Lynch,M.C.(2003): The new pessimism about petroleum resources: Debunking the Hubbert model (and Hubbert modelers). Minerals & Energy, 18(1), 21-32.


 A group of petroleum analysts using the so-called Hubbert method have been arguing that resource scarcity will soon have a severe impact on the global economy. Although past efforts have not yielded valid results, the new researchers claim that using a proprietary database and field production data, they are able to generate creaming curves which show the ultimate recovery in any given area and for the globe as a whole. However, careful examination of the body of work shows that the authors are inconsistent in their arguments, rely on assumptions in key areas and make numerous unsupported assertions. Most of their key findings appear to be no more than a misunderstanding of statistical analysis. Not only can some of their methods be demonstrated to be ineffective, and their conclusions repeatedly failed, but the authors publish data and cases selectively, omitting those which contradict their theories, implying that the work is unreliable.

Keywords: Hubbert curve; petroleum supply; resource pessimism; junk science; Malthusian bias』

The Hubbert curve
Revival of the Hubbert method
The new research
Opaque work, unproven assertions
Technical data
Unsubstantiated results
Misinterpretation of causality
Production profile to estimate field size
Effect of these errors on the research results