Oil prices have risen drastically, leading to a potential collapse in our economy. But an oil industry spokesman says the oil shortage is a myth. If so, it's working well for two very divergent groups: the oil companies, who are making record profits, and environmentalists, who want to hasten development of alternate fuels.
In the June 9th edition of the Independent, Steve Connor reports that UK oil industry CEO Richard Pike is saying that there is more than twice as much oil in the ground as major producers say?in fact, there are 1,200 billion barrels of oil available worldwide in proven reserves. Pike claims that big oil companies?which are making record profits?are happy to go along with this misconception, since it means they can keep their prices high.
Environmentalists are also happy to perpetuate this myth. Connor quotes Pike as saying, "The bad news is that by underestimating proven oil reserves we have been lulled into a false sense of security in terms of environmental issues, because it suggests we will have to find alternatives to fossil fuels in a few decades." But if we don't?if the world wakes up and realizes that we have enough oil to last us into the next century?then it may drop its search for alternative fuels, leading to an increase in greenhouse gases and global warming.
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