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Why The US Will Be Least Affected By Peak Oil

Discussions about the economic and financial ramifications of PEAK OIL

Re: Why The US Will Be Least Affected By Peak Oil

Unread postby ralfy » Mon 08 Oct 2018, 20:35:34

Tanada wrote:
Your complaint is based on the idea that change can not take place.


It's not a complaint but a fact, and I mentioned that to question the topic thread.
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Re: Why The US Will Be Least Affected By Peak Oil

Unread postby Tanada » Mon 08 Oct 2018, 20:40:20

ralfy wrote:
Tanada wrote:
Your complaint is based on the idea that change can not take place.


It's not a complaint but a fact, and I mentioned that to question the topic thread.


Just because your mind was made up decades ago about how the world works does not mean the rest of us must accept your refusal to change as a requirement for ourselves.

When Diesel was running at close to $5/gallon here in the midwest a lot of short haul trucking was still done but even more of the long haul variety was shifted to rail transport which is greatly more fuel efficient. IOW real human beings out here in the real world adapt to altered circumstances, they don't just throw up their hands in surrender and die without trying to adapt.
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Re: Why The US Will Be Least Affected By Peak Oil

Unread postby ralfy » Mon 08 Oct 2018, 20:56:41

Tanada wrote:
Just because your mind was made up decades ago about how the world works does not mean the rest of us must accept your refusal to change as a requirement for ourselves.

When Diesel was running at close to $5/gallon here in the midwest a lot of short haul trucking was still done but even more of the long haul variety was shifted to rail transport which is greatly more fuel efficient. IOW real human beings out here in the real world adapt to altered circumstances, they don't just throw up their hands in surrender and die without trying to adapt.


That's not based on my mind but on fact. Businesses employ economic order quantity to maximize profits, which is why there are only a few days' worth of food, fuel, medicine, and even ammo in various towns and cities. Many of them are not connected to rail transport.

On top of that, short-haul trucks are still needed, plus fuel for container ships that travel thousands of km, around 70 pct of mining, various components of mechanized agriculture, and more. In short, oil is also needed to manufacture components for rail and develop the infrastructure that it uses.

In addition, investments in efficiency in capitalist systems are done based on the premise of greater ROIs. That means it is assumed that greater efficiency leads to greater production, for which more profits are made through greater consumption. With that, efficiency doesn't lead to conservation but the opposite.

Finally, of course, human beings will not simply surrender and die. Instead, they will fight over remaining supplies, make do with what is available locally, and hope that more will arrive. The latter is based on the assumption that authorities will take control of industries and produce without a profit motive, conflict can be minimized easily, and that worldwide coordination can take place to husband remaining resources and minimize per capita consumption to necessities in the long run.

I think that assumption is questionable, which is why I provided these facts to question the title thread.
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Re: Why The US Will Be Least Affected By Peak Oil

Unread postby GHung » Mon 08 Oct 2018, 21:45:37

Tanada; " IOW real human beings out here in the real world adapt to altered circumstances, they don't just throw up their hands in surrender and die without trying to adapt."


Seems Tanada hasn't been on the ground in parts of the world where there isn't enough resilience to go around. Hasn't seen what forms 'adaptations' take there. Look to history if you haven't been there - done that.

Or maybe Tanada doesn't think it can happen where Tanada lives. US population has about tripled since the Great Depression, and per capita consumption has probably tripled as well, all things considered. Methinks Americans are going to be doing a lot of 'adapting' in the next 50 years.
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Re: Why The US Will Be Least Affected By Peak Oil

Unread postby onlooker » Mon 08 Oct 2018, 22:13:27

I think several problems arise in this "real world" adaptation. First off, the huge numbers of people complicate adaptation in terms of providing for all the needs of everyone. Second, the gradual evolutionary progress made in attaining higher standards of living and a more diverse and complex civilization, was organized and planned in stages . Collapse by definition will not be very organized or planned, almost certainly not gradual and thus presents acute challeges. Third, the governing elite and wealthy class who are closely linked to them, are and will be the last to forgo the current system ie. Capitalism, as it is most advantegous to them. And since they are the ones making the decisions, a deliberate powerdown policy seems unlikely at least not until utterly necessary. So, as the contraction and chaos becomes more extreme, it is implausible to not expect barbaric and violent behavior in the fight for survival. As well as selfish behavior. So, if the world could not unite in these relatively stable times. it does seem far fetched to expect it too in the coming more turbulent times. At best, pockets of resilient communties may exist which have prepared and united to confront the challenges. And in the wider society perhaps an authoritarian type of command and control power structure will be devised in some countries to allow a still somewhat large number of people to survive yet also allow the ruling wealthy elite class to retain their relative priviledged positions.

But make no mistake about it, though at first the rich countries will adapt to some degree to PO, ultimately these same countries are the most vulnerable to it because of their reliance on prodigious amouts of energy to provide the necessities and keep their Economies viable.
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Re: Why The US Will Be Least Affected By Peak Oil

Unread postby KaiserJeep » Tue 09 Oct 2018, 05:44:50

onlooker wrote:-snip-

But make no mistake about it, though at first the rich countries will adapt to some degree to PO, ultimately these same countries are the most vulnerable to it because of their reliance on prodigious amouts of energy to provide the necessities and keep their Economies viable.


I just don't see that. Those "rich" countries are full of unnessary energy expenditures today. Lots of slack to take up before things get serious. On the average, these countries spend 6% of their income on food, something less than they spend on smartphones and other mobile devices. Food can undergo a 10X increase and grumbling will be happening, but only the lower income strata will be hungry. Likewise, about 90% of FF consumption can be eliminated.

I have previously estimated that we can have very similar lifestyles to the present using 1/6 the energy we use today. I do believe that. I do not think we Americans in particular are any less resilient than during the Great Depression.

The "horror" of deciding to continue to use last year's iPhone for two or three more years just doesn't alarm me.
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Re: Why The US Will Be Least Affected By Peak Oil

Unread postby onlooker » Tue 09 Oct 2018, 06:29:41

Kaiser, I think that can be the case but in a limited way. Certainly, some waste and inefficiency exists. But if you look at the graph which I include, the energy expenditure by Sector, depicts are relatively small percentage of total use in actual consumption. The largest expenditures of Energy by far are in the Industrial, Electricity and Transportation Sectors. So, if a significant amount of energy is not available, the very necessary and important functions of a modern industrial society like the US is severely hampered.

As for 6% of income on food, well that presupposes people are employed. If basic infrastructure and economic activites are curtailed that will affect tremendously the level of people employed. The excess energy and waste is sometimes actually peoples jobs. In this day and age, we have come to rely so much on electricity and computers as you well know. So a deficiency in energy to power the Electrical grids would have profoundly negative consequences. So it really is a myth that so much waste and excess energy exists We have developed and designed our societies to our eventual chagrin, to rely on and utilize abundant energy to power the crucial and necessary systems that keep people alive and functioning productively in an organized society.
Last edited by onlooker on Tue 09 Oct 2018, 07:31:36, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Why The US Will Be Least Affected By Peak Oil

Unread postby onlooker » Tue 09 Oct 2018, 06:34:48

2000px-US_energy_consumption_by_sector.svg.png
2000px-US_energy_consumption_by_sector.svg.png (175.92 KiB) Viewed 1665 times
Sorry forgot the graph
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