Post Peak Oil

When I started Kurashi some 10 years ago, the issue of peak oil quickly was brought to my attention by some great people that knew a lot about energy issues. The blog to follow back then was The Oil Drum and there were others. Since then, it is thought that peak oil did indeed happen around 2006-2008, so we are now in an era of uncharted territory, which some of us started to prepare for back then. I focus on consumption issues and what is called "Responsible Consumption" - meaning we should consume resources that are finite (like oil) as little as possible... Thus I have no car, try to buy locally produced food, and care about my electricity bill. I also make some of my own veggies, although that is just a small step in the right direction, I know.

Thanks Pandabonium for the link to Our Renewable Future, a book and website that is a great resource about this era. Nice to see that the debate has matured to this level (despite what you may see in the mainstreem press in some countries with their heads still stuck in the sand, ahem, make that tar-sand).

Maybe my only issue with this is the language, and the authors' focus on "energy use" while I prefer the term "energy consumption." The difference, to me working for 20 years in the consumer movement, is that when we "consume" we do so with awareness, and to the degree that we can, responsibility. To just "use" is to take that away. Responsibly reducing energy consumption is the only way to solve the many issues facing mankind.

Already in the early 1960s, US President J. F. Kennedy pioneered the idea of consumer rights, a profound concept that has since been developed all around the world. That is a concept that still strongly empowers the consumer organizations, as well as the environmental organizations, that try to educate people and create a more sustainable future for us all on this finite planet.

Join the fun, but do take a look at Our Renewable Future, a remarkable research project by Richard Heinberg and David Fridley!

The book concludes by discussing the critically important questions of how to ensure that everyone benefits from the renewable energy transition and what steps can and should be taken now to put us on a path toward a truly just and sustainable future. The goal of this book is to help readers think more clearly and intelligently about our renewable future. An all-renewable world will present opportunities as well as challenges. And building that world will entail more than just the construction of enormous numbers of solar panels and wind turbines. Along the way, we will learn that how we use energy is as important as how we get it. Indeed, unless we adapt our energy usage patterns with the same vigor as is devoted to changing energy sources, the transition could result in a substantial reduction of economic functionality for society as a whole.

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