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PeakOil is You

Saving energy is pointless

How to save energy through both societal and individual actions.

Is "Saving energy" pointless?

Yes
12
22%
No
43
78%
 
Total votes : 55

Re: Saving energy is pointless

Unread postby spot5050 » Wed 25 Apr 2012, 19:56:37

I am totally flabergasted to find that the current vote is;

22% yes, 78% no.
8 yes, 28 no.

Wow. That means that most peak-oilers do not believe that oil is a finite resource.

In 10,000 years time nobody will care that you bought an "energy saving" light bulb.
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Re: Saving energy is pointless

Unread postby spot5050 » Wed 25 Apr 2012, 20:04:10

We will use it all eventually.
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Re: Saving energy is pointless

Unread postby SeaGypsy » Wed 25 Apr 2012, 20:40:49

The word is "POINTLESS"

pointless

Pronunciation: /ˈpointlis/
adjective
1having little or no sense, use, or purpose:
speculating like this is a pointless exercise
[with infinitive]:
it’s pointless to plan too far ahead
2(of a contest or competitor) without a point scored.


(Online Oxford)

There are plenty of 'POINTS' in saving energy. The OP is not "Saving energy will not save the world". It clearly will not. But the can kicking can go on for a very long time. With a more realistic view of this finite resource early on, we might have only burned a small fraction of what we have already.
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Re: Saving energy is pointless

Unread postby spot5050 » Wed 25 Apr 2012, 20:48:25

SeaGypsy wrote:The word is "POINTLESS"

pointless

Pronunciation: /ˈpointlis/
adjective
1having little or no sense, use, or purpose:
speculating like this is a pointless exercise
[with infinitive]:
it’s pointless to plan too far ahead
2(of a contest or competitor) without a point scored.


(Online Oxford)

There are plenty of 'POINTS' in saving energy. The OP is not "Saving energy will not save the world". It clearly will not. But the can kicking can go on for a very long time. With a more realistic view of this finite resource early on, we might have only burned a small fraction of what we have already.


Don't quote the dictionary at me. What's your point?
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Re: Saving energy is pointless

Unread postby spot5050 » Wed 25 Apr 2012, 21:12:42

pstarr wrote:that you don't make sense, don't respond to others comments;

I object to the first part, but I accept the second part. I don't read every post. If posts are too long I don't bother reading them.
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Re: Saving energy is pointless

Unread postby SeaGypsy » Wed 25 Apr 2012, 21:46:24

Another word for 'pointless' is 'futile'. This requires qualification, to be other than an absolute. Calling saving energy 'absolutely futile' would be an accurate simile to calling it 'pointless'. Clearly a stupid and ignorant comment. If you want to talk about 'Will saving energy save the world or BAU or whatever?' Start a thread called that.
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Re: Saving energy is pointless

Unread postby spot5050 » Wed 25 Apr 2012, 22:18:20

JohnRM wrote:Then saving energy is important, but only for adapting to a lower-energy, lower-consumption kind of society and lifestyle.

A "lower energy lifestyle" means using fuel more slowly. It merely delays the inevitable.

JohnRM wrote:We need to learn how to do that now, while we still have alternatives to fall back on. Otherwise, when the time comes, we will scramble about in futility trying to figure it out on the fly and become dependent upon the new land lords in post-industrial serfdom.

OK I geddit. You are optimistic - I'm pessimistic. I don't think we will do it.
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Re: Saving energy is pointless

Unread postby spot5050 » Wed 25 Apr 2012, 22:35:40

SeaGypsy wrote:Another word for 'pointless' is 'futile'.... Clearly a stupid and ignorant comment.

The most active posters here are the most patronising.
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Re: Saving energy is pointless

Unread postby SeaGypsy » Wed 25 Apr 2012, 23:49:12

Wheras you are just wasting bandwidth.
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Re: Saving energy is pointless

Unread postby Tanada » Thu 26 Apr 2012, 06:24:08

New rules remember people disagreement does not deserve disrespect. Argue your point, don't dismissively name call those who argue back.
I should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, design a building, write, balance accounts, build a wall, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, pitch manure, program a computer, cook, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.
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Re: Saving energy is pointless

Unread postby SeaGypsy » Fri 27 Apr 2012, 23:18:53

I think this is a global village metaphor, where the fat guy on the hill runs an aircon in the window of every room in his house while the top 20 percentile can barely run a refrigerator and small TV a few hours a day, and the fat guy dismissing any suggestion he might influence the village's supply and affordability were he to economize a little. "It doesn't matter what I use, there will always be brownouts and the price is high because the suppliers are greedy." Scaled up.

I am aware of Jevons paradox, as would be all regular and familiar readers here. We already have:



Aaron wrote:Wonderful... great... logical... with precedent. Crap

Jevons Paradox

William Stanley Jevons (1835-1882) is best known as a British economist who was one of the pioneers of contemporary neoclassical economic analysis, with its subjective value theory rooted in marginal utility.

Chapter Seven of The Coal Question was entitled "Of the Economy of Fuel." Here he argued that increased efficiency in using a natural resource, such as coal, only resulted in increased demand for that resource, not a reduction in demand. This was because such improvement in efficiency led to a rising scale of production. "It is wholly a confusion of ideas," Jevons wrote,

...to suppose that the economic use of fuel is equivalent to a diminished consumption. The very contrary is the truth. As a rule, the new modes of economy will lead to an increase of consumption according to a principle recognized in many parallel instances…. The same principles apply, with even greater force and distinctiveness to the use of such a general agent as coal. It is the very economy of its use which leads to its extensive consumption…. Nor is it difficult to see how this paradox arises…. If the quantity of coal used in a blast-furnace, for instance, be diminished in comparison with the yield, the profits of the trade will increase, new capital will be attracted, the price of pig-iron will fall, but the demand for it increase; and eventually the greater number of furnaces will more than make up for the diminished consumption of each. And if such is not always the result within a single branch, it must be remembered that the progress of any branch of manufacture excites a new activity in most other branches and leads indirectly, if not directly, to increased inroads upon our seams of coal…. Civilization, says Baron Liebig, is the economy of power, and our power is coal. It is the very economy of the use of coal that makes our industry what it is; and the more we render it efficient and economical, the more will our industry thrive, and our works of civilization grow (140-142).

The contemporary significance of the Jevons paradox is seen with respect to the automobile in the United States. The introduction of more energy-efficient automobiles in this country in the 1970s did not curtail the demand for fuel because driving increased and the number of cars on the road soon doubled. Similarly, technological improvements in refrigeration simply led to more and larger refrigerators. The same tendencies are in effect within industry, independent of individual consumption.

What he is saying is, I think, that people will consume what is available, over time, to the limits of it's availability. So that by increasing the energy efficiency of oil use, we will actually stimulate the growth in oil consumption and accelerate depletion rates.

Alrighty then...


the-jevons-paradox-thread-merged-t50-945.html

With our site's founder's view of Jevons as the basis of anything...
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Re: Saving energy is pointless

Unread postby AdTheNad » Sat 28 Apr 2012, 09:43:36

spot5050 wrote:A "lower energy lifestyle" means using fuel more slowly. It merely delays the inevitable.

So you agree it's not pointless then, on a human timescale? Which is kind of a big deal to me, being human and all.

On a geologic timescale maybe it is pointless, but so is life, and I'm not about to end that.

The question didn't mention timescale, so the answer is demonstratably yes. 30 people are correct, 9 are wrong.
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Re: Saving energy is pointless

Unread postby dolanbaker » Sat 28 Apr 2012, 10:11:48

AdTheNad wrote:
spot5050 wrote:A "lower energy lifestyle" means using fuel more slowly. It merely delays the inevitable.

So you agree it's not pointless then, on a human timescale? Which is kind of a big deal to me, being human and all.

On a geologic timescale maybe it is pointless, but so is life, and I'm not about to end that.

The question didn't mention timescale, so the answer is demonstratably yes. 30 people are correct, 9 are wrong.

Ultimately, saving energy is pointless as what you save will be consumed elsewhere, but wasting energy is even more pointless!

The world is full of examples of where energy is treated as precious and used sparingly to gain as much use out if it as possible.

Image

Or the US version.

Image
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Re: Saving energy is pointless

Unread postby Shaved Monkey » Sun 29 Apr 2012, 18:35:33

dolanbaker wrote:Image

When you put this into perspective of what he makes a week compared to what he pays for a litre of fuel.
Its probably on par with about $20 or $30 a litre(about $80 odd a Gallon) at a guess
Someone might know the average Indians wage compared to the average Australian /American/ European
and do the maths re a litre/gallon of fuel.
Shows you at what price we may still be using fuel (if its available)
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Re: Saving energy is pointless

Unread postby Revi » Sun 29 Apr 2012, 19:35:08

Saving energy has a point in my household.

We save about a thousand a year by heating with wood.

We save about $300 a year with solar hot water.

We save about $2000 a year with more efficient cars.

Insulating the house got us another thousand.

And we save about $200 a year by driving an NEV for stuff around town.

The point is $4500, some of which turns into movies and ice cream.

I'd say that saving energy is not pointless to us.
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Re: Saving energy is pointless

Unread postby SeaGypsy » Sun 29 Apr 2012, 20:17:26

Shaved Monkey wrote:
dolanbaker wrote:Image

When you put this into perspective of what he makes a week compared to what he pays for a litre of fuel.
Its probably on par with about $20 or $30 a litre(about $80 odd a Gallon) at a guess
Someone might know the average Indians wage compared to the average Australian /American/ European
and do the maths re a litre/gallon of fuel.
Shows you at what price we may still be using fuel (if its available)


A salient point too often overlooked. $5 to $10 a day is a rough average wage for the developing world. Call it 1 to 2 gallons a day. This is one of the main reasons I think the first world will continue to slide while the developing world continues growth.
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Re: Saving energy is pointless

Unread postby KrellEnergySource » Sun 29 Apr 2012, 23:25:57

If by my reducing my own energy use I make more available to others that may need it more than me, then saving energy is no more pointless than any other charity.

Or is charity considered pointless?


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