I hate to say I told you so, but…
In 2012, the International Energy Agency (IEA) forecast that the US would outpace Saudi Arabia in oil production thanks to the shale boom by 2020, becoming a net exporter by 2030. The forecast was seen by many as decisive evidence of the renewal of the oil age, while informed detractors were at best ignored, at worst ridiculed.
Among my many reports exposing the geological and economic fallacies behind the shale boom narrative are this, this, this and this.
Even here on the Guardian, one headline declared the IEA report shows that “peak oil idea has gone up in flames.”
But the IEA’s latest assessment has proved the detractors right all along. The agency’s World Energy Investment Outlook released this week says that US tight oil production – which draws largely from the Bakken in North Dakota and the Eagle Ford in Texas – will peak around 2020 before declining.
The new analysis puts an end to the ‘100 year supply’ myth widely promulgated by industry, and moves closer to the more sceptical assessment of a US tight oil peak within this decade.