“The end of oil is closer than you think. Oil production could peak next year. Just kiss your lifestyle goodbye”. A rollicking doomsday story in today’s Guardian, by John Vidal, revisits the so-called “peak oil” contoversy about whether a global peak to oil production is approaching. According to Vidal, “the US government knows that conventional oil is running out fast. …world oil reserves are being depleted three times as fast as they are being discovered”. The US government does not want to admit the reality of the situation, writes Vidal, but a group of ultra-conservative Swiss financiers has asked Colin Campbell, an author of the Peak Oil scenario, to tell them about the beginning of the end of the oil age. “The first half of the oil age now closes” Campbell is quoted as saying; “It lasted 150 years and saw the rapid expansion of industry, transport, trade, agriculture and financial capital, allowing the population to expand six-fold. The second half now dawns, and will be marked by the decline of oil and all that depends on it, including financial capital.” Now we didn’t discuss oil shocks at Doors 8 in Delhi, but we did hear Margrit Kennedy make a persuasive case that the world money system, too, is heading for collapse. (We’ve just re-posted a revised version of Professor Kennedy’s presentation). Now I don’t know if this is a reality check, or an unreality check, but on my office wall is a Guardian story from a few years back with the headline “Human life on the planet under threat”; the piece was run on page 13 of the paper under “International News”.