Wednesday, December 31, 2008

such a winters day

No, this isn't a post about California, any more than anywhere else. Just a pause for reflection, after four December's of posting on the topic of peak energy - something I understand and mean to be peak usable energy in an industrial sense.

In other words, something which is rooted in and provides context for our present living arrangement. Our civilization.

There is another leg sprouting from our culture, and that is capital. Interesting to notice is the uneasy relationship between capital and energy.

Oil pricing on the markets has seen violent, volatile shifts this year - whipsawed by a rising and falling dollar, the inertia gathering behind the global depression and yet this is all against a backdrop of almost unabated consumption of energy. A few percentage points change at the top.

Depletion of those easy reservoirs of energy - - coal, oil, natural gas, continues. A steady drumbeat.

Commentators who don't understand how investments in renewable energy are ultimately indexed to non-renewable energy, are weaving the usual myths about how investments in renewables will be stalled because the price point of oil is too low.

So-called alternative energy is now, as it has been for some time, a necessary investment if our culture wishes to tramp a bit further along the path known.

Investment in alternative energy might also make obvious that other paths are possible, and even desirable.

But it is kind of moot, as capital shrivels, the bizarre effect may be that energy for change lies latent, or more likely misused for war and rumors of same. Just another night in Gaza. At the end of the day it is about trust.

The year ahead could illuminate our potential. Be hopeful that it will not show a gully carved down to hell.

We all know our vices too well. The untouched heights are what we seek.

Happy New Year,
jon / 2008