Oil that we take out of the ground now will be exported and the government will collect a small levy on it.  It will be churned through cars and boats and end up in the air as CO2.  

In 40 years, if even the more conservative petroleum geologist analysis are true, the oil supply capacity globally will be half of what it is today.

If there is still oil to be found in New Zealand in 40 year’s time, the people then may have very good uses for it as a material and fuel for their highly efficient economy here in New Zealand.  It might be worth substantially more to my grandchildren’s economy than it is to mine.  

Sustainability thinking requires that we at least consider the benefits of finite resources to future New Zealanders and whether those benefits might be substantially higher than the current ones are to us.   

 Long Run Thinking about Oil

 Should the New Zealand government be investing $40M now to explore and develop any remaining oil reserves in our Southern Ocean? Are the methane hydrates that rest in the cold deep ocean our saviour for future secure energy? I would say no to both. What are we doing right now with oil and gas that is so important that it is worth the future? I would be willing to reduce oil and gas supplies and reduce the risk of collapsed Antarctic and Greenland ice sheets. The hard fact is that no matter how hard we keep looking and trying to use up every last drop as quickly as possible, production is decreasing, and adapting to that reality is where our $40M and innovation and exploration efforts must go.
Home  The Journal

Account Access