Preparing for Peak Oil in South Africa

An Integrated Case Study

  • Jeremy J. Wakeford

Part of the SpringerBriefs in Energy book series (BRIEFSENERGY)

Also part of the Energy Analysis book sub series (ENERGYANALYS)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xvii
  2. Jeremy J. Wakeford, Jeremy J. Wakeford
    Pages 1-9
  3. Jeremy J. Wakeford, Jeremy J. Wakeford
    Pages 11-33
  4. Jeremy J. Wakeford, Jeremy J. Wakeford
    Pages 35-48
  5. Jeremy J. Wakeford, Jeremy J. Wakeford
    Pages 49-61
  6. Jeremy J. Wakeford, Jeremy J. Wakeford
    Pages 63-77
  7. Jeremy J. Wakeford, Jeremy J. Wakeford
    Pages 79-94
  8. Jeremy J. Wakeford, Jeremy J. Wakeford
    Pages 95-110
  9. Back Matter
    Pages 111-123

About this book


Oil is the lifeblood of modern industrial economies. Petroleum powers virtually all motorized transport, which in turn enables most economic activities and provides mobility for citizens. But oil is a finite resource that is steadily depleting. In the past decade, the phenomenon of global peak oil – the fact that annual world oil production must at some point reach a maximum and then decline – has emerged as one of the twenty-first century’s greatest challenges. South Africa imports over two-thirds of its petroleum fuels, and history has shown that oil price shocks generally translate into a weakening currency, rising consumer prices, increasing joblessness and a slow-down in economic activity. This book examines the implications of peak oil for socioeconomic welfare in South Africa and proposes a wide range of strategies and policies for mitigating and adapting to the likely impacts. It contains a wealth of data in tables and figures that illustrate South Africa’s oil dependencies and vulnerabilities to oil shocks. The material is presented from a systems perspective and is organized in key thematic areas including energy, transport, agriculture, macro-economy and society. The study highlights the risks, uncertainties and difficult choices South Africa faces if it is to tackle its oil addiction, and thereby serves as an example for researchers, planners and policy-makers in the developing world who will sooner or later confront similar challenges. This case study brings a fresh southern perspective to an issue of global importance, and shows how the era of flattening and then declining global oil supplies may be a pivotal period in which either the project of industrialization progressively runs out of steam, or societies are able to undertake a proactive transition to a more sustainable future.


ASPO Agriculture, Peak Oil Effects Energy Independence Oil Depletion Peak Oil Adaptation Strategies Peak Oil Mitigation Strategies Peak Oil Socioeconomic Implications Peak Oil South Africa South Africa Energy Analysis South Africa Peak Oil Systems-Oriented Holistic Approach Sustainability Transition South Africa Transport, Peak Oil Effects on

Authors and affiliations

  • Jeremy J. Wakeford
    • 1
  1. 1.Stellenbosch UniversityStellenbosch,South Africa

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Jeremy J. Wakeford 2013
  • Publisher Name Springer, New York, NY
  • eBook Packages Energy
  • Print ISBN 978-1-4614-9517-8
  • Online ISBN 978-1-4614-9518-5
  • Series Print ISSN 2191-5520
  • Series Online ISSN 2191-5539
  • Buy this book on publisher's site
Industry Sectors
Materials & Steel
Chemical Manufacturing
Energy, Utilities & Environment
Oil, Gas & Geosciences