by 2030,
one of the world's leading energy experts has said.

Fatih Birol, chief economist of the International Energy Agency (IEA),
the developed world's energy watchdog, told The Times that the depletion
of existing oilfields meant that vast new investments would be required
to satisfy the demand for oil.

Global oil production stands at about 85million barrels per day. Saudi
Arabia is the world's largest producer: it pumped an estimated
9.4million barrels per day during October.

Dr Birol's warning of a looming supply crunch emerged before the
publication today of the IEA's 2008 World Energy Outlook, which for the
first time includes details of a comprehensive study of depletion rates
in the world's largest oilfields.

Dr Birol, who has been leading the analysis for the Paris-based IEA,
which advises the Organisation of Economic Co-operation and Development
(OECD) on energy matters, said that the decline rates varied by field
and by region.

He said that in non-Opec countries, such as the United States, Britain
and Mexico, depletion rates averaged 10 to 11 per cent a year. The
average across the 13 member countries of the Opec cartel, which
produces 40 per cent of the world's oil, was lower, at about 2 to 3 per

Dr Birol, a 50-year-old Turk who worked for Opec in Vienna before
joining the IEA in 1995, said that decline rates were faster in the
smaller fields than in so-called "supergiants", such as Ghawar in Saudi

Ghawar is the world's largest oilfield and pumps about five million
barrels per day, or roughly 6 per cent of global supplies.

"In Russia and the North Sea we are seeing significant declines," Dr
Birol said, adding that the supergiants were still showing low rates of

Dr Birol said he believed that there was enough oil in the ground to
meet increased demand but that it would be "a huge challenge" because of
the scale of the investment required to develop new fields in remote and
inhospitable places, such as the Arctic or the deep ocean off Brazil.

He said that the challenge was particularly acute because, in addition
to the replacement 45million daily barrels needed simply to stand still,
an additional 20million would be needed to keep pace with surging
demand, mainly from developing countries. "It is possible, but it [will
require] a major structural change," Dr Birol said.

Almost all the growth in production will need to come from the national
oil companies of Opec states, as this was where the bulk of the
remaining reserves were to be found, he said.

In today's report, the IEA predicts that global oil production will
increase from 85million barrels per day to 106million by 2030.

However, the bulk of this increase would need to come from costly
unconventional fuels, such as liquefied natural gas, and the processing
of bitumen-rich oil sands from northern Canada into synthetic crude.

Dr Birol also emphasised that the twin challenges of meeting surging
global demand for energy while dealing with the threat of catastrophic
climate change would require "a global energy revolution" over the next
few years.
Damnthematrix's picture
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Aug 10 2008
Posts: 3998
Re: 2008 IEA World Energy Outlook Released
These are additional documents:
World Energy Outlook Fact Sheets
World Energy Outlook Executive Summary
I guess I should have known better than to think that
IEA would now abandon its super-optimistic presentation.
Instead it keeps saying that under BAU oil demand will
continue to grow at 1.6% per year for the next 22 years,
just like it did between 1983 and 2003,
but not like 1979-83 or 2003-8.
The Ultimately Recoverable Reserves estimated at 3.5 trillion barrels.
To do this someone will have to find 6 more Saudi Arabias
and spend $26 trillion on development
( $3.2 billion every day for 22 years )
What the knowledgeable reader is supposed to say is
"But that means BAU is impossible and we have a serious problem before 2015",
although it still allows for our leaders to pretend that BAU is still with us.
This is how 'they' intend to keep managing Peak Oil,
after all, the US Dollar is set to collapse well before oil peaks,
and after that it will be someone else's problem.

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