August 18, 2005

The Sweet Smell of Nostalgia

This next item reminds me of my high school chemistry class student teacher back in 1975 who assured us with the certainty of that little girl on The Kids in the Hall who always said, "It's a fact!", that we were going to run out of oil within 20 years:

The world could run out of time to develop cleaner alternatives to oil and other fossil fuels before depletion drives prices through the roof, a leading Dutch energy researcher said on Thursday.

Ton Hoff, manager of the Energy Research Center of the Netherlands, said it could take decades to make alternatives affordable to the point where they can be used widely, although high oil prices were already stimulating such research.

"If we run out of fossil fuels -- by the time the oil price hits 100 dollars or plus, people will be screaming for alternatives, but whether they will be available at that moment of time -- that's my biggest worry," Hoff said.

Just for fun, note the substantial confusion here. Mr. Hoff starts with a pretty big assumption that viable alternative energy sources are out there waiting to be developed in the next couple of decades, if only we will purify our hearts and pursue them. I read elsewhere in this article that oil prices remain "stubbornly high." Please. Oil prices have been "high" for a couple of months now, but why should that stop anyone from embarking on world-changing, multi-decade, taxpayer gouging plan based upon only a couple month's data? Trust me Tom, when we start to run out of oil, the price will be much, much higher than $100 a barrel. Of course, I assume he's talking about a barrel here rather than a gallon, but who knows? Then again, when you are convinced the sky is falling, why worry about such fine distinctions?

Posted by Charles Austin at August 18, 2005 03:23 PM