Friday 2 November 2012

All Hands To the Pump

In the turmoil of one kind or another in the coming week, the election and fall out from Hurricane Sandy in the USA, the current sensations in the UK and the game of Euro musical chairs in Europe we are continuing to forget what real challenges we could be in for in the coming decade.

The Oil Drum site is a regular reminder of some of the essential issues we face and the complexity of the problems and the difficulty of any debate related to them.  This one appeared today as a link and comment from the web site The Hill.

It is about oil production and demand and what might be the new realities.

Given the key role of the USA in the world energy markets, let alone the major global companies based there then anything there applies here with added items.  But anything that oil touches is also affected.

The article does not mention any of these broader areas of contention and policy.  One is certainly food and its’ pricing as well as patterns of supply.  Historically, in the West we have had up to the recent period not just relatively cheap oil and fuels but cheap food.

If oil prices remain high enough to squeeze incomes and impact on savings and consumption then if other prices either of food or other basic oil dependent products rise appreciably then the disposable incomes of the bulk of our populations is going to shrink, both soon and sharply.

These considerations seem to be wholly absent from any of the political party games going on in the developed West.  Our “freedom” may soon be less than free and if wanted come at a far higher price.

And we will all get Austerity whether we like it or not.

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