"By 2020, production growth of easily accessible oil and gas is unlikely to match demand growth ... The western way of life with cheap access to a wide variety of consumer choice and cheap energy will be increasingly challenged as lifestyles follow GDP levels and balance across the globe ... By 2040, the Chinese economy is likely to have ‘peaked’ ... For the period out to 2020 however, most South Asian countries, especially China and India will predominantly pursue hydrocarbon-based fuel sources. This increasing demand for fossil fuels, combined with greater volatility in supply and the expected passing of the point of peak ‘easy oil’, will mean that oil prices will rise significantly out to 2040. Rapid increases in price are likely to increase the viability of alternative fuel sources, such as tar sands, shale gas, coal and renewable technologies as well as nuclear energy, especially for India which has large thorium reserves.  Thus, the increasing price of oil, which is likely to reach $500 a barrel by 2040, will drive the development of alternative fuel sources.  Of the South Asian countries, China is likely to have the best access to oil, due to enduring bilateral agreements. China is also likely to exploit its significant coal reserves and will increasingly lead in the development of more efficient coal-based energy generation techniques ... If China were to sustain its present rate of per capita growth, by 2030 it would consume the same level of oil produced by today’s entire oil industry ... As the cost of fossil fuels rise, and the availability of ‘easy oil’ reduces, the region will inevitably turn to nuclear power as the immediate energy alternative ... The global population is likely to grow from 6.9 billion in 2010 to 8.9 billion by 2040 ... Due to the structure of many South Asian societies and their economies, the large numbers of people living in poverty is likely to continue over the period and may lead to periods of unrest or instability. It is estimated that in 2040 approximately one billion people living in South Asia will be in poverty." 

Zur Studie des britischen Verteidigungsministeriums, erschienen beim Development, Concepts and Doctrine Centre (DCDC), UK Ministry of Defence (Oktober 2012) »