Boone Pickens at the Peak Oil Conference

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Boone Pickens at the Peak Oil Conference

Steve Kobb
Last Friday, I attended the last big day of the ASPO-USA conference here in Houston. (ASPO: Association for the Study of Peak Oil). A lot of brilliant people spoke, but the most memorable was T. Boone Pickens. You may not like the right-wing politics of this famous oil man, but he obviously knows energy markets as well as anyone alive today. (

A woman in the audience shouted out: "What about Peak Oil?"

"Well, I've got a short answer for you," he said. "We've peaked. We're running out. For various technical reasons, world production will never be more than 85 million barrels a day. Period. The problem is that world demand is already at 88 million barrels a day and growing...

There's only one thing that can kill that demand, and that's higher prices...

I don't do wildcatting anymore. New fields are too hard to find, and what you do discover is too small.

The major oil companies are buying back their own stock, and that's a signal to the market that they cannot find enough new reserves to replace their exhausted properties."

So, the next time someone gives you a thumbs-down on your EV, and tells you that it's a big waste of time because we've got plenty of oil, invite him to call his futures broker and short crude. Guys like Boone Pickens will be happy to buy his contract.

When it comes time to close out that position, we'll see who winds up with more money in the bank: the Peak Oil Doubter.. or the people who really know what time it is.


Steve Kobb