Tsoskounoglou,M., Ayerides,G. and Tritopoulou,E.(2008): The end of cheap oil: Current status and prospects. Energy Policy, 36, 3797-3806.


 This paper, analyses the factors impacting the price of crude oil in order to examine the likely evolution of the oil market and attempts to answer the question, whether cheap oil is already a thing of the past. Based on data made publicly available mostly by the major oil companies, it examines the effects of demand and supply, the evolution of world oil reserves, the trends in new discoveries of new oilfields, the evolution of world Gross Domestic Product (GDP), and the depletion of oil resources. The analysis concludes that the world peak in conventional oil production - the point beyond which oil production will irreversibly start declining - is approaching and will be reached, even according to the most optimistic scenarios, before 2040 and quite possibly much sooner. If the appropriate solutions for substituting crude oil and for conserving the use of energy are not implemented in time, then the current upward trend in oil prices is bound to continue.

Keywords: Peak oil; Depletion; Discoveries』

1. Introduction
2. The price of oil
3. Factors influencing price
 3.1. Demand
 3.2. New discoveries
 3.3. Oil reserves
 3.4. Production
4. Production forecasts
 4.1. The peak oil theory and Hubbert's curve
 4.2. Forecasting the peak in global oil production capacity
5. The depleting global oil production base
6. Alternative fuels and new technologies
7. Conclusions