Book Review Review: The Oil Depletion Protocol

As this is AutoBlogGreen, being green is our reason for both writing and reading this blog. This book, published in 2006 and reviewed in Yes! Magazine by Guy Dauncey, talks about the current – not future – challenge we face: How do we adjust our energy use without creating so much greenhouse gas that we tip the atmosphere into an uncomfortable, non sustainable mode. It takes as a given that we will soon hit Peak Oil sometime between now and 2030. How do we respond as individuals and as nations? After all, I don't want to conserve petroleum only to have another a-hole elsewhere in the world burn it instead.
Heinberg investigates ways of getting nations to adjust their relative consumption to the total current annual oil production. Productions drops 3%, consumption for each nation drops the same amount each year. Dauncey, however, notes that Heinberg's protocol distributes oil consumption but it does not address global warming specifically. He only addresses the contribution, for instance, of petroleum and omits coal and gas contribution to global warming. It is total world production of CO2, of course, that will control global warming and the size of its impact on our lives.

Here is an interesting factoid: 1 barrel of oil (42 gallons) when burned produces about 170 pounds (77 kg) of CO2. If those particular barrels are all gasoline and you use 20 of them a year (840 gallons), your car will create nearly 3400 pounds of CO2. Which leads me to ask every day: "Is this (auto) trip really necessary?"

[Source: YES! Magazine]

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