Vaclav Smil is Distinguished Professor at the University of Manitoba, Canada, and the author of many books, including Energy at the Crossroads: Global Perspectives and Uncertainties (2005), Energy in Nature and Society: General Energetics of Complex Systems (2007), Global Catastrophes and Trends: The Next Fifty Years (2008), and Why America Is Not a New Rome (2010), all published by MIT Press. He was awarded the 2007 Olivia Schieffelin Nordberg Award for excellence in writing and editing in the population sciences. Robert Meldrum is an actor, director and teacher with over 35 years experience. Originally a member of the Australian Performing Group at the Pram Factory in Melbourne, he has performed with all the major Australian theatre companies, and was a lecturer in acting at the Victorian College of the Arts for eight years.
In a fluent, easy style [Smil] delves into the world of oil from its discovery on the ground through to its effect on prices at the petrol pumps, and to its impact on future generations. -- The Good Book Guide Everything most people - including most economists and investment advisors - should know about the physics and economics of oil. -- National Post Terrific. Smil has done it again, producing a book from which we can all create new insights, this time explaining oil production, consumption and the broader impacts it has upon society. -- Chris Mottershead - Distinguished Advisor Energy and the Environment, BP plc, and Director of the Carbon Trust in London At last, an accurate and readable book which effectively presents the whole range of issues which are required for an understanding of the complex global oil system. -- Peter Odell - Professor Emeritus of International Energy Studies, Erasmus University, Rotterdam, and recipient of the 2006 OPEC Award.