Prime Minister loses the plot on peak oil and climate change
John Hemming (Birmingham, Yardley, Liberal Democrat) Link to this Hansard source
The recent high prices and volatility in the price of oil is symptomatic of geological constraints on supply—also known as peak oil and gas. Do the Government have a view as to when peak production will occur globally, and does the Prime Minister believe that it is worth doing that research?
Gordon Brown (Prime Minister; Kirkcaldy & Cowdenbeath, Labour) Link to this Hansard source
The hon. Gentleman is right to raise the question of supplies of oil for the future. That is concerning all countries. Not only do we need stability of supply, but, even as we move into nuclear and renewables, we will need a constantly rising supply of oil. That means that we must ensure that the demand for oil is met by supply, otherwise the price will go up again. We are, therefore, looking at what supply of oil there is, and we are trying in the North sea to increase the production that is available from some of the smaller marginal fields as well as from some of the fields that have previously been explored and developed but not exhausted.
Gordon Brown seemed quite pleased with himself on this relatively technical question. His answer, however, demonstrated that he did not understand the implications of the question.
Note he says: Not only do we need stability of supply, but, even as we move into nuclear and renewables, we will need a constantly rising supply of oil.
Someone needs to tell him that this is impossible. Furthermore if it were ever to happen we could never hit the CO2 targets.