Thursday, February 16, 2006

a pessimistic challenge

The light tone of my previous post aside, (Corn whiskey is fer drinking, not GM Hummers), I would like to highlight one more item from Professor Deffeyes’s latest journal entry:

The Times reports that solar energy today supplies one percent of US electricity; the hope is to double that to 2 percent by the year 2025. By 2025, we're going to be back in the Stone Age.

By 2025, we're going to be back in the Stone Age.

Ethanol, fuel cells, and solar cells are not the only shimmering dreams. Methane hydrates, oil shale, and the Yucca Mountain radioactive waste depository would be better off forgotten. There are plenty of solid opportunities. Energy conservation is by far the most important.

Here is the challenge. All takers. This is the freaking point of Peak Oil. It isn't theoretical.

The world is at peak now. Give or take. What replaces oil? The “markets”, as magical as they may be, are not now or in the future an actual source of energy, and thus industrial capacity. Human ingenuity and money markets haven’t yet granted immortality, or turned water into wine, though both would seem to be in strong demand.

What replaces oil?

A newly organized way of life which intrinsically saves energy? I’ll draw up a plan, will you then agree to live in my utopia?

A new source of energy, LIKE oil but NOT oil? (I hear whales contain oil, if you squeeze 'em.)

What? Specifically?

Everything from turkey gut recycling to solar towers has been examined on this blog. They all fall short as a method to replace liquid fuel on a timescale that matters. Nuclear is a joke; wind kicks the tail of nuclear, but is no kind of liquid fuel.

I want to know. What fixes oil depletion?

Don’t try and bullshit me. Billions of lives are at stake. Maybe yours.

2 Comments:

At 9:50 PM, February 17, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

A friend of mine recently described my take on the future as "having little skulls and crossbones floating around it".

He's not having any of the pessimism, but I was recently in a store that lost power for upwards of an hour, and people were helpless. The store was non-functioning.

Every time I turn the water on or drive anywhere I wonder.. how much longer will this be possible?

Clare

 
At 1:36 AM, February 19, 2006, Blogger monkeygrinder said...

The means to sustain our way of life after peak oil, and even our population, has not yet been identified.

That is what concerns me.

Markets are markets, they sell and divide things that exist.

I think a rational sharing of resources as oil winds down would be very helpfull. The trick is convincing people to be rational.

 

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