Peak Oil is You

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Page added on August 26, 2011

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New German Army report on peak oil

Public Policy

The military spends a great deal of planning for different contingencies.  The rest of the time is spent training and doing exercises in preparation for the various scenarios they have planned for.  And, yes they do on occasion go off to war, most recently for extended periods of time.

I find it interesting that I’ve seen two reports now in recent years on things not specific to war fighting, but addressing strategic issues.  The first of those was the 2007 US Military report on the impacts of climate change It called out the types of social instability that can be expected as the population of the world continues to grows, land mass disappears with sea rise and our ability to feed ourselves diminishes and social unrest destabilizes nations leading to more acts of terrorism.

Now there is a German Army report on peak oil, Review of Bundeswehr Report on peak oil: Section 2.2. Tipping Point (Nov. 2010) The premise, which I believe is true, is that our world is living a very fine balance between having enough resources and running out.  Oil being one commodity that is not going to be replenished and will only be exhausted.  This is a type of situation that you cannot “drill baby drill” your way out of.  The expansion of economies and the populous nations of India and China will suck up all the oil there is.  Lack of a national energy policy will be a history lesson in the books for future generations to read.  Economic collapse and social unrest is again the prognosis for the future.

I do believe it might be possible to innovate our way out of where we are today by harnessing other energy sources like the sun.  But, until that happens we are in jeopardy of boxing ourselves in with no easy way out.  Here in the USA we have never had to face the issue of running out of natural resources–but we will.  Oil is one commodity and water is the other one I see looming on the horizon, especially in the West.

Interestingly my blog post on Preparing for the riots of 2030 struck a nerve with people.  It is singularly the most popular blog post I’ve ever had.  Some commented that it won’t take that long to get to the point before we have major riots in our urban areas.  My premise in that blog posting was about the disparity of income and the lack of upward mobility coming home to roost.  I think you can add a shortage of resources to that list that can accelerate and acerbate the feeling of hopelessness.

So, as emergency managers we will be dealing with too much water in some places (flooding) and not enough water in others (drought).  Either way, job security I guess, but I’d rather have a happier future than that.

Emergency Mgmt

5 Comments on "New German Army report on peak oil"

  1. pike on Sat, 27th Aug 2011 6:06 am 

    2030 will not happen dont try and spin long term crap on everyone to confuse the hell out of them.

    Riots are a problem here and now. Go fish.

  2. BillT on Sat, 27th Aug 2011 12:15 pm 

    Too many ‘alternate’ or ‘renewable’ energy sources rely on oil at some point in their manufacture/installation/maintenance. Even they will soon not be available. Some men smarter than I have said years ago, that if we didn’t start to replace oil with other sources at least 20 years PRIOR to peak oil, we would never make it. Well here we are, PAST peak oil and just thinking about alternate energy sources. Too little too late. Collapse is coming…

  3. Ian Cooper on Sat, 27th Aug 2011 3:09 pm 

    This report is hardly ‘new’. I saw this ‘new’ report early this year. It’s from November 2010 for goodness sake!

  4. Kenz300 on Sat, 27th Aug 2011 5:04 pm 

    Getting fuel to the American troops in Afghanistan has caused many deaths because of the convoys being ambushed. The American military needs to come to grips with the unsustainable use of energy to support their operations. It is time for the American military to speak loud and clear about Peak Oil and its impact.

  5. Rick Munroe on Mon, 29th Aug 2011 12:50 am 

    I agree. The approved version was released last Nov, but only in German and it has received almost no media attention, even in Germany.

    That means that most people, including emergency managers, will not be aware of it. To them, I guess this is news. I just hope that they recognize its significance and its implications.

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