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Oil could plummet to $35 a barrel next year if OPEC doesn't reach an agreement by the spring, oil price tracker Tom Kloza said Wednesday.
The founder of Oil Price Information Services told CNBC's "Squawk Box" that he expects at least a "lip service agreement" from OPEC members Thursday, when they meet to discuss output, but the members will largely ignore it, creating a bigger crisis in about six months.
"When you look at the second half of 2015, that's when you see oil beginning to dwarf demand by about a million, a million and a half barrels a day," he said. "Thirty-five dollars is a possibility if they don't get an agreement next spring because that's when the oil really starts to build and you can have a billion barrels of oil with really no place to put it."
At that point, U.S. deep-water drilling and mature shale projects can keep pumping, but shale plays that require significant investment could be cut, he said.
The slowdown in shale growth has already begun, and the growth of the U.S. oil industry could slow to 750,000 barrels a day from earlier estimates of 1 million barrels.
Oil prices have fallen 30 percent from their highs in June.
Traders are likely to see some unofficial production restraint from Saudi Arabia and its Gulf Arab allies as they aim to chill the production growth rate among U.S. producers and prevent excess supply from flooding the market, said Greg Priddy, director of global energy at the Eurasia Group.
The chance that OPEC produces a disappointing headline at the meeting on Thursday has not been completely priced into oil markets at this point, but it's unlikely that oil will fall to the $50-to-$60 range on the news alone, he said.
"If the full-flood scenario played out and you actually had to kill off a million barrels a day of production growth, we could very well be there," he said.
Kloza said OPEC ministers may agree this week to cut production by 750,000 to 1 million barrels per day, but members will likely produce all they can, and there will be no compliance with the accord, except from the Saudis, Kuwaitis and the United Emirates.
Iran, Iraq and Venezuela are unlikely to stick to an agreement because they are already below their quotas and the production levels they need to support social programs and balance their budgets, he said.
Priddy said the Saudis are likely to seek language in a communique that commits members to share the burden of production cuts, but the meeting is unlikely to produce quotas with individual numbers for members.
The problem with the Iranian position is that, as far as they're concerned, the country has been cutting production for several years due to sanctions related to its nuclear program, which it sees as unfair and enriching Saudi Arabia, he said.
Unplanned oil outages over the last four years caused by the Iran sanctions and turmoil in Libya have offset the overage of U.S. shale growth in the face of relatively weak demand, he said.
"It's kind of masked the effect of the shale boom, and we've finally gotten to the point where the supply side has really won that battle, and OPEC has had to reckon with that, but those disruptions are why they haven't had to do so thus far," Priddy said.