Home Page - Gulf in the Media
HomePoliticsEconomy                               Set Gulfinthemedia.com as home page
Opinions
"Postings of opinions published in the Gulf and international newspapers
 Print  Send This Page
Save Listen to this Article
The day Burgan fields stop pumping oil!   

Kuwait Times - 10 May, 2012
Author: Fouad Al-Obaid

Conventional wisdom has it that all finite resources come with an expiry date. It needs to be on the horizon one day. This notion is particularly disturbing when it comes to a resource we have grown fond of, and has allowed modern development. Oil, ever since mid-last century, has given rise to an economic and construction boom seldom seen in history. Kuwait, just like many of its sister Gulf states, has enormously benefited from the discovery, extraction, production and export of what many have dubbed ‘black gold.’ Relentlessly, day in and out, on a 24-hour basis, oil has not stopped flowing for the past 60 years – during the Iraq invasion period, billions of barrels of potential oil exports were burnt off.

The lifestyle, in terms of modern comfort, is being maintained in this part of the world due to oil income, which leads me to question how would we have developed should oil not have been discovered beneath our desert? In conceptualizing such a scenario, I could not have envisioned a country at all, amid a 20th and now 21st century revolution, without even the most basic commodity – water – available in semi-abundance. Here, temperatures rose to above 50 degree Celsius, there were no real cultivable lands, no historical significance to a technologically advanced globalized world, modern Afghanistan would compare better.

The only reason Kuwait, Dubai, and Doha to name a few cities in our region have developed and left to history their old mud-houses is due to this precious commodity which is soon nearing an end. Depending on different analysis this day could be nearer for some, and perhaps a bit later for others. But the ultimate question that we ought to be considering is that when it does – and it will, what will we do? How will we derive clean water? With what will we produce electricity and in what quantities? How will we commute? What industries will we create to diversify the economy? Will we master knowledge and become a global center of knowledge?

One thing is clear, when it is announced that Burgan oilfield has pumped its last barrel, it will be a day of reckoning like no other. Perhaps, we could be faced with an apocalypse of amplitude not seen in history. If we fail to properly plan ‘beyond petroleum’ economy, we will wake up one day to a city that will shortly start to crumble amid chaos that is seldom seen. Unfortunately, the way things are, when considering the quality of the debate surrounding this important issue that remains largely ignored, I fear for the future.

I hope that we will start waking up to the reality that oil will not last forever, and that it is our collective duty to start planning for a post-oil economy and start massively investing in renewable energy sources and alternative economic activities in order to sustain our current lifestyle and maintain our global relevance.

By Fouad Al-Obaid, Staff Columnist

fouad@kuwaittimes.net
Twitter: @Fouadalobaid
 
Total 200 Results in 14 Pages
  2 
For more news, views and reports about this topic, please subscribe
to GRC website: www.grc.net
Sun Jan 22, 2017| 23-ربيع ثاني-1438هـ
Iraqi forces to complete liberation of E. Mosul soon - Al-Abadi
Syria against Saudi Arabia, Qatar taking part at Astana talks
UAE Court sentences three to jail for terror acts
Bahrain King hails Egypt's pivotal role
Iran's Zarif sees possibility to work with KSA over Syria, Yemen
Kuwait 'well positioned' to ease lower oil impact
Martyrs role model of devotion: Mohamed
GCC braces for budgetary cuts
OIC to discuss Muslim Rohingya crisis in Myanmar
Nicaragua leader supports Qatar's Unesco candidate
UAE, New Zealand to strengthen economic ties
Shoura to study fees on expat remittances
Oman major boost to bilateral relations with Canada
Iran 'hostile' to US involvement in Syria talks
Kuwait MPs slam rising expat numbers, remittances
  Op-Ed
Emissions cheating: carmakers need to make radical changes
No end in sight to migrant woes
A dove in Davos? Calling Zarif's bluffs
Saudi Arabia - the region's cornerstone of stability and security
More>>  
    Reports
NBK Report on oil markets
GCC Banking Sector Quarterly - 2Q16
More>>  
    GCC Press Agencies
Day's main stories from the GCC Press Agencies
    GRC Analysis
The Benefits of NATO-GCC Strategic Ties
The GCC and the EU's New Global Strategy
For the GCC States, a different Europe to deal with
    GRC Commentary
Climate COP 22 in Marrakech Important for the Region
Earth Day 2016: The Promised Day
An Evolving Saudi-US Relationship
    GRC Press Release
Gulf Research Center press releases to the media
    GRC Publications
Sustainable Development Goals: Challenges and Opportunities for the GCC Countries
Salalah: The Economic Development and Spatial Fragmentation of a Globalized Port City in Southern Oman
Foreign Investments in the GCC and Investments of GCC Countries Abroad
    GRC Newsletters/Bulletins

Enter your email to get the Newsletter
Go
A Note on Syrian Refugees in the Gulf: Attempting to Assess Data and Policies
      
Privacy Policy | Contact Us | Terms & Conditions | About Us |
Weather | Qibla Directions | Hijri Date Conversion Tool
Full Page :total time:0  |   59-- 59 Middle Page :0  --   | Right : 59 - 59--en--sess-enreq-en-coming