Roger that

Update: Just for clarity’s sake, I do not in any way think that Roger stole my idea or plagiarized my report. I honestly don’t, and I’ll put a ‘Willis Eschenbach’ style of memoir post explaining why. Roger emailed me assuring me that was the case and I believe him.

Over at the Breakthrough Institute, Roger Pielke has published an interesting article that basically replicates the work I’ve done over at my companion blog 3,000 Quads.

In arriving at his projected totals for future energy consumption, he uses the exact same methodology as I did in my report–picking a country that has ‘x’ level of energy consumption and calculating the result if the developing world reaches that level of prosperity. It’s sobering stuff.

I sent Roger the report a year ago in November of 2011 and a couple of weeks back he mentioned that he was working on something similar. He came up with similar answers, although he doesn’t use a timeline for achievement the way I did–I predicted 947 quads by 2030, roughly 2000 quads by 2050 and 3000 quads by 2075. (Not that I’m claiming the idea is my intellectual property–Dan Nocera has been writing in a similar vein for several years as well. But a hat tip would have been nice.)

Here’s his chart:


And here’s one of mine:table-10-various-projection-totals-china-india-indonesia-and-brazilGood to know great minds think alike.

5 responses to “Roger that

  1. While these are interesting theoretical models, actual development will depend on resources and technology. The biggest stumbling block to continued growth I see right now is gasoline. Even the optimistic projections show a production ‘plateau’ for decades to come. Which would mean that for China, India and other developing countries to use vastly more gasoline the rest of the world would suddenly need to use vastly less. Not going to happen unless electric vehicles or some other replacement technology takes off. Or maybe development goes down a different route this time… maybe China will have a huge telecommuting surge, super efficient mass transit, or mega-cities rather than suburbs. Time will tell, but these developing nations are definitely going to need to follow some different routes than the already developed world did.

  2. I doubt that developing countries facing 100$+ price of oil per barrel minimum will follow the same consumption patterns that western countries did (with oil price at 10 $/barrel from 1986 to 2000 and cheaper than that prior to 1973).

    There is large variation among developed countries, too. Compared to the US, the French use 50% less oil per capita.

  3. Jarmo, correct for inflation and you see that oil isn’t that much more expensive now than a long time ago. (I think–I’d better check that…)

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