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Saudi Arabia Oil Minister: Oil will end 2040

General discussions of the systemic, societal and civilisational effects of depletion.

Saudi Arabia Oil Minister: Oil will end 2040

Unread postby vox_mundi » Fri 22 May 2015, 16:45:17

So what to make of the statement by Saudi Arabia’s oil minister that the world’s biggest oil exporter could stop using fossil fuels as soon as 2040 and become a “global power” in solar and wind energy?

Ali Al-Naimi’s statement is striking as Saudi Arabia’s wealth and influence is entirely founded on its huge oil wealth and the nation has been one of the strongest voices against climate change action at UN summits.

“In Saudi Arabia, we recognise that eventually, one of these days, we’re not going to need fossil fuels,” said Naimi at a business and climate conference in Paris on Thursday. “I don’t know when - 2040, 2050 or thereafter. So we have embarked on a program to develop solar energy,” he said in comments reported by the Guardian, Bloomberg and the Financial Times. “Hopefully, one of these days, instead of exporting fossil fuels, we will be exporting gigawatts of electric power.”

Naimi also said he did not think that continuing low crude oil prices would make solar power uneconomic: “I believe solar will be even more economic than fossil fuels.”

http://www.theguardian.com/environment/ ... ay-of-hope

“Saudi Arabia is sending a strong signal to all oil producers and companies they must plan for an energy transition,” said Mark Fulton, former head of climate research at Deutsche Bank and advisor to the Carbon Tracker Initiative (CTI).

“If Saudi Arabia is starting to hedge its bets by developing solar capacity, this could change the fundamentals of the oil market,” said James Leaton, CTI head of research.

But Naimi also said that the idea of keeping most fossil fuels in the ground, as scientists say is necessary to tame climate change, “may be a great objective but it is going to take a long time” and needed to be put “in the back of our heads for a while”. He said fossil fuels will still dominate the world’s energy supply up to 2050.


http://adoptanegotiator.org/saudi-arabi ... -and-wind/

http://www.trust.org/item/2015052115562 ... view=print
“There are three classes of people: those who see. Those who see when they are shown. Those who do not see.” ― Leonardo da Vinci

Insensible before the wave so soon released by callous fate. Affected most, they understand the least, and understanding, when it comes, invariably arrives too late.
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Re: Saudi Arabia Oil Minister: Oil will end 2040

Unread postby rockdoc123 » Fri 22 May 2015, 17:14:19

A number of years ago SA embarked on a strategy to find what they assumed would be enormous gas reserves in the Rub Al Khali area. I attended the meetings in London with the Crown Prince and all the rest of the ministers...quite a big deal at the time as it was the first time since nationalization that the Saudis had invited open participation by foreign companies. The whole idea was they were burning enormous amounts of fuel oil to power desalination plants etc. With more natural gas at their disposal they could save the liquids and sell them which would be much more profitable. Unfortunately the Rub Al Khali gas strategy has proven to be a bust. But Saudis internal power needs continue to rise. What better way to offset burning liquids as fuel than to install solar etc?
So I don't think this is about Saudi saying we are running out of oil we need to convert but rather we want to insure that our main export is kept as export and not consumed internally. Hence offset that internal consumption as much by solar etc as you can.
Of course I might be wrong but this is in keeping with their strategy all along.
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Re: Saudi Arabia Oil Minister: Oil will end 2040

Unread postby kiwichick » Fri 22 May 2015, 18:50:36

@ rd

surely a backhanded acceptance that their oil reserves are finite
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Re: Saudi Arabia Oil Minister: Oil will end 2040

Unread postby evilgenius » Sat 23 May 2015, 11:13:29

rockdoc123 wrote:A number of years ago SA embarked on a strategy to find what they assumed would be enormous gas reserves in the Rub Al Khali area. I attended the meetings in London with the Crown Prince and all the rest of the ministers...quite a big deal at the time as it was the first time since nationalization that the Saudis had invited open participation by foreign companies. The whole idea was they were burning enormous amounts of fuel oil to power desalination plants etc. With more natural gas at their disposal they could save the liquids and sell them which would be much more profitable. Unfortunately the Rub Al Khali gas strategy has proven to be a bust. But Saudis internal power needs continue to rise. What better way to offset burning liquids as fuel than to install solar etc?
So I don't think this is about Saudi saying we are running out of oil we need to convert but rather we want to insure that our main export is kept as export and not consumed internally. Hence offset that internal consumption as much by solar etc as you can.
Of course I might be wrong but this is in keeping with their strategy all along.


I agree. When I read this I thought about the Export Land Model and how acting against that is always wise for a country like Saudi Arabia. They are dedicated to selling oil and using the proceeds to keep their little kingdom going. The last thing the king wants is to share power with the people. Using too much of their own oil to placate the people could eventually cramp the ruler's style.
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Re: Saudi Arabia Oil Minister: Oil will end 2040

Unread postby rockdoc123 » Sat 23 May 2015, 17:26:35

surely a backhanded acceptance that their oil reserves are finite


I don't think so. Of course their reserves are finite but how long is a piece of string. Finite for them could be more than a hundred billion barrels remaining. I doubt this is a driver at all. What drives them is profit. Why burn liquid hydrocarbons that can net you something in the order of $50/barrel even in this environment when you can offset the need at least partially with alternatives? Current consumption in Saudi Arabia is ~3 MMB/day. About 70% of that is liquids which would equate to about $38 billion per year of lost revenue. That compares to something in the order of $50 billion of deficit to their budget they are running this year.
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Re: Saudi Arabia Oil Minister: Oil will end 2040

Unread postby Outcast_Searcher » Mon 25 May 2015, 14:07:44

Given that this is a peak oil site, the title of this thread seems MIGHTY misleading to me.

Saudi Arabia claiming that they intend to be a green energy powerhouse by 2040 or so is NOT a reason to imply that we will run out of oil by 2040 in the title.
Given the track record of the perma-doomer blogs, I wouldn't bet a fast crash doomer's money on their predictions.
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