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Oil crisis


In the 1970's many groups predicted that world oil supplies would be scarce by the year 2000.

Why has this not happened?

Economic sustainability plays a part in the development and use of resources. New and more efficient techniques are constantly developed. Alternative resources may be found when it is economically sustainable.


Oil barrel

Oil and gas reserves are measured in the equivalent number of barrels of oil. 1 barrel contains 160 litres of oil.

Oil and gas reserves

Oil and gas can only be extracted from the ground if it is economically sustainable. This depends on the price that the oil and gas can be sold at.

As the price goes up, it is economical to exploit new reserves of oil and gas.

Oil and gas reserves

Data: Bath University.

Prices of oil have risen from $15 in the year 2000, to $50 in 2005. At these prices, oil and gas will not run out in the near future.

As the resources become more expensive, it becomes more economically sustainable to develop and exploit new alternatives.