Oil & Gas Editorial: The Tyranny of the Few in a world of dwinling opportunity
"And remember, where you have a concentration of power in a few hands, all too frequently men with the mentality of gangsters get control. History has proven that." John Emerich Edward Dalberg-Acton aka Lord Acton (1834 - 1902)
Oil prices have reached their highest value so far in 2015 as escalating violence in war-torn Libya and rumblings from OPEC members have pointed to lessened supply.
Libya has the world's ninth largest proven oil reserves, yet since the ouster of Muammar Ghadaffi, oil production in the North African state has fallen by 78 per cent- plummeting from an average of 1.6 million barrels per day (bpd) in 2011 to barely 350,000 bpd in January 2015.
Coupled with the demise of Libyan oil, it has emerged that 2014 saw the lowest number of oil and gas discoveries in a calendar year since 1995. Less than 16 billion barrels of oil equivalent were found last year worldwide, representing the fourth consecutive year of declines in new reserve volumes - the worst streak for 65 years.
It is unlikely to be a coincidence that the man in charge of Royal Dutch Shell, Ben van Beurden, reminded the Great and Good at the recent International Petroleum Week annual dinner, that development of stranded assets is becoming ever more important as we strive for "energy access for all".
We are finding the least amount of oil since the 1950s and unstable nations with an abundance of hydrocarbons cannot be counted on to service a growing global populous. Increasingly, we will be looking to safe and reliable producers to furnish us with the petrochemical clout that we need to make our energy future a secure prospect.
Unfortunately, this will concentrate the needs of the many in the hands of progressively fewer multitude. And even those of a most incorruptible disposition might find the whimsy and bestowal of power turning to thoughts of brinksmanship and racketeering….
Will global energy future ever be secure? Have your say here
Tim Haðdar is the Editor In Chief at Oil & Gas IQ. Reach Him At Twitter Or OGIQ
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