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06/24/2019

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Charles N.Steele

"Peak oil" is utterly idiotic. If technology were fixed (no more innovation), no new oil discoveries, and increasing demand for oil -- even then peak oil "theory" is wrong. Standard economics -- the Hotelling model -- predicts steadily rising prices and reduced consumption (conservation), no shock where we suddenly run out of oil.

Of course, technology improves (e.g. horizontal fracking) so that things that used not to be considered valuable resources (the Bakken, the Marcellus shale, etc.) suddenly become very valuable reserves...and available oil in the world *increases.*

As for the other quote, I think blaming the boomers is a mistake. I'm not a proponent of intergenerational conflict, but if anyone deserves blame it's those of the "Greatest Generation" who supported FDR's establishment of a welfare state based on the "beggar thy neighbor" principle...where usually the "neighbor" is the next generation of taxpayers.

Mark Spahn (West Seneca, NY)

How is "renewable energy" defined? It must be a form of energy that can be replaced. Petroleum and natural gas are renewable because we know how to replace them: grow vegetation and wait for about a billion years until it is transformed into a more exploitable form. (But see
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abiogenic_petroleum_origin
which basically says that planets are made of hydrocarbons.) The only truly non-renewable energy is solar power: once the Sun depletes its hydrogen fuel, we know of no way to renew it.

John Pepple

I'm assuming he's referring to solar and wind. I don't know what happened to water power.

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