Quote of the past, on the likelihood we will soon run out of fossil fuel

“Already the output of gas has begun to wane.”

— U.S. Presidential Commission, opining in 1922 that we would soon run out of natural gas.

Later President Jimmy Carter announced on television in 1977 that “we could use up all the proven reserves of oil in the entire world by the end of the next decade.”  That was nearly four decades ago and the price of oil has tanked due to an abundant supply.  Making categorical statements about the likelihood of running out of fossil fuels has been making fools out of politicians and pundits for decades.  In will be centuries before the earth runs out of fossils fuels, and it will never run out of fools.

Further reading this subject: Fossils Fuels Will Save the World, by Matt Ridley in the Wall Street Journal, March 13, 2015. Here is a sample:

That fossil fuels are finite is a red herring. The Atlantic Ocean is finite, but that does not mean that you risk bumping into France if you row out of a harbor in Maine. The buffalo of the American West were infinite, in the sense that they could breed, yet they came close to extinction. It is an ironic truth that no nonrenewable resource has ever run dry, while renewable resources—whales, cod, forests, passenger pigeons—have frequently done so.

Read the whole thing, Ridley accurately and fairly states the argument of the environmentalist Left and thoroughly delates it with facts, reason and logic.  Ridley is, as always, a fountain of candor, intelligence and good faith, these being the essential ingredients of an honest debate.

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