I have started to read the term "peak oil" a lot recently and have become aware that it is a significant event. In short, it is the point where oil production reaches its very peak before falling in to decline.
Is this significant ?
Well yes, it is. A 5% decline in oil production led to a 40% increase in prices in the 1970's, and with new demand for oil and a steady decrease in production, we are looking at an 8% reduction in oil availability each year. What does this mean ? In short, massive increases, energy scarcity and a real problem in producing goods, even those energy efficient items that might help us in the future to fight climate change and fossil fuel shortages.
In scimple terms, we are dependent on oil to produce and transport virtually everything we use. We even use oil to produce solar panels, wind turbines and transport nuclear fuel around the world. So in effect, we are all buggered.
If you want to read something about peak oil and are prepared to be highly depressed, then click HERE and read the "life after the oil crash" site, or for a slightly lighter read check out the Telegraph story that links to this.