Can technological breakthroughs avoid oil shortages? Yes – oil shortages are a real possibility in the next five years because companies are not investing in exploration the way they used to…and this is not just me saying this but also the International Energy Agency. The only hope is that there are continued breakthroughs in energy extraction beyond fracking and improved vehicle economy. Will this happen? Who knows – but it is a real possibility. I know a few months ago none of us would have predicted oil being $58 per barrel and the huge inventories on their way to being eliminated.
While Keystone pipeline is in the news, something to remember is pipelines are very safe. A Manhattan Institute report looked at the U.S. Department of Transportation’s annual accident data between 2007-2016 per billion ton-miles: oil pipelines charted the lowest rate at 0.66; railways came in at 2.20; and roads at 7.11.