Get yourself a ruler, a pencil and a piece of paper. Place the ruler at about 45 degrees and draw a line upward across the page. That’s what a chart of world oil consumption looks like over the past 30 years, give or take a few shakes off the line (Figure 1). That was easy. Now think about how to draw oil consumption over the next three decades. Plenty of pundits are scrubbing their spreadsheets and fidgeting with their rulers to show us the answer. Some forecasters are economists who work for multinational oil and gas companies and government agencies. Most of their oil outlooks extend upward. The biggest uncertainty is the angle of their rulers. The steepest slope assumes that our prevailing consumption habits and government policies are extended out a few more decades. Oil demand reaches nearly 120 MMB/d at the top of this cluster, up almost […]