Nisam stigao prevodit iznimno interesantnu (kao i uvijek) teoriju (?) Engdahla, pa za one koji nisu vec citali evo na engleskom…
War and “Peak Oil”
Confessions of an ‘ex’ Peak Oil believer
By F. William Engdahl
Global Research, September 26, 2007
Confessions of an ‘ex’ Peak Oil believer
The good news is that panic scenarios about the world running out of oil anytime soon are wrong. The bad news is that the price of oil is going to continue to rise. Peak Oil is not our problem. Politics is. Big Oil wants to sustain high oil prices. Dick Cheney and friends are all too willing to assist.
On a personal note, I’ve researched questions of petroleum, since the first oil shocks of the 1970’s. I was intrigued in 2003 with something called Peak Oil theory. It seemed to explain the otherwise inexplicable decision by Washington to risk all in a military move on Iraq.
Peak Oil advocates, led by former BP geologist Colin Campbell, and Texas banker Matt Simmons, argued that the world faced a new crisis, an end to cheap oil, or Absolute Peak Oil, perhaps by 2012, perhaps by 2007. Oil was supposedly on its last drops. They pointed to our soaring gasoline and oil prices, to the declines in output of North Sea and Alaska and other fields as proof they were right.
According to Campbell, the fact that no new North Sea-size fields had been discovered since the North Sea in the late 1960’s was proof. He reportedly managed to convince the International Energy Agency and the Swedish government. That, however, does not prove him correct.
The Peak Oil school rests its theory on conventional Western geology textbooks, most by American or British geologists, which claim oil is a ‘fossil fuel,’ a biological residue or detritus of either fossilized dinosaur remains or perhaps algae, hence a product in finite supply. Biological origin is central to Peak Oil theory, used to explain why oil is only found in certain parts of the world where it was geologically trapped millions of years ago. That would mean that, say, dead dinosaur remains became compressed and over tens of millions of years fossilized and trapped in underground reservoirs perhaps 4-6,000 feet below the surface of the earth. In rare cases, so goes the theory, huge amounts of biological matter should have been trapped in rock formations in the shallower ocean offshore as in the Gulf of Mexico or North Sea or Gulf of Guinea. Geology should be only about figuring out where these pockets in the layers of the earth, called reservoirs, lie within certain sedimentary basins.
An entirely alternative theory of oil formation has existed since the early 1950’s in Russia, almost unknown to the West. It claims conventional American biological origins theory is an unscientific absurdity that is un-provable. They point to the fact that western geologists have repeatedly predicted finite oil over the past century, only to then find more, lots more.
Not only has this alternative explanation of the origins of oil and gas existed in theory. The emergence of Russia and prior of the USSR as the world’s largest oil producer and natural gas producer has been based on the application of the theory in practice. This has geopolitical consequences of staggering magnitude.
Necessity: the mother of invention
In the 1950’s the Soviet Union faced ‘Iron Curtain’ isolation from the West. The Cold War was in high gear. Russia had little oil to fuel its economy. Finding sufficient oil indigenously was a national security priority of the highest order.
Scientists at the Institute of the Physics of the Earth of the Russian Academy of Sciences and the Institute of Geological Sciences of the Ukraine Academy of Sciences began a fundamental inquiry in the late 1940’s: where does oil come from?
In 1956, Prof. Vladimir Porfir’yev announced their conclusions: ‘Crude oil and natural petroleum gas have no intrinsic connection with biological matter originating near the surface of the earth. They are primordial materials which have been erupted from great depths.’ The Soviet geologists had turned Western orthodox geology on its head. They called their theory of oil origin the ‘a-biotic’ theory—non-biological—to distinguish from the Western biological theory of origins.
If they were right, oil supply on earth would be limited only by the amount of organic hydrocarbon constituents present deep in the earth at the time of the earth’s formation. Availability of oil would depend only on technology to drill ultra-deep wells and explore into the earth’s inner regions. They also realized old fields could be revived to continue producing, so called self-replentishing fields. They argued that oil is formed deep in the earth, formed in conditions of very high temperature and very high pressure, like that required for diamonds to form. ‘Oil is a primordial material of deep origin which is transported at high pressure via ‘cold’ eruptive processes into the crust of the earth,’ Porfir’yev stated. His team dismissed the idea that oil is biological residue of plant and animal fossil remains as a hoax designed to perpetuate the myth of limited supply.
Defying conventional geology
That radically different Russian and Ukrainian scientific approach to the discovery of oil allowed the USSR to develop huge gas and oil discoveries in regions previously judged unsuitable, according to Western geological exploration theories, for presence of oil. The new petroleum theory was used in the early 1990’s, well after the dissolution of the USSR, to drill for oil and gas in a region believed for more than forty-five years, to be geologically barren—the Dnieper-Donets Basin in the region between Russia and Ukraine.
Following their a-biotic or non-fossil theory of the deep origins of petroleum, the Russian and Ukrainian petroleum geophysicists and chemists began with a detailed analysis of the tectonic history and geological structure of the crystalline basement of the Dnieper-Donets Basin. After a tectonic and deep structural analysis of the area, they made geophysical and geochemical investigations.
A total of sixty one wells were drilled, of which thirty seven were commercially productive, an extremely impressive exploration success rate of almost sixty percent. The size of the field discovered compared with the North Slope of Alaska. By contrast, US wildcat drilling was considered successful with a ten percent success rate. Nine of ten wells are typically “dry holes.”
That Russian geophysics experience in finding oil and gas was tightly wrapped in the usual Soviet veil of state security during the Cold War era, and went largely unknown to Western geophysicists, who continued to teach fossil origins and, hence, the severe physical limits of petroleum. Slowly it begin to dawn on some strategists in and around the Pentagon well after the 2003 Iraq war, that the Russian geophysicists might be on to something of profound strategic importance.
If Russia had the scientific know-how and Western geology not, Russia possessed a strategic trump card of staggering geopolitical import. It was not surprising that Washington would go about erecting a “wall of steel”—a network of military bases and ballistic anti-missile shields around Russia, to cut her pipeline and port links to western Europe, China and the rest of Eurasia. Halford Mackinder’s worst nightmare–a cooperative convergence of mutual interests of the major states of Eurasia, born of necessity and need for oil to fuel economic growth–was emerging. Ironically, it was the blatant US grab for the vast oil riches of Iraq and, potentially, of Iran, that catalyzed closer cooperation between traditional Eurasian foes, China and Russia, and a growing realization in western Europe that their options too were narrowing.
The Peak King
Peak Oil theory is based on a 1956 paper done by the late Marion King Hubbert, a Texas geologist working for Shell Oil. He argued that oil wells produced in a bell curve manner, and once their “peak” was hit, inevitable decline followed. He predicted the United States oil production would peak in 1970. A modest man, he named the production curve he invented, Hubbert’s Curve, and the peak as Hubbert’s Peak. When US oil output began to decline in around 1970 Hubbert gained a certain fame.
The only problem was, it peaked not because of resource depletion in the US fields. It “peaked” because Shell, Mobil, Texaco and the other partners of Saudi Aramco were flooding the US market with dirt cheap Middle East imports, tariff free, at prices so low California and many Texas domestic producers could not compete and were forced to shut their wells in.
While the American oil multinationals were busy controlling the easily accessible large fields of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Iran and other areas of cheap, abundant oil during the 1960’s, the Russians were busy testing their alternative theory. They began drilling in a supposedly barren region of Siberia. There they developed eleven major oil fields and one Giant field based on their deep ‘a-biotic’ geological estimates. They drilled into crystalline basement rock and hit black gold of a scale comparable to the Alaska North Slope.
They then went to Vietnam in the 1980s and offered to finance drilling costs to show that their new geological theory worked. The Russian company Petrosov drilled Vietnam’s White Tiger oilfield offshore into basalt rock some 17,000 feet down and extracted 6,000 barrels a day of oil to feed the energy-starved Vietnam economy. In the USSR, a-biotic-trained Russian geologists perfected their knowledge and the USSR emerged as the world’s largest oil producer by the mid-1980’s. Few in the West understood why, or bothered to ask.
Dr. J. F. Kenney is one of the only Western geophysicists who has taught and worked in Russia, studying under Vladilen Krayushkin, who developed the huge Dnieper-Donets Basin. Kenney told me in a recent interview that “alone to have produced the amount of oil to date that (Saudi Arabia’s) Ghawar field has produced would have required a cube of fossilized dinosaur detritus, assuming 100% conversion efficiency, measuring 19 miles deep, wide and high.” In short, an absurdity.
Western geologists do not bother to offer hard scientific proof of fossil origins. They merely assert it as a holy truth. The Russians have produced volumes of scientific papers, most in Russian. The dominant Western journals have no interest in publishing such a revolutionary view. Careers, entire academic professions are at stake after all.
Closing the door
The 2003 arrest of Russian Mikhail Khodorkovsky, of Yukos Oil, took place just before he could sell a dominant stake in Yukos to ExxonMobil after Khodorkovsky had a private meeting with Dick Cheney. Had Exxon got the stake they would have got control of the world’s largest resource of geologists and engineers trained in the a-biotic techniques of deep drilling.
Since 2003 Russian scientific sharing of their knowledge has markedly lessened. Offers in the early 1990’s to share their knowledge with US and other oil geophysicists were met with cold rejection according to American geophysicists involved.
Why then the high-risk war to control Iraq? For a century US and allied Western oil giants have controlled world oil via control of Saudi Arabia or Kuwait or Nigeria. Today, as many giant fields are declining, the companies see the state-controlled oilfields of Iraq and Iran as the largest remaining base of cheap, easy oil. With the huge demand for oil from China and now India, it becomes a geopolitical imperative for the United States to take direct, military control of those Middle East reserves as fast as possible. Vice President Dick Cheney, came to the job from Halliburton Corp., the world’s largest oil geophysical services company. The only potential threat to that US control of oil just happens to lie inside Russia and with the now-state-controlled Russian energy giants. Hmmmm.
According to Kenney the Russian geophysicists used the theories of the brilliant German scientist Alfred Wegener fully 30 years before the Western geologists “discovered” Wegener in the 1960’s. In 1915 Wegener published the seminal text, The Origin of Continents and Oceans, which suggested an original unified landmass or “pangaea” more than 200 million years ago which separated into present Continents by what he called Continental Drift.
Up to the 1960’s supposed US scientists such as Dr Frank Press, White House science advisor referred to Wegener as “lunatic.” Geologists at the end of the 1960’s were forced to eat their words as Wegener offered the only interpretation that allowed them to discover the vast oil resources of the North Sea. Perhaps in some decades Western geologists will rethink their mythology of fossil origins and realize what the Russians have known since the 1950’s. In the meantime Moscow holds a massive energy trump card.
Kad je prije cca godinu dana Radical Element objavio pricu o Ameru, nekako mi je izgledala nestvarna mogucnost ujedinjavanja sjevernoamerickih valuta pod jednim nazivom ‘Amero’.
No u svjetlu nedavnih dogadjanja s FEDsima i dolarom ne izgleda vise toliko nevjerovatno...
Dollar Crisis: None dare call it ‘conspiracy’
By Hal Lindsey
Global Research, November 11, 2007
Crude oil prices hit an all-time high this week, closing above $98 a barrel for the first time in history.
According to the AAA, many drivers in my home state of California are already paying more than $4 a gallon for regular unleaded gas. And in one town south of Big Sur, unleaded gas topped $5 a gallon.
The U.S. dollar is at an all-time low, even when compared against the hapless Canadian loonie. Five years ago, a loonie was worth 60 cents. Today, it’s worth $1.12 and climbing.
Yesterday, WorldNetDaily reported that the Chinese are considering abandoning the U.S. dollar as their national reserve currency. WND quoted Craig Smith’s assessment of the consequences of such a move by Beijing on our economy: “If that were to happen, all bets are off, and we will be in a depression that makes 1929 look like child’s play, or we will experience Weimar Republic inflation as the dollar makes extreme moves toward devaluations.”
On Tuesday, the U.S. national debt topped $9 trillion for the first time in history, according to the U.S. Treasury Department’s daily accounting of the national debt. Nine trillion dollars! The number is so staggeringly high that it exceeds our ability to comprehend it in monetary units.
Million, billion, trillion – in financial terms, for most of us, it means a lot of money, really a lot of money, but that is about as specific a picture as most ordinary people can grasp.
Let’s put all these “illions” into perspective. A million seconds is roughly 12 days, whereas a billion seconds is approximately 32 years.
We understand dollars. And we understand time. So it would take 12 days to pay back a million dollars at a dollar a second. But if you started right now, you’d pay back a BILLION dollars, at a dollar a second, in the year 2039.
A trillion seconds is roughly 32 thousand years. At a dollar a second, you’d pay back a TRILLION dollars in the year 34007.
The U.S. debt stands at $9 trillion. If my calculator is working, then at a dollar a second, the U.S. could be debt- free in the year 290007.
The point of that little exercise was two-fold. The first was to clarify the sheer volume of the debt; the second was to demonstrate the possibility that anybody in government really believes we can ever pay it off.
Each U.S. citizen’s share of the national debt works out, according to the National Debt clock, to $29,947.50. That means the average American family of five owes, collectively, $149,737.50.
It also means that unless the average American family of five has a net worth of at least $149,737,50 in assets excluding liabilities (they don’t), America is already bankrupt.
Over the past few years, there has been growing public concern about the emerging “Security and Prosperity Partnership” plan that some say is really a “deceptive roadmap” to a coming North American Union and a new, unified currency tentatively called the “amero.”
The feds steadfastly deny such a plan exists, even as it opens the borders to Mexican truck traffic, widens the I-35 corridor from Mexico to Canada and, counterintuitively, refuses to tighten the borders with either Mexico or Canada, despite both logic and widespread public demand.
All of these things have brought me to believe that powerful forces outside of our government – like the shadowy international Money Trust members of the “Bilderberg Group” – made a decision to force the formation of the North American Union along with the amero. There decisions have been instituted in the past via the Trilateral Commission, which is the dba for the nefarious Conference on Foreign Relations. Destroying the American dollar could force the crisis that would force the creation of the North American Union. To quote the title of a book of the 1960s era, “None Dare Call It Conspiracy.”
Ordinary Americans may not fully grasp just how dire the true economic picture is, but you can bet our leaders do. Yet from the White House to the Federal Reserve, nobody seems particularly eager to address the issue, preferring instead to talk about the “budget,” as if the budget WERE the debt, rather than merely a measure of our ability to keep up with our payments on the debt.
It is almost as if they already have a Plan B in reserve, ready and waiting to be triumphantly introduced – just in the nick of time.
I wonder what it might be?
Inace, uobicajeni Bushov komentar na pitanje o cijenama nafte je u stilu: “We have a strong plan!”Da, od prije 2001 godine, i to vrlo uspjesan…Vidite samo sponzore tadasnje predsjednicke kampanje…
Alan Greenspan smatra da su trenutna previranja u mnogim aspektima identična onima koja su obilježila 1987. i 1998. godinu.
“Tržišna kretanja posljednjih sedam tjedana u mnogim su aspektima identična onima 1998., kao i onima koja su dovela do burzovnog kraha 1987.”, kazao je bivši predsjednik američke središnje banke Fed Greenspan u četvrtak navečer u Washingtonu, na događaju kojeg je organizirao akademski časopis Brookings Papers on Economic Activity.
Poslovna ekspanzija rezultat je euforije dok su kontrakcije rezultat straha ulagača, kazao je nadalje Greenspan, koji se na čelu Fed-a nalazio od 1987.-2005. No, i dalje je prisutan u svijetu financija kao konzultant Deutsche Bank i savjetnik Gordona Browna.
Naime, ekonomisti općenito vjeruju da isti čimbenici potiču i ekspanzije i kontrakcije, no Greenspan ističe da je faza gospodarskog rasta nešto posve drugo, dok je strah – a to je ono što je nastupilo sada – daleko potentnija sila od euforije, prenosi nadalje Wall Street Journal.
U 1998. hedge fond Long-Term Capital Management raspolagao je sa 100 milijardi dolara kapitala, ali je propao pod pritiskom ruske dužničke krize, koja je poharala mnoga tržišta derivata i izazvala slom na azijskim burzama.
Na cijelu se priču odlično nadovezuje i misteriozni investitor koji riskira gubitak od jedne milijarde dolara ukoliko Dow Jones Eurostoxx 50 indeks ne izgubi između jedne trećine i polovine vrijednosti do 21. rujna.
Investitor je stavio 245.000 opcija za prodaju dionica navedenog indeksa, a financijski ugovor takvog tipa između dvije strane omogućava zaradu kupcu jedino u slučaju pada vrijednosti imovine koja je predmet ugovora.
Brokeri su već nazvali ovaj dogovor „bin Ladenovska trgovina“, jer bi samo neki događaj magnitude 9-11 mogao jako srušiti vrijednost indeksa i omogućiti zaradu na tako kratkoročnom poslu. Naime, u slučaju takvog pada, nepoznati investitor zaradio bi oko dvije milijarde dolara.
Druga moguća katastrofa bila bi odluka Kine da ispuni prijetnje i sruši dolar rasprodajom svojih ogromnih dolarskih rezervi po „veleprodajnim cijenama“. (bold by Monsoon)
Slična kataklizmička predviđanja dolaze i od teksaškog kongresmena i predsjedničkog kandidata Ron Paula, koji tvrdi da su svi pokušaji FED-a da spasi tržište „bacanje novaca u rupu“ i da je ekonomski kolaps neminovan.
The coming collapse of the US dollar
M R Venkatesh | June 11, 2007 | 15:51 IST
The skew in the global financial system — commonly called ‘global imbalance’ — seems to be fast spiralling out of control.
For some time now economists have been engaged in the mother of all debates: whether the US dollar would collapse by as much as 40% when compared to other currencies (some are even betting on the US dollar going belly-up) or whether there would be an orderly devaluation — that is, a gradual revaluation of other currencies vis-�-vis the US dollar.
In effect, the question that is confronting us is not ‘whether’ but ‘when’ and by ‘how much.’
This global imbalance can be understood in economic terms by simply examining the massive size of America’s twin deficits — trade and budgetary. Put modestly, Americans have been living way beyond their means, consuming much more than what they could possibly afford and, in the process, borrowing far beyond their capacity for too long.
This was facilitated by a policy of maintaining weak currencies across the world, notably in Asia. This policy of maintaining a competitive exchange rate for their currency to boost exports has resulted in a race to the bottom amongst various countries.
Nevertheless, this arrangement suited countries, both Asian (with a huge unemployed population) and American, (as it provided cheap imports for its huge consumption binge).
While the going was good, everyone profited and expected the arrangement to continue indefinitely. Unfortunately, linearity as a concept has limited appeal in real life, much less is global macroeconomics.
No wonder, of late, countries are discovering that this arrangement has its limitations. The current account deficit of the United States translates into current account surplus of exporting countries. To cover this deficit, US borrows: this corresponds to the forex reserves of exporting countries. The crux of the issue is that no other country, barring the US, has such a huge consumption pattern and an ability to absorb this huge export surplus.
In substance, countries are producing their goods, exporting it mostly to the US, and parking the resulting export surpluses with the US to facilitate US to finance its imports!
Clearly, the global imbalance is a by-product of this mindless competition by various countries to devalue their own currencies and the reckless consumption in US. Naturally, it is indeed tempting to blame US consumption for this crisis. However, one must hasten to add that the emerging economies — notably Asian countries, especially after the1998 currency crisis — with their fixation for weak currencies, are equally to be blamed.
The net result? Well, consider these facts:
By mid-May 2007, the US National Debt stood at approximately at mind-boggling $8.85 trillion — i.e. approximately $28,000 for every American.
The basic structure of the American economy is that the deficit of the US government is 4% of the GDP and the household sector 6%, which are offset by a domestic savings of 3%, largely from corporates, leaving a substantial national deficit of 7% to be covered by the capital flows from the rest of the world.
The current account deficit of the United States for 2006 is estimated to be in excess of $850 billion. This approximates to 7% of its GDP. Surely, even for the US, this is unsustainable.
In order to ensure that this money is routed into America and to sustain its gargantuan borrowing programme, the US has repeatedly raised its interest rate to its current levels of 5.5%. While the very size of the US debt makes any further increase in interest rates virtually impossible (as it would make borrowings uneconomical), any cut in interest rates to stimulate its economy and make it competitive would mean that the US may not get the money it requires to sustain itself.
On March 28, 2006, the Asian Development Bank is reported to have issued a memo, advising members to be ready for a collapse of the US dollar.
Since end March 2006, the US Federal Reserve has stopped publishing the quantum of broad money (that is the aggregate of US dollars circulating in the entire world — technically called ‘M3’) in the US economy. This is the worst possible signal that the US Federal Reserve could have sent to the world.
Suspended sense of disbelief
Obviously, what aids and sustains the US dollar is a ‘suspended sense of disbelief’ amongst countries about the value of US dollar. Yet, common sense tells us that the excess supply will obviously result in a fall in the value of any product. The US dollar is no exception.
Late Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein was fully aware of this paradigm. Seeking to exploit the inherent weakness of the US dollar, Saddam wanted to trade his crude in Euros, which would have lead to a lower demand for the US Dollar and thereby triggered a dollar collapse. And those were his ‘weapons of mass destruction — WMD.’
And if some analysts are to be believed, Venezuela and Iran too possess the very same WMD. Naturally, it requires some specious arguments and military intervention to protect the US dollar. Never in the history of mankind has a national army protected the national currency so vigorously as the US Army has done is the past decade or so.
What is bizarre to note here is that despite the fact that crude is produced mainly in the Middle East; officially it can be purchased in dollar terms from one of the two oil exchanges situated in New York and London. Obviously, should Iran carry out the threat to commence oil trade in Euros or better still an oil exchange, the US dollar would come under tremendous pressure.
The US dollar is akin to the promissory note of a defunct finance company. It is common knowledge that a currency, when not backed by anything precious is just a piece of paper. When US abandoned the Gold Standard in early 70s, countries habituated by then to the US dollar under the Bretton Woods arrangement continued to accept the US dollar as an international currency without demur as the world was not prepared for any other alternative. Else, the global economy would have collapsed by 1971.
But the diplomatic silence did not solve the problem. It merely postponed it and it has come back to haunt us.
Post gold standard, by a tacit approval of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and strategic manoeuvring, the US had ensured that its currency is implicitly backed by crude, instead of gold. This explains the American ‘geo-political and strategic interests’ in the Middle East.
But over time even this was found to be insufficient and consequently the oil standard of the 70s gave way to an implicit multiple commodity standard of today. Naturally, commodity prices — including crude prices — have soared in the past few years. Unfortunately, this arrangement too is failing the US. No wonder, the US dollar increasingly resembles a promisory note of a defunct finance company.
It is no coincidence that global trade in most commodities, including oil, is denominated in US dollars as the respective international exchanges are located in the US. To what extent are the prices of these commodities manipulated to protect the US dollar is anybody’s guess.
However, it may not be out of place to mention that a barrel of oil which cost less than $10 to produce is sold approximately at $70 in the international market.
But as commodity prices go up it has lead to�inflation across the globe. No wonder, countries are forced to increase their interest rates to fight inflation.
This has triggered an interest rate hike across continents and the US is finding it extremely difficult to sustain its current borrowing programme: it hardly has any elbow room to manoeuvre.
Doomed if it does, damned if it doesn’t
Meanwhile, countries are increasingly realizing that the value of the US dollar that they are holding is fast eroding, whatever be the ‘officially managed exchange rate.’ And if fewer people want the US dollar — as for instance when oil is traded in Euro the demand for the US dollar will fall — it would trigger an avalanche.
No wonder, the US Fed is unwilling to make public the M3 figures, as it does not want the holding position of the US dollar to be publicised.
Interestingly, in such a doomsday scenario, some economists are still betting on central banks of other countries to defend the US dollar. It would seem that the US has ‘outsourced’ even this sovereign function to the central banks of other countries. After all, should the US dollar collapse, the biggest losers will not be the US but those who have US dollar-denominated forex reserves.
Naturally, countries holding US dollar reserves are caught on the horns of a serious dilemma — should they seek to correct the global imbalance, it could result in the imminent collapse of the US dollar, and should they continue to defend the US dollar, they would be a long-term loser as the current arrangement has seeds of self-destruction.
While every central banker is conscious of this fact and thereby seeks to postpone the inevitable while nervously looking for his counterpart in any other country to break ranks and thereby trigger the collapse.
Surely, the emperor is without any clothes. There are only two possibilities from here on: Either we are witness a global meltdown of the US dollar, or allow controlled US dollar devaluation (read, revaluation of other currencies). If it is a global meltdown the global economy is doomed, if is an orderly devaluation, it is damned.
The author is a Chennai-based Chartered Accountant. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.