Wednesday, January 1, 2020

The oil paradox, why fight for something you can't sell?

Any oil price now is either too high for consumers or too low for producers. Producers are trying to get other producers to cut back, but no one is willing to sacrifice. But then, you may ask, why the ferocious oil wars and desperate drilling?

When oil was easy-to-drill, there were many years of low price. This affected the whole world economy. Due to expected future growth, debt was incurred to grab future profits in the present. In 2005, world easy-oil production peaked. Every day since then, it has cost more joules to get a joule of oil.

However, paradoxically, due to the profit system, the end of cheap oil, and increased debt-service, there are no more profits. But oil is still the blood of the economy and controlling it means economic power.

Hence, there is a desperate fight over something that cannot be sold.