Believe me, I am not happy about this.
Elon Musk better get some serious action going if we are going to prevent this:
That is the historic rate of total global oil consumption and the resulting projected future consumption declines data for total global oil resources taken from multiple sources.
Daily global consumption data found here
Total resources used for this graph included the recent (2005) 100% increase in claimed Venezuelan heavy oil extractable reserves. They also include all Canadian Bitumen-sourced (tar sand) oil and a generous 300 Billion Barrels of undiscovered Shale oil added as a buffer. These 300 billion additional barrels, added to the global projections, is what makes the graph above the BEST CASE.
In a worst case, the Keystone pipeline is not built, the Venezuelan heavy oil reserves are about 1/2 of their current value and there is significantly less shale oil to be found globally. In this scenario, global oil prices begin going up long before 2030 and global oil consumption begins to go into decline much more rapidly. While this may be an effective way to reduce CO2 emissions, if we don't prepare for this, it will be absolutely devastating to the global economy and significantly reduce our ability to adapt.
What makes this reality not really a good thing is the fact that heavy oil and bitumen (over half of the remaining global oil reserves left to burn) produce about 2X as much CO2 to extract and process the oil. Of course, the extra emissions are only a small portion of the CO2 emitted by the actual burning of the oil. Still, by switching, gradually, to 100% unconventional oil by 2030, the CO2 equivalent emission curve (cumulative) from 2012 to the future looks like this:
Note: increased methane emissions from the fracking production of "tight oil" (shale gas oil) is not included, this would bump up the total CO2 equivalent emissions slightly.
FYI graph of increased CO2 emissions due to extraction of heavy oil and Bitumen-sourced Oil -- Based on EPA data found here: http://yosemite.epa.gov/...