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    Getting Real About Green Energy

    An honest analysis of what it CAN'T promise
    by Chris Martenson

    Friday, October 4, 2019, 2:58 PM

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I want to be optimistic about the future. I really do.

But there’s virtually no chance of the world transitioning gently to an alternative energy-powered future.

These Are The ‘Good Old Days’

I’m often asked where I stand on wind, solar and other alternative energy sources.

My answer is: I love them. But they’re incapable of enabling our society to smoothly slip over to powering itself by other means.

They’re not going to “save us”.

Some people are convinced otherwise. If we can just fight off the evil oil companies, get our act together, and install a national alternative energy system infrastructure, we’ll be just fine.  Meaning that we”ll be able to continue to live as we do today, but powered fully by clean renewable energy.

That’s just not going to happen. At least, not without a lot of painful disruption and sacrifice.

The top three reasons why are:

  1. Math
  2. Human behavior
  3. Time, scale, & cost

I walk through the detail below. I’m doing so to debunk the magical thinking behind the current “Green Revolution” because I fear it offers a false promise.

Look, I’m a huge fan of renewable energy. And I’m 1,000% in favor of weaning the world off of its toxic addiction to fossil fuels.

But we have to be eyes wide open about our future prospects. Deluding ourselves with “feel good” but unrealistic expectations about green energy will result in the same sort of poor decisions, malinvestment, and crushed dreams as fossil-based system has.

As we constantly repeat here at Peak Prosperity: Energy is everything. 

Without as much available, the future is going to be exceptionally difficult compared to the present. Which is why I call the time we’re living in now The Good Old Days.

Now is the time to prepare for what’s coming. To acquire the skills, the land, and make the financial, physical and emotional adjustments in your lifestyle that will boost your resilience for a future of less and more expensive energy.

Math

Let’s start with the math.

Suppose we agree on the goal to entirely replace fossil fuel energy by 2050.  (We’re going to have to do it by some point, because oil, coal and natural gas are all depleting finite resources.)

With 2050 as a starting point we can run some simple math.

We start by converting the three main fossil fuels – coal, oil and natural gas – into a common unit: the “millions of tons of oil equivalent” or Mtoe.

A million tons of oil = 1 Mtoe, obviously.  And there’s an amount of coal, if burned that has the same energy as 1 Mtoe.  Ditto for natural gas.  If we add up all of the fossil fuels burned in a given year, then we can express that as a single number in the many thousands of Mtoe.

Roger Pilke has run the math for us in his recent article in Forbes:

In 2018 the world consumed 11,743 Mtoe in the form of coal, natural gas and petroleum. The combustion of these fossil fuels resulted in 33.7 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions. In order for those emissions to reach net-zero, we will have to replace about 12,000 Mtoe of energy consumption expected for 2019.

(Source)

So that’s our starting point.  Whatever future alternative energy systems get installed will have to replace around 12,000 Mtoe.

Now, it bears noting that 12,000 Mtoe is a truly massive amount of energy.

To visualize this, let’s use gigantic oil-bearing cargo ships.  Here’s a picture of the Ultra Large Crude Carrier, the Oceania, which can hold a bit more than 3,000,000 barrels of oil at a time.  That’s a staggeringly massive ship.  Ginormous.

We’d need 2.4 of these massive ships to hold 1 Mtoe.  Which means we’d need a fleet of approximately 30,000 of these tankers to hold 12,000 Mtoe. (By the way, there are currently only 4 ships in the world of this size).

Because these truly gigantic ships are 1,246 feet in length, our fleet of 30,000 would stretch over 7,000 miles if parked stern to nose in a line.

Are you getting a sense yet for how mind-bogglingly large the world’s annual fossil energy consumption is?

So, what would it take to replace those 12,000 Mtoe with alternative fuels by 2050?

Pilke answers that for us:

Another useful number to know is that there are 11,051 days left until January 1, 2050.

To achieve net-zero carbon dioxide emissions globally by 2050 thus requires the deployment of >1 Mtoe of carbon-free energy consumption (~12,000 Mtoe/11,051 days) every day, starting tomorrow and continuing for the next 30+ years.

Achieving net-zero also requires the corresponding equivalent decommissioning of more than 1 Mtoe of energy consumption from fossil fuels every single day.

Yikes!  More than 1 Mtoe of alt-energy systems would have to be installed every single day?  Between now and Jan 1 2050?  No resting on Sundays even?

But that’s only half of the story.

We’d also have to decommission and retire an equivalent 1 Mtoe amount of still-functioning fossil fuel property, plant and equipment.  Do you have any idea how much money and embedded capital is contained in all the world’s current energy infrastructure — including our cars and homes —  that’s built around fossil fuel use?

Somehow, the world would have to replace the equivalent of the energy contained within 2.4 Ultra Massive crude ships.  Every. Single. Day.  For 11,000 days straight, without missing a single day.  A 7,000 mile long cargo train of ultra massive ships retired at the rate of 2.4 per day for the next 30 years.

What would that take?  Again from Pilke:

So the math here is simple: to achieve net-zero carbon dioxide emissions by 2050, the world would need to deploy 3 [brand new] nuclear plants worth of carbon-free energy every two days, starting tomorrow and continuing to 2050. At the same time, a nuclear plant’s worth of fossil fuels would need to be decommissioned every day, starting tomorrow and continuing to 2050.

I’ve found that some people don’t like the use of a nuclear power plant as a measuring stick. So we can substitute wind energy as a measuring stick. Net-zero carbon dioxide by 2050 would require the deployment of ~1500 wind turbines (2.5 MW) over ~300 square miles, every day starting tomorrow and continuing to 2050.

So to dismantle that 7,000 mile long conga-line of ultra massive crude carriers, we’d have to build and commission 3 new nuclear plants every 2 days.  Or 1,500 very large wind towers installed across 300 square miles every day.

It’s just not going to happen.

Even if the world got totally, completely serious about doing this, it remains an exceedingly improbable task.  That’s being kind, too.  When something strays this far over the line of improbability, it’s really an impossibility.

Oh, and I started writing this article on Tuesday. Since it’s now Friday, that means we’re already behind by 9 nuclear plants.  We’ll need to hurry to catch those up.

But maybe you’re still holding out hope. If all the countries of the world suddenly made this their #1 priority, could we have a shot?

This brings us to complicating factor #2: human behavior.

Human Behavior

One huge reason that an easy, seamless transition to alternative energy won’t happen is because our biological wiring is terrible at responding to such big, complex, long-range predicaments.

A snarling saber-toothed tiger crouching right in front of us?  That we know how to respond to.  Filling our bellies from a ripe fruit tree to sate our hunger?  We’re absolutely wired for solving problems like that.

But organizing ourselves against a faceless distant threat? Not in our wiring.  Trying to convince people to make sacrifices today for no immediate or visible reward?  Really not at all in our biological wheelhouse.

When united towards a common goal, humans can do amazing things.  Simply brilliant and astonishing works exist that inform us of what’s possible when we set our collective minds to a shared mission.  The great pyramids. Towering middle-age cathedrals. The Great Wall of China. The Apollo missions.

But far less is possible when we’re fractured and divided. As we are now.  We’re currently having trouble trying to agree on which gender(s) should use a particular bathroom. Or being civil when standing in line for a discounted TV.

Given this, it’s impossible to imagine the increasingly-divided populations in the UK, France, America or Germany agreeing on much of anything, let alone a gigantic and massively expensive energy transition.

Each country is currently struggling with its own brew of domestic social and political problems (of their own making, I should add). None really has the appetite or the ability to take on the much more challenging task of a 30-year global energy infrastructure re-build.

Making this energy transition will require an enormous diversion of effort – away from this and towards that.

It will be hard.  It will take a lot of political capital and expert leadership.  Huge pain and suffering will result as entire industries are shut down and new ones are started up.

Just drive through any former mill or mining region and you can still see the bitter remnants of its abandoned industries.  Some have not yet recovered, even hundreds of years after the initial loss.

When the coal mines died out, so did the cities:

Centralia PA

When the mills left, so did the vitality.

Lowell MA

(Source)

With an energy transition away from fossil fuels, there will be similar examples of ruined economic ideas littering the land.  Places where refineries now stand with their thousands of jobs will become rusting derelicts.  Ditto for hundreds of other dependent businesses, ranging from Jiffy Lube to Boeing to gas stations to airports.

Which brings us to complicating factor #3: time, scale and cost

Time, Scale and Cost

Suppose for a moment that we did decide This is it!, and began building 3 nuclear plants per day in earnest.

First: how much would that cost?  Who would pay for it?

Second: are there enough skilled workers and manufacturing facilities to make and install all of the components?

Third: even after these nuclear plants were all up and running, is there even enough Uranium in the world to fuel the eventual 16,500 new, additional plants?

The answer to each of these questions is some form of “no, that isn’t really possible.”

In the third case, the entire amount of all known Uranium reserves are only currently sufficient to supply the existing ~400 reactors in the world of 90 years.

If we expanded the number of reactors by a factor of 41 (16,500/400), that 90 years of supply shrinks to just a bit over 2 years.  Nobody is going to build a nuclear plant with just 2 years of Uranium around to supply it. (that said, I am a fan of researching the use and installation of Thorium reactors, which I’ve explored before)

Similar supply constraints arise if we calculate out the amount of resources required to build the amount of wind towers or solar panels that could replace these nuclear plants.  The costs are staggering, the global resources too limited.  There aren’t enough new hydro dam sites to even make a dent.

Also complicating things, each of these so-called alternative energy systems requires a huge amount of fossil fuels to mine, manufacture, install and maintain. The world has yet to see a single windmill or solar panel that was mined, manufactured and installed without using fossil energy.

The Vision We Need

The answer to the post-fossil fuel era is not an alt-energy system capable of providing us with the same way of life. Because that’s just not feasible.

The answer lies in doing more with less.

We already know how to build structures that will last for hundreds of years and which require almost no energy to operate for heating and cooling.  But those are very rarely built today, because they cost more.

We already know how to build small, light vehicles and operate mass transit very energy effectively. But society prefers its huge cars and trucks, because they’re affordable (while debt is cheap) and convenient.

We already know how to grow more food, closer to home, that is far healthier for humans and the ecosystem. But it’s still only done on a boutique basis because it costs a little bit more.

This is why people need to be told the truth and inspired with a vision that we can all share.  With a grand cause, anything is possible. Without one, nothing will be done.

The vision we need will align what needs to be done with proper incentives to get those things done. We’ll be told the truth, what is expected, and our role in the project.  It will imbue many lives with a sense of meaning and purpose that are currently missing in the lives of most people.

However,  given the enormity of the challenge, and the fractured, divisive social and political landscape, you really need to plan for nothing happening. That no vision is coming along, no savior will appear, and that we’re going to merrily continue along until we run out of time and resources to do anything more than regret our mistakes.

Odds are we’re going to keep heading straight along our current trajectory. Until — clunk! — we go right over the edge.

Conclusion

Given the math, human tendencies, and the issues pertaining to time, scale and cost, the current green energy movement currently is little more than hot air. It’s just not going to happen in time.

We’re nowhere close to being able to build out the massive energy projects required. The equivalent of 3 nuclear plants every two days for the next 30 years? That’s a total pipe dream.

We lack the political will, the cultural readiness, the proper narrative. Even the appropriate resources.

Beyond those concerns, nearly everything about how we heat, move, cool and manufacture the components of our modern lives will have to be refashioned (and possibly jettisoned) as part of that project.

Such an ambitious undertaking has no historical analog.  It’s a ridiculously complex set of problems (which have solutions) and predicaments (which don’t).  It’s exactly the sort of situation that politicians will avoid as long as possible, after which it will be too late to do very much about it.

Which means you need to adjust your expectations and investment of your money and energy, accordingly. The entire world — which is utterly dependent on infinite growth — is only years away from grasping the impossibility of that approach.  When it does, everything will change. Quickly.

This is why Peak Prosperity spends so much time and effort alerting people to these realities, and then helping them take informed individual actions that align with the future we all see (or feel) coming.

In Part 2: Reality Shock we examine the most compelling evidence I know of for why taking matters into our own hands is so important now. It explains everything from slowing global economic growth, to the widening wealth gap, to the rising rejection of globalization and the increasingly desperate mad dash (at any cost) for what remains of natural resources.

Humanity is in the early innings of a great transition.  Losing access to abundant energy will change things more than you or I can appreciate at this time.

This future is barreling towards us at a furious — and accelerating — pace. Get prepared.

Click here to read Part 2 of this report (free executive summary, enrollment required for full access).

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101 Comments

  • Fri, Oct 04, 2019 - 5:27pm

    #1

    thc0655

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 27 2010

    Posts: 1538

    3+

    No one’s coming to save us

    Sticker – No One Is Coming

    Surely “someone” is going to invent tabletop cold fusion that costs $999.99 (4 easy payments) which will power your house and electric car for a year on two gallons of tap water as fuel. 🙄

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  • Fri, Oct 04, 2019 - 6:14pm

    #2
    Crapper

    Crapper

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    Posts: 13

    6+

    They're doomed... but YOU can grab a survival property for free!

    Brilliant post. You hit the nail on the head when concluding “It’s time to freak out a bit.” That’s why I studied Dark Ages, famines… and all things “Doom and Gloom!”. I personally went through the four stages of grief: (a) Whoah… we’re in serious poop (b) Hey, no one else is getting prepared  (c) I’ll grab the best resources while the goings good and (d) get the beers and popcorn ready for the show… and laugh at the 90% dying in their own stupidity while Crapper and his Harem special friends and close mates set themselves up for the new warlords of the local fiefdom.

    This civilisation is doomed. Forget about “the science is settled” crap. The decision has been made…  and it’s “do nothing about everything”.

    Hint to all the Warmists on this site: when you want people to listen to you then don’t insult them as “Deniers”. In the voting booth your political party gets thumped in the eye (ie as the Labor party in Queensland, Australia found out in their recent election). When people sincerely hold a different opinion to you then it’s YOU who has to offer a strong argument for them to change their mind. Saying “The science is settled” when it clearly isn’t if solar and planetary cycles are considered is just intellectual arrogance. Did you know that 97% of scientists believe that holding the wrong political position on Global Warming will destroy their careers? (I just wanted to put that “97%…” myth in perspective).

    Back to our Doom. We’re too far gone down this blind ally for it to turn up peaches and cream. Death, violence and starvation are guests at every civilisation’s last hoorah. But Crapper doesn’t like to post without giving some good advice, so here it is:

    Look for a great survival property that would serve well in an “end of the world” scenario. Ensure that it’s in an area populated by people who racially resemble you but not the owner: if you’re white and live in USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand etc, then rent from someone Chinese. If you’re Hispanic, rent off a wealthy white person in South America. When the SHTF occurs, shoot the owners when they come to visit the property. Now it belongs to you! That’s the new rules for the Dark Age. And you’ll thank Crapper for getting you and your family a “Get out of Jail” card for free when the Four Horsemen ride into town.

    When old civilisations die, chaos reigns. You only own what you can protect. And being a member of the local tribe will be paramount in who is allowed to own what. Good grief… for someone who posts such great comments and advice I’m sure low on the “thumb up” scores. But hey, he who laughs last, laughs longest… and the Decent and coming Dark Age will out-last the life of every person reading this post.

     

     

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  • Fri, Oct 04, 2019 - 7:05pm

    #3

    Mots

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 18 2012

    Posts: 86

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    narrow minded

    This essay states a focus on the problem of “the world transitioning gently to an alternative.”  This is misleading doom  porn.  I think that you need to be more honest/accurate by stating your focus is on the inability of “the American way of life transitioning gently…”  The majority of the “world” is now already at a perhaps 10x lower energy level than that of the narcissistic, over-fed Americans and actually, are increasing their quality of life due to renewables.  Their future looks brighter due to renewable energies and they are going for it.  This is the real world.  That is, the real “world” (in contrast to the minority of over-privileged Americans) will have a better future than what they have now, due to renewables.  We see this in Africa and other 3rd world countries where night time lighting and cell phone charging is raising standard of living due to very low resource inputs courtesy of renewables.

    I just returned from a trip to Nepal, where more than 95% of the electricity is renewable and most of the people have it, while the government and utilities (while well known as corrupt) are expanding service and exporting their renewable energy.  Their use of energy is increasing and their quality of life is increasing.  Similar stories can be said for more than half of the planet and contradicts this lament of the passing of an unreasonable American lifestyle.  Most people on the planet do not drive to big stores in big cars for entertainment and relaxation and do not live in isolated McMansions separated by long roads.  Lessons can be learned from these other countries.  Why not pay attention to what the majority of the people on the planet are doing.

    Two observations lead me to think that this more representative country (Nepal) of “the world” will get to a better future before the Americans do.  One, everyone I asked about family, said that they only have 1 or 2 children.  I am sure that there must be 3+ children families somewhere but I did not see them.  Two, when I asked people what they do for fun on the weekends, no one said go shopping or go driving.  All said that they enjoy being with family and relatives for free time relaxation.

    The American constant focus on buying and driving more, more and more, and keeping the more shopping and driving game up is not an indicator of the good life.  Instead of lamenting the inability to burn gasoline to drive a 150 kilowatt motor driven 1.5 ton machine to the store for endless shopping of stuff (in turn provided by endless amounts of diesel and gasoline transportation) that is not needed, it might be better to focus on the real world that in some ways will be improved over the materialistic, cold, isolated crazy and unsustainable American life style.  Americans need to let it go.

     

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  • Fri, Oct 04, 2019 - 7:50pm

    Reply to #3
    Crapper

    Crapper

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    Joined: Jun 01 2019

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    Mots is the one being "narrow minded"

    Hey Mots, it’s you’re who’s being “narrow minded”. You make sweeping statements that are blatantly untrue; so many in fact that I will draw attention to the fact that the bedrock of your assumptions comes from this sweeping garbage:

    “… The majority of the “world” is now already at a perhaps 10x lower energy level than that of the narcissistic, over-fed Americans and actually, are increasing their quality of life due to renewables.”

    You obviously didn’t include Europe and Japan in your “rest of the world”. You obviously ignored that world oil consumption (ex-USA) is going UP, not down. The fact is that the rest of the world happens to be human and part of their human nature is to increase their standard of living which will include consuming more oil and living in bigger houses (aka the American dream: “… constant focus on buying and driving more”). I don’t live in the USA (or Canada) but my BS detector (always set on hyper sensitive when reading posts on this site) began howling off the scale when I read your “anti-American” drivel. You’re just like Greta Thunberg … condemned everyone on emissions but the Chinese… it didn’t fit her narrative.

    Controversial ideas are tolerated on this site (kudos to PP), but you let rip with vitriolicly loaded BS which is typical of someone willfully blind. The Nepalese, like every other race on earth, are desperate for the American lifestyle… but Chris’s argument is that renewables just cannot deliver it. We’re all doomed… including almost every third world country because they rely on petrochemical produced food imports… like the Nepalese! All national populations exploded beyond carrying capacity… the greatest catastrophe ahead will correct it.

     

     

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  • Fri, Oct 04, 2019 - 8:52pm

    #4

    davefairtex

    Status Diamond Member (Offline)

    Joined: Sep 03 2008

    Posts: 3227

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    life in nepal

    Mots-

    I’ve been to Nepal also.  Fine place, really kind people, at least from what I saw.

    But.  My issue is that Nepal couldn’t possibly come up with the technology to implement all those renewables.  Their society just isn’t complicated enough.  All their tech comes from somewhere else.  (Heck, their “high end food” comes from Thailand).  My sense is that it took a wasteful crazy society like America to invent all this stuff, and my concern is that if that complexity goes away, and we all become “like Nepal”, then the underpinnings of our renewable tech will also vanish – along with any hope of improvement of said tech.

    That said, I spend a fair amount of my time in the developing world, so I agree that people can get by with a whole lot less.  That 110 cc scooter can actually work as “the family car” as long as the police are flexible about helmet laws and overloading the poor scooter.  It also has to be culturally ok for the 5-year-old to be standing on the running board, grasping the handlebars, while Dad pilots the scooter on the side streets.  Most Americans – who think their child must be taken to school in the 2-ton SUV or else they are terrible parents – would be horrified at such a sight.

    Most places around the world operate on a far slimmer energy budget.  And their lives really aren’t all that horrible.

    But I think Nepal is closer to the bottom than the average.

    It takes places like America to construct tech so that places like Nepal can improve.  How much tech innovation occurred as a direct result of the surplus energy provided by fossil fuels?  And will that tech innovation continue if that surplus vanishes?

    Yes.  Here’s the real point.  Ag used to take 60% of our effort.  Now, its 2%.  That freed up the population to do things like improve tech rapidly.  If we go back to 60% Ag effort – we probably lose that tech innovation ability.

    As I said before, if we all become “slightly better than Nepal” – tech goes away.

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  • Fri, Oct 04, 2019 - 9:22pm

    Reply to #3
    ao

    ao

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 04 2009

    Posts: 964

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    life in Nepal

    My son spent 27 months in Nepal in the Peace Corps, was there during the earthquake, and also spent additional time trekking in the Himalayas after his stint in the Peace Corps.  Wonderful people and a beautiful country but pollution is terrible, solid waste disposal is horrendous, the transportation system is tenuous, the electrical system is primitive, the reliability of the renewables is highly questionable (in terms of quality of construction, monsoons, earthquakes, etc.), etc.   Google “electric wires in Nepal” and you get a sense of just some of the problems.  I don’t know if I’d hold them up as such a great example.

    In my travels, I’ve found Germany to be one of the countries that is the most progressive in its use of renewables.

     

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  • Fri, Oct 04, 2019 - 10:34pm

    Reply to #3

    davefairtex

    Status Diamond Member (Offline)

    Joined: Sep 03 2008

    Posts: 3227

    4+

    tenuous transportation

    I’m going to agree with that “tenuous transportation” observation, although my time in Nepal was limited.

    When I was at the airport in Pokhara waiting for my flight (PKR-KMT), I saw the (twin engined prop) plane that I was due to board land, and then taxi to the gate area.  As it got closer, I noticed it only had one prop spinning.  Curious, I thought, maybe that’s some sort of local trick to save fuel.

    No.  Turns out, the other engine had failed – the plane landed with just a single working engine.  They had to fly in a tech from Katmandu to fix it.  My outbound flight was delayed until a working aircraft arrived.  To my relief, this one landed with two props spinning.

    And I have to say, the view out the window of that flight was just spectacular.

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  • Fri, Oct 04, 2019 - 10:44pm

    #5

    LesPhelps

    Status Silver Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 30 2009

    Posts: 487

    7+

    Potato Harvest

    This is the second year I’ve participated in the potato harvest in Central Wisconsin.  Here is a video I took this evening.  The bin in the video was empty when my team started this morning.

    My team today included three tractors, a windrower, a harvester, seven potato trucks, three dump trucks and an elaborate portable conveyor system.

    As Chris is fond of mentioning, there is a lot of energy involved in current farming practices.  My team today was just under 20 people and we harvested and binned perhaps 5 million pounds of potatoes in about 14 hours.

    When diesel fuel is no more, potato chips and french fries are going to be a lot harder to come by and a lot more expensive.

     

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  • Fri, Oct 04, 2019 - 10:57pm

    Reply to #3

    Mots

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 18 2012

    Posts: 86

    3+

    need to get off 'Merica centric thinking

    Crapper thanks for taking the time to respond.  My main point is that Ameri-centric thinking is not necessarily the way forward and is misleading.  Regarding facts, America, Japan and Western Europe account for only 8.8% of the worlds population and more than 50% of the earth’s population lives with much less (<10% the energy) yet is improving their life style due to renewables.  You called me anti-American without addressing my main point and said that everything I said was false.  I considered your response (somehow I had failed to consider Europe and Japan and therefore I am wrong) and don’t agree.

    It seems anti American to point out facts that do not comport with America uber alles, but here are some facts:  Most of the equipment/machines/technology in Nepal is from India, and much of the rest from China with some from Japan,  NOT significantly from America or Europe.  It is doubtful that 3rd world countries really need American cell phone apps that much or need new US banking software and new US derivative drugs that differ in minor ways from existing drugs but that provide excuses to force doctors to prescribe exorbitant priced drugs that basically work as old ones.

    America was number one in technology for many years but those days have passed. Saying this does not mean that I hate America.   Technology, wealth and the future have passed onto Asia.  OK, so you can say that I hate America for pointing out the truth, but in fact I am sad about it.

    Most technology advances these days (basic electronics, super computers, even biochemistry) comes from China, not from the US, Europe or Japan.  I speak from experience.  If you try to get a patent in electronics power, green energy, most advanced fields, most of the recent prior art that the US government uses to block you from getting a patent is from China and most of the rest is from Asia.  People in the US are living in a dream world.  This is a fact but you use my comments to say that I hate America.  I am just pointing out that the dream is over.  The fact that others in the world still believe in the suburban US dream based on movies does not justify the dying lifestyle or create a validity.  Time to move on and recognize the facts of an ascendant Asia and of a majority of the world that is improving its lifestyle with renewables.   The vast majority of those renewables are designed, researched and manufactured overseas and most of the advances (and benefits) are happening there.

    My other main point was that a large proportion of the world (represented by Nepal) is greatly improving its lifestyle, to a large extent due to renewables.  You said that my facts were wrong and instead any improvement is due to the great American technology.  But inspection of the technology and machines shows that they were invented and manufactured mostly in India and to a smaller extent in China and Japan.  I was surprised by how much the people there have improved their lives over the last generation or two and merely pointed out that in contrast to the situation complained about re. N America, much if not most of the rest  of the planet is looking to a brighter future, not a worse one.  I think that we can learn from other countries.

     

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  • Sat, Oct 05, 2019 - 12:04am

    #6

    GerrySM

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    Joined: Jun 20 2017

    Posts: 54

    2+

    The maths is simple, the solutions are obvious

    We will use less energy in the future, just like we did hundreds of year ago. We’ve only started using vast amounts of energy in the last hundred years, and especially the last 30 years, but we’ve been around for hundreds of thousands of years. Going back to life in the 18th century would not be so bad, especially with the medicine and technology knowledge we have now. In fact, I’d welcome it. So Poof! there goes your 7,000 mile long line of oil supertankers.

    And yes, there will be fewer people in the future, because less energy lowers the planet’s carrying capacity. Those of us who realize this have already started restricting the number of children we have. Many are opting for no children at all, as is shown in numerous recent news articles, for example:

    https://www.bbc.com/worklife/article/20190920-the-couples-reconsidering-kids-because-of-climate-change

     

     

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  • Sat, Oct 05, 2019 - 12:22am

    Reply to #3
    Crapper

    Crapper

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    Joined: Jun 01 2019

    Posts: 13

    4+

    Mots: do you actually consider what you read?

    Mots, do you actually CONSIDER what other people write before you comment? Chris spent DAYS writing his post, and put forward a solid argument why renewables and oil alternatives cannot save us. You responded with accusing him of being narrow minded (he might well be… but it wasn’t shown in his essay). You then went on to pour vitriol onto Americans:

    “…  narcissistic, over-fed Americans… over-privileged Americans… drive to big stores in big cars for entertainment and relaxation … live in isolated McMansions separated by long roads… to burn gasoline to drive a 150 kilowatt motor driven 1.5 ton machine to the store for endless shopping of stuff… materialistic, cold, isolated crazy and unsustainable American life style. Americans need to let it go.”

    To a thoughtful reader the main thrust of your post could be summed up as expressing contempt for Americans while holding up the rest of the world (especially the developing world) as wonderful eco-orientated societies getting everything right.

    I repeat, I’m not from North America so I don’t have an axe to grind; but I call out BS when I see it.

    Then you respond to my reply and come out with this:

    “You called me anti-American without addressing my main point and said that everything I said was false.”

    Your main point was addressed: your comments were anti-American! You called Chris “narrow minded” after DAYS of thoughtful research backed up with math (note to Chris: I loved your numbers!).

    Just as with the main article, you were then froward with your reply. I never mentioned technology once in my reply post to you. And the fact that most things are no longer made in America is simple: the incompetent and corrupt elites ship manufacturing and innovation to the third world because they are traitors to their own societies. You wrote:

    “Technology, wealth and the future have passed onto Asia”

    Let me correct you: Technology was passed onto Asia by our corrupt elite who by consequence passed on the wealth and future that technology delivers!

    The business I’ve built over decades is automation engineering… this is one area in which I know my stuff! Everything Chris wrote stands. Technology won’t save us! This civilisation, including the developing world which is seeking the American lifestyle (and not eco-nirvana) is doomed!

     

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  • Sat, Oct 05, 2019 - 5:39am

    Reply to #1

    Robinson

    Status Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 26

    we agree, we need to take action now.

    It’s time to take action and fight these elite conspiracies if we want to be free. here the plan: https://www.patreon.com/Mutuo

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  • Sat, Oct 05, 2019 - 6:34am

    #7

    davefairtex

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    Posts: 3227

    12+

    crapper: your delivery sucks

    My opinion: Crapper, your delivery sucks.  I really wish you would just go away.  I mean, I disagree with Mots in some areas, but … I’m happy to have him here.

    You, not so much.

    Just my opinion.

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  • Sat, Oct 05, 2019 - 6:45am

    #8
    ecb

    ecb

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    Posts: 21

    5+

    The east is winning?

    The “miracle” in China is largely due to technology they have managed to steal  from us over the last 40 years and we have had our head in the sand making it easy for them. Just look at who  is in the high tech labs of our universities.

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  • Sat, Oct 05, 2019 - 8:42am

    #9

    LesPhelps

    Status Silver Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 30 2009

    Posts: 487

    3+

    Wisconsin Hybrid Vehicle Surcharge

    I just paid my yearly auto registration, in Wisconsin, for my wife’s hybrid.  There is a new $75 per year surcharge for hybrids in the state.  Talk about absurd laws.

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  • Sat, Oct 05, 2019 - 9:02am

    #10

    sand_puppy

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 1971

    8+

    We will be more like the Nepalese

    Probably the point that Chris, GerrySM, Crapper, DaveF and Mots all agree on is that life in America and Europe will become much more like life in Nepal–lower tech, less “luxury.”

    But, where the Nepalese do the lower standard life gracefully emphasizing the wonderful human aspects of a simpler life (since it is a part of their culture and long history), first world countries will drop standard of living with a bang and react in fury and fear.

    Things will be ugly and chaotic as the new low-energy reality is forced upon first world nations.

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  • Sat, Oct 05, 2019 - 9:51am

    Reply to #10

    ckessel

    Status Silver Member (Offline)

    Joined: Nov 12 2008

    Posts: 170

    4+

    When the 8+ percent of the population (US, EU and Japan) have to live with less expect a lot of whining and sniveling about how unfair it all is. My concern is that the elite would then use the angst to whip up the winds of war to get ‘our share’ back.

    There is nothing new in that playbook. But as duly noted on this site, those in less ‘advanced’ societies such as Nepal do not have as far to fall and at a glance, seem much more humble about the predicament that us ‘westerners’.

    I like the idea of choosing a less energy intensive lifestyle as a baseline. That alone is a huge challenge but it is doable.

    Coop

     

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  • Sat, Oct 05, 2019 - 11:55am

    Reply to #9
    richcabot

    richcabot

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    Posts: 210

    1+

    Wisconsin Hybrid Vehicle Surcharge

    It may be counterproductive to hybrid adoption but it’s a recognition of the fact that they don’t pay as much in gasoline tax and therefore don’t support the roads at the same rate as fossil fuel powered cars.

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  • Sat, Oct 05, 2019 - 12:09pm

    Reply to #10
    richcabot

    richcabot

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    Posts: 210

    4+

    War is probably inevitable

    I’m sure the war in Iraq was motivated in large part by getting access to their oil (also by Saddam’s insistence on being paid in Euros).  When fuel prices skyrocket I wouldn’t bet on the average American being egalitarian about the problem.  Taking oil from other countries like Venezuela and Iran through force will be an easy sell to a large portion of the American electorate.  The elites of the Western world understand where things are going and are doing what they can to get both of those countries under our thumb.  They claim it’s about stopping socialism in Venezuela or stopping Iran sponsored terrorism but it’s not.  It’s about getting guaranteed access to their oil.

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  • Sat, Oct 05, 2019 - 2:57pm

    Reply to #7
    Crapper

    Crapper

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    2+

    davefairtex: toughen up princess!

    So davefairtex you say “your delivery sucks. I really wish you would just go away”. Really? Is that it? Because my “delivery sucks” to your sensitivities you’d wish I’d go away??? Lol! Are you some kind of dweeb? We’re discussing a catastrophe of biblical proportions and you’re getting upset about delivery? Ha!

    Here’s some advice cupcake…. don’t read my posts.

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  • Sat, Oct 05, 2019 - 3:26pm

    #11
    Rodster

    Rodster

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    Re: Crapper's Delivery

    Some may not like Crapper’s delivery but his message is “spot on” because in a nutshell he/she described America. If anyone here has read Gail Tverberg’s writings on her website http://ourfiniteworld.com She paints a pessimistic view on how the world will look with less energy. Our population has grown exponentially with fossil fuels and it will go in the opposite direction as we hit energy decline.

    To make matters worse, if we do enter a new “dark age” who’s going to know how to maintain all the high tech stuff like nuclear power plants or how to maintain all those spent fuel rods? The Japanese have the people and capacity and Fukushima is still not under control. They are now considering dumping nuclear waste water into the Pacific Ocean because they are running out of room at the waste site.

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  • Sat, Oct 05, 2019 - 4:45pm

    Reply to #7

    davefairtex

    Status Diamond Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 3227

    10+

    crapper's devals

    Crapper – the thing I object to is not the points you make, but your underlying goal.  In the past, and here once again, you appear to come to our community with the goal of devaluing as many people as possible in order to get your jollies, under the cover of making commentary.  I find such behavior community-destroying, and that’s why I don’t like it.  Or you.

    You have no idea if I’m tough or not.  You really don’t.  I just find you offensive, and unnecessarily so.

    Rodster- the thing is, I agree with about 50% of what he says, but he’s really not here to make commentary.  He’s here to win points and hurt as many people as possible.  And people like him won’t be an asset in the long run.  Or even the short run.  And FWIW I agree with the other points you make too – about tech, Fukushima, nuke plants, etc.  And you manage to make your points and be reasonable about it.  Nobody is convinced through assault & battery.  Civil discourse, on the other hand, has a chance of working.

    That’s what I’m in favor of.  Civil discourse.  You build a community that way, and allow people with different viewpoints to co-exist and communicate within that community.  The “assault & battery” style of discourse only allows one viewpoint to exist, and if PP was like that, I wouldn’t be here.

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  • Sat, Oct 05, 2019 - 5:14pm

    Reply to #10

    davefairtex

    Status Diamond Member (Offline)

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    2+

    war inevitable

    richcabot-

    I used to think this too, before the enthusiasm for “climate change” took center stage.  Now?  If the Blue Church gets its way, using fossil fuels will be seen as socially reprehensible (except, of course, for our leadership and their private jets, helicopters, and mega yachts).  There will be no wars for fossil fuels simply because Blue Church has made it socially unacceptable to use said fuel.  “You are destroying the planet!”  That defangs the push (at least from a big chunk of society) for the evil fossil fuels.

    Phone addiction makes it so people don’t want to actually do anything or go anywhere.  Wearable VR will make this situation even more pronounced.  Uber makes it so nobody really wants to buy a car anymore.  (Electric, self-driving uber will be even more compelling – you can use your phone while driving! – and conversion of the uber fleet will be much more rapid, and lower cost, than converting all those 150m POVs).

    I mean, if this wasn’t planned, it is the most fortuitous series of accidents all leading to a drop in FF consumption in western society.

    “Climate change” has given me some hope for the conversion.  I just wish they weren’t using it as an excuse for imposing all the other (vastly more expensive) social programs.

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  • Sat, Oct 05, 2019 - 7:58pm

    #12
    Uncletommy

    Uncletommy

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    Posts: 527

    There are folks out there who have thought this through!

    Call him what you think, but the equation still sums to zero. The question remains,”will we be around to see it”.

    https://www.ted.com/talks/bill_gates/transcript?language=en

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  • Sat, Oct 05, 2019 - 9:13pm

    #13

    GerrySM

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    Posts: 54

    3+

    A comment on climate, Tverberg etc

    Some may not like Crapper’s delivery but his message is “spot on” because in a nutshell he/she described America. If anyone here has read Gail Tverberg’s writings on her website http://ourfiniteworld.com She paints a pessimistic view on how the world will look with less energy. Our population has grown exponentially with fossil fuels and it will go in the opposite direction as we hit energy decline

    Couple points:

    1. Tverberg was a disbeliever in climate science for many years. These days she does not deny global heating, but simply ignores it. But she works in close cooperation with an oil industry consultant, Euan Mearns, who is a denier. So draw your own conclusions there. Everything the 80+ year old Tverberg writes tends to play up how supposedly useless renewables are, and how much we simply have to keep on using fossil fuels.
    2. “Crapper” (perfect name) has all the hallmarks of a professional troll employed by the fossil fuel industries via public relations firms that specialise in commenting on the internet in a way designed to suppress discussion of global heating.

    To this day, shills, trolls and charlatans, some paid by the fossil fuel lobby (particularly via the evil machinations of big oil and coal, such as the Koch brothers and their media pals, particularly Murdoch, Gina Rinehart in Australia and her media puppet Andrew Bolt, and just some useful right-leaning volunteer idiots), continue to deny the evidence in front of their own noses, so deep are their snouts embedded in the collective denier lobby trough.

    It’s true that climate change mitigation would probably require most of these:

    1. International cooperation
    2. A move away from pure capitalism to a steady state economy
    3. Government regulation
    4. Payment for the changes (read taxes)
    5. Population control (arguable)

    Getting right wingers to sign up for any of these is extremely difficult. Which could mean that we’re screwed. The stupid, it hurts, and it will hurt even more in time…..

     

    Wild fires, dying lakes, landslides, hurricanes,
    apocalypse in store, like nothing ever seen before.
    It’s a-coming.

    Third-generation refugees, street mob burning effigies,
    revolution, civil war, like nothing ever seen before.
    It’s a comin’

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  • Sat, Oct 05, 2019 - 9:29pm

    Reply to #10

    Mots

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 18 2012

    Posts: 86

    2+

    use less energy: deal with it

    my point was that most of the world survives and enjoys a life based on less energy than N Americans, Western Europe (and even Japan which uses half the energy of the US) do now. Lets look at what they are doing.
    We can examine what others are doing and how they are benefiting from their increasing reliance on “renewable” energy.  These other countries are not feeding on and are not relying on advanced American technology, which except for internet tricks, cell phone apps and tricks in pharmaceutical modifications generally does not exist anyway. (my basic point of last posting)
    I discovered that the lower quality of renewable energy provided in Nepal was ameliorated by a company (seems to be Korean) that is taking over the refrigerator market with DC compressor technology, which can work on a wide range of voltages and deal with the lower quality electricity.

    This is my private energy focus: in my case, I plan to introduce into Nepal low tech solutions that provide solar electric cooking (during rain/cloudy conditions) and air conditioners/fridges that are at least 2x the EROI of existing, based on a new next generation electricity (pulsing DC) that I discovered.  (I run air conditioners now virtually directly from solar panels without need for expensive inverters or batteries and I make coffee and cook food during rainy conditions because I harvest almost 100% of energy from very cheap solar panels using very little infrastructure).

    Really new technology violates rules and laws of established “mature” countries such as the U.S. and this is the reason why new stuff will likely come from 2nd or 3rd world countries.  This is also why I have to focus my efforts on my own off grid dwelling in the rural area (where freedom abounds) and in independent tiny houses (my next project for the US and Japan) which avoids convention.  If you study the patents coming out, you will see that the US is dominated by banking trickery patents, internet trickery patents (designed to make you log on and pay someone before using software that you already paid for, for example) and pharmaceutical trickery patents (add a methyl group to a well used drug, study and try to find some kind of difference to argue about and make doctors prescribe it to avoid generics).

    I saw renewable technology (commercialized by Koreans) in Nepal that simply is not available in Japan or the US.  While acknowledging that “new technology!’ will not prevent the collapse of the American lifestyle, if we are a little humble, we can learn something from those who are already there to help us muddle through.  It is not helpful to look down on these other people (actually the majority of the earth) because they do not steal resources (via a banking and military system) from the rest of the planet in an unsustainable, extravagant energy lifestyle.

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  • Sat, Oct 05, 2019 - 9:45pm

    Reply to #3

    timeandtide

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    Posts: 45

    A way forward

    You make very good points Mots. It will be difficult, particularly for those in cities in both the first world and the less developed world. How does the first world transition without violence?

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  • Sat, Oct 05, 2019 - 10:20pm

    #14

    timeandtide

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    Posts: 45

    1+

    The irony of energy

    All the extraordinary technology we have today has come about primarily because of the way we have leveraged fossil fuels. We have done this so successfully that we have almost used them up without finding a long term replacement. The only obvious one is nuclear fusion. If we do manage to crack that over the next 30 years we are still left with the problem of replacement and deployment.

    The sort of money and economy required to have a surplus to spend on very expensive technology will require  us to continue using fossil fuels until they run out. At the moment, we seem to be set on sending people to the Moon again and Mars. We are clearly going to have to prioritise which means getting the politicians to stop playing silly partisan games.

    I have no idea whether humans are responsible for global warming or not. Common sense suggests that we have definitely played our part. However, we are in such a pickle now that trying to stop the use of fossil fuels when we have nothing meaningful to replace them with would be foolish. If we want to develop an alternative form of energy such as nuclear fusion and have the economic wherewithal to deploy it if we are successful in getting more energy out of fusion that what we put in, then we have to keep going with a 21st century economy. However, there are many ways that a 21st century economy could be run. At the moment so much of the “profit” is not real but a conjuring trick because we do not measure the externalities like pollution. Why do we make so many things with built in obsolescence? Surely we can create an economy that is not so in thrall to rampant consumerism? Why have we pushed farmers to the limits on costs just so supermarkets can sell cheaper food. Food which is so cheap that we have no respect for it and consequently waste so much of it, not to mention the health problems of obesity and diabetes from over-consumption. Fuel is way too cheap in the United States. Fuel for discretionary use should be taxed heavily so that it is not wasted because the farmers have a more crucial need for it. We have no option but to prioritise and yet most politicians and the central bankers are still calling for more thoughtless growth and trying to stimulate inflation of all things. We can do better.

    Whichever way you look at it, the first world is looking at a massive change to the way we live. There are probably too many of us. Thomas Malthus was actually correct, we find ways to produce more and always consume all of it to the point of collapse.

    The worst scenario can probably be avoided but the wealthy  are going to have to “contribute” more to keep the technological show on the road. (I don’t mean just wealthy people but the staggeringly wealthy corporations who do their utmost to avoid paying taxes).

    Part of the problem now is that wealth is being hoarded despite the trillions that have been “created” in little more than a decade. We need to understand the difference between real wealth and that which comes by way of our so-called reserve banking systems.

    We really have a lot to do and we will not get anywhere if we continue to bicker and squabble.

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  • Sat, Oct 05, 2019 - 11:02pm

    Reply to #3

    Mots

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 18 2012

    Posts: 86

    3+

    muddle

    T&T thank you for your thoughts…….. ……. based partly on conversations at John Michael Greer’s website ecosophia.net (great related discussions there) I expect that the large cities will muddle through.  Italy still exists long after Rome fell, individuals do their best under trying circumstances.  So big deal, the US “lifestyle” defined as energy per person will drop a lot, maybe 3 or 4 fold or more.  Cities will have stronger police, and a 100 perfect surveillance stage and people there will adjust, not by revolution but instead by not having families, more youtube escapism, more suicide, and will muddle through I think.

    But for those interested in peak prosperity, clearly we have to “run away, run away” in my opinion. This blogsite has some advice on the latter……..
    My personal interest is in exploring ways to greatly increase EROI of renewable energy.  This is not hard to do because the existing system is based on inefficient and dangerous 100 year old technology which requires extremely complicated and expensive and breakage prone equipment.  Without wishing to, I ended up inventing, designing and building all of my own equipment based on a next generation electricity which I call “interrupted DC.”   I run air conditioners (and cooking equipment) bought off the shelf, and almost directly connected to solar panels.  But such innovations which violate existing regulatory custom and require minor lifestyle changes are not allowed in a mature country such as the US so I have to practice higher EROI in my rural situation and in 3rd world countries.  The nexus of new advances in human living will not come from NY, Washington DC, Tokyo, London etc.  The people there will live a life of increasingly quiet desperation, under constant surveillance.  The rural areas of depopulating countries such as Japan are very refreshing in comparison.  We welcome foreigners who are not afraid to get their hands dirty, like to work, and prefer a life of no guns and drugs.

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  • Sun, Oct 06, 2019 - 12:46am

    #15

    davefairtex

    Status Diamond Member (Offline)

    Joined: Sep 03 2008

    Posts: 3227

    2+

    great stuff

    Wow those are some great posts guys.  I especially like Mots and his DC equipment – now I remember your previous posts on the subject – sadly I’m a software guy, and I mentally consign all such things involving actual molecules to a “hardware” bin that I try studiously to avoid actually dealing with. 🙂  Kidding!  Well, maybe 50% kidding.

    But your concepts are fantastic, and I can see why your inventions work great in the third world, but not-so-great in the developed world where generation has long been centralized and energy prices have been (relatively) cheap for a century or more.

    Centralized generation helps centralized control too.  Interesting, that.

    That said – there is a revolution in software that started in the US – and is still largely owned by the US – that may not be on your radar as much as it is on mine.  The AI revolution is really remarkable, and it has happened just in the past 6 years.  As one guy in a room by myself, I can build real AI applications that can solve some pretty amazing problems with maybe $3000 in parts.  (Yes, sadly, they are hardware parts.  But it turns out, I am able to put a pair of GPUs in a case and attach PCIE power cables.  Yay).  So I still think the US is “not dead yet” in the tech field.  Did I mention just how remarkable the jump in AI is?  It ranks up there with “free software” in terms of a game-changing innovation.  And free software is another US invention, btw, and we still do pretty well in that area also, alongside our friends in Europe.  Call it an “invention of the West” which I claim would only happen in the culture of the West.  Can you imagine the “free software” phenomenon emerging in China?  I can’t.

    Literally all of my software tools are free software.  All of them.  The operating system, the compilers, the interpreters, and even tensorflow: free software.  My desktop is OSX, but I just use that as a window onto a flock of Linux boxes.

    And of course Intel, and Cisco, and NVIDIA, and AMD, and Apple.  They’re all American, and they still kick ass.  And they all leverage free software.  Nobody else is even close.  You want a server?  A router?  American.  (Made in China!  And Taiwan.  Currently.)  Of course, that’s the world I see, so I don’t think America is dead just yet.  Not from my perspective.

    Now that you talk about your products in more detail, I totally understand their revolutionary nature for their target market.

    I still maintain that it probably takes a well-connected mostly-first world economy powered by cheap fossil fuels to keep you supplied with parts, and to keep the innovation train rolling so your parts just keep getting better.

    I’m not sure what that means for the future.

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  • Sun, Oct 06, 2019 - 1:06am

    Reply to #13

    davefairtex

    Status Diamond Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 3227

    3+

    International Cooperation

    GerrySM-

    This is the bit that bothers me: “international cooperation.”  The largest carbon emitter, by a factor of 2, seems really resistant to the concept of “international cooperation.”  That is, they have shown that they are happy to internationally cooperate as long as we follow the rules, and they don’t have to.

    Practically speaking, the whole plan falls dead if the largest carbon emitter in the world (the same size as the US and the EU combined) decides not to go along.  Which if Hong Kong is any indication, they most likely won’t.

    So while we can blame “the right wingers” for the destruction of the planet, there is one entity that emits more carbon than all the MAGA hat wearing right wingers in existence.  You know who they are.  And yet for some reason…like He Who Shall Not Be Named in the Harry Potter universe…nobody talks about them at all.

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  • Sun, Oct 06, 2019 - 2:10am

    Reply to #15

    Mots

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 18 2012

    Posts: 86

    1+

    AI and software

    Can you give a reference to an AI software review article that describes what you are doing?  I am sure that Japan is way behind in that area, but  I note that the Chinese are very innovative and graduate many times more engineers per year.  Their software is not directly competing in the same arena or market (I believe) but instead they have/are building out a completely independent system (bidu, wechat, etc. NO google, facebook, youtube or even peakprosperity.com in China) while they have their own systems and have developed instant facial recognition coupled to traffic ticket generation in some places already).

    Will the real war in the future be between China’s AI and the U.S’s AI?
    Another question I have for you: how big a problem is “garbage in-garbage out”?  The internet is so full of nonsense that it is virtually impossible to find news or even facts.  Isnt AI subject to the limitation that most “facts” are not facts and that gleaning things from the internet is mostly misleading?   I hear anecdotes that many people hired to do big data cant get anything done because the “data” is mostly nonsense or unable to be sorted.  Is data a limitation?

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  • Sun, Oct 06, 2019 - 2:42am

    Reply to #15

    davefairtex

    Status Diamond Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 3227

    2+

    data, articles, AI

    Mots-

    No, there’s no real articles on what I’m doing per se.  I’m just experimenting on my own.  The platform I use is called “tensorflow”; interface language is python, and the GPU is the NVIDIA 1080 TI.  (I actually have several GPUs, but that’s another story).

    Data is always the problem.  Crappy data = crappy results, duh.  🙂  I wrestle with that with my financial data.  Bad feeds are a plague.

    I don’t want to represent AI as the solution to everything, but it is allowing us to attempt to solve problems which simply weren’t solvable before.  Most of these (I think) will just be a matter of time.  Self-driving cars is one area that may well lead to cutting gas usage by some large amount.  Why?  You can program them to hypermile; not out of the gate, but in the event of a shortage, that’s something you could just code up, and then drop right in using an OTA update.  Presto, everyone goes 55, and everyone hypermiles.  Maybe that cuts consumption in half?

    China’s face recognition stuff – that’s all AI.  I’m sure they have scads of people working around the clock to do that.  That’s required for automated social credit and repression.  That’s also what is terrifying the kids in Hong Kong.  Wear a mask during a protest, or your Chinese social credit score drops to below zero thanks to facial recognition.

    But the AI platform they use – I’m guessing – was built here.  By google.  Free software again.

    Drones are “solved” by AI too.  That could get pretty hairy – the hunter-killer drone is not very far from implementation.

    All the training for the AIs are enabled by GPUs built by NVIDIA, or AMD.  Also US companies.  Servers running on CPUs designed by Intel.  US company.  Motherboards designed by – Intel again.  Operating system: Linux.  Free software.  Western product.

    The US isn’t just about phones and facebook.  It may seem that way, but its not.  At least not in my software world anyway.

    The world runs on servers.  And that’s my area.

    Oh I forgot: “cloud computing”.  That’s Amazon AWS and Google Cloud.  Amazing products.  Time was I had to have racks of servers in a machine room (later, a co-lo) to support a product.    Now, just spin up a few AWS instances (takes seconds, if you have a template defined) and Bob’s your Uncle.

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  • Sun, Oct 06, 2019 - 5:38am

    Reply to #13

    GerrySM

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    Posts: 54

    3+

    "Us" and "them" does not help

    Practically speaking, the whole plan falls dead if the largest carbon emitter in the world (the same size as the US and the EU combined) decides not to go along. Which if Hong Kong is any indication, they most likely won’t.

    Davefairtex, setting up an US and THEM duopoly is the worst thing we can do. China is currently no longer technically a communist state, it’s virtually a fascist state. As such, it is not amenable to requests to do things we want them to do. However, there are many ways to influence what they do via global sanctions and tariffs. If the entire world told China to change or we’d stop buying from them, the change would be instant. But as long as we have idiots running the USA, claiming that global heating is a “hoax”, we cannot have any influence on China’s approach to this issue.

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  • Sun, Oct 06, 2019 - 8:25am

    #16
    treebeard

    treebeard

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    Till it doesn't work......

    We all know that is how it will go, we will keep on doing the same old thing until it doesn’t work. People will continue to consume as much is available as can be had with a reasonable amount of effort, regardless of whether they believe in global warming, peak oil/energy, environmental degradation/destruction, etc., except perhaps for a very small minority of the population, who will be ahead of the curve.  Not sure why all the intensity is needed in the discussion here.  Nothing said here is going to save the world. Variations from culture to country will depend of course on millions of complicating factors: culture, development history, etc.  In societies where people have been more heavily propagandized to equate happiness = consumption, or your value as a person is closely correlated to your accumulated wealth, there may be a tendency to hold harder to less productive means of living and will lead to a lot more suffering inevitably.  Countries that have managed to hold onto their cultural heritage while incorporating the changes the modern society and technology have wrought, will probably have an easier go of it.  And that is interesting academic discussion, and we will get to see that all play out if we are fortunate enough. That is the dark side, people unwilling to change till forced to by immediate circumstances, but there is also the light side to all that.

    When things no longer work, billions of people will instantaneously change how they do business, both collectively and individually.  No massive government program required. There was no program in place for the collapse of Rome, and don’t believe there was a massive die off.  For the sake of survival, people will do what it takes.  Business that are ill equipped for change will disappear and others will emerge. How this all works out of course depends on the rate of change.

    However, people aware of the changes coming at us tend to think change is going to happen a heck of a lot faster than they eventually wind up happening. If I had a penny for every time a heard, “I can’t believe how long the central banks have kept this going, no one could have predicted this”, I would be a billionaire by now. As corrupt, incompetent, unsustainable, and crazy at this world is, it still manages to stagger from one day to the next.  If you believe a Mad Max future is inevitable and just around the corner or that we will “rescued” by AI and alternative technology, not sure what difference that really makes.

    Do I live in a near net zero energy house and have a big garden, yes.  Do I try to focus on people and community, and stay away from material driven consumer society, yes.  But for me, those are moral and spiritual issues.  If we try to scare people into awareness, don’t think that works because you are coming at the problem from your own lower energy center, trying to trigger theirs, and that never has good results.

    As I get older, I have a lot less confidence in my own ability to predict the future and anyone else’s.  The critical issues of how we should live our lives now is available to us if we care to open ourselves up to it, and it will be different for everyone, but we should be true to ourselves regardless of what the future may bring.

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  • Sun, Oct 06, 2019 - 8:42am

    Reply to #16

    ckessel

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    “There was no program in place for the collapse of Rome, and don’t believe there was a massive die off.”

    Treebeard,

    I have been involved in a local community project where we grow potatoes each year. The original idea was to help educate people (mostly young adults via the high school ag program) on the amount of energy it takes to produce the food we eat.

    The first two years it was mostly by hand including the planting, hilling and harvesting but it was so much work people stopped showing up!

    When Rome fell I don’t think much if any of their food was dependent on fossil fuels and they were used to working in the fields.

    Today it would be an apocalypse if we had to produce enough food to eat without fossil fuel. I see that as a predicament. I think the math is that about 10 calories of fossil fuel is needed to produce one calorie of food. And the quality is suspect!

    Coop

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  • Sun, Oct 06, 2019 - 9:27am

    Reply to #7
    vlierheimer

    vlierheimer

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    Crapper and Mots

    Now, now, Dave, some of us like a sparky exchange. So far, they’ve stayed away from the personal, and I like hearing different points of view. I think most of us have a thick skin here at PP. 😉

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  • Sun, Oct 06, 2019 - 1:35pm

    #17

    thc0655

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    Paper or plastic?

    I’ve grown cautious and skeptical about “solutions” when I first hear about them. 🤔

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  • Sun, Oct 06, 2019 - 3:18pm

    Reply to #17
    ao

    ao

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    amen

    For me, skepticism has become the order of the day.  Especially when someone’s trying to ram something down my throat and shame me for not immediately agreeing with them 100%.

    I like how Aldi manages it.  Bring your own bag or pay extra.  Put money in to rent a cart and you get it back if the cart is put back where it belongs.

    Seems to me, I’ve heard these concepts in my distant past:

    Boy Scouts: Be prepared (i.e. bring my own bag)

    Mom and Dad: Put things back when you’re finished with them (i.e. put my cart back and get my money back)

    Makes so much sense.  I just wonder why it hasn’t been widely adopted.

    Life can be so simple and pleasant when we follow the rules (after establishing that the rules have merit and are not just a control mechanism).  Unfortunately, a good portion of the human race doesn’t seem to do this on any consistent basis.

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  • Sun, Oct 06, 2019 - 3:18pm

    #18

    travissidelinger

    Status Member (Offline)

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    Paper or plastic?

    The solution is neither. How about tote bags, baskets, glass jars?

    I can’t count how many times have we ordered something from Amazon and we get a box is a box?

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  • Sun, Oct 06, 2019 - 3:32pm

    Reply to #13
    ao

    ao

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    can't figure this one out

    But as long as we have idiots running the USA, claiming that global heating is a “hoax”, we cannot have any influence on China’s approach to this issue.

    In view of this statement, can anyone tell me why the Obamas bought a $14,850,000 beach front house?  Makes no sense at all to me in view of climate change, global warming, ocean levels rising, more severe storms, acting consistent with your beliefs, and wanting to be an example to others.

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  • Sun, Oct 06, 2019 - 4:25pm

    #19
    Doug

    Doug

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    Obama mansion

    As to why the Obamas bought it, it was reportedly a bargain and they are doing what rich people do.  They buy nice houses in nice places.

    Second, a little googling informed me that the mansion is at about 65 ft elevation.  IPCC predictions are that sea levels will rise about 1/2 to 1 1/2 meters this century.  Their predictions have tracked closely with actual sea level rise for a few decades now.

    That means that by the end of the century the Obama house will still be over 60 feet above sea level.  There is still plenty of time for many generations of Obama’s to enjoy a wonderful home.

    Or, they might enjoy a big profit if they flip it.

    Now, if they had bought a mansion in Miami, they would have more to worry about.

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  • Sun, Oct 06, 2019 - 4:45pm

    Reply to #19
    Nate

    Nate

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    Obama mansion

    3 – 10 feet above sea level.  He doesn’t believe his own bullshit.

     

    https://www.frontpagemag.com/point/2019/08/obama-ocean-mansion-3-10-feet-above-sea-level-daniel-greenfield/

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  • Sun, Oct 06, 2019 - 5:04pm

    Reply to #13

    davefairtex

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    us vs them

    GerrySM-

    I’m not “setting up” an us-vs-them.  I’m just describing reality.  Reality is, anything we do will be utterly overshadowed by the actions of the other major superpower, over whom we have little to no control, and who generates twice as much carbon as the rest of the western world combined.

    We can’t even get them to agree to a reasonably equitable trading relationship, and Trump is using most every tool in the toolbox to do so.  Imagine getting them to curtail carbon – well, verifiable nuclear deals require on-site inspections, and this would too.  Do we imagine they’ll go along with this?

    Heck, just getting the trade thing done is taking years, and is like pulling teeth.

    In engineering scheduling, the practice is to find “what is the long pole in the tent”, and then work on that first, the reason being that if you can’t nail that one down, none of the rest of the things matter all that much.

    Same thing here.  If we can’t get the other superpower to go along, pretty much none of what we do matters.  If we truly only have 12 years, and we spend the trillions to check off every box in AOC’s list, it won’t matter because “someone else” won’t be checking off any boxes at all.  And they are twice our size.

    Is anyone even talking about a regime like you describe?  International economic boycotts of the other superpower to achieve carbon objectives?  Again – long pole in the tent.  If we don’t have such a thing as part of the plan – the plan simply won’t work.

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  • Sun, Oct 06, 2019 - 5:11pm

    Reply to #19
    Doug

    Doug

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    3-10 ft

    That’s bs.  If it were no higher than that it would be regularly flooded now in storms and unusually high tides.

    Check out the pics with this article and tell me its 3-10 ft above seal level.

    https://www.bostonglobe.com/lifestyle/names/2019/08/22/barack-and-michelle-obama-are-reportedly-buying-martha-vineyard-mansion/cuoVonwx5Uxen9GAQMo1bP/story.html

    In fact, looking at a flood zone map, it doesn’t appear that the house is even in a 500 year flood zone.  Though I admit, the map isn’t all that clear.

    Homeowners advised to invest in elevation certificates

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  • Sun, Oct 06, 2019 - 6:59pm

    Reply to #19
    ao

    ao

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    check the topo map

    Reading a number of comments on this site, they said his home is right at the 10 feet contour mark.

    Sea Level Rise Dooms Obama’s New Martha’s Vineyard Mansion

    Here’s the real estate listing:

    https://www.landvest.com/property/118347933/79-turkeyland-cove-road-edgartown-ma-02539/#

    Maybe the property has already been experiencing more flooding and that’s why the seller is selling?  Looking at the photo, I would agree that is doesn’t look much higher than 10 feet off the water.  It certainly isn’t anywhere close to 65 feet, neither by appearance nor by the topographical information.  His house is right on the Edgartown Great Pond between Turkeyland Cove and Slough Cove.  Here’s the topo map:

    Martha’s Vineyard

    Do you see anything much higher than 10 feet around the edge of the pond?  Me neither.  The topo map doesn’t lie.  Let’s consider the possibilities.  With a high tide and hurricane storm surge, that barrier island will be very easily overrun and I’m afraid the Edgartown Great Pond may become the Edgartown Lake, complete with climate change driven waves of considerable height.  As an example, apparently due to climate change, we had a record October 2018 storm on Lake Superior with a 28.8 foot maximum wave height.  Given that the North Atlantic is bigger and badder than Lake Superior, I’d say the combination of high tide, hurricane storm surge, and wave height has the potential to put Barack and his beloved’s real estate in quite a precarious position.

    As far as flipping that property, can you imagine the lawsuit that would result if the subsequent buyer experiences significant property damage, loss of property value, and/or loss of property size secondary to flooding, especially when it is doubtful that the seller could claim ignorance of climate change?

    As I said, I can’t figure this one out.

     

     

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  • Sun, Oct 06, 2019 - 7:30pm

    Reply to #19

    Quercus bicolor

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    Obama Mansion Google Earth

    You can find it on Google Earth at 41.360723°N 70.546310°W.  Move the cursor around and you’ll see the front of the house is at 9′ and the rear is at 11′ above sea level.

     

     

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  • Sun, Oct 06, 2019 - 8:03pm

    Reply to #19

    davefairtex

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    Obama & Google Earth

    QB-

    Doug –

    That’s bs. If it were no higher than that it would be regularly flooded now in storms and unusually high tides.

    Check out the pics with this article and tell me its 3-10 ft above seal level.

    I concur, google earth says “3m” (in the lower right corner of the map) at or around the house location.

    I give him 12 years before he’s underwater.  Better get to work on that sea level mitigation project.

    I have to say, it is a nice house though.  Compare and contrast with Jimmy Carter.  I wonder what Obama did that Carter didn’t do?

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  • Sun, Oct 06, 2019 - 9:29pm

    Reply to #19
    ao

    ao

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    It's all in the bri..., uh, I mean, book deals

    Isn’t it interesting how politicians, who’ve spent their whole career in public service (with that word service open to much interpretation) wind up becoming wealthy with book deals.  Big, BIG book deals … in a country where the majority hardly read more than a page or two at a time anymore … and where they especially don’t spend the time required to wade through a long, boring book (like Kamala Harris’s book that I’m laboriously wading through … yawn … a soporific, self congratulatory tome that I’d heartily recommend to anyone suffering from insomnia).  Could the possibility exist that it’s not the public buying all these books but just a few (and perhaps a very, very few) select buyers?  And could these buyers purchase large numbers of these books for the purpose of charitably distributing them for free (or maybe just chucking them in a dumpster someplace)?  And could this be a way of legally (but not ethically) transferring funds to the book author for political favors, connections, information, etc., rendered past, present, and future.  You know, like those lucrative speaking gigs where you get 6 figures for telling the obvious to your other CFR buddies.  Naaahhh.  That’s way too far out to even consider.  Gotta stop reading all this Federal Reserve, JFK assassination, and 9/11 stuff and head to bed.  Kamala babe, where are you?

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  • Sun, Oct 06, 2019 - 10:33pm

    #20

    GerrySM

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    Obama's house

    Sure it might be under water in 100 years, but by then Barack and Michelle would have been dead for 80 years, more or less. They have other assets to leave to their kids.

    Re: China — we cannot keep saying “let’s do nothing because someone else is doing nothing”. That’s unproductive, childish and self-defeating. Once we are all doing something, China will join us, or they will be shunned.

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  • Sun, Oct 06, 2019 - 11:48pm

    #21
    ejhr

    ejhr

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    Cubic Mile of Oil statistics

    This good article still makes it hard to visualise the scale of the operation required to switch to renewables. Wikipedia has an article “the Cubic Mile of Oil equivalent”.   One year’s consumption is about 1 CuM., just in petroleum. The total with coal, gas and renewables ic about 3CuM.

    One omission in the article is it’s not considering growth in the regular economy. Take the IMF statistic of 3.5% annual growth and our total consumption would double in 20 years. That now comes in at 5-6 CuM . Basically double every example given in this article. Let’s say we can convert to hydro, the most efficient alternate energy source. Just to keep pace with current growth -which we are addicted to- would require 153 dams each the size of China’s 3 gorges dam. In 20 years. That is close to building 7 such dams every year. It really is a no can do .

    So basically we as a locust species are going to crash. It is hard wired into our make up. We humans cannot understand the “exponential function” as Prof Bartlett said years ago.

    Everyone says Malthus was wrong. No he was right, just premature. We made a few adjustments but they all aimed at using more resources in a shorter period of time. and now time itself is the killer tool.

     

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  • Mon, Oct 07, 2019 - 1:40am

    #22
    Doug

    Doug

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    Seashores

    Has no one here ever been to a seashore?  Nothing is built within 3-10 feet of sea level unless its on stilts.  Edgartown itself has an elevation of 16.4 ft. and it is far downhill from Obama’s potential mansion.

    https://www.google.com/search?sxsrf=ACYBGNSkhhsW5Azx4gKj4tMfGf1NkyNVCQ%3A1570430405828&ei=xd2aXa6cMs6v_QbP0o9w&q=edgartown+ma+elevation&oq=Edgartown+MA+elevation&gs_l=psy-ab.1.0.0i70i251.41065.44434..72469…0.2..0.110.904.4j5……0….1..gws-wiz…….0i71j0i20i263j0j0i22i30.9euCrVPJ5Qs

    The confusion probably entered the singularly feeble minds of Anthony Watts, et al, because the beach front of the estate probably does run down to close to sea level.  It’s a beach.  The Edgartown Great pond, upon which the property’s beach fronts, is separated from the ocean by a thin barrier beach that probably over tops in storms and high tides.  The so-called pond is actually an estuary that, by definition, must be close to sea level.

    In a tony neighborhood like Edgartown and, more generally, Martha’s Vineyard, I’m sure codes would prohibit building within flood zones, which 3-10 feet above sea level would certainly be.  Hell, I live near a small river that has a flood zone greater than 10 ft above OHW.

    Besides, it defies common sense that 1) a real estate developer would have invested so much in a very expensive mansion if he knew the place was a flooding hazard, 2)the local codes would permit a house being built that close to sea level in 2001 (when it was built), 2) the undoubtedly intelligent Obamas and their retinue of lawyers and advisors would be stupid enough to buy a place that floods regularly, 3) local real estate pros would try to unload a place that floods regularly for double digit millions of dollars.

    I saw the 65′ figure that I originally quoted somewhere in my early googling, but am unable to find it again.  So, my bad.  Nonetheless, nothing suggests that the mansion is within 3-10 ft of the ocean.  (Except, that is, for the far right wing nuts who profit from hating the Obamas)

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  • Mon, Oct 07, 2019 - 1:41am

    Reply to #20

    davefairtex

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    doing something

    GerrySM-

    Re: China — we cannot keep saying “let’s do nothing because someone else is doing nothing”. That’s unproductive, childish and self-defeating. Once we are all doing something, China will join us, or they will be shunned.

    Hey I’m all for doing something.  That Peak Oil mitigation thing that Hirsch came up with – I’m fine with doing that.  That actually makes sense to me because, China or no China, we benefit regardless.

    Let’s just pretend the Hirsch conversion is about climate change.  And if China actually starts to show they care, maybe we can do more.

    Sound good?

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  • Mon, Oct 07, 2019 - 1:54am

    Reply to #22

    davefairtex

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    doug is confused again

    Doug-

    I saw the 65′ figure that I originally quoted somewhere in my early googling, but am unable to find it again. So, my bad. Nonetheless, nothing suggests that the mansion is within 3-10 ft of the ocean. (Except, that is, for the far right wing nuts who profit from hating the Obamas)

    So Doug.  I voted for Obama.  And I also know how to use “google earth”.  Google earth says the Obama Mansion is at 3m elevation.  Not “far right wing nuts”.  Google earth.  Is that a product of “far right wing nuts?”

    As for being an Obama Hater – I didn’t see Jimmy Carter living like this after his time in office.  I do see Obama doing so.  Does that make me a far right wing nut?  I’m not sure there are many far right wing nuts who voted for Obama.  I think I even contributed to his campaign once, long ago.

    Obama’s “book deal” was what, $65 million?  Nice work, if you can get it.  Carter should have “written a book”.  He is the single best ex President we’ve had, IMO.    Does thinking that make me a “far right wing nut”?

    Try google earth.  Then come back and tell us what you found.

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  • Mon, Oct 07, 2019 - 5:07am

    #23

    Michael_Rudmin

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    I think it's more what Carter did that Obama didn't do.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Habitat_for_Humanity

    I’m going to say that Carter has, in a very real sense, plunked down over $30 million for his mansion.  Only difference is, he has a lot of tenants.  And he did it when the rewards for being an (xhmmm) ex president were a lot less, and the cost / value of $30 million was a lot more.

    For what it’s worth, if I had been old enough to vote I wouldn’t have voted for Jimmy Carter… but I find him to be better than any president since him.  Retrospectively, I also find him to be better than most before him.  I admire him.  I wish the CIA hadn’t overthrown him with the October surprise to seize the presidency for the next forty years, but it seems pretty clear they did.

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  • Mon, Oct 07, 2019 - 5:14am

    #24

    thc0655

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    Beliefs vs facts

    Over the years here Doug has consistently demonstrated his refusal to let facts and data put a dent in any of his fiercely and emotionally held beliefs and assumptions. He’s best ignored. I’ve never seen him alter one of his beliefs (“no one who is intelligent, especially our lord and savior Barack Hussein Obama, would buy or build a house where it was only 3 meters above sea level, SO the house they bought MUST absolutely be higher than that and I don’t care what anyone says.”).

    Yo Adam! Will we ever get the “Ignore” button back?

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  • Mon, Oct 07, 2019 - 5:50am

    Reply to #21

    Chris Martenson

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    Re: Cubic Mile of oil

    Take the IMF statistic of 3.5% annual growth and our total consumption would double in 20 years. That now comes in at 5-6 CuM

    That’s of course a great point, and I left that one and many others out of this very short article.  Even with that, it’s already longer than most people are willing to read.

    Which illustrates in a small way just how complex and complicated this all is.  To have been somewhat more complete I would have had to include at least one or more paragraphs on the following:

    • Future growth in consumption (which you noted by growing the 3 CuMi to 6 CuMi)
    • The fact that total current battery production, if dedicated to storing grid scale energy from solar/wind, can store about 10 minutes worth
    • That Alt-energy is not “renewables” but “replaceables” requiring a complete rebuild and replacement cycle every ~25 years
    • There is no all electric option for the following:
      • Cargo ships
      • Large jets
      • Long haul cargo trains
      • Making ammonia from atmospheric nitrogen
      • Large tractors
      • Tens of thousands of industrial chemical precursors

    Each of these mini-topics is, in fact, a macro-topic of enormous complexity.  Whole books could and have been written about each of them and a hundred more.

    As our earnest but not believable jet-setting elites and sea-level mansion buying former presidents virtue signal and tell us all that we must be prepared to sacrifice, their own tone-deaf actions utterly undercut any weight their words might carry.

    Similarly, any pretense of democracy will be chucked right the eff out the window the second anybody actually tries to align their personal actions with the real situation on the ground.
    The Extinction Rebellion folks already discovered that in the UK there’s no such thing as democracy or rule of law.

    Without a warrant the police just bashed in the door of their rented flat, arrested everyone on the pre-crime charge of planning to do something in the future (“suspicion of conspiracy to cause public nuisance”), and took all of their equipment.

    The powers that be are going to use every trick in the book and, now we know, many tricks that aren’t even in the books.  Yet.

    You can be sure that “pre-crime” is racing right to the top of the list, which we know is something that one of Jeffrey Epstein’s scummy companies was working on along with some awful Likudnik connections.

    I tell you, it’s almost as if there’s a great battle shaping up – one that can be condensed into “good vs. evil.”  You may be forced to choose sides.  Choose carefully but always in alignment with your inner compass.

    In the meantime, here’s a recent pic from downtown LA.  We can ignore this all we want, but the process of collapse is well underway.

    As energy winds down, this really is the future.

    The extinction rebellion is right – we either take all of this quite seriously right here and now, or we might as well just throw the largest farewell party in all of history because what comes next will be a fantastically narrow bottleneck.

    The math says so.

     

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  • Mon, Oct 07, 2019 - 6:08am

    Reply to #23
    Edwardelinski

    Edwardelinski

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    Posts: 333

    Michael

    Any idea how the flood buyout program is going in Virginia Beach?Looks like they have gotten out in front of the problem..

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  • Mon, Oct 07, 2019 - 6:20am

    Reply to #3

    Chris Martenson

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    Living in the Real World

    This essay states a focus on the problem of “the world transitioning gently to an alternative.”  This is misleading doom  porn.  I think that you need to be more honest/accurate by stating your focus is on the inability of “the American way of life transitioning gently…”  The majority of the “world” is now already at a perhaps 10x lower energy level than that of the narcissistic, over-fed Americans and actually, are increasing their quality of life due to renewables.  Their future looks brighter due to renewable energies and they are going for it.  This is the real world.

    Mots –

    I’m really intrigued and inspired by your experience in wiring up DC stuff directly.  Tinkering and working it all out.  I wish you lived next door and I could wander over and watch and maybe learn.

    My point in writing this article is to point out that the massively complex – and growing – economy is not going to transition over to renewables.  Not easily and not without a lot of probable losses.

    I 100% agree that western countries, with the US near the head of that pack, can and should (and eventually will) live on a lot less energy per capita.

    I take exception at the idea that Nepal offers us anything useful in the way that they are using renewables because, as far as I know, Nepal does not produce any of solar or wind gear being installed.  That takes heavy industry, and that takes a complex economy, and that takes a massive amount of energy flowing through to build up and then sustain.

    It’s kind of irrelevant to my argument, no offense, if or how a developing country imports super-high-tech gadgets and then uses them to measurably improve their energy poor lives.

    The necessary question is “how much energy is required to sustain the manufacturing supply chains elsewhere required to build (and then transport) these gadgets in the first place?”

    My main point was that if we collectively wait until after the obvious peak in fossil fuels to address that question, we’ll find that it’s impossible to address on the downslope of net energy per capita.

    Once on the downslope, my theory goes, we’re going to be busy fighting wars, scrabbling for “our fair share” and scrambling to preserve what we’ve already built vs. having the capacity to build brand new, grand, alt-energy systems.

    The challenge, then, of course will be to not only replace energy gone missing from fossil fuels, but to also build out energy systems to add to the mix.

    Without that growth imperative, our entire financial system locks up and collapses.

    That’s what’s being fought tooth and nail right now.

    And I get it.  Without our financial/money system operating smoothly, everything breaks down.  Nothing is possible.  People are hard enough to organize into teams of eight.  Try organizing 7.8 billion when the main agreement among and between them all (money) gets shredded.

    It’s a before and after scenario.

    At any rate, my thesis is that outsiders can come and install all the solar panels in Nepal that they want – literally enough to bring light to every house and every corner – and that Nepal will not somehow, magically, develop the ability to create their own replacement panels, batteries, and wiring.

    That capability requires a massive subsidy of surplus energy from elsewhere, which in this story is fossil fuels.

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  • Mon, Oct 07, 2019 - 8:12am

    Reply to #20
    ao

    ao

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 04 2009

    Posts: 964

    China has no problem being shunned

    When you study Chinese history, you realize the “Middle Kingdom” has no problem being shunned.  In fact, they often view it as a badge of honor and an indication that they’re not like all the rest of those barbarians.

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  • Mon, Oct 07, 2019 - 8:19am

    #25

    Michael_Rudmin

    Status Gold Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 25 2014

    Posts: 877

    Virginia Beach / edwardelinski

    Edwardelinski…  I’d be interested to see what article you refer to, when you talk about Virginia Beach getting in front of the problem.

    I was talking to a relative who lives near the north shore on the mouth of the Chesapeake bay (just east of the bay bridge tunnel).  There’s major dune erosion there, and Virginia Beach’s response is to put some 300′ of sand in front of the dune.  However, to even have the right to do that, they have to obtain deeds for the waterfront where they will operate.  So there’s been a lot of legal back-and-forth, but it’s going forward.

    I’m not really sure that’s the best solution — one really wants to ask why there has been a problem, and try to address more natural and self-maintaining solutions.  For example, I think there is one mangrove tree that can handle our climate.  Maybe we’d want that — or maybe we would do well to try to start up some coral colonies.  Some researchers at the VIMS/William and Mary I think are really trying to do that, IIRC.

    What, more specifically, were you thinking about?

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  • Mon, Oct 07, 2019 - 9:41am

    Reply to #25
    Edwardelinski

    Edwardelinski

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Dec 23 2012

    Posts: 333

    The Reporter is

    Peter Coutu of The Virginian Pilot.I am unable to access without paying for it.I read over the summer.The sunshine flooding reminded me of Miami.Hope that helps.

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  • Mon, Oct 07, 2019 - 11:01am

    Reply to #22
    ao

    ao

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 04 2009

    Posts: 964

    3+

    the truth shall set you free

    Doug,

    I’ve been to the seashore a lot.  Practically spent my summers there as a kid.  My great aunt had a house on Long Beach Island, NJ just in from the beach.  My godfather had a house on a lagoon in Beach Haven West.  My sister has a house on the beach in Seaside Park.  None of them are on stilts.  Along the Jersey Shore, for years, there were next to no houses on stilts.  I do remember seeing my first house on stilts in Rehoboth Beach Delaware in 1979 though.  In recent years, I’m sure more are being built on stilts.  From my sister’s house in Seaside Park, you could see the roller coaster that washed into the sea when Super Storm Sandy hit.  But NONE of the houses along that beach or in a house or two or even in a block or two was on stilts.  I’ve been on beaches on the West Coast, the East Coast, the Gulf Coast, Hawaii, Bahamas, Jamaica, Dominican Republic, Mexico, Columbia, Panama, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Chile, Argentina, Uruguay, the Falkland Islands, New Zealand, Australia, England, Scotland, Northern Ireland, Ireland, France, Germany, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Estonia, Russia, Italy, Greece, Croatia, and Turkey.  The vast majority of homes were NOT on stilts.  So they goes your beach and stilt hypothesis.

    Do you think the topographical maps are wrong and there is a geographical anomaly in the region of Obama’s house?

    Do you think Google Maps is wrong?
    Do you think the real estate listing is for the wrong location?
    Doug, lots of things defy common sense.  Where I grew up, there was a flood plain behind our house.  Federal law prohibited building on it.  But they built on it anyway.  Someone’s palm obviously got greased.  We warned the people looking at these houses that they would have flooding.  In defiance of common sense, they bought them anyway.  Guess what?  They would up with swimming pools for basements.  So much for common sense.
    Do you think Obama and his lawyers and advisors are immune from making errors and dumb choices?  If so, he would probably be the first politician in history to fall into this category.
    Do you think real estate pros would never try to unethically sell a property that would put millions in their pockets?  If so, time to wake up to the real world around you.
    Doug, it’s OK to make a mistake and admit you’re wrong.  Really it is.  We’ve all made mistakes, myself included.  I’m sure you didn’t get a 100 on every test you took in school.  But the biggest mistake you can make is not recognizing one when you’ve made it and repeating the process over and over again.
    The point is, when we have leaders (of any political party) who virtue signal but fly everywhere in private jets, own homes with massive carbon foot prints, and buy beachfront property in the light of proselytzing about rising ocean levels, why should people listen to them, believe them, or follow them.
    I want a leader like a Patton who led by example and swam an icy river in Europe during WW2 to show his soldiers how it was done.

     

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  • Mon, Oct 07, 2019 - 12:33pm

    #26

    sand_puppy

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 13 2011

    Posts: 1971

    6+

    Staying a step or two ahead

    As Chris wrote:

    The Extinction Rebellion folks already discovered that in the UK there’s no such thing as democracy or rule of law.

    Without a warrant the police just bashed in the door of their rented flat, arrested everyone on the pre-crime charge of planning to do something in the future (“suspicion of conspiracy to cause public nuisance”), and took all of their equipment.

    This is quite similar to what Charles Hugh Smith has experienced with Twitter, Facebook and Google.

    This is straight out of Kafka: an unaccountable, all-powerful, completely opaque bureaucracy arbitrarily bans your Twitter followers from retweeting a link to your original, copyrighted content….

    This is exactly like the Soviet Union, where citizens were routinely tossed in the gulag for having “anti-Soviet thoughts.” …[users] are not presented with evidence of their “crimes” nor are they given a chance in a transparent, fairly administered process to contest their “guilty” verdict.

    As for Facebook: direct links from Facebook users to oftwominds.com dropped by 90% last year over the course of a few days…

    Having been put on a list of sites deemed “guilty of anti-Soviet thoughts” by propagandists purporting to reveal propaganda [PropOrNot], I’ve been shadow-banned and censored without any recourse or opportunity to contest my sentence in the Big Tech gulag. This is how Big Tech silences us, quietly, without any evidence, without any hearing, without any recourse, in secret extra-legal proceedings where we are refused the opportunity to question our accuser and contest the “evidence,” if any.

    And John Brennen dropped this wonderful bombshell:

    [F]ormer CIA Director John Brennan clarifies exactly how the deep state sees “due process”…

    In an interview on MSNBC, Brennan, unblinkingly states that “people are innocent, you know, until alleged to be involved in some kind of criminal activity.”

    What I am leading up to is the suspicion that Peak Prosperity may at some point be declared a “terrorist organization” and something like — guilty of “radicalizing the youth.”  (Ya know–anyone who doesn’t think that an obvious implosion demolition is a natural event is under Russian influence and all that.)

    Protecting the public may require blocking the PP website.

    This community is valuable to me.  Communication networks may need to shift to shortwave radio at some point.  I wish that I had more expertise in what kind of equipment and network could keep us connected after the internet is shut down.

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  • Mon, Oct 07, 2019 - 1:23pm

    #27

    thc0655

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 27 2010

    Posts: 1538

    4+

    These are the people who are going to make the Green New Deal work

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  • Mon, Oct 07, 2019 - 6:11pm

    Reply to #27
    ao

    ao

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 04 2009

    Posts: 964

    6+

    I could feel my gut tightening as I watched this

    This video is so true and personally experiencing these situations is both maddening and frightening.  I think I may have written previously about our run-in in our office building with a state elevator inspector who changed his mind, back and forth, about the regulations, each time costing us thousands of dollars.  Also, in my former profession, physical therapy, which treats Medicare patients and therefore is regulated by Medicare code, there are conflicting laws.  A dual credentialed PT/attorney friend informed me in the past that there were 50,000 pages to this code (and probably more now).  We are expected to know all these rules and regulations.  But if you actually read every page of code and understood it, you’d have time for little else in your life.  In fact, my friend told me that the top Medicare attorneys in the country don’t even know them all.  Yet because of these conflicting laws, technically, that means every Medicare provider is in violation of Federal law.  The consequences of being charged with such a violation can be devastating.  And yet, the laws remain as they are, perched to take down anyone the Federal government may have in their sights on any given day for whatever reason.  Sand_puppy’s concerns stated above are very real and are likely to become of increasingly greater significance in years to come as government seizes progressively more control and searches for progressively more revenue, be it in the form of fees, taxes, fines, or penalties. The drain on time, productivity, and finances and the level of stress it produces in this country is enormous.

     

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  • Mon, Oct 07, 2019 - 9:30pm

    Reply to #26

    Mots

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 18 2012

    Posts: 86

    1+

    what kind of equipment and network could keep us connected after the internet is shut down

    Sandman, I went through this same thought process about 5 years ago and went out and got my advanced amateur radio license (AK4VO)
    Here are some observations/conclusions (we talked about this about a year or two ago already so this may be a repeat)
    1. amateur radio communications are all listened to and cannot be in secret code, or for commercial purposes

    2. the most important part of any system (unless you are using VHF/UHF repeaters to bounce your signal through a tower system which is not peer to peer) is the antenna.  Spend effort to make/obtain the best antenna possible as that generally limits the most, unless you use the infrastructure of repeater towers to get a high frequency VHF or UHF signal out past line of sight. (but the point is to avoid infrastructure I think)

    3. for peer to peer communications (direct connections) 7-21 MHz bands are best.  Voice SSB can be done for regional group voice chats at 1.6 or 3.5MHZ bands up to a few hundred miles and higher MHz for longer distances at night, but summer conditions with lightening storms can really block or limit things.

    4. I recommend getting a receiver and to listen in to regional chat sessions organized by existing prepper groups (on an assigned frequency and time each member checks in and reports radio conditions).

    with a good quality antenna use either an old fashioned radio such as a TECSUN with SSB capability or else a Software Defined Radio that connects to your computer.  Later get a license (it is extremely easy these days) and a transmitter/transceiver.  Many such as myself buy a Japanese all band (ca. 1.6MHz to ca. 50MHz bands) transceiver (yaesu, icom etc) with a 100 watt output.

    5. It would be extremely valuable if someone at PP with advanced software skills could look at the software defined radio dongles out there and helped select a simple and low cost way to connect an antenna to a laptop using software to get excellent reception in a manner that anyone could do it, from the myriad products and experiences reported.  In recent years very good reliable but SLOW text digital modes have become popular based on SSB wherein many communicate in text virtually around the world on only 50 watts.  But it is best to start with exploring how to receive.  My vision is that all members of a group would be able to receive using a 25$ investment into software defined radio but only a few would have the skills to maintain high power transmitters (such as up to 1500 watts) to get messages out.

    The “techguy” named person on this blog site disagreed basically with many of my comments the last time I opined on this subject.  But I think that he was mostly thinking about short distance (less than 1000 miles, generally less than a few hundred miles and more specifically tens of miles without extensive infrastructure) using VHF/UHF frequencies that are line of sight and use repeater infrastructure to extend further.  There is a real art to this stuff which involves learning about physics and especially geophysics of the upper atmosphere for point to point long range communication if you want to avoid infrastructure.  I bought two sets of high power equipment and various antennas etc but am not spending time on this because no particular need now.  Maybe after two or three more years I will provide a high powered text service, if anyone were interested in joining with me.  Software defined radio has made great strides to allow low cost sensitive reception and efficient (but slow) text modes are advancing all the time………….
    73   Mots

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  • Mon, Oct 07, 2019 - 10:41pm

    Reply to #20

    GerrySM

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 20 2017

    Posts: 54

    More than what?

    And if China actually starts to show they care, maybe we can do more.

    You mean more than the nothing we’re doing now?

    BTW, that’s exactly what China is saying: let’s see you do something, then we’ll do something. Can you see that this is a problem on all sides, and that your attitude is part of the problem?

     

    Google earth says the Obama Mansion is at 3m elevation.

    3m = 9ft, so that’s more than enough to keep the property above sea level for 100-200 years. Move on, this is a non-issue.

     

     

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  • Mon, Oct 07, 2019 - 10:50pm

    Reply to #20

    GerrySM

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 20 2017

    Posts: 54

    1+

    China could not exist economically if shunned

    When you study Chinese history, you realize the “Middle Kingdom” has no problem being shunned. In fact, they often view it as a badge of honor and an indication that they’re not like all the rest of those barbarians.

    Um, no. That’s not how global trade works. China is not an island, their populace cannot buy all their products, and without extensive international trade it would collapse into one of the bloody revolutions that feature throughout its history.

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  • Tue, Oct 08, 2019 - 2:24am

    Reply to #3

    Mots

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 18 2012

    Posts: 86

    1+

    point out that the massively complex – and growing – economy is not going to transition over to renewables.

    Thank you for your kind comments.
    My point differs from what you are saying.  I said that most people in the world are achieving a better life and are using renewables for a better life. Now. The majority on the planet.  Not the 8.8%.
    The majority I refer to spends much more of their time with family and neighbors and less time driving cars aimlessly and buying imported stuff that they don’t need (compared to the American or 8.8% first worlders).  An inspection of the majority of the world’s population and how they adapt to renewables has value.
    Nepal gets almost all of its electricity from renewables (water power) and their living standard are increasing, in large part due to this.  Most countries including the US rely on China for solar electric as well as virtually all (if not all) the transistors and other hardware to manipulate and distribute that energy.
    Renewables create surplus energy.  In the case of solar electric, the low (less than 10 EROI) reported studies included crazy factors such as extensive earth moving, concrete pouring, security guards, lawyering, banking, etc, and converting the outrageous monetary payments for such directly into BTU energy.  Such payments are much lower outside the 8.8% and not necessary.  My own discovery was that most (more than 75%) of the infrastructure to USE solar electric (based on 100 year old AC grid technology) is not needed and improperly decreases the surplus from solar electric by at least a factor of two (as measured by the EROI studies which convert $ spent on buying and replacing devices directly into more energy consumed before getting surplus.)
    I don’t know about wind but solar and water provide surplus energy, and furthermore, the efficiency of manufacture is decreasing so that the price of solar is decreasing exponentially.  I analyzed “do the numbers” for a poorly cited EROI case on this blog a long time ago yet the same paper  was trotted out again last year for the incorrect proposition that solar electric does not produce any significant surplus energy.  That surplus energy is generally higher quality than from fossil.  So the sun doesn’t shine sometimes, a process has to slow down or stop, like my air conditioning automatically shuts down when clouds go overhead.  Aluminum smelting shuts down when the water power  drops.  A manufacturing friend of mine replaced natural gas for electric recently due to superior ability to control and recycle the heat used in manufacture.  Regarding nitrogen fixation, we need to get back to using microbes in the soil.  We need to let go of the American dream of overcoming nature or replacing nature with high energy processes.  Seeing that the majority of the world improve and adopt renewables more completely than we (Americans) do is a great step towards the humility needed.

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  • Tue, Oct 08, 2019 - 5:13am

    Reply to #26

    davefairtex

    Status Diamond Member (Offline)

    Joined: Sep 03 2008

    Posts: 3227

    1+

    low cost hardware/software platform

    Mots-

    A good hardware-software platform for integrating with – pretty much any DIY project is the Raspberry Pi.  I have one – it is $35, plus extra for a case, and extra for a flash drive.  They run on small amounts of power, and they have this GPIO interface that lets you talk to all sorts of oddball interfaces.

    It is a broadcom 4-core ARM8 processor running at 1.5 ghz; I think that’s 1500 times faster (with 3 more cores) than the computer I first started using an embarrassingly long time ago as an undergrad.

    https://www.raspberrypi.org/magpi/raspberry-pi-4-specs-benchmarks/

    I got mine about 6 months ago.  I think it is pretty neat.  And they’d do well in a low power environment since they have a reasonable amount of CPU, but they don’t use much power, so they’d last a long time on a relatively small UPS battery.

    There are very low power versions too for substantially cheaper prices.  I just got the “high end unit” because – well, it was $35, so why not?

    Check out all the hardware interfaces they have.

    If you supplied your own keyboard and a monitor, you could have a low power/low cost computer.  Probably a bit clunky but…did I mention low cost?  And a “chat app” that received messages from your low bitrate receiver wouldn’t be too hard to write, I’m guessing.

    You could add a little external blinky light that the Pi could turn on when messages arrived.

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  • Tue, Oct 08, 2019 - 6:43am

    Reply to #26

    Mots

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 18 2012

    Posts: 86

    2+

    low cost hardware/software platform

    Davefairtex, you are absolutely right.  I really need to learn Linux, thanks for the encouragement.  I note that many people need to get away from Microsoft/Google/Apple and that the latest version of Raspberry Pi (4) is a powerful alternative computer.  I need to work on this………

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  • Tue, Oct 08, 2019 - 6:58am

    Reply to #26

    davefairtex

    Status Diamond Member (Offline)

    Joined: Sep 03 2008

    Posts: 3227

    1+

    integration

    As a small, self-contained single board computer with a dozen different interfaces, it could provide a reasonable interface to whatever product you are constructing.  Customize it  yourself, tack on a display, maybe have keypad (or maybe a cheap touch screen) and…really its pretty reasonable.  You would probably need a modest battery to provide the 5v @ 2.5A.

    https://www.lifewire.com/ways-to-power-your-raspberry-pi-4092246

    I have mine attached to a ridiculously large UPS.  “It will never die”, which is the point.  It is running critical systems management for my project, and so it  has to last through “however long” the power failure lasts.

    (Battery management: also part of linux/pi, although sadly I couldn’t get my particular UPS to talk reliably to the Pi – but I found a way to do it remotely)

    UI isn’t the strength of linux, but – it is probably “good enough.”  My UI is “ssh”, which, since I’m a server guy, is all I ever really want anyway.

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  • Tue, Oct 08, 2019 - 7:26am

    #28
    psebby

    psebby

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    Posts: 4

    2+

    Raspberry Pi local wifi

    Yeah, Raspberry Pi is great!  Off and on, for a couple of years, I’ve been experimenting with using a Pi and a small wifi access point for an entirely local (non-Internet-based) communication center.  The Pi hosts a small web server and Sqllite database and a mobile app I wrote using the Ionic framework.  (Well, it’s more of a responsive web site – you don’t have to install it as an app.)  After the Pi boots up, anyone within wifi range can connect to “local.net” with their mobile device’s web browser (which won’t be good for much else if the SHTF, right?) and use the discussion forums on my “web site” (all local to the Pi, not on an Internet server) to exchange info, upload pictures, send personal messages to other users.  Eventually, I want to power the system from a 12V battery.

    I’ve got all the software running, now I’m working through reliability issues – sometimes the Pi just hangs – can’t ssh to it or anything – and I have to power off/on, which sometimes does bad things to the file system.

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  • Tue, Oct 08, 2019 - 1:41pm

    #29

    AKGrannyWGrit

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 06 2011

    Posts: 471

    2+

    “EXPERTS Say”

    So all we have to do is listen to the “experts” – maybe not?

     

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  • Tue, Oct 08, 2019 - 2:25pm

    Reply to #20
    ao

    ao

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 04 2009

    Posts: 964

    1+

    history and geopolitics says otherwise

    Um, no. That’s not how global trade works. China is not an island, their populace cannot buy all their products, and without extensive international trade it would collapse into one of the bloody revolutions that feature throughout its history.

    Theoretical ideals of global trade aside, China has, on numerous occasions throughout history, isolated itself.  While isolation is certainly not optimal for trade, they have survived for 4,000 years.  That says something, revolutions or not.

    Can you recall any historical incidents in modern history where ALL nations successfully shunned a single nation?  I can’t … because it’s never happened.  The country on the outs will inevitably have some allies and some neutral countries that will trade with it.  Their trade situation wouldn’t be as favorable as if they had free and unrestricted trade but they’ll still survive.  Human nature and the desire by some to make a buck regardless of the ethics or the morality of a situation guarantees that they will not be shunned 100%.

    But let’s say there’s enough economic pressure exerted to begin creating an unstable domestic situation.  The Chinese leadership has a choice.  They can let rising discontent among citizens to be expressed internally through civil strife and possible revolution.  Or they can direct that discontent externally.  Which do you think they’ll choose?  My bet would be they’ll direct the anger of their citizens outward, most likely towards one or more of the entities that are shunning them or their proxies.

    Geopolitical considerations suggest that they will not direct it to a country that is on their borders, especially countries with strong past and present political alliances, such as North Korea or Vietnam.  China wants to maintain a certain geographical buffer.  Also, most Southeast Asian countries bordering China need China since it is the primary market for their products so the likelihood of those countries shunning China is minuscule.  China will most likely direct violent energies to a country from which they are separated by water and also a country with which they have had a gripe in the past.  The two most obvious candidates are Taiwan and Japan.

    Do you think Russia will shun China given the present balance of power in the world?  Unlikely.  Russia will either ally with them or supply them with weapons, raw materials, food, etc. necessary for when China goes to war.

    Also, I don’t think you’ve considered the Chinese mindset.  They aren’t about to let anyone push them around, especially the West and Japan (given past intervention in Chinese affairs by those parties at the time of the Boxer Rebellion, the Sino-Japanese Wars, WW2, the Chinese Communist Revolution, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, etc.).

    So while shunning China is a theoretical possibility, in the real world, it will most likely fail abysmally and may, in fact, be strongly counterproductive and create even greater problems (since nothing pollutes like war, especially a nuclear war).  Coercing through negative incentives won’t work with the Chinese but coaxing via positive incentives might.

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  • Tue, Oct 08, 2019 - 3:31pm

    Reply to #20

    Quercus bicolor

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Mar 19 2008

    Posts: 230

    1+

    where did this begin?

    We’re going down the rabbit hole of how to get China to reduce emissions, but first perhaps we should answer the question “How much of China’s emissions are directly related to it’s net exports, mainly to the west?”

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  • Tue, Oct 08, 2019 - 4:06pm

    Reply to #20

    davefairtex

    Status Diamond Member (Offline)

    Joined: Sep 03 2008

    Posts: 3227

    GDP & emissions

    China’s trade surplus is about 2.6% of GDP.

    How much of their emissions are them driving around their own country, providing goodies for their own citizens, generating electricity for their own cities (most of which is done using coal!  omg!) vs assembling computers for the West?

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electricity_sector_in_China

    I agree with ao about “shunning China”.  They do a fantastic job of bribing everyone in government in every targeted country to support them.  They are very, very smart.

    “Somehow” Hunter Biden got $1.5 billion dollars to manage.  From China.  And old Joe: “oh heck, China, they’re not a problem.”  Western politicians are very open to bribes; Obama’s $65 million “book deal”, Hunter’s $1.5 billion management “because he’s just that good” – but I don’t mean to be singling out the Dems.  It is both parties, and they are bribed by both corporations as well as foreign governments.  Trump is the very first US President to really negotiate with China in a tough, realistic way.  Why do we think that is?

    Sure.  We’ll all shun China.  Except those that won’t because they’ve been bribed.  Or coerced.  This is a superpower we are talking about, not some banana republic we can hose at will.  And they get a vote as to how this “shunning” thing turns out.

    We should focus on converting what we can to electrics; trains, and what not, per Hirsch, to prepare for the decline in oil production that will happen when shale peaks out.  Heck, China is doing electric buses – in  a really big way.  We could do that too.  Why are they doing this?  I’m certain they are aware of peak oil, and are dutifully executing on a transition plan, like all rational countries should be doing.  Maybe we should follow their lead?

    Hirsch Report.

    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-05-15/in-shift-to-electric-bus-it-s-china-ahead-of-u-s-421-000-to-300

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  • Tue, Oct 08, 2019 - 4:46pm

    Reply to #28

    Mots

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 18 2012

    Posts: 86

    Raspberry Pi local wifi

    Psebby
    This is great, you are using a Linux based system to set up a local intranet wifi.  I want to hear more, and would like to see a detailed explanation posted on a website.

    In this context I note that a friend from Europe recently built a link for me to extend my wi fi (at about 400 Mb/sec data rate using a Ubiquiti NS-5ACL Nanostation 5AC Loco 5Ghz Outdoor Wireless AC Bridge/CPE) more than a kilometer to an adjacent island.  A raspberry pi based system of expandable service area local wifi seems like an extremely worthwhile activity of the sort that sandman was wondering about in his recent post (how to adapt to a world where the internet becomes less useful).  I can send you info on my ubiquiti wifi expansion system if you like but imagine that there are many alternatives out there.  I want to hear more on this topic.

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  • Tue, Oct 08, 2019 - 5:08pm

    Reply to #28

    davefairtex

    Status Diamond Member (Offline)

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    2+

    local wifi

    There is also the dd-wrt project, which is an open source router distro which you could use – I haven’t tried hacking on it, but it does seem to be a bit more purpose-built for constructing local wifi.

    I run dd-wrt as my internal router in my home.  I don’t exactly trust the Huawei router that my ISP decided to give me – the “firewall” feature on this Huawei router was disabled, for “whatever reason”.  Traitorous dogs, my ISP.  And Huawei too.

    So, dd-wrt.  I just use dd-wrt, I haven’t tried customizing it.  I expect its probably more reliable than a Pi.  One note: its probably a good idea to reboot the Pi every week or so.  That’s what I do with the dd-wrt router.  Supposedly that’s the single most useful security thing you can do – an occasional reboot.

    https://dd-wrt.com/

    And here’s some advice on how to secure your home router, which is worth following if you want to make the life a potential intruder a bit more difficult.

    https://www.tomsguide.com/us/home-router-security,news-19245.html

     

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  • Tue, Oct 08, 2019 - 7:18pm

    #30

    GerrySM

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    Some replies to erroneous thinking ....

    I’m noticing some themes here:

    “AKGrannyWGrit” links to a video by nonentity James Corbett that questions climate science and suggests that it is “hubris” to imagine we can affect climate; I’ll let that go because it’s obviously nonsense.

    AO writes:

    Can you recall any historical incidents in modern history where ALL nations successfully shunned a single nation? I can’t … because it’s never happened

    Yes I can recall, and it has happened: South Africa and apartheid. There goes your argument down the drain.

    Davefairtex writes

    Sure. We’ll all shun China. Except those that won’t because they’ve been bribed. Or coerced.

    So your argument is that because there is a chance that some nation could possibly be bribed by China, therefore we should still do nothing about climate change because China is (supposedly) doing nothing about it? Illogical! And wrong: China at least signed and ratified the Paris Agreement, unlike the damned US, which has signalled its intention to withdraw under Trump! China is actually taking anthropogenic global heating very, very seriously, if only you’d bother doing some research.

     

     

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  • Tue, Oct 08, 2019 - 7:50pm

    Reply to #30
    ao

    ao

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    nice try but ...

    Yes I can recall, and it has happened: South Africa and apartheid. There goes your argument down the drain.

    Sorry Gerry but your attempted refutation is a specious one.  Not every country shunned South Africa (although, admittedly, most did) and apartheid ended for a very complex series of reasons, not just the shunning (i.e. sanctions).  And South Africa was and is at the opposite end of the economic and military power spectrum as China.  It’s an apple and oranges situation, like taming a house cat by physically restraining it versus attempting the same with a tiger.  And there was a whole lot more to my argument.  You’ll need to do better to convince me.

    As an aside, not that apartheid was good but now that you have black majority rule in South Africa, what do you have?  Massive emigration by whites, especially the most productive element of society.  White genocide being initiated by blacks, starting with the white farmers.  And the country has turned into a ****hole.  Likewise, shunning of China also has the potential for producing a debacle.

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  • Tue, Oct 08, 2019 - 11:49pm

    Reply to #30

    davefairtex

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    Gerry's reframe - reframed

    Gerry-

    So your argument is that because there is a chance that some nation could possibly be bribed by China, therefore we should still do nothing about climate change because China is (supposedly) doing nothing about it? Illogical! And wrong: China at least signed and ratified the Paris Agreement, unlike the damned US, which has signalled its intention to withdraw under Trump! China is actually taking anthropogenic global heating very, very seriously, if only you’d bother doing some research.

    Uh, no.  That’s not my argument.  That’s you doing a reframe on my argument, and then ridiculing your own reframe.   I’ll reframe the straw man back to my actual argument.  I’ll put the key bits in bold so you don’t miss them.

    So in your reframe, you said my argument was: “because there is a chance that some nation could possibly be bribed by China…”

    And now for my actual argument:

    I believe there is a 100% chance that politicians in every nation are currently being bribed by China.  Every nation.  Politicians in every nation are currently being bribed by China, starting from the US, and working their way down.

    These guys are smart. They have lots of money.  They are a superpower. They are much smarter and stronger than Russia ever was.  They saw how US corporations control the US Congress and Presidency, and they just followed that same path.  This is a very good ROI for those corporations.  Maybe $5 billion is all it costs them to own Washington.  For China, that’s chump change.  So they start with the US, and they work their way down.

    As for China “working hard on climate change”, I don’t think that’s what they are doing.  I think they are doing a Hirsch Report conversion, and reframing it to be “working on climate change.”

    Here’s the really fun part:

    I think we should do exactly the same thing China is doing.

    Did you get that?

    I just said, I think we should do the same thing that China is doing.

    As for China signing some document in Paris – they also signed a document vowing they would leave Hong Kong untouched until 2047.

    How’s that one working out?

    Two questions for you.

    1. Do you know the difference between doing a Hirsch Report conversion and “working on climate change?”
    2. More basically: do you even know about the Hirsch Report?

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  • Wed, Oct 09, 2019 - 12:02am

    Reply to #1

    peakaustria

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    online calculator

    You can play this assumption and with the eroie, CO2 and kWh per Barrel etc. with this online calculator (1 Twp is about 1000 Gwp PVeq) http://www.pv4.eu/globally-13-twp-of-photovoltaics-could-be-installed-in-2023-compared-to-the-world-energy-outlook_1935.html

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  • Wed, Oct 09, 2019 - 2:17am

    #31

    sand_puppy

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    Hirsch Report conversion

    Please point me to an explanation of the Hirsch Report and explain more fully how this can be used as a “conversion.”  I have never heard of this report nor how it might be used.  Please elaborate.

    —-

    Found one summary by Richard Heinberg (linked above)

    The [Hirsch] report’s Executive Summary begins with the following paragraph:

    The peaking of world oil production presents the U.S. and the world with an unprecedented risk management problem. As peaking is approached, liquid fuel prices and price volatility will increase dramatically, and, without timely mitigation, the economic, social, and political costs will be unprecedented. Viable mitigation options exist on both the supply and demand sides, but to have substantial impact, they must be initiated more than a decade in advance of peaking.

    The report’s authors were not asked to assess when the global peak is likely to occur; however they do survey the range of forecasts from optimists and pessimists alike, projecting a peak date anywhere from 2005 to 2037.

    The Hirsch report examines three scenarios: one in which mitigation efforts are not undertaken until global oil production peaks; a second in which efforts commence ten years in advance of peak; and a third in which efforts begin twenty years prior to the peak. Each scenario assumes a “crash program rate of implementation.” In the first case, the study concludes that peak will leave the world with a “significant liquid fuels deficit for more than two decades” that “will almost certainly cause major economic upheaval”; even with a ten-year lead time for mitigation efforts government intervention will be required and the world will experience a ten-year fuel shortfall. A crash program initiated twenty years ahead of the event will offer “the possibility” of avoiding a fuel shortfall. The report emphasizes repeatedly that both supply- and demand-side mitigation options will take many years to implement and will cost “literally trillions of dollars”; it also notes that “the world has never faced a problem like this.”

    The Hirsch report concludes that substantial mitigation of the economic, social, and political impacts of Peak Oil can come only from efforts both to increase energy supplies from alternative sources and to reduce demand for oil. With regard to the claim that efficiency measures by themselves will be enough to forestall dire impacts, Hirsch et al. note that, “While greater end-use efficiency is essential, increased efficiency alone will be neither sufficient nor timely enough to solve the problem. Production of large amounts of substitute liquid fuels will be required.” Further, “Mitigation will require a minimum of a decade of intense, expensive effort, because the scale of liquid fuels mitigation is inherently extremely large.” Hirsch, et al., also point out that “The problems associated with world oil production peaking will not be temporary, and past ‘energy crisis’ experience will provide relatively little guidance.”

    And a more worrisome note he concludes:

    Yet, half a year after its release, the Hirsch report is nowhere to be found. For several months it was archived, in PDF format, on a high school web site (http://www.hilltoplancers.org, Hilltop High School in Chula Vista, Calif.). On July 7 the report disappeared from that site. The Atlantic Council [SP note–this is Neocon Central]  (http://www.acus.org) is considering publishing the Hirsch report; however there is no projected date of release. When contacted, Dr. Hirsch replied that the document is “a public report, paid for and released by DOE NETL, and that it therefore could be reposted at will.” Project Censored has now posted the report in full.

    Looks like DaveF is onto something.

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  • Wed, Oct 09, 2019 - 3:42am

    #32

    davefairtex

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    Hirsch Report PDF link

    Courtesy of the wayback machine.  The Internet Is Forever.

    https://web.archive.org/web/20111216033653/http://www.acus.org/docs/051007-Hirsch_World_Oil_Production.pdf

    Looks like they really did try to stamp that report out.  “We have always been at war with Eastasia.”

    Perhaps the new generation really does think this is all about climate change.

    I guarantee the Chinese read that report cover to cover.  And then promptly started implementing their plan to remediate, 20 years ahead of peak.

    How are they doing?  Reasonably well, it would seem.  Chinese electric production:

    • 55% coal
    • 7.3% solar
    • 9.2% wind
    • 17.7% hydro.

    They have a fantastic national train network (I know, I’ve been on it), electric mass transit in – well in all the cities I went to, and now a few hundred thousand electric buses.  Its straight out of Hirsch.

    Of course they also have a million Muslims in concentration camps (something that Mr Hirsch didn’t recommend), but – gotta break a few eggs to make the omelette, I suppose.

    Maybe they see potential for social unrest coming as a result of peaking oil, and so they’re hurrying to get all that social credit/control into place before the big kaboom.

    And we have Armstrong saying the cycles indicate a movement of the world’s financial capital to the East.

    It does all kind of fit together.

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  • Wed, Oct 09, 2019 - 4:30am

    #33

    sand_puppy

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    Oligarchy's Response to Peak Oil Certainty (Hirsh Report)

    Just finished an hour long commute to work (3 gallons of gas) and had a chance to think about how I would respond were I an elite who wanted to ensure future comfort and power for myself and “my people” during the catastrophic disruption of post peak oil.

    1.  Get control of the oil resource.  Invade, buy, control.

    2.  Divest away from oil as one’s primary energy source.

    3.  Convince everyone else that there is no shortage (Saudi America, energy independence, the Shale Miracle, and all that).  This allow time to secure control.

    4.  Reengineer for conservation for the masses with personal jets for the elite.  (Fund Greta, make it a moral issue of Good versus Evil,  “4 legs good, 2 legs better”))

    5.  Prepare to lock down society with control systems anticipating that the vulgar masses will be resentful as this unfolds.  (Remove firearms–especially the very effective semi-auto rifles, track individuals’ location, identify loyalties, wrong thinking, control the avenues of discourse, identify networks of dissidents, establish the right of the oligarchy to inject the population with chemicals/drugs, institute security measures for control of movement (TSA, etc), suspend due process to allow imprisonment / detention without evidence–guilty of “anti-Soviet thinking” or just label as “a terrorist.”)

    What else am I missing?

     

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  • Wed, Oct 09, 2019 - 4:48am

    Reply to #33

    davefairtex

    Status Diamond Member (Offline)

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    missing...

    * astonishingly well-performing sports cars that use batteries (perfect to provide as status symbol/rewards to the toadies and factotums)

    * a medium-term potential for life in orbit

    * AI-enabled drones provide an always-loyal Pratorean Guard [1] as well as an untraceable hit squad to eliminate annoying dissidents.

    * robots to construct all those toys for the elites once the workers brains have rotted from phone (and opioid) addiction.

    * AI/big data/call monitoring to provide a data stream to pre-crime law enforcement.

    [1] assuming they don’t get hacked, of course.

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  • Wed, Oct 09, 2019 - 5:46am

    #34

    sand_puppy

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 1971

    1+

    Sequester novel energy sources

    I just watched Steven Greer’s Unacknowledged again last week on Netflix.

    Should I (hypothetically) get my hands on an extra-terrestrial craft, I would want to ensure that ONLY MY GROUP had access to these technologies while I learned to use them.

    • A secret development program outside control of the military and pesky governmental oversight.
    • Ensure that the public believed that such craft were non-sense.
    • blockade of any inquiry from governments
    • a funding source for development that comes from public coffers

    But, of course, that would be crazy and impossible.  😉

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  • Wed, Oct 09, 2019 - 6:29am

    #35

    thc0655

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    The Final Solution

    When you have perfected use of the “alien” technology and related weapons:

    1. Gradually allow the forbidden subject of UFOs to be revealed to and discussed by the public. Gradually allow military and civilian encounters and evidence to be released. Begin to build a mental capacity in the population (aka The Dirt People) to eventually accept the reality of UFOs.

    2. When the moment is right, stage a “War of the World’s” type of “alien” invasion and demand that the humans surrender to rule by the “aliens.” The technology and weapons the “aliens” deploy is so superior to current human technology (eg. stodgy aircraft carrier battle groups, stealth aircraft and hypersonic missiles) most human militaries surrender after a few very brief, very disastrous battles with the “aliens.”

    3. The “aliens” promise to be benevolent and allow the humans a limited amount of self rule in a global one world government staffed by elites chosen by the “aliens.” However the Alien Governor, who resides in geosynchronous orbit, retains the power to overrule any human decision and take any initiatives necessary to keep the peace and put the earth onto a sustainable path. Humans who cooperate are rewarded. Those who resist or complain are crushed. This helps the “aliens” achieve a sustainable earth population of 1 billion in three years.

    4. As always in these kinds of situations, small groups of dissenters and counter-revolutionaries form and go to ground. The “aliens” and the one world government work together to root these groups out and destroy them, for the good of the children and the whole earth. The “aliens” take a special interest in the groups claiming the “aliens” are really just human elites who copied alien technologies over the past 60 years and are attempting to take over the world for their own sociopathic purposes. The “aliens,” apparently, don’t like being disrespected, nor will they respond to human demands that they show themselves to the world to prove they are actually “aliens” and not mere humans hiding behind a veil of astounding technology.

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  • Wed, Oct 09, 2019 - 10:14am

    #36
    Penguin Will

    Penguin Will

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    I’m an old engine guy. Design and research, so I’m probably biased.

    That said I don’t think fully e-cars make much inroads unless it is through legislation. Hybrids are anywhere and always a decent idea. E-cars? Not sure they are going to make much noise unless we keep ratcheting down the emissions regulations. How many significant digits on the right side of zero until you are into the truly ridiculous?

    Don’t get me wrong, I think they will get better. BUT then you just bring in pneumatic valve-trains (like they’ve already done with VVT) and get another boost in power or efficiency. We always choose power in this country but we don’t have to. If you need it bring in turbos on even more engines.

    IOW for the near to medium term there is already the work done to improve IC engines and keep them a leg up on fully electric cars. To the point where fully electric is only marginally better in a carbon footprint comparison. A good hybrid will give you 90% of the gains with a much more accessible platform.

    I could be wrong but I just don’t see fully electric cars replacing what we’ve got unless governments step in and force the change.

    Will

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  • Wed, Oct 09, 2019 - 2:53pm

    Reply to #16
    marti61

    marti61

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    Food and fossil fuel etc.

    You may want to study the Cuban experience- when the Soviets collapsed how did Cuba deal with no oil/ fertilizer etc? Since they have socialized medicine etc. records were kept. The population lost weight but out of cold hard need moved into bio-logical agriculture. Traction animal of choice was oxen which surprised me. Anyway, a book on how it went down you may want to check out- ‘Sustainable Agriculture and Resistance-Transforming food Production in Cuba’ being the most readable to me. Lots of charts etc. You may also want to check out ‘The Theory of Peasant Co-operatives’ by Viktor Danilov, which is an analysis of how rural areas can survive. Of course we don’t think in these terms because its not profitable for the Ag Industrial Complex narrative fairy tale.

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  • Wed, Oct 09, 2019 - 3:27pm

    Reply to #16

    Mots

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 86

    food and fossil fuel

    Marti61
    Thanks for the book citation, I have to read it.  I would add to your list regarding how Cuba dealt with massive drop in oil supplies, the DVD “The Power of Community: How Cuba Survived Peak Oil.”  Basically Cubans responded by losing 10kg of body weight, farming became real popular, and small effort farming became much more economically attractive.  The Cuban experience is another example of a third world country that has valuable clues for how to deal with oil-weaning.

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  • Wed, Oct 09, 2019 - 4:26pm

    #37

    GerrySM

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    Hirsch

    As for China signing some document in Paris – they also signed a document vowing they would leave Hong Kong untouched until 2047.

    How’s that one working out?

    Two questions for you.

      1. Do you know the difference between doing a Hirsch Report conversion and “working on climate change?”
      2. More basically: do you even know about the Hirsch Report?

    I guarantee that I knew about it before you did. I was an oildrum contributor from the early days. The climate issue is MUCH more urgent and important than the peak oil issue. Peak oil is probably still a decade away, or more, because there are many areas of the globe that have not even begun to frack oil and gas the way the US has. So take the US “miracle” of tight oil and multiply that by 20, and you begin to get some idea of the potential oil supplies out there. Peak oil will never occur because we will have to abandon oil burning long before the resource runs out.

    As for China and the Paris Agreement: you are simply wrong about China’s attitude to climate. Do some proper research. China is acutely aware of how damaging global heating will be, especially to their own country, which is dependent on glacial water resources.

    https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2019/04/17/climate/melting-glaciers-globally.html

    A lot of the planned coal projects in China and India are effectively dead in the water. In India, they are commercially dead, no one in their right mind is going to build them…In China, economically, it makes no sense as they already have way too much capacity.

    The Chinese government is enacting a national carbon trading scheme and has announced waves of cancellations and restrictions on new coal power, in response to air pollution and climate concerns. Overall, its pipeline of plants being built or planned has shrunk more than 70% since 2016.

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  • Wed, Oct 09, 2019 - 5:30pm

    #38

    Mots

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 18 2012

    Posts: 86

    4+

    what kind of equipment and network could keep us connected after the internet is shut down

    Sandpuppy
    You made a few posts about communication and ham radio as a solution to shutting down internet/cell phone service.

    I reviewed your questions with another ham friend who happens to be the comm officer of a prepper group in the northeast, and here is his response:
    When conducting comm exercises and training, almost no one is willing to learn about how to use the equipment and ends up using their cell phone to call each other.
    For local communications when internet/cell phone service is disrupted, private ham club repeaters are used in the VHF/UHF (line of sight) frequencies using a hand held whereas Baofeng (less than 50$) seems the most popular (note: “techguy” disagreed with this conclusion the last time I posted on this topic, so see his posting for additional enlightenment since his amateur radio experience seems to differ).
    “Echolink” is a popular software used to communicate where one end of the communication does not have access to a cell tower (Echolink allows one to get onto a digital repeater system from the internet).
    During a grid down/internet down scenerio, regular ham radio will be jammed up and not useful, at least for voice communications.
    However, the digital modes (communication by keyboard texting) will be a good option.
    Due to low solar activity, world wide communications are much more difficult now, and for the next few years.
    I conclude the following: to prepare for internet/cellphone down situation, it is best to learn to use a digital mode ham radio method such as the popular PSK31 or the very reliable Olivia and practice with friends from different geographical areas.

    I foresee a day when people receive reliable news from overseas that avoid the censors in America, something like a Radio Free Europe but for America (Radio Free America).
    As many are aware, China is ahead of the US in controlling information.  It is surprising how many websites (including this one) are blocked in China.  Although many Chinese use VPN to get around that, VPN is illegal and it is only a matter of time before that route is blocked.  Perhaps we can learn by watching the situation in China.

     

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  • Wed, Oct 09, 2019 - 8:52pm

    Reply to #37

    davefairtex

    Status Diamond Member (Offline)

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    awesome

    GerrySM-

    Well given that you know about all the issues, your decision to try the reframe-and-ridicule attack on me is a bit puzzling.  Usually only lazy or ignorant people use that strategy, and on closer examination, you appear to be neither lazy nor ignorant.

    Well, no matter.

    Now that we have finally established factual common ground, I fear we must agree to disagree.  Your interpretation of “what motivates China” is different than mine.  To me, they are entirely motivated by getting rich, responding to their people who are intensely irritated by the dreadful levels of air pollution, and executing on that conversion plan.  Their “climate change” fig leaf that you find convincing – well, they’re good at convincing people.  You certainly bought it, and you seem to be better informed than most.

    Do you live in China?  Nearby China?  Just how extensive is your experience in country?  Or in the region?

    As for them signing that document in Paris – they sign a lot of documents.  Documents signed by the CCP mean less than nothing.  Since you are well informed, you no doubt know about the concept of “promise fatigue” when applied to China.

    So we still need to execute that mitigation program.  As you said yourself, if peak oil is 10 years out … memory test here … how long did Hirsch say we had to execute on the plan for it to work properly?

    And might I point out – fracking is still unprofitable.  There’s a reason why the rest of the world isn’t rushing off to do it.  That’s because it doesn’t make money/its very low EROEI.  Fracking happens in the US because – my belief – the US government supports it behind the scenes in order to buy time for conversion.

    If you have any information on the amount of fracking going on elsewhere – presumably that would also show up as climbing output in those nations – I’d love to hear about it.

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  • Thu, Oct 10, 2019 - 8:33am

    Reply to #28
    psebby

    psebby

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    Posts: 4

    Will contact you

    Mots, I’m happy to share more info about my Local Wifi.  I’ll contact you via your personal web site that you mention in your profile.

    Paul

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  • Sat, Oct 12, 2019 - 7:52am

    #39

    Chris Martenson

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    A Question and a Response on the Weight of Carbon Dioxide Released...

    I received this question via email and thought I would provide my response to everyone:

    In your zero hedge article, you quoted Roger Pilke exactly (I doubled checked his publication and verified this myself). I have a problem with burning something and producing approximately 3 times more carbon dioxide emissions.

    11,743 Mtoe burned produces 33,700 Million tones of carbon dioxide emissions.

    Don’t get me wrong, I agree with your article. I just couldn’t get my head around these figures.

    [Dear ____],

    thanks for reaching out.  The answer lies in the math and chemistry involved.

    Let’s take the easiest example – burning natural gas.  The chemical formula of natural gas is 1 carbon and 4 hydrogens – or CH4 in chemical nomenclature.

    Carbon has an atomic weight of 12.  Hydrogen = 1. 

    Add that all up and the CH4 molecule weighs in at 16.

    CO2 is what results when you “burn” (oxydize) CH4.  It consists of one carbon atom and 2 oxygen atoms.

    The entire balanced  formula for the “burning” is:  2(O2) + CH4 –> (1)CO2 + (2)H2O

    That is, one molecule of natural gas plus two molecules of oxygen results in one CO2 and 2 water molecules.

    Let’s now introduce that Oxygen has an atomic weight of 16.

    Where we had one molecule of CH4 weighing 16 (12+1+1+1+1) we end up with one molecule of CO2 (or C + O + O) weighing (12)C + (16)O + (16)O = 48

    That gives us a ratio of 48/16 = 3

    And that is how one ton of natural gas, when burned, becomes 3 tons of CO2

    The formulas for coal and oil are slightly different due to differing bonds and such, but they’re not that dissimilar and all hover around 3.

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  • Sat, Oct 12, 2019 - 1:58pm

    Reply to #31

    Dick

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    Where is the Hirsch Report?

    Sand_puppy, All 91 pages:  https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/939271

    The Heinberg reference dates back to 2005. Hilltoplancers.org domain is for sale – no report. Project Censored also no report.

    It’s in the public domain with the lead page being https://www.osti.gov/biblio/939271 which has the intro and abstract and link referenced above. OSTI = U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

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  • Tue, Oct 15, 2019 - 4:43am

    #40
    tonysmyth

    tonysmyth

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    Excellent article

    I’ll be cutting and pasting this entire article, if only for the exact numbers given – very convincing.

    There’s no way about it, we are going to have to live with far less energy. What the article didn’t mention is that the single best thing we could do to reduce carbon emissions and to become energy efficient. That means zero carbon houses, heat pumps, root cellars, machines such as far less energy, etc etc. Not sure why this is rarely mentioned as one of the solutions but it is key.

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  • Sun, Nov 10, 2019 - 7:57am

    #41

    David

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    Posts: 28

    1+

    Nonsensical take down of Green Energy

    I don’t watch broadcast TV, so perhaps I missed some promise made by Bernie to make the entire world use only green energy?  If he did, I still wouldn’t use his promise as the basis of a take down of green energy.

    Every rational article I have read explaining why the world can or cannot get to CO2 neutral by 2050 always includes assumptions about energy usage reductions/energy efficiency and CO2 sequestration (sinks), and most include Nuclear plants (a definite must to be sure).

    Now, all of that isn’t going to happen by 2050 either, so no argument with that conclusion.  But where did replacing all the MTOE usage only with green energy goal come?

    I understand why Pielke Jr did that, because he, like his father (also a UC Boulder prof), are known climate change deniers and probably need to be overly sensational to get published by the MSM.   But you doing it too is an unpleasant surprise.

     

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