Following up on an earlier post about falling Saudi oil exports, there's some recent news illustrating the problem:
Saudi Arabia burned record monthly volumes of oil in June and July, official government figures show, contrary to the top crude producer's plan to temper its summer oil burning spree this year with more gas.The report notes that from 2004 to 2010, Saudi domestic consumption of crude oil for power generation increased by 240%!!! Much of this goes to run air conditioning and desalination - both of which are important facilities when you live in a desert... This leaves ever smaller amounts remaining to be exported, so the only way Saudi can balance its budget is with prices steadily rising. But as that's happening anyway, they don't need to do anything on this front...
Full news article is here.