The debate seems to be focusing now around either this year or 2010 as the point of a possible Peak.
ExxonMobil apparently with 2010: Oil: Caveat Empty
Experts: Petroleum May Be Nearing a Peak
Truer words were never heard:
"The reality is, this thing is extremely complicated," Hirsch said. "My honest view is that anybody who tells you that they have a clear picture probably doesn't understand the problem."
Deffeyes thinks the peak will be in late 2005 or early 2006. Houston investment banker Matthew Simmons puts it at 2007 to 2009. California Institute of Technology physicist David Goodstein, whose book "The End of Oil" was published last year, predicts it will arrive before 2010.
What Happens When the Oil Runs Out?
So perhaps we should brace ourselves for what Professor Deffeyes calls a "hard landing."
"A soft landing is that we get enough new nuclear electric generating capacity, wind energy, high efficiency automobiles on the road by this coming Thanksgiving, or it's a hard landing," he says. "There, we get probably a worldwide recession that's worse than 1930."
That's because of higher prices for everything from fuel to food, as new problems emerge over how much oil is left and who gets to have it.