Friday, August 22

Hubbert peak theory

M.King Hubbert was an american geoscientist, that during the 50s developped a prediction model for the production of the oil and natural gas reserves. The theory posits that for any given geographical area, from an individual oil-producing region to the planet as a whole, the rate of petroleum production tends to follow a bell-shaped curve. It is one of the primary theories on peak oil.

Choosing a particular curve determines a point of maximum production based on discovery rates, production rates and cumulative production. Early in the curve (pre-peak), the production rate increases because of the discovery rate and the addition of infrastructure. Late in the curve (post-peak), production declines because of resource depletion.

In 1956, Hubbert predicted the US oil production and pointed that during the 60s or beginning of the 70s. The peak came in 1970, at the same time that the first great energy crisis.

Since then, the Hubbert theory, that also predicted the world peak in 2000, has been a greatly accepted model within the scientific community, not in the oil industry.