Friday, May 01, 2009

We May Be Past Peak -- And?

Gail Tverberg posted this article at The Oil Drum in which she argues we may have passed peak, and the interconnectedness of energy and finance may well conspire to keep us from rebounding the way we might like, i.e. a resumption of BAU. There are numerous comments of course discussing whether she has right, wrong or somewhere in the middle. My view - Gail scares me. She is more of a doomer than I am, and she works with numbers and does more analysis than I do. I don't know how you put a bright, shiny spin on the way she collates that information. We are both big picture thinkers, but I have to say that her thoroughness leads me to worry.

On a different note, the Drum also posted this interview with David MacKay, an English physicist whose self published book, Sustainable Energy - Without Hot Air is making quite a splash. You can download it for free (PDF) if you are so inclined, either the whole thing or just pieces. The interview is worth reading.

1 comment:

The North Coast said...

Prominent petroleum experts Ken Deffeyes, Colin Campbell, and Bob Simmons place the peak between 2005 and 2008.

We are already beginning to see the dislocations resulting from this, even though it's hard to connect the dots. People might not think that the collapse of the interstate bridge in Minneapolis, the dam failure at Johnson Park in MO, or the utter failure of federal, state, and local authorities to deal effectively with the disaster in New Orleans, are related, but to me, these events are early warnings of systems failure.

The unraveling of the financial markets was not in itself a result of the peak, but the financialization of our linked economies, and resulting global scams that resulted in the collapse were most certainly tied to it, in that we have turned to running financial scams in the place of industrial productivity. As we head down the slope and more job niches disappear, expect the scams to be more elaborate and involve more industries.