(EnergyAsia, December 6 2011, Tuesday) — The story below written by Yahoo Singapore’s finance editor Elena Torrijos was published by Yahoo Singapore on December 3.

Singapore needs to plan an economic roadmap that takes into account the likelihood that the price of oil could reach between US$200 and US$300 per barrel, a writer and analyst on global resource issues said.

In his new book “Singapore, the Energy Economy” launched recently, Ng Weng Hoong said a strategy and programs should be put in place to consciously reduce or at least cap domestic energy demand growth in Singapore on the basis that the era of cheap oil is over.

Touching on the peak oil debate, the veteran journalist at www.EnergyAsia.com, who has specialised in energy issues since 1986, pointed out that while there may be plenty of oil and other resources in the world, they have become costlier to find, extract, refine, handle and deliver to the market.

Meanwhile, oil demand will just keep on going higher as the global population, which recently hit seven billion, continues to grow and people live even longer, he said.

“Singapore’s long-term survival will depend on its ability to wisely use resources and, where possible, to consciously and strategically reduce consumption,” he said.

“Its planners will have to contend with the idea that there are limits to the current economic model and dangers in a one-dimensional policy focus on GDP growth,” he added.

In his book, Ng extensively outlines how Singapore built itself as an oil refining and trading hub that helped produce the country’s economic miracle in its first 50 years of self-rule and independence.

However, he warns of challenges ahead.

He noted that, based on government statistics, Singapore’s electricity demand has been growing nearly 9% per year from 1961 to 2010 while the population has increased from 1.7 million to more than five million over the same period.

In comments to Yahoo! Singapore Finance, Ng said, “How do we keep creating more land, put up more building, increase population, use up more resources, deal with worsening pollution? We have a demand monster. We don’t recognise it, and we’re still feeding it.”

He suggested that Singapore develop an Energy Return on Energy Invested (EROEI) Index that measures the amount of energy produced from investing a certain amount of energy, and expressed as a ratio of energy produced over energy invested.

The rest of the story is available at http://sg.finance.yahoo.com/news/Singapore-needs-plan-end-yahoofinancesgwp-4039316479.html?x=0.