A recent survey conducted by KPMG finds that the majority of E&P executives feel that oil will drop below $100 by year-end. However, it was only a slight majority of the 372 of the execs who felt this way, with 55% agreeing prices would fall below the century mark and 21% who thought it would settle just above the $100 range. However, a vocal minority of 39% feel that we've yet to see peak prices, which could conceivably last until 2010. With this new higher price level, 46% said there would be more foreign investment in and acquisition of U.S. energy assets, and 18% saying it will increase significantly. Other hot button issues discussed include the two elephants in the industry's room, global warming and ethanol. About 62% believe that global warming is real, but that it's part of a natural weather cycle, with 29% believing that warming is due to human actions and 9% believing it is completely false. A quarter of respondents thought the issue should be addressed by the market, with 11% supporting government-led carbon emission reduction and 16% favoring corporate tax incentives for investment in renewable energy. Only 15% of respondents thought it would be viable to mass-produce biodiesel by 2015, and 10% felt it would be viable to produce cellulosic ethanol. Can you imagine that oil falling below $100 would be considered a relief to consumers, especially since hitting a high of that figure was such a psychological issue for Americans? –Stephen Payne, Editor, Oil and Gas Investor This Week; spayne@hartenergy.com