Man and his Environment. Proceedings of the Second by M. F. Mohtadi

By M. F. Mohtadi

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Japan imports about 50% of its crude oil from the Arab world, principally from Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Abu Dhabi. The other country in the Middle East which is a major exporter is, of course, Iran which supplies oil to Western Europe, Asia and the Far East. Iran has crude oil reserves estimated at 60 billion barrels. Nevertheless, the combined oil production of the Arab countries is more than three times that of Iran and represents the largest source of crude oil from a block of countries with common ties of language and religion.

A breakdown of these reserves by regions is presented in Table 1. More than half of the known reserves are in the Middle East, with another third in the Communist countries, Africa and the Asia-Pacific region. The industrialized nations of the Western world possess only about i 5% of the world reserves. This is of particular importance when weighed in context with regional demand for oil and the relative stability of supply to meet this demand. For years, a major portion of the world's oil reserves has been controlled by seven major oil companies (Jersey Standard, Shell, Gulf, Mobil, Texaco, Standard of California and British Petroleum).

Within the industrialized societies there is a technological cancer characteristic of growth economies. It is subtle, obscure and hidden from public view by its very nature. I wish to concern myself with it for the rest of this paper. I do not wish to pretend that population growth is not the principal danger; but I believe that to be everybody's own problem, not solved universally by specialist discussions. At this conference we have the opportunity to discuss some of the ways in which we can arm ourselves most effectively to meet the coming climacteric.

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