Chapter 5

Crude Oil

Abstract

Oil has been the number one source of energy in the world since the middle of the twentieth century. The world is very dependent on petroleum for transportation fuels, petrochemicals and asphalt. But ever increasing demand has caused the price of oil to spike in recent years, and only the world economic crisis has been able to temper demand and bring the price down to more reasonable levels. However, the demand and price are likely to shoot up again when the economy recovers. At the same time, the peak oil theory of M. King Hubbert predicts that world oil production is likely to peak soon. This prediction raises questions about what source of energy will come to the fore when oil is not able to keep up.

Keywords

peak oil ...

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