Matthew Yglesias: Natural Resource Scarcity Is a Real Thing

Related to my previous post.

fredgraph-1
Something I’ve noticed lately is a huge surge in commentary, generally from conservatives, lauding the boom in “unconventional” oil finds as completely debunking the fashionable “peak oil” concerns of the mid-aughts.
Long story short, we’re in nothing like the peak oil nightmare that a naive forward projection of the 2003-08 hockey stick would have led you to expect. But we’ve hardly conquered oil scarcity either. New discoveries are having trouble keeping pace with rising car ownership in Asia and declining production from many established oil sources. Meanwhile, unconventional oil is coming onto the market in part because oil is scarce and expensive, which makes it profitable to extract hard-to-extract oil. That’s better for the economy than if we didn’t find any, but it also means we haven’t returned to the 1990s oil bounty and most likely never will.
Edit: kinda fixed blockquotes
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