A review of Diesal? And Other Future Transport Fuels (60 minute briefing series) by Adrian Nixon.
Can you make the cultural change from being miners to being farmers?
“This book is the first in a new series of briefings that can be read in about an hour. In our fast paced lives there is no time to read books longer than necessary.
A number of important future trends emerge from my work, so I have decided to write about them. I find the future fascinating and You probably do too.
This is not guesswork, it is forward thinking. Everything is based on a solid foundation of facts that are referenced at the end of the book for you to check for yourself, if you are so inclined.
You are probably a sophisticated reader, so you will know that over two thirds of all the oil we dig out of the ground is burned just to move ourselves and our things around.
You will also know that oil is getting more and more expensive. Yet the oil is not running out, yet.
This book looks at the future trend of oil supply and asks what is the future for transport fuels. The answer is Diesal, read on to find out why..”
A disclosure to begin with: I know the author personally. To put that disclosure in context though, the reason I know him is that I went to see him speak a year or so ago on a range of current and future insights, and was sufficiently engaged by his intelligent but plain and data-backed approach that I made contact with him afterwards. One of his topics that day is expounded on with startling efficiency in this book.
There is no flannel. The author condenses a huge range of knowledge and research into a one-hour briefing that is a model of clarity, and is all the more engaging for it. The writing style is simple, but far from simplistic. The topic is, or should be, of pressing interest to any executive or entrepreneur in business today, or for that matter to any general reader trying to understand and put in context what they see and hear in the news.
But in particular, this short book should be required reading for anyone who expects to have a long-term future in the travel sector.
Although the book is ostensibly an introduction to the emerging technology of biodiesel and it’s potential social, commercial and economic significance, ‘Diesal’ also serves as an accessible yet enlightening primer on energy sources from traditional oil and coal, through ‘tight oil’ and other unconventional hydrocarbons, to ‘low energy nuclear reaction’ and alternative energy sources. Along the way we learn the importance of various measures of energy density, and without being overburdened by technicalities, we are educated in the essential characteristics of our primary energy sources and potential alternatives.
Above all, despite the understated title and spare prose, this is not a book for technologists as such – the author consistently frames his subject in the context of commerce, business strategy and policy. This is done objectively – there is no proselytising, no agenda other than to challenge us to understand and to consider our response.