Since the first Oil Crisis in the 1973 I have read many heavy dry technical articles along with occasional book on the need for change in light of an inevitable future demises of world oil supplies. With the new century at last there is to be seen some belated professional acknowledgment of the seriousness of the Peak Oil challenge to technological societies very survival.

But as the time left for prudent preparations is quickly vanishing, political tardiness nourished by broad public indifference threatens the worse of all possible post Peak Oil worlds.  Unfortunately activist, academics, authors and journalist while striving to awaken the public from a soporific denial have tended towards ever more shrill sensationalised tales of doom.

While everybody has been told not judge a book by the cover, I have to admit to being quite circumspect upon

 my first sighting of  "Peak Oil Paradigm Shift
- The Urgent Need For a Sustainable Energy Model"
The glowing reviews on the cover for such a small book, on so very a complex subject, quite frankly seemed too good to be true, more akin to the promotions for a flying-pigs dispatcher.

Written by Bilaal Abdullah an electrical & software engineer in the oil industry of Trinidad & Tobago (two small Caribbean islands) it is just plain brilliant.  By a long chalk the best written, most comprehendible material (book, paper, article, website, blog.. etc.)   I have ever seen on nightmare that is Peak Oil. In a deceptively light and breezy style that a school child or one's aged granny would find an enjoyable read B.Abdullah calmly expounds all the critical complexity and horror that is Peak Oil.  In pleasant contrast to the often rabid jingoism or despair of many North American and British authors, "Peak Oil Paradigm Shift" has an earthy optimism mixed with a sunny detached honesty of what may soon befall us all. B.Abdullah pays particular attention to the opportunities and risk that developing nations will face after Oil Peaks.

For those folks that already are well abreast of the Peak Oil issue there is unfortunately not much new in this book. Despite flagging "The Urgent Need For a Sustainable Energy Model" in the book's title it does not attempt to outline or develop any 'Sustainable Energy Models' nor methodologies. {Now that would be a good follow up book, I'd say.} At only 143 pages it is quite a relaxing way for refreshing one's own thoughts on this complex subject. But as a book to recommend or pass on to friends and family  just new to the Peak Oil issue, it is unsurpassed. 

The paper-back is only US$16.95 (+ delivery ?) and is probably best ordered directly from the publisher online (over the net) at 

27 July 2005.  W. Shawn Gray,   (Knowledge Engineer, Futurist, Artist) :
Chief Conceptualist,  AuzGnosis Pty. Ltd. ACN 087569391
Blue Mountains,  NSW. Australia.  


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