John Hofmeister doesn’t call it ‘peak oil,’ instead he calls it the ‘energy abyss,’ the point at which the global economy ceases to grow because the oil industry can no longer meet demand.
Hofmeister is the former president of Shell Oil, the same Shell Oil that is preparing to drill the deepest hole yet drilled to reach oil and gas 200 miles out in the Gulf of Mexico in 9,500 feet (2,900m) of water, surpassing the working depth of Shell’s Perdido rig, also located out in the Gulf and producing around 100,000 barrels a day. The cost of that rig: $3 billion.
In his 2010 book, Why We Hate The Oil Companies, Straight talk from an energy insider, he wrote the following:
“It’s inevitable. The industry that produces oil can’t produce enough, unless the world doesn’t grow. It’s possible that we will have such expensive oil that we will stymie growth. How many people will suffer? How many poor will become poorer, while rich become richer because we have failed rational tests of creating alternative competitive fuels? We have a choice to condemn ourselves to an energy abyss in the name of the status quo and lack of enlightened leadership, or we can choose to develop alternatives.
Why aren’t we more thoughtful about the future? Why don’t we begin the journey towards a range of alternatives that delivers increased national security, increased economic security, and multiple choice for consumers?