Wikileaks: Saudi Arabia Running Out of OilS

More great news from the wonderful world of Wikileaks: Saudi Arabia is running out of oil! According to a former top Saudi oil executive, as recorded in State Department cables between 2007 and 2009, "Peak Oil" — the pinch point at which global petroleum production reaches its maximum capacity — is a very real problem that we're rapidly approaching.

This December 2007 cable contrasted the bleak outlook of Sadad al-Husseini, a former head of exploration at the Saudis' oil monopoly Aramco, with the official Aramco projections:

"In a presentation, Abdallah al-Saif, current Aramco senior vice-president for exploration, reported that Aramco has 716bn barrels of total reserves, of which 51% are recoverable, and that in 20 years Aramco will have 900bn barrels of reserves.

"Al-Husseini disagrees with this analysis, believing Aramco's reserves are overstated by as much as 300bn barrels. In his view once 50% of original proven reserves has been reached…a steady output in decline will ensue and no amount of effort will be able to stop it. He believes that what will result is a plateau in total output that will last approximately 15 years followed by decreasing output."

The U.S. consul added in its cable: "While al-Husseini fundamentally contradicts the Aramco company line, he is no doomsday theorist. His pedigree, experience and outlook demand that his predictions be thoughtfully considered."

Or we can spend more time arguing about whether the development of alternative energy is an evil scam concocted by Al Gore, which would be much easier.

[Image via AP]