We had a discussion on anouther thread about peak oil versus plateau oil. I'll leave it to the DOE to explain why they talk about plateau - which IMHO is correct Washington considers a decline of world oil production as of 2011 | Oil Man Prices did rise and oil investments increased World Crude Oil Production by Year (Thousand Barrels per Day) One reason investment may not be there is government concern for ghg. The investment get's us more unconventional oil that produces more ghg. How much more - range estimates are 5%-37%, but I would throw out the outliers on top and bottom and say 10%-25% more ghg. Your gasoline will become more expensive and carbon intense in the future. We may see another glut, in the short term if sanctions are lifted against iran. They have so much oil they can't sell right now they have filled all storage, and now are filling tankers that have no where to go. But after the decline will be another price spike. Which leads us to peak coal. People are estimating 100s of years, but I expect a plateu and decline much sooner, within 20 years. Why? If you look at how polluted china is, they need to be able to breath. Solar, Wind, natural gas, nuclear have to be cheaper than coal sometime in the near future. At that point we will be decomissioning more coal plants around the world than building new ones. Demand for coal will have to decrease. This peak has already happened in North America. The one wild card here is peoples desires to curb ghg. There is the possibility that the fuel gets cheap enough and CCS gets inexpensive enough that we do start building IGCC + CCS plants.