Exclusive: Watchdog's estimates of reserves inflated says top official(...)
The world is much closer to running out of oil than official estimates admit, according to a whistleblower at the International Energy Agency who claims it has been deliberately underplaying a looming shortage for fear of triggering panic buying.
The senior official claims the US has played an influential role in encouraging the watchdog to underplay the rate of decline from existing oil fields while overplaying the chances of finding new reserves.
A second senior IEA source, who has now left but was also unwilling to give his name, said a key rule at the organisation was that it was "imperative not to anger the Americans" but the fact was that there was not as much oil in the world as had been admitted. "We have [already] entered the 'peak oil' zone. I think that the situation is really bad," he added.(...)
But as far back as 2004 there have been people making similar warnings. Colin Campbell, a former executive with Total of France told a conference: "If the real [oil reserve] figures were to come out there would be panic on the stock markets … in the end that would suit no one."Yikes. I mean seriously, yikes. If this turns out to be substantiated... well, regarding the current economic situation, and in the immortal words of Bachman-Turner Overdrive, "B-B-B-Baby, you just ain't seen nothin' yet."
Followup, Tuesday, November 10: The Telegraph has also picked this up, but the article appears to be based entirely on The Guardian piece quoted above.
2nd followup today: The NYT has an article on the IEA's report. (note that the above was purposely released on the eve of the expected release date of this report) The article is very upbeat. This is going to be interesting to watch, regardless of the outcome. P.S. The front end of the report is here... it's very upbeat.