He who owns the oil will own the world, for he will own the sea by means of heavy oils, the air by means of the ultra-refined oils, and the land by means of the petrol and the illuminating oils. And in addition to these he will rule his fellow men in an economic sense, by reason of the fantastic wealth he will derive from oil - the wonderful substance which is more sought after and more precious than gold itself.
…the current consumption of energy contained in [fossil] fuels equates every person on earth having 90 slaves.
In the long run, the eventual use for oil will be for manufacturing useful organic chemicals. I expect our grandchildren to ask, “You burned it? All those lovely organic molecules, you just burned it?” Sorry, we burned it.
The First Half of the Oil Age was a remarkable chapter in history lasting about 150 years, when this new, cheap, and abundant source of energy permitted the rapid expansion of industry, trade, transport, and agriculture, allowing the world’s population to grow six-fold in parallel. In addition, it saw the massive growth of financial capital as banks lent more than they had on deposit, confident that tomorrow’s economic expansion was collateral for today’s debt. Seemingly, they did not recognise, or perhaps did not admit that they recognised, that it was the flow of cheap oil-based energy that made the expansion possible. Now, we face the Second Half of the Oil Age, when production, and all that depends on it, declines. Logic suggests that the expansion of the past must be matched by the contraction of the future, at least so far as the traditional economy is concerned.