Is the worlds Oil Running Out?

Essay by JonorosieUniversity, Bachelor'sA-, March 2008

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Law presentation – Is the world’s oil running out?The Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) is a permanent, intergovernmental organisation which was created at the Baghdad Conference in September of 1960 by Iraq, Iran, Kuwait, Venezuela and Saudi Arabia. In the following years these 5 founding nations were joined by Quatar, Indonesia, Libya, United Arab Emirates, Algeria, Nigeria, Ecuador, Gabon and this year by Angola. Its headquarters is in Vienna, Austria.

From OPEC’s website: ‘OPEC's objective is to co-ordinate and unify petroleum policies among Member Countries, in order to secure fair and stable prices for petroleum producers; an efficient, economic and regular supply of petroleum to consuming nations; and a fair return on capital to those investing in the industry.’ defines ‘colluding’ as “To act together secretly to achieve a fraudulent, illegal, or deceitful purpose; conspire”.

The same site defines a ‘cartel’ as:1. “An international syndicate, combine, or trust formed especially to regulate prices and output in some field of business” and2.

“A combination of independent business organizations formed to regulate production, pricing, and marketing of goods by the members”Clearly OPEC, by it’s own admission, is colluding and is a cartel. But who can actually do anything about this?The International Court of Justice acts as a world court. I thought this would be the right place to start looking…The only cases in the international world court with regards to oil is a 1992 case between ‘Islamic Republic of Iran v. United States of America’ in which Iran claims it was a breach of a 1955 treaty which the two countries signed when a US warship destroyed 4 offshore oil rigs in 1987 and 1988.

The other case was Anglo-Iranian Oil Co. (United Kingdom v. Iran) which the UK put forward to the court when Iran tried to nationalise...