Years ago we all felt quite comfortable about the availability of oil in North America – or least most of us did. We had the biggest and flashiest cars in the entire world, and the largest houses too. That was before the first oil crisis in the ’70’s.
Today, the twin threats of global warming and dwindling untapped oil reserves have us thinking about alternative energy programs. But industry analysts tell us that it will take radical mind-shifts and decades to implement these at the current rate of progress.JD Power & Associates for example recently stated that according to their projections, only 8% of the car market would be electric within 10 years.
A major problem lies in what will happen with global economic growth in the meantime. The economy of China is now the world’s second biggest and the country has already become the world’s number one consumer of oil.
This is especially scary in the light of predictions that they may be using ten times more oil in twenty years time, if they continue to build thirteen million cars a year.
Oil is not the only resource under threat either. China is commissioning two coal-fired power stations every week and already contributes fifty percent of the planet’s ongoing pollution. India appears to be only ten years behind China on the economic growth trail, meaning that there will soon effectively be two emerging global giants competing for same resources.
We need ten years from finding an oil source to refining it. As growth in the emerging markets shows no sign of slowing, industry experts are predicting an oil shortage within a 3 year time frame. Oil is truly going to be scarcer (and far more expensive) a whole lot sooner than we thought.
E. & O.E.