Saturday, July 16, 2005


I do not know what is the position of the reader of this blog with respect to the war in Irak. Was it waged because Saddam really had weapons of mass destruction? Most people i know assume (as i do) that the war was waged because of oil. In the beginning one might be a little bit shocked, but then one just gets used to it. "Such is the world" we say.

The end result of this war is that there are new stable reserves of oil in the world. It doesn't matter if there are bombings and resistance in Irak, as long as the costs to run this operation is lower than the profit had from extracting and selling the oil. Most probably my readers are rather bored at this points, they have been repeated endlessly elsewhere. What is maybe more interesting comes from an article i read about "Peak oil theory" and its relation to the war. This theory asserts that since oil is not a renewable resource, it will eventually be exhausted and we can predict when it will happen. There will be a time when drilling new wells will be more expensive than purchasing existing ones. The new wells are going to be to small to be economically profitable, all big, productive, efficient wells have already been found. Once we reach this stage prices are bound to rise, given the diminishing supply and the increasing demand. This is not an apocalyptic scenario, be assured. The increasing prices of oil will make that other sources of energy will become reasonably profitable and, thus, exploited.

However, a controlled transition is highly desirable and also the ones who have the wells will make juicy profits in this last stage. Thus, the article makes the case that these reasons are behind the war in Irak.

Related to this, there is the question of the renewable nature of oil. There is a russian theory claiming that oil is produced by bacteria. According to its proponents, the oil fields are replenished regularly. This sounds crazy on a first reading, but i found some web pages of apparently clever people saying that this theory might be credible. I do not have the link right now but i remember reading it from an energy professor of a university in Rotterdam. If there is someone knowledgeable on the subject i would love some comments on this theory.

Anyway, all this is very far from my domain of expertise, but it was on my blogging list :). Later in this week you will find more down to earth subjects, although not less important. Cheers!


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