Maybe the world won't end after all

by E-Ville Librarian@evpl on Wednesday, August 13 2008, 10:07am. Viewed 665 times.

Ever heard of Hubbert's Peak?  No it isn't a mountain in the Rockies.  It is a logistical theory that we have passed the peak of oil production and from here will continue to decline until we are in another Dark Age.  While it is true that such a peak more than likely exists, and we may have passed it already, something tells me that mankind may have a few tricks up its collective sleeve.  Case in point is a post at the Tech blog Engadget.  According to this article, researchers at the Departmant of Energy's Idaho National Labaratory have created an "antenna" which can harvest 80% of the energy from infared rays.  Not too shabby, especially compared to traditional solar panels.  Hit the link for more info.

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Bufkinite@evpl wrote
on Monday, August 18 2008, 9:42am

Hubbert's Curve is actually a curve established back in 1949 by petroleum geologist M. King Hubbert, and refined by him throughout the 50s and 60s using information on US and world oil reserves, rates of production, & apparent rates of consumption.  In 1956 he concluded that the oil production in the US would peak sometime between 1966 & 1972.  Well, it peaked (@ 11.3 million barrels a day) in 1970.  Other aspects of the curve established by Hubbert - world oil production peak, and world consumption patterns- have proven equally reliable.

More on "peak oil" and its consequences can be found in James Howard Kunstler's prescient book The Long Emergency.  I don't believe that a "Dark Age" is necessarily in the offing, but I don't think we should blinding adopt a "technology will save us" attitude either.  Especially if doing so allows most of us keep our heads in the sand.