Image hosted by

Friday, August 17, 2007

Petroleum Murder

Petroleum Murder: Peak Oil, Militarisation, and America’s Proxy War in Somalia

By Tristen Taylor
August 2007

“We’ve embarked on the last days of the age of oil.”
-- Mike Bowlin, CEO of the US oil company ARCO (1999)

Something unheard of in human history is occurring – the global scarcity of a number of key material resources. The word in financial quarters is that it is impossible to buy zinc futures as the price is escalating too fast for the market to keep up. Essentially, the global demand for resources is beginning to outstrip production abilities, and financial markets have entered a long and very profitable commodity boom. Mining, oil, drilling and associated retail companies are making money as fast as stockbrokers can cash in.

In this general climate of increasing resource scarcity, one resource towers above all others - petroleum. Oil, fondly referred to as black gold, is the basis of the global economy. Everything around us owes its production and distribution to oil. Food is grown using machines burning diesel, transported in trucks and packaged in plastics that use petroleum as a feedstock. Our current method of civilisation is utterly dependent on oil and if the oil supply were to dry up tomorrow, the vast majority of us would starve to death in a matter of weeks. At best, survivors would be scratching out a Dark Age existence amidst the ruins of rusting BMWs and everlasting plastic Coca-Cola bottles, making snares for rats out of computer mouse cords.

The petroleum industry is vital to the life of every human being in the modern economy, yet it is a tightly controlled industry with only a handful of key players (see table next page), divided amongst state and private control. Of the ten biggest corporations in the world (as ranked by Fortune 500), five are oil and gas companies with a combined annual revenue of US$1,271,058,300,000.00, or 1.271 trillion dollars. By way of comparison, South Africa’s Gross Domestic Product is US$215,511,134,393.14, or 215.5 billion dollars.

Not a great deal has changed in the petroleum market since 1900 when Standard Oil controlled 50% of global sales.

Read the rest here.



Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home