304 pages, 8.55 × 5.7 × 1.15 in
July 19, 2012
Random House of Canada
The following ISBNs are associated with this title:
ISBN - 10: 0307357511
ISBN - 13: 9780307357519
Read from the Book
IntroductionREDEFINING RECOVERYBEING AN ECONOMIST CAN RUIN YOUR APPETITE.It is probably not the only job that has that effect. I’ve never worked as a taxidermist, but I can see that it might turn me off fish. My job, though, gets me worried about fish in a whole different way.I like salmon — who doesn’t? Salmon consumption has risen about 23 percent each year for the last decade or so. There are a number of good reasons to eat more fish: we all want food high in omega-3s, we want to eat less saturated fat, we want healthy protein for our low-carb diets. But here’s the key reason for the amount of salmon on your dinner table: cheap oil has been subsidizing the cost of fish. Just like Wal-Mart and Tesco and big-box retailers around the world have been able to cut prices on almost everything by taking advantage of cheap shipping and cheap Asian labor, salmon went from being delicious local seafood to being another global commodity. Cheap oil gives us access to a pretty big world.In the global economy, no one thinks about distance in miles — they think in dollars. If oil is cheap, it really doesn’t matter how far a factory is from a showroom or a farmer’s field from a supermarket. It’s the cost of other things, like labor or tax, that determines what happens where. An Atlantic salmon caught off the coast of Norway is destined to be moved around the world just like a ball bearing or a microprocessor.First the fish is taken to port in Norway, where it is frozen and transferred to a
Table of Contents
Introduction: Redefining Recovery
Chapter 1: Supply Shift
Chapter 2: Demand Shift
Chapter 3: Head Fakes
Chapter 4: Heading for the Exit Lane
Chapter 5: Coming Home
Chapter 6: The Other Problem with Fossil Fuels
Chapter 7: Just How Big Is Cleveland?
Chapter 8: Going Local
Conclusion: Chasing the Inconnu
From the Publisher
What do subprime mortgages, Atlantic salmon dinners, SUVs and globalization have in common?
They all depend on cheap oil. And in a world of dwindling oil supplies and steadily mounting demand around the world, there is no such thing as cheap oil. Oil might be less expensive in the middle of a recession, but it will never be cheap again.
Take away cheap oil, and the global economy is getting the shock of its life.
From the ageing oilfields of Saudi Arabia and the United States to the Canadian tar sands, from the shopping malls of Dubai to the shuttered auto plants of North America and Europe, from the made-in-China products on the shelves of the Wal-Mart down the road to the collapse of Wall Street giants, everything is connected to the price of oil
Interest rates, carbon trading, inflation, farmers’ markets and the wave of trade protectionism washing up all over the world in the wake of various economic stimulus and bailout packages – they all hinge on the new realities of a world where demand for oil eventually outstrips supply.
According to maverick economist Jeff Rubin, there will be no energy bailout. The global economy has suffered oil crises in the past, but this time around the rules have changed. And that means the future is not going to be a continuation of the past. For generations we have built wealth by burning more and more oil. Our cars, our homes, our whole world has been getting bigger in the cheap-oil era. Now it is about to get smaller.
There will be winners as well as losers as the age of globalization comes to an end. The auto industry will never recover from this oil-induced recession, but other manufacturers will be opening up mothballed factories. Distance will soon cost money, and so will burning carbon – both will bring long-lost jobs back home. We may not see the kind of economic growth that globalization has brought, but local economies will be revitalized, as will our cities and neighborhoods.
Whether we like it or not, our world is about to get a whole lot smaller.
About the Author
Jeff Rubin was the Chief Economist and Chief Strategist at CIBC World Markets where he worked for over 20 years. He was one of the first economists to accurately predict soaring oil prices back in 2000 and is now one of the world's most sought-after energy experts. He lives in Toronto.
"The book is a great read, and one that should be required for anyone with a long-term interest in Canadian energy, transportation, manufacturing or agriculture."
— The Globe and Mail
"Jeff Rubin is not your typical eggheaded senior economist.... And the controversy that has dogged his work is about to hit the boiling point.... So get set. If Jeff Rubin says something is coming, you better listen. Love him or hate him."
— Canadian Business
"Should be mandatory reading for all corporate executives."
— National Post