RE: Grant Thomson’s letter of April 16 warning of diminishing oil resources for an increasing population – saying this undermines the case for a new high speed train service.

WHILE I agree with Grant Thomson about population numbers he has been misinformed by the Global Warming lobby. Actually as global warming is not proved we’ll change the name to: The Climate-Change-so-whatever-happens-we-were-right-and-just-to-keep-everybody-scared-we-tell-them-the-oil-is running-out brigade.

World oil consumption is currently 26,000Mb per year, proven oil reserves are 1.3 trillion barrels, that gives 40 years of easy to get oil. But improved recovery methods have extended the life of most oil fields; example – Shell recovered one billion barrels from an oil field discovered in 1911. This also applies to the North Sea and the Dorset oil fields. And when the liquid oil runs out, the Canadian and Venezuela oil sands have an estimated yield of another 3.6 trillion barrels.

And when that runs out the oil shale of USA, Russia and Brazil have an estimated yield of another 2.8 trillion barrels.

That gives a life expectancy for the oil economy of 200-300 years assuming there are no oil fields around the Falklands, Arctic, Antarctic, China, Africa, and Australia etc.

In the long-term, oil will increase in price, but that will lead to more efficient cars etc and more efficient recovery.

Engineering solutions will solve the world’s problems not unproven or politically corrected science. When the oil finally becomes too expensive to recover, the world will have two choices, go back to a pre-industrial pre- electric peasant society, (I’ll be the landlord) or use real science and engineering to keep the lights on.

D Fagan, Southview, High Wycombe.