smkettner
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Re: World Energy Use - There's No Tomorrow

Mon Apr 30, 2012 4:06 pm

I understand the example. My point was that we will not hit a wall such as the volume of the bottle. Exponential growth will slow like the top of a bell curve rather than immediately revert to a sustainable level at half or less of current consumption. It will be a tough transition. Life is very difficult today for many many people. That group will expand even as we campain to end the strife. I don't know if there will be a preferred place to be. There will always be a tomorrow for some as they make the transition, many will not.
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klapauzius
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Re: World Energy Use - There's No Tomorrow

Mon Apr 30, 2012 4:12 pm

AndyH wrote:Guys, before we get into a fusion tangent, let's remember that we can solve ALL of our current problems - everything listed in the video, for example, with ZERO NEW TECH. Everything we need is on the planet right now - all we have to do is pull it out of the box (ok, some we'll have to make and box more of first ;)) and then put the tools to work.
I think we are way past the back-to-stone-age (or equivalent) point without condemning millions to die of starvation. I think the video presents some viable solutions (but does not call them that).
In any case, we have to transition to a sustainable energy economy and maintain our current levels at least. This requires some innovation, but not too much to be impossible.

I dont know where people get this absurd idea of geometric or exponential growth, it just is not possible in a finite system (such as the earth). Even bacteria stop growing eventually, because of boundary conditions.

As for the world population, we already experience a slow in growth rates (I think peak growth was in the 50s or 60s).

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Re: World Energy Use - There's No Tomorrow

Mon Apr 30, 2012 4:22 pm

AndyH wrote:
Barter and local currency is happening all over the world as we speak - including in a number of places in the US - and it's working well!
Just try to imagine Silicon Valley with barter and local currency....That is not going to work for more than a low-tech medieval (at best) civilization.
You can embed it into a highly developed civilization as ours and dream it could work, but try e.g. paying the radiologist in India, who just examined the images from your latest routine checkup, with the promise of a barrel of apples or an hour of carpentry work...

We need many people to make our civilization work, and they simply cant be "local".

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Re: World Energy Use - There's No Tomorrow

Mon Apr 30, 2012 4:53 pm

I found the first quarter of the video to be interesting and relevant about peak oil and energy use. After that, I got a strong impression that population control was the ultimate message of this video. I didn't like it.
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Re: World Energy Use - There's No Tomorrow

Mon Apr 30, 2012 5:02 pm

kubel wrote:I found the first quarter of the video to be interesting and relevant about peak oil and energy use. After that, I got a strong impression that population control was the ultimate message of this video. I didn't like it.
Sorry. Unfortunately, it's our number one problem - the single problem that is supporting all the other challenges we face.

I know it's depressing - I just finished my third semester of an undergrad environmental science program and I'm spending more time under my desk in the fetal position than I'm comfortable admitting. ;)

We just blasted through 7 billion souls on the planet - and we can't** feed a full 1 billion of them, much less give them a house in the burbs with two cars!

edit
**sorry... "...with our current methods..." ;)
Last edited by AndyH on Mon Apr 30, 2012 7:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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TickTock
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Re: World Energy Use - There's No Tomorrow

Mon Apr 30, 2012 5:36 pm

Everyone going to self-reliance cannot happen without a massive die-off. 600M acres of farm-able land in the world. 0.25-10 acres required per person for subsistence farming (depending on the availability of water and quality of the land). Even if we assume all of it is prime land (0.25/person) and don't consider the long-term impact of destroying natural habitat, that means the most people the planet can support through this model is 2.4B. So very conservatively, there's already 4.4B too many people for this to work.

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Re: World Energy Use - There's No Tomorrow

Mon Apr 30, 2012 5:44 pm

klapauzius wrote:... I dont know where people get this absurd idea of geometric or exponential growth, it just is not possible in a finite system (such as the earth). Even bacteria stop growing eventually, because of boundary conditions.
Sure - but do we want to go there? After all, we're not talking about the bacteria or deer population having meetings to hand out birth control, are we? ;)

The reason environmental scientists and ecologists and biologists use that 'absurd idea' is because it is happening all over the planet as we speak.

Image
Environment 7th Edition, Raven, P173. Reindeer population study on one of Alaska's Pribilof Islands in the Bearing Sea.
klapauzius wrote:As for the world population, we already experience a slow in growth rates (I think peak growth was in the 50s or 60s).
While the RATE has slowed, the actual growth is still climbing - and yes, it's still exponential. In financial terms, think daily compounding...
CIA wrote:World [Growth Rate] 1.096%
note: this rate results in about 145 net additions to the worldwide population every minute or 2.4 every second (2012 est.)
https://www.cia.gov/library/publication ... /2002.html

This really is the significance of the bottle analogy and the earlier threads that mentioned Dr. Bartlett's video. The population curve doesn't 'nose over' until we get enough birth control scattered around the planet to hit a zero % growth rate.

At our current 1.096% growth rate, we DOUBLE the world's population in 63.59 years - that's more than 14 billion by 2075.

http://www.worldometers.info/world-population/
http://www.miniwebtool.com/doubling-time-calculator/
Last edited by AndyH on Mon Apr 30, 2012 5:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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AndyH
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Re: World Energy Use - There's No Tomorrow

Mon Apr 30, 2012 5:55 pm

TickTock wrote:Everyone going to self-reliance cannot happen without a massive die-off. 600M acres of farm-able land in the world. 0.25-10 acres required per person for subsistence farming (depending on the availability of water and quality of the land). Even if we assume all of it is prime land (0.25/person) and don't consider the long-term impact of destroying natural habitat, that means the most people the planet can support through this model is 2.4B. So very conservatively, there's already 4.4B too many people for this to work.
Based on what farming methods?

Consider Russia's family farms (dachas) for one data point:
http://www.cinram.umn.edu/afta2005/pdf/Sharashkin.PDF

(Much of the data in the above paper can be found with a 'slight accent' ;) in the first 20 minutes of this video:)


And look to Permaculture, food forests, edge effects, etc. for another view.

Those that are working with the planet to grow food in sustainable ways consider 'agriculture' to be one of mankind's most damaging inventions to date.
http://www.barkingfrogspermaculture.org/PDC_ALL.pdf

Watch the first six minutes of this and see of your definition of 'farmland' changes:



edit...
PS... What's the United State's number one cultivated crop?

Answer: Grass. 40 million acres of lawn.
http://www.usnews.com/usnews/culture/ar ... 16lawn.htm

In Dr. Sharashkin's talk, he points out that Russian's Dachniks grow 51% of the country's food on 19.7 million acres (7%) of marginal land... In one 110-day growing season. ;)

Another edit...sorry

Here's a view from closer to home - Joel Salatin, 3rd generation Virginia Farmer, and author of "Folks, This Ain't Right" among other books - wrote this article in 2010:
http://www.acresusa.com/toolbox/reprint ... alatin.pdf
Make no mistake, if we had had a Manhattan Project to capitalize on Howard and Voisin, not only would we have fed the world during that time, but today we would not have a Rhode Island-size dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico. We would not have lost half of Iowa’s topsoil in a mere 100 years. We would not have degenerated the landscape with three-legged salamanders and infertile frogs.

Add now to that body of knowledge the work of Carey Reams, William Albrecht, Allan Savory, Lee Fryer, Fletcher Sims, Phil Callahan, permaculture, and the Acres U.S.A. hall of fame and our side has not only caught up with the chemical pushers, we’re lapping them. We eco-farmers do not have to apologize for anything. We built the knowledge, developed the protocols, paid for the distribution when the USDA pooh-poohed everything we were doing. It still does, assuming that irradiation, genetic prostitution, pasteurization, sterile food, and robotic machines will save us.
Edit...reprint is no longer available on the acres usa site. It is located here:
http://www.soilassociation.org/motherea ... -the-world
Last edited by AndyH on Tue Nov 12, 2013 9:47 pm, edited 8 times in total.
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klapauzius
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Re: World Energy Use - There's No Tomorrow

Mon Apr 30, 2012 6:11 pm

AndyH wrote:
At our current 1.096% growth rate, we DOUBLE the world's population in 63.59 years - that's more than 14 billion by 2075.
14 billion by 2075, its not going to happen. Because there is no exponential growth. You cannot take current rates and simply extrapolate them.
Take a look at this figure
http://www.google.com/publicdata/explor ... rowth+rate" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

The growth rate is subject to change and it is dropping.

Just 30 years ago if you had made the same prognosis for 2075, you would have come to 23.7 billion.
If you had done the "exponential" calculation in 1972, you would have come to 29.7 billion in 2075.

So which number is it going to be? 14 billion (2012), 18.6 billion (1992), 23.7 billion (1982) or 29.7 billion (1972)?

Taking the current growth rate trend it is going to be significantly less than 14 billion.
Needless to say, mankind is not going the way elks and bacteria go.
More wealth and education lead to less population growth. Ultimately resulting in stagnating or shrinking populations.
Problem solved, and in the process we have gotten richer and better educated.
The real problem is energy, since even at slowing population growth, we will use up the non-renewable fairly quickly,
but it can be solved, and fairly painless too.

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Re: World Energy Use - There's No Tomorrow

Mon Apr 30, 2012 6:30 pm

klapauzius wrote:
AndyH wrote:
At our current 1.096% growth rate, we DOUBLE the world's population in 63.59 years - that's more than 14 billion by 2075.
14 billion by 2075, its not going to happen. Because there is no exponential growth.
Sorry, this is incorrect. The growth is clearly exponential, though as you point out the RATE is changing. It's not the growth RATE that's eating all the potatoes - it's the 2.4 new people on the planet EACH SECOND that want to eat. ;)

Image
Source: http://www.globalchange.umich.edu/globa ... n_pop.html
klapauzius wrote:You cannot take current rates and simply extrapolate them.
Take a look at this figure
http://www.google.com/publicdata/explor ... rowth+rate" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

The growth rate is subject to change and it is dropping.

Just 30 years ago if you had made the same prognosis for 2075, you would have come to 23.7 billion.
If you had done the "exponential" calculation in 1972, you would have come to 29.7 billion in 2075.

So which number is it going to be? 14 billion (2012), 18.6 billion (1992), 23.7 billion (1982) or 29.7 billion (1972)?
It's all of them...or none.

Image
Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_population
klapauzius wrote:Taking the current growth rate trend it is going to be significantly less than 14 billion.
Needless to say, mankind is not going the way elks and bacteria go.
More wealth and education lead to less population growth. Ultimately resulting in stagnating or shrinking populations.
Problem solved, and in the process we have gotten richer and better educated.
Did you catch the part that we're already over 1.4 Earth's TODAY? We don't have time to sit back and wait for sub-Saharan Africa to reach Western European economic levels! (With or without a 'war' on women and/or contraception!)
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