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Matthew L Simmons
Matt Simmons had never heard of peak oil just five years ago, this despite spending a life time in energy investment banking. Now he is one of the leading advocates calling for the need for a true and accurate accounting of all available petroleum reserves and depletion rates, the object being to know precisely how much oil and gas the planet has left.

How I Came to Believe in Peak Oil

Houston investment banker and “Twilight in the Desert” author Matthew Simmons talks about his conversion to a peak oil advocate.

By EV World

It was near the end of the Clinton Administration when an assistant to newly appointed Energy Secretary Bill Richardson called Matt Simmons and asked him to prepare a multi-bullet pointed brief on the current state of the oil and gas industry. The term “peak oil” never appeared in that document, Simmons told an audience of some 500 industry professionals, academicians, environmentalists, students, media and interested members of the public.

In 2000, the Bush presidential campaign asked him to prepare a similar document and again, “peak oil” wasn't to be found. Why? Because as late as 2002, a man who has spent more than three decades vetting and financing more than $60 billion dollars in energy projects around the world was completely unaware of the notion that someday soon the demand for oil and gas will outstrip the industry's ability to supply it.

Today however, Simmons – who says he still spends 50-70 hours a week studying energy production data – is convinced the world is facing a crisis of profoundly disruptive significance. In fact, during his 28-minute talk, which EV World recorded to video and is featured below, he speculates that if world oil production remains flat or continues to decline as it has the last six months, then the world may have reached peak already.

As anyone who has studied peak oil will readily attest, the point at which demand exceeds production doesn't mean there is on more oil to exploit. It means there will be progressively less cheap oil available and the world will have to turn to more difficult to reach, dirtier in terms of carbon and other pollutants, and more difficult to refine; all of which means it will cost far more in the future. Peak oil isn't about the end of oil, just the end of cheap oil, and that in itself will have profound implications for modern society.

EV World recorded some 40 different presentations from the ASPO USA conference, as well as Q&A panels, which we'll make available to our Premium subscribers in the coming weeks. If you are not a subscriber, we encourage you to spend the $29.00US fee in order to get access to these important talks by some of the world's top minds.

Non-subscribers can also buy a CD with all of the presentations on it in MP3 format for $89.00US, shipping included. Subscribers can order the complete CD for $45US. If you're interested in ordering this CD, send email to: editor@evworld.com for details.

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