Navigation Links
Peak oil and public health: Political common ground?

WASHINGTON, D.C. (August 8, 2011)Peak petroleumthe point at which the maximum rate of global oil extraction is reached, after which the rate of production begins to declineis a hot topic in scientific and energy circles. When will it occur? What will the impact be? While geologists and economists debate the specifics, American University School of Communication professor Matthew Nisbet believes peak petroleum and the associated risks to public health may provide an opportunity to bring conservatives and liberals together in the move toward alternative forms of energy.

"Somewhat surprisingly, conservatives are more likely to associate a major spike in oil prices with a strong threat to public health," said Nisbetan expert in the field of climate and energy communication. "This could present a gateway to engagement with conservatives on energy policy."

In a forthcoming peer-reviewed study at the American Journal of Public Health, Nisbet and his co-authors find that 76% of people in a recent survey believe oil prices are either "very likely" or "somewhat likely" to triple in the next five years. A dramatic spike in oil prices is a commonly recognized outcome of peak petroleum.

Even more telling is that 69% of respondents believe a sharp rise in oil prices would be either "very harmful" (44%) or "somewhat harmful" (25%) to the health of Americans. According to the survey, strong conservatives were the most sensitive to these possible risks, with 53% believing that a spike in oil prices would be "very harmful" to human health. Similarly, in a separate analysis of the data, those who were strongly "dismissive" of climate change (52%) were the most likely of any subgroup to associate a sharp spike in oil prices with a negative impact on public health.

According to Nisbet and his co-authors, this creates a challenge and an opportunity for the environmental and public health communities. Peak oil and energy prices are often talked about in terms of economic and environmental impact, but rarely as a public health concern. Nisbet argues that his findings show reason to reframe the debate.

"These findings suggest that a broad cross-section of Americans may be ready to engage in dialogue about ways to manage the health risks that experts associate with peak petroleum," said Nisbet. "Peak petroleum may not currently be a part of the public health portfolio, but we need to start the planning process."


Contact: Wes Hickman
American University

Related medicine news :

1. Study suggests increase in public health spending results in healthier people
2. Charles to receive GSAs 2011 Richard Kalish Innovative Publication Award
3. More Families Turning to Public Plans for Childrens Health Care
4. Harvard School of Public Health receives $14.1 million to test childbirth checklist
5. Publicly Insured Kids May Get Less Comprehensive Care
6. IADR/AADR publish study on use of Twitter for public health surveillance of dental pain
7. Children with public health insurance less likely to receive comprehensive primary care
8. You are what you tweet: Tracking public health trends with Twitter
9. IASLC welcomes publication of CT screening results from National Lung Screening Trial
10. Government should consider public health implications of all major legislation
11. Improving access to essential medicines through public-private partnerships
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... November 30, 2015 , ... ... is one of a select few plastic surgeons in the New York City ... , SculpSure™ is the world’s first heat-induced laser treatment for fat loss in ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... , ... November 30, 2015 ... ... ), a leading provider of enterprise Time and Attendance/Workforce Management cloud-based solutions, ... the Microsoft Partner Program with competencies in the Application Development, demonstrating a ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... November 30, 2015 , ... Workstation solutions provider ... 30 HealthPostures’ dealers located throughout the United States, is OneStop Ergonomics. The addition ... industrial, manufacturing and government workers and organizational leaders that are introduced to innovative ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... November 30, 2015 , ... CTI Group (Holdings) Inc. ... organizations through communication analytics, announced today that their Proteus® VoIP QMS solution now ... quality. , Proteus® VoIP QMS (Quality Management System) does this by ...
(Date:11/29/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... November 30, 2015 , ... The Cyber Monday deal is a deep ... is the right time to get gifts for the skin care lover in your circle. ... filled with serums . This year, the 3 serums are staples: Collagen, Retinol and Hyaluronic ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/30/2015)... Belgium , Nov. 30, 2015   ... focused on developing blood-based diagnostic tests for a broad range ... will present at the LD Micro Conference, which will be ... CA. Attending from VolitionRx will be David ... Powell , Vice President of Investor Relations. ® ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... Israel , Nov. 30, 2015  OticPharma, ... acquiring and developing innovative therapies for ear, nose, and ... Keith A. Katkin as chairman of the company,s ... chief executive officer for OticPharma, Ltd.  "Keith brings a ... he will be able to share this experience and ...
(Date:11/29/2015)... Nov. 29, 2015   Royal Philips  (NYSE: PHG, ... solutions at the 2015 Radiological Society of North America ... McCormick Place in Chicago . Visitors ... the company,s broad portfolio of integrated Diagnostic Imaging, Clinical ... increase clinical performance, improve workflow and create a superior ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: