Experts say the fuel has a future, but that it’s changing slowly
By NACS Online
While yesteryear’s high oil prices drove industry efficiencies, the elevated cost of oil also brought about an oversupply and lower prices, CNBCreports. “That era of high-price oil that we had drove innovations all over the place especially in terms of shale but it also enabled oil operators to make much bigger risks,” said John Kilduff, founding partner of Again Capital.
The volatility of oil prices—which are creeping up again because of Middle East tensions—often highlights the benefits of less expensive, alternative energy. While renewables investments will continue to expand, the end of the oil era is not yet here. “I think oil’s got another four or five decades before we see anything,” said John Eichberger, executive director of the Fuels Institute. “Change is coming, but it’s going to take time.”
The International Energy Agency (IEA) predicts that demand for oil will experience growth until 2040 because of emerging markets, such as India. But the IEA also said China is pushing for clean power, estimating that by 2040, one out of every four vehicles on Chinese roads will be electric.
“Electric vehicles (EVs) will compete and probably beat internal combustion on a cost basis pretty soon, which will give consumers a choice,” Eichberger said. However, he pointed out that the infrastructure to support EVs will take years to build.