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PeakOil is You

PeakOil is You

Energy Epiphany

General discussions of the systemic, societal and civilisational effects of depletion.

Energy Epiphany

Unread postby Polybius » Thu 06 Jan 2022, 12:58:24

Suffice it to say, today's headline news is "Bitcoin dives after Kazakhstan kills internet". So apparently 'Peak Oil' is the precursor to civil war and the breakup of the fabric of society everywhere since the rise in fuel prices is what sparked the protests that turned deadly in Kazakhstan. Sure, CIA might have had a role in that to disrupt China's BRI/RCEP but they can't start a color revolution in a pure vacuum, there had to have been already fertile grounds.

BIG PICTURE: since the first Planck era moment of the Big Bang, the arrow-of-time marching incessantly forwards means constant and eternal increases in Entropy, from low entropy state to higher entropy. (Cosmic inflation, not to be confused with the monetary sort) "Life" as we know it to be, (at least carbon based biological life that replicates on DNA) is merely a temporary localized low-entropy region/state at the expense of expelling more (higher) entropy elsewhere into the external system. Think of it as a refrigerator on a hot summers day, a small local region of cool temperatures at the expense of it expelling even more hot heat waste into the rest of the already warm outside environment.

They say nature abhors a vacuum, and so perhaps the optimization of maximization of equilibriumization of energy gradients (low to high entropy temporary transition process) is what gave rise to the evolution of life, and later to that of the evolution of intelligent life (including us homo sapiens species) eventually leading to revolutions of industrialization, age of fossil fuels, and the advent of computerized technologies to help assist in the more expedient exploitation and consumption of said aforementioned resources.

Energy underpins everything, it is energy and resources that power and run society and civilizations. Money, in all its forms,(be it Dollars, Yuan, gold, bitcoin, NFTs, stocks, real estate, bs artwork, commodities, etc) are merely nothing more than human social construct of abstract proxy tokens meant to symbolize and account for and help make sense of these energy flows and resource deposits/allocations.

It is human nature to go after the low-hanging fruit first. When the first barrel of oil was pumped out of the ground it took the energy equivalent of that one barrel of oil to pump, extract, and process and make useable an additional 100 barrels of the same oil, thereby yielding a EROEI (Energy Returned on Energy Invested) ratio of 100. In recent times the global EROEI of oil has dipped below 10; and it is still rapidly falling... Imagine an oil-tanker semi-truck that had to drive further and further each time it made a delivery of fuel (analogous to having to drill deeper and deeper for more sulfuric and lower energy quality/density hydrocarbons) and thereby burning more and more fuel in order to make each subsequent fuel delivery run in the first place, he is doing more and more work (driving longer hours) but delivering less and less net usable energy (even though nominally he brings back a full tank each time) and thus he is living in a society with ever falling productivity/ and less real wealth (purchasing power) even as he is working harder than ever before. I think many if not most people can personally relate to this, however very few people realize the root cause of the issue is actually a net decline in EROEI.

Net-usable-energy available for global society is falling sharply because the EROEI threshold keeps diminishing and is itself already falling off a cliff. Massive money printing is a mere futile attempt meant to 'mask' (pun intended) and cover up for this issue but it is akin to putting on a Band-Aid on one of the holes of the hull of a sinking ship when all is does is makes the water flow in faster from the other countless holes and gaps. Money is an abstract proxy for the ability of energy to do "work" in the future. Increasing the money supply while actual resources are all being depleted and whilst EROEI keeps diminishing means modern money is now almost entirely decoupled from what it was meant to represent. There is too much pumped up paper/abstract money out there and not enough real resources, net usable energy, nor the supply chains to effectuate and make good on it. It is all but a mathematical certainty that for the vast majority of people today that nest egg they saved up is not going to be there for them for the very simple fact that the global useable energy is gone... as the raw purchasing power of money was always almost entirely inflated by the availability of cheap and abundantly high-quality energy (and the “work/productivity multiplier effect” derived thereof) and the assumption that it would always be the case of remaining exercisable and actualizable into perpetuity...

The "work and productivity multiplier effect" of energy (the vast majority of which is primary energy of fossil fuels in all its forms) afforded to us by the inheritance bestowed upon mankind (billions of years of solar energy captured in the form of plant/phytoplankton/zooplankton/algae photosynthesis and converted into rapid-release capacitors of hydrocarbon based coal, oil and natural gas etc which we have consumed to near depletion in less than 150 years which is the mere blink of an eye) is diminishing commensurate to the global net decline in EROEI of said primary energy sources. This is why governments have to print more and more money while the living standards of their citizens continue to fall off a cliff. The United States, being the current global hegemony with its dollars still as global reserve currency, is no exception to this nor is it immune to the Energy Trap. In the last couple years alone it has printed more than 50% of all the dollars that has ever existed cumulatively in the entire 245 year history of the United States Empire. Yet the real living standards of the vast majority of Americans have continued to nosedive faster than ever before.

Money (or rather its real purchasing power) is really just a measure of the work/productivity multiplier-effect of energy (net usable primary energy), so therefore printing more money to try and account or make up for the decline of availability of remaining energy resources (and also the diminishing EROEI of these primary energy sources) is akin to opening the refrigerator door inside your home to try to cool down the house room temperature after your central AC failed. Locally your face might feel cooler but globally you are just making the entire house even hotter than before. Simply put, energy is what gives modern money most if not all of its real value, so printing more money to try to cover up for the decline in energy is really just locally masking up the issue while globally having zero effect or perhaps making it even worse. Alas, there are no thermodynamic free lunch nor free energy perpetual machines in the real world. This is nothing more than kicking the can down the road while making the eventual day of reckoning that much more worse. It has collectively allowed society to continue on business as usual until one day we find it’s too late to even attempt an energy transition in earnest and are already well inside the "Energy Trap" looking out, much akin to the fate of the inhabitants of Easter island. It is very probable that we have already crossed that point of inflection.

An intercontinental flight/trip from the US to EU is estimated to burn up to 100 gallons of gas (av fuel) per person for the round trip. One gallon of gas if burned efficiently yields as much energy as equivalent to 2 to 6 weeks of natural man muscle power. It would take four years to naturally accumulate the amount of energy needed to make such a cross ocean trip and yet most middle income American's can currently still purchase a ticket for the flight with less than a week's salary. During our ancestor's hunter and gatherer days everyone spent most of their time scavenging for food, it was only after the invention of agriculture that there was an net energy surplus (there was more than enough food so some members of society could spend their days working on other things) so that the surplus energy could be used for things like building Great Wall of China or the Pyramids in Egypt etc... But yet it wasn't until the discovery of coal/oil/NG approx ~150 years ago that human society and global human population and global economic activity really compounded exponentially.

In these modern times, on average for every calorie of food that we consume, roughly nine other additional calories of net energy went into the production and transportation of that food. In a very real sense, we are basically converting fossil fuels (fertilizers and pesticides are all byproducts of petroleum) into food in order to feed the vast majority of the global human population. Without the discover of fossil fuels and the advent of industrialization that relied upon it, the global population could never have grown exponentially from one billion to nearly 8 billion people in the mere span of slightly more than a century.

Even right now, with the US Federal minimum wage still at $7.25/hr, (where it’s been since 2009) even the lowest paid member of American society (even if it’s just sacking groceries into bags) can 'earn' enough money in an hour to purchase roughly two gallons of gas at his local gas station. Those two gallons of gasoline contains enough energy to be equal to 4 to 12 weeks of manual human muscle power/labor. This Kroger clerk is still tapping into the billion year sunlight inheritance. This immense "work and productivity multiplier effect" (in this case more than a factor of 224x times) of energy that we inherited from billions of years of captured sunlight compressed into the form of fossil fuels/hydrocarbons is the true reason why during the 70s a mere cashier working in a grocery store could afford to make a decent living with a nice house in the suburbs and comfortably raising a family of four. It is also the reason why that as energy becomes more scarce and EROEI continues to diminish that lower paid workers of society can no longer afford to even drive across town for their jobs and at the same time businesses cannot afford to increase real wages because their own "work and productivity multiplier" has drastically decline as well, hence the seemingly contradictory juxtaposition of massive so-called labor shortages yet abysmal real unemployment rates all at the same time. This is why the US middle class has been effectively wiped out and tent cities are popping up everywhere in America at an ever increasingly and soon to be exponential rate. It’s not a stretch to imagine that concentration camps are right around the corner especially once the US dollar loses its global reserve currency status and all the privileges that came with it.

None of the renewables are energy dense enough (high threshold of EROEI) to power modern society at scale and certainly not the kind of globalized world we have become accustomed to... for example solar has an energy payback of 2 to 3 years currently... that means for the first three years of a solar project you have net sunk energy into it and don't make an energy profit until after that period. Then after ten years or so you have to expend even more resources and energy to replace/maintain the panels and turbines. Whereas oil has an energy payback period of exactly zero days, you can use it immediately to provide net positive energy and it is both a means of energy and storage of energy. The problem with solar and wind is that it needs energy storage, and there are not enough lithium, copper, nor rare-earth in the world to be able to build enough batteries to store enough energy to scale to the entire world's current energy consumption levels even if we could achieve 100% renewable sources... (solar, wind, hydro, etc)

Currently all of the renewables that are so-called 'break even' are actually dual-subsidized, the first subsidy is the financial one by the governments of the world and the second is the invisible energy subsidy of the current existing infrastructure powered by primary energy source of fossil fuels. Any attempt to globally scale up the renewables to anywhere near a meaningful extent will by definition mean the end of economic subsidies as well as the end of reliance on the use of cheap high density fossil energy to build out these renewable infrastructures in the very first place!

The "energy payback time” of renewables means it will incur a permanent 'energy taxation' on all work/productivity/interactions in society somewhere between 20% to 40%, and this a thermodynamic physical energy taxation that comes before any government taxation (resulting in a total collapse of global economies and permanent macroeconomic depression everywhere) and that is even assuming there are enough raw resources to scale up (and later maintain) renewables to replace fossil fuels in mass in the first place. (there is not)

Now that the printing money game is soon to be over, the next stage is the clamping down on freedom of movement and the artificial suppression of consumption demand by way of covert destabilization of global supply chains. After all, you cannot spend your money on goods and services that aren't available to purchase in the first place. When push comes to shove, as much of the world undergoes a forced self-cannibalization in a very scale invariant fashion, it is the so-called discretionary activities that are first to be chopped, already including things like luxury cruises, tourism/vacations and air travel, going to bars or clubs, or even buying expensive graphics cards for pc gaming machines, etc etc etc... One way or another, in the name of endless booster shots and vaccine passports, or mandatory individual carbon caps, before long whatever money that you have left saved up that hasn't already been diluted and inflated and taxed away by then will still be worthless as it’s no longer able to buy the things or services that you want nor take you to the places that you wish to go...

As that one 'New World Order' person said, by the end of this decade you will own nothing, have no privacy, be able to go nowhere, and "be happy" about it.
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Re: Energy Epiphany

Unread postby AdamB » Thu 06 Jan 2022, 14:59:58

Gee. Energy is important. Feel free to use my abbreviation of your tome in case the expected happens when pitching it to others. Example provided, in case you are as dense as what you wrote.

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Re: Energy Epiphany

Unread postby Outcast_Searcher » Thu 06 Jan 2022, 15:06:13

SO much babbling. No citations. But lots of preaching.

As if crypto weakness would have nothing to do with say, rising interest rates and a general move away from risky / speculative assets (like tech stocks, especially those without current growing earnings), in general, in reaction this week. :roll:
Given the track record of the perma-doomer blogs, I wouldn't bet a fast crash doomer's money on their predictions.
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Re: Energy Epiphany

Unread postby AdamB » Thu 06 Jan 2022, 15:51:09

Outcast_Searcher wrote:SO much babbling. No citations. But lots of preaching.


I agree. You didn't even reference the most basic calculation of EROEI, or how it has decreased and folks who used to it to predict something (Charles Hall in 1981 perhaps?) failed. You certainly didn't mention how the value of BTUs matters in this calculation, as economic activity is based on $$, not BTUs, otherwise you would make the following trade, which I would make with you, and it would prove your entire point. Should you accept.

I will trade you, BTU for BTU, a BTU of sunlight from my backyard, for a BTU of gasoline. Or crude oil if you'd prefer. I will deposit a steel 100bbl oil field quality tank at the base of your driveway into which you can put these BTUs of gasoline or crude, and I will allow you to collect the BTUs raining down on my backyard any way you'd like. You will keep the photons, and I the crude or gasoline.

If you can't make that trade, thank you for proving why our economic isn't dictated by EROEI. And you don't have the cajones to even make the most basic bet on the concept because you know how and why you would lose. It is that obvious. Are you trapped in this false equivalency for some reason? Or are just generally ignorant? And why does this stuff continue? Because claiming peak oils didn't work for doomers, so they decided to make up crap and see if others unfamiliar with...physics, science, etc etc, could be hoodwinked by something far more opaque. Additionally, this verbal diarrhea wasn't meant to be serious, but fits right in with your previous posting topics and misunderstandings of...well.,,the real world, but I imagine it sounds like great pontificating gibberish to Qanon supporters, conspiracy fans, those already inclined to belief systems requiring the denial of science, logic and analytical thinking, etc etc.
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Re: Energy Epiphany

Unread postby Doly » Thu 06 Jan 2022, 16:52:48

OK, I see that you are attempting to express the belief system of the Church of Peak Oil, or something along those lines. I don't have issues with the general gist of it, but there are several points that I do take issue with:

Money, in all its forms,(be it Dollars, Yuan, gold, bitcoin, NFTs, stocks, real estate, bs artwork, commodities, etc) are merely nothing more than human social construct of abstract proxy tokens meant to symbolize and account for and help make sense of these energy flows and resource deposits/allocations.


This leaves out one of the main uses of money, which is to pay wages. Traditional economists said that the value of money comes from two places: labor and land (including agriculture and mining). You are claiming that money is merely used to distribute resources and energy, and ignoring the money transactions around paying for somebody's work. And the value put on a particular piece of work isn't very well correlated with the amount of energy needed to produce it.

Increasing the money supply while actual resources are all being depleted and whilst EROEI keeps diminishing means modern money is now almost entirely decoupled from what it was meant to represent.


I think you are correct in thinking that increasing money supply in an environment of diminishing availability of energy and other resources can be problematic, though I'd rather leave the finer financial points to people who are more knowledgeable about financial issues than myself. The reason, however, is not the vague reason you have stated. The reason is that energy, being essential, cannot be allowed to be below a certain fraction of the economy, or somebody could corner the market for energy, and nobody wants an essential item to be in the hands of a very small number of people. If the total amount of energy available is flat or declining, and under the assumption that central banks do their job of keeping prices roughly stable, that means that the overall economy must stop growing soon after reaching the energy peak.

it was only after the invention of agriculture that there was an net energy surplus (there was more than enough food so some members of society could spend their days working on other things) so that the surplus energy could be used for things like building Great Wall of China or the Pyramids in Egypt etc...


Nitpick: Gobekli Tepe was a pretty impressive temple built before agriculture. But in general terms, correct.

In these modern times, on average for every calorie of food that we consume, roughly nine other additional calories of net energy went into the production and transportation of that food. In a very real sense, we are basically converting fossil fuels (fertilizers and pesticides are all byproducts of petroleum) into food in order to feed the vast majority of the global human population.


I did check that claim a long time ago, and most of those nine additional calories went into transportation. So, if people started eating a lot more local food, a huge part of the problem disappears. Also, in many areas of the world, like Africa, people are already eating mostly local food.

It is also the reason why that as energy becomes more scarce and EROEI continues to diminish that lower paid workers of society can no longer afford to even drive across town for their jobs and at the same time businesses cannot afford to increase real wages because their own "work and productivity multiplier" has drastically decline as well, hence the seemingly contradictory juxtaposition of massive so-called labor shortages yet abysmal real unemployment rates all at the same time.


That's very lazy reasoning. The cost of commuting to work doesn't appear to be a major reason for the employment situation. The main issue seems to be that the economy has had a major shake-up and, as it often happens in such cases, the skills that companies want to recruit for are different from the skills that unemployed workers have.

It’s not a stretch to imagine that concentration camps are right around the corner


Yes, it is a big stretch. If you want to put concentration camps in the picture, try not to do such a serious non-sequitur.

The problem with solar and wind is that it needs energy storage, and there are not enough lithium, copper, nor rare-earth in the world to be able to build enough batteries


Batteries are not the only form of energy storage. Hydro and molten salts can be used for energy storage.

Currently all of the renewables that are so-called 'break even' are actually dual-subsidized, the first subsidy is the financial one by the governments of the world


Solar and wind are no longer financially subsidized in many places, because they break even without subsidies.

the next stage is the clamping down on freedom of movement and the artificial suppression of consumption demand by way of covert destabilization of global supply chains


There is nothing covert about global supply chains being destabilized.

One way or another, in the name of endless booster shots and vaccine passports, or mandatory individual carbon caps, before long whatever money that you have left saved up that hasn't already been diluted and inflated and taxed away by then will still be worthless as it’s no longer able to buy the things or services that you want nor take you to the places that you wish to go...


The only reason you needed to mention booster shots, vaccine passports and carbon caps was for religious... I mean, political... I mean, is there a difference?... reasons. Because otherwise, there is no connection between those ideas and everything you said before.

As that one 'New World Order' person said, by the end of this decade you will own nothing, have no privacy


Of course, privacy has to be in there for religious reasons, but actually, there is nothing in the concept of peak oil that connects to privacy in any way that makes sense to me.

So I gather that belief in peak oil, at least in the form that you can express it, doesn't have true believers that I would find reasonable, and not many true believers overall anyway, in a world where anti-vaxers have lots of true believers.

If that isn't proof that we live in Hell, I don't know what is.
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Re: Energy Epiphany

Unread postby Polybius » Thu 06 Jan 2022, 16:54:25

AdamB wrote:
Outcast_Searcher wrote:SO much babbling. No citations. But lots of preaching.


I agree. You didn't even reference the most basic calculation of EROEI, or how it has decreased and folks who used to it to predict something (Charles Hall in 1981 perhaps?) failed. You certainly didn't mention how the value of BTUs matters in this calculation, as economic activity is based on $$, not BTUs, otherwise you would make the following trade, which I would make with you, and it would prove your entire point. Should you accept.

I will trade you, BTU for BTU, a BTU of sunlight from my backyard, for a BTU of gasoline. Or crude oil if you'd prefer. I will deposit a steel 100bbl oil field quality tank at the base of your driveway into which you can put these BTUs of gasoline or crude, and I will allow you to collect the BTUs raining down on my backyard any way you'd like. You will keep the photons, and I the crude or gasoline.

If you can't make that trade, thank you for proving why our economic isn't dictated by EROEI. And you don't have the cajones to even make the most basic bet on the concept because you know how and why you would lose. It is that obvious. Are you trapped in this false equivalency for some reason? Or are just generally ignorant? And why does this stuff continue? Because claiming peak oils didn't work for doomers, so they decided to make up crap and see if others unfamiliar with...physics, science, etc etc, could be hoodwinked by something far more opaque. Additionally, this verbal diarrhea wasn't meant to be serious, but fits right in with your previous posting topics and misunderstandings of...well.,,the real world, but I imagine it sounds like great pontificating gibberish to Qanon supporters, conspiracy fans, those already inclined to belief systems requiring the denial of science, logic and analytical thinking, etc etc.



Money is actually a measure of EROEI, its just that traditionally its been too difficult to calculate so since dawn of civilation the concept of money was invented and used instead.

If you are a carpenter and could no longer use powered tools and had to go manual, then its no brainer your producitivity will decrease, and my paying you the same nominal dollar rate per hour will yield less product simply because the work multiplier effect of energy was gone.

So as a result the purchasing power of my dollar has deminished simply because of the lack of available energy. Not because you worked less hours or got lazy.

Energy is what gives modern money its value and purchasing power.

From here on out globally the world will have less net energy available globally for productive use. Whats not shown is that globally we are using up more and more energy to get less and less.

Yet the currency supply is only increasing, as money printer goes brrrr

So being pulled from both ends, its damn if you do and/or dont, Energy Trap is here and you cant get out

1BTU of sweet crude does not equal 1BTU of tar sands. Sure the final energy is the same but in my above analogy, your 1BTU of tar had to be trucked around the world and so its worthless...

Ethanoel the scam is a net energy sink with negative EROEI, so yeah you can use 1BTU of ethanoel the same way you can try to open up your refrigerator door on hot summers day to attempt to get cool, it might cool your face but it has net result of making your entire house that much more hotter and then some
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Re: Energy Epiphany

Unread postby Polybius » Thu 06 Jan 2022, 17:22:27

Adam

The value and purchasing power of money is determined by the energy multiplier effect that underpins it. If you were a billionare with a suitcase of cash that somehow crash landed in a remote island, and broke your leg, how much money do you think you have to give the pilot for him to carry you a mile by foot vs back in civilization if you were to hail a taxi vs that mile per dollar rate?

Governments can, and do, print money to artificially prop up energy projects with negative EROEI, net energy sinks, but on paper it appears to produce economic value (adds to GDP) when in fact its counterproductive thermodynamically/entropyically, and at the end of the day energy/physics underpins it all. Not what some accounting spreadsheet says

The whole crux of the matter is that money no longer represents a true measure of value since governments are minting more of it (more like just moving the decimal places now) all the while the energy that underpins it keeps getting more scarce. And even the existing money supply is being entropically devalued by the scarity of energy both in nominal totality and the EROEI needed to achieve/obtain it.

You are going in circles yourself because you fail to realize that it is precisely the whole system of modern economics that has broken down and money itself doesn't make sense anymore
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Re: Energy Epiphany

Unread postby AdamB » Thu 06 Jan 2022, 17:27:55

Polybius wrote:
AdamB wrote:I will trade you, BTU for BTU, a BTU of sunlight from my backyard, for a BTU of gasoline. Or crude oil if you'd prefer. I will deposit a steel 100bbl oil field quality tank at the base of your driveway into which you can put these BTUs of gasoline or crude, and I will allow you to collect the BTUs raining down on my backyard any way you'd like. You will keep the photons, and I the crude or gasoline.

Money is actually a measure of EROEI, its just that traditionally its been too difficult to calculate so since dawn of civilation the concept of money was invented and used instead.


So you are willing to trade me BTU for BTU, seeing as how money is a measure of energy value? Or are you going to try and weasel your way out of being forced to admit that you can't trade BTU for BTU, but certainly would give me 2 $10/bills in exchange for a $20?

Polybius wrote:1BTU of sweet crude does not equal 1BTU of tar sands.


Learn some science. A BTU is a BTU is a BTU. So yes, by every definition used as to what a BTU is, a BTU is a BTU.

When those 10 BTUs of medium grade sweet crude and 10 BTUs of bitumen show up at the front gate of a refinery, they are both identical in terms of BTUs. And the refinery will give you $0.80 on the dollar for the tar sands over the medium grade crude. Words don't beat math.

Think harder next time. Or go slop some hogs who don't care what comes out of the bucket. While there aren't near as many people here as there used to be, most of them can think for themselves and understand what a BTU is. You want to argue EROEI, there is this fisheries ecologist who used it to predict the cessation of US oil and gas drilling by the year 2005. You two can have a great time pretending that net energy matters, and can be used to predict stuff without anyone pointing out that bobble heads on this topic are just that, and nothing more.
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Re: Energy Epiphany

Unread postby Polybius » Thu 06 Jan 2022, 17:35:59

Doly wrote:OK, I see that you are attempting to express the belief system of the Church of Peak Oil, or something along those lines. I don't have issues with the general gist of it, but there are several points that I do take issue with:

Money, in all its forms,(be it Dollars, Yuan, gold, bitcoin, NFTs, stocks, real estate, bs artwork, commodities, etc) are merely nothing more than human social construct of abstract proxy tokens meant to symbolize and account for and help make sense of these energy flows and resource deposits/allocations.


This leaves out one of the main uses of money, which is to pay wages. Traditional economists said that the value of money comes from two places: labor and land (including agriculture and mining). You are claiming that money is merely used to distribute resources and energy, and ignoring the money transactions around paying for somebody's work. And the value put on a particular piece of work isn't very well correlated with the amount of energy needed to produce it.

Increasing the money supply while actual resources are all being depleted and whilst EROEI keeps diminishing means modern money is now almost entirely decoupled from what it was meant to represent.


I think you are correct in thinking that increasing money supply in an environment of diminishing availability of energy and other resources can be problematic, though I'd rather leave the finer financial points to people who are more knowledgeable about financial issues than myself. The reason, however, is not the vague reason you have stated. The reason is that energy, being essential, cannot be allowed to be below a certain fraction of the economy, or somebody could corner the market for energy, and nobody wants an essential item to be in the hands of a very small number of people. If the total amount of energy available is flat or declining, and under the assumption that central banks do their job of keeping prices roughly stable, that means that the overall economy must stop growing soon after reaching the energy peak.

it was only after the invention of agriculture that there was an net energy surplus (there was more than enough food so some members of society could spend their days working on other things) so that the surplus energy could be used for things like building Great Wall of China or the Pyramids in Egypt etc...


Nitpick: Gobekli Tepe was a pretty impressive temple built before agriculture. But in general terms, correct.

In these modern times, on average for every calorie of food that we consume, roughly nine other additional calories of net energy went into the production and transportation of that food. In a very real sense, we are basically converting fossil fuels (fertilizers and pesticides are all byproducts of petroleum) into food in order to feed the vast majority of the global human population.


I did check that claim a long time ago, and most of those nine additional calories went into transportation. So, if people started eating a lot more local food, a huge part of the problem disappears. Also, in many areas of the world, like Africa, people are already eating mostly local food.

It is also the reason why that as energy becomes more scarce and EROEI continues to diminish that lower paid workers of society can no longer afford to even drive across town for their jobs and at the same time businesses cannot afford to increase real wages because their own "work and productivity multiplier" has drastically decline as well, hence the seemingly contradictory juxtaposition of massive so-called labor shortages yet abysmal real unemployment rates all at the same time.


That's very lazy reasoning. The cost of commuting to work doesn't appear to be a major reason for the employment situation. The main issue seems to be that the economy has had a major shake-up and, as it often happens in such cases, the skills that companies want to recruit for are different from the skills that unemployed workers have.

It’s not a stretch to imagine that concentration camps are right around the corner


Yes, it is a big stretch. If you want to put concentration camps in the picture, try not to do such a serious non-sequitur.

The problem with solar and wind is that it needs energy storage, and there are not enough lithium, copper, nor rare-earth in the world to be able to build enough batteries


Batteries are not the only form of energy storage. Hydro and molten salts can be used for energy storage.

Currently all of the renewables that are so-called 'break even' are actually dual-subsidized, the first subsidy is the financial one by the governments of the world


Solar and wind are no longer financially subsidized in many places, because they break even without subsidies.

the next stage is the clamping down on freedom of movement and the artificial suppression of consumption demand by way of covert destabilization of global supply chains


There is nothing covert about global supply chains being destabilized.

One way or another, in the name of endless booster shots and vaccine passports, or mandatory individual carbon caps, before long whatever money that you have left saved up that hasn't already been diluted and inflated and taxed away by then will still be worthless as it’s no longer able to buy the things or services that you want nor take you to the places that you wish to go...


The only reason you needed to mention booster shots, vaccine passports and carbon caps was for religious... I mean, political... I mean, is there a difference?... reasons. Because otherwise, there is no connection between those ideas and everything you said before.

As that one 'New World Order' person said, by the end of this decade you will own nothing, have no privacy


Of course, privacy has to be in there for religious reasons, but actually, there is nothing in the concept of peak oil that connects to privacy in any way that makes sense to me.

So I gather that belief in peak oil, at least in the form that you can express it, doesn't have true believers that I would find reasonable, and not many true believers overall anyway, in a world where anti-vaxers have lots of true believers.

If that isn't proof that we live in Hell, I don't know what is.



Not sure how religion got into this, I am not a religious person.

The privacy issue is about social credit score. It, along with a plethora of other things like vax cards, carbon caps, are meant to create artificial demand destruction so the iSheeple of the world don't all woke up and realize the jig is up, so to speak... so they park their money and "invest" in NFT and Crypto this and stock options that.... all to mask, the real symptom that everyone is going to be a paper millionaire with nothing to buy and nowhere to go (only slightly exaggerated )

The USD, like most other currencies will become digitalized, money 2.0 with API and full information awareness, something like what China has already done, its to effectuate behavior shaping of consumers both individually and on broader aggregate levels but in order to have such a system there will be no privacy of anonymous cash anymore

https://www.zerohedge.com/crypto/chinas ... ation-date

Its not like they can come out and tell people the real truth, so all the parlor tricks are being pulled out the bag now
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Re: Energy Epiphany

Unread postby Newfie » Thu 06 Jan 2022, 22:02:03

Polybus,

Not a bad essay. Obviously not everyone is going to agree with everything, and you covered a lot of territory there.

Thanks.
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Re: Energy Epiphany

Unread postby Doly » Sun 09 Jan 2022, 17:40:46

Not sure how religion got into this, I am not a religious person.


My definition of "religion" is clearly wider than yours. I have a very broad definition, any ideology that's held in spite that its main claims are not credible to a person not familiar with the ideology but familiar with basic scientific facts, after the person has spent sufficient time to learn any relevant new concepts, I call "religion". So, I consider Marxism a religion, for example, even though a Marxist would be offended by that classification. (Though, Marxism is a very broad church, so it's possible that I'd agree with some of the most moderate members of that religion.)

The privacy issue is about social credit score. It, along with a plethora of other things like vax cards, carbon caps, are meant to create artificial demand destruction so the iSheeple of the world don't all woke up and realize the jig is up, so to speak... so they park their money and "invest" in NFT and Crypto this and stock options that.... all to mask, the real symptom that everyone is going to be a paper millionaire with nothing to buy and nowhere to go (only slightly exaggerated )


So, according to you, all those things are being planned by the same bunch of people? Who is supposed to be orchestrating all this?

Its not like they can come out and tell people the real truth, so all the parlor tricks are being pulled out the bag now


As far as I'm concerned, the real truth is that vampires are literally real, though they don't literally drink blood. They just suck the life-force out of other people. There have probably always been some around, but these days they are everywhere.

I don't have a very clear idea of how it came to happen, but I get the impression it's caught a lot of people by surprise. My current best theory is that whatever bunch of elastics holds consensus reality together is having a lot of those elastics snapping, as a consequence of many people changing their minds about lots of things at the same time. Unfortunately, many of those changes haven't been towards a closer approximation to reality.
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Re: Energy Epiphany

Unread postby Polybius » Tue 11 Jan 2022, 08:45:44

Modern money derives almost entirely it real purchasing power (and thus value) from the underlining "work/force/producitivty multiplier effect" in the context of the society in which it exists in.

As that societies/civilizations primary energy sources dwindle and/or its EROEI (total net usable energy) threshold declines, then so does that societies money likewise deflate and devalue.

The same unit of money will be able to fetch less energy, produce less work, contribute to less producitivity, and thus enable less real economic activity etc

In such a situation, using money to measure economic activity is like using an ever shrinking ruler/yardstick to measure the deminsions of your physical property and volume of your tangible assets.... even as you get poorer and had to sell off more of your things, if your ruler or measurement device is shrinking at a faster pace then it would still appear by all measurements you were well off (for example using money to measure GDP as a signifier of the health or status of a nation or global economy)

The US stock market is no longer any indication of the well being of the nation as a whole nor does it represent the standing of most average Americans, the Feds basically printing directly to prop it up. But energy is what underpins everything, and in the final analysis at the end of the day there is no cheating the 2nd law of thermodynamics.

Bottom line is that money's value is derived from the underlining net energy (EROEI) that civilization has access to use.

As access to energy peaks and declines (as globally it did back in 2019) and EROEI threshold deminishes, the same amount of nominal dollars is now actually worth less and less. This becomes a double problem when we still try to price energy in terms of dollars and use classic economic models to try and forecast the future. Imagine pumping fuel into your car gas tank but as you are pumping it the price per gallon keep going up in real-time. But what would your total price come out to be? It now also depends on the rate of your pump and how fast price of energy goes up.

Energy is still priced way too low (not to mention not all resources are the same, its uniquely energy that gives or props up all other economic activities including human labor the vast portion of their value etc) and in this regard money as a unit of measure and in fact modern economics itself has completely failed in being a true signifier or being able to accurately measure and price the remaining energy we have left.

Energy is the prerequiste to all economic activity and indeed all life itself, in a decreasing EROEI world, money loses ability to accurately price/value the remaining energy thus causing a viscous cycle of energy being monetarily cheaper than it should otherwise be, which again in turn CONtributes to propping up the value of money itself -- (recall that modern money derives almost entirely it real purchasing power (and thus value) from the undelining "work/force/producitivty multiplier effect" in the context of the society in which it exists in. ) -- which it itself in turn means it only serves to accelerates and compounds the errors in pricing or accounting for subsequent consumption of energy and the remaining energy and so on and so forth...

It means we could collectively be right on the edge of total collapse but no one would even know it, all most people know is their 401k went up 20% last year. Once we globally fall off the EROEI cliff, (modern civilization is structured to require a minimum EROEI threshold, whatever that number turns out to be) it could be a runaway collapse supernova implosion of ended up in the dieoff of at least 90% of current human population. or worse

If energy was accurately priced for once, then the true value of almost all other economic activities would deflate and the real state of the eCONomy would be unmasked.... that cannot be allowed to happen until the elites get out from under their positions first... hence the likes of CIA ShitCoin for the masses of iSheeple to HODL

Instead of pricing energy correctly, which for political reasons the powers that be dont want to do as it would be admitting modern economic theory and economic models have a huge flaw, we get everything blamed on things like covid (CIA biovirus) to vaccine hesistancy to "supply chain issues" and from "lack of workers" to "labor force in quarantine due to omniCON" etc etc etc all to mask the real underlining root cause of it all, : acceleated irreversible terminal decline in global net EROEI.

So instead they have chosen to attack the demand side with a series of false flags and other more overt impositions...engineered to be artificial global demand destruction hence we now have the controlled demolition of society by the locking down of the masses and the shutdown of businesses, the endless boosters and vax passports (restriction of movement) and the implementation of an individual carbon cap quota system (control of consumption) all again to try to kick the can down the road and prolong a little while longer (to allow time to implement the control mechanisms in place) the masking of the real underlining root cause of it all, : accelerated irreversible terminal decline in global net EROEI.
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Re: Energy Epiphany

Unread postby AdamB » Tue 11 Jan 2022, 13:39:33

Polybius wrote:The same unit of money will be able to fetch less energy, produce less work, contribute to less producitivity, and thus enable less real economic activity etc


Gee. Sounds like inflation. Good thing it doesn't have anything to do with EROEI either.

Got any other monkey grinder routines you want to try out?

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Re: Energy Epiphany

Unread postby AdamB » Sat 15 Jan 2022, 23:53:56

Polybius wrote:https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0921800915303815


I only needed to look at your first reference ( I was really hoping you had something, somewhere) and this is the quote:

We use a price-based methodology to assess the global energy-return-on-investment (EROI) of coal, oil, and gas, from the beginning of their reported production (respectively 1800, 1860, and 1890) to 2012.


You want to reference science on EROEI calculations let me offer a clue....don't quote articles that need to pretend energy is equivalent to money in the first paragraph. Charles Hall tried that one as well, if memory serves using AFE's from some gas company on wells. Turns out, not only don't you ask a fisheries ecologist questions about energy and drilling in the US, you don't expect them to understand that energy isn't money either.
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Re: Energy Epiphany

Unread postby evilgenius » Sun 16 Jan 2022, 12:16:32

Sorry, I don't think energy and money are equivalents. I like how you explore the definitions of these things, to try and discover what connections they might have. It helps to allow the use of metaphor, in certain situations. They can be stand ins for each other, in that way.

It's a hard one because there is a Nobel prize waiting for the person who can say what energy really is. We have some boxes that we define it with. We find we are able to put it inside of them, and it won't get out, but that doesn't mean we know what it is.
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Re: Energy Epiphany

Unread postby Polybius » Sun 16 Jan 2022, 15:24:47

evilgenius wrote:Sorry, I don't think energy and money are equivalents. I like how you explore the definitions of these things, to try and discover what connections they might have. It helps to allow the use of metaphor, in certain situations. They can be stand ins for each other, in that way.

It's a hard one because there is a Nobel prize waiting for the person who can say what energy really is. We have some boxes that we define it with. We find we are able to put it inside of them, and it won't get out, but that doesn't mean we know what it is.


Modern "money" is a claim on existing energy deposit's future ability to do "work".

Put another way, money is a claim on energy. Specifically, it is the ability to apply that energy to do productive work in the future. (when the money is spent/exchanged/actualized in the context of a society that still has access to available net energy for use)

There are virtually no economic activity that doesn't require an energy input from the external environment in the form of a primary energy resource (coal, oil, natural gas, etc etc).

You can think of EROEI almost like an energy tax, imposed not by government decree but by the laws of physics, specially that of the 2nd law of thermodynamics / entropy etc... When EROEI was 100 the energy taxation was merely at 1% of all economic activity, but now that EROEI has dropped below 10, the energy taxation is above 10% and is rising exponentially until soon we fall off the EROEI energy cliff entirely.

At the end of the day Net Energy is what counts because it alone powers all the other non-energy sectors of the economy. And all of the goods and services in the modern economy, without exception, require such an energy input.

When EROEI went from 100 to 10, there were still plenty of Net Energy available, but once EROEI is at 7 or less, there suddenly is very little net energy available, please reference the EROEI to Net Energy graph to see why we have already past the point of inflection in terms of the Energy Cliff.

Per capita net energy (accounting for EROEI) has already dropped off a cliff and that is the underlining reason why productivity and real wages have gone down even as technology was suppose to increase the productivity of workers. (an increase in economic growth rate by one percentage point is associated with an increase in primary energy consumption by 0.96 percent). The math doesn't lie.

We are essentially, for all intents and purposes, living in a so-called fractional reserve energy economy. In that there is not a commensurate amount of energy set aside or locked away for each unit of money invested, printed or saved.

Energy is priced on the basis of output vs consumption demand, even as the total global reserves themselves are starting to run empty/dry but as long as it can be pumped out at roughly the same rate then the price stays relatively stable...

But this false stability is misleading because the total remaining extractable/usable net energy reserves in the world are already far less than the amount of total money out there in circulation and in terms of monies saved up or in the form of investments, retirement funds, profits earned and accumulated etc etc

Energy is being priced by an economic system that relies upon the assumption that the very instruments of what it is relying on to price will always exists into perpetuity.

The dollar was decoupled from the gold standard when it was exposed that Fort Knox vault was empty and there was in fact no gold left, the parallel is that global energy reserves underground are all but empty and depleted especially when accounting for the remaining paltry net usable energy that can still be realistically extracted. But unlike back in the 70s when the US government cheated the peoples of the world with the financial con, this time around there is no tricking the second law of thermodynamics, and robbing Peter to pay Paul by printing to no tomorrow does not more energy make.

Down the cliff we go.
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Re: Energy Epiphany

Unread postby AdamB » Sun 16 Jan 2022, 16:24:34

evilgenius wrote:Sorry, I don't think energy and money are equivalents.


No need to apologize, they aren't, and anyone who understands the difference between a BTU (regardless of form) and a bill of some countries currency already knows it instinctively.

evilgenius wrote: I like how you explore the definitions of these things, to try and discover what connections they might have. It helps to allow the use of metaphor, in certain situations. They can be stand ins for each other, in that way.


An important part of any economy is the energy it uses. The cost, the utility and value difference between two forms of the same amount of energy, which one is more available and therefore more readily available for development perhaps.

evilgenius wrote:It's a hard one because there is a Nobel prize waiting for the person who can say what energy really is. We have some boxes that we define it with. We find we are able to put it inside of them, and it won't get out, but that doesn't mean we know what it is.


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Re: Energy Epiphany

Unread postby AdamB » Sun 16 Jan 2022, 16:39:09

Polybius wrote:
evilgenius wrote:Sorry, I don't think energy and money are equivalents. I like how you explore the definitions of these things, to try and discover what connections they might have. It helps to allow the use of metaphor, in certain situations. They can be stand ins for each other, in that way.

It's a hard one because there is a Nobel prize waiting for the person who can say what energy really is. We have some boxes that we define it with. We find we are able to put it inside of them, and it won't get out, but that doesn't mean we know what it is.


Modern "money" is a claim on existing energy deposit's future ability to do "work".


You darn right you better put those two in quotes if you are going to define them in a different way than accepted. Money is a medium of common exchange allowing trade and whatnot. Money for buying someone else's spare cow. Work =(force X distance). Power is the amount of work done in a given amount of time.

Don't know what your make believe, needs to be in quotes "work" is because you don't use the common definition when dealing with energy, you want to play in make believe land.

Polybius wrote:Put another way, money is a claim on energy.


Put another way that's nothing but your claim. Because you can't do the math on this idea of yours, others have already discredited the entire EROEI = SOMETHING OF IMPORTANCE concept, and all you're left with is semantics.

Polybius wrote:There are virtually no economic activity that doesn't require an energy input from the external environment in the form of a primary energy resource (coal, oil, natural gas, etc etc).


Everything, including you breathing at this very moment, requires energy of some sort, and certainly there is no restriction to that statement on just peak oil/gas/coal doomer ideas. The primary energy sources of this planet consist of the local nuclear furnace in the sky (as fossil fuels are derived from it, and geologic processes related to plate tectonics) and radioactive decay.

You don't even know what primary IS when it comes to energy, and you want to pretend anything else you say is of value?

Polybius wrote: The math doesn't lie.


You don't do math. You yammer. You provide a published reference and the FIRST thing they want to do is convert their calculations and research into MONEY. Which energy ISN'T. Do you even know this most basic of a fact?

I understand that you are really interested in making a doom argument around energy and the economy, but try learning something about both before assembling your argument, and maybe next time at THE VERY LEAST you won't use references that instantly confuse the two....not that you weren't already confused. Learn stuff, aspire to be more, don't just be another doomer living in a fantasyland of their own construction. That is just so...normal.
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Re: Energy Epiphany

Unread postby Polybius » Sun 16 Jan 2022, 16:41:15

Modern "money" is a claim on existing energy supply/deposit's future ability to do "work", when that money is spent/exchanged/actualized in the context of a society that still has readily access to available net energy for use. Thus money derives almost entirely it real purchasing power (and thus value) from the underlining "work/force/producitivty multiplier effect" of energy.

At the end of the day Net Energy is what counts because it alone powers all the other non-energy sectors of the economy. And all of the goods and services in the modern economy, without exception, require such an energy input. As that societies/civilizations primary energy sources dwindle and/or its EROEI (total net usable energy) threshold declines, then so does that societies money likewise deflate and devalue. The same unit of money will be able to fetch less energy, produce less work, contribute to less productivity, and thus enable less real economic activity etc

In such a situation, using money to measure economic activity is like using an ever shrinking ruler/yardstick to measure the dimensions of your physical property and volume of your tangible assets.... even as you get poorer and had to sell off more of your things, if your ruler or measurement device is shrinking at a faster pace then it would still appear by all measurements you were well off (for example using money to measure GDP as a signifier of the health or status of a nation or global economy)

Per capita net energy (accounting for EROEI) has already dropped off a cliff and that is the underlining reason why productivity and real wages have gone down even as technology was suppose to increase the productivity of workers. (an increase in economic growth rate by one percentage point is associated with an increase in primary energy consumption by 0.96 percent).

We are essentially, for all intents and purposes, living in a so-called "fractional-reserve Energy economy", in that there is not a commensurate amount of energy set aside or locked away for each unit of money invested, printed, earned or saved.

Energy is priced on the basis of output vs consumption demand, even as the total global reserves themselves are starting to run empty/dry but as long as it can be pumped out at roughly the same rate then the price stays relatively stable...

But this false stability is misleading because the total remaining extractable/usable net energy reserves in the world are already far less than the amount of total money out there in circulation and in terms of monies saved up or in the form of investments, retirement funds, profits earned and accumulated etc etc

Energy is in essence being priced by an economic system that itself relies upon the assumption that the very instruments of what it is relying on to price will always exists into perpetuity.

In a decreasing EROEI world, money loses ability to accurately price/value the remaining energy thus causing a viscous cycle of energy being monetarily cheaper than it should otherwise be, which again in turn CONtributes to propping up the value of money itself -- (recall that modern money derives almost entirely it real purchasing power (and thus value) from the underlining "work/force/productivity multiplier effect" in the context of the society in which it exists in. ) -- which it itself in turn means it only serves to accelerates and compounds the errors in pricing or accounting for subsequent consumption of energy and the remaining energy and so on and so forth...

So instead they have chosen to attack the "demand side" with a series of "false-flags" and other more overt impositions...engineered to be artificial global-demand-destruction and hence we now have the controlled demolition of society by the locking down of the masses and the shutdown of businesses, the endless boosters and vax passports (restriction of movement) and the implementation of an individual carbon cap quota system (control of consumption) all again to try to kick the can down the road and prolong a little while longer (to allow time to implement the final control mechanisms and solutions in place) the masking of the real underlining root cause of it all, : accelerated irreversible terminal decline in global net EROEI.
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