Slideshow: Peak Gold is on its Way

Jean Laherrére at The Oil Drum sees a permanent decline forming in world gold production. From his analysis The Business Insider has selected several charts that best explain the compelling case he’s made for peak gold.

Here are a few highlights:

* Throughout history cumulative gold production has risen alongside growth in human population, but it looks like gold production will peak and begin to peter out sometime in roughly 2050.

* Growth in world gold production was fairly steady up until the 1800s when it exploded along with population.

* The world’s annualized gold production peaked in 2000. Since then the average grade is going down and refining the lower quality grades of gold is more expensive.

* Gold exploration budgets have increased more than 600 percent since 2002, but since the 1980s there have still been far fewer large discoveries.

To see the full 14-chart slideshow visit The Business Insider for its coverage of the coming collapse of the global gold mining industry.