Business: Oil: What's Left out There

A new study delays doomsday, but there is still a crisis

The visions of an imminent energy Armageddon that seemed so plausible right after the 1973 Arab oil embargo have gradually faded, but the serious questions remain: How much oil does the world have left? When will it run out?

Firm answers are difficult to come by; witness the Central Intelligence Agency's forays into the slippery field of oil forecasting. In his drive for a conservation-oriented energy program early last year, President Carter leaned heavily on a CIA forecast for his ominous prediction that depletion of all of the proven reserves "in the...

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