Daniel Yergin is a highly regarded expert on the global oil industry who won a Pulitzer Prize for his 1991 book The Prize. His main claim to fame was dismissing the idea of peak oil, the notion that the black stuff would prove finite rather than harder to access. He is vice-chairman of the business information service IHS Markit and a popular public speaker. Questions such as whether the world economy will take an age to get back to $90 trillion after the pandemic rather than powering onwards to $100 trillion as predicted really matter to him in ways that may leave others cold, particularly at a time when firms are downsizing their workforces and offices are unoccupied.
Yergin’s new book is a bit of a pantomime horse, though it claims to be an exercise in geopolitical cartography reminiscent of Tim Marshall’s much simpler bestseller Prisoners of Geography. The horse’s head consists of a review of the geopolitical tensions that ensued after the demise of US global dominance