"A Geological Perspective on Global Warming, Global and U.S. Energy Futures, and Global Free Markets ... What We Can Do" with Peter R. Rose Ph.D.

  • 20 Apr 2010
  • 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM
  • Marie Callendar's Restaurant 9503 Research Blvd. Austin, TX 78759

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Abstract
The relative contribution of Man's activities, as opposed to Nature's activities, to the observed recent rises in Earth temperatures, is unresolved. In addition to the oft-noted inability of climate modeling to reproduce the documented recent past, a major shortcoming of contemporary climate studies is that they rest upon very short time spans, whereas climate change considered from a geological perspective encourages much less anxiety about the climate future of the world. If it turns out that most observed global warming is the result of natural causes, as seems increasingly likely, proposed voluntary economic initiatives by Western nations to limit CO2 emissions will constitute a serious and unnecessary economic wound, self-inflicted at the worst possible time. Sunspot cycles suggest that we are about to enter -- indeed may have already begun -- an extended period of global cooling. Recent unsavory revelations ("Climate Gate") have cast doubt on the dependability of the science underpinning Anthropogenic Global Warming.

U. S. prosperity correlates closely with energy use. We must assure a reliable supply of relatively cheap energy if the Nation is to maintain an acceptable standard of living and continue as a world power. Our recent energy-supply crisis had three main components: 1] the global convergence of crude-oil demand upon crude-oil supply [especially as it impacted motor fuels]; 2] the approaching plateau in global crude-oil production, which allows the U. S. a window of perhaps 5 to 15 years in which to implement major changes in National energy production and use; and 3] the mortgaging of U. S. assets for overseas crude oil. A fourth component is increasing population in emerging economies. Any solution will require the development and deployment of all alternative energy sources that are, or will be, economic, especially nuclear generation of electricity. In any case, the U. S. will be dependent on fossil fuels [crude oil, natural gas, and coal] as the "bridge" energy sources for at least 50 years. Recent good news here
is the rapid increase in U. S. natural gas supplies from technological innovations in exploitation of widespread "shale gas" deposits.

The shift to alternate energy sources and improved efficiencies during this transition will require massive and sustained capital investments. Thus the most critical requirements for successfully negotiating this transition are: A] a robust, trustworthy, free-market investment sector and B] an informed, rational National Energy Policy. Both requirements have been seriously deficient for the past 10 to 20 years. The recent meltdown in the U.S. financial sector, and consequential low energy prices, represent a substantial threat to our successful energy transition. Conservation and
increased energy efficiency provide the quickest, most effective ways to reduce U. S. energy use. The problem is how to make energy frugality a lasting value. Moreover, the adoption of proactive environmental programs depends upon a healthy economy.


The good news is that we don't have to believe in anthropogenic global warming to support many energy conservation measures that are clearly necessary for a healthy national energy future. Most of these are also consistent with measures advocated by the Green Movement, and most could be adopted quickly. And if we can avoid self-penalizing our economic enterprises through misguided carbon-based restrictions, and irrational environmental alarms, that many more dollars can be freed-up to address the real crisis -- long-term U. S. energy supply. Further good news is that a purposeful transition to alternate energy sources can provide fruitful new investment opportunities that contribute to a revitalized and trustworthy investment climate.


Biography - Peter R. Rose Ph.D.

Peter R. Rose (BS, MA, PhD, Geology, University of Texas at Austin) is a certified petroleum geologist who was Staff Geologist with Shell Oil Company; Chief, Oil and Gas Branch of the U.S. Geological Survey; and Chief Geologist and Director of Frontier Exploration for Energy Reserves Group, Inc. (now BHP Petroleum (Americas), Inc.). In 1980, he established his own independent oil and gas consulting firm, Telegraph Exploration, Inc. His clients include most major U.S. companies and prominent independents as well as many international firms and state oil companies. Dr. Rose has explored for oil and gas in most North American geological provinces and has published and lectured widely on U.S. resource assessment, basin analysis, play development, prospect evaluation, and risk and uncertainty in exploration. He has taught extensively at the professional level and was a 1985/1986 AAPG Distinguished Lecturer.

Since 1989 he has been deeply involved in design and implementation of comprehensive exploration risk analysis systems for executive management of many major and independent oil companies, operating in both the Domestic and International theaters. His courses emphasize the link between geoscience and profitability in the business of petroleum exploration and development. He is a Senior Associate in the consulting firm, Rose & Associates, LLP (R&A), which he founded in 1998. The firm is a recognized international leader in risk analysis of petroleum exploration and development ventures.

Dr. Rose was the 1996/1997 President of the American Association of Petroleum Geologist's Division of Professional Affairs. He received the coveted Parker Memorial Medal from the American Institute of Professional Geologists in 1998 and was awarded Honorary Membership in AAPG in 2002. He was AAPG's 89th President (2005-06), and represented the Association as a member of the National Petroleum Council in 2006-2007. He continues to be active in professional affairs, and was deeply involved in recent successful efforts to encourage the U. S. Securities and Exchange Commission to modernize its rules governing estimation and disclosure of oil and gas reserves.


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