Fuel for Thought
How Much Will Petrol Cost in the Future?
Oct 30 2014
Whether you drive a car, truck, boat, motorbike or even a plane, petrol is most probably the fuel that makes your engine tick. While today’s petrol prices remain relatively affordable, industry experts, natural resource researchers and everyday citizens alike are predicting that prices won’t always be this reasonable.
As a fossil fuel and therefore a non-renewable resource, petrol looks set to be depleted in the not too distant future. As such, the world can expect to see a significant jump in oil prices over the next few decades. But just how much is this inflation can we expect? We’ve compiled some of the world’s most reliable research to offer you an expert overview of what petrol prices will look like in the future.
How much oil is left?
According to experts, there are currently an estimated 1.3 trillion barrels of oil reserves in the world's major fields. If consumed at the current rate, this supply is expected to last the world for another 40 years. That said, some experts are predicting oil reserves will run dry in as little as five years. At the end of the day, the estimate largely depends on whether any new oil sources are discovered over the next few years.
How much can we expect to pay?
Whatever way you look at it, petrol prices have been steadily rising since the modern world began to realise the value of the versatile resource. Today, a barrel of oil costs around US$135. In 2007 the value was US$64, while in 1998 it would have cost just US$10. While petrol prices did hit a four year low earlier this month, the respite is not expected to last. Experts predict that producers will not tolerate the low prices forever and are encouraging motorists to enjoy the cheaper prices while they still can.
A spokesman from the AA Motoring Organisation explains, “It may be a false dawn to say low prices will be around for a while, but we should enjoy it while it is there. Arguably the forecourts should do more. Where there is an opportunity to increase margin they will.”
So how much will it cost to fill up a British tank in 2020? Malcolm Bracken, a professional oil analyst claims petrol could set motorists back up to £2.50 a litre by 2020. Given that the average price is currently around £1.30, this represents a huge jump. As well as rising oil prices, Bracken also suggests that the price hike will be largely influenced by the introduction of new tax regulations.
What’s the solution?
While the exact date remains uncertain, the world’s petrol supply is eventually going to be run dry. Shale may play an increasingly large part in the future, as discussed this article, Shale Plays Offer Unprecedented Opportunities. But, when this time comes, the world will need to source its energy from elsewhere. Already an increasing number of companies are beginning to launch electric cars and hybrid vehicles. Solar powered engines are also on the cards.
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