The question before us is: What is the prospect for oil scarcity and energy prices? The most reliable method of forecasting the future cost and scarcity of energy is to extrapolate the historical trends of energy costs. The history of energy economics shows that in spite of troubling fears in each era of running out of whichever source of energy was important at that time, energy has grown progressively less scarce, as shown by long-run falling energy prices. The cause of the increasing plenty in the supply of energy has been the development of improved extraction processes and the discovery of new sources and new types of energy. –Julian Simon, The Ultimate Resource, 23 December 1993
Last week’s avalanche of releases from the U.S. Department of Energy showed daily oil production above 10 million barrels a day for the first time since 1970. The latest surge in U.S. oil output will probably hasten the country’s rise to the top of the producer pile. More important, it’s starting to look as though at least half of OPEC’s nightmare scenario for 2018 — a surge in shale output and a slowdown in demand growth — is coming true. –Julian Lee, Bloomberg, 11 February 2018
The oil cartel and key ally Russia have spent more than a year trying to drain the world of excess supply. But the International Energy Agency warned Tuesday, February 13, 2018, that a “colossal” oil boom in the United States could ruin their efforts. —CNN Money, 13 February 2018
The US is poised to become the world’s largest oil producer in 2019, the International Energy Agency said, with a stellar output from shale fields offsetting robust demand growth and supply cuts by other producers. —Financial Times, 13 February 2018
Gas will start flowing from Cuadrilla’s two shale exploration wells in Lancashire this year. Preliminary analysis of the site is “very encouraging”, bearing out the British Geological Survey’s analysis that the Bowland Shale beneath northern England holds one of the richest gas resources known: a huge store of energy at a cost well below that of renewables and nuclear. —The Times, 13 February 2018
Julian Simon (1932–98) would have been eighty-six-years old today. MasterResource is inspired by his contributions to energy (what he labeled “the master resource”), as well as his open-ended view of human ingenuity (what he called “the ultimate resource”). —Master Resource, 12 February 2018
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