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Anderson to discuss petroleum reserves

American Chemical Society meeting at Panola College, 7 p.m., Monday, Feb. 11 in the Community Room.

American Chemical Society meeting at Panola College, 7 p.m., Monday, Feb. 11 in the Community Room.

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The East Texas Section of the American Chemical Society will present Dr. Ken Anderson from Southern Illinois University on Monday, Feb. 11 at 7 pm in the M.P. Baker Library Community Room at Panola College.

Modern society is deeply dependent on petroleum as a source of both energy and raw materials.  Because of this, there is currently intense global concern about “peak oil” – the point in time at which global production of petroleum will reach its maximum and after which it will inexorably decline.

Forecasts of peak oil are often based largely on methods developed by M. King Hubbert.  In 1956, Hubbert forecast that U.S. crude oil production would peak in the early 1970’s.  His prediction was widely rejected at the time, but was subsequently vindicated when U.S. oil production peaked in 1971.

Hubbert’s methods have since been extended and widely applied to forecasting production of a range of resources, on a wide range of scales (from local to global).    The validity of these forecasts depends on the methods used to develop them and on whether or not the methodology is appropriate to the particular resource and scale being investigated.

It is important, therefore, to understand both the strengths and limitations of these methods when basing decisions on forecasts developed from them.  This presentation with discuss both the history and the science behind Hubbert’s methods including both the strengths and limitations of the approach and discussing examples including petroleum and coal production.

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Anderson to discuss petroleum reserves