Some people wonder what will happen if we run out of non-renewable resources. This is something that researchers have also been pondering for quite some time now. They’ve come up with several possibilities, including:
- We’ll pay more money for raw materials, because there will be less of them available. Since we’re so dependent on many of these non-renewable resources, the price increase could actually be quite significant. In turn, it would also cost more to produce electricity.
- Those countries who rely on importing these raw materials will pay more. They’ll still remain competitive though, since this price increase will affect all countries equally. On the other hand, those countries who export a lot of these raw materials will make more money, because of the idealistic demand for these products. Unfortunately, they’ll eventually run out of these raw materials altogether. This will negatively effect their export revenue, which could really damage their economies.
- In the long run, the rising prices of scarce commodities that will happen when we run out of non-renewable energy offer incentives for firms and governments to develop alternatives. This is why they’re working to find viable alternatives to petroleum. Unfortunately, free markets respond to changes. They don’t predict shortages in the future. This can really cause problems in the market.
As you can see, there are a lot of variables at work here. This effect depends on whether governments intervene to subsidize alternatives. However, speculating what will happen if we run out of non-renewable resources is important so we’re ready.