• Mar 8th 2011 at 7:52PM
  • 63
Do you remember 2008, when the cost of gas in the U.S. jumped to levels people just weren't ready for? When gas prices soared to $3.50 an above that year, we saw the U.S. public panic, and some changed their car-buying habits (for a while, at least).
The 2011 version could come when a gallon of gasoline exceeds $4.50, says Paul Taylor, chief economist for the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA). Taylor thinks $4.50 is when consumer interest will shift towards more fuel efficient-rides, and claims that gas prices must exceed the average American's comfort zone to have a noticeable impact on the automotive industry, stating:
Generally it takes a level that consumers have not seen before. Gasoline prices in excess of $4.50 per gallon are likely to have a more dramatic increase upon consumer choices.
Yesterday, March 7th, the average rate for a gallon of gas in the U.S. was $3.46. While that's more than a buck below Taylor's industry-changing $4.50 price, one glance at Gas Buddy's historical price rate chart seems to indicate that the cost of fuel will continue to rise, eventually hitting Taylor's tipping point.

[Source: Automotive News – sub. req. | Image: micah.d – C.C. License 2.0]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 4 Years Ago
      oh I see.
      Last time it was $4.00...
      So it is like a steroid cycle.
      Up a bit and down a bit and leave a little extra peak each time.
      So I guess next time $5 will be the tipping point... and on and on until they have us up to a good $7 or $8 and we still putter away in pickup trucks with nothing in the back and nobody up front but the driver and his coffee.

      I know the answer.... 'drill'!
      I haven't heard that BS start up yet.
      But then I haven't had the tv or radio on much in the last week either.
        • 8 Months Ago
        I did.
        If you follow the GOP candidates, they are pilling up the manure Exxon and the Koch Brothers want to hear, right now.

        We are being controlled by two insane crackpots, who are attempting to BAN wind power in Wisconsin right now. I kid you not. This is what it's like to live in a country where the King is NUTS.
        • 8 Months Ago
        Saw in the news about Obama thinking of opening the oil reserves and I have seen comments blaming him for not doing it quick enough. People apparently miss that this is a long term problem and opening reserves is only a band-aid. We can't do the same every time there is a disruption in the supply. There seriously needs to be more effort to address the oil situation.
      • 4 Years Ago
      So Americans have gotten richer since 2008, so they won't be bothered by spending more for gas in 2011 until it is a dollar higher?

      When did I miss the memo where we all got more money to burn sometime between 2008 and now?
        • 8 Months Ago
        The top 1% took all the money.
        They are richer, they decide what is news and what is said on the news.
        So, you got a raise. You must have forgot.
        • 8 Months Ago
        Yea Nixon, I heard on the news a week or so ago when the first spike up to $103 and change for a barrel of oil occurred. I heard a financial analyst say the economy is in better shape than it was in 2008 so the economy will survive these oil spikes no problem. I guess he is talking about Wall Street and not Main Street. The less well off will have no easier time handling this spike in oil than the one in 2008. Some of the asinine comments you hear from the financial folks whose firm got bailouts two years ago, are really out of touch with the tax payers who are/will clean up their mess.

        I thought oil prices would recede when the Saudis announced they have our backs and will gladly pump out more oil to fill any shortages. But oil prices only went down for a day or two, now they are rising as strong as ever, so now what is the King going to do for me?
      • 4 Years Ago
      I know that gas station! It's near Vanderbilt University - Their prices ARE high!
      • 4 Years Ago
      Bicycling Rocks...especially if you can ride to work. I was able to ride my bike to work for 7 years when the weather was good.

      Just like when the stock market passes certain numbers, I think the public will take notice once it passes $4.00 and $4.50.

      I recently graphed gas prices vs. electricity prices on my blog: http://www.pluginrecharge.com/2010/12/three-key-advantages-for-going-electric.html

      • 4 Years Ago
      Well duh! is absolutely right. And the price of gasoline in Santa Barbara CA this week is $4.33 cents for unleaded regular.

      Which means that all those driving hybrids or PHEVs are #WINNING. Duh.
        • 4 Years Ago
        David Martin: So what we have here is a deadly cocktail of peak-oil, exploding demand for oil in countries like China and India and revolution sweeping through the Middle East that is not the beginning of freedom and democracy in that part of the world like our ignorant news outlets and politicians would have us believe, but will eventually see anti-western religious loons take control of most of the world's oil supply. So...yes we're screwed!
        • 8 Months Ago
        David Martin: Cheery thoughts indeed...Don't forget the role of the financial markets though. We are not the only ones feeling that all of this has to end in tears. Hugh amounts of capital is flooding from stocks to commodities as a safe haven. This may be one of the main causes of the exploding food prices that caused the unrest in the Middle East in the first place. There is a very successful campaign going on to blame biofuels and higher energy prices for it but I don't buy it. This flight of capital into commodities in face of a deteriorating economic outlook is an extra and probably major contributing factor in the cycle of high oil prices-high food prices-instability you describe.
        • 4 Years Ago
        And Kicking Osama's Ass.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Hi electronx.
        My own cheery thought is that we are entering a chronic and self feeding cycle of high oil prices causing instability which further reduces output.
        At the root of this of course are geological limits to cheap oil production, and if they did not exist the cycle could not get going.
        Once it has though the logic goes like this:
        High oil prices cause rising costs for food and kerosene for cooking in poorer countries, and amongst the poor in the oil exporters.
        This leads to rioting and unrest, which destabilises regimes and reduces as in Libya's case the ability to exploit the oil which does remain.
        Many think that some sort of resolution will happen in Libya and exports pick up again, which is possible in an individual case but the unrest and conflict is in fact endemic in the Middle East and Africa, and since restrictions on oil supplies caused by the unrest raise food and kerosene together with transport costs still more then still further unrest in guaranteed to break out.
        Watch Angola very carefully as well as the Middle Eastern countries that everyone has their eye on.

        So you have a self-feeding chain, and even such oil as does exist becomes very difficult to exploit.
        The unrest doesn't even need to cause output in Saudi to drop to have catastrophic consequences, as second tier suppliers will do perfectly well.

        The upside such as it is is perhaps that shares in Nissan, Renault et al should be a very safe bet indeed, up to the point where the economy totally collapses.
        • 4 Years Ago
        if you follow wall street thief's, the price of oil is rising due to speculators not what OPEC is doing or not...so pretty much commodities trades are driving prices up...it only cost the thief's in wall street 1000 barrels of oil in commodity trades to manipulate prices to gain profits on short falls...
        • 8 Months Ago
        Great analysis David Martin.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I wish we were kicking Osama's ass.
        What's it been, 8 years? and we still haven't found the guy?

        We get most of our oil from Canada, which is just as bad if not worse; they get their oil from oil sands, shale, and other crap oil that is so carbon intensive to process, you may as well take your emissions and double or triple them.
        • 4 Years Ago
        'Jeff Currie, the bank's oil guru, said Saudi output had quietly crept up by 700,000 barrels a day (bpd) even before the Libyan supply shock.

        Assumptions that OPEC has added 1.9m bpd over the last two years are wishful thinking. These new fields have been "largely offset" by attrition in old fields.

        "We believe that OPEC spare capacity has already dropped below 2m bpd. The question therefore arises how much spare capacity is left to absorb potential supply disruptions in other countries," he said. '


        Translation for those who do not follow energy issues:
        We are screwed.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Those who are driving hybrids and PHEV's are winning. The people driving EV's are hero's, almost superheros really. Saving America, one EV mile at a time!
      • 4 Years Ago
      At what point to they stop electing green politicians?
        • 8 Months Ago
        When they saw solar, wind and hybrids could have a real impact.

        Oil and Coal should have invested 50% of profits for the last 20 years on clean, low or no carbon solutions. Instead they buy politicians.
        Exxon should have OWNED Wind.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Wait a second... You don't call 30 mpg an "efficient car" in the USA?
      • 4 Years Ago
      It hasn’t gotten much attention but Steven Chu, President-elect Barack Obama’s choice as Secretary of Energy, is a firm believer that the federal government should increase taxes on gas in order to push the price-per-gallon up to European levels. That’s what he told The Wall Street Journal in September. It’s for our own good, see, because forcing the price of gas into the stratosphere will make us stop driving our evil automobiles and instead use mass transit. Or bicycles. Or walk.

      Read more at the Washington Examiner: http://washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/2008/12/are-you-ready-8-gallon-gasoline#ixzz1G9uCwqm5
      • 4 Years Ago
      Cost to go 30 miles

      Gas car @ 30mpg = ~$4
      Electric car = $0-$2 ( more like $1.25 if you live in a state with some renewable energy )
      Small motorcycle/scooter @ 60mpg, 30 miles = ~$2
      Electric bike at 20-27mph = $0.07-$0.10

      A gas car is just expensive to operate, and that situation is not going to get any better.

      Get ahead of the curve and find an alternative.
        • 8 Months Ago
        A flat commute would make justifying an eBike difficult. A better investment would be a bike with skinny tires. But the speed benefit is surely a big deal, if your time is money. On flat land, of course, you are going to be using less calories than norm. Just like how a car gets bad city mileage and good highway mileage..

        Pre-assembled eBikes suck in my opinion, usually costing $2000+ and having low range and speed. I built my own for a bit under $1100, out of parts that are readily available. If you know how to solder, you can do it with minimal electronics knowledge. It does 27mph and can go for 40 miles.

        Carcus, look at the calorie calculators online and see how much calories you use. Compare that to the cost of a meal consisting of that many calories, and you will see the true cost. It is always higher. The cheapest i can find 1250 calories is by consuming Canola oil, lol.. for 43 cents. If you used half those calories, you'd be at 21.5 cents.. still more expensive than eBiking.. and in reality i don't think Canola oil is a good meal :)

        As for the cost of owning a car, you probably own one already otherwise you probably wouldn't be reading this blog :). Maintenance and insurance costs explode the cost of driving for sure.. but that's for another chart!
        • 8 Months Ago
        It's as if Two Wheeled Menace is intentionally ignoring that people who drive cars and ride electric bikes need to eat as well.

        Do I, a regular bicyclist, eat more calories than an average American? I doubt it.

        "That would be 1250 calories burned.. certainly a meal and then some. That would cost you at least $5 in food, making bicycling the most expensive way to get around."

        To which I reply - pull your head out of your arse.
        • 8 Months Ago
        Love my bicycle. $0.00 per mile.

        Also, I love not needing to go 30 miles for anything. Cities rock.
        • 8 Months Ago
        Carcus, a lighter person will expend less energy riding than a fat person, sure.
        My calculations were based on a 200lb 30 year old... sort of the average American, statistically.

        Maybe you would expend 350 calories to do the same job.. if you were 150lb and were in peak metabolic condition? how many people fit that category?

        For me, an electric bicycle is a replacement for a car, not because i am 'too fat to pedal'. There is a 1 mile 7% grade where i live that heads into Portland. I literally have never seen anyone bicycling up it. The reason i got an electric bicycle is because i would normally drive up that hill and spend a lot of gas doing so.

        Even when i was 160lbs and toned, i would walk up a hill like that and it would take a long time. I would avoid it if i could.

        Also, if i need to get somewhere quick, before the eBike, i was always taking the car.

        The electric bicycle allows me to get excersize AND drastically reduce my energy cost / environmental impact. For the entire spring, summer, and fall, the car is parked. The car is only used for trips over my 40 mile range.

        How is it not a win/win? the other option is to drive everywhere, and right now that involves a lot of gas, or an electric car that few can afford. Think outside the box!
        • 8 Months Ago
        Please explain why i have missed the forest for the trees?

        I pretty clearly explained what it cost to go 30 miles in each form of transport.
        I think everyone else is getting it except for you.

        Let me lay it out in case you missed something.

        Various bicycling energy cost calculators say that 1 hour of riding @ 12mph = 500 calories needed per hour.

        To go 30 miles, it takes 2.5 hours, so 1250 calories are needed.

        If you take the calories needed to sustain life for 2.5 hours.. at 2000 calories a day / 24, you got about 83 calories used per hour to do nothing. Oh hell, let's be nice and say 100 since sleeping calories and waking calories are going to be different.

        I don't know if these calculators are including that energy overhead, but that would mean my 1250 number goes down to 1000 calories.

        That is still a large meal and that is still in the realm of $5 to feed a person.
        I figure that is sort of an average food cost.

        And to calculate your energy cost on a bike, you take my 'per 30 miles' and divide that $5 number by whatever fraction of 30 miles you are travelling.

        Same with the car, scooter and eBike..

        Get it?

        ^-- i threw it up on the web real quick here.
        • 8 Months Ago
        LOL, thanks.
        • 8 Months Ago
        I see how a 10 minute commute would be difficult to figure into this. But it still needs consideration.

        The mechanical work you put into pedaling to work does not happen without any energy input. If you weren't cycling, you would probably eat a bit less, or those calories would be stored as fat, to be released later.

        It is splitting hairs in your instance, but all energy has a cost somewhere.

        For your situation, a pedal bike is ideal and i agree that it is the most cost effective. If all you do is pedal to work and home and go nowhere else.. an electric bike's batteries would probably exceed their calendar life before you put enough cycles on them to spend them.

        I would say your situation is pretty atypical, which is why i went with the 30 mile number. Most people have a commute of 5-20 miles. And people that feel 'pain at the pump' are usually driving a lot of miles. 30 miles is what some cars can get on a gallon of gas.. so the idea is to sort of provide a 'per gallon' energy cost..

        I feel the same as you though, my travel cost on the eBike is so inconsequential that it's almost not even worth considering. Even figuring in the cost of replacing my battery at 18,000 miles ( 15ah @ 600 cycles ), i still come in at $0.50 cents per 30 miles, or $0.60 per 30 miles total as energy is cheaper than average here in Portland as we have cheap hydro power in abundance.

        High five for 2 wheeled power?
        • 8 Months Ago
        Actually, not true. You burn a good amount of calories biking any distance.
        Food is quite expensive compared to fuel.

        I dunno about you, but if i rode 30 miles, i would probably eat half a meal ( 300-500 calories ) to replenish my energy.
        Depending on how healthy you want to eat, that meal could cost $2-$20..

        I would put that cost in the league of driving a small scooter or electric car, per cost.
        Or more expensive than a gas car if you eat organic ;)
        • 8 Months Ago
        I've been looking into the bicycling option lately, ... mainly because there's a nice paved bike path and light rail to be finished this spring near me.

        I've heard the calories for biking argument before and don't think it holds a lot of water.

        Especially when you consider how fat americans are and how many calories we over eat. A lot of those extra calories get turned into fat or end up in the shltter. If we were all healthier bikers you probably wouldn't need any extra calories on average. You'd just need to eat a little healthier calories and wouldn't waste as much.

        I'm strongly considering putting off a new car purchase in favor of the bicycle path instead. I've already got about 100 miles of trial runs under my belt (along with the 15 pound gut that needs to go away).
        • 8 Months Ago
        Resting metabolism will be lower as well.
        Dying of old age vs. heart disease is also a benefit.
        Becoming more attractive to potential partner, also a benefit, you can't put a price tag on that.

        • 8 Months Ago
        "My calculations were based on a 200lb 30 year old... sort of the average American, statistically."

        Well, that's exactly why your calculations are wrong. You also seem to think I'm taking an hour to ride 20 miles. You got wrong assumptions all over your argument - how could your conclusion possibly be correct?

        I don't weigh 200lbs, and I don't take an hour to ride to work, so I don't require the sort of energy your hypothetical situation implies. I certainly am not "famished" after my commute - as I mentioned I almost definitely have a lower caloric intake than the average person.

        Bikes rock because they don't pollute. Cities rock because they reduce commuting time.
        • 8 Months Ago
        Hi 2WM
        If you are an American you should offset the costs of the 'fuel' to exercise against savings in health care costs, or alternatively offset them against gym fees! ;-)
        • 8 Months Ago
        It's almost as if letstakeawalk is twisting my argument around. ;)

        I am talking about calories in addition to what you would normally consume.
        And you can operate an electric bike without pedaling, most people do.
        And my electric bike, which was calculated in here.. does about 75% of the work that i do. So for my use, i consume about 25% less calories.

        This is measured by how many amps i use when i start pedaling vs how many amps i use when i am just using the throttle.

        So take my electric bike number and tack $1.25 on to the cost of transport. It is then on par with an electric car.

        Anyway, i updated this cost calculation with a few more numbers and explanation of how i came to them..

        Carcus: yes, some of those extra calories can be burned. How many extra calories do you eat.. 200, 500?

        I don't know about you guys but when i pedal bike for 20+ miles, i come back freaking starved and usually consume a huge meal evening, and make up some of those burned calories in the morning because i am still hungry.

        Also when i had no car and pedaled ~36 miles a day.. and was in great shape ( 170lbs and bicyclist-muscular ), i ate like a freaking beast.
        • 8 Months Ago
        >Well, that's exactly why your calculations are wrong. You also seem to think I'm taking an hour to ride 20 miles. You got wrong assumptions all over your argument - how could your conclusion possibly be correct?

        That's a very generous estimate, LTAW. 12mph requires less energy to maintain the speed. Look at the bicycle calorie calculators and you will realize that faster speed = more energy needed

        15mph requires 727 calories per hour, that's 500 calories more. That's 1817.5 calories, for 5mph more.

        If you cut that calorie count in half, you still have ~900 calories, and that is what a meal cost for most people. Do you eat on under $10 a day?

        As for metabolic needs.. go ask a professional athelete or a bodybuilder how much calories they need. I remember reading that some professional swimmers eat 8000 calories a day while training for the olympics. Freaking nuts.

        >I certainly am not "famished" after my commute - as I mentioned I almost definitely have a lower caloric intake than the average person.

        Do you ride 30 miles a day to work? because my numbers are going off 30 miles. Use division and find out your calorie needs.

        > Bikes rock because they don't pollute. Cities rock because they reduce commuting time.

        They don't pollute, however modern methods of producing food require a lot of mechanical energy fueled by electricity and gasoline, in both production and transport.
        And the human body is about 20-30% efficient in converting that food into mechanical energy ( rotating the cranks. )

        Just like an electric car doesn't pollute, but the coal plant making that electrical energy does.

        There is no free lunch with energy, my friend.
        Unless of course, you are an organic farmer and have free labor :)
        • 8 Months Ago
        Think of it this way.

        The cost of the food I eat doesn't change based on whether I ride my bike to work or if someone gives me a ride. I'm going to eat no matter what.

        I have to spend that money, just like the ebike rider or the auto driver - we all have to eat, so the cost of our daily food isn't a truly a factor in the cost of transportation.

        However, you have ignored the external cost of pollution created by the operation of an ebike. Granted, it might be very small, but it is still larger that that of a bike that uses no electricity at all. Then there's the external cost of the production chain used to create the ebike - specifically the electric components. Likewise, there's the increased amortized cost of the ebike, based on a higher initial purchase price averaged over the ebike's lifetime.

        I apologize for a contradictory set of statements I made where I said your calculations were incorrect and then said I wasn't saying they were wrong... I should clarify.

        The conclusion you reached concerning my energy use was incorrect. You made a calculation for a specific case which was not reflective of my reality. Your math was correct, and would give accurate results for the scenario you detail. However, since you are not aware of and did not have the correct real data, it would be impossible for you to accurately cost out the expense incurred by myself on my daily commute.

        Basically, 6 oz. of soda covers my calorie deficit incurred by biking to work. However, my work provides free drinks, so it costs me nothing to replace those calories.

        My commute costs me $0.00.
        • 8 Months Ago
        I don't know how many calories I consume,. .. other than too many. I haven't counted lately.

        But I'll wager this...

        I'll bet a lean (i.e. 8% body fat) in shape person who bicycles a 20 mile rt to work at a reasonable pace (i.e. less than 15 mph) won't consume any more calories in a day than a 40 lb overweight person who drives a car to work instead.

        Fat people consume a LOT of calories... and there's a fair amount of calories that the fat (overeating) person won't even abosorb, whereas the lean healthy one will abosorb more of what he takes in. Plus, the fat man needs extra calories just to haul all the fat around (try carrying a 40 lb bag of dog food around with you all day).

        Think 40 lbs sounds like too much?? Have you walked around in wal-mart lately?

        Which brings up another question... If you're so fat you have to ride an electric scooter cuz your knees and ankles hurt too much ... are you conserving energy?
        • 8 Months Ago

        Of course I was not implying that 'you' needed an electric bike because you're fat. Anyone can plainly see from your avatar that you are lean and quite muscular.

        • 8 Months Ago
        "Please explain why i have missed the forest for the trees?
        I pretty clearly explained what it cost to go 30 miles in each form of transport."

        Exactly. You're so caught up in proving your specific hypothetical scenario that you ignored my actual situation.

        It would be like if someone argued against a BEV, based on a road trip of 1000 miles. Sure the BEV would be less time efficient (which is certainly a cost consideration) than an ICE, but that's not how a typical BEV will be used.

        Most people don't ride a bike 30 miles to get to work - I certainly don't. It takes me a leisurely 10 minutes to go several blocks; that benefit of being in the city (which I mentioned and you also ignored).

        I'm not saying your cost calculations are wrong - congrats on such an anorak display - but they certainly aren't applicable to my case.

        My bike is effectively free transportation. I'm sorry you feel the need to argue that it isn't.

        • 8 Months Ago
        Woah, my calorie estimations are extremely conservative according to various calorie calculators on the web.


        That is about 500 calories per hour, going 12mph.
        To go 30 miles, you would need to bicycle for 2.5 hours.

        That would be 1250 calories burned.. certainly a meal and then some. That would cost you at least $5 in food, making bicycling the most expensive way to get around.

        On another note, i have a bicycle computer that often reports that a 10 mile trip at the speeds i'm going as burning calories in the 1000-2000 zone. Probably because i'm going 23mph average.
        • 8 Months Ago
        An electric bike IS a win/win. No argument from me on that.

        AFAIK the electric bike is THE most efficient means of transportation. I've been eye-balling a Kalkhoff pro connect, myself. But I really can't justify the $ for it as my commute is flat and not that long (either 7 mi. or 13 mi RT). But I still might do it for the speed and convenience, haven't decided yet. Just figured I'd try it "old school" until I got back in shape, then maybe I'll reconsider the Kalkhoff.

        My point was that I don't buy that "bicycling is an expensive way to get around".

        That argument is shaky, just on the calories side. When you add in the other costs of an electric car, hybrid car, or almost any other form of transportation (other than (maybe) the electric bike) the "bicycling is more expensive " argument doesn't hold.

        Compatatively, bicycling is cheap. Veeeery cheap. -- 10 billion Chinese can't be wrong!
        • 8 Months Ago
        @ all of the above comments: Geez, we're a bunch of nerds. :-)
        • 8 Months Ago
        I found a calorie calculator, and plugged my info into it. Weight, bike speed, length of ride.

        My commute burns a whopping 60 calories. And that's if I'm really working it.

        Imagine if I were as extravagant as to actually *walk* to work! I'd burn an extra 26 calories, for a total of 86... how on Earth would I ever manage to afford all the food I'd need?

        You've missed the forest for the trees, twowheeledmenace, in an obscene pursuit of efficiency.
      • 4 Years Ago
        • 8 Months Ago
        I agree that we need to get used to paying more for energy. Both gasoline and electricity from coal and natural gas are way too cheap based on the actual costs.

        • 8 Months Ago
        Funny...also a bit hysterical as Americans have higher incomes yet only pay half what Europeans pay for their gasoline. Let me tell you: even $8/gallon gas will not get people out of their cars. People just get used to it, accept it and pay up. It doesn't do anything for SUV popularity though....
      • 4 Years Ago
      as oil is running out prices will of course go up. but like we saw in 2008, the economy can snap under the pressure of high prices so that's basically our two options in the coming years, a dance between high oil prices and financial crashes. it'll be great. what could possibly go wrong.
      I don't think that 4.5$ will be a real tipping point though. USA is far too dense for subtleties like that (rest of the world too for that matter). they'll just think it's that much more of a status symbol to drive an 'SUV' or pickup. the global financial crash was too subtle too. much too subtle. I can't quite see how it will manifest specifically yet but I think it wont really change until something really catastrophic manifests as a result of the terminal oil shortage. maybe it will happen with a serious speech from some political leaders (in the case of USA Obama or maybe someone who replaced him if we have 2 years more before the shit really hits the fan). if chubama finally gets it and says duuuuuuuh maybe we should actually make some electric cars? ya think!
      actually start kicking some detroit ass or start federal production programs.
      I've said it before, we need lean EVs. not moronic 1800kg EVs. so they need less battery so they are commercially viable. simple..

      4.5$ just wont cut it. not even close. and we will be spectacularly out of time.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Two words: oil sands

      Pop quiz: which country is our largest single supplier of petroleum? Hint: it's not Saudia Arabia
        • 8 Months Ago
        Total production of Canadian tar sands is about 1 million barrels/day.
        US consumption is about 20 mbd, and world consumption 88 mbd.
        China is increasing it's consumption by around 1 mbd every year, and current oil fields deplete by 4-8%pa so new ones must be developed just to stay still.
        There is no way it can ramp fast enough to prevent problems in the next 15 years, although it can help.
        • 8 Months Ago
        Agree that it's not a complete solution. But with oil at $104 per barrel, oil sands look pretty attractive. So we get 5% of our oil today from oil sands? I thought it was higher than that, but I can't remember where I read that now, so I'll go with you on that. Ramping up is a matter of economics and will, not technology.

        Personally I'd rather we got 95% of our oil from our buds up north and opened up the North Dakota and Utah fields for more commercial development in the USA.

        But that would probably be a difficult fight against the environmental lobby.
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